Classic Romance - Which One First? Rachel Gibson Edition

Classic Romance: Which One First?I asked recently on the SBTB Facebook page which author I should do a Classic Romance: Which One First? list building entry for, and the response was rapidfire listing of really awesome names in romance. Rachel Gibson's name jumped out at me because so far, we've been talking about historical romance authors, but Gibson's been publishing romance since 1998 and has more than 15 books to her credit – which can be overwhelming if you're looking at a row of them in the bookstore and aren't sure which one to pick!

Plus, she has a new book out this week (Rescue Me, out 5/29 [ A | BN | K | S | ARe ]), and when I received a copy of it, my first thought was, “Darn it, I keep meaning to read more of her backlist,” but, hey, I'm not sure where to start either. I can't be alone in that! 

So, which Rachel Gibson contemporary romance do you recommend new readers try first? Which is your favorite? 

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  1. 1
    Pamiam says:

    I love Rachel Gibson books and it would be hard to recommend one over the other but I will throw Sex, Lies, and Online Dating out there.  It is the first of a 4 book series and it is a series that I will read again

  2. 2
    Catherine says:

    I’ll second “Sex, Lies and Online Dating” as a good starting point. My first was “Nothing But Trouble” and I didn’t have any trouble jumping around within the hockey series (many of which I really enjoyed).

  3. 3
    phoebec61 says:

    True Confessions. My first Gibson and still my favorite.

  4. 4
    Elyssa says:

    Without question… SEE JANE SCORE, hockey hero and the newly hired pr heroine. Lots of fun, sexy, and the hero has a very memorable tattoo.

    Or THE TROUBLE WITH VALENTINE’S DAY. I also love that one.

  5. 5
    TMS says:

    SEE JANE SCORE. Loved that book!

  6. 6
    Helena Sapphire says:

    See Jane Score.

  7. 7
    TrishJ says:

    My favorite was also See Jane Score.  It has everything a good romance book should have.

  8. 8
    ksattler says:

    I’d recommend a person starts with True Confessions or Sex, Lies, and Online Dating.

    Here’s what I’ve read:

    1. Sex, Lies, and Online Dating – Probably favorite in series
    2. I’m in No Mood For Love – fun story but wished there were fewer references to heroine being a “girly girl” and the hero being “all male.” Would have been fine just seeing it played out.
    3. Tangled Up in You – good story
    4. Not Another Bad Date – fun story but didn’t like the “ghost” aspect

    The Trouble With Valentine’s Day – Was my first and I love it but it comes after True Confessions.  Stood on its own, but I would have had more fun if I had read TC first.

    True Confessions – I’d start here.

    Truly, Madly, Yours – read this prior to Tangled Up in You as the characters in here show up in Tangled and further along in their HEA.

    See Jane Score – liked it!

    Lola Carlyle Reveals All – good but don’t start here

    Daisy’s Back in Town – fun read

  9. 9
    kkw says:

    I did not read the Chinooks hockey books in order, and while they do totally stand alone, I regret it.  It doesn’t keep me up nights or anything, and I actually still haven’t read all of them, but all the same I would not suggest *starting* with See Jane Score.

    Sex Lies and Online Dating is the beginning and the best of a different series, so from what I’ve read I’d say start there.

    My least favorite of what I’ve read would be Daisy’s Back in Town, I’m in No Mood for Love, and True Love and Other Disasters, for whatever that’s worth.  I would certainly not call them STA; I have never disliked any of her books as of yet.  Just not the best start point.


  10. 10

    Simply Irresistible was my first and IMO it is the best.  See Jane Score drove me nuts.  One of the biggest errors EVER in a book is in that one.  Miss Jane is sitting in Chicago and yet she is able to look out over Lake Michigan and see Detroit.  :::::thud::::  A classic WTF?!!!?

  11. 11
    Jessica_HookEm says:

    I started with Lola Carlyle Reveals All and liked but didn’t love it.  As a result, I didn’t read any of her other books until I saw y’all’s recommendations for Nothing But Trouble.  Now I have all of her books, except the new one, sitting in my to be read when I finish the CPA exam pile.  I miss reading for fun.  I loved Simply Irresistible and Nothing But Trouble so I’d recommend those!

  12. 12

    I much prefer her early books. And I admit to loving both Simply Irresistible and Lola Carlyle Reveals All – though I don’t think the second one is a popular choice.

    Rachel Gibson was one of the first contemporary authors I read and she still remains a favorite, though I haven’t really liked her last couple of books.

