What do you get when you mix together elements of speculative fiction and the romance genre together and then add a heaping teaspoon of horror, science fiction and/or fantasy? Well, you probably get the sub-genre of paranormal romance. This is a genre that’s full of ghosts, psychic abilities, time travel, inter-species extraterrestrial romances, and other things that fall under the paranormal activity. Regardless of whether you’re new to this genre or have enjoyed reading them before, you’ll likely enjoy finding out about the best paranormal romance books currently available, and that’s precisely what we’re going to show everyone reading this article.
Quick Summary of the Best Paranormal Romance Books
- Best Vampire Romance
Vampire Academy Box Set (Amazon) – Review
- Best For Young Adults
Hush, Hush (Amazon) – Review
- Best Paranormal Bestseller
Dark Lover: Book 1 Of The Black Dagger Brotherhood (Amazon) – Review
- Best Alien Paranormal Romance
The Host (Amazon) – Review
- Best Exotic Paranormal Romance
City of Bones: The Mortal Instruments (Amazon) – Review
- Best TV-Adapted Book
Dead Until Dark (Amazon) – Review
- Best Angel Paranormal Book
Angel’s Blood: A Guild Hunter Novel (Amazon) – Review
- Best NYT Bestseller
Darkfever: Fever Series Book 1 (Amazon) – Review
- Best Female Protagonist
Shiver Paperback (Amazon) – Review
- Best Historical Fantasy
Outlander: Book 1 (Amazon) – Review
Best Vampire Romance: Vampire Academy Box Set
Richelle Mead is an author of 25+ books for both teens and adults, and many of them are international bestsellers. Her books have made it on the USA Today Bestseller’s List, as well as the best seller’s list of the New York Times. She has also received honors from the American Library Association and her books have been translated into dozens of languages and even adapted into graphic novels. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that this book is not only so well received, but also might be one of the best paranormal romance books around. And it’s a book that’s been made into a feature film.
This set features all six books of the Vampire Series, a series that follow Lissa Dragomir—a mortal vampire that has a fierce bond to the magic of the Earth. Her friend, Rose Hathaway, is a Dhampir—which means that she has both human and vampire blood flowing through her veins. It also means that she’s dedicated to protecting Lissa from the Strigoi. As the two navigate this world, they must never let their guard down, must avoid the powerful Strigoi from making Lissa one of their own, and they must confront and deal with the temptation of a forbidden romance.
Best For Young Adults: Hush, Hush
This book series is written by Becca Fitzpatrick, the author of novels such as Black Ice, Dangerous Lies, and the Hush, Hush Saga. All of these books debuted as New York Times Bestsellers, not surprising for a book that is gripping and keeps readers turning one page after another. And this book set features Hush, Hush; Crescendo; Silence, and Finale–all of the books in this series. This saga focuses on Nora Grey, a 16-year old girl living in Coldwater, Maine. She lives with her mother, Blythe in an 18th-century farmhouse that’s located on the outskirts of town. Nora’s father was murdered the year before in Portland, an event that traumatized her greatly. It’s against this backdrop that the story begins.
Although Nora very much focuses on her grades in this story, things begin to change dramatically for her. Her friend Patch Cipriano is a fallen angel that’s posing as a high school student, and from this point on we’re going to refrain from ruining the story. Needless to say, their relationship gets complicated at about the same time as Nora’s life begins to spiral out of control. All of these plot points come together to make a great story that the reader isn’t going to want to put down. It’s no wonder this book is one of the best paranormal books currently available.
Best Paranormal Bestseller: Dark Lover: Book 1 Of The Black Dagger Brotherhood
J.R Ward has more than a few novels to her name. She has about 30+ novels to her name, and probably one of the best books she’s ever written is this one: The Black Brotherhood Series. This is a New York Times bestselling novel, which now puts the number of books printed and bought worldwide at over 15-million. And trust us when we say that you don’t get to publish so many books if you’re not doing something very right. To prove our point, we would like to introduce you to this book series, so you can pick up a true soon-to-be classic.
This book follows Wrath, the only purebred vampire left on the planet and one who has a score to settle with the monsters who killed his parents centuries ago. However, when a fighter of his is killed, leaving a half breed daughter unaware of her fate, then he must put down his dagger and bring the female into another world. She is helpless against him and his touch is threatening to ignite a hunger in her that might just overtake both of them. If you’re a fan of true paranormal romance fiction, then this is a book that you’re going to want to read.
Best Alien Paranormal Romance: The Host
Even though Stephanie Meyer is best known for her Twilight books—a series that has sold over 100 million copies, this book series is actually one of her best. It starts with the Earth being invaded by a species that grabs the minds of their human hosts. An epidemic that has left most of humanity overtaken. The soul that has invaded Melanie’s body didn’t expect that she would resist relinquishing her mind to the organism and she fills its mind with visions of the mad she lives. The man she has loved is Jared, a human being who is in hiding from the invasion. Eventually, the “soul” begins to yearn for the man she has never met.
As the being begins to yearn for Jared, she and Melanie become unwilling allies, both of them agreeing to search for the man they love. Now they’re both in a love triangle that will involve three beings but only two human bodies. This makes this an interesting take on the paranormal romance genre and one that many of our readers are going to want to take a chance on reading. It’s a story that works its way under the reader’s skin and doesn’t let up.
