If you are looking to treat yourself, or a significant other, to a "real" love story for Valentines' Day,
I suggest you retreat to the 18th century.
"My Dearest Friend" is a compilation of lifetime correspondence between Abigail and John Adams, starting with their courtship and continuing through their 54 years of marriage.
The letter below is one of my favorites, written to Abigail when she was just 17 .
By the same Token that the Bearer hereof satt up with you last night I hereby order you to give him, as many Kisses, and as many Hours of your Company after 9O'Clock as he shall please to Demand and charge them to my Account: This Order, or Requisition call it which you will is in Consideration of a similar order Upon Aurelia for the like favour, and I presume I have good Right to draw upon you for the Kisses as I have given two or three Millions at least, when one has been received, and of Consequence the account between us is immensely in favour of yours,
Octr. 4th. 1762
Now if this had been in my history books, I might have paid more attention in class. As it is, I find myself playing catch-up to this time period and the amazing lives of these extraordinary people.
Another good read (gift) is David McCullough's tome, "John Adams".
The book was turned into a spectacular miniseries for HBO several years ago. The DVD would make an excellent gift for gentlemen or gentlewomen.
The lavish sets, locations, and costumes are worth a look, alone.
The show won 4 Golden Globes, and more Emmy awards than any other televised miniseries to date. This is completely understandable given the exceptional performances of Paul Giamatti, Laura Linney, and the supporting cast.
Right now, all the buzz is about Downton Abbey. If you like Downton, you'll love the real thing.