The 20 Best Books of 2023, According to BookTok

Booktok's recs won't steer you wrong.

For decades, institutions like the New York Times determined which novels were worth reading. But in an age where going viral is considered a marker of success rather than a sign of a nasty infection, a new literary tastemaker has emerged: TikTok.

The short-form video app, known for dance challenges and lip-syncing videos, has become an unexpected hub for book recommendations and discussions. This corner of the internet is aptly dubbed BookTok and has quickly become a force to be reckoned with in the publishing world. Rather than literary experts handing down their verdicts, everyday readers are the ones catapulting books to the top of bestseller lists—some well before their official release date.

And major retailers are taking notice. Both Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million have entire sections on their websites dedicated to rounding up the most popular books on TikTok. According to Reader's Digest, videos posted with the #BookTok hashtag have upwards of 77 billion views.

"In all of my years as a bookseller, I have never seen a single social media platform move books the way TikTok continues to move books," Kalie Barnes-Young, inventory commercial support and senior bookseller at Barnes & Noble told Reader's Digest in 2023. "Titles that may have sold a few copies one month can suddenly balloon up the next month thanks to a successful algorithm."

The passionate fandom even has strong opinions when some of their favorite books are adapted to the big screen. Author Colleen Hoover had to address the masses after a major BookTok backlash following Blake Lively's casting in the upcoming adaptation of her hit novel It Ends With Us.

So, what are the titles reaping the benefits of all this organic promotion? Here are some of the most popular books on BookTok in 2023 (so far):

READ MORE: Colleen Hoover: How to Read the Best-Selling Author's Books in the Correct Order