The Ballad Hits is the second greatest hitscompilation album by Swedish pop duo Roxette, released on 4 November 2002 by Roxette Recordings and Capitol Records. It was the first of a two-part series of "best of" albums released by the duo in quick succession, and was followed by The Pop Hits in March 2003. Two new songs were recorded specially for The Ballad Hits: lead single "A Thing About You" and "Breathe". The album was a commercial success upon release, and has been certified gold or platinum in a number of territories.
The album contains two newly recorded songs: "Breathe" and "A Thing About You", which was issued as the album's lead single on 14 October 2002. CD versions of the album released on mainland Europe, as well as Brazil and Russia, feature copy protection. A limited edition of the compilation containing a bonus EP of previously unreleased tracks was also released in select territories. The EP contained "The Weight of the World", "It Hurts" and "Every Day", along with a fourth song, "See Me", which had previously been released as a b-side on the duo's 1999 single "Salvation". Its release in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States was timed to coincide with Valentine's Day of 2003. The album was due to be promoted by Roxette performing with an orchestra at the pan-European concert series Night of the Proms. However, Roxette had to be pull out of the event when singer Marie Fredriksson was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
The compilation received generally positive reviews. William Ruhlmann of AllMusic described Roxette as a "much bigger act in Europe than in America. Indeed, as far as the United States is concerned, there are only five chart entries [on the album], and only three real hits. ... Americans may have lost interest at about the time that Nirvana came roaring in from the Northwest, but Roxette has been consistent, scoring hits throughout the 90's and beyond with their usual practice of attractive pop hooks and Marie Fredriksson's emotive vocals." He summarised by writing that the album contained "plenty of ear candy" and rated it 3 stars out of 5. A writer for Uncut gave a positive review as well, saying that the album contained "not ballads in the conventional folksy sense, but rather, at their best, pomp-rock steamrollers crushing the puny likes of Jennifer Rush with the mighty weight of their sentimentality." They also rated the album 3 stars out of five, and called it "A must for drama queens and pop aficionados alike."
The album was successful throughout Europe, particularly in Scandinavia. It peaked within the top five in both Denmark and the duo's native Sweden, and was certified gold in both territories for shipments in excess of 25,000 and 30,000 units, respectively. It reached number eight on the Norwegian Albums Chart, and was certified platinum by the IFPI there for sales in excess of 40,000 copies. It also reached the top ten in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and Switzerland, and was certified gold in both of the latter territories for shipments in excess of 40,000 and 20,000 units, respectively.
The Ballad Hits was promoted in the United Kingdom with a high-profile marketing campaign, which included airing commercials for the album during the popular British soap operaCoronation Street over the week leading up to Valentine's Day. The album debuted at number 23 on the UK Albums Chart on the chart dated 9 February 2003, before rising to its peak of number 11 on its second week.
 It peaked even higher on the Scottish Albums Chart, reaching number seven there. It was certified silver by the British Phonographic Industry for shipments in excess of 60,000 units.
Recorded in various studios in Sweden, Italy and Spain between November 1987 and June 2002.
All songs produced by Clarence Öfwerman, except tracks 1 and 15 by Öfwerman and Per Gessle, tracks 11, 12 and 13 by Fredriksson, Gessle, Michael Ilbert and Öfwerman, and track 14 by Fredriksson, Gessle and Öfwerman.