The vampire romance niche is a literary gold mine, brimming with exciting storylines, creative characters, and delightful forbidden love stories. Typically grouped into the wider paranormal romance sub-genre, readers who enjoy myth, magic, and monsters in their books will love a good vampire romance.
Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris
Charlaine Harris’s infamous thirteen-book Sookie Stackhouse series is well-loved for its addicting writing style and unique plot. It is best known for inspiring the popular HBO original True Blood series.
The first in the series, Dead Until Dark, follows the eponymous cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse who is decidedly average beyond one detail — she can read minds. Her mind reading has seriously halted her dating life until she meets Bill Compton: he’s tall, dark, and handsome, but most importantly, she can’t read a single one of his thoughts.
The catch? Bill is a vampire, and his reputation is far from pristine. Maybe he isn’t the dream boyfriend Sookie had thought he was.
You can buy Dead Until Dark here, and make sure to check out the rest of the series for more riveting paranormal reading.
Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Halfway to the Grave is the first book in the internationally bestselling ten-book Night Huntress series, which is beloved for its exciting worldbuilding and a lovable romantic duo at its center.
Meet Catherine Crawfield: she’s a half-vampire with a vengeance against the undead — in particular, her father, who she sees as responsible for ruining her mother’s life. Cat is captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and the two of them strike up a deal, working and training together instead of against each other. But trouble looms on the horizon, and their newfound partnership is about to be tested.
You can purchase Halfway to the Grave here, and be sure to check out the rest of the Night Huntress series for more chills and thrills.
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Arguably the most popular vampire romance novel written in the 21st century, Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight is universally adored by readers both young and old.
In this beloved young adult love story, Bella Swan is disheartened after a move to the small, rainy town of Forks, Washington. Her opinion is swayed when she meets the mysterious and attractive Edward Cullen, who is perfect in every way but with one big secret: he’s a vampire. When outside forces threaten to expose Edward’s vampire identity and endanger everyone he holds dear, Edward and Bella are forced to make hard decisions to protect themselves, each other, and their hearts.
You can buy Twilight here, and fans of the series will also want to check out the recently published companion novel, Midnight Sun.
Dark Lover by J. R. Ward
J. R. Ward’s twenty-one-book Black Dagger Brotherhood series has everything a good vampire romance needs: it’s suspenseful, sensual, and full of adrenaline-pumping twists.
The series debuts with Dark Lover, the story of Wrath, the last remaining purebred vampire. Wrath is on the hunt to settle a score with the slayers who killed his parents many years back, but a wrench is thrown into his plans when one of his finest fighters is killed. This fighter left behind a half-breed daughter, unaware of her own destiny, and Wrath sets out to return this woman to where she belongs. The two are drawn to each other like magnets — but dangerous secrets threaten to tear them apart.
You can purchase Dark Lover here, and prepare to fall head over heels for this alluring vampire series.
Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz
Set in the glitz and glam of New York City, Blue Bloods is a posh paranormal reading experience that you won’t be able to put down.
Protagonist Schuyler Van Allen is undergoing a frightening transformation — her veins are turning blue, and she’s experiencing unwelcome urges — all while she’s trying to navigate the ups and downs of her sophisticated private school. All of a sudden, one of Schuyler’s classmates turns up dead, and she’s determined to get to the bottom of what happened. But can she do that without putting herself in more danger?
You can buy Blue Bloods here, and there are eight more installations in the series for readers who can’t get enough of Melissa de la Cruz’s sharp writing.
A Fate of Wrath and Flame by K. A. Tucker
If you’re looking for mesmerizing worldbuilding, well-developed characters, and delicious slow-burn romance, then look no further than K. A. Tucker’s A Fate of Wrath and Flame.
Romeria is a successful thief for a crime boss in New York City when she gets plunged into another realm — one that’s full of elemental magic and fantastic species warring for a throne. In this fantasy world, Romeria has assumed the identity of a captured Ybarisan princess, betrothed to King Zander. Soon monstrous truths will come to light, and Romeria’s life — both back home, and as the elusive princess — will be threatened to the point of no return.
