17 Queer “Celebrity Falls For Normal Person” Romance Books If You Liked ‘The Idea Of You’

Millions of humans recently sat down to witness uneven Prime Video rom-com The Idea of You, a movie inspired by actual fan-fiction, starring Nicholas Galitzine as a 24-year-old boy band heartthrob who falls for 40-year-old art gallery owner and single Mom Solène (Anne Hathaway) after a chance encounter at Coachella. The Idea of You is truly part of a storied tradition in romance literature: a relationship between a celebrity and a normal human being. If you’re craving a little bit more celebrity / normal person romance in your life but you want it to be gayer, have I got the list for you!


Lesbian Celebrity Romance Books In Which a Celebrity Falls for a Normal Person

For Her Consideration, by Amy Spalding

for her consideration by amy spalding book cover

The first book in Spalding’s “Out in Hollywood” series, For Her Consideration follows Nina Rice, who’s written off romance after a crushing breakup and now lives outside of L.A in her aunt’s condo, ghost-writing emails for her talent manager boss’s famously busy clients. But then Ari Fox, “a young actress on everyone’s radar,” who is hot and out and proud and also a control freak, reaches out to have a little more control over her correspondence. Nina and Ari strike up a bit of a flirtation that eventually transitions into more. But Nina has a lot of self-esteem issues to overcome in order to believe that Ari Fox truly wants to be with her. (Once you finish For Her Consideration you can check out At Her Service!)


Sizzle Reel, by Carlyn Greenwald

sizzle reel book cover

This “coming-of-age rom-com about life and love in Hollywood” is centered on Luna Roth, an aspiring cinematographer who’s just come out as bisexual at the age of 24 and is aching to get out from under the emotionally abusive thumb of her talent manager boss. She sees an opportunity when she meets Valeria Sullivan, an A-list actress prepping her directorial debut, snagging a PA job onset that she hopes will transition into something bigger. But instead it leads to ROMANCE!!!!!


Cover Story, by Rachel Lacey

two women kissing in a car with the word "cover story" in script over it

Hollywood leading lady Natalie Keane was traumatized by a stalker eight years ago, and thus quietly enlists extra security when a new threat appears on the horizon. Bodyguard to the stars Taylor Vaughn, sidelined by a recent injury, jumps at the chance to take the position, even when she learns it’ll require posing as Natalie’s girlfriend, not her bodyguard. And then the lines between fantasy and reality begin to blur.


Her Royal Highness, by Rachel Hawkins

her royal highness book cover

When Millie Quint’s sort of best-friend / sort-of girlfriend turns out to be kissing someone else, Millie’s devastated and cannot bear to see her ex again — so she applies for boarding school scholarships as far away from Houston as possible, ending up in an exclusive school in the rolling highlands of Scotland. Her roommate, Flora, is a “total princess” but also… the actual princess of Scotland. At first they can’t stand each other, but soon enough, Mille’s got herself another sort of best-friend / sort-of girlfriend. Can real life be a fairy tale?????


Reality in Check, by Emily Banting

Reality in Check - a city scape over a country hotel image

Sculptor Arte Tremaine leaves her teaching position in Italy after her grandmother’s death to help run the rundown English country hotel that was left to her and her sister, determined to make it a success despite minimal resources, painful memories, and Arte’s sister’s hope to sell it. Charlotte Beaumont is a hotel empire heiress and the host of reality TV show Hotel SOS. When Hotel SOS descends on Arte’s property, she and Charlotte initially clash — but as they grow closer, a chance develops for an ice queen and an artsy dreamer to achieve their dreams together in this age-gap romance.


The Fiancée Farce, by Alexandria Bellefleur

cover of "the fiancee farce" with two girls in pink dresses in a victorian setting

Tansy Adams has foregone romance to focus on her real true love: her family’s bookstore, passed down from her late father. Exhausted by her stepfamily’s questions about her romantic life, she invents a fake girlfriend inspired by the cover model of a bestselling book — only to cross paths with the model herself, Gemma van Dalen. Gemma’s a wild child outcast from her wealthy family and the heir to their publishing house — but she won’t inherit it unless she’s married. Tansy needs money to save the bookstore, Gemma needs a wife. Marriage could benefit them both, but of course, playing the role of affectionate fiancées quickly becomes something more…


Wish You Weren’t Here, by Erin Baldwin

Wish You weren't Here

Priya Pendley has it all: social media stardom, a popular handsome track captain boyfriend and millions of adorable fans. Juliette hates Priya Pendley and is therefore devastated to find Priya turning up at Juliette’s favorite place to be herself: Fogridge Sleepaway Camp. Worse yet, Priya is her cabinmate. Will these former childhood rivals find a way to get along or perhaps even SOMETHING MORE???? You can find out when this book comes out in June.


Everyone I Kissed Since You Got Famous, by Mae Marvel

everyone i kissed since you got famous

Coming out in June 2024, this “witty, emotional and steamy’ novel features a romance between small-town Wisconsin girl Katie Price, now an A-List star who rarely makes it home for the holidays and Wil Greene, with whom she spent many cold nights warming up together nearly a decade ago. This year, Katie’s making a rare visit home. Wil’s life and law career isn’t going quite as well as Katie’s, but her recent initiative to kiss a new person twice a week has made her a bit of an online sensation.The two have never really stopped thinking about each other, and now they’re back in each other’s lives, with another chance to make it work.


How You Get the Girl, by Anita Kelly

how you get the girl book cover

While Elle Cochrane’s star has dimmed from where it once shone — she was a college basketball star and then a failed WNBA player — she’s still Julie Parker’s idol when the two cross paths now that Elle’s foster daughter is a player on the high school basketball team Julie coaches. This is a cool twist on a story where a lead has the chance as an adult to date a formative celebrity crush!  “Come for the basketball adjacent romance,” Sai writes, “stay for the spicy scenes. You won’t be disappointed.”


