17 Unputdownable Books That Deprived Me of Sleep and Consumed Me in the Best Way

Have you ever read an unputdownable book in less than 24 hours because it was so incredibly good that all work, family, sleep, and food needs were thrown out the window?

Unputdownable books are the books you can’t put down because the storyline and characters are so completely gripping that no responsibility is getting in the way of you finishing these books in one sitting. These are the books where I end up feeling like a zombie the day after reading them because “just one more chapter” turns into reading the whole damn book.

If you can relate but LOVE the feeling of reading an unputdownable book then I’ve got # books below that you must add to your TBR list. Check them out and listen to the podcast:

Episode 28: Unputdownable Books You’ll Read in One Sitting

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Unputdownable Books That Hook You With Suspense

These are the unputdownable books that you can’t put down because you just have to know what happens next.  There are also the books that have a thread running through them that you need answers about or can’t wait to see how it resolves. It’s something that has you curious or guessing or intrigued about that is such a strong feeling it won’t let you put the book down and carry on with your day.

Drive by Kate Stewart is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Drive
by Kate Stewart

At the height of my career, I had the life I wanted, the life I’d always envisioned. I’d found my tempo, my rhythm. Then I received a phone call that left me off key. You see, my favorite songs had a way of playing simultaneously. I was in love with one man’s beats and another’s lyrics.

But when it came to the soundtrack of a life, how could anyone choose a favorite song? So, to erase any doubt, I ditched my first-class ticket and decided to take a drive, fixed on the rearview. Two days. One playlist. And the long road home to the man who was waiting for me.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This book is an unputdownable love triangle romance where Stella, the music journalist, falls for both the drummer and the newspaper editor. While reading the story that relives her past, you have no idea which man she ultimately chooses! Just thinking about this book gives me the chills because it’s so good. Trust me when I say you’ll be falling for Reid and Nate right along with Stella and reading this in one sitting because you won’t be able to put it down!  

Related: Best Romance Books of All Time

People We Meet on Vacation is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

People We Meet on Vacation
by Emily Henry

Poppy and Alex have nothing in common, and somehow, ever since a fateful car share home from college many years ago, they are the very best of friends. For most of the year they live far apart but every summer, for a decade, they have taken one glorious week of vacation together. Until two years ago, when they ruined everything. They haven’t spoken since.
 
When Poppy decides to convince her best friend to take one more vacation together and lay everything on the table to make it all right, Alex agrees to join her. Now she has a week to fix everything. If only she can get around the one big truth that has always stood quietly in the middle of their seemingly perfect relationship.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This is by far my favorite Emily Henry book! This was an unputdownable book for me because I just had to know why Alex and Poppy stopped talking. I read chapter after chapter, following along with their summer vacations, to finally get the answer and I was hooked until the very end.

Related: Best Friends to Lovers Books

The Mountain Between Us is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

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, is en route to her wedding. But when unthinkable tragedy strikes, the pair find themselves stranded in Utah’s most remote wilderness in the heart of winter, badly injured and miles from civilization.

Without food or shelter, and only Ben’s mountain climbing gear to protect themselves, 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. Days in the mountains become weeks, as their hope for rescue dwindles. How will they make it out of the wilderness and if they do, how will this experience change them forever?

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This unputdownable book is INTENSE! I couldn’t put it down because I wasn’t quite sure what was going to happen multiple times throughout this book. Martin writes incredibly suspenseful scenes that had me quickly turning page after page to know WHAT HAPPENS??!!!

In the Likely Event is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

In the Likely Event
by Rebecca Yarros

When Izzy Astor gets on a plane to go home, she isn’t expecting much. It’s the usual holiday travel experience: busy, crowded, stressful. Then she spots her seatmate, who is anything but ordinary. Nate Phelan sports dark hair, blue eyes, and a deliciously rugged charm that Izzy can’t resist.

Their connection is undeniable. Izzy never believed in destiny before, but she does now. Just ninety seconds after takeoff, their plane goes down in the Missouri River.

Their lives change. They change. Nate goes on to a career in the military while Izzy finds her way into politics. Despite a few chance encounters over the years, the timing never feels right. Then comes a high-stakes reunion in Afghanistan, where Nate is tasked with protecting Izzy’s life. He’ll do anything to keep her safe. And everything to win her heart.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: You know that a book is going to be good when you have no interest in putting it down, even if you’re on vacation and should be spending quality time with family. 😊 Yarros captures your attention right from the get go cementing Izzy and Nate as soulmates from that first fateful day on the plane. What transpires is a romance that spans ten years, told from dual POVs that alternates between the present and moments from the past that keeps their happily ever after just out of reach, making it unputdownable to the very end!

