Best Romance Books Set in Ireland

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Romance Books Set in Ireland

The perfect time to take a vacation and visit Ireland without ever leaving your cozy reading nook. These books will take you on beautiful romantic journeys, sometimes angsty, sometimes sweet, but always sexy.

Contemporary Romance

Devil of Dublin

by B.B. Easton

Available on Kindle Unlimited

From the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of 44 Chapters About 4 Men (inspiration for one of the most-watched Netflix series of all time) comes a dark mafia romance steeped in Irish folklore.

I can’t remember anymore if my grandfather’s eyes were blue or green, but I’ll never forget the way they wrinkled at the corners when he laughed at one of his own jokes. Or the way they sparkled with mischief when he told me tales about the magical creatures that dwelled in the forest behind his humble Irish sheep farm—shy fairies who liked to eat tea biscuits, cruel witches who liked to eat children, a moody lake spirit with a taste for expensive gifts.

As a child, I believed every fantastical word. But when he warned me about the mute boy who also lurked in those woods, the one the priest had declared to be the spawn of Satan himself, I refused to listen. Kellen wasn’t evil. He was kind, and beautiful, and special, and hurting. He was my friend. And with every summer I spent stolen away with him in those enchanted woods, he grew to become so much more.

But when I return to Glenshire as an adult, grieving and engaged to someone else, all those legends quickly morph into nightmares.

My grandfather had been right about everything, especially the boy.

If only I had listened.

Contemporary Romance

Off the Map

by Trish Doller

Trish Doller’s idyllic romance Off the Map proves sometimes a wrong turn can lead to the exact right destination.

On the road to love, you don’t need a GPS…

Carla Black’s life motto is “here for a good time, not for a long time.” She’s been traveling the world on her own in her vintage Jeep Wrangler for nearly a decade, stopping only long enough to replenish her adventure fund. She doesn’t do love and she doesn’t ever go home.

Eamon Sullivan is a modern-day cartographer who creates digital maps. His work helps people find their way, but he’s the one who’s lost his sense of direction. He’s unhappy at work, recently dumped, and his one big dream is stalled out—literally.

Fate throws them together when Carla arrives in Dublin for her best friend’s wedding and Eamon is tasked with picking her up from the airport. But what should be a simple drive across Ireland quickly becomes complicated with chemistry-filled detours, unexpected feelings, and a chance at love – if only they choose it.

Paranormal Romance

Kiss of Vengeance

by S. Young

Available on Kindle Unlimited

A standalone paranormal romance from New York Times bestselling author Samantha Young, writing as S. Young.

Fionn Mór was once a high king of Ireland; a fierce warrior who led his tribes against the invading fae. It was a war he couldn’t win and to save his family he turned consort for the Fae Queen. Fionn escaped as the thing he once despised, and the people he loved betrayed him for it. Now, centuries later, it’s time to reopen the gates to Faerie to take his revenge against the Faerie Queen.

At sixteen Rose Kelly discovered family secrets that changed her forever. Years after, she’s still lost, traveling across Europe in search of that elusive missing ‘something’. When she’s attacked by a vampire, not only is she wrenched into a supernatural underworld she never knew existed, a knock on the head releases a spell on her mind and unlocks powers beyond her wildest imaginings. And with them more questions. Questions Fionn Mór claims to have answers to.

Following the powerful and enigmatic Fionn to Ireland, Rose quickly realizes she’s a pawn in his plan for vengeance. What begins as a passionate battle of wills leads to an inexplicable but undeniable connection. One that will force them to face an impossible choice between the deepest love… and the darkest revenge.

The second book in the True Immortality series picks up on a thread that we started in the first book and it explores the fae world.  An ancient vengeance that our hero who was originally a human warrior taken as a slave by the Fae Queen and turned into fae much as he despised them.  Forced to serve the Queen for a while until he managed to escape the fae world.  Now many years later he wants revenge against the Queen who took everything from him.  His freedom, his pride, his family, his people, and even his ability to die.  The key is a fae woman who knows nothing of the supernatural world except what he chooses to tell her.

