If you enjoy books with the forced proximity trope then get ready to add each of these to your to-be-read list!
I’ve got all the best forced proximity books in this book list for you to read right now!
*Disclosure: I participate in the Amazon Affiliates program so if you click an affiliate link and make a purchase, I make a small commission at no extra cost to you.
What is the Forced Proximity Trope?
The forced proximity trope is used in books where the main characters are forced to spend time together, either wanted or unwanted, giving them the time and space to fall in love.
This favorite book trope can cross over with so many other popular romance book tropes including:
- Office romance
- Nanny romance
- Roommates to lovers
- Neighbors to lovers
- Bodyguard romance
- Marriage of convenience
- Arranged marriage
- Fake relationship romance
- Slow burn romance, to name a few!
While some of the forced proximity romance books on this book list may overlap with those tropes, I wanted this list to capture some truly unique forced proximity situations. 😊
So below you’ll find books with the following forced proximity scenarios:
- Sharing close quarters
- Stranded together
- Stuck in the woods
- Force proximity from unique situations
- On vacation
- Working in the same office
Do you have a favorite forced proximity scenario that you like to read about in books? Let me know in the comments below.
Happy reading! Because life is better with a love story…
Books with Forced Proximity Sharing Close Quarters
These are books with the forced proximity trope where the characters are forced together by sharing the same house, apartment, inn, bedroom, or castle!
by Emily Henry
Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they aren’t.
They broke up five months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.
Which is how they find themselves sharing a bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade.
Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other.
Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts.
Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show.
After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week…in front of those who know you best?
I love how the forced proximity of sharing the same room forces Wyn and Harriet to finally address the reasons that their years-long relationship failed.
Because they are also sharing the cabin with their closest friends who believe they are still engaged – it makes things even more interesting for the couple!
I enjoy Emily Henry’s books and this one totally delivered a can’t-put-down story. Check out my review of Happy Place.
Related: Best Second Chance Romance Books
by K. Bromberg
One stormy night. One hotel bar full of stranded travelers. One available chair next to a charming, mysterious man.
When our paths crossed again, I never expected the stranger to be Fordham Sharpe who I’d just become partners with in a hotel transformation that dreams were made of.
To him, I was off limits. But we had one thing in common—we were both hiding. From our pasts. From unresolved family conflicts. From what really mattered—our hearts.
But as each day passed, our mutual attraction became harder to resist.
We agreed to the partnership to prove our worth to our families, but perhaps we’d only prove our need for something else. Each other.
This forced proximity book takes place at an Inn where Ford and Ellery end up living together during the renovations.
It started off with the cutest forced proximity meet cute, forcing them both to hunker down in a bar during a raging storm. From that moment I loved their moments together on the job and seeing how Ford and Ellery both worked through their struggles before finally admitting their love for one another.
Bromberg’s first book in this series, Last Resort, is also a forced proximity romance that takes place at a tropical resort! It too is a 5-star read.
Check out my review of Final Proposal.
Related: The Best Billionaire Romance Novels
The Plight Before Christmas
by Kate Stewart
Whitney Collins has had it rough the last month but she’s on her way to her grandparent’s cabin to spend the Christmas holiday with her family. She did not plan on also spending it with her ex whom her brother happens to bring along.
Now she’s stuck with Eli for the week, the man who broke her heart nearly two decades ago. Between memories that resurface and the way he’s looking at her, Whitney’s not sure her heart is going to survive the holiday.
Let’s just say that Eli makes a bold move crashing the Christmas of his ex where she has no chance of escaping him sharing the same cabin.
I’d honestly love to be in a forced proximity situation with the Collins family as they are amazing and hilarious and were such a fun part of this romance in addition to Whitney and Eli’s chemistry.
Check out my review of The Plight Before Christmas.
Related: Best Christmas Romance Books
Act Your Age, Eve Brown
by Talia Hibbert
Eve Brown is a certified hot mess. No matter how hard she strives to do right, things always seem to go wrong. Case in point when she accidentally hits the owner of the bed and breakfast with her car, breaking his arm.
Jacob may have turned her down for the head chef position during her interview, but with him laid up and understaffed Eve is everywhere he turns trying to help.
Eve’s chaotic nature is the complete opposite to Jacob’s need to control everything, so why is he starting to get used to her being around and liking it?
I totally adored Eve and Jacob which made this forced proximity book an instant all-time favorite romance. And to say that I was surprised by some of their HOT moments living in the same Inn is an understatement.
Definitely pick up this romance for the adorable, zany characters who may be complete opposites but find they may be perfect for each other all along.
Check out my review of Act Your Age, Eve Brown.
Related: Best #OwnVoices Romance Books
by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy
Jamie Canning has never been able to figure out how he lost his closest friend. So what if things got a little weird four years ago on the last night of hockey camp the summer they were eighteen?
Ryan Wesley’s biggest regret is coaxing his very straight friend into a bet that pushed the boundaries of their relationship.
Now, with their college teams set to face off at the national championship, he’ll finally get a chance to apologize. But all it takes is one look at his longtime crush, and the ache is stronger than ever.
When Wesley turns up to coach alongside Jamie for one more hot summer at camp, Jamie has a few things to discover about his old friend… and a big one to learn about himself.
