10 Playful Friends With Benefits Books

Friendship Love Stories

Hello everyone! We will talk about a special kind of friendship you might find in some stories—friends with benefits. This means that in the stories, the friends help each other in extra special ways while trying to keep their friendship the same. It’s a bit like when friends decide to team up for a big school project; they plan to work together to make things easier for both of them.

These stories are fun to read because they have funny moments and cool friendships. It’s like watching a TV show where the characters have a good time, and you get to see their silly adventures. Even though the stories might start light, they can get really dramatic. This makes it exciting because you want to see what will happen next and whether the friends will stay friends or become something more. Let’s dive into these books and see these friends’ adventures and challenges!

10 Friends With Benefits Books

Friends-to-lover or friendship romances combine fun, drama, real-life issues, and lessons about relationships into one story, which makes them pretty interesting to read! These stories show different sides of relationships and how complicated they can be. They’re a way to explore feelings and choices without actually having to be in those situations. Here are ten friends-with-benefits novels you will love to read. Let’s begin!

1. Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Ugly Love presents the complexities of relationships, exploring themes of love, pain, and the harsh realities that sometimes accompany close bonds.

Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover
Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

The story follows Tate Collins and Miles Archer. Tate is a nursing student who has just moved to San Francisco, and Miles is a pilot and the brother of Tate’s brother’s best friend. They don’t exactly have a fairy tale meeting—there aren’t immediate sparks or romantic gestures. Instead, they find a kind of arrangement: Tate will have her physical needs met by Miles under the condition that she does not expect more from him emotionally. Miles has two rules: Don’t ask about his past, and don’t expect a future.

Despite the arrangement, as you might guess, things get complicated. Tate starts to feel more for Miles, but his past haunts him, and he’s not ready to give more of himself. The novel alternates between Tate’s current and Miles’s perspectives from six years earlier, slowly unveiling the reasons behind his fears of love. It also looks at the idea of unconditional love—loving someone even when it’s hard and even when they might not seem to ‘deserve’ it by conventional standards. The book shows readers that sometimes love isn’t pretty; it can be messy, complicated, and incredibly beautiful.

Colleen Hoover does an excellent job of developing her characters, particularly Miles. Through the flashbacks to his past, we understand his actions and reluctance to open his heart. While more straightforward, Tate is a relatable character who reflects the confusion and determination of someone in love with a complicated person.

Hoover’s writing is straightforward but packed with emotion. She has a way of making readers feel deeply connected to the characters’ experiences. Her use of alternating timelines effectively builds suspense and deepens the story’s emotional impact as secrets are gradually revealed. For readers who appreciate emotional depth and stories about more than only the surface-level aspects of love, Colleen Hoover’s “Ugly Love” is a compelling read.

2. Faking with Benefits by Lily Gold

This charming romantic comedy spins a tale of friendship, love, and a little bit of deception. The story is a bit mature for a 12-year-old audience, but its themes of friendship and understanding are universal. The book follows the adventures of Margo and Jasper, who pretend to be a couple for various personal advantages, only to find that their feelings might not be so pretend after all.

Faking with Benefits by Lily Gold
Faking with Benefits by Lily Gold

Margo and Jasper are best friends who have always supported each other through thick and thin. When Jasper needs a girlfriend to help him look more stable for a job promotion, Margo plays the part. In return, Jasper agrees to help Margo make her ex-boyfriend jealous, hoping he’ll realize what he’s lost.

Their plan sounds simple: pretend to be a couple, win their individual goals, and stop pretending. However, as they start to “fake” their way through dates and public appearances, the lines between what’s real and what’s pretend begin to blur. Margo and Jasper question whether their faking benefits could turn into something real.

At its heart, “Faking with Benefits” explores the themes of authenticity and self-discovery. It’s about understanding who you are and what you want out of life—not only in love but also in your personal aspirations and friendships. The story cleverly uses the “friends with benefits” trope to discuss how, sometimes, pretending to be something you’re not can lead you to discover what you need and want.