You can purchase A Fate of Wrath and Flame here, and prepare to be drawn into a fictional world that’s as rich and layered as your very own.
Night Pleasures by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Sherrilyn Kenyon’s gripping twenty-two-book Dark-Hunter series presents a unique twist on traditional vampire lore, combining paranormal activities with elements of Greek Mythology.
The series kicks off with Night Pleasures, which follows the story of regular accountant Amanda Devereaux and the fateful day when she wakes up tied to a Dark-Hunter named Kyrian. Amanda isn’t sure what a Dark-Hunter is, but she’s confident that he isn’t human. Even worse, the pair discovers that they were tied up by a lethal vampire who is after not only their lives but the rest of the world after them.
Amanda doesn’t trust Kyrian, and Kyrian certainly doesn’t trust Amanda, but they’re unlikely to escape hostage if they don’t find a way to work together (and fast). Mythology mystery and paranormal peril await.
You can buy Night Pleasures here, and make sure to check out the rest of the series for more mystery and madness.
King of Battle and Blood by Scarlett St. Clair
Scarlett St. Clair’s most recent book, King of Battle and Blood, was an instant bestseller following its release — and readers will understand why within the first few seductive pages.
Readers are introduced to Isolde de Lara, who is set to marry the vampire king Adrian Aleksandr Vasiliev — then kill him. Her assassination attempt goes awry, and Adrian threatens her with a fate she can’t ignore: if she tries to kill him again, he will raise her as one of the undead.
Isolde is forced into submission, and as she fights to survive in the vampire court, she’s faced with a question that will rock her world: why did Adrian choose her as his consort? And why can’t she just ignore the chemistry between them, when he is everything that she despises?
You can purchase King of Battle and Blood here, and make sure to check out its equally alluring sequel, Queen of Myth and Monsters, once you’ve finished the first.
Taken by Fate by Shannon Mayer
Hilarious modern dialogue and a heavy dose of romance line the pages of Shannon Mayer’s delightful, trope-driven novel Taken by Fate.
The book’s lead, Sienna, narrowly escapes being sold to werewolves only to suffer a fate that’s debatably even worse. She’s been taken captive by vampires and is being forced to participate in the Harvest Games, a twisted game with survival at the finish line. Sienna should be furious with her captors, and she is at first… but the General of the Vampire Army just might change her mind.
You can buy Taken by Fate here, and get ready for a slow-burn vampire romance that will have you reading long into the morning.
Reborn Yesterday by Tessa Bailey
Best known for her contemporary rom-coms, Tessa Bailey showcases her expertise in writing genre-bending romances with Reborn Yesterday, a standalone vampire novel.
Meet Ginny Lynn: she’s the director of a funeral home, who gets put into a particularly sticky situation when the man on her embalming table wakes up. Or, she thought he was a man… Jonas Cantrell is a vampire, and he is required to wipe Ginny’s memories of the embalming incident to protect his vampiric identity. But before Jonas can do that, Ginny reveals a secret that brings both their worlds to a crash.
You can purchase Reborn Yesterday here, and check out the companion novels This Time Tomorrow and Today Tomorrow and Always for more quirky vampire romance reads.
From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout
From Blood and Ash is a steamy, escapist read from the accomplished paranormal novelist Jennifer L. Armentrout.
Set in a frightening fantasy realm that’s teeming with monsters and magic, From Blood and Ash follows the story of Poppy, a woman with a life that has never been her own. With the entire kingdom resting on Poppy’s shoulders, she must choose between the future that was chosen for her and the possibility of finding love. But Poppy’s choices have bloody consequences, and the gods are unlikely to approve of the path that lies ahead.
You can buy From Blood and Ash here, and readers will also enjoy the companion Flesh and Fire series.
Blood Orange by Karina Halle
Gothic spice abounds in Karina Halle’s dark standalone romance, Blood Orange — a creative Dracula retelling that will have you flipping pages like no other.