KISS OF VENGEANCE was a slow burn seduction.  Fionn Mór was the high king of Ireland.  I loved how that strong alpha personality was always present.  A bit calculating as well.  His determination to see his plan through no matter what was fierce and one of the things I liked about his character.  Feelings didn’t get in the way.   Rose was still just discovering her powers and everything about this world she knew nothing about.  Legends and her role in them, while groups of people were hunting her down supposedly to kill her.  I liked seeing her strike that balance between strong willed female lead but still doing the right thing and not having a careless attitude about the threats they faced.

When it comes to the romance, these two had plenty of chemistry.  I admit the plot might’ve started off a bit slow for me, but the chemistry between these two was there from the start.  If you are looking for a steamy book, maybe this won’t be the one.  However, these two are an excellent couple.  Again, Ms. Young gives us a fated mates story that I can get behind!  I hate the insta love aspect of fated mates stories and I’m seeing it’s not the case in these books.  It’s a slow progression that just works.

Now for the paranormal elements.  I really wanted to see more of the fae world.  Maybe some flashbacks or more stories about what it was like.  That was one of the things I was most looking forward to in this book actually, and we didn’t really dig into that here.  But I still think the danger element of these books is done well and keeps the books interesting.  They seem to always involve our characters escaping from others who want to kill them.

I’m super excited for the next book in the series and to see what we are going to explore next.  I’m sure we got a hint of that at the end of this one and I hope we head in that direction.

Reviewed by Francesca on Under the Covers Book Blog March 13, 2020

Magical Realism

Jewels of the Sun

by Nora Roberts


In Gallagher’s Pub, where the fire is burning low and the pints are waiting, #1 New York Times bestselling author Nora Roberts has a story to tell…

Determined to reevaluate her life, Jude Murray flees America to take refuge in Faerie Hill Cottage, immersing herself in the study of Irish folklore and discovering hope for the future of the magical past.

Finally back home in Ireland after years of traveling, Aidan Gallagher possesses an uncommon understanding of his country’s haunting myths. Although he’s devoted to managing the family pub, a hint of wildness still glints in his eyes—and in Jude, he sees a woman who can both soothe his heart and stir his blood. And he begins to share the legends of the land with her—while they create a passionate history of their own.

Historical Fiction

What the Wind Knows

by Amy Harmon

Available on Kindle Unlimited

An Amazon Charts, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post bestseller.

In an unforgettable love story, a woman’s impossible journey through the ages could change everything…

Anne Gallagher grew up enchanted by her grandfather’s stories of Ireland. Heartbroken at his death, she travels to his childhood home to spread his ashes. There, overcome with memories of the man she adored and consumed by a history she never knew, she is pulled into another time.

The Ireland of 1921, teetering on the edge of war, is a dangerous place in which to awaken. But there Anne finds herself, hurt, disoriented, and under the care of Dr. Thomas Smith, guardian to a young boy who is oddly familiar. Mistaken for the boy’s long-missing mother, Anne adopts her identity, convinced the woman’s disappearance is connected to her own.

As tensions rise, Thomas joins the struggle for Ireland’s independence and Anne is drawn into the conflict beside him. Caught between history and her heart, she must decide whether she’s willing to let go of the life she knew for a love she never thought she’d find. But in the end, is the choice actually hers to make?

We all have favorite authors, and probably for different reasons.  But there are those few special authors that the only way to describe their stories is beautiful, and that’s the power of a story by Amy Harmon.  I was so excited to read this story because it’s the second historical fiction novel I read by her and I just knew it would be special.  I can’t say I’ve read a ton of time travel romance, but as a fan of the TV show Outlander (I know, I should read that but I just won’t), this was the perfect book to hit the spot.

Ms. Harmon manages to craft a story that is full of history and heartache, with romance and family bonds and even a dash of magical realism if you ask me.  Because truly, WHAT THE WIND KNOWS is magical.