  13. 13

    True Confessions, hands down. Love this book, still go back to reread it. Someday I’m gonna get that MZBHVN license plate…

  14. 14
    Bibliophile says:

    As it happens, I have been glomming Gibson’s backlist and just read three of her books back to back. You really have to consider taste when choosing your first Gibson book. Her Seattle Chinooks sports romances take place in a completely different environment than the small town books, so I would say read See Jane Score if you want a big city sports romance, and True Confessions if you like small town romances complete with eccentric and entertaining side characters.

  15. 15
    Lizzie R says:

    I read See Jane Score first and it’s still my favourite (Luc and that tattoo).  I also really enjoyed True Confessions and The Trouble with Valentine’s day, becos the small town and it’s characters were lovely.  I actually like the secret baby trope so I loved Daisy’s Back in Town although it was a bit more serious than usual for a RG book – also the secret baby is a teenager with a mohican, dog collar and I think an eyebrow piercing so that gets quite a reaction in a small Texas town.
    Last year’s Any Man of Mine tends to push a lot of buttons because Sam was a bit of an asshat so I wouldn’t suggest starting there, altho’ that’s one of my favourites and there’s a great scene where Sam drives hours in the pouring rain to see Autumn and she opens her door and he’s soaked because he just couldn’t keep away – lovely.

  16. 16
    Jessica Hunt says:

    I echo the recommendations for TRUE CONFESSIONS (sexual tension btw H/H is palpable) and SEE JANE SCORE (love the hockey backdrop).

  17. 17
    elladrake says:

    Another vote for See Jane Score. While I do agree with kkw that starting with the first book in the Chinooks series might be best, See Jane Score was the first of Gibson’s that I read and I’ve re-read three times since. When readers who don’t normally read contemporary ask me for a recommendation, it’s usually the one I name.

  18. 18
    Ande Lyons says:

    I la la LOVE Rachel Gibson! TRUE CONFESSIONS and SEE JANE SCORE are fabulous… and terrific stories to start one’s journey into RG… along with LOLA CARLYLE REVEALS ALL and TANGLED UP IN YOU. Perfect beach/pool reads with HEA endings… yay!

  19. 19
    Rita says:

    As a huge fan of Rachel Gibson I’d recommend “See Jane Score”. It’s one of my go-to books when I get in a reading slump. My copy is worn to the point that the cover is completely frayed.

  20. 20
    Lawrencemichelle says:

    Truly, Madly, Yours is by far her best book! LOVE THAT BOOK TO DEATH!

  21. 21
    Kristi Davis says:

    See Jane Score is the BEST BOOK EVER! :) Must read first!

  22. 22
    Bones says:

    They’re all soooo great. My first was Nothing But Trouble. I LOVE hockey so, I ripped through those pretty fast. I have to stay my favorite is True Love and Other Disasters.

  23. 23
    Misty H says:

    Daisy’s Back In Town was my first and I think one of my favorites of Rachel Gibson’s books. From that book on she’s always been on my must have lists.

  24. 24

    I love the Chinooks series, but not See Jane Score for some reason. Simply Irresistible is one of the few books that I have worn to the point of having to buy a second copy because the first was coming apart in my hands.

  25. 25
    Allisong says:

    I really liked the Chinooks series and started with Simply Irresistible with See Jane Score and The Trouble with Valentines Day being favorites. I also enjoyed the Sex, Lies series which may be a better starting point for newbies to Rachel Gibson.

  26. 26
    samalamadingdong says:

    Loved See Jane Score and Nothing But Trouble from the Chinooks series. And I loved Sex, Lies, and Online Dating. That’s the first book I read of hers and I was impressed by her voice.

    I always describe her as a solid writer. There are books that I absolutely love by her (See Jane Score) and other books that feel like the characters are mistaking mind-blowing sex for love (Tangled Up, True Love and Other Disasters).

  27. 27
    Bnbsrose says:

    It’s like picking your favorite child! I love the Seattle Chinook series, and I love that the last couple have been published right at Stanley Cup time. Kind of funny, because watching hockey makes me dizzy. Well, so do her hockey romances, but it’s a different kind of dizzy….

  28. 28
    Secretelf4 says:

    I just read Simply Irrisistable last month and loved it. It cleansed my palate nicely after all of the paranormal romance that has been floating around as “must reads.”
    Thanks for the advice ladies! I’m on my way to buy a couple right now…

  29. 29
    frannie says:

    First I was going to suggest Daisy’s Back in Town, then other commenters reminded me how good See Jane Score is (best title ever, and yeah…that tattoo), and now I remember how much I love True Love and Other Disasters…they’re all terrific and the new one is waiting for me, yay!

  30. 30
    Julieinduvall says:

    I’m recommending Simply Irresistible. It’s a sweet and funny story. I was thrilled to find the e-published version as well, so I’ll slloooooowly be buying the rest of Rachel’s books for my (poor, overworked) Kindle!

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