Summer is officially here! Teens and college students are home from school and they’re looking for fun and exciting things to spend their time doing every day. Some will go on road trips, others will most definitely go to the beach, while some will certainly fall in love. Ahh, summer flings. So, you’ve just bumped into someone who’s home for a few months and you start thinking they’re pretty cute and totally your type. You both make some memories that you’ll hold dear forever, even if you go your separate ways come September. Then it’s back to reality. There’s nothing wrong with that at all. But if you’re looking to make that summer fling as memorable as you can, you’ll want to take some pointers from a few of those inspiring couples we’ve all read about and watched on the big screen.

To get you started here are four book romances that you’re going to want your next summer fling to live up to:

Robert Kincaid and Francesca Johnson: The Bridges of Madison County by Robert James Waller (Grand Central Publishing, 1992)


Warner Bros. Pictures

Bridges of Madison CountyRobert Kincaid is a free-spirited National Geographic photographer on assignment in Iowa to take pictures of bridges. Francesca Johnson is a complacent housewife left alone while her kids and husband go to the state fair. They meet and, over the next few days, fall in love (without getting intimate), each seeing in the other what their lives might have been like. I know this isn’t one that’s all hot and steamy, but Francesca and Robert have such a wholesome desire to be together. The book doesn’t need love scenes to be a powerful story. We’ve all had our share of guys and girls that walk into our lives and leave before anything actually happens, but regardless you cherish the memories.


Jamie and Claire: Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon (Delacorte Books, 1991)

Outlander-blue-cover-198x300A magical castle sends post-World War II nurse Claire back in time to 17th century Scotland, where she runs into Jamie, a kilt-wearing heartthrob with a mysterious past. These two, each from different worlds, are proof that your soulmate doesn’t need to exist in this dimension (maybe there’s hope for me). If you haven’t watched the show based on the books then get on that right now. It’s fun, action-packed and hot. as. hell. When that handsome rogue with a shady past comes walking into your life, how can you resist? Remember, it’s only for the summer…



Cal and Abra: East of Eden by John Steinbeck (Penguin, 1992)

51gcQhUb-yL._SX325_BO1,204,203,200_Originally published in 1952, Steinbeck’s magnum opus features dozens of characters spanning hundreds of years. Cal and Abra stick out for their unorthodox courtship. Cal is the tortured bad boy who doesn’t want to be a bad boy. Abra is the seemingly perfect woman, but questions why she can’t live her life her way. She’s conflicted like Cal on how her family wants her to be a good Christian woman who marries a minister. After several years of the two being ‘friends,’ they begin a semi-secret affair. You see, Cal and Abra are hiding it, because Abra was engaged to Cal’s twin brother, Aaron, before he leaves to fight in World War I! It’s the type of affair filled with passion, truth and a shadow of wrongness.


Harry Potter and Ginny Weasley: Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling (Scholastic, 1997-2009)

Harry PotterThe budding romance between The Boy Who Lived and Ron Weasley’s little sister takes several books to get going but when sparks do fly, it’s a joy to read. The interaction between the two are few and far between, you know with Harry saving the world and all. But Rowling keeps their relationship tenderly real. Ginny and Harry are that flame you rekindle when he or she is back in town because, who knows, maybe it’ll grow into something more. I mean if you were Ginny wouldn’t you fall in love with the guy who saved you from the Basilisk?