15 Young Adult Enemies To Lovers Books You Must Read

YA Romance

The “enemies-to-lovers” trope is popular in young adult (YA) literature. It involves two characters who initially dislike each other or are in opposition for some reason, but throughout the story, they develop romantic feelings for one another. This trope involves a lot of tension, banter, and character development.

YA novels focus on coming-of-age stories, and the “enemies to lovers” trope can showcase significant character growth as they face their feelings, misconceptions, and personal biases. These books explore essential themes like trust, understanding, communication, and overcoming prejudice or misunderstandings. The themes are universal and can resonate with readers of all ages.

15 Young Adult Enemies To Lovers Books (YA Romance)

Like other subgenres in romance, “enemies to lovers” in the YA category allows us to escape reality and immerse ourselves in a world of intense emotions, challenges, and satisfying resolutions. The YA literature community is active and engaging. Reading these books can open doors to book clubs, online discussions, fan art, and fan fiction, enhancing the reading experience.

Most of the relationships start with hating or bullying each other. This type of relationship is so strong because both couples know and accept each other’s negative behavior. I will talk about 15 young adult enemies to lovers books for you. They can serve as a backdrop to explore topics like bullying, peer pressure, societal expectations, etc. Let’s go!

The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. JensenA cunning princess is trained to marry and kill the king of a rival kingdom, but alliances and feelings shift, leading to unexpected loyalties and betrayals.Political intrigue, arranged marriage, betrayal, hidden identity, slow burn romance, moral dilemma, kingdom rivalry.
Mating the Huntress by Talia HibbertA fierce huntress from a family of werewolf hunters is irresistibly drawn to a man who is, ironically, a werewolf.Fated mates, enemies to lovers, supernatural romance, forbidden love, family legacy, protective alpha male, strong female protagonist.
Lady Sophia’s Lover by Lisa KleypasA determined woman seeks revenge by seducing a prominent Bow Street Runner but falls genuinely in love with him.Revenge to love, historical romance, law enforcement hero, strong-willed heroine, redemption, secrets and scandals, emotional healing.
Phoenix Unbound by Grace DravenA resilient woman, destined to be sacrificed to the gods, forms an unlikely alliance with a disillusioned gladiator, leading them both on a journey of rebellion, freedom, and love.Fantasy romance, forced proximity, slow burn, dark magic, rebellion and resistance, sacrifices, gladiator hero.
A Promise of Fire by Amanda BouchetA powerful soothsayer with a hidden past is kidnapped by a warlord prince, leading to a tumultuous journey filled with magic, gods, and a romance that defies their world’s boundaries.Fantasy romance, hidden identity, magic users, fated mates, gods and mythology, warrior prince, kidnapped heroine.
Well Met by Jen DeLucaA young woman gets roped into participating in a small-town Renaissance Faire, clashing with the event’s uptight organizer, only to find sparks flying both in and out of their period costumes.Contemporary romance, small-town setting, fake relationship (in Ren Faire roles), personal growth, community bonding, opposites attract.
The Unhoneymooners by Christina LaurenAfter their siblings’ wedding leads to a food-poisoning disaster, two rivals go on the nonrefundable honeymoon trip together, leading to unexpected romance amidst comedic mishaps.Fake relationship, forced proximity, contemporary romance, luck and misfortune, opposites attract, mistaken identity.
From Lukov with Love by Mariana ZapataA struggling figure skater reluctantly partners with her lifelong adversary for a pairs competition, leading to intense training sessions, buried secrets, and a love she never saw coming.Sports romance (figure skating), slow burn, forced partnership, grumpy-sunshine dynamic, personal growth, second chances.
The Simple Wild by K.A. TuckerA city girl travels to remote Alaska to reconnect with her estranged father, only to clash with a rugged pilot, sparking a challenging and passionate love against the backdrop of the Alaskan wilderness.Opposites attract, city girl meets country boy, contemporary romance, enemies to lovers, coming-of-age, family reconciliation, fish out of water, rugged setting.
Vicious by V. E. SchwabTwo brilliant college roommates discover the secret to obtaining superhuman abilities, leading them down a dark path of rivalry, revenge, and a morally complex battle over the nature of power.Anti-heroes, superpowers, moral ambiguity, non-linear narrative, frenemies, revenge plot, scientific experimentation, resurrection.
Violent Delights by Jessica HawkinsAmidst a dangerous Chicago underworld, a woman finds herself caught between loyalties when she becomes involved with the son of a rival mafia family, igniting a passionate affair that threatens to consume them both.Forbidden romance, mafia romance, contemporary romance, family loyalty vs. personal desires, love triangle, danger and suspense, dark romance.
Hate to Want You by Alisha RaiOnce passionate lovers, now estranged, a woman and man from feuding families secretly meet once a year for a night of passion, until circumstances bring them back to their hometown and force them to confront their tumultuous past and undeniable lingering feelings.Second chance romance, contemporary romance, family feud, secrets and scandals, tortured hero, strong-willed heroine, emotional baggage.
Bad Boys Break Hearts by Micalea SmeltzerA young woman returns to her hometown to escape her painful past, only to cross paths with the town’s notorious bad boy, leading to a whirlwind romance filled with challenges, emotions, and personal growth.Bad boy hero, small-town romance, second chance, emotional healing, contemporary romance, past trauma, opposites attract, love and redemption.
Talon by Carian ColeA traumatized young woman finds unexpected solace and healing in her relationship with a man who’s been her silent protector since childhood, despite the challenges and secrets that surround their bond.Age gap, protector hero, contemporary romance, tortured hero and heroine, childhood connection, slow burn, emotional healing, family dynamics.
Mr Masters by T L SwanA flight attendant’s world turns upside down when she has a one-night stand with a mysterious and dominant stranger, only to discover he’s her new boss, leading to a provocative and complicated relationship.Boss-employee romance, contemporary romance, one-night stand, dominant hero, secrets and lies, power dynamics, forbidden attraction, emotional twists.
Young Adult Enemies To Lovers Books List

