The staff at any given book publisher read a lot of books, and Random House Canada is no exception. While the subjects enjoyed can range from the apocalypse to fiction to memoirs, and yes, even erotica, every book tends to involve some sort of romantic element.
In honour of Valentine's Day, the online marketing team at Random House decided to classify their favourite love stories, spanning the office and getting everyone to share the romances that had them all hot and bothered.
Check out the gallery below to see who recommended what — and find out if that book might be one you want to pick up this Valentine’s Day! Feel free to add your own favourite to the list, or in the comments below.
The book: Above All Things by Tanis Rideout
It might be the fictional version of George and Ruth Mallory, but it sure felt pretty real to Shona, one of Random House's publicists. She recommended you pick up Tanis Rideout's Above All Things.
The precis: The Paris Wife meets Into Thin Air in this breathtaking debut novel of obsession and divided loyalties
The book: Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson
Monique, resident poetry lover and Production Assistant at Random House, recommended Autobiography of Red by Anne Carson.
The precis: [An] unconventional re-creation of an ancient Greek myth and wholly original coming-of-age story set in the present.
The book: Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding
"You can't have a list of romantic novels and not include Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding," says Nicola, Director of Publicity at Random House Canada.
The precis: A diary written by a 30-something, who chronicles her dates, drinks and cigarettes. Hilarity ensues.
The book: Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier
Iris, Assistant to SVP of Marketing at Random House, was so excited to tell us the love story that took place in Juliet Marillier's Daughter of the Forest, it made everyone want to read it.
The precis: The first book of a trilogy, this sounds part Cinderella, part Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, part soulmate magic.
The book: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
There's no doubt about Jessica's selection. The Assistant Manager in Online Marketing at Random House even owns a shirt expressing her love of Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. Now that's real love!
The precis: Brontë's masterpiece introduced the world to a radical new type of heroine, one with defiant virtue and moral courage.
The book: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
Constance, Sr. Director of Marketing at Random House said that after reading Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, all other love stories seemed like they were following in the love shadow of Claire and Jamie.
The precis: A spellbinding novel of passion and history, that combines exhilarating adventure with a love story for the ages.
The book: Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
Random House Canada publicity intern Kaley went with a classic when she recommended Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. One can never go wrong when it comes to Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy.
The precis: Five sisters must be married off by their father — and they don't make it easy on him.
The book: Still Life with Woodpecker by Tom Robbins
Erin, Advertising & Graphic Designer, said that Still Life with Woodpecker by Tom Robbins might be an unconventional choice, but it's a great love story!
The precis: Still Life with Woodpecker is a sort of a love story that takes place inside a pack of Camel cigarettes.
The book: The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
Both Ainsley, Online Marketing Specialist and Cassie, Advertising Design Coordinator, recommended The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and who can blame them... it's a fantastic read!
The precis: Henry and Clare are in love, despite him being a time traveller, and her having known him since she was a child. A painfully romantic look at forces beyond our control.
The book: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
Heather, Publicity assistant at Random House, says that she was able to find a beautiful love story in Rachel Joyce's The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry.
The precis: Harold Fry decides to walk hundreds of kilometres to see an old friend — and discovers plenty of truths about his own life and the lives of others.
The book: Vaclev & Lena by Haley Tanner
Cass, Random House's Director of Online Marketing, had no hesitation in revealing that she loved the magical romance in Vaclav & Lena by Haley Tanner.
The precis: Vaclav and Lena, both the children of Russian émigrés, are at the same time from radically different worlds, but when she works as his magician's assistant, they form a bond that backgrounds can't change.
The book: Where We Belong by Emily Giffin
"What can I say, I love a good chick lit book," says online marketing coordinator Lindsey Reeder. "Especially when it comes to Emily Giffin. My recommendation is her newest book Where We Belong."
The precis: Pairing a 36-year-old woman with an 18-year-old girl, the book sets them on a path to finding the things missing in their lives.
The book: Both Sides of Time by Caroline B. Cooney
Assistant manager of online marketing Jessica got to have two choices in the list... mostly because her 12-year-old self once thought that the ground would open and she would find the love of her life, just like Annie did in Caroline B. Cooney's Both Sides of Time.
The precis: Fifteen-year-old Annie Lockwood, a romantic living in the wrong century, travels back a hundred years and lands in 1895.
The book: Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Bhavna, editorial assistant with M&S, revealed in a quick conversation that she had to go with perennial favourite Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.
The precis: You can hardly think of the word "moor" without thinking of the love story between Catherine and Heathcliff, a passionate and all-consuming love story that has lasted through the years.
A version of this post was originally published on Random House's Retreat blog, and published here with permission.