This week’s Booking Through Thursday prompt asks “What’s the most romantic book you’ve ever read?” I’m tempted to be snarky and say Passion by Jude Morgan because its about the Romantic poets Byron, Shelley, and Keats, but I know that’s not what the question’s asking about, especially because Valentine’s Day was Monday.
I had to think about this one. I would not say the most romantic book I’ve ever read was a romance novel. Those are OK, but they don’t really do it for me. If we’re talking about a couple in in a novel I’d hold up as the most romantic couple, it’s probably Jamie and Claire Fraser from the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. What a romance!
On the other hand, the first book that came to mind when I read this question, and the one that seems to be my best answer to it is Possession by A.S. Byatt. I find it romantic for all the following reasons:
- The relationship between Randolph Henry Ash and Christabel LaMotte was romantic—a meeting of the minds.
- It was the first book my husband ever recommended to me. He might not know that, but I’m pretty sure it was. (Aw, mushy!)
- Victorian poetry. “Natch,” as the kids say. All that repressed passion.
- The love affair with academia, books, and poetry.
- It has a gorgeous cover, The Beguiling of Merlin by Edward Burne-Jones.