Blood Orange tells the story of Dahlia Abernathy, whose parents were killed by vampires when she was young, leading her to study under the Witch’s Guild and learn how to slay vampires. Dahlia is sent undercover to study with and eventually kill a prestigious vampire, Professor Valtu Aminof. She was prepared for danger, but nothing could’ve prepared her for the consequences of falling for the very vampire that she was sent to kill.
You can purchase Blood Orange here, and prepare for an unputdownable reading experience.
Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
Richelle Mead’s six-book Vampire Academy series was written for young adults but has gained popularity with adult readers as well thanks to its witty writing and unique storyline.
Half-human teens and vampires meet at St. Vladimir’s Academy, a prep school for training in magic, defense, and survival. Vampire Princess Lissa and her best friend/bodyguard Rose Hathaway are quickly enmeshed in forbidden romance, dangerous rituals, and the Academy’s sparkling social scene.
You can buy Vampire Academy here, and fans of the series will also enjoy the six-book companion series called Bloodlines.
Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice
Nobody writes vampire fiction quite like the reputable Anne Rice, and Interview with the Vampire is her iconic writing at its finest.
In this classic work of paranormal fiction, a vampire by the name of Louis de Pointe lu Lac relays his centuries-long life story to a reporter. Louis was not born a vampire, but he became one — transformed by the menacing Lestat de Lioncourt — and the two begin an infamous journey full of sensual discovery and chilling loss.
You can purchase Interview with the Vampire here, and see for yourself where the vampire genre gained its popularity.
Morrigan’s Cross by Nora Roberts
Morrigan’s Cross is a well-written installation in the vampire romance genre, authored by the deeply popular Nora Roberts, and kicking off a sizzling paranormal trilogy that you won’t want to miss.
Hoyt Mac Cionaoith lost his twin brother to the allure of the vampire Lilith, who has doomed many men to a heart-stopping fate with one ill-intended kiss. Under the guidance of the goddess Morrigan, Hoyt sets out to wreak vengeance on Lilith, but he’s going to need more than just himself to bring down the cunning vampire.
You can buy Morrigan’s Cross here, and make sure to check out the supernatural sequels: Dance of the Gods and Valley of Silence.
The Vampire Diaries: The Awakening by L. J. Smith
The Vampire Diaries is more than just a hit television show: the hype all began with L. J. Smith’s entertaining four-book vampire drama, which was targeted at teen readers but maintained cross-generational appeal.
In the first book in the series, The Awakening, high school golden girl Elena Gilbert has her sights set on the mysterious Stefan Salvatore — but for reasons she doesn’t understand, he isn’t interested. Elena could never guess the real reason that Stefan is keeping his distance, which is that he is a vampire, and the closer he gets to Elena the more danger he is putting her in.
Stefan struggles to resist Elena, but things are about to get a lot worse: Stefan’s dark and handsome brother Damon is in town. And where Damon goes, trouble always follows.
You can purchase The Awakening here, and be sure to check out the rest of the series for more romantic tension and paranormal fun.
Happy Hour at Casa Dracula by Marta Acosta
Hilarious, sexy, and unputdownable: Marta Acosta’s series debut, Happy Hour at Casa Dracula, is the paranormal rom-com that readers have been waiting for.
The novel’s heroine, Milagro, is a book-loving Latina vampire who falls into serious trouble when a passionate kiss leads to an accidental infection and she starts craving blood. As if matters couldn’t get any worse, her ex tries to kidnap her right after! Being a vampire is not all it’s cracked up to be — and for Milagro, this is only the beginning of the disaster.
You can buy Happy Hour at Casa Dracula here, and prepare for a read that will have you (unsuccessfully) holding in your laughter from start to finish.
Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K. Hamilton
It’s impossible to talk about the best vampire romances without mentioning Laurell K. Hamilton’s twenty-nine book Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series. The series is a picture-perfect blend of horror, romance, and action-packed adventure, with enough suspense to keep even the most reluctant reader hooked.
The series debut, Guilty Pleasures, introduces the beloved Anita Blake: her job is to kill the undead, and vampires are dangerous territory. When she’s asked to solve a series of violent slayings, she realizes that she might be in over her head, for this next job might force her to confront her growing attraction to master vampire Jean-Claude. The only problem? Jean-Claude is on her hit list.