Read my book review of In the Likely Event.

Related: Best Military Romance Books

Unputdownable Books With Amazing Character Development

These are the unputdownable books that have the most amazing character development. They grip you and make you feel for these people that you have to keep reading to get to their happily ever after.

Skin is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Skin
by B.B. Easton

At age 15, BB was planning her wedding to the punk hero of Peach State High, Lance Hightower. Trying desperately to gain his attention by not eating and shaving her head, she instead ends up the object of Ronald “Knight” McKnight’s attention.  The senior who’s anger and violence scares everyone, including BB, but who ultimately ends up getting under her skin and changing her life forever.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: In my book review of Skin, I wrote that my advice to readers when you reading this book is to start reading it first thing in the morning on a weekend because you will not be able to put this teen romance book down once you start.

It is the most unforgettable romance book with gritty, damaged, flawed, raw and devastatingly real teens in a coming of age tale laced with neglectful parents, poor self-esteem and the need to be loved. Knight and BB keep you glued to the page – you won’t be able to put it down!

Read my full book review of Skin.

Autoboyography is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Autoboyography
by Christina Lauren

When Tanner Scott’s family moved from California to Utah three years ago, he was forced to push his identity back into the closet. Now he only has one semester left of high school before he can move out of state.

But when his best friend encourages him to take the coveted Seminar at Provost High, he meets TA Sebastian Brother. Now Tanner has to not only write a book in four months, he also has to try and not fall in love with his mentor.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This book was simply magnificent. Absolutely one of Christina Lauren’s finest and a book completely unputdownable. The heartbreaking romance between Tanner and Sebastian was wonderful but there is so much more to this teen romance book. Read it for a reminder of what it means to love unconditionally, to learn about the Mormon religion and lifestyle and to read the most amazing coming of age story you won’t be able to put down.

Read my book review of Autoboyography.

Related: Best MM Romance Books

Halo is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Halo
by Brooke Blaine and Ella Frank

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 man. 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.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: Halo is book one in a three-book trilogy and trust me when I say that after reading this rock star romance book you’ll be grabbing all of the books! The tension and smoking hot chemistry between Halo and Viper in this book is off the charts, and I couldn’t put it down.

I would sign up in a heartbeat to have an alpha man like Viper relentlessly flirt and pursue me like he does Halo. He is just THAT HOT I had to keep reading for more and more.

Related: Best Gay Romance Novels

Reminders of Him is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Reminders of Him
by Colleen Hoover

After serving five years in prison for a tragic mistake, Kenna Rowan returns to the town where it all went wrong, hoping to reunite with her four-year-old daughter. But the bridges Kenna burned are proving impossible to rebuild. Everyone in her daughter’s life is determined to shut Kenna out, no matter how hard she works to prove herself.

The only person who hasn’t closed the door on her completely is Ledger Ward, a local bar owner and one of the few remaining links to Kenna’s daughter. But if anyone were to discover how Ledger is slowly becoming an important part of Kenna’s life, both would risk losing the trust of everyone important to them.

The two form a connection despite the pressure surrounding them, but as their romance grows, so does the risk. Kenna must find a way to absolve the mistakes of her past in order to build a future out of hope and healing.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: Kenna absolutely steals the show in this book as a young woman who has endured so much, lived through so much, and despite being continually knocked down, does not give up.  She is the epitome of a strong heroine, and her struggles and strength kept me glued to the pages. It is definitely one of my favorite Colleen Hoover books that I could not put down.

Check out my book review of Reminders of Him.

Fangirl Down is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Fangirl Down
by Tessa Bailey

Wells Whitaker was once golf’s hottest rising star, but his career has taken a nosedive leaving him with only one fan who’s always believed in him. Yet when Wells quits in a blaze of glory, his fangirl finally goes home leaving him with nothing. Determined to make things right, Wells shows up at Josephine’s door with a wild proposal: be his new caddy, help him turn his game around, and split the prize money.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: After finishing this book in one sitting, I declared, “this is why I read romance!” It has everything that I love about the genre- amazing main characters, a unqiue story, and wonderful writing from Tessa Bailey that made it unputdownable.