Margo and Jasper are well-crafted characters with quirks and growth arcs. Margo starts as someone unsure of her worth after a breakup, using the fake relationship to boost her confidence. Meanwhile, Jasper uses the arrangement to secure a job promotion, thinking his bachelor lifestyle hinders his career. As the story unfolds, both characters learn about self-worth, friendship, and honesty.

Lily Gold’s writing is light-hearted and humorous, which makes it a breezy and enjoyable read. The tone is upbeat, and the dialogue is snappy, filled with witty exchanges that keep readers entertained. Gold does a great job of keeping the story engaging with humorous scenarios and heartfelt moments that balance the lighter aspects of the plot.

However, the charm of the book lies in its execution. Gold breathes new life into the trope with her dynamic characters and engaging writing style. It’s a book about discovering what’s real in a world full of pretenses and finding joy in the unexpected. While the story treads on familiar ground, it does so with a freshness and energy that makes it a standout. The best thing is that life starts from the most unexpected situations, and real friendships can sometimes be the best love story.

3. My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren

This is a lively and funny book about modern dating, friendship, and the messes we make for ourselves. It’s a story meant for older readers, but at its core, it’s about friends and the silly, sometimes complicated ways they try to find love.

My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren
My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren

The book centers around Millie Morris, a professor who is excellent at being a friend but not so great at letting people see her true feelings. She hangs out with a group of male colleagues who are her best friends. They try online dating when they all need dates for a big event. Millie and her friend Reid, a professor, spend one night together but decide it should remain a secret and just a one-time thing.

However, things get twisty when Millie, struggling to connect with people online as herself, creates a fake profile and ends up matching with Reid. As they start chatting through her alter ego, things get really complicated, blending her real-life friendship with Reid and their online anonymity.

The book explores essential themes like honesty, identity, and the struggles of opening up to others. Millie uses her fake profile to express parts of herself she feels she can’t share in real life, highlighting how sometimes people feel safer behind a mask. It also looks at the consequences of those separate worlds colliding.

Her journey through the book is about learning to be honest about her feelings and embracing her true self. Conversely, Reid deals with his confusion about his feelings for Millie and his online match, not knowing they are the same person. This book does an excellent job of showing how both characters grow from their experiences and how their secrets test their friendship.

Christina Lauren’s writing is witty and fast-paced, making the book a fun and engaging read. The dialogue is sharp and funny, perfectly capturing the banter between close friends. Using online messages in the narrative is a clever touch that adds a modern twist to the romance and drama. The book is also a bit predictable for those familiar with romantic comedies, but the journey and the character dynamics make it shine rather than just the plot twists.

4. Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Ava is strong and independent but also vulnerable due to her past losses. Initially unlikable and abrasive, Caleb is shown to have deeper layers as his backstory unfolds. The development of their characters is central to the book’s plot, emphasizing how their relationship catalyzes personal growth and self-reflection.

Fight or Flight by Samantha Young
Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

This romance novel spins a tale about overcoming differences and finding common ground in unexpected places. It’s a story about two people who start off disliking each other immensely but learn through various twists and turns that first impressions aren’t always right. This book is meant for an older audience, but its themes of understanding and reconciliation are something everyone can appreciate.

After attending a funeral in Phoenix, Ava Breevort wants to get back home to Boston. However, her return trip turns into a nightmare when she meets Caleb Scott, a Scotsman who is both rude and infuriating. They had a terrible first meeting, but fate seemed to have other plans, as circumstances kept throwing them back together. From a shared emergency flight back to Boston to finding out they live surprisingly close to each other, Ava and Caleb start on the wrong foot but slowly change their opinions about each other.

Both Ava and Caleb carry baggage from their pasts that affect how they see the world and interact with others. The story explores how they cope with these issues and how their unexpected relationship impacts their lives. The novel also shows that sometimes, the person you least expect becomes the one who understands you the most. It’s about giving people a second chance in terms of relationships and allowing oneself to heal and embrace happiness again.

5. The Deal by Elle Kennedy

Hannah is a music major with her eyes set on a guy who doesn’t know she exists, and Garrett is the star player on the college hockey team, struggling to keep his grades up to maintain his athlete status. They strike a deal: Garrett will help Hannah win her crush’s attention if she helps him pass his ethics class. What starts as a simple agreement to help each other with their immediate needs turns into a deep and complex relationship that neither Hannah nor Garrett anticipated.

