Hear ye, hear ye, and gather ’round because some salacious news just landed from Lady Whistledown herself: Bridgerton season 2 is finally here! In this new batch of episodes—which premiered on Netflix on March 25—viewers are treated to a new Bridgerton love story as we follow eldest son Anthony Bridgerton as he charms newcomers Edwina Sharma and her older sister, Kate Sharma.
And if the excitement of season 2 isn’t enough, it was previously revealed that seasons 3 and 4 of Bridgerton are already in the works, too. Considering the fourth book has a *wink wink* certain couple *wink wink* everyone is waiting for—oh, have I piqued your interest? Get the tea early by reading all the Bridgerton books, linked below!—please enjoy this live footage of me compiling my dream casting for all the delightful new characters to grace our future TV screens:
If you’re positively aflutter with the news of new Bridgerton episodes, subsequently binge-watch them all this weekend, and need more Bridgerton in your life STAT, then you’re in luck. All eight (seriously, eight—one for each sibling!) novels are available to read now. And if you manage to fly through those as fast as my eyebrows flew up while streaming the show, browse our list of additional steamy, Whistledown-approved historical romances to add to your TBR pile now. Enjoy!
The Complete Bridgerton Series
Obviously, we must start here, with the Bridgerton season 1 source material. I read this book originally when I was like 12 after borrowing it from the local library and it blew my tiny little mind. The entire series is amazing, each following one of the eight Bridgerton siblings as they find their way to happily ever after. Author Julia Quinn is especially talented at showcasing the sibling dynamics of the ginormous brood; there is so much delightful bickering and many a contentious game of pall-mall, the 19th-century equivalent to croquet. Light and sparkling as a crisp glass of champagne, the books will give you the same delights as the series: posh manners, a plethora of sex, and, of course, Lady Whistledown.
After years of being the notorious town bachelor, Anthony Bridgerton finally wants to settle down. In his search for true love—and the focus of Bridgerton season 2 on Netflix—he recognizes he could never spend the rest of his life with his intended bride, so he scouts another. With the TV version of this book freshly released, you can expect everybody (and I truly mean everybody) to be glued to their screens this weekend.
This fun Cinderella story is made historical with one of the eldest Bridgerton boys, Benedict. After meeting at a party, Benedict can't shake the feelings he has for a mysterious woman who disappeared after midnight. But then, he meets a housemaid who's equally enthralling—who will he choose to be his future bride?
This book follows Colin Bridgerton and family friend Penelope Featherington, so it definitely scratches an itch for fans of the TV series. In the attempt to figure out who could possibly be Lady Whistledown, now-spinster Penelope and freshly-back-home Colin work together in figuring out the town "mystery." Then, when a 1,000-pound reward is revealed, tensions heighten as the ton becomes more aggressive about unmasking Whistledown. Meanwhile, Colin and Penelope's friendship blooms into a romantic quarrel as they begin to learn the truth about each other.
Eloise Bridgerton is now 28 years old and looking for love—but not the "let's marry just because" kind of love. She desires respect and genuine compatibility. So when she begins exchanging letters with Sir Phillip, a man just as mysterious as he is unique, she becomes vulnerable with the possibility of something new. Their dynamic love story is made complex with the weight he carries from his abusive father, brother's death, his ex-wife's suicide, and the twins she left behind.
This book follows Francesca Bridgerton's road to love and marriage—the entangled feelings she has for her husband's cousin, Michael, lay dormant. But years later, after her husband dies in his sleep, Francesca and Michael's love story begins. This angst-filled storyline is extremely different from the others, letting grief and guilt be the forefront of it all. Once Michael returns to take his rightful position as heir, a newly changed Francesca and now-responsible Michael take steps toward loving each other—but not without her husband's ghost lurking.
Hyacinth Bridgerton, entering her fourth ball of the year, is who many suitors consider a challenge. Refusing to shrink herself and always up for a challenge, she is someone the men love in small doses—but never much more. During visits with her mentor, Lady Danbury, Hyacinth becomes interested in Lady Danbury's grandson, Gareth St. Clair. With a lingering desire to see each other, the two embark on a project to figure out the real history of Gareth, and their love story blooms.
The youngest Bridgerton sibling, Gregory, believes in love—unlike many other young men his age—and he knows that when he finds the woman of his dreams, it will be an instant connection. And that's exactly what happens when he sees Hermione Watson—except she is in love with someone else. So he joins her best friend, Lucy, in an attempt to destroy the couple—but engaged Lucy ends up falling in love with Gregory. Gregory realizes his true feelings and does everything to make sure he is the man at the altar come the day of the wedding.
Bridgerton Book Bundles on Kindle
This Kindle collection contains the first three novels in the Bridgerton series: The Duke and I, The Viscount Who Loved Me, and An Offer from a Gentleman.
This Kindle collection contains books four, five, and six in the Bridgerton series: Romancing Mister Bridgerton, To Sir Phillip, with Love, and When He Was Wicked.
This Kindle collection contains books seven and eight in the Bridgerton series—It’s in His Kiss and On the Way to the Wedding—as well as the first book in her Bridgerton prequel series, Because of Miss Bridgerton.
