There’s nothing quite like a great bodice ripper, especially when there are multiple bodices involved. Or no bodices. Or sometimes bodices, sometimes not.
Basically, queer historical fiction is glorious, and if the Regency era in particular is your jam, these are the queer Regency romances you’re going to want to check out, faster than a lady’s curtsey.
Queer Regency Romances You'll Love
Bound By Deception
The opener to the erotic Bound series stars Lord Oliver Marsden, a man who knows he prefers men (specifically his best friend), and Lord Vincent Prescot, who hasn’t quite gotten there yet.
When Oliver learns Vincent might be a little more into men than he thinks he is (seeing as he’s apparently been dabbling at a brothel), he finds a way to switch places into the appointment, and gets way more than he bargained for.
As Oliver disovers Vincent is into BDSM, Vincent learns he might like this newest submissive enough to force him to stop denying his feelings, even if coming out ruins his relationship with his father.
The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics
I have to kick it off with my ultimate favorite in queer historical romances.
This debut follows a budding astronomer named Lucy who seeks an escape after her secret lover marries a man, and finds it in the London home of a countess looking for someone to translate an astronomy text.
Lucy, having done more work alongside her late father than anyone realizes, is more than up to the task, and when the countess—Catherine—agrees to let her attempt the work, things get a little messy in the male-dominated scientific community…and between the women experiencing a fast and furious attraction to each other.
Bonus: if you can’t get enough of Waite’s Regency f/f, 2020 saw the release of its follow-up, The Care and Feeding of Waspish Widows.
My Lord, Lady, and Gentleman
Davidson is a prolific Regency romance author, but for the super queer stuff, head straight to the Surrey SFS (that’s Sexual Freedom Society) series, which kicks off with the f/f My Lady’s Lover.
This third book in the series is her lone polyamorous Regency, and it stars artist Clayton and wealthy art patrons Lady Susanna and Lord Joseph Fenton, whose marriage is secretly on the rocks.
When Lady Susanna brings Clayton into their home to do a portrait, it turns out he could be just the ticket to saving their marriage.
It Takes Two to Tumble
Truly, what do you need to know about the delightful and steamy Seducing the Sedgwicks series, beyond that it kicks off with a hot priest that would put Fleabag to shame?
Ben Sedgwick is a quiet country vicar whose heart is stolen by three kids who turn out to belong to a very intriguing naval captain.
And while Captain Phillip Dacre had planned to get out of England as soon as he returned, he can’t deny that Ben makes an excellent argument for staying...
If you like your romances a little quieter and less All About the Romance, you'll appreciate Mendlesohn’s novel about Anne, whose life goes through a drastic change when she’s forced to move in with her aunt and uncle after her father dies and her best friend moves away.
Eventually, Anne is faced with a choice that will lead to two very different futures: go back home with a male suitor, or stick around with a way-too-compelling widow?
The True Queen
Following up on Sorcerer to the Crown, this Malaysian fantasy gives us sisters, amnesia, English politics, and fae—what more could we ask for?
Muna and Sakti don’t remember anything when they wake up on a beach, but they know they share a sisterly bond…and that they’re cursed, something that can only be undone by magic Muna will have to travel to England to learn.
With Sakti is at death’s door, it’s up to Muna to navigate a magical academy, her past, and a crush on classmate Henrietta.
The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics
Lucy Muchelney is excited by the letter she finds from the Countess of Moth, which invites her to translate an important French astronomy text. She never imagined that the countess herself would prove to be even more fascinating.
The countess, Catherine St Day, wants to honor her late husband and fulfill his scientific legacy. She has no intention of finding love, but the days they spend together find them falling for one another.
But can such a new romance survive the resurfacing of old wounds? Or are Lucy and Catherine destined to be star-crossed?
Potentially the first lesbian Regency romance, this 1986 novel stars Lady Joanna Sinclair, a proper lady who’s horrified when she sees Lady Diana March dressed like a man on horseback.
But while she may not dig Diana’s wardrobe, Joanna is certainly attracted to her strange and remarkable brain. Thanks to Diana, Joanna learns to break free of the brother who wants to keep her down, and learns what it means to truly fall in love.
Her Duchess to Desire
Anne, the Duchess of Hawthorne, doesn't want to be known as the Ice Queen of London society anymore. When she leaves her loveless marriage with the duke to find a real companion, Letitia Barrow seizes the opportunity to design Anne's new home.
The fact that the duchess leaves Letitia weak in the knees is just a dangerous, tempting perk of the job.
A Fashionable Indulgence
While most of Charles’s formidable body of queer romance is set in the Victorian era, you can find a notable exception in her Society of Gentlemen series.
The series kicks off with this sexy tale about a potential heir who falls for the man teaching him how to fancy himself up to fit in with the ton.
Harry Vane has just learned that he’s of noble birth, and he needs a serious etiquette class to catch up. Julius Norreys is just the uptight expert to teach him.
But what Julius doesn’t realize is that Harry’s exactly what he needs, too, to repair himself after Waterloo nearly broke him.
Unmasked by the Marquess
If ever there were an author whose appearance twice on such a list would be utterly unsurprising, it’s Sebastian, who does something particularly notable for queer Regency romance here with a male/nonbinary pairing.
The man in question is Alistair, Marquess of Pembroke, who finds himself wholly attracted to the man who shows up at his door looking for a favor, only to learn they aren't a man after all, but someone masquerading as an old friend in order to help get said friend’s sister married off.
It’s all a little complicated, especially since, even as a woman, the person formerly pretending to be Robert Selby wouldn’t exactly be the marrying kind for a marquess.
But when neither one of them can resist the attraction, it’s up to true love to prevail. (And if you’re wondering if Sebastian’s done f/f Regency too, the answer is yes! Check out A Little Light Mischief, a lovely novella in the Turner Series.)
She Whom I Love
How can you not love love triangles where everyone’s a winner? That’s the case in this polyam Regency starring best friends who are interested in the same guy, only to find the most perfect fit of all is when they’re all together.
Actress Marguerite wants lady’s maid Sophie, Sophie wants Marguerite, and both are compelled by tradesman James, who attempts to court both in secret.
When all of their truths come to light, the three end up with more than they ever dreamed.
A Lady for a Duke
When Viola Carroll was presumed dead at the Battle of Waterloo, she chose not to correct the record. Instead, she found an opportunity to live a more honest and fulfilling life for herself.
Her closest companion, the Duke of Gracewood, knows only that Viola died. This event leaves him devastated until several years later, when their families reconnect. Both Viola and the duke feel old feelings give rise to new feelings, making them dare to try what once seemed impossible.