The heroine accidentally travels back in time to 1920s Ireland while spreading her grandfather’s ashes there at his request.  She’s very much the picture of her great grandmother who was then believed dead but nobody had been able to confirm that, so when she pops up in that time she takes on that role and pretends to be her.  As she gets to experience history first hand, she also gets to reconnect with her grandfather.  The man who raised her and that she just lost, but who is only a little boy.  And along the way, she also finds true love.

And oh what a beautiful romance this was.  I think this book has everything to satisfy both historical fiction readers and romance readers.  And I can’t help but gush about two things.  The fact that the way both timelines interconnect and things come full circle time and time again, even when it’s only the heroine who knows it.  It was so perfectly crafted.  It was those little details that made the small moments even that more special.  And then the hero.  He’s the quiet and understated type but I fell hard for him.  He’s going on my book boyfriend list, even if he may end up being under appreciated.

In the end, everything about this book was beautiful.  From the writing, to the setting, the family, the history, the characters, the romance.  I was so wrapped up in this world I didn’t want to leave.  And yes, I shed many tears.  Many, many tears.  But I was left with a satisfied smile on my face.  It’s definitely my favorite book I read in February and probably my favorite book I’ve read so far this year.  As always, I can’t wait for what Ms. Harmon will give us next.

Reviewed by Francesca on Under the Covers Book Blog March 9, 2019

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Romance Books Set in Ireland

Contemporary Romance

Her Best Laid Plans

by Cara McKenna

Experience Ireland—the dramatic beauty, the warm hospitality…and the smoking hot local guys!

Imagine nursing a pint in a cozy, authentic country pub, far from Cork’s busy city pulse. Getting here took you a plane, bus, taxi and…um, bicycle. But just as you’re resigning yourself to drinking beside grey-haired farmers, you see him—a man with the looks and charm to soothe any heartbroken girl.

He’s your bartender. Your really, really gorgeous bartender.

For American Jamie Webb—recently dumped and housesitting for two weeks—Connor Kelleher is like a six-course feast after a 23-year starvation diet. But it’s gotta be casual. She’s just begun rerouting her life after a three-year man-related detour. Still, a sexy romp (or twenty!) with Sexy McBartender?

But what happens when Jamie’s best-laid plans for no future plans with any man begin to change?

Cara McKenna delivers a fun and flirty short story that takes place in Ireland. You know what that means right? We lucky readers get a hot Irish hero!

Conner Kelleher embodies all that women hope to encounter when they go on vacation. At the bar that his family own, this is where Jamie meets Conner. Since the story isn’t very long, you can expect instant chemistry between the two. McKenna plays it safe by keeping the banter light and flirtatious. However, I really thought that romance flitted across the surface of what it could have been if it had been longer. Just as we were introduced to both Jamie and Conner, I felt that they were instantly in love. I’m hoping for slower development so readers can sit back and enjoy before the book is through.

Nevertheless, HER BEST LAID PLANS gives a taste of what Cara McKenna is capable of. If you are new to her writing or have been wishing to try one of her books but don’t know where to start, I believe this is a safe one to venture into. After all, who can resist an Irish hero who is charming AND dirty at the same time?

While too short to really delve into deeper passion, HER BEST LAID PLANS is a fun, fast romp that will entice readers and have them begging for more.

Reviewed by Annie on Under the Covers Book Blog April 16, 2014

And if you don’t know where to start, check out our beginners’ guide to Charlotte Stein here

Magical Realism

Wild Irish Heart

by Tricia O’Malley

Available on Kindle Unlimited

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Tricia O’Malley comes an enchanting romance series set on the rocky shores of Ireland. Readers are addicted to this bestselling series that transports them to a mystical town where magick and romance unite.

