11 Great Romance Novels Set in London

Europe’s most romantic city, apparently?

Claire Handscombe
5 min readNov 15, 2022


Photo by Hugo Sousa on Unsplash

Way back in 2012, London shocked many of us by being named Europe’s most romantic city.

Admittedly, a lot has changed since 2012, which was something of a golden era for the UK capital, with the Olympics coming to town and much of the city celebrating the Queen’s golden jubilee with flag waving and street parties. But still, the essential Londonness of London hasn’t changed; if anything, it’s cleaned itself up a bit since then. And if the buzz and gritty realities of a bustling city do it for you, then you’ll definitely find those in the Big Smoke — as well as quaint bookshops and the glamour of the West End and Leicester Square film premieres.

As we’ve been taught by all the romantic comedies — including the one featuring one of those quaint bookshops — London is also a great place for serendipitous meetings. There are so many people here — the figure is creeping up to 10 million — that somewhere, there has to be your soulmate, right? That’s what I’m hoping, at least.

The thought of that is itself a little bit romantic. And many are the writers who’ve played into our daydreams — as well as, perhaps, their own — by setting their love stories in London. Here are 11 great ones for you to get started with.

Bearly a Lady by Cassandra Khaw

If you’re a fan of paranormal romance, don’t miss this fun one: the story of a werebear fashion journalist who’s assigned to be the bodyguard to her boss’s nephew. It’s confusing, though, because he’s very handsome, but so is her high school crush, and, in fact, a colleague of hers is quite attractive too…

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

Here’s what Talia Hibbert has to say about Boyfriend Material: “It’s a fun, frothy quintessentially British romcom about a certified chaos demon and a stern brunch daddy with a heart of gold faking a relationship.” I mean, how can you resist that?



Claire Handscombe

Editor of WALK WITH US: How the West Wing Changed Our Lives; author of the novel UNSCRIPTED and of CONQUERING BABEL: a Practical Guide to Learning a Language.