This is one of my all-time favorite gay romance novels that I could reread again and again.
I loved how Ryan is trying to manage the feelings he’s always had for his best friend while Jamie is exploring his own feelings that he didn’t know he had.
It is such a great, friends to lovers story brought together by forced proximity sharing the same room at camp and I cannot recommend it enough.
Related: Best MM Romance Books, Best Hockey Romance Books
The Wall of Winnipeg
by Mariana Zapata
Vanessa Mazur knows she’s doing the right thing. She shouldn’t feel bad for quitting. Being an assistant/housekeeper/fairy godmother to the top defensive end in the National Football Organization was always supposed to be temporary. She has plans and none of them include washing extra-large underwear longer than necessary.
But when Aiden Graves shows up at her door wanting her to come back, she’s beyond shocked.
For two years, the man known as The Wall of Winnipeg couldn’t find it in him to tell her good morning or congratulate her on her birthday. Now? He’s asking for the unthinkable.
While Vanessa and Aiden are no strangers to one another, they really don’t know each other when he asks her to become his wife to prevent his deportation.
They’ve always lived in the same house since Vanessa is Aiden’s assistant, but their forced proximity takes a different turn when she becomes his wife.
Zapata’s most popular romance is a must-read.
Related: Best Marriage of Convenience Romance Books, Best Slow Burn Romance Books
Romancing the Duke
by Tessa Dare
Izzy may have grown up with romantic stories of love but she’s long since given up on finding love and romance for herself.
With barely a roof over her head, she learns she has inherited a dilapidated castle which happens to have a Duke already living in it.
I loved this forced proximity storyline where Izzy and Ransom find themselves living together within the same dilapidated castle.
He’s totally the grump to her sunshine but these two lost souls end up falling for one another and I could not put this down until they got their happily ever after!
Check out my review of Romancing the Duke.
Related: Best Historical Romance Novels, Best Books in the Grumpy Sunshine Trope
by J.T. Geissinger
He was a stranger to me, a dark and dangerous presence who materialized from the shadows one rainy night to save me from a vicious attack. I didn’t know his name or where he was from. All I knew was that the only place I’d ever felt safe was in his arms.
But safety is an illusion. And not every savior is a hero. And—as I’d soon find out—having a king save your life comes with a price.
Liam Black wanted something from me in return.
Geissinger can do no wrong in my book and Beautifully Cruel started off several incredible mafia romance books that I couldn’t get enough of which showcase her incredible storytelling.
After being rescued by the quiet man who always sat and watched her work in the diner, Tru finds herself living in Liam’s apartment and falling for the alpha man she knows nothing about.
I can’t recommend this forced proximity book enough!
Check out my review of Beautifully Cruel.
Related: Best Alpha Males, Best Mafia Romance Books
Hard to Hold
by K. Bromberg
Lennox Kincaid is a female sports agent in a male-dominated world. When her reputation is called into question, she takes a job on a whim only to discover that she’s tasked with recruiting bad boy footballer, Rush McKenzie, to stay in the States and play for Major League Soccer.
Rush has no interest in leaving team Liverpool, but with a scandal marring his reputation and putting his team loyalty on the line, he may not have a choice.
When they end up sharing a house, there’s no stopping their attraction so they’ll just keep it a secret, no strings-attached fling, right?
I loved how this forced proximity romance doesn’t transpire as a typical “office romance” where both characters try and deny their attraction. Nope!
Lennox is honest and upfront with Rush from the start and has no problems voicing her wants and desires which they take full advantage of while sharing the same beach home.
Check out my review of Hard to Hold.
Related: Best Sports Romance Books, Best Romance Series to Binge Read
Hook, Line and Sinker
by Tessa Bailey
King crab fisherman Fox Thornton has a reputation as a hot, carefree flirt who’s a guaranteed good time–in bed and out–and that’s exactly how he prefers it. Until he meets Hannah Bellinger. She’s immune to his charm and looks, but she seems to enjoy his… personality? And wants to be friends?
Now, Hannah’s in town for work, crashing in Fox’s spare bedroom. She’s still nursing a hopeless crush on a colleague yet the more time she spends with Fox, the more she wants him instead.
I didn’t think anything could be better than the first book in this series, It Happened One Summer, but oh man did this one hit the jackpot.
I loved that Hannah and Fox became close friends through their texts before sharing the same apartment, but it was their forced proximity that finally moved things from friends to lovers.
Check out my review of Hook, Line and Sinker.
Related: Best Friends to Lovers Books
by P. Dangelica
Grant Hendricks may be four-time Defensive Player of the Year but a recent back injury is threatening to end his career.
Trying to get his head on straight he escapes to his teammate’s beach house only to find a woman and her son already living there.
I sure do love a grumpy hero, so it was inevitable I would fall for Grant but it was also his sweetness toward Amanda’s son that was just so perfect.
Theirs was a forced proximity living situation that neither wanted (and Grant sure made a good show of it!) but living together slowly let them peel away each other’s layers of hurt to find something truly special together.
Related: Best Grumpy Sunshine Trope Books
by Maya Banks
Adam, Ethan and Ryan aren’t looking for women. They’re looking for a woman. One woman to share their lives and their beds.