It is time…

An ancient book, a power untouched, and a heart unloved lead Keelin O’Brien from her graduate studies in Boston to a small village on the coast of Southern Ireland. Determined to unearth the secrets lying hidden in the enchanted waters of the cove, Keelin has little time for a surly Irishman who infuriates her during the day and haunts her fantasies at night.

Inexplicably drawn to the woman who has stepped from his dreams and into his world, Flynn fights a stubborn battle against his increasing attraction for Keelin. Forces unknown have better plans for the two.

Only the secrets of the cove can show Keelin who she really is, the beauty of her mysterious power, and a love that will break the bounds of what she knows.

Contemporary Romance

The Matchmaker

by Catherine Walsh

Available on Kindle Unlimited

Katie has barely ever left her tiny Irish village of Ennisbawn. Why would she? With its tightknit community, friendly local pub, and gorgeous countryside, it has everything that Katie needs. That is, until hot-shot Callum turns up.

Though she’d rather not admit it, hot is the perfect way to describe Callum. With his deep green eyes, strong jaw and (tattooed) arm-full of plans for a new hotel just outside the village, his arrival causes uproar in the village.

But when Katie discovers that the pub will need to be demolished as part of the plans, any feelings of attraction vanish in an instant. The pub is the last connection to her parents who met at Ennisbawn’s once-famous matchmaking festival.

So, after being laughed off the building site in her best flannel pyjamas for demanding the developers leave, Katie decides enough is enough and hatches a plan. She’s going to revive the matchmaking festival, save the pub, and single-handedly bring the town back to life again.

But as the plans for the festival escalate to brilliant, if terrifying, heights, Katie sees another side to Callum, and she’s forced to question where her feelings really lie. Callum is promising not just a new start for the village but potentially for Katie too. Will Katie discover that even when someone’s really not your type on paper, love might be a little bit more than just a formula?

A gorgeously escapist and utterly hilarious small town romcom perfect for fans of Emily Henry, Sophie Kinsella and Christina Lauren.

Urban Fantasy


by Karen Marie Moning

MacKayla Lane’s life is good. She has great friends, a decent job, and a car that breaks down only every other week or so. In other words, she’s your perfectly ordinary twenty-first-century woman. Or so she thinks . . . until something extraordinary happens.

When her sister is murdered, leaving a single clue to her death—a cryptic message on Mac’s cell phone—Mac journeys to Ireland in search of answers. The quest to find her sister’s killer draws her into a shadowy realm where nothing is as it seems, where good and evil wear the same treacherously seductive mask. She is soon faced with an even greater challenge: staying alive long enough to learn how to handle a power she had no idea she possessed–a gift that allows her to see beyond the world of man, into the dangerous realm of the Fae. . . . 

As Mac delves deeper into the mystery of her sister’s death, her every move is shadowed by the dark, mysterious Jericho, a man with no past and only mockery for a future. As she begins to close in on the truth, the ruthless Vlane—an alpha Fae who makes sex an addiction for human women–closes in on her. And as the boundary between worlds begins to crumble, Mac’s true mission becomes clear: find the elusive Sinsar Dubh before someone else claims the all-powerful Dark Book—because whoever gets to it first holds nothing less than complete control of the very fabric of both worlds in their hands. . . .

This is my second time reading this book and it only got better.

Readers, if you haven’t read this series yet, then I highly suggest you do. Just make sure you have all the books on hand because one, you won’t be able to stop and two, there are killer cliffhangers that made me wish to hang myself.

I am not a Fae person. I don’t often enjoy stories that involve the Seelie and Unseelie Court. To me, it was a bunch of blah-blah before I started this series. Fever has changed how I see Fae.

The dark, creepy creatures in this book really caught my attention. And it’s no wonder why I shared Mac’s interest and sometimes disgust concerning the Fae. Moning’s Fae are unlike anything I’ve read before.

And then there’s Mac whom I adore. Mac has learned that her sister was murdered in Dublin while studying abroad. Now, Mac takes initiative where the Garda haven’t and she finds herself hitting the Dublin streets in search of answers to her sister’s murder.