The Deal by Elle Kennedy
The Deal by Elle Kennedy

Given its mature themes and setting, this book is aimed at older teens and young adults, but its core message about overcoming personal struggles and finding common ground is universally resonant. Both main characters face personal challenges: Hannah is dealing with the emotional aftermath of a traumatic event, while Garrett is trying to meet the pressures and expectations of being a top athlete. The novel beautifully explores how their partnership helps them face their demons and grow stronger, both together and individually.

I love Hannah’s resilience and determination, which make her a relatable and inspiring figure. At the same time, Garrett’s journey from a seemingly superficial jock to a thoughtful partner adds depth to his character. Their relationship facilitates their growth, which provides a safe space for them to confront their vulnerabilities and fears. The dialogue is sharp and filled with witty exchanges that provide both humor and insight into the characters’ minds. Kennedy’s ability to balance light-hearted banter with serious topics makes it entertaining and thought-provoking.

6. Blurred Lines by Lauren Layne

“Blurred Lines” is a playful and engaging story about friendship, love, and the moments when the two intertwine unexpectedly. The novel explores the relationship between two best friends who decide to blur the lines between platonic friendship and romance. Although the story’s romantic themes aim at an older audience, it still carries universal lessons about understanding and respecting emotional boundaries.

Blurred Lines by Lauren Layne
Blurred Lines by Lauren Layne

The story centers on Parker and Ben, who have been best friends since college and now share an apartment in New York City. They have a comfortable friendship, understanding each other perfectly and supporting one another through life’s ups and downs. When Parker’s long-term relationship ends, she proposes an idea to Ben that might seem shocking: Why not turn to each other to fulfill their romantic needs without the complications of a real relationship?

They plan to keep things casual and help each other while maintaining their friendship. However, as they face this new relationship aspect, they begin developing deeper feelings that complicate their initial arrangement. The story delves into how Parker and Ben deal with these changing dynamics and the challenges that arise when friendship and romance collide.

Lauren Layne uses the friendship-to-lovers trope to show how, sometimes, the best relationships stem from a deep, foundational friendship. The story prompts us to think about what happens when we cross lines and whether some lines should be crossed at all.

7. Icebreaker by Hannah Grace

Icebreaker is an enthralling young adult novel that combines the excitement of ice hockey with the warmth of unexpected friendships and budding romance. Set against the backdrop of a high school, the story provides a unique look at sports, teamwork, and personal growth. Aimed primarily at teenagers, its themes are easily appreciated by readers of all ages, including younger ones who enjoy tales of friendship and overcoming challenges.

Icebreaker by Hannah Grace
Icebreaker by Hannah Grace

The protagonist, Anastasia Allen, is a high school junior who lives and breathes ice hockey. She’s a stellar player, but she faces a major hurdle: the all-boys team at her school has never had a female player, and they’re not welcoming. Fueled by her passion for the game and driven by a desire to honor her late father’s memory, Anastasia is determined to break through this ice-cold barrier.

Her efforts to join the team introduce her to Nate Hawkins, the team captain. Nate is initially reluctant about Anastasia joining the team and worried about the disruption it might cause. However, as they train together, Nate begins to see Anastasia’s dedication and skill, which challenges his preconceptions and changes the dynamics of their relationship from adversaries to allies.

Despite facing opposition and challenges, Anastasia’s journey is about not giving up. Her resilience in pursuing her goals inspires those around her.
The evolution of the relationship between Anastasia and Nate highlights how initial misunderstandings can turn into supportive friendships.

So, it effectively combines action with emotion, making it a compelling read for anyone interested in stories of friendship, romance, personal triumph, and the power of persistence. This heartwarming, inspiring tale scores big-time in delivering both entertainment and inspiration.

8. Rule Number Five by Jessa Wilder

Twelve-year-old Emily and her best friend Marco live in the small, seemingly ordinary town of Willow Creek. However, they soon discover that their town holds secrets tied to a mysterious old legend involving a hidden treasure. When they stumble upon an ancient map in Marco’s attic, the friends set out on a treasure hunt, guided by five crucial rules written by Marco’s grandfather.