They don’t want a casual romp in the hay, they want the woman who will complete them and they’re losing hope of finding her. That is until Adam finds Holly lying in the snow just yards from their cabin.
He knows she’s different the minute he holds her in his arms. But before Adam gets his hopes up, he knows he has to gauge his brothers’ reactions. Soon it’s evident that she’s the one.
There are a few problems, however, like convincing her she belongs with them and keeping her safe from the man who wants her gone.
Can’t say that I ever envisioned this forced proximity situation for myself but Banks knows how to write one heck of a hot story!
Holly is running from danger and finds herself living in a cabin with not one but three men who all want her as their collective wife. That’s a lot to process after being rescued but it doesn’t take long for her to get on board 😊.
Related: Best Erotic Romance Books
by Kristen Ashley
Nina Sheridan desperately needs a timeout vacation. With a fiance who can’t even remember how she takes her coffee, Nina wants some distance to rethink her engagement.
Flying halfway around the world from England to a mountain town in Colorado should do the trick. But when she finds a gorgeous man at her rental cabin, Nina’s cold, lonely adventure suddenly heats up.
The owner of the house, Holden “Max” Maxwell is surprised by the beautiful woman who turns up at his door. But when Nina becomes ill, Max spends days nursing her back to health.
A private man with a broken heart, Max finds himself drawn to the strong-willed woman. Soon it becomes impossible for Nina and Max to deny their growing attraction to one another.
Yet even as these two wounded souls think about taking a chance on a relationship, a secret from Max’s past emerges-and threatens to end their love for good.
Kristen Ashley’s novels are epic reads and The Gamble is one of her best. Nina doesn’t expect Max to be living in her rental cabin, nor does she anticipate his kindness in taking care of her when she becomes sick.
Despite the miscommunication, their forced proximity is the perfect opportunity for Nina to realize what she’s missing in her life and where she can now find what she truly wants.
Right as Raine
by Lucy Lennox
As the first openly gay professional football player, I can’t afford to make any mistakes, on or off the field. And the absolute biggest mistake I could make right now would be to fall for Mikey Vining, my best friend, employee and, more importantly, Coach’s baby boy.
I might fantasize about Mikey at night-—every night—but actually touching him would be a serious personal foul. And falling for him? That’s completely out of bounds.
But when we end up together in a small cabin in a remote Colorado town, suddenly, there’s not much to do but look at each other. And talk. And hopefully, hopefully touch.
But what happens when our stay in Aster Valley is over and it’s time to return to the real world? Will Coach blow the whistle on our relationship? Or might there be something more than football to love after all?
Of course, I have to add another MM romance to this list and this one is just perfect. It’s only when the two are stuck in a cabin to help Tiller recuperate from an injury do these two finally act on their years-long crushes. Thank you forced proximity to help nudge these two along.
Read it for the hot football player and the cute chef who adores him!
Books with Forced Proximity by Kidnapping
These are books with the forced proximity trope with a bit of Stockholm Syndrome at play where the captive falls for the captor.
The Darkest Temptation
by Danielle Lori
A fortune teller once told Mila she’d find a man who would take her breath away. She refrained from telling her it would be literally while Mila ran for her life.
Having always done what is expected of her, Mila dresses the part, only dates college boys with exemplary backgrounds, and doesn’t ask questions. Not about her papa’s absences or his refusal to let her set foot in her birthplace—Russia.
Suffocated by the rules and unanswered questions, Mila does what she’s always wanted to. She boards a plane to Moscow.
She never expected to fall for a man on the way. One with unexplained wealth, tattoos on his hands, and secrets in his eyes. But it doesn’t take long for his caress to become a rough grasp muffling her screams.
Revenge is a dish best served cold. Unfortunately, a Russian winter is the coldest of them all, and Mila soon learns the only way to escape intact is to do the impossible and thaw her captor’s heart.
This forced proximity is definitely a darker romance and not just because it involves a kidnapping. There’s definitely some Stockholm Syndrome going on for Mila but can you blame her for falling for a tattooed man who is all ALPHA?!
This was the third book in an absolutely incredible series so read them all!
A Promise of Fire
by Amanda Bouchet
Cat Fisa has been living in disguise as a soothsayer in a traveling circus until Griffin, an ambitious warlord from the magic-deprived south, recognizes her magic and kidnaps her.
Griffin knows Cat is the Kingmaker, the woman who divines the truth through lies. He wants her as a powerful weapon for his newly conquered realm-until he realizes he wants her for much more than her magic.
I absolutely devoured this book and didn’t want to put it down. The back-and-forth banter between Cat and Griffin was off the charts as she fought her feelings for him, but he was the most patient alpha.
Though she’s kidnapped by Griffin, she travels with him and his team who sought to protect her at every turn and were incredible characters all on their own.
Definitely pick up this forced proximity book if you love fantasy or want to dive into a great series.
Check out my review of A Promise of Fire.
Related: Most Spellbinding Fantasy Romance Books
by J.T. Geissinger
Declan blames me for starting an all-out-fight between mafia sides and consorting with his enemies. Though I’m innocent on all charges, he wants his pound of flesh and makes me his captive.
