Thursday, September 8, 2016

THEMES & TROPES: Employer/Employee Romance

I love finding commonalities between my favorite books and how that helps define me as a reader.  So I decided to do a random feature where I focus on a specific theme/trope and provide a few examples of it. 


These are romances where one of the protagonists works for the other protagonist.  This can be a temporary situation or a regular occurrence.  What I find so interesting in these stories is how authors handle the power dynamics that are already in play within the relationship and how those translate once personal feelings get into the mix.  I also found myself wanting more books where the heroine is the boss of the hero.  I tried to find more examples, but had some trouble.

Historical Romance

Duke of My Heart (Season for Scandal, #1)
Duke of My Heart by Kelly Bowen (My Review)
Maximus Harcourt, Duke of Alderidge, hires Ivory Moore to be his family's crisis manager when his sister becomes involved in a scandal.

A Gentleman's Position (Society of Gentlemen, #3)
A Gentleman's Position by K.J. Charles (My Review)
David Cyprian is the valet of Lord Richard Vane.

And Then He Kissed Her (Girl Bachelors, #1)
And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke
Emma Dove is Viscount Marlowe's secretary.

Duke of Sin (Maiden Lane, #10)
Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt (My Review)
Bridget Crumb is the Duke of Montgomery's housekeeper.

The Raven Prince (Princes Trilogy, #1)
The Raven Prince by Elizabeth Hoyt
Anna Wren is hired as the Earl of Swartingham's secretary.

'Twas the Night after Christmas (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #6; The Duke's Men, #0.5)
Twas the Night After Christmas by Sabrina Jeffries (My Review)
Camilla Stuart is the lady's companion to the Earl of Devonmont's mother.

Luck Is No Lady (Fallen Ladies, #1)
Luck Is No Lady by Amy Sandas (My Review)
Roderick Bentley hires Emma Chadwick as the bookkeeper for his gambling club.

Married By Morning (The Hathaways, #4)
Married by Morning by Lisa Kleypas
Catherine Marks is the governess/companion for the sisters of Lord Ramsey.

Yours Until Dawn (Fairleigh Sisters, #3)
Yours Until Dawn by Teresa Medeiros
Samantha Wickersham is the nurse for the blind Earl of Sheffield.

Courting Miss Hattie
Courting Miss Hattie by Pamela Morsi
Ancil Drayton is one of Hattie Colfax's farmhands.

When She Was Wicked (Honeycote, #1)
When She Was Wicked by Anne Barton (My Review)
The Duke of Huntford hires/blackmails Anabelle Honeycote into being his sisters' live-in dressmaker.

Contemporary Romance

It Had to Be You (Chicago Stars, #1)
It Had To Be You by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Dan Calebow is the head coach of the professional football team that Phoebe Somerville owns.

Match Me If You Can (Chicago Stars, #6)
Match Me If You Can by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Annabelle Granger is hired by Heath Champion to be his matchmaker.

Saving the CEO (49th Floor, #1)
Saving the CEO by Jenny Holiday (My Review)
Real estate mogul Jack Winter temporarily hires math genius/bartender Cassie James to pose as one of his employees to help him push through a highly sought after deal.

Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy

Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter, #1)
Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh (My Review)
Raphael hires Elena Deveraux to hunt down a rampaging archangel. 



  1. I definitely like this theme in romance, as long as it's done well. I've read a ton, but I'm having a difficult time thinking of any at the moment. I do love It Had to Be You and Match Me If You Can. Oh, and Married by Morning. Oh, I just read some Sarah Morgan books, and there was one where the heroine sort of worked for the hero. It was category romance. And I know I've read quite a few historicals where the heroine is the governess. Doesn't JQ have one? In the Smythe-Smith series?

  2. oh this is such a great list you have here. I really love Then He Kissed Me. Angels Blood was just fantastic, an explosive couple for sure. I just love this trope so very much.


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