1. The Bridge Kingdom

This book follows a girl (Lara) who has been training her whole life to kill off the king of a rival kingdom. Lara marries him all with the plot to kill him, and he has no idea. There are sub-tropes under enemies to lovers, where one is pretending to be in a relationship with the other to get close to or kill them.

The angst that it gives is on another level. King Aren has 13 daughters, and no one knows about these daughters. Everybody thinks he has one daughter. Everybody thinks this daughter is being raised in secret so no one can assassinate her, not to create a rift between these two kingdoms, building an alliance through this marriage.

Lara knows he’s roughly her age and became king after his parents died. So she gets sent into the kingdom to infiltrate them and her whole life. She has been told that the Bridge Kingdom is terrible, that they control their lives, and that her country suffers from the rich kingdom. So, she believes these people are demons. This book has a lot of fun banter with slow-burn enemies-to-lovers romance between these two characters.

The Bridge Kingdom

Author: Danielle L. Jensen
Average Rating: 4.4/5
Category: Coming of Age Fantasy
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Audio CD

2. Mating the Huntress (Monsters and Mates)

This is a paranormal romance about a werewolf and a werewolf hunter. So our heroine (Chastity) is a werewolf hunter, ready to get her first kill. She wants to prove to her family that she can be a hunter. This very attractive werewolf in town has been flirting with her. Also, she allows him (Luke) to ask her on a date and uses this date as an opportunity to go and kill him.

Luke is very blissfully unaware. He loves her head over heels because she is his mate. So not only do we have enemies to lovers trying to murder his aspect, but we also have faded mates. Luke doesn’t understand a lot of human traits. So he’s very blissfully unaware of a lot of stuff going on.

Mating the Huntress

Author: Talia Hibbert
Average Rating: 4.4/5
Category: Paranormal Erotica
Available: Paperback | Kindle

3. Lady Sophia’s Lover (Bow Street Series)

This is a historical romance about a girl (Sophia) whose brother was sent to prison, and he was either executed or died in prison. So Sophia has set out on a mission to get revenge on the lawyer who sent her brother to prison. She applies to be his (Ross Cannon) assistant and starts a little life flirtation and romance with him to get close to him and destroy his life.

So it’s slightly less extreme because she’s not like trying to kill him. But it still has enemies on one side because Ross has no clue who she is and doesn’t like him.

