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Best Sad Romance Books

Embrace the heart-rending journey of love and loss with this selection of the most poignant sad romance novels, as praised by romance readers and critics across prominent book blogs. The ranking indicates the emotional impact and popularity of these tales of passion and sorrow.

Recommendations from 7 articles, Taylor Swift, Elon Musk, Emma Watson and 13 others.
12 books on the list
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The Fault in Our Stars book cover
The Fault in Our Stars
John Green - 2012-01-10
Goodreads Rating
A heart-wrenching yet witty tale about Hazel, a terminally ill teen who finds unexpected love in Augustus at a cancer support group. This powerful story explores the beauty and pain of life, love and mortality in a bold, raw, and insightful way.
A Walk to Remember book cover
A Walk to Remember
Nicholas Sparks - 2017-06-01 (first published in 1999)
Goodreads Rating
A small town bad boy learns about the power of true love and selflessness in this heartwarming romance set in the 1950s. Landon Carter never expected to fall for Jamie Sullivan, the quiet and devout daughter of the town minister. But as fate would have it, Jamie becomes Landon's partner for the homecoming dance, and their journey together leads to an incredible realization. Join Landon on his path to self-discovery and witness the strength of the human heart.
The Notebook book cover
The Notebook
Nicholas Sparks - 2016-12-01 (first published in 1996)
Goodreads Rating
A beautiful tale of love, loss, and the power of memories. Amid the stunning landscape of North Carolina, Noah Calhoun is haunted by the memory of the girl he loved fourteen years ago. When she unexpectedly returns, their story takes a miraculous turn with higher stakes, showcasing the many dimensions of love. This deeply moving portrait of emotions and miracles will stay with you forever.
Ugly Love book cover
Ugly Love
A Novel
Colleen Hoover - 2014-08-05
Goodreads Rating
This steamy novel explores the taboo relationship between pilot Miles Archer and artist Tate Collins, who share an undeniable physical attraction. But with a set of strict rules in place and no love on the table, their no-strings arrangement is tested when emotions come into play. A story of love, heartbreak, and shattered rules, Ugly Love explores the darker side of relationships and the pain that can come with them.
The Time Traveler's Wife book cover
The Time Traveler's Wife
Audrey Niffenegger - 2013-09-23 (first published in 2003)
Goodreads Rating
A sweeping and unconventional love story, this novel follows Henry, a librarian who travels through time, and Clare, an artist whose life follows a traditional path. As their passionate love blooms, they must navigate time itself and test the limits of fate. A celebration of love's power over time.
Reminders of Him book cover
Reminders of Him
A Novel
Colleen Hoover - 2022-01-18
Goodreads Rating
This emotional tale by a bestselling author follows a young mother as she seeks to rebuild her life and reunite with her four-year-old daughter after serving five years in prison for a tragic mistake. Despite the obstacles in her way, Kenna finds an unexpected ally in local bar owner Ledger Ward, but their growing connection could put everything at risk. Reminders of Him is a story of hope, redemption, and the power of love to heal even the deepest wounds.
The Things We Leave Unfinished book cover
The Things We Leave Unfinished
Rebecca Yarros - 2021-02-23
Goodreads Rating
After giving up nearly everything in a brutal divorce, Georgia Stanton finds herself back at her late great-grandmother's estate in Colorado, face-to-face with bestselling author Noah Harrison. He's just as arrogant as in his books, but the publisher swears he's the perfect fit to finish Scarlett Stanton's final novel. As they read Scarlett's letters and manuscript, they realize it's based on her real-life romance with a WWII pilot, and the ending isn't a happy one. While the chemistry between Georgia and Noah is undeniable, she's as determined as ever to learn from her great-grandmother's mistakes.
If He Had Been with Me book cover
If He Had Been with Me
Laura Nowlin - 2013-04-01
Goodreads Rating
"If He Had Been with Me" is a gripping tale that explores the power of relationships and the consequences of missed opportunities. The story takes place on a rainy August night, where Finn and Sylvie get into an argument while driving down a slick road. The reason for their argument is kept a secret, but the truth behind their disagreement holds the key to an alternative reality. This book will keep you on the edge of your seat as you dive into the story of two friends and the what-ifs of their relationship.
A Little Life book cover
A Little Life
Hanya Yanagihara - 2015-03-10
Goodreads Rating
This powerful novel follows four college friends as they navigate their way through New York in search of fame and fortune. Tinged by addiction, success, and pride, their relationships deepen over the decades, held together by their devotion to the troubled and enigmatic Jude. A beautiful hymn to brotherhood and a masterful depiction of love in the modern world, A Little Life explores the families we are born into and those we create for ourselves.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
One Day by David Nicholls