The super spicy, dark romantic comedy full of murder, chaos, and sizzling chemistry, Butcher & Blackbird by Brynne Weaver has become a viral sensation on TiKTok so of course the holds list is getting longer and longer. If you read it already and need something similar, or if you’re looking for something to read until your hold comes in, here are a few readalikes that are definitely not for the faint of heart.
Belladonna by Adalyn Grace
Orphaned as a baby, nineteen-year-old Signa has been raised by a string of guardians, each one more interested in her wealth than her well-being—and each has met an untimely end. Her remaining relatives are the elusive Hawthornes, an eccentric family living at Thorn Grove, an estate both glittering and gloomy. Its patriarch mourns his late wife through wild parties, while his son grapples for control of the family’s waning reputation, and his daughter suffers from a mysterious illness. But when their mother’s restless spirit appears claiming she was poisoned, Signa realizes that the family she depends on could be in grave danger and enlists the help of a surly stable boy to hunt down the killer.
However, Signa’s best chance of uncovering the murderer is an alliance with Death himself, a fascinating, dangerous shadow who has never been far from her side. Though he’s made her life a living hell, Death shows Signa that their growing connection may be more powerful—and more irresistible—than she ever dared imagine.
You, Again by Kate Goldbeck
When Ari and Josh first meet, the wrong kind of sparks fly. They hate each other. Instantly.
A free-spirited, struggling comedian who likes to keep things casual, Ari sublets, takes gigs, and she never sleeps over after hooking up. Born-and-bred Manhattanite Josh has ambitious plans: Take the culinary world by storm, find The One, and make her breakfast in his spotless kitchen. They have absolutely nothing in common . . . except that they happen to be sleeping with the same woman.
Ari and Josh never expect their paths to cross again. But years later, as they’re both reeling from ego-bruising breakups, a chance encounter leads to a surprising connection: friendship. Turns out, spending time with your former nemesis is fun when you’re too sad to hate each other—and too sad for hate sex.
As friends-without-benefits, they find comfort in late-night Netflix binges, swiping through each other’s online dating profiles, and bickering across boroughs. It’s better than romance. Until one night, the unspoken boundaries of their platonic relationship begin to blur.
Hold Me Close by Megan Hart
Effie and Heath are famous. Not for anything they did, but for what happened to them as teenagers. Abducted and abused by the same man, they turned to each other for comfort until they were finally able to make their escape.
Now adults, their relationship is fraught with guilt and despair. Whether fighting or making love, their passion is strong enough to destroy them bothand Effie’s not about to let that happen. She knows it’s time for her to have a “normal” relationship, and Heath is nothing but a constant reminder of the dark past they share. Heath, on the other hand, knows Effie is the only woman he can ever love. She may want to forget what happened, but he’s convinced that they must face their past together in order to move forward. So while Effie continues to bring new men into her life, Heath becomes obsessed with proving he’s the one she needs.
Then a new crisis arises and Effie begins to lose every scrap of self-control she ever had. As she struggles against her desire to return to the one man who understands her, she discovers that sometimes the only safety you find is with the person who is the most dangerous for you.