Lady Sophia's

Author: Lisa Kleypas
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Victorian Historical Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Mass Market Paperback

4. Phoenix Unbound (Fallen Empire)

This one’s more on the mutual enemies-to-lovers side than the others, but it’s still more one-sided. So this is a fantasy romance about a gladiator and a witch. The Gladiator kidnaps the witch to take her (Gilene) home to reclaim his (Azarion) status as a clan leader. But for some reason, he needed her to help him regain his rightful place as clan leader.

So Azarion kidnapped Gilene, and they journeyed to his homeland. Since he kidnapped her, she does not like him. She’s upset about it, but he has no problem with her. He wants her and finds her attractive. So it’s still more one-sided, even though they’re working against each other the whole book. It is because she’s trying to escape, and he’s trying to keep her.

Phoenix Unbound

Author: Grace Draven
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Fantasy Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle

5. A Promise of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles)

This fantasy romance has a similar plot where a guy (Griffin) is a warlord. He kidnaps the main character because she (Catalia) is a clairvoyant and can tell when people are lying, and that’s a useful skill. So he uses this magical rope to tether them together, and the rope can’t be broken. So the whole book, they’re tied together with this rope, and she is so pissed off about it.

You can imagine the number of things that happen because they’re tied together with the entire book. So, these will not necessarily hate each other. They got off on the wrong foot. Some miscommunication caused them to have bad impressions of each other. So they consider each other rivals in that aspect. But there’s no deep-rooted hate. None of them have done anything terrible to the other.

A Promise of Fire

Author: Amanda Bouchet
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Greco-Roman Myth & Legend Fantasy
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Mass Market Paperback | Kindle | Audio CD

6. Well Met

This is about a girl who is participating in a rent fair. When she goes to sign up for the rent fair, she gets a bad first impression of the guy who runs the fair, and they immediately don’t hit it off. They’re very different. But during the fair, they play characters since they’re working it. Her character is a tavern wench, and his character is a pirate captain.

So while they’re acting in the fair, they’re flirting with each other, have great banter, and kiss. Once the fair’s over, they’re back to not getting along. The Rent-Faire vibe is one of the most fun settings in enemies-to-lovers romance.

Well Met

Author: Jen DeLuca
Average Rating: 4.3/5
Category: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle

7. The Unhoneymooners

This one is about two people who were the maid of honor and the best man at a wedding. Everyone at the wedding other than them got sick and got food poisoning. So the bride and groom gift them with this honeymoon to Hawaii.

They go on this honeymoon together but don’t like each other. They had a bad first impression and didn’t get along. So they have to go on this honeymoon and pretend to be a couple. It is one of the best enemies-to-lovers relationship novels I have ever read.

The Unhoneymooners

Author: Christina Lauren
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Humorous American Literature
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Audio CD

8. From Lukov with Love

We’re following two professional ice skaters. Lukov is the main character’s best friend’s brother and the best male ice skater. He does pair skating, and his partner got injured. So, he needs a new partner and asks the main character to be his new partner. Moreover, she’s very reluctant to do it because she dislikes him.

They must be hair-skating partners, even though they don’t get along. There was such a drawn-out, slow-burn tension. So, you see them go from rivals not liking each other to friends, then to lovers.

From Lukov with Love

Author: Mariana Zapata
Average Rating: 4.6/5
Category: Sports Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle

9. The Simple Wild

This follows a girl (Calla Fletcher), a lifestyle fashion blogger who has had an estranged relationship with her father her whole life. She discovers he is dying, so she travels to Alaska to see him before he dies. She gets picked up by a guy (Jonah) at the airport in a rugged, lumberjack Alaskan wilderness. She’s standing there, fashionista ready for an Instagram photoshoot, and they don’t hit it off.

They’re so different, and they immediately don’t like each other. Jonah tries to make her life hard, like he is not nice to her. He does things that make her life so much harder, and they don’t get along. Then, throughout the book, they learn more about each other and realize they had the wrong first impressions. The Snowden trope is where they get snowed in somewhere and stuck, and they can’t leave.

The Simple Wild

Author: K.A. Tucker
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Women’s Domestic Life Fiction
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle

10. Vicious (Sinners of Saint)

Emilia and Vicious are characters who genuinely hate each other, or one or both have done bad, unforgivable things to the other. They want the toxic. So, this is about two characters who did not get along in high school. Vicious was very rich, coming from a wealthy family, and Emilia’s family worked for them. Her mother was the maid, and her father was the groundskeeper. Also, they lived in the servant’s area of the house or on the property.