There she encounters Jericho Barrons, the most worldly of men and most likely a total jerk as well. Swapping information with one another, Mac soon learns about a world she never knew existed before.

She also learns many things about herself.

The Fever series is one of my favourite urban fantasy series. Nothing tops a man of mystery and a kickass heroine against a world of dark Fae creatures that do more than just go bump in the night.

Reviewed by Annie on Under the Covers Book Blog December 3, 2011

Five Reasons why Jericho Barrons isn't so bad
have you read the Fever series?

5 Reasons Why Jericho Barrons Isn’t So Bad

While JZB may not be the poems and flowers kind of guy, there are plenty of reasons why he is the perfect book boyfriend.

Contemporary Romance

Still Life with Strings

by L.H. Cosway

My name is Jade Lennon and I stand still for money.

The night I saw Shane Arthur watching me everything changed. A man in a suit always catches my eye, but it was the way he looked at me that was different. Like he knew me or something. He didn’t know me, especially not in my costume. My sobriety rests on staying away from men, but there was something about him that made me throw caution to the wind.

After all, I was never going to see him again, right?


Standing still isn’t the only way I make my money. I also bartend at a concert hall. Never in my wildest dreams did I think Shane was going to show up there. Not only that, but he’s the most recent addition to the orchestra. So now on a daily basis I have to resist one of the most beautiful men I’ve ever met and he plays the violin. For me that’s one hell of a deadly cocktail.

He wants me to teach him how to live. I’m not sure how much a twenty-six year old recovering alcoholic who works in a bar and moonlights as a living statue can teach a world class concert violinist, but I’m sure going to try.

Not suitable for readers under 18 years. Contains strong language and scenes of a sexual nature.

You are in for a treat!  So let me give you a quick glimpse of what you’re in for.  Jade Lennon is a girl from the wrong side of town.  After her mother’s death she’s been the bread winner for her household, supporting her siblings.  In order to do that she works a few jobs.  She’s a ticket sales person and bartender at the local theatre, and she stands still in corners for tips.  Yes, exactly like a living statue.  She’s had bad luck with her previous relationships and has now renounced men and alcohol.  Turning her life around and focusing on what’s important.

Then in walks Shane Arthur.  A stranger at first, an undeniable obsession later.  Shane comes from money, he’s always lived his dream of playing violin.  Even was part of a famous quartet.  But there’s always been something missing from his apparently perfect life.  He’s never gotten to “live”.  To feel alive.  And who better than Jade to teach him a bit about that.

There are so many things that stand out about this book.  The original concept, the flawless and ease of writing, the magic of being transported into the story and feel like you were living it instead of reading it.  But as I’ve always experienced with Ms. Cosway’s books, the characters are it for me.  They’re complex and with many layers.  Layers that you want to get under, whether it’s the hero or heroine.  Characters you can’t wait until you know them completely.  And also as I always experience reading this author, I wanted to be best friends with Jade and at the same time take her man away from her because Shane Arthur is a stud and I want every piece of him.

I fell in love and in lust with this story.  It doesn’t shy away from the sexy factor but it’s there to drive the story forward.  L.H. Cosway is masterful!  If you don’t pick up another book this week, you have to read STILL LIFE WITH STRINGS.  This book captivated me and accomplished what any great book should do.  It made me get lost in its pages until I didn’t want it to end.  Now I’m just left waiting anxiously for the next time this author gifts us with another story.

Reviewed by Francesca on Under the Covers Book Blog March 25, 2014

Young Adult

Love & Luck

by Jenna Evans Welch

From the author of the New York Times bestselling Love & Gelato comes a heartwarming tale of a road trip through Ireland filled with love, adventure, and the true meaning behind the word family.

Addie is visiting Ireland for her aunt’s over-the-top destination wedding and hoping she can stop thinking about the one thing she did that left her miserable and heartbroken—and threatens her future. But her brother, Ian, isn’t about to let her forget, and his constant needling leads to arguments and even a fistfight between the two once inseparable siblings. Miserable, Addie can’t wait to visit her friend in Italy and leave her brother—and her problems—behind.

