9 Romance Novels to Read After 'Bridgerton'

Diverse reads to dive into after you finish the second season of the Netflix hit.

anthony and kate sharma in bridgerton

It's no surprise that the Netflix hit Bridgerton has paved the way for diverse representation in TV period dramas. Based on the series of novels by Julia Quinn, the show's creative team, led by media mogul Shonda Rhimes, changed the originally white cast of characters to include different races and ethnicities, with British-Zimbabwean actor Regé-Jean Page leading season 1 and British-Indian actress Simone Ashley starring in season 2.

Of course, romance novel fans have been reading novels with diverse characters since way before Bridgerton hit screens. Beloved authors have been writing these heroes and heroines for years, with both contemporary and historical plots that take readers on heart-racing journeys. Here's some historical romances with POC and LGBTQ+ characters that are must-reads for fans of Bridgerton.

Contributing Culture Editor

Quinci is a Contributing Culture Editor who writes pieces and helps to strategize editorial content across TV, movies, music, theater, and pop culture. She contributes interviews with talent, as well as SEO content, features, and trend stories. She fell in love with storytelling at a young age, and eventually discovered her love for cultural criticism and amplifying awareness for underrepresented storytellers across the arts. She previously served as a weekend editor for Harper’s Bazaar, where she covered breaking news and live events for the brand’s website, and helped run the brand’s social media platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Her freelance writing has also appeared in outlets including HuffPost, The A.V. Club, Elle, Vulture, Salon, Teen Vogue, and others. Quinci earned her degree in English and Psychology from The University of New Mexico. She was a 2021 Eugene O’Neill Critics Institute fellow, and she is a member of the Television Critics Association. She is currently based in her hometown of Los Angeles. When she isn't writing or checking Twitter way too often, you can find her studying Korean while watching the latest K-drama, recommending her favorite shows and films to family and friends, or giving a concert performance while sitting in L.A. traffic.