School's out for summer! I was a nerd and school and libraries were my happy places. Intellectualism, books and words were my religion. So it's no surprise that I'm a sucker for romances set in academia. The age gap and power difference tropes can be difficult to handle well but some romances manage to walk that fine line while bringing all of the absurd humor and steamy romance.
Passionflix ("we find the most passionate content to satisfy our viewers") is like the Hallmark Channel for those who like their romance spicy and steamy. They adapt best-selling romance novels into original content and since the company is run by a woman and the films are mostly written and directed by women, movies that emphasize the female gaze are their specialty.
This trailer for Gabriel's Inferno is like a mini-telenovela, in all the best ways. Have an icy drink nearby.
There's more than a touch of Jane Austen's Emma, that novel of "young hubris and romantic misunderstandings" in the plot of Maggie's Plan. I love its brutally real modern exploration of the intersection--or not--of mothering, romance, commitment and career, all from a female perspective.
The name of Ethan Hawke's TED talk is "Give Yourself Permission to Be Creative." I absolutely love that he's sitting in a bar with string lights all around giving this "talk" which is more like a conversation. He's just too down to earth to wear that headset on a stage. This is the best nine minutes you'll ever spend.
I've only read the first Gabriel's Inferno book and while it isn't the best written romance I've ever read, it's definitely one of the most sexy and unforgettable, full of the juiciest, slightly naughty romantic tropes. Gabriel is an irresistible Stern Brunch Daddy.
When a student accidentally leaves a story in an essay assignment, detailing her most private and erotic fantasies, it could have meant total humiliation. Instead, The Professor is impressed with her talent and presents her with a choice that includes private tuition at his home. Whewwwww. Charlotte Stein writes steamy romances in a witty, elegant literary style that's pure catnip to me.
If you can't get enough of romance set in academia, Goodreads has assembled a good list. Some of the books feature large age gap tropes, so definitely check the descriptions if that isn't your thing. The Kiss Quotient and Only When It's Us aren't hot for teacher stories, but they feature a university setting and they're fabulous.
Charlotte Brontë even wrote her own version of academic love.