But as we’ll both soon discover, there are more powerful urges than sticking it to your enemies.
Declan climbed his way up the charts as one of my favorite book boyfriends after reading this forced proximity book where his plans to kidnap Sloane totally backfire in the best of ways.
This man is one hot alpha Irish man but Sloane was such a spitfire who could hold her own and turn the tables on her captors. It’s a must-read!
Related: Best Dirty Talkers in Romance
by J.T. Geissinger
When my older sister calls out of the blue to announce she’s getting married, it’s a shock. I should’ve known something was wrong when she wouldn’t tell me where I’d be going.
And I absolutely didn’t anticipate her fiancé being Declan O’Donnell, head of the Irish mob who’s now a target of a savage Bratva assassin who wants revenge for his brother.
Now I’m smack in the middle of a mafia fight, and I’ve got a Russian assassin who’s decided he likes the looks of me.
Carnal Urges gives you Sloane’s story but Savage Hearts gives you her sister Riley’s story which is another forced proximity by kidnapping romance.
I honestly devoured this in one day, absolutely obsessed with Malek and their time tucked away in a remote cabin in the woods. Geissinger is one of my favorite authors for a reason!
by Laura Thalassa
They came to earth, the four horsemen riding their screaming steeds, racing to the corners of the world.
When Pestilence comes for Sara Burn’s town, she’s determined to be the one to end him. Too bad no one told her Pestilence lives forever.
Now the horseman has taken her prisoner, and he’s eager to make her suffer. Only, the longer she’s with him, the more uncertain she is about his true feelings towards her and hers towards him.
And now, Sara might still be able to save the world, but in order to do so, she’ll have to sacrifice her heart in the process.
I don’t think anyone expects to get kidnapped by one of the Four Horsemen of the apocalypse, let alone fall in love with him, but that’s exactly what happens to Sara.
While I loved the unique romance, I really enjoyed their conversations and how they explored their completely different takes on the world and humankind.
If you like modern-day paranormal romance books, this is the forced proximity book for you.
A Court of Thorns and Roses
by Sarah J. Maas
When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre takes the life of a wolf in the woods, a terrifying creature arrives to demand retribution.
Dragged to a treacherous magical land she knows about only from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not truly a beast, but one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled her world.
As she adapts to her new home, her feelings for the faerie, Tamlin, transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae.
But something is not right in the faerie lands. An ancient, wicked shadow is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it, or doom Tamlin-and his world-forever.
This is another forced proximity romance by kidnapping though it takes place in a fantasy world among the High and lesser Fae.
Feyre may only be human but she can’t help fall for the High Fae of the Spring Court and take on the evil that holds its survival in its hands.
Related: A Court of Thorns and Roses Books in Order, A Court of Thorns and Roses TV Series
Books with Forced Proximity by Being Stranded or In the Woods
These are the books with the forced proximity trope where the characters are stranded somewhere beyond their control or are stuck in the woods!
The Mountain Between Us
by Charles Martin
When a blizzard strands them in Salt Lake City, two strangers agree to charter a plane together, hoping to return home. Ben Payne is a gifted surgeon returning from a conference, and Ashley Knox, a magazine writer en route to her wedding.
But when unthinkable tragedy strikes, the pair find themselves stranded in Utah’s most remote wilderness in the middle of winter, badly injured and miles from civilization.
Without food or shelter, Ashley and Ben’s chances for survival look bleak, but their reliance on each other sparks an immediate connection, which soon evolves into something more.
OMG, this book was so gripping you just aren’t sure whether or not they are going to make it. These two characters are just trying to survive the cold and the wilderness they’re stuck in and yet they have these poignant moments of connection that sets the foundation of a love that blossoms despite their adversity.
If it were me, there’s no way I’d make it out but Martin makes me believe maybe I could with the perfect partner beside me. This book was truly fantastic.
Ice Planet Barbarians
by Ruby Dixon
You’d think being abducted by aliens would be the worst thing that could happen to me. And you’d be wrong. Because now, the aliens are having ship trouble, and they’ve left their cargo of human women – including me – on an ice planet.
And the only native inhabitant I’ve met? He’s big, horned, blue, and really, really has a thing for me.
Can you find love if you’ve been kidnapped and then stranded on an alien planet? Well if you’re in Ruby Dixon’s world you can!
This is the book that started it all with her famed Ice Planet Barbarians series, so if you have a thing for blue aliens who know how to please a woman, then this is the book for you.
Check out my review of Ice Planet Barbarians.
Related: Best Alien Romance Books
On the Island
by Tracey Garvis Graves
With his cancer in remission, sixteen-year-old T.J. Callahan just wants to get back to normal life, not catch up on missed schoolwork at their Maldives summer home.
Anna Emerson is a thirty-year-old English teacher who jumps at the chance to spend the summer on a tropical island tutoring T.J. only the unthinkable happens. Their private plane crashes leaving them stranded on an uninhabited island.
As the days turn to weeks, and then months, and as birthdays pass, these two lost souls must come to terms with their situation and find companionship in one another in the moments they need it most.