You can purchase Guilty Pleasures here, and you’re sure to be clamoring for the next book in the extensive series in no time.
Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite
Poppy Z. Brite’s gritty horror novel Lost Souls is an ensemble vampire tale that is as frightening as it is fantastic.
From a fateful meeting at a nightclub in North Carolina to an illicit road trip across state lines, Lost Souls follows the connections between a group of loner humans and a trio of troubled vampires. They embark on a journey in the search of power, purpose, and truth — with no end of forbidden desires and hidden truths along the way.
You can buy Lost Souls here, and prepare for a gritty, unforgettable book that will keep you up at night.
Unchained by Helen Hardt
Brooding vampire heroes and never-ending twists and turns line the pages of Helen Hardt’s five-book Blood Bond Saga, the first of which is Unchained.
Meet Erin Hamilton: she’s an ER nurse working a hectic night shift when she stumbles upon a strange man vandalizing the hospital blood bank. That man is Dante Gabriel, and he’s actually a vampire: enslaved for years to a female vampire, he finally escaped and is on the prowl for a way to sate his hunger.
The two of them have nothing in common beyond the chemistry that pulls them together. That is until Dante discovers a secret about Erin that could bring them closer to each other — or keep them apart for eternity.
You can purchase Unchained here, and you’re sure to enjoy this rousing start to the beloved vampire romance series.
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
Traditional vampire romance tropes get a fresh and funky twist in Holly Black’s young adult standalone novel, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown.
Enter a world similar to ours but with a dangerous difference: multiple walled cities known as Coldtowns exist, where humans, vampires, and everything in between run wild. Tana lives apart from the Coldtowns until she wakes up one morning surrounded by corpses, with her boyfriend infected and she knows what she has to do: to save the people she loves, she must go to the place that she fears the most.
You can buy The Coldest Girl in Coldtown here, and prepare for a riveting read that you won’t want to put down.
Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Originally published in 1872, Carmilla is one of the longest-lasting vampire romances that continues to dazzle readers to this day.
This gothic novella follows the story of Laura, a young woman who is living alone with her retired father. She longs for a companion of her age, and one day she gets her wish when a carriage accident brings the seemingly young Carmilla into Laura’s home. But Carmilla is not who she seems to be, and Laura’s health quickly begins declining as she falls prey to the vampiric allure of the cunning woman beside her.
You can purchase Carmilla here, and experience for yourself the story that started it all.
Undead and Unwed by MaryJanice Davidson
Drop-dead funny and wickedly romantic, MaryJanice Davidson’s series starter Undead and Unwed is a wild ride that book lovers won’t want to miss.
It all started when Betsy Taylor was killed in a car accident — but that’s far from the ending because no matter what happens Betsy just keeps coming back to life. When Betsy’s friends suggest that she might be the long-prophesied vampire queen, she’s unsure how to react; but in no time she has set off to overthrow a power-hungry vampire and claim her rightful throne.
You can buy Undead and Unwed here, and you’ll want to check out the next fourteen books in the series for more vampiric hijinks!
Sunshine by Robin McKinley
Robin McKinley’s Sunshine is a rewarding romantic fantasy full of troublesome vampires, page-turning mystery, and cozy small-town vibes.
Rae Seddon, affectionately known as Sunshine, is the head baker at her family’s business — and she’s in serious need of a break. She retreats to her family’s lakeside cabin for some alone time, but alone time is hard to come by when you’ve just crashed the local vampires’ latest hangout spot.
You can purchase Sunshine here, and prepare to enter a captivating world that you might not ever want to leave.
Insatiable by Meg Cabot
Meg Cabot has written a plethora of fun and inviting fantasy novels, and her foray into the vampire romance genre with Insatiable is no exception.
Meet Meena Harper: she’s gifted with the ability to see other people’s futures, yet she’s never been able to get a glimpse into her own. That explains why she doesn’t see any red flags when she meets Lucien, a man to whom she finds herself increasingly attracted. The only problem? Lucien is already dead, and he has some very powerful enemies.
