Unconventional Valentines Day
Valentine’s Day, Say What? 8 Hot Audiobook Takes on *Real* Love

There’s more to St. Val’s Day than hearts, flowers, and ribbon-festooned teddy bears—and we’re here to prove it. February 14th is also the perfect time to throw a party, do something nice for a stranger, or show appreciation for someone you admire. Dole out those compliments! Say the kind thing you’ve been shy about saying! And hey, while you’re at it: say a kind thing to yourself, darlin’.

We picked these 8 audiobooks to help broaden your Val Day view: stories about love in many forms, about working through relationships when they’re not at their sexiest, and about holding yourself and others up, up, up.

The New York Times bestselling author of Every Day, Someday, and Two Boys Kissing is back with a short story collection on audio about love—family love, friend love, and ooey gooey love. Born from Levithan’s tradition of writing a story for his friends each Valentine’s Day, this collection brings those stories to listeners for the first time. 19 Love Songs includes fiction, nonfiction, and a story in verse; there’s something for every Valentine’s mood, and every listener, here.

Author: Eve Rodsky
Read By: Eve Rodsky

A Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick!
You know what’s not so hot? Stark inequities in the division of domestic labor. Enter Eve Rodsky with a revolutionary, real-world solution to the problem of unpaid, invisible work that women have shouldered for too long. Rodsky interviewed more than five hundred men and women from all walks of life to figure out what the invisible work in a family actually entails and how to get it all done efficiently. Now this is a true Valentine for grown-ups.

“A hands-on, real talk guide for navigating the hot-button issues that so many families struggle with.”—Reese Witherspoon

In this part-manifesto, part-memoir, the revolutionary editor who infused social consciousness into the pages of Teen Vogue explores what it means to come into your own—on your own terms. If you’re looking for wisdom and wow, this is your Val Day listen.

“A call for young women to find their voice and spark their courage—it’s a book I would have loved to discover as a young woman starting my own career.”—Reese Witherspoon

Author: Ash Ambirge
Read By: Ash Ambirge

Fresh, funny, and fearless, The Middle Finger Project is a point-by-point primer on how to get unstuck, slay imposter syndrome, trust in your own worth and ability, and become a strong, capable, wonderful, weird, brilliant, ballsy, YOU.

In Ash’s own words (and yes, she narrates the audiobook!), “Don’t worry, this isn’t a book about God, nor is it a book about Ryan Gosling (second in command). But it is a book about authority and becoming your own.”

Author: John Kenney
Read By: John Kenney

Based on his wildly popular New Yorker piece, Thurber Prize-winner John Kenney reads his hilarious collection of love poems for, well, married people. Full of wit, dynamic energy, and a heavy dose of reality, Love Poems for Married People takes the poetic form, turns it upside down, and leaves it in the dishwasher to dry.

Written and read by the creator of Elle’s “Eric Reads the News,” Here For It is a hilarious and heartfelt memoir about growing up seeing the world differently, finding unexpected hope, and experiencing every awkward, extraordinary stumble along the way.

“Pop culture–obsessed, Sedaris-level laugh-out-loud funny…[R. Eric Thomas] is one of my favorite writers.”—Lin-Manuel Miranda, Entertainment Weekly

Presenting an original audiobook performance of the stage production of David Dean Bottrell Makes Love, starring actor-Writer-Monologist, David Dean Bottrell. In this newly revised version of the show, Bottrell revisits how love and sex (or the lack thereof) have affected the course of his life from age five to the present. This audiobook features both live and in-studio recordings of the monologues from David Dean Bottrell Makes Love.

Author: Clare Pooley
Read By: Anna Cordell

Looking for smart, heartwarming fiction that will genuinely move you? In The Authenticity Project, Julian Jessop, an eccentric septuagenarian, believes that most people aren’t really honest with each other. And so he writes—in a plain, green journal—the truth about his own life and leaves it in his local café. It’s run by the incredibly tidy and efficient Monica, who furtively adds her own entry and leaves the book in the wine bar across the street. Before long, others find the green notebook and add the truths about their own deepest selves—and soon find each other In Real Life at Monica’s Café. It’s fiction, but it doesn’t have to be…

Want more St. Val Day content? Get Crafty or check out our Staff Round-up…then chase a glass of Prosecco with a fistful of candy hearts. We believe in you!