Wedding books, from planning guides to romance novels
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A few months ago, I found myself swept up in the world of wedding planning. Naturally, my first stop was at the library, but there are so many wedding books out there! There are the great planners meant to keep all your checklists and contact details in order, or the archaic guides to patriarchal traditions, or the coffee table books with glossy photos of the most glamorous weddings you’ve ever seen. It was overwhelming and unnecessary. I don’t want you to go through the same thing as me.
Below, I’ve rounded up some great wedding planning books that go against the usual traditions, as well as romance novels about weddings, because they’re plentiful and a whole lot of fun. I could not resist.
Sadly, nearly every modern wedding planning book I could find was written by and for neighboring Christian white women. Although the books listed include stories and advice for a variety of weddings, there aren’t many that are specifically about weddings for different races or religions. I’m glad I found two dedicated to the beauty of queer weddings, so at least there’s that.
As for me, I flipped through a handful of wedding books and was overwhelmed with the details. We ended up getting married on our fifth anniversary at one of our favorite restaurants with only our immediate family in attendance, with two close friends officiating and photographing. It was perfect.
wedding planning books
Wedding tips: 500+ ways to stick to your budget, stay stress-free, and plan the best wedding ever! by Maddie Eisenhart
This is truly the best wedding planning book I have come across. It’s a list of over 500 tips, but each one only gets a paragraph or two of explanation. He breaks down budgets, traditions, and consequences, like how to change your name and not lose your rings on your honeymoon.
Equally Wed: The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your LGBTQ+ Wedding by Kirsten Ott Palladino
From the creator of the most comprehensive website for LGBTQ wedding planning, equalwed.com, this book covers it all. Kirsten Ott Palladino walks us through every aspect of the wedding day, from embracing fashionable trends to homophobic relationships with family members. Also sea is special in its total absence of heteronormative language. Because weddings are for everyone.
Quirky bride: create a wedding that looks like you by Ariel Meadow Stallings
The Offbeat Bride is perfect for anyone who doesn’t follow the patriarchal and heteronormative traditions around marriages. Ariel Meadow Stallings shares the story of her own non-traditional marriage and offers advice from others who have said no thanks to a garter throw.
One Perfect Day: The Sale of American Marriage by Rebecca Mead
Did you know that the wedding industry is worth approximately $160 billion in the United States?
In A perfect day, Rebecca Mead dives into the wedding industry and all its glitz and glory. With investigative journalism and social commentary, she interviews wedding planners, department store employees with wedding registries and, of course, wedding dress designers to understand why weddings are so lavish.
The Best Party of Our Lives: Stories of Gay Marriages and True Love to Inspire Us All by Sarah Galvin
This beautiful book is a collection of essays telling the stories of various LGBT couples and their marriages. Divided into sections according to the stages of a relationship – engagement, planning, ceremony, reception, happily ever after – Sarah Galvin tells the love story, challenges and lessons learned of each couple.
romance novels about marriages
The wedding party by Jasmine Guillory
Okay, almost every book in this series by Jasmine Guillory deals with or is adjacent to a wedding. But The wedding party is my preferred. Maddie and Theo are Alexa’s two best friends, and they hate each other. When they’re both tasked with nuptial duties, they end up spending some awkward time with each other…and then sneaking into closets to hook up. It’s a fun romance between enemies and lovers!
do you take this man by Denise Williams (September 2022, Berkley)
Divorce lawyer RJ celebrates an unplanned wedding in a park (what?) and a video of the ceremony goes viral, making her a sought-after celebrant. She obliges, but there’s a downside: the wedding planner she has to work with, Lear, is a real dude. They hate each other, and yet, despite their best efforts to stay off limits, they find themselves leaning towards each other.
Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q.Sutanto
Marriage Murder Mystery? Yes please.
Meddelin Chan accidentally killed his blind date. Her mother and several aunts try to help her dispose of the body, but of course it’s a bigger task than they imagine. It was in a cake cooler and shipped to the massive wedding Meddy and her family are working on… oops. Then Meddy’s big college sweetheart appears amidst the chaos, making her to-do list extraordinarily long: hide her body, stay out of jail, charm her ex-lover, and plan a fabulous wedding.
The worst best man by Mia Sosa
Carolina Santos is a top wedding planner in DC and lands a major client. The wrong side? She has to work with the brother of the groom who left her at the altar. She and Max both need this client to further their careers, so they bite the bullet and shoot daggers with their eyes instead. But then there are sparks between them. And we all know how it goes.
Delilah Green doesn’t care by Ashley Herring Blake
Angsty Delilah Green reluctantly travels to her hometown to photograph her stepsister’s wedding. She’s only here for the paycheck. But then she sees Claire Sutherland – one of her stepsister’s best friends – and has other plans. Claire is a single mother and runs her family’s bookstore, leaving little time for romance. The two are reunited for an endless series of pre-wedding activities and find each other irresistible. Delilah Green doesn’t care is a delightful queer romance about two women discovering who they really are.
For more bookish content on weddings, be sure to check out this history of superhero weddings, this list of wedding books, and this list of ten wedding-centric books.