While at first the age gap seemed a bit sketchy to me, I love the unique take on this teacher student romance book where they can’t help but fall for one another while stranded on an island for years together.
Read it to discover how they cope with their forced proximity on a deserted island.
by Layla Hagen
Aimee’s wedding is supposed to turn out perfect. Her dress, her fiancé and the location—the idyllic holiday ranch in Brazil—are perfect. But all Aimee’s plans come crashing down when the private jet that’s taking her from the U.S. to the ranch—where her fiancé awaits her—defects mid-flight and the pilot is forced to perform an emergency landing in the heart of the Amazon rainforest.
With no way to reach civilization, being rescued is Aimee and Tristan’s—the pilot—only hope. A slim one that slowly withers away, desperation taking its place.
As Aimee and Tristan fight to find ways to survive, they grow closer. Together they discover that facing old, inner agonies carved by painful pasts takes just as much courage, if not even more, than facing the rainforest.
Despite her devotion to her fiancé, Aimee can’t hide her feelings for Tristan—the man for whom she’s slowly becoming everything.
Wow, this story had some suspenseful moments and then some! Hagen’s descriptions were so good I could truly picture their plight in the Amazon rainforest and all the dangers they encountered.
When you’re just fighting to survive each and every moment of every day, I imagine you get real close to the person you’re stranded real quick and that’s exactly what happened for Aimee and Tristan.
Read it before you watch the movie that’s coming to Passionflix.
Related: The Ultimate Passionflix Movie List
by Penelope Douglas
Tiernan de Haas doesn’t care about anything anymore. The only child of a film producer and his starlet wife, she’s grown up with wealth and privilege but not love or guidance.
Shipped off to boarding schools from an early age, it was still impossible to escape the loneliness and carve out a life of her own. The shadow of her parents’ fame followed her everywhere.
And when they suddenly pass away, she knows she should be devastated. But has anything really changed? She’s always been alone, hasn’t she?
Jake Van der Berg, her father’s stepbrother and her only living relative, assumes guardianship of Tiernan who is still two months shy of eighteen.
Sent to live with him and his two sons, Noah and Kaleb, in the mountains of Colorado, Tiernan soon learns that these men now have a say in what she chooses to care and not care about anymore.
As the three of them take her under their wing, teach her to work and survive in the remote woods far away from the rest of the world, she slowly finds her place among them. And as a part of them.
She also realizes that lines blur and rules become easy to break when no one else is watching. One of them has her. The other one wants her. But he…He’s going to keep her.
This is definitely one of those books that readers either love or don’t. I personally loved it and got sucked right in.
Which side will you fall on when it comes to this forced proximity romance where Tiernan is tucked away in a remote cabin for an entire winter with not one but three people who want her?
Related: Best Reverse Harem Books
Kiss and Don’t Tell
by Meghan Quinn
Winnie Berlin is in need of a break but her road trip to Banff veers off course thanks to a rain storm landing her car in a ditch and her hiking through the woods to the closest cabin.
Despite the fear of falling into the hands of a psychopath, she knocks on the door and finds herself instead facing five professional hockey players.
The surprises keep coming when she finds herself falling for the Vancouver Agitators’ goalie, Pacey Lawes. What she didn’t see coming was that Pacey is her ex-boyfriend’s half-brother. But maybe as long as they kiss and don’t tell, everything will be okay.
After reading this book I want to get stuck in a rain storm and find a house with five hot hockey players like these boys. Gah, they are all so adorable!
But this book really focuses on Pacey and he stood out as the perfect book boyfriend making sure Winnie felt safe and cared for.
This book has everything I love about Quinn’s books – fantastic characters, amazing, laugh-out-loud banter and a book boyfriend who gives all the feels.
Check out my review of Kiss and Don’t Tell.
Highly Suspicious and Unfairly Cute
by Talia Hibbert
Bradley Graeme is pretty much perfect. He’s a star football player, manages his OCD well (enough), and comes out on top in all his classes . . . except the ones he shares with his ex-best friend, Celine.
Celine Bangura is conspiracy-theory-obsessed. Social media followers eat up her takes on everything from UFOs to holiday overconsumption—yet, she’s still not cool enough for the popular kids’ table. Which is why Brad abandoned her for the in-crowd years ago. (At least, that’s how Celine sees it.)
These days, there’s nothing between them other than petty insults and academic rivalry. So when Celine signs up for a survival course in the woods, she’s surprised to find Brad right beside her.
Forced to work as a team for the chance to win a grand prize, these two teens must trudge through not just mud and dirt but their messy past.
And as this adventure brings them closer together, they begin to remember the good bits of their history. But has too much time passed . . . or just enough to spark a whole new kind of relationship?
For a little young adult romance action, try this forced proximity romance where two former friends are forced to remember their past while traipsing through the woods.
I love the added element of competition to this romance that forces them to really work together, plus it sounds really cute 😊.
Related: Romance Books Featuring Mental Health Issues
Books with Forced Proximity in Unique Settings
These are the books with the forced proximity trope with incredibly unique situations that bring the main characters together.