It’s a book that once you start reading, you don’t want to put down because every page is better and better and you just want to know more about Josephine and Wells. Be prepared to fall for this grumpy pro golfer when starting it!

Read my book review of Fangirl Down.

Related: Best Sports Romance Books

The Flatshare is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

The Flatshare
by Beth O’Leary

After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare. Leon, a night shift worker, will take the apartment during the day, and Tiffy can have it nights and weekends. He’ll only ever be there when she’s at the office. In fact, they’ll never even have to meet.

Tiffy and Leon start writing each other notes – first about what day is garbage day, and politely establishing what leftovers are up for grabs, and the evergreen question of whether the toilet seat should stay up or down. Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more. But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea…especially if you’ve never met.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This is an unputdownable book because it is one of the best slow burn romances I’ve ever read. I loved the evolution of their note sharing that went from one word answers to thoughtful questions as Tiffy and Leon grew closer, even sight unseen. Their budding relationship as well as their side stories are so compelling that I was unable to put the book down until I reached the conclusion.

Check out my book review of The Flatshare.

Related: Falling in Love Anonymously: Romance Books Where The Characters Fall Sight Unseen

Playing with Fire is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Playing With Fire
by L.J. Shen

Grace Shaw and West St. Claire are arctic opposites. She is the strange girl from the food truck.
He is the mysterious underground fighter who stormed into her sleepy Texan college town on his motorcycle one day, and has been wreaking havoc since. She is invisible to the world. He is the town’s beloved bad boy.

When West thrusts himself into Grace’s quiet life, she scrambles to figure out if he is her happily-ever-after or tragic ending. But the harder she pushes him away, the more he pulls her out of her shell. Grace doesn’t know much about anything beyond her town’s limits, but she does know this:
She is falling in love with the hottest guy in Sheridan U. And when you play with fire—you ought to get burned.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: My heart bleeds for heroes with wounded hearts and that is West – the man who puts his body on the line for the demons he’s carrying. These two young characters have such captivating backstories that slowly emerge and keep you on the edge of your seat while watching them fall for each other. It is one of the best unputdownable books and one of the best romance novels of 2020.

Read my book review of Playing With Fire.

Unputdownable Books That Are All-Consuming

These are the unputdownable books that are just so all-consuming from the characters, to the setting to the storyline that reading “just one more chapter” isn’t good enough. They suck you in from the very first chapter and that grip just won’t loosen until you hit the end.

Paradise is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Paradise
by Judith McNaught

Matthew Farrell is well known for his corporate take overs but he was once the boy from the opposite side of the tracks. That didn’t stop, 18 year-old Meredith Bancroft from disappearing from the country club with Matt and finding a once in a lifetime connection. Only the department store heirriss ultimately betrayed him.

Now years later, Matt’s back and ready to exact some revenge on Meredith and the Bancroft empire, only to find that their past is mixed up in lies and deceit and their feelings returning with a vengeance.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: Of course the book that started my love of romance books is one of the most unputdownable books! I’ve reread it so many times and even still I find it hard to put down and not read it from cover to cover in one sitting.

It is the ultimate second chance romance book filled with young love, heartbreak, miscommunication and deceit that tore two lovers apart only to come face to face with their past years later.  I loved the tension in their reunion and the arrangement Matt forces on Meredith which finally enables the truth to come out. It’s definitely one not to be missed.

A Thousand Boy Kisses is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

A Thousand Boy Kisses
by Tillie Cole

One kiss lasts a moment. But a thousand kisses can last a lifetime. One boy. One girl. A bond that is forged in an instant and cherished for a decade. A bond that neither time nor distance can break. A bond that will last forever. Or so they believe.

When seventeen-year-old Rune Kristiansen returns from his native Norway to the sleepy town of Blossom Grove, Georgia, where he befriended Poppy Litchfield as a child, he has just one thing on his mind. Why did the girl who was one half of his soul, who promised to wait faithfully for his return, cut him off without a word of explanation? Rune’s heart was broken two years ago when Poppy fell silent. When he discovers the truth, he finds that the greatest heartache is yet to come.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: A Thousand Boy Kisses is one of the best books about teenage romance that I’ve ever read. I had to read it cover to cover in one sitting because I could not fathom how Cole was going to give the reader a happy ending. You have to read it to the very end to make the heartbreak that compels you to read it all worth it.

