There's a reason enemies-to-lovers is an iconic trope: who doesn't love watching all that smoldering animosity, spitfire rivalry, and sharp-edged banter turn into swoony romance? Satisfy your need for enemy lovers with these eight debut novels.
PRIDE AND PROTEST by Nikki Payne, coming November 15th from Berkley
Liza B–The Only DJ That Gives a Jam—wants to take her neighborhood back from the soulless property developer dropping unaffordable condos on every street corner in DC. But her planned protest at their corporate event takes a turn after she mistakes the smoldering hot CEO for the waitstaff. When they go toe-to-toe, the sparks fly—but her impossible-to-ignore family thwarts her every move. Liza wants Dorsey Fitzgerald out of her hood, but she’ll settle for getting him out of her head. At first, Dorsey writes Liza Bennett off as an over-caffeinated woke weekend warrior. As the adopted Filipino son of a wealthy white family he’s always felt a bit out of place, and knows a fraud when he sees one. But when Liza’s protest results in a viral meme, their lives are turned upside down and Dorsey comes to realize this irresistible revolutionist is the most real woman he’s ever met.
HOW TO EXCAVATE A HEART by Jake Maia Arlow, coming November 1st from HarperTeen
It all starts when Shani runs into May. Like, literally. With her mom’s Subaru. Attempted vehicular manslaughter was not part of Shani’s plan. She was supposed to be focusing on her monthlong paleoichthyology internship. She was going to spend all her time thinking about dead fish and not at all about how she was unceremoniously dumped days before winter break. It could be going better. But when a dog-walking gig puts her back in May’s path, the fossils she’s meant to be diligently studying are pushed to the side—along with the breakup. Then they’re snowed in together on Christmas Eve. As things start to feel more serious, though, Shani’s hurt over her ex-girlfriend’s rejection comes rushing back. Is she ready to try a committed relationship again, or is she okay with this just being a passing winter fling?
THE STARS IN THEIR EYES by Kristy Gardner, coming October 18th from City Owl Press
The stakes were clear after the Change - survive together, or die. Calay and Tess’s love has kept them alive four years after the aliens decimated Earth. But when Calay finds herself fighting for her life and Tess missing, she hears death knocking. She only has one choice: she must find Tess. Reluctantly, Calay braves the new nightmares of a ravaged Pacific Northwest, alone. Thrust into the darkness, she is haunted by horrors beyond her imagination — alien executioners, a mysterious man whom she can’t quite put her finger on, the rise of a sinister cult, and a shocking family secret that challenges everything she thinks she knows. As the lines between good and evil blur, Calay’s desperation threatens to spill what’s left of her humanity. As she's pulled deeper into the madness of a world that has become kill or be killed, Calay realizes she must deny her feral instincts and resist becoming a monster herself. That means confronting her demons as she stares down the barrel of a terrifying truth: she may actually be forever alone. Time is running out and she knows it. Her only hope is to become who she is truly meant to be and unify with the love of her life once and for all. But at what cost?
IF YOU COULD SEE THE SUN by Ann Liang, coming October 11th from Inkyard/HarperCollins
Alice Sun has always felt invisible at her elite Beijing international boarding school, where she’s the only scholarship student among China’s most rich and influential teens. But then she starts uncontrollably turning invisible—actually invisible. When her parents drop the news that they can no longer afford her tuition, even with the scholarship, Alice hatches a plan to monetize her strange new power—she’ll discover the scandalous secrets her classmates want to know, for a price. To do so, she has to team up with the infuriatingly attractive, pretentious tech heir, Henry Li, who’s been the bane of her existence for the past four years. But between balancing schoolwork, her growing relationship with the very last person she wants to fall for, and stealing secrets, things start to slip through the cracks. As the tasks escalate from petty scandals to actual crimes, Alice must decide if helping her family is worth losing her conscience— or even her life.