Love Under Quarantine
by Kylie Scott and Audrey Carlan
While the world is ravaged by a global pandemic, hotshot NFL running back Evan Sparks is locked in his own personal hell. With a career-ending scandal on his back, Evan hides out in his best friend’s empty San Francisco home, the full city shutdown locking him in a lonely twenty-story apartment in the sky.
Romance writer Sadie Walsh is having the worst case of writer’s block ever…until the incredible, muscular stranger staying next door gets her muse going strong. The pair of loners, never expecting to find a friend in all the madness, meet each day out on their balconies like a modern-day Romeo and Juliet.
Each new day brings unique challenges for the pair as they navigate the unknown and find solace together. They quickly figure out that as long as they have one another, they can handle anything. Even falling in love under quarantine.
This book came out when we were all quarantined at home and it hit on so many details that rang true to my experience.
I loved how Scott and Carlan took real-world experiences and carved out a unique, forced proximity romance between a romance writer and football player living next door to one another. It totally worked and is such a great read!
Check out my review of Love Under Quarantine.
The Worst Guy
by Kate Canterbary
Eight weeks of forced proximity is a long time to hate someone you’re trying not to love.
Sebastian Stremmel is a trauma surgeon so he has enough to deal with without Sara Shapiro, the noisy new reconstructive surgeon, starting a heated “debate” that left an exam room left in shambles.
Now he and Sara have landed themselves in eight weeks of hospital-mandated conflict resolution counseling.
Only now being forced to fight fair leads them to playing dirty when no one’s looking.
This grumpy sunshine romance is the perfect enemies to lovers story, and once they started getting it on, this got oh so good.
I love that these two troubled souls were exactly what each other needed even if they were forced into anger management sessions with one another.
The writing is spectacular and the banter is fabulous in this one. I loved it and can’t recommend it enough.
A Very Friendly Valentine’s Day
by Kayley Loring
Birdie and Eddie have been best friends since college. He’s now an actor on a hit TV show and she’s an archivist with a thing for Sherlock Holmes.
They are complete opposites but one night has them looking at the other in a whole new light.
Now they are traveling across country together in the same train suite to get to New York for Valentine’s Day. What could possibly happen?
I loved the unique setting for this forced proximity romance that finally got these two friends to admit their feelings for one another while traveling in the same overnight train car.
It’s a quick read and one of my favorite Loring books that is perfect for Valentine’s Day and any time of year.
Related: Best Friends to Lovers Romance Books
by BB Easton
I amso close to finally becoming a full-fledged psychologist, but my supervisor is holding out on my letter of recommendation.
I’m tasked with curing our most-prized client’s writer’s block in time for him to meet his insane deadline. Only said client just so happens to be Thomas O’Reardon, the wickedly brilliant, achingly beautiful, devastatingly British best-selling author I may have a slight crush on.
So, when Thomas casually asks me out at the end of a therapy session, I’m forced to make an impossible choice: say yes and risk losing my dream job, or say no and risk losing my dream guy. In a panic, I blurt out a third option—group therapy.
I love BB Easton’s writing and honestly, the best parts of this forced proximity romance were Lou’s recounting of her various individual therapy sessions and then of course the group therapy sessions that went off the rails.
When it came to organizing group therapy sessions as a way to see more of Thomas, Lou’s crush, in a less creepy way that didn’t violate doctor-patient privilege, Easton went ALL OUT and it was awesome.
Check out my review of Group Therapy.
The Edge of Never
by J.A. Redmerski
Twenty-year-old Camryn Bennett thought she knew exactly where her life was going. But after a wild night at the hottest club she shocks everyone-including herself-when she decides to leave the only life she’s ever known and set out on her own.
Grabbing her purse and her cell phone, Camryn boards a Greyhound bus ready to find herself. Instead, she finds Andrew Parrish.
Andrew lives life like there is no tomorrow. He persuades Camryn to do things she never thought she would and shows her how to give in to her deepest, most forbidden desires.
Soon he becomes the center of her daring new life, pulling love and lust and emotion out of her in ways she never imagined possible. But there is more to Andrew than Camryn realizes. Will his secret push them inseparably together — or destroy them forever?
This book instantly took up a spot on my favorite romance book list because it is just that good. There is far more to this story than just two young adults traveling together on a Greyhound bus and learning to truly LIVE but I won’t give away any spoilers.
Just trust me that this is one of the best forced proximity romance books you won’t soon forget.
Praying for Rain
by BB Easton
There’s only three days left until the predicted apocalypse and Rainbow Williams can’t wait. Because then her pain will be gone and she’ll no longer have to feel.
Her time may be cut even shorter but then she’s saved by Wes Parker – until he kidnaps her.
All Wes cares about is supplies, shelter and self-defense. So why is he chasing after Rain and protecting her? Society may be crumbling around them and about to end but now they both have a reason to live.
Wes and Rainbow have no other choice but to stick together in this forced proximity romance because the world is ending!
Trust me, if the world is on its last legs and it’s either succumb to it or go down fighting, I’ll be the one fighting – hopefully with a hot partner at my side.
Easton truly writes the most unique stories and you’ll get hooked with this one and be ready to read the next in the Rain Trilogy.
Check out my review of Praying for Rain.
by Sawyer Bennett
Some would call me irrevocably broken. I submerge myself in long work hours by day and debauchery at The Wicked Horse by night, using those things to numb the pain and guilt I feel over the loss of my wife.