I Kissed a Girl, by Jennet Alexander

I Kissed a Girl

Up-and-coming horror actress Lilah Silver is an actress aiming to climb out of B-movie mid-level fame into A-list stardom, and Noa is a makeup artist just struggling to get into the union. Lilah’s bisexual and closeted, and amires Noa for being so casually out at work. ” If you’re looking for gross insider details about making silly and/or gory horror movies, this book is for you,” writes Casey.


D’Vaughn and Kris Plan a Wedding, by Chencia C. Higgins

D'Vaughn and Kris Plan a Wedding by Chencia C. Higgins

Perhaps influencer / normal people romance novels are becoming a trope of their own! In this one, Kris Zavala’s about to make it as an influencer and thinks getting married on reality TV is the crucial next step to elevating her bland. D’Vaugn Miller thinks a big splashy fake wedding on TV might be the push she needs to come out to her family. All they’ve gotta do is convince everyone who cares about them that this is a real relationship heading towards a real marriage! “Fom the very beginning, it’s not hard for the women to fake their chemistry; it isn’t really fake,” Sai writes.


Lesbian Celebrity + Normal Person Literary Novels

Plain Bad Heroines, by emily m. danforth

This epic by the author of The Miseducation of Cameron Post has everything! In 1902, Clara and Flo are students at a New England boarding school infatuated with each other and bonding over their love for memoirist Mary MacLane. But the two are stung to death by eastern yellowjackets in the school orchard, and a string of ensuing deaths eventually leads the school to shutter, widely considered haunted and cursed. In the modern day, a film production team has descended on the abandoned school, shooting an adaptation of a book about the incident written by bisexual author Merritt Emmons, starring celebrities Harper Harper (IMHO, Harper Harper is inspired by Kristen Stewart) and Audrey Wells. Sex and romance and hauntings and curses ensue.


Celebrity / Normal Person Queer Romance Thrillers

I Want You More, by Swan Huntley

i want you more cover of a hand crushing a red fruit

This psychological thriller centers on Zara, a ghostwriter hired to pen an autobiography of celebrity chef Jane Bailey, who despite her mainstream fame, doesn’t already have a fan in Zara. Zara’s gay best friend, however, is a huge fan! Bailey insists Zara move into her East Hampton mansion for a few months in order to write the best book possible, and Zara reluctantly agrees, only to find herself gradually emotionally invaded by Jane’s self-serving mythologies, prescriptive lifestyle and emotional manipulation. A romantic and sexual relationship develops — eventually evolving into something more sinister and terrifying than Zara ever imagined. I Want You More comes out on May 21st!


The Spare Room, by Andrea Bartz

the spare room novel with a big house on the cover

Kelly’s whole entire life has fallen apart: she’s friendless, jobless, and, due to the pandemic lockdown, stuck in a tiny apartment with the man who just cancelled their wedding. She thinks she’s found a perfect ticket out of her situation when she reconnects with Sabrina, a friend from childhood who’s since become a glamorous bestselling author with a thriving social media presence and a powerful husband. Sabrina invites Kelly to spend lockdown with her and her husband in their remote Virginia mansion, and Kelly’s shocked to find herself falling for the couple — and vice versa.


Gay Celebrity Falls For Normal Guy Romance Books

Boyfriend Material, by Alexis Hall

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

In this “fun, frothy, quintessentially British romcom,” Luc is the reluctantly famous troubled son of a rock star he’s never met but now that rock star father is having a comeback, and Luc needs to clean up his image lest he thwart it. Thus he’s set up to have a nice, normal relationship with Oliver Blackwood, a barrister and an ethical vegetarian who couldn’t be more different than Luc but also stands to benefit from the fake relationship. But you know what happens to men in gay romance novels who have fake relationships!

An Unexpected Kind of Love, by Hayden Stone

an unexpected kind of love by hayden stone

This is a gay Notting Hill, basically! Aubrey Barnes lives a quiet ordinary life in London, overseeing a struggling bookshop and barely having his situation under control when a film production starring charismatic actor Blake Sinclair invades his Soho street and leases his store to shoot. In close quarters, Aubrey and Blake fall for each other, and Aubrey has to see if he’s ready to date a celebrity who isn’t even out yet.

The Charm Offensive, by Alison Cochrun

The Charm Offensive

Disgraced yet famous tech wunderkind Charlie Winshaw is the new bachelor on reality TV show Ever After — a last-ditch effort to rehabilitate his image. Renowned producer Dev Deshpande, who still believes in fairy tale love, is finding Charlie to be the series’ most challenging contestant. He’s awkward, anxious, and not really connecting with any of the contestants — in fact, the only connection he ends up making is with Dev. Author Alison Cochrun writes f/f and m/m romance and although this is obviously a book about men, there are loads of queer female characters as well.

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Riese

Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3202 articles for us.

1 Comment

  1. This is my kind of list! I loved How You Get the Girl by Anita Kelly and D’Vaughn and Kris Plan a Wedding by Chencia C. Higgins.

    I want to add The Fake Boyfriend Fiasco by Talia Hibbert – M/F with a bi MMC (by a queer author of color). I loved this joyful, ridiculous bi romance between a cautious, sarcastic tattoo artist and a golden retriever of a famous ex-footballer (British not American football). He falls in love at first sight and then realizes he has no idea what to do next. So he hires her to be his fake girlfriend. As one does. Hijinks ensue. Also a lot of sex in a fancy Spanish vacation home. The whole thing is ridiculous and over the top but the emotions felt real to me. And nobody upends romance tropes better than Talia Hibbert.

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