Quiz: Which Romantasy Book Should I Read First?

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Alison Doherty is a writing teacher and part time assistant professor living in Brooklyn, New York. She has an MFA from The New School in writing for children and teenagers. She loves writing about books on the Internet, listening to audiobooks on the subway, and reading anything with a twisty plot or a happily ever after.

A year ago, I hadn’t even heard of the term “romantasy.” I don’t know if I’d clocked how popular this hybrid genre had become until I saw the separate category in the Goodreads Choice Awards last year. But despite only recently learning the term, I’ve become a huge romantasy reader. In fact, in the last eight months, romantasy makes up about 90% of what I’ve read. This category took over all my online and offline reader communities last year. And I don’t think it’s going to decline in popularity anytime soon.

If you are intrigued by this newest literary trend but haven’t dipped your toe in yet, this romantasy book quiz will help you figure out which title to try out first. If you already love romantasy, this quiz might recommend a newer title. Or it could just be fun to take to appease your curiosity. I included a romantasy classic that’s been popular for almost ten years, the biggest book of 2023 (in my opinion), and some other titles from this year that are more off the beaten path.

All you have to do is answer ten questions, and you will get a romantasy book recommendation. Get ready for dragon riders, sexy faeries (and fairies!), vampires, and other fantasy creatures galore!


Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros Book Cover

Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

You should read Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros. I had to include this book — not because of the popularity, but because it’s the book that has turned me into a big romantasy reader. Violet is the daughter of a powerful general in the dragon-riding army. But she spent her childhood expecting to become a scribe due to a disability that gives her chronic pain and makes her bones extra fragile. Then, at twenty, her mother forces her to try out for dragon riding school — facing a deadly series of challenges where other students and dragons alike are dangerous and most don’t survive. Her perceived weakness and her successful mother put an extra target on Violet’s back, especially from Xaden, a wing leader at school and the child of a rebellion leader with a grudge against her mother. This is the book to start with if you want to talk about your newest read with lots of other people or get totally swept away in an exciting and romantic story. If you’re like me, you’ll read it twice and then jump quickly to the sequel Iron Flame.

Book cover of A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. MaasBook cover of A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

You should read A Court of Thorns and Rose by Sarah J. Maas. This book is almost ten years old, but it feels like new readers are still discovering and raving about it all over the Internet. It’s a very sexy Beauty and the Beast retelling set in a fae world. Feyre lives in a world where humans and faeries are separated by a giant wall. But when she kills a magical wolf, she becomes a captive of Tamlin — an immortal faery with a terrible curse on him. Feyre finds herself fitting into the fae world much more than she ever did with humans. But she must find a way to break Tamlin’s curse and stop the spread of evil across her new land. Otherwise, she’ll lose her new love and life forever. If this book doesn’t turn you into a Romantasy reader, then the sequel A Court of Mist and Fury almost definitely will. I’m swooning just thinking about it!

Trial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J. Tuli Book CoverTrial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J. Tuli Book Cover

Trial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J. Tuli

You should read Trial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J. Tuli. This romantasy novel mixes in some strong dystopian elements, perfect for anyone who was a fan of The Hunger Games. Lor has spent the last twelve years suffering with her siblings in a dark and dangerous prison. She is unexpectedly freed, without explanation. And now she’s expected to compete against nine other women to become the sun queen. She has four trials to survive and make Atlas, the sun king, fall in love with her. If she succeeds, she can save her family and work on getting the revenge she desperately wants after her years in prison. If she fails, she will either perish or face a fate worse than death.

the emperor of endless palace book coverthe emperor of endless palace book cover

The Emperor and the Endless Palace by Justinian Huang

You should read The Emperor and the Endless Palace by Justinian Huang. This book came out just a few months ago, but it’s already getting a lot of buzz from romantasy readers. In three timelines, from 4 BCE and 1740 in China to the present day in Los Angeles, two men are born and reborn only to find themselves intensely bound by love again and again. Huang weaves these different timelines and seemingly disparate stories together expertly. Drawing from Chinese folklore and mythology, a powerful fantasy romance emerges that is both erotic and literary. If you want a romantasy story that is more current and off-the-beaten-path, then this is a great one to start with!

Hunt on Dark Waters by Katee Robert Book CoverHunt on Dark Waters by Katee Robert Book Cover

Hunt on Dark Waters by Katee Robert

You should read Hunt on Dark Waters by Katee Robert. This portal fantasy is full of action, adventure, and (of course) romance. Evelyn is a bisexual witch who is on the run from her vengeful vampire ex. While jumping through different realms trying to escape, Evelyn ends up the captive of a crew of magic pirates led by Bowen, their telekinetic captain. He rescues her and she vows to join the crew in order to save herself. Neither expect to be so attracted to each other. But there are plenty of reasons they shouldn’t get together: the danger in the waters they patrol, the danger from Evelyn’s ex, and the fact that Evelyn never planned to actually keep her vows and stay with the ship. But if she betrays the crew, both she and Bowen will face a deadly peril.

cover of Faebound by Saara El-Arificover of Faebound by Saara El-Arifi

Faebound by Saara El-Arifi

You should read Faebound by Saara El-Arifi. In this world’s mythology, elves were tied to the moon, fae came from the sun, and humans were connected with the earth. But no one has seen anyone but other elves in a millennium. And the elves have been in a massive civil war since warrior Yeeran and her sister Lettle have been alive. When Yeeran makes a mistake, she is banished from the Elven lands, and Lettle decides to go with her, along with Rayan (another soldier in Yeeran’s unit). They find themselves in the court of the fae — a world they never could have imagined. In this lush and seductive new society, all three will find their loyalties tested as they try to survive their new lives.

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