But things change when Hannah Madigan shows up at my door, the newest employee sent by the company that cleans my apartment. Beat down by life, not to mention a cheating husband who was unfairly awarded custody of their daughter, Hannah is determined to make a better life for herself and get her kid back, even if it means working three jobs to do so.
One costly mistake puts Hannah in my debt, and I’m not about to let the chance to have this dark-haired beauty pass me by.
Determined to stay the course by any means necessary, Hannah accepts my less than professional offer. I’ll give her a job. She’ll give me her body. Sounds easy, right?
Until the scales tip and I find myself needing her in ways I’m not ready to admit. Until I find that saving someone else may just mean allowing myself to be saved in return.
This forced proximity romance is similar to the movie, Indecent Proposal, in that a wealthy man proposes a wicked way for her to repay him for the vase that she accidentally breaks while cleaning his apartment.
Though one night turns into multiple, mutually-pleasurable evenings at the adult club, The Wicked Horse, for these two.
I love how Bennett creates such unique stories for each of her characters in The Wicked Horse Las Vegas series which are all wickedly good!
by Ella Frank and Brooke Blaine
The members of the band, TBD, are in a major jam when their lead singer runs out on them. They are desperate for a new front man but when Halo walks in for his audition, they’ve found their guy.
The only trouble is that Viper, the guitarist can’t resist Halo and it’s a bad idea to mix business with pleasure -especially when Halo is straight.
This is honestly a rock star romance (and series!) that I could reread over and over again because it’s that good and that HOT!
Seriously, Frank and Blaine outdid themselves with this forced proximity romance where one bandmate relentlessly pursues his straight bandmate and then it’s on and neither can keep their hands off each other.
Where the Lost Wander
by Amy Harmon
Naomi and her family set out on the Oregon Trail for a better life in California where she meets and falls for a half-Pawnee man. But life on the Trail is filled with hardship and death and staying together may be the toughest thing of all.
This amazing forced proximity romance consumed me for days. I had to read it so slowly so that I wouldn’t miss a single detail.
Harmon’s words are so captivating that you feel like you are on the wagon trail along with them.
I loved Naomi’s boldness and John’s quiet confidence. I highly recommend this to all historical romance fans.
Check out my review of Where the Lost Wander.
by Angie Hockman
Marketing manager Henley Evans couldn’t be more excited that she’s shortlisted for the promotion of her dreams, only to discover that Graeme Crawford-Collins, the remote social media manager and the bane of her existence, is also up for the position.
Although they’ve never met in person, their epic email battles are the stuff of office legend.
Their boss tasks each of them with drafting a proposal on how to boost bookings in the Galápagos—best proposal wins the promotion.
There’s just one catch: they have to go on a company cruise to the Galápagos Islands…together.
But when the two meet on the ship, Henley is shocked to discover that the real Graeme is nothing like she imagined. As they explore the Islands together, she soon finds the line between loathing and liking thinner than a postcard.
While technically also an office romance, I had to include this forced proximity romance on the list because these two coworkers who have never seen each other end up falling for one another while on a cruise to the Galapagos!
I mean the scenery depicted of the Galapagos is amazing but it’s also their enemies to lovers arc that made this such a great read.
Related: Romance Books That Inspire Travel
Books with Forced Proximity While on Vacation
These are the books with the forced proximity trope where the main characters fall for one another while on vacation.
The Float Plan
by Trish Doller
Since the loss of her fiancé, Anna has been shipwrecked by grief—until a reminder goes off about a trip they were supposed to take together. Impulsively, Anna goes to sea in their sailboat, intending to complete the voyage alone.
But after a treacherous night’s sail, she realizes she can’t do it by herself and hires Keane, a professional sailor, to help.
Much like Anna, Keane is struggling with a very different future than the one he had planned. As romance rises with the tide, they discover that it’s never too late to chart a new course.
Something about this book just screams read me as I can’t wait for Anna and Keane to find a happily ever after that seems so deserving.
Seems hard not to get close to someone when your forced proximity is a small sailboat but I’m more intrigued by their journey out of grief and struggle.
by Christina Lauren
Olive’s identical twin sister is getting married, forcing Olive to spend the day with her sworn enemy, Ethan, who just happens to be the best man.
Though things finally seem to go her way when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning sparring her and Ethan, leaving an all-expenses-paid honeymoon in Hawaii up for grabs.
Putting their mutual hatred aside for the sake of a free vacation, Olive and Ethan head for paradise, determined to avoid each other at all costs. But when Olive runs into her future boss, a little white lie forces her and Ethan to pretend to be loving newlyweds.
I’m such a fan of Christina Lauren that it’s no surprise one of their books landed on this list and one of their most popular at that!
I love that Ethan and Olive travel to Hawaii together despite their dislike for one another. I mean, who would turn down a trip like that, am I right?!
This is the perfect forced proximity romance where these two are stuck sharing the same room and pretending to be in a relationship to save face only to fall for each other in the process. A must read if you haven’t read it yet!
Books with Forced Proximity While Sharing the Same Office
These are the books with the forced proximity trope where the main characters share the same office or office space.
