5 Best Colleen Hoover Books Fans Say Are Worth Reading

Whether you’re a seasoned reader who’s devoured every Colleen Hoover novel or a newcomer curious to dive into her world of captivating characters and heart-wrenching stories, this guide is for you. Hoover, known for her ability to weave tales of love, loss, and resilience, has become a literary phenomenon. But with so many amazing books to choose from, where do you begin? This list will navigate you through the best Colleen Hoover books, highlighting must-reads, and all the angsty feels you crave. StudyFinds visited 10 of the leading expert websites to find the best Colleen Hoover books most frequently recommended by reviewers. Based on these rankings, we’ve compiled a list of her top five novels to date. Enjoy and leave your own suggestions in the comments section at the bottom of the page!

1. “It Ends With Us” (2016)

Colleen Hoover was already well-known in the literary world when “It Ends With Us” was published in 2016, but this is the book that put her on the map for readers everywhere. The story centers around Lily Bloom, a young woman who, after starting her own business in Boston, falls for a neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid. As their relationship deepens, Lily’s past and the memories of her first love return, challenging her newfound happiness and leading her to confront the difficult cycle of domestic violence.

Reviewers collectively underscore Hoover’s ability to craft a narrative that is both profoundly touching and challenging, offering readers a nuanced exploration of love, abuse, and resilience.

"It Ends With Us" (2016)
“It Ends With Us” (2016)

The Reading List calls the book a “heartbreaking novel that is impossible to put down until you’ve finished it.” Critics say the novel is honest, brave, and tender. “Hoover skillfully delves into the complexities of real-life decisions and the challenges of following through on one’s convictions, especially in matters of the heart,” says Comprable’s Sarah Bearup. “The narrative unfolds swiftly, characterized by straightforward writing that may lack complexity but is undeniably compelling, keeping readers hooked throughout the story.”

2. “Verity” (2021)

In 2021, fans of Colleen Hoover were surprised to see her venture into a new genre – dark thrillers. And to no surprise, the book was every bit of a page-turner as her previous work. In “Verity,” struggling writer Lowen Ashleigh is offered a job to complete the remaining books in a successful series by renowned author Verity Crawford, who has been incapacitated due to an accident. As Lowen sifts through Verity’s notes and unfinished manuscripts at the Crawford home, she uncovers a disturbing autobiography draft that reveals horrifying secrets about Verity, leading Lowen into a complex web of deception, ethics, and emerging attraction to Verity’s husband, Jeremy. 

"Verity" (2021)
“Verity” (2021)

The thriller explores the blurred lines between truth and fiction, and the dark depths of the human psyche. “This book seamlessly blends romance and horror,” writes The New York Post.

Critics call the thriller sensational and bone-chilling, and highlighting its gripping narrative, complex characters, and the haunting atmosphere that pervades the story. “Verity is my personal top pick, as well as my readers’ top pick, for the best Colleen Hoover book and it’s, without a doubt, also beloved by MILLIONS of readers who couldn’t put it down and were left completely flabbergasted. I read it in ONE sitting, which I never do,” writes Jules Buono.

3. “Ugly Love” (2014)

What do we all love more than a happy love story? A sad one, of course. Grab the tissues and the Ben & Jerry’s, “Ugly Love” is one of Colleen Hoover’s most well-loved, and cried over, novels. It tells the story of Tate Collins and airline pilot Miles Archer, who agree on a relationship with two simple rules: No questions about the past and no promises about the future. Their arrangement starts off without complications, but as they begin to break their own rules, they must confront painful pasts and the possibility of love that goes beyond their agreement, challenging both to consider if they’re ready to open their hearts again.

"Ugly Love" (2014)
“Ugly Love” (2014)

“When Tate and Miles meet on Tate’s path to a fresh start, they don’t particularly like each other but find there’s a physical attraction they can’t ignore. With only two rules — don’t ask about the past, and never expect a future — Tate and Miles fall into a physical relationship, but soon find the line between friendship and love is easy to blur as long-buried pain begins to resurface,” writes Business Insider

Critics call the novel heart-wrenching, messy and captivating. Most agree on the emotional weight of the story and the appeal of its romantic and dramatic elements. “As one reader wryly put it, Ugly Love is about sad people being sad together, and it’s one of those contemporary romance novels that would make a perfect indie film,” adds Reader’s Digest.

4. “November 9” (2015)

“November 9” is about Fallon and Ben, who meet by chance in Los Angeles and spend Fallon’s last day in the city together before she moves to New York. They agree to meet on the same date every year, November 9th, despite living on opposite coasts. Their annual reunions help them grow, confront personal challenges and secrets, but also test the strength and truth of their connection, leading them to question if fate or manipulation has brought them together.

Credited for being a unique and refreshing take on relationships, reviewers praise the dual point of view narrative Hoover uses to tell the story — and the rollercoaster ride it takes you on. “While the plot is entertaining in its own right, the final plot twist will have you itching for more,” says the New York Post review.

"November 9" by Colleen Hoover
“November 9” by Colleen Hoover

Fiction Horizon calls “November 9” a “juicy read with slow-burning love infused with serendipity.” Overall, the book is loved for its emotionally rich narrative that is textbook Hoover, along with the compelling way it explores themes of love, growth, and forgiveness. “The premise is intriguing on its own, but it’s the book’s final plot twist that keeps readers clamoring for more,” says Reader’s Digest.

5. “Reminders of Him” (2022)

A story of pain, forgiveness, and a hope for the future, “Reminders of Him” has been captivating readers and spreading like wildfire ever since it was released. It follows the story of Kenna Rowan, who returns to her hometown seeking redemption and a fresh start after serving five years in prison for a tragic mistake. Struggling to rebuild her life and regain the trust of those she loves, especially the family of her late boyfriend, Kenna’s only hope is to reconnect with her four-year-old daughter, Diem. 

"Reminders of Him" (2022)
“Reminders of Him” (2022)

“It is a little different from her most famous romance novels, but it is so grippy you can’t put it down. Kenna Rowan gets out of prison after five years for a tragic mistake. She hopes to reunite with her four-year-old daughter, but everyone is in her way. The only hope comes in the form of a local bartender, Ledger Ward who has secrets of his own. They bond in grief and forgiveness,” says Fiction Horizon.

Critics call the novel heartbreaking, heartfelt and riveting. “As Kenna navigates their growing connection, she must find a way to absolve her past to create a new future for herself and her daughter. Goodreads reviewers say this is one of Colleen Hoover’s most sob-worthy stories,” adds Business Insider.

Which of Colleen’s books do you think are the best? We’d love to hear your comments, critiques, and suggestions in comments section below.

Sources used to create our list:

Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This article may contain affiliate links in which we receive a commission if you make a purchase.

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About the Author

Meaghan Babaker

Meaghan Babaker is a journalist and freelance writer previously based out of New York City while working for CBS New York, CBS Local and MSNBC. After moving to Geneva, Switzerland in 2016, she went on to write for Digital Luxury Group, The Travel Corporation and other international publications before joining the editorial team at StudyFinds.

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