Rule Number Five by Jessa Wilder
Rule Number Five by Jessa Wilder

Rule Number Five is the most important: “Never go alone.” As they decipher clues and solve puzzles, Emily and Marco learn the importance of sticking together, especially when the journey becomes more dangerous than anticipated. Their adventure brings them face-to-face with shady characters and tests their courage and friendship.

This enchanting tale blends adventure, mystery, and the power of friendship into one captivating story. While the book is aimed at young adults, its central themes about the importance of trust and bravery resonate with readers of all ages, including younger kids who love a good adventure with lots of heart.

As Emily and Marco face challenges, they realize how much they need to rely on each other’s strengths. Their development throughout the book highlights their growing confidence and deepening friendship, which blossoms as they tackle each new obstacle. The book’s mix of excitement and educational content, wrapped in the theme of friendship, makes it an excellent pick for children and early teens alike.

9. The Graham Effect by Elle Kennedy

Graham is a college football star whose life seems perfect from the outside. But beneath the surface, Graham struggles with personal demons and a reputation that he fears he’ll never escape. After a public scandal threatens to end his athletic career, he is forced to reevaluate his life and the choices that have led him to this point.

The Graham Effect by Elle Kennedy
The Graham Effect by Elle Kennedy

Enter Ryleigh, a new student and tutor assigned to help him pass his classes. Ryleigh is the opposite of Graham in many ways—studious, cautious, and not interested in the limelight. As they begin to work together, Graham finds in Ryleigh a chance to prove that he is more than the mistakes of his past. Their friendship slowly changes Graham’s outlook, showing him that redemption is possible with the help of friends who believe in you.

This compelling novel weaves themes of redemption, friendship, love, and personal transformation into a sports-centric storyline. While the novel targets young adults due to its mature themes and setting, the story’s overarching messages about change and understanding suit younger audiences who enjoy tales of growth and second chances.

For younger readers, this book offers a window into the challenges and rewards of self-improvement and the enduring power of friend-to-benefit and determination. It’s a motivational tale that encourages everyone, regardless of age, to believe in the possibility of change and the importance of supporting one another through life’s trials.

10. The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan

Anna Jones is a student who prefers to keep to herself and stay out of the spotlight. Her life suddenly turns when she meets Drew Baylor, the star quarterback of the college football team. Drew is charming and famous, the opposite of Anna in many ways. Despite her reservations, Anna finds herself drawn to Drew. Still, she is determined to keep their relationship purely physical, worried about the social repercussions and personal vulnerabilities that come with deeper involvement.

The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan
The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan

Drew, however, is looking for more than just a casual relationship. He sees something special in Anna and wants a real connection. This sets the stage for a complex dance of emotions and decisions as both Anna and Drew navigate their desires, fears, and insecurities. The story examines the challenges of accepting love when it threatens to disrupt personal barriers and life plans.

This romance novel explores the intricate dynamics of college relationships, identity, and personal growth. Set within the spirited atmosphere of college football, the story brings together Anna Jones and Drew Baylor in a mix of emotional and heartwarming encounters. Though aimed at an adult audience due to mature themes, the fundamental lessons about personal values and understanding emotions are also relevant to younger readers.

Last Words

And that wraps up our journey through the world of friends with benefits in books! We saw how these characters faced their friendships with added complications and how tricky that can be. It’s kind of like trying to juggle soccer practice and homework at the same time—it requires a lot of balance and care.

Every story allows us to see different ways people can interact and what comes out of those interactions. Thanks for exploring these unique friendships with me! Stay curious and keep turning the pages of new stories. See you next time!

Read More:

20 Friends To Lovers Books

10 One Night Stand Books

15 Brothers Best Friend Romance Books

10 Childhood Friends To Lovers Books

7 Dads Best Friend Romance Books

Writing Tips: 7 Tips To Write Friend To Lover Romance

Pauline Jackson

I like to talk about popular books. My book review inspires you to read and save time. Also, I summarize the book and give you the best lessons or ideas that can change your life. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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