One Day in December by Josie Silver starts with our main character, Laurie, sitting on a bus on her way home when she looks out of a window and locks eyes with a man she’s never seen. At this moment, she realizes that she’s head over heels in love with him. The bus drives away, and she keeps her eyes peeled for the next year, hoping to see the busboy again.
One year later, she and her best friend Sarah are throwing a Christmas party in their flat. Sarah introduces Laurie to her new boyfriend, Jack, a busboy. For the next ten years, we follow Laurie and Jack as they don’t get together. The entire book is a vast and utter mess of first love.
Books like One Day In December are heartwarming, emotional, and captivating love stories. Each book has its unique strengths and themes, but they all share a common thread of exploring the complexities of human relationships and the power of love to transform our lives.
10 Books Like One Day In December (Romance Literature)
While reading One Day In December, I cried for some moments because it was heartbreaking. I felt sympathy for the main character and unlucky girl, Laurie. I read many love storybooks as a romance lover, but this was different. Do you feel the same as me? You also think touchy and want more similar books as it. Here I will talk about ten popular romance books similar to One Day In December. Let’s start!
1. This Time Next Year
This Time Next Year takes place in London, the best setting for romance. This is about a girl named Minnie who is thirty years old. It’s starting on her 30th birthday, and it is New Year’s Day. She was almost the first nineteen nineties baby, but another baby boy was born in the hospital, who beat her to the grand prize and fame. All of that felt like a minute. Many claims that this other baby boy also took all of the luck because of many signs that she’s unlucky on New Year’s Day and New Year’s Eve.
She’s unlucky because this guy Quinn took her luck with her 30th birthday, and she meets Quinn there at his birthday party that she’s attending. She gets stuck in an unlucky position, as she always does this time of year. Quinn seems likely to take her a lot. He looks wealthy and makes something for himself, whereas Minnie has had a hard life.
She owns a pie company with her best friend. That’s like Meals on Wheels, where they deliver pies to the elderly and those in need. But it’s not doing well financially. They hire a ragtag group of people to be employed. People who haven’t found their place in this pie company are evicted from her apartment, and her life is not ideal.
So she runs into Quinn and sees that he has it all together. That’s living up to the idea she always had of him her whole life. It is their love story, but it is more than a love story because, as you can tell by the sound of that, Minnie is at a crossroads in her life, where she feels at a loss of what to do.
So it’s her discovering how to deal with the bad luck she thinks she’s been given. It’s also about family relationships as well as One Day In December. That makes the romance much better when something substantial is behind it, like a good family plot.
Author: Sophie Cousens
Average Rating: 4.3/5
Category: Holiday Romance, Literature & Fiction
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle
2. The Light We Lost
Like One Day In December, this story of unrequited love follows Lucy and Gabe’s main characters. Lucy and Gabe met on September 11, 2001, which formed their relationship and bond. The Light We Lost follows their lives and what happens after their relationship. But Lucy does get into a relationship with another man. It’s about that relationship, how Gabe is still somehow a part of her, and how he plays a role in her life, even though they are not together.
Much of the writing makes reading his dialogue and Lucy’s interpretation quick. Also, the story covers approximately 13 years. It may be even more, a little less, but it covers a long time and is a short book. So you’re getting snapshots of Lucy’s life and what she wants to share with the reader. It is written in the second person. Lucy is telling this whole story to Gabe.
So Lucy is hung up on Gabe, and even while she’s on Gabe, she gets into this relationship with another man. The other man’s name is Darren. He’s a nice guy. However, Lucy doesn’t feel he understands her as much as Gabe understands her.
A couple of times, Lucy tries to make Darren understand her deeply and how Gabe did so effortlessly, but she almost stops herself each time. She doesn’t let herself explain herself and show herself truly to Darren. There were times in the story when Darren was selfish and self-absorbed, so he didn’t understand Lucy or her desires.
Back to the point of, does Gabe understand her? Gabe doesn’t even understand Lucy because he is so self-absorbed. I won’t address what your dreams are now flashing forward to the end. Lucy is pregnant by Gabe. Also, we don’t know how this story ends.
Author: Jill Santopolo
Average Rating: 4.4/5
Category: Contemporary Romance, American Literature
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Hardcover | Audio CD
3. The Unhoneymooners
Romance differs from other genres because people read romance to know some tropes. In The Unhoneymooners, the main character is Olive. At the beginning of the story, she is at her sister’s wedding, and her sister is the person who wins everything. So she has put together this wedding, winning all of these things, and she has this whole honeymoon that she won. Everyone ends up getting sick at the wedding besides Olive.
So the bride says she wants them to go on their honeymoon because she won it and didn’t want to waste it. So Olive and Ethan, who hate each other, have to go on this honeymoon and pretend they’re married because the bride wants someone to enjoy the honeymoon, and everything goes from there.
We have enemies to lovers. These two people hate each other, so they go and their enemies to lovers. They’re stuck in the same location and have to be fake-married. So it’s fake dating on steroids. They also have to share a room and be physical when they don’t want to be.