Historical Romance Books to Read If You Loved Bridgerton
Important: You cannot be a lover of historical romance if you’re going to judge a book by its cover because there are some truly lurid ones. So let’s just collectively move past that and focus on the delicious plots, OK? Fabulous.
It’s rare that an author can take the regency genre and give us something entirely new and endlessly exciting, but Sherry Thomas always delivers on the promise. She writes these richly layered characters embroiled in scandal and I’m utterly transported every time. Here, we follow the reunion of Catherine, the illegitimate daughter of an English adventurer and a Chinese courtesan, and the enigmatic Captain Atwood. The settings are lush and the characters are flawed but impossible not to root for. It's a get-lost-in-it-for-hours kind of read with just the right amount of steam.
What are you even doing if you haven’t read a Lisa Kleypas novel? She writes gorgeously, deliciously descriptive turns of phrase that catapult you right into a regency ballroom. I recommend her entire body of work, but this is a particular fave. I love when historical romance authors can play with the restrictions of the time period to give us two strong leads that aren’t hampered by period-appropriate thinking. Part of her Ravenels series, the novel follows Garrett Gibson, the only female physician in England at the time. Cue many satisfying moments of Garrett slapping sexism directly in the face while also embarking on a sexy affair with a former detective for Scotland Yard. Just what the doctor ordered.
One thing the historical romance genre does incredibly well is family dynamics. There are tons of amazing series serving peak family bicker moments, and I’m here for it all. This series follows the Mackenzies, and, you guessed it, they are hot Scottlsh lords. Think Outlander with even more sex. Seriously. This is the first in the series and one of my favorites for sheer uniqueness. It follows Ian Mackenzie, who spent his youth in an asylum because the 19th century didn’t understand his analytical way of thinking. While it’s not explicitly stated in the novel, Ian displays characteristics of autism and it imbues the book with such a compelling story and emotional arc. It is not a typical historical romance by any stretch and is highly recommended.
In regency times, literary women were called bluestockings (less than complimentary at the time, but now it’s like, women who read? Hot!) and it’s such a pleasure when historical romance authors play with the outdated norms of the time and give us the surfeit of manners without sacrificing strong-willed characters. Very Elizabeth Bennet, no? Here, we follow Annabelle Archer, a suffragette (you love to see it) and student at Oxford, in her quest to recruit men of influence to her cause. There's lots of palpable chemistry in this one; your heart will positively race.
Speaking of fighting the patriarchy, step right up and look no further because I have a book for you. Differing slightly in tone from something like a Bridgerton novel, this is more of an angsty, intellectual burn with two incredibly intelligent women straining against the bonds and norms of their time. It's utterly feminist and such a delight for the genre—Olivia Waite is now a one-click author for me.
Beverly Jenkins is an absolute icon in the historical romance genre and for good reason. She writes female characters who are so unapologetically badass that it is a gift and we are all not worthy. Rebel is set in the aftermath of the Civil War and we follow Val as she works to help the newly emancipated community in New Orleans. Jenkins takes you on an emotional journey, leaning into the difficulties and horror of the era while giving you an undeniable romance to root for. Drake is everything and more in this book, and the steam he ignites with Val is Bridgerton-spoon-scene-worthy.
I have such a weakness for the “teach me how to sex” trope and I’m not even sorry about it. This is one of the best of the bunch, with a heroine who is set to get married but realizes she has absolutely no idea what that actually means (very Daphne Bridgerton vibes here). So, as one does, she seeks out a “gentleman of a certain reputation” for explicit instruction. If you read historical romance, you know they love a gaming hell (think a casino but British and posh), and this series delivers on all the salaciousness that the setting promises. There is a memorable sex scene in this book that is so lush that when you arrive at it, you will instantly know it’s the scene I’m talking about, and you’re welcome.
If there is one thing I adore, it’s a little magic with my romance. And there’s something so sexy about magicians in the 19th century—very Hugh Jackman in The Prestige. This book has an aforementioned sexy magician as well as my other weakness: a 19th-century leading man with tattoos. I mean, this is really everything you need. Sprinkle in just the right amount of humor, buckets of steam, and a pinch of sexy bantering back and forth between our reluctant allies and you’ve got yourself a story.
Remember when I said don’t judge a book by its cover? OK, just checking. Despite the Fabio level of hair blowing around on the front of this book, inside is an absolutely delightful read that made me laugh out loud in my apartment so many times I probably frightened my neighbors. Julie Anne Long has a talent for dropping her characters into such delectable situations that will have you Cheshire-Cat grinning and begging for more. The hero in this book strides around saying things like “unconscionably soft” and “getting ready to give her a pleasuring." It is so perfectly over-the-top and outrageously hot. Read it!
And finally, if you’re looking for a book that will utterly sweep you away, here it is. The leading man in this novel is so compelling, you will be caught from the first moment he steps out of the shadows. Half of this novel takes place in India and half in regency London, and the balance of settings is perfect and very atypical of the genre. Lots of angst here but tempered by true necessity for it—each of our main leads faces shuddering horrors and much of the romance is found in them finding their way back to each other. It's beautifully written and captivating until the last page with, yes, a generous burn of attraction and temptation.
This article was originally published on The Everygirl and first appeared on The Everymom in April 2021. It has been updated for timeliness.