Related: Books That Will Make You Ugly Cry

The Edge of Never is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

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 in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, 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, but there is more to Andrew than Camryn realizes. Will his secret push them inseparably together — or destroy them forever?

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: When I picked up this book I thought I’d be reading a fun, new adult romance but I was so wrong. This forced proximity romance that brings too people close while traveling by bus is so emotionally gripping that eventually takes you in a direction you didn’t see coming. I couldn’t read the last chapters fast enough while reading it!

The Simple Wild is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

The Simple Wild
by K.A. Tucker

Calla hasn’t been back to Alaska since she was two years old, but now she’s back to repair her relationship with her father before it’s too late. She just doesn’t know if she’s more at risk from the wilds of Alaska or the obnoxious charter pilot she meets and soon falls for.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: Tucker’s book is completely unputdownable because it sucks you right into the Alaskan wilderness as if you were right there with Calla, experiencing it right along with her. Of course the opposites attract love story wis equally as compelling along with the relationship repairs she tries to mend with her father. It was a book (and series!) I could not put down.

Check out my book review of The Simple Wild.

Related: Romance Books That Inspire Travel

Unputdownable Books That Are WILD

Some unputdownable books are just so wild that you can’t believe what you’re reading and can’t put the book down because you have to know what crazy thing will happen next!

The Risk is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

The Risk
by S.T. Abby

I didn’t expect him. I didn’t want to fall in love. But I can’t let him go. Logan Bennett makes the world a safer place. He’s brilliant. He’s a hero. He locks away the sick and depraved. But while he’s saving lives, I’m taking them. Collecting the debts that are owed to me.

Ten years ago, they took from me. Now I’m taking from them. One name at a time. They never see me coming, until I paint their walls red. Logan doesn’t know how they hurt me. He doesn’t know about the screams they ignored. He doesn’t know how twisted that town really is.

He just knows people are dying. He doesn’t know he’s in love with the one taking their lives. But in the end, will Logan choose them? Or will we watch them burn together?

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: This book is SO addicting and it is only book one in the Mindf*ck series! Seriously, the fast pace of the writing, the suspense of the story, and the complete craziness of an FBI agent falling for a woman dropping men like it’s nobody’s business will have you reading this in one setting and scrambling for the next book.

Related: Mindf*ck Romance Books

Pen Pal is one of the best unputdownable books according to She Reads Romance Books. See her entire list of books you can't put down!

Pen Pal
by J.T. Geissinger

The first letter arrived the day my husband was buried. It was postmarked from the state penitentiary, and contained a single sentence: I’ll wait forever if I have to. It was signed by Dante, a man I didn’t know. Out of simple curiosity, I wrote back to ask him what exactly he was waiting for. His reply? You.

I told the mystery man he had the wrong girl. He said he didn’t. I said we’d never met, but he said I was wrong. We went back and forth, exchanging letters every week that grew increasingly more intimate. Then one day, the letters stopped. When I found out why, it was already too late. Dante was at my doorstep. And nothing on earth could have prepared me for what happened next.

Why It’s a Book You Can’t Put Down: Geissinger is one of my favorite authors because her writing ability is unlike any other and Pen Pal is an example of that. The suspense around Dante, Aiden and Kayla is just spectacular that you’re constantly guessing and wondering what is happening that you have to keep reading to get answers. It’s fantastic!

Related: Dark Romance Books

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Check out She Reads Romance Books' list of unputdownable books that she HAD to read in one sitting they were that good!
Leslie Murphy is the owner and writer of She Reads Romance Books.

Why Trust She Reads Romance Books?

Leslie is the founder, writer, and producer of She Reads Romance Books (and the She Reads Romance Books Podcast), an online book community focused on romance books and the readers who love them because life is better with a love story.

Leslie reads 150 romance books a year and has been called a "book expert" by CNN. Reading romance is her passion and she cultivates her book lists with the best books worth reading in the genre. Leslie graduated magna cum laude from Davidson College where she honed her writing skills and also holds two Master's degrees. Join her community in the She Reads Romance Books Reader Lounge.

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2 thoughts on “17 Unputdownable Books That Deprived Me of Sleep and Consumed Me in the Best Way”

  1. Looks like I’ve got a brand new stack of 2024 TBR cut out for me ! As always, I look forward to your recs. Happy belated New Year !

    Reply

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