Top Five Harlequin Romantic Scenes — Just In Time for Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day is a Big Thing at Harlequin HQ. After all, we’re the leading publisher of romance. Sixty years of publishing. Five point eight billion books sold. Thirty-four thousand titles. So trust me when I say you can learn a lot from a Harlequin romance novel! If you’re looking for inspiration curing this weekend of love, check out our top five list of romantic scenes to live by, gathered from some of our recent releases! (And, be warned—here be spoilers…)


1. Give her something special—Nicholas Brisbane gives Lady Julia Grey that special necklace in Deanna Raybourn’s Silent in the Grave. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but it should come from the heart! You know she cares because she’ll wear it with anything, even if it doesn’t match that aubergine and dove-grey evening gown.

2. Tell it to her in your own words—communication is the key to a successful relationship; so is it any wonder that Mariah is touched by the heartfelt words of an unknown man?

“It makes no sense, but lately I have been homesick for a place I have never been and I have been missing a boy I have never seen. The yearning I read in John James’s letters is the yearning I have felt my whole life. It is a need to be important to someone. And I aim to be that to him if I am able.”—Her Colorado Man by Cheryl St. John (Harlequin Historical, December 2009)

3. Challenge her—is she reluctant to give in to her feelings? Can you feel that she’s 90% there, but she needs that final push to fall utterly and completely in love with you? Let her know that it’s alright, just like Reese Campbell does in Leslie Kelly’s Play with Me (Harlequin Blaze, February 2010).

“You know, if I hadn’t already seen just how daring you can be, I’d have to conclude you were a total chickenshit.”

Her eyes flared wide in surprise. “What did you call me?”

“You heard me,” he said with a shrug.

“I’m not afraid of the beach,” she insisted.

He’d lay money she intentionally understood. “I didn’t say you were.”

“Then what are you saying?”

Putting a hand on her elbow, he lead her out the door while she was distracted being all pissed off. “I’m just wondering something. Are you scared if you take your hands out of my pants for too long you might actually start to like me?”

4. Learn from your past—easier said than done, right? But when you believe in love, funny things can happen. Like in What the Librarian Did by Karina Bliss (Harlequin Superromance, March 2010), Devin endured two bad marriages, nasty public scandals and the break up of his band (along with struggling with alcoholism) to find the strength to make Sophia love him.

All his trials had been preparation, strengthening him to become a man capable of loving a woman who so deserved to be loved—and who might always hold something back.

He loved her anyway.

5. When all else fails, go big or go home—we all know it. We all love it. Lloyd Dobbler’s musical courtship, Jerry Maguire’s “You complete me”, Noah Calhoun’s house built on love—it’s the big gesture. They certainly tug at our heartstrings, don’t they? Here’s another grand gesture that could go down in the ages: in Courtney Milan’s Proof by Seduction, “Madame Esmerelda” predicts Gareth Carhart will find his true love by bestowing her with an elephant. Of course, in the beginning of the book, she hands him an elephant figurine. But when Gareth decides that she’s the one for him? Let’s just say, it’s grandiose. 🙂

There you have it, a short but sweet list of lessons from the pages of our books. Send your sweetie over here if you want him or her to take the hint! And don’t worry—we have plenty more to share. And thanks to everyone who shared their favourite Harlequin scenes with me in the past couple of weeks. I couldn’t have written this post without the other fabulous readers who gave me their input. Hope your Valentine’s Day is sweet!

Oh, and think your weekend’s going to be quiet? Think again! eHarlequin.com is having a Valentine’s Weekend Sale with 14% off all books, plus a FREE featured book when you buy 2 or more! Head here to start shopping.

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    February 12, 2010 at 9:30 pm
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