So when Addie discovers an unusual guidebook, Ireland for the Heartbroken, hidden in the dusty shelves of the hotel library, she’s able to finally escape her anxious mind and Ian’s criticism.

And then their travel plans change. Suddenly Addie finds herself on a whirlwind tour of the Emerald Isle, trapped in the world’s smallest vehicle with Ian and his admittedly cute, Irish-accented friend Rowan. As the trio journeys over breathtaking green hills, past countless castles, and through a number of fairy-tale forests, Addie hopes her guidebook will heal not only her broken heart, but also her shattered relationship with her brother.

That is if they don’t get completely lost along the way.

Historical Romance

Duke Seeks Bride

by Christy Carlyle

In the swoon-worthy finale of her Love on Holiday series, Christy Carlyle takes readers to the breathtaking coast of Ireland where a pretty, young countess’s secretary agrees to impersonate her mistress to help a duke appease his fortune-hunting family…until he falls for her instead.

“Simply delightful!” —Julia Quinn

Miss Evelyn Graves has never had a holiday. She is much too busy as the personal secretary to the Countess of Waverly. But the Duke of Ballymore Castle in Connemara, Ireland, has invited the countess to visit—and as the countess cannot travel, she has insisted Evelyn go in her stead. Except when Evie arrives, everyone mistakes her for the countess—and it’s clear the family who owns crumbling Ballymore were hoping to match the widowed countess with Alexander Pierpont, Duke of Rennick. Though Alex knows the truth of Evie’s identity, he has an unusual request. He’ll happily show her hospitality if she’ll agree to let others think she’s the countess during her visit.

There’s just one problem: as time runs out on their arrangement and Alex increasingly fears he must in fact marry an heiress to save his family’s fortunes, he finds that his heart now belongs to Miss Evie Graves…and he can’t bring himself to let her go.

Contemporary Romance

Straight Up Irish

by Magan Vernon

I need a wife if I want to help save my family’s billion-dollar pub empire. There’s just one problem: I never plan on marrying. So, I need someone who understands that this is just another business deal. I don’t do commitments. And my brother’s executive assistant, Fallon Smith, fits that bill.

Fallon needs help with her grandmother’s expenses, and her pretending to be my fake wife is a way we can make that happen. She’s not my biggest fan, but we can help each other and then go our separate ways. That she’s beautiful and I enjoy spending time with her–doesn’t matter. When all of this is done, she’s heading home to America, and I’ve got a company to run.

A fake wedding and a whole lot of whiskey. What could go wrong?

Women’s Fiction

P.S. I Love You

by Cecelia Ahern

You may have watched the movie, but have you read the book?

Everyone needs a guardian angel! Some people wait their whole lives to find their soul mates. But not Holly and Gerry. Childhood sweethearts, they could finish each other’s sentences and even when they fought, they laughed. No one could imagine Holly and Gerry without each other. Until the unthinkable happens.

Gerry’s death devastates Holly. But as her 30th birthday looms, Gerry comes back to her. He’s left her a bundle of notes, one for each of the months after his death, gently guiding Holly into her new life without him, each note signed ‘PS, I Love You’. As the notes are gradually opened, and as the year unfolds, Holly is both cheered up and challenged. The man who knows her better than anyone sets out to teach her that life goes on. With some help from her friends, and her noisy and loving family, Holly finds herself laughing, crying, singing, dancing–and being braver than ever before. Life is for living, she realises–but it always helps if there’s an angel watching over you.

Books that feature Irish main characters

Even if you can’t explore the beautiful Irish scenery with the next books, you’ll fall madly in love with these Irish characters.

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Originally posted February 28, 2023 | Last updated March 6, 2024

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  1. I really enjoyed Off the Map and the Darkfever series. And I think Roark is my favorite Irish character.