There was a misunderstanding and miscommunication, which caused Vicious to hate the girl. He made it his life’s mission in high school to make her life miserable. Towards the end of high school, he ran her out of town, and Emilia moved away. She never looked back, and now, ten years later, she cares for her sister, who has some medical problems. She lost her job there. They have no money for rent, and she runs into this guy.

Vicious finds out about her financial situation and offers her a job as his assistant. She is very reluctant about it because of how horrible he was to her in high school and how he ruined her life and made her leave town. But Emilia is desperate for money, so she takes a job and is now working as his assistant. There’s a lot of hatred and animosity between both of them. So, there’s a lot of history and drama between them where you see unique enemies to lovers romance.


Author: V. E. Schwab
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Paranormal & Urban Fantasy
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Audio CD

11. Violent Delights (White Monarch)

This is a cartel romance, so the cartel boss’s daughter is the main character. When Natalia was young, her father had a rival cartel boss murdered and then took in that guy’s two sons and raised them. They worked for him. When she was young, she walked in on the older son standing over her mother’s dead body, and he held her at gunpoint and used her to escape. It’s always been very traumatizing to her.

Natalia has nightmares about it. Then he comes back into their lives. For some reason, her father has forgiven him and believes that he’s not the one who killed her mom. Moreover, she’s very suspicious about it because she still believes that he’s the one who killed her mom. After all, she walked in on them. But she’s also dating his brother. So, there are many layers of complexity, drama, and hatred.

Violent Delights

Author: Jessica Hawkins
Average Rating: 4.4/5
Category: Family Saga Fiction
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle

12. Hate to Want You (Forbidden Hearts)

This follows two families who have been connected and close for many generations. The grandfathers started this big business together. Every generation has been very close, and the main character and the guy dated in high school. They were high school sweethearts and in love. Then something tragic happened. There was an accident where his mother and her father died. In addition, this caused a huge rift between the two families.

Secrets came out that caused everybody to start hating each other. The couple broke up like he broke her heart, and there was a fire, and somebody else died. There were a lot of backstories, drama, history, and horrible things between these two families. The girl ran away from her home. But every day on her birthday for ten years, she would text the guy her coordinates, and they would meet and have one night together. Then, they do not speak for the other 364 days of the year.

At the start of the book, she moves back home, and suddenly, she has to confront all the stuff that happened in the past. They still profited after everything went down, and her family lost everything.

Hate to Want You

Author: Alisha Rai
Average Rating: 4.2/5
Category: Multicultural & Interracial Romance
Available: Audiobook | Mass Market Paperback | Kindle | MP3 CD

13. Bad Boys Break Hearts (The Boys)

It follows a girl (Aurora) who goes to college, and when she’s there, she meets this boy (Mascen Wade), who she remembers from her childhood as her best friend. She had to move away when she was younger, so she lost touch with him. But they don’t get along after communicating when they meet again on campus years later.

Mascen is very mean towards her, and Aurora doesn’t know why. So the story unfolds in that way, very typical YA enemies to lovers. There isn’t anything super new or super original about this plot.

Bad Boys Break Hearts

Author: Micalea Smeltzer
Average Rating: 4.4/5
Category: Sports College Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle

14. Talon (Ashes & Embers)

This is a part of the Ashes of Ember series. However, you do not have to read this whole series to read this book. It can 100 percent be read as a stand-alone, so keep that in mind. This book follows two people who end up participating in a social experiment where they list things about themselves. Then, they get paired with somebody to get married.

It’s a bunch of psychologists taking notes and seeing their interactions. So, it’s for an experiment. They don’t have anything in common, and they do not get along. It’s not necessarily the enemies to lovers where they’re mean to each other, but there’s no romance happening until a little later in the book. So, for that reason, it falls under the enemies-to-lovers trope.


Author: Carian Cole
Average Rating: 4.7/5
Category: Contemporary Romance
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Kindle | Audio CD

15. Mr Masters (Mr. Series)

This book is about a girl (Brielle) who moves to the UK to become a live-in nanny and thinks she will work for a single mother. She realizes that a single father and his two kids moved from Australia when she arrived. It’s not like she will let that tear her plans, so she does move in. But she does not get along well with this man and has a rough, rocky job start.