You can buy Insatiable here, and be sure to check out the equally thrilling sequel Overbite for more of your reading pleasure.
Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill
Some Girls Bite is the first book in the Chicagoland Vampires series: they’re bitingly funny, action-packed, and full of spice.
Readers are introduced to Merit, a graduate student who is doing just fine until the day when a rogue vampire attacks her — and another vampire saves her life. That is, preserved her life? He transformed Merit into a vampire herself, and she is inducted into a society of vampires.
Who needs time to adjust? In no time, Merit is on high alert — not only is her rescuer, Ethan, being a royal pain, but her attacker is still after her life. Things just got complicated.
You can purchase Some Girls Bite here, and the series spans thirteen more books that you’ll be eager to check out once you finish the first.
Dark Prince by Christine Feehan
If you’re looking for a sensual, slow-burn love story paired with action-packed twists and turns, then look no further than The Dark Saga by the inimitable Christine Feehan.
The first in the series is Dark Prince, which introduces readers to a multifaceted realm of vampires, telepaths, and magic. Raven Whitney, who hunts serial killers using telepathy, hears the telepathic cries of Mikhail Dubrinsky, only to learn that he is her life mate. Can the two find each other amidst a world of danger and deception?
You can buy Dark Prince here, and be sure to check out the thirty-six books remaining in the series once you’re finished with the first.
High Stakes by Erin McCarthy
Get ready to laugh while reading Erin McCarthy’s hilarious vampire novel High Stakes, the first in the four-book Vegas Vampires series.
Ethan Carrick considers himself to be a nice guy — he’s also a vampire, a politician, and he owns a casino. As if that isn’t enough to have on his plate, he’s desperate to find somebody to be his First Lady — if only the fierce and sometimes frightening Alexis would let him have his way.
You can purchase High Stakes here, and prepare to be rooting for Ethan and Alexis’s love story before they even begin rooting for themselves.
Crave by Tracy Wolff
Tracy Wolff’s wildly popular Crave series has gained an impressive cult following, known best for its swoon-worthy romance and captivating storyline. The six-book series begins with Crave, and although written for a young adult audience, the novel has become well-loved in the new adult and adult literary communities as well.
Set inside a mysterious boarding school in Alaska, the novel’s heroine, Grace, immediately suspects that something is off about her new surroundings — and her most terrifying guesses are terribly close to the truth. Grace meets Jaxon, a vampire who hasn’t felt anything in centuries, but he is immediately drawn to her without knowing why.
The secrets that shroud Jaxon spell impending doom for Grace, but she won’t go down without a fight.
You can buy Crave here, and make sure to check out the next five books in the series for more nail-biting suspense.
A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
Rich worldbuilding and tantalizing romance make Deborah Harkness’s A Discovery of Witches an absolute must-read. This novel kicks off a bestselling series of books, as well as being the inspiration for a hit television show — so get ready to see what all the hype is about.
In A Discovery of Witches, readers are introduced to Diana Bishop, a student at Oxford who is also a descendant of witches. She chooses to ignore her abilities as a witch until her studies bring her face-to-face with magic: an enchanted manuscript she comes across opens up a whole new world.
With a vampire geneticist named Matthew Clairmont at her side, Diana sets out to explore this newly discovered underworld. Little does she know the danger that lies in wait for her, nor could she predict the consequences of what might happen when a reluctant witch and an intelligent vampire fall for one another.
You can purchase A Discovery of Witches here, and prepare to embark on a reading experience that will keep you reading late into the night.
What is the best vampire romance?
It is nearly impossible to pick just one vampire romance novel — but the above list of thirty romantic vampire stories is guaranteed to entertain you!
What is the most popular vampire?
The most popular vampire is Count Dracula, who first appeared in Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula which was written in 1897.
Are vampires sci-fi or fantasy?
Vampire novels are typically classed under the fantasy genre, although there are certainly exceptions to that rule.
What is the vampire genre called?
Vampires are considered to be supernatural, and/or paranormal. Vampires also exist in many fictional fantasy realms.
What should I read if I like vampires?
The above list of thirty vampire romance novels is perfect reading material for fans of vampires.