THE SECOND DEATH OF EDIE AND VIOLET BOND by Amanda Glaze, coming October 4th from Union Square Kids
Edie and Violet Bond know the truth about death. The seventeen-year-old twins are powerful mediums, just like their mother—Violet can open the veil between life and death, and Edie can cross into the spirit world. But their abilities couldn’t save them when their mother died and their father threatened to commit them to a notorious asylum. Now runaways, Edie and Violet are part of a traveling Spiritualist show, a tight-knit group of young women who demonstrate their real talents under the guise of communing with spirits. Each night, actresses, poets, musicians, and orators all make contact with spirits who happen to have something to say. . . notions that young ladies could never openly express. But when Violet’s act goes terribly wrong one night, Edie learns that the dark spirit responsible for their mother’s death has crossed into the land of the living. As they investigate the identity of her mysterious final client, Edie must also contended with a too-curious reporter named Laws Everett, who is determined to expose the mediums as frauds. But when they realize that someone is hunting mediums, Edie must grudgingly accept Laws’s help to uncover a killer who will stop at nothing to cheat death.
HOW TO SUCCEED IN WITCHCRAFT by Aislinn Brophy, coming September 27 from Penguin Random House/Putnam
Shay Johnson has all the makings of a successful witch. As a junior at T.K. Anderson Magical Magnet School, she’s determined to win the Brockton Scholarship—her ticket into the university of her dreams. Her competition? Ana freaking Álvarez. The key to victory? Impressing Mr. B, drama teacher and head of the scholarship committee. When Mr. B asks Shay to star in this year’s aggressively inclusive musical, she warily agrees, even though she’ll have to put up with Ana playing the other lead. But in rehearsals, Shay realizes Ana is . . . not the despicable witch she’d thought. Perhaps she could be a friend—or more. And Shay could use someone in her corner once she becomes the target of Mr. B’s unwanted attention. When Shay learns she’s not the first witch to experience his inappropriate behavior, she must decide if she’ll come forward. But how can she speak out when her future's on the line?
IN THE SHADOW GARDEN by Liz Parker, coming September 13th from Forever (Grand Central Publishing / Hachette)
There’s something magical about Yarrow, Kentucky. The three empathic witches of the Haywood family are known for their shadow garden—from strawberries that taste like chocolate to cherry tomatoes imbued with the flavors of basil and oregano. Their magic can cure any heartache, and the fruits of their garden bring a special quality to the local bourbon distillery. On one day every year, a shot of Bonner bourbon will make your worst memory disappear. But the Haywoods will never forget the Bonners’ bitter betrayal. Twenty years ago, the town gave up more than one memory; they forgot an entire summer. One person died. One person disappeared. And no one has any recollection of either. When Irene Haywood's tea leaves tell her a visitor is coming to town who will bring either love or sorrow, she finds herself face-to-face with a Bonner she doesn't remember, and despite a generation's old rivalry, she might just be falling for him.
What enemies to lovers book are you most excited to dive into?
THE MAKE-UP TEST by Jenny Howe, coming September 13th from Macmillan/St. Martin's Griffin Allison Avery loves to win. After acing every academic challenge she’s come up against, she’s finally been accepted into her dream Ph.D. program at Claymore University, studying medieval literature under a professor she’s admired for years. Sure, grad school isn’t easy—the classes are intense, her best friend is drifting away, and her students would rather pull all-nighters than discuss The Knight's Tale—but she’s got this. Until her ex-boyfriend shows up. Colin Benjamin might be the only person who loves winning more than Allison does, and when they're both assigned to TA for the same professor, the game is on. What starts as a personal battle of wits (and lit) turns into all-out war when their professor announces a career-changing research trip opportunity—with one spot to fill. Competing with Colin is as natural as breathing, and after he shattered her heart two years ago, Allison refuses to let him come out on top. But when a family emergency and a late night road trip—plus a very sexy game of Scrabble—throw them together for a weekend, she starts to wonder if they could be stronger on the same team. And if they fall for each other all over again, Allison will have to choose between a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and what could be a twice-in-a-lifetime love.
Let your TBR overflow! !