11 books trending on BookTube that are worth the hype

11 books trending on BookTube that are worth the hype

In Reading Lists by Emma Contreras

11 books trending on BookTube that are worth the hype

Every so often, I get the urge to delete all of my social media apps. But one of the things that keeps me coming back are the little pockets of supportive community that have been carved out for just about any hobby you can imagine.

A personal favorite where I love to lurk? BookTube.

If you’re new to this corner of the Internet and wondering, “What’s a BookTube channel?,” there isn’t a definitive answer, but I would say that any channel focused on book-related content (reviews, hauls, listicles, author Q&As, etc.) qualifies.

BookTube is the predecessor to Bookstagram and BookTok; for all the hype that BookTok now receives, a 2022 survey from Nielsen BookData shows that more people still search for book recommendations on Youtube than on TikTok or Instagram.

There’s a lot of crossover when it comes to books trending on the aforementioned platforms. A popular type of video that I find particularly helpful when looking for my next read is when BookTubers review viral books on BookTok to determine if they’re worth the hype. Throttled is one such sensation that made the cut according to BookTuber Bethany Noel. In this list, you’ll find more books that are worth a read, according to BookTubers.

1. Alone With You in the Ether by Olivie Blake

The lives of Regan, a bipolar counterfeit criminal, and Aldo, an obsessive-compulsive math whiz, collide by chance, and what results is a brilliant, raw love story that hopeless romantics and heartbroken readers everywhere will empathize with. 

Popular BookTuber Jack Edwards praised Blake’s work of contemporary romance as “Impossible to put down,” and in particular loved the “flawed main characters you can’t help but root for.” 

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2. Expiration Dates by Rebecca Serle

Daphne Bell knows exactly how long her relationships will last. When she meets a new man, she receives a postcard listing the number of days they’ll be together — and these cards are never wrong. 

So when Daphne meets Jake and receives a blank card, the truth seems obvious: He’s the one. Isn’t he? 

Serle, who brought us viral bestsellers like In Five Years and One Italian Summer, delivers yet another moving story that pits fate against free will. 

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3. Bloom by Delilah S. Dawson

At first glance, this seems like a dreamy cottagecore love story that promises flowers and sunshine. But lurking just beneath the surface lies a dark whirlwind of obsessive infatuation. BookTuber Riley Marie says, “The ending of this book is cemented in my brain. … This is just hands down the best book that I read in 2023.” 

With that enticing commendation, dive into this queer horror romance between Ro, a professor struggling with a recent heartbreak, and Ash, a stunning gardening extraordinaire who seems too good to be true. 

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4. Wildfire by Hannah Grace

Wildfire is a standalone romance that takes place in the same universe as viral BookTok favorite Icebreaker and stars Russ, a familiar hero who was first introduced in Stassie and Nate’s love story. 

Following a passionate encounter, Aurora and Russ are shocked to realize they’ll be spending the summer together as camp counselors. But before they can open up to one another, they’ll both have to overcome personal insecurities and family drama. 

BookTubers praise Grace for penning another sports romance that blends sweet and steamy, with a fun setting to boot.

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5. Yellowface by R.F. Kuang

Kuang’s heart-pounding thriller is a sharp satire that skewers white entitlement and cultural appropriation in the publishing industry and beyond. June, a white writer, steals a manuscript from her recently deceased Chinese American rival, then publishes it under a racially ambiguous persona. 

Not one, not two, but three popular book clubs (Reese Witherspoon, Roxane Gay, and Marie Claire) chose Yellowface as one of their summer reads last year. Plus, anyone at Everand who’s read it has sung its praises. You’ll also find it featured on countless BookTubers’ videos that review BookTok sensations and determine if they’re worth the hype (spoiler: this one for sure is).

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6. Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros

It’s no surprise that Yarros’ sequel to Fourth Wing became a sensation on BookTube and beyond. It is astonishing, however, that Violet Sorrengail survived her first year at Basgiath War College. But the challenges and dangers are only beginning as Violet continues her dragon rider training. 

Stakes and brutalities soar higher than ever in Iron Flame, and Violet must summon every ounce of her courage, determination, and intelligence if she’s going to defy all odds once again.

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7. Honey and Spice by Bolu Babalola

Babalola’s debut novel is a contemporary rom-com, with all its inherent humor, but it also delves seriously into the topics of identity, belonging, and, ultimately, Black joy. The protagonists — Kiki Banjo, a British Nigerian student at Whitewell College, and Malakai Korede, a smug recent transfer — are distinctly written, and the fake relationship trope plays out beautifully here.

Published in 2022, Honey and Spice continues to make a splash on social media, with BookTuber Thisstoryaintover saying she could “kick myself for not reading this one earlier” and praising the rom-com for its “easy, fun banter” and “amazing spicy scenes.” 

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8. Throttled by Lauren Asher

This “five-star read that is absolutely worth the hype” sent BookTuber Bethany Noel down an Internet rabbit hole to find out what Formula 1 race car driving is all about. 

Asher’s sports romance series starter promises forbidden love and explosive chemistry between Maya and her brother’s long-time rival, Noah, amidst a racy backdrop of fast cars and steamy scenes.

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9. Divine Rivals by Rebecca Ross

A Clockwork Reader declares Divine Rivals to be her favorite Ross novel and says it’s “definitely a book that deserves the attention and hype … this was actually so good.” 

Amid a war between gods, Iris, an 18-year-old writer, pens cathartic letters to her missing brother. They mysteriously (perhaps magically) wind up in the hands of Iris’ rival at the Oath Gazette, leading to surprising consequences. 

Ross’ steampunk fantasy duology-starter leans heavily into relatable human experiences and makes use of subtle magic that greatly enhances the plot. 

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10. Shark Heart by Emily Habeck

In the mood to get wrecked, emotionally speaking? BookTuber GabbyReads has just the read for you. 

Wren's husband, Lewis, has been diagnosed with a rare disease that will mutate him into a great white shark (stay with me here). Mentally, he’ll still be Lewis. Physically? He’s all shark. 

In a heart-wrenching work of magical realism that fuses poetry with gorgeous, fablelike storytelling, Habeck delivers a unique and imaginative debut that will take you on a rollercoaster ride through the full spectrum of human and shark emotion. 

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11. You’ve Reached Sam by Dustin Thao

When you find something that’s repeatedly featured on BookTube lists like “Books that made me cry” and “Books that left me sobbing and staring at the wall for hours,” you know you’re onto something special. 

Sam dies suddenly, but when his grieving girlfriend Julie calls him just to hear his voicemail, she’s shocked, confused, and delighted to find she’s actually speaking with him. Smartphones prove how powerful and magical they really are at helping us stay connected in this sentimental story about moving on. 

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About the Author: Emma Contreras

Emma is an Everand booklist curator and a freelance content marketing writer covering finance, business leadership, and B2B SaaS communications.