Don’t Pout, We’ve Got Recommendations 💋

Look, we know Valentine’s Day isn’t for everyone. But whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s, Anti-Valentine’s or Galentine’s – we’ve got some great recommendations for you. These are allllll books written by women, for women, about women. Some are in-love. Some are more in-revenge-mode. Because at Waypoint Books, we support Women’s Rights, and Wrongs.

A thrilling novella about the night Rizzio, ambassador and friend of Mary, Queen of Scots, was brutally murdered in a coup to take her throne. This reads like a Shakespearean tragedy, with gore, and violence, and psychological intrigue – as the men surrounding Queen Mary plot to place their own gullible (male) fool on the throne instead.

Mary is heavily pregnant during this, which adds a level of tension even in such a short time, and the visceral, carefully curated way that Mina writes is beyond expert. I’ve not been able to stop thinking about this novel, and I’d love some recommendations to come back to me of books just as good!

Best known for The Love Hypothesis, Ali Hazelwood has (and we’re eternally grateful) provided romance after romance based in STEM, with fantastic characters, wonderful scenes of action and steam and science. But I have to say, Love on the Brain might be my favourite. The classic trope of ‘she falls hard, but he fell first’, meets ‘work rivals to lovers’ just gets me every time. Plus the pop-punk styling of the characters, the legit ‘could be death’ stakes, and the development of science I don’t understand but am happy to follow just makes this a five star recommendation.

Perfect for romance fans who enjoy great dialogue, well-crafted stories, and a quick pace.

I am obsessed with this book. When I talk about ‘women’s wrongs’, I mean Clytemnestra specifically and exclusively. Mother to murdered children, daughter of a warrior queen, and married to a monster – Clytemnestra is the original scorned woman with vengeful intent. I adore her. And I adore this book – a slow burn with high-octane violence, the constant low-lying insidious threat that feels authentic and genuinely unsettling, LGBT+ representation and just great storytelling. What more could the Ancient Greek Girlies want?

Can’t have a valentine’s day recommendation list without the book that officially got me back into reading romance – Get a Life, Chloe Brown is the first in the Brown Sisters Trilogy and one of the best romances I’ve ever read. Disability Rep, Own Voice BIPOC Author, STEAM that would soothe the tiktok girlies and inspire those who aren’t sure they want vivid sex in their books or not. (I always thought it was a bit cringe, but turns out I was just reading bad books. Hibbert proved me wrong, and I’m here for it.)

Chloe Brown needs to get a life – after nearly being hit by a car, she’s got a bucket list a mile long and she needs Red’s help to do it. Red is her building manager, resident grump and tortured artist. He’s big, he’s broad, he’s broody – and he’s getting under Chloe’s skin. SO GOOD!

Stepping away from the fiction for a second, let’s champion women in all aspects of life with You Goddess! I picked this one up after reading What Would Boudicca Do? And it’s the perfect follow on for anyone who needs a hypewoman in their corner.

You Goddess! takes us on a colorful tour of ancient deities and legends through the prism of female power, sharing the mythical stories of 25 goddesses from every corner of the globe. In this irreverent guide these fierce and fantastic deities will help you to stop apologizing, keep your cool, embrace your body and get what you are owed. Divinely illustrated by Georgia Perry, You Goddess! will help you conquer today’s world.

Maybe Graphic Novels are more your thing – don’t worry! I’ve got recommendations for you there too. From writer Jamila Rowser and artist Robyn Smith comes a captivating graphic novel love letter to the beauty and endurance of Black women, their friendships, and their hair.

Wash Day Diaries the perfect Galentine’s choice for reading – championing self-care over caring about men. I’m here for it. It follows four friends as they navigate city life as women of colour (correct me if I’m wrong, but I think one of the characters might be enby) – exploring their love lives, their work lives, and their social lives. You’ll love them all, and feel totally inspired to Galentines your way through the rest of your work week, I promise.

On the theme of Galentine’s, Self Care, Mental Health and championing women of colour taking care of themselves – I’ve got to recommend Queenie again. Queenie is a hot mess, her job sucks, her love life is down the toilet and it’s hanging out with her mental health in the U-bend. But with the help of her friends, her family, and by taking the steps needed to work on herself, Queenie tries to get it together and we respect it.

When this book was first released, it was championed as a HILARIOUS book. I don’t see it as that, but I do think it’s poignant and relevant, and that’s why I keep recommending it. Perfect for fans of Kiley Reid and Candice Braithewaite.

Anddddd we’re back to murder. Look, I can only go so long without recommending books about female killers. Women’s Wrongs – remember? Anyway – this book HAS IT ALL. You’ll spend the whole time questioning whether the mystery is supernatural or psychological, exploring every new lead, double-checking the evidence. And then you’ll realise – wait, they’ve solved it, and there’s still a hundred pages to go? And question everything you ever knew.

Hannah Catton’s husband is dead. Graham was murdered, and the police caught the guy ten years ago. But now there’s a podcast which claims it has new evidence which proves they got the wrong man. Did Hannah kill her husband? She can’t remember. She doesn’t want to remember. Because maybe, just maybe, she did…

Okay, lets end on something romantic – seeing as it’s Valentine’s. The Worst Best Man is a great LatinX romance, with some of the best uses of the classic romance tropes. We’ve got ‘enemies to lovers,’ ‘work rivals,’ ‘she’s highly strung but he loves it’, ‘food is love,’ ‘one bed,’ and then (I don’t know if this is a trope but I love it) ‘steamy scene in a romantic outdoors setting’.

As someone who used to work in the wedding industry, I related to Carlina Santos a lot, and I adored her. A wedding planner who couldn’t have planned for being jilted at the alter, reunited with the man who brought her relationship to its knees. It’s so good, you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll swoon. The perfect Valentine’s read to be honest.

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