The Hating Game
by Sally Thorne
Lucy Hutton and Joshua Templeman hate each other. Not dislike. Not begrudgingly tolerate. Hate. And they have no problem displaying their feelings through a series of ritualistic passive aggressive maneuvers as they sit across from each other, executive assistants to co-CEOs of a publishing company.
Now up for the same promotion, their battle of wills has come to a head and Lucy refuses to back down when their latest game could cost her her dream job.
But the tension between Lucy and Joshua has also reached its boiling point, and Lucy is discovering that maybe she doesn’t hate Joshua. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game.
If you haven’t yet read The Hating Game, even after the movie release, then what are you waiting for?! It’s such a popular enemies to lovers story for good reason as the chemistry is off the charts for these two officemates who end up putting aside their hate and competition only to finally move on their mutual attraction.
Enjoy the perfect banter as these two spar across their desks and the sizzle when they share the same hotel room!
The Spanish Love Deception
by Elena Armas
Catalina Martin is in a bind. She does NOT want to show up single at her sister’s wedding with her ex in attendance and his new fiancé.
Nor does she want to take up her infuriating co-worker’s offer to travel to Spain and be her fake boyfriend. Yet she really has no choice but to take up the charade.
Armas’ debut novel became an instant hit with fans because it has ALL the best romance book tropes in it including forced proximity.
Whether they are circling around each other in the office or on their travels to Spain, the slowly building love connection between Catalina and Aaron really had my heart racing.
by Vi Keeland
The night I met Drew Jagger, he’d just broken into my new Park Avenue office. Only, it turned out, he wasn’t an intruder at all.
Drew was the rightful occupant of my new office. He’d been on vacation while his posh space was renovated. Which was how a scammer got away with leasing me office space that wasn’t really available for rent.
Drew took pity on me however and made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. In exchange for answering his phones while his secretary was out, he’d let me stay until I found a new place.
I probably should have acted grateful and kept my mouth shut when I overheard the advice he was spewing to his clients. But I couldn’t help giving him a piece of my mind. I never expected my body to react every time we argued.
The two of us were complete opposites. Drew was a bitter, angry, gorgeous-as-all-hell, destroyer of relationships. And my job was to help people save their marriages. The only thing the two of us had in common was the space we were sharing. And an attraction that was getting harder to deny by the day.
Egomaniac is another one of my favorite romance books because the chemistry and heat between Drew and Emerie is off the charts hot.
Put two opposites together, one who believes in marriage and one who doesn’t, and force them to share the same office space and sparks are going to fly!
Folk Around and Find Out
by Penny Reid
Hank Weller doesn’t help people. So he certainly doesn’t want to hire Charlotte Mitchell to be an exotic dancer at his club, The Pink Pony.
But after Charlotte’s messy, public divorce made Hank’s club out to be the culprit—and made her the single mother of four kids—he doesn’t need or want any additional bad press courtesy of Charlotte Mitchell.
Too bad she doesn’t understand the word no.
This is one of those romance books that you just feel good reading it and want to snuggle up with it all day until you read the entire thing.
Charlotte stole the show for me in this one as she is basically a SUPER single mom, who was willing to put herself OUT there for her family.
That meant working at a strip club which put her in Hank’s path on the daily to the point he couldn’t ignore his attraction to her even if he was her boss.
Check out my review of Folk Around and Find Out.
The Charm Offensive
by Alison Cochrun
Dev Deshpande has always believed in fairy tales, which is why he loves working on the reality dating show Ever After. But this season may be his toughest yet, when disgraced tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw is cast as its star.
Charlie doesn’t believe in true love, and only agreed to the show as a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. In front of the cameras, he’s a stiff, anxious mess with no idea how to date twenty women on national television. Behind the scenes, he’s cold, awkward, and emotionally closed-off.
As Dev fights to get Charlie to connect with the contestants on a whirlwind, worldwide tour, they begin to open up to each other, and Charlie realizes he has better chemistry with Dev than with any of his female co-stars.
But even reality TV has a script, and in order to find to happily ever after, they’ll have to reconsider whose love story gets told.
I found it impossible not to love Charlie and Dev in this forced proximity romance that brings these two together on a reality TV show.
As Dev steps in to “handle” Charlie and make him more palatable for TV, he comes to see the real person underneath.
I absolutely loved the amazing relationship development of Dev and Charlie behind the scenes but also the frank look at mental health and the need for self-care.
Check out my review of The Charm Offensive.
The Ex Talk
by Rachel Lynn Soloman
Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade. She loves her job but lately it’s one big headache due to her newest colleague, Dominic Yun.
Now she’s paired with him as her co-host for the new show, The Ex Talk, posing as exes, and sharing relationship advice live on the air.
The show is an instant hit but as the show’s popularity grows, so does their deception as the two start to fall for one another.
This was probably my first romance book that focused on public radio and I loved it so much!
Not only do you learn the ins and outs of public radio, but Soloman gives such a great fake relationship love story where Shay and Dominic fall for each other while forced to work together (in close quarters in the sound booth!) as co-hosts for a radio talk show.
Check out my review of The Ex Talk.