Author: Christina Lauren
Average Rating: 4.6/5
Category: Humorous American Literature, Contemporary Literature & Fiction Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Audio CD
4. History Is All You Left Me
History Is All You Left Me was an artistic distillation of the author’s first novel and was a beautiful experience from this one. The premise was very focused and unique in a different way. This novel is told in two other parts today, starting with November 2016 and then history, which begins in 2014. History is told in the first person, and then the present-day chapters are told in the second person, with the main character talking to his ex-boyfriend.
In the first chapter, we discover that Griffin, the main character’s ex-boyfriend Theo, has died. Griffin lives in New York, and Theo has moved to California. They broke up. Theo is dating someone else who is now in town for Theo’s funeral. The history chapter goes back to when Griffin and Theo were friends before they started dating, and it tells the story of their relationship that eventually catches up to us. Griffin suffers from OCD, and we find out how that has progressed in their relationship.
Theo’s boyfriend is from California. So it’s a very heavy premise. Theo’s presence between the two-time frames in the book is haunting. Learning about their relationship from the start after we know he’s dead makes everything messy and complicated. This is the novel that I could see as a play like One Day In December.
So, we have three main characters: Griffin, Theo, and Jackson. They all serve each other in different ways. It would be so interesting to see that on-screen or on stage. Adam Silvera is so good at writing those small, tiny moments, turning them into heartbreaking truth, diving into how we think it is.
Author: Adam Silvera
Average Rating: 4.6/5
Category: Adult LGBTQ+ Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Hardcover | Audio CD
5. It Ends with Us
It Ends with Us follows a girl named Lily Bloom, and it tells two love stories at the exact moment. At the beginning of the book, she meets a guy named Ryle. He is a neurosurgeon, handsome, charming, ambitious, and successful.
Lily’s relationship with him is developing. They go their separate ways. They meet, coming back together. Simultaneously, Lily is packing up her apartment, and she finds an old journal of hers where she has recounted this love story that she went through in high school with a boy named Atlas.
Atlas was a homeless boy that was crashing into an abandoned house next door to her, and she ended up helping him and bringing him food and stuff. They bonded over that. You’re like flashing back as you’re also like seeing Lily and present-day and starting a new relationship with this guy, Ryle.
If you’re going to read this book, you have to be in a neutral mindset because it’s so thought-provoking. It deals with very serious real topics which they pull at your heartstrings. The book’s first half is unique, and the plot twist is similar to One Day In December.
The author has a way of making you genuinely fall in love with her characters and trust them. You feel betrayed when a character makes a bad decision or does wrong to another character. This was rough and made it even more challenging when you got to the acknowledgments at the end, which is heartbreaking.
Author: Colleen Hoover
Average Rating: 4.7/5
Category: Contemporary Romance, Women’s Domestic Life Fiction (Best Seller)
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Mass Market Paperback | Audio CD
6. The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
The Flatshare is a charming romantic comedy that will make you laugh and cry equally. The story follows Tiffy and Leon, who share a one-bedroom apartment but have never met in person. Tiffy works during the day, while Leon works at night.
They communicate by leaving notes for each other around the apartment. They start to get to know each other through their notes and fall in love. Like One Day in December, it is a heartwarming love story that will make you feel all the feels. The characters are lovable, and the plot is full of surprises.
7. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
The Rosie Project is a hilarious romantic comedy about a socially awkward genetics professor named Don Tillman. He is on a quest to find the perfect wife using a scientific approach. But when he meets Rosie, a free-spirited bartender, his carefully planned life is turned upside down. The characters are lovable, and the plot is both funny and touching.
8. The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
This sci-fi, unique, and unforgettable love story is about a man named Henry. He has a genetic disorder that causes him to time travel involuntarily, and his wife, Clare, tries to build an everyday life with him despite the challenges. “One Day in December” and ”The Time Traveler’s Wife” is a touching and emotional love story that will stay with you long after you finish reading them.
9. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
Me Before You is a heart-wrenching love story about a young woman who takes a job as a caregiver for a quadriplegic man. They spend more time together and begin to fall in love. But their relationship is complicated by Will’s desire to end his life. This book deals with disability and assisted suicide.
This unforgettable novel will make you laugh, cry, and reflect on the value of life and love. It is a must-read for anyone who enjoys an emotionally resonant love story with a message that will stay with you long after reading.
10. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is a quirky and heartwarming novel about a socially awkward woman named Eleanor. She struggles to connect with people but finds unexpected friendship and love.
Like One Day in December, the book tackles loneliness, isolation, and mental illness with sensitivity and empathy. Honeyman portrays Eleanor’s struggles with depression and anxiety, and she deftly explores how trauma can shape a person’s life and relationships. The novel also celebrates the power of human connection and the transformative effect of kindness and empathy.
These books share similar themes, writing styles, and emotional resonance. They may explore love, friendship, loss, and self-discovery themes and feature well-developed characters who are easy to root for. If you enjoyed “One Day in December,” you may consider picking up other books that offer a similar reading experience.
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