When I was fourteen years old, my mother gave me a Nora Roberts book to read in order to stave off the boredom of staying home sick from school. Thus began my love for all things Nora Roberts. Roberts has a way of transporting you into the story and making you care, deeply, about her characters. While I’ve been less interested in her latest works, I will always be thankful to the multitude of stories she has shared with me and thousands of others for the past thirty (!?!) years. Without further ado, here is my list of favorite works by her.
Public Secrets – A brilliant standalone novel about a woman coming to terms with the brutal murder of her brother. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve re-read this novel. It has it all – a global setting, family intrigue, fabulous friendships, and a romance to die for. Check out the synopsis below:
Emma. Beautiful, intelligent, radiantly talented, she lives in a star-studded world of wealth and privilege. But she is about to discover that fame is no protection at all when someone wants you dead…. All she has to do is close her eyes and she remembers the day Brian McAvoy swept into her life. A frightened toddler, she didn’t know then that she was his illegitimate daughter or that he was pop music’s rising new star. All she knew was that with Brian, his bandmates, and his new wife, she felt safe. And when her baby brother arrived, Emma thought she was the luckiest girl in the world…until the night a botched kidnapping attempt shattered all their lives…and destroyed Emma’s happiness. Yet now, even though Emma is still haunted by flashes of memory from that fateful night, she has survived. She’s carved out a thrilling career and even dared to fall rapturously in love. But the man who will become her husband isn’t all that he seems. And Emma is about to awaken to the chilling knowledge that the darkest secret of all is the one buried in her mind–a secret that someone may kill to keep.
True Betrayals – Another fabulous standalone novel by Roberts. Set in the world of professional horse racing, it delves into one woman’s discovery of her very much alive “dead” mother. I always pick it up around Kentucky Derby season. If you want an in-depth look at horse racing, along with a steamy romance and suspenseful action, definitely check out the synopsis below:
Kelsey Byden always believed that her mother was dead. But now, after all this time, she has discovered the truth: Naomi Chadwick is still alive–after spending years in prison for the murder of her lover. Now, at Naomi’s Virginia horse farm, Kelsey is trying to sort out a lifetime of deception–and her feelings about her mother. The bonds of love can be fragile…as Kelsey learned from her recently ended marriage. But as the two women rebuild their relationship–and Kelsey finds herself swept into an unsettling new romance–she must decide once and for all who she can trust, and who threatens to betray her?
Naked in Death – This book is the first in an ongoing series about the fabulous detective Eve Dallas set in the intriguing futuristic world of New York City. It has great characters, an intriguing plot, and one of the best romances to ever grace one of her novels. Check out the synopsis below:
In a world of danger and deception, she walks the line–between seductive passion and scandalous murder. Eve Dallas is a New York police lieutenant hunting for a ruthless killer. In over ten years on the force, she’s seen it all–and knows her survival depends on her instincts. And she’s going against every warning telling her not to get involved with Roarke, an Irish billionaire–and a suspect in Eve’s murder investigation. But passion and seduction have rules of their own, and it’s up to Eve to take a chance in the arms of a man she knows nothing about–except the addictive hunger of needing his touch.
Circle Trilogy – Roberts’ has written tons of series, but none strikes me as compelling as the Circle Trilogy. Combining multiple fantasy elements, it revolves around one old man’s retelling of the defeat a powerful vampire, Lilith, by a circle of six strangers. Each book develops the romance between different characters, but the overall plot is enhanced by each story. Check out the synopsis below:
#1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts delivers an extraordinary trilogy—an epic saga that breaks down the boundaries between reality and the otherworldly, while forging together the passions of the men and women caught in a battle for the fate of humanity. As a storm rages, the tale begins…of a powerful vampire’s lust for destruction—and of the circle of six charged by the goddess Morrigan to stop her.
Divine Evil – Another great standalone novel about an artist’s return to her hometown as she attempts to better understand her family, her art, and herself. The occult aspects of this book seriously creep me out, while the romance between the main characters are oh so sweet. Be prepared to stay up late reading this one – check out the synopsis below.
Famed sculptor Clare Kimball has commanded the attention of the New York art world, but troubling memories from childhood have drawn her home to Maryland, to the town where she grew up and where her father died so long ago in circumstances never really explained. Nothing much has changed in Emmitsboro—except Cameron Rafferty, the onetime high-school bad boy turned town sheriff. The only hint of Cam’s wild nature is the light in his eyes when he looks at Clare. In Cam’s strong arms Clare is seduced into falling in love—and into believing that her small-town world is safe. But within the dark woods of Emmitsboro, something evil is spreading its poisonous power. Now Clare must pay the price for digging up the secrets of the past . . . and confront an evil that may be unstoppable—because those who practice it believe it is divine.