Brielle has to decide what to do with that. The book goes like that and they live together. It has that enemies-to-lovers situation where they don’t get along initially, but it starts to evolve, or they start to like each other. There’s a lot of good tension in this book.

Mr Masters

Author: T L Swan
Average Rating: 4.6/5
Category: Family Life Fiction
Available: Paperback | Kindle

5 Enemies To Lovers College Romance Books

The “enemies to lovers” trope is a favorite among many romance readers, and combining it with the college setting adds another layer of tension, drama, and relatability. Here are five popular “enemies to lovers” college romance novels:

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne: Though not set in college, it’s a classic in the “enemies to lovers” trope. Lucy and Joshua share an office and seemingly hate each other, engaging in various passive-aggressive games. However, their dynamic begins to shift, leading to unexpected feelings.

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire: Abby Abernathy tries to escape her dark past by starting fresh in college. She meets Travis Maddox, a charismatic bad boy involved in underground fighting. Initially, their relationship is tense and filled with challenges, but the dynamics shift as they get to know each other better.

The Deal by Elle Kennedy: Part of the ‘Off-Campus’ series, this book focuses on Hannah Wells and Garrett Graham. Hannah is uninterested in dating, while Garrett needs help passing a class. They strike a deal to help each other, but their initial animosity slowly becomes deeper.

Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas: Misha and Ryen are pen pals who’ve never met. They’ve been writing to each other for years and have a deep connection. However, they’re at odds when they meet in person without realizing each other’s true identity. The college setting and their antagonistic relationship make for an intense and emotional read.

Hate to Love You by Tijan: The story follows Shay Coleman, a college football star, and Kennedy Clarke, a woman determined to keep her distance from him. Their initial animosity is evident, but the lines between love and hate blur as the story unfolds.

5 Enemies To Lovers Books Kindle Unlimited

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne: Lucy and Joshua share an office and an intense mutual dislike. But their dynamic shifts when they find themselves competing for a promotion.

From Lukov with Love by Mariana Zapata: Jasmine and Ivan are figure skaters who can’t stand each other. Their icy relationship thaw when they’re paired up for a competition.

Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas: Misha and Ryen are pen pals who’ve never met and share everything. However, their real-life relationship is more contentious when they cross paths without knowing each other’s true identities.

Hate Notes by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward: Charlotte finds a beautiful wedding dress with a compelling note sewn in, leading her to its previous owner’s (Reed) company and a tumultuous relationship.

The Wall of Winnipeg and Me by Mariana Zapata: Vanessa, an assistant, and Aiden, a professional football player, have a professional relationship fraught with tension, but things change when Aiden asks her for a favor that brings them closer.

5 Funny Enemies To Lovers Books

Here are five enemies-to-lovers books that incorporate humor:

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne: Lucy and Joshua share an office and are in a constant battle of one-upmanship. Their love-hate relationship, filled with witty banter, takes a turn when a promotion is up for grabs.

You Deserve Each Other by Sarah Hogle: Naomi and Nicholas are set to get married, but neither wants to go through with it. The problem? Neither wants to be the one to call off the wedding and foot the bill. A hilarious game of one-upmanship ensues to get the other to break first.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren: Olive and Ethan have always been adversaries. However, when the wedding party gets food poisoning (except for them), they must go on the honeymoon together. This humorous romantic tale follows their adventures as they pretend to be newlyweds.

Well Met by Jen DeLuca: Emily and Simon clash at a Renaissance Faire where Simon takes his role very seriously, and Emily is just trying to help her family. The witty banter and comedic situations in a Ren Faire setting add to the charm of this romance.

To Hate Adam Connor by Ella Maise: Lucy and Adam are neighbors, and their initial interactions are anything but pleasant. But as they keep crossing paths, the humor-filled banter leads to undeniable chemistry.

These books offer a combination of emotional depth, engaging storytelling, and themes that resonate with young adults and those young at heart. They can provide a nostalgic look back at youth and a fresh perspective on the challenges and joys of growing up and finding love.

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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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