Best Exotic Paranormal Romance: City of Bones: The Mortal Instruments
When 15-year old Clary Fray witnesses a murder at the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she doesn’t know what to expect. The murder was committed by three teenagers who are all covered in strange tattoo and armed with exotic weapons. This turns out to be her first contact with Shadowhunters, special warriors whose only mission is to rid the planet of demons. One of the Shadowhunters, Jace, has the face of an angel but tends to act like a jerk. Within the next 24-hours, Clary will be drug into his world of vengeance when her mother disappears and she’s attacked by a demon.
This is a gritty, exciting and exotic thriller that keeps the pace up from the beginning of the book to the end. It’s a book written by Cassandra Clare, a New York Times bestselling author who has had her books sell more than 36 million copies worldwide. Her books have also been translated into more than 35 different languages as well. Anyone searching for a gripping drama is going to want to give this book a try. It has everything a lover of paranormal romances could want: romance, demons, and plenty of action wrapped around a pretty tight story.
Best TV-Adapted Book: Dead Until Dark
Anyone familiar with the HBO-series True Blood probably already knows that series is based upon the Sookie Stackhouse series, from which this is the first book in the series. It follows Sookie Stackhouse, a waitress from rural Louisiana who feels that something is missing in her life. She’s happy, but her special ability, her telepathy, makes her isolate herself from other people. Because of the immense concentration she has to use to avoid reading people’s minds, she often acts in strange ways and that tends to make the people of Bon Temps, Louisiana think that she’s a bit off of her rocker.
At Merlotte’s, the bar where she works, her life suddenly changes one day. The events of the day require her to save the local vampire from the people who are looking to harvest and profit off of his blood. When she saves the vampire, a vampire whose name is Bill, she is immediately tied to him. From there, the story begins to take off and Sookie’s life takes an unexpected turn that she could never imagine. All of this makes this a great story and a quick read for fans of paranormal romance books. We liked this book quite a bit and thought it worked out quite well.
Best Angel Paranormal Book: Angel’s Blood: A Guild Hunter Novel
This book is written by Nalini Singhlives, a bestselling author who works in New Zealand. Her books have made it on the USA Today Bestselling authors’ list as well as the New York Times Bestseller List. And this book is probably her best one. It features Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux who was hired by Archangel Raphael for an impossible task. Although her job is usually to hunt wayward vampires, the job she has to do know is a bit different.
She has to hunt an archangel that’s gone rogue. It’s a job that will require her to be part of an epic killing spree, all while she’s being consumed with passion. If the hunt she’s been prescribed to do doesn’t kill her, then the seductive touch of Raphael might just do it. After all, archangels can break mortals with their mere gaze, so she had better be careful. Although the storyline admittedly seems a little far fetched, Nalini Singhlives can pull it off with an extraordinary flourish that few writers can pull off. This is a book that paranormal romance readers are going to want to add to their bookshelf.
Best NYT Bestseller: Darkfever: Fever Series Book 1
The Fever Series is written by Karen Marie Moning, the number-one New York Times bestselling author of the Highlander series. She has won numerous awards for her work including a RITA award for best paranormal romance, as well as a Goodreads Reader’s Choice Award. She is also an alum of Immaculate Conception Academy and has a BA degree in Society & Law from Purdue University. Before she became a full-time writer she worked in the insurance industry. fortunately, she gave all of that up to bring us this exciting paranormal romance novel.
This story begins with MacKayla Lane, a woman who thinks her life is pretty ordinary, even if she is pretty happy. Then an extraordinary even happens. Her sister is murdered, leaving just one clue to her death—a message on MacKayla’s phone. This message would lead her to Ireland, where she frantically searched for answers. As she begins her search, she is drawn into a realm of shadow where good and evil both wear the same seductive mask. Her search leads on a quest to find a powerful Dark Book that threatens to destroy the very fabric of reality.
Best Female Protagonist: Shiver Paperback
This book is written by Maggie Stiefvater, a New York Times bestselling author who has not only crafted this wonderful novel but has also crafted a variety of other ones including The Scorpio Races, Linger, and Forever. She is a Michael L. Printz Honor Book Award recipient. In our opinion, this is one of her best novels and definitely worth the time taken to read it. It’s the story about a woman named Grace who has watched wolves that live in the woods behind her home. She notices the presence of one wolf in particular—one with one yellow eye that seems to have an eerie presence that she can do without. She then meets a yellow-eyed boy who she knows deep down is her wolf. His name is Sam and he has to fight to stay human or he’ll not only risk losing himself but also Grace forever.
Best Historical Fantasy: Outlander: Book 1
This book is the story of Claire Randal, a WWII nurse who returns from the war to join her husband for a second honeymoon. Unfortunately, their honeymoon is destroyed when she touched a stone ruin and is transported back to Scotland in 1743. Scotland at this time is diving by war and ravaged by border clans. This sets up the interesting main premise of the book. Will she be able to make it back to her own time, or is she destined to stay with James Fraser and the Clan Mackenzie forever. Only by reading this book can the reader find out what happens. This is a book that’s expertly written by Diana Gabaldon, a New York Times bestselling author. It’s a remarkable tale that’s been turned into a television series and it’s a novel that should reside on the bookshelf of any paranormal romance fan.