TikTok — specifically BookTok — has changed the way we read and the way people talk about books. At this point, that’s pretty clear. BookTok is driving publishing trends and even pulling backlist titles back on the bestsellers charts. BookTok covers a wide range of book genres, including romance and fantasy. But when it comes to books that people love on TikTok, young adult literature is king. That’s why we rounded up this big list of the most popular YA books on TikTok.
The great thing about young adult literature is that it includes a wide range of genres and topics. And the reason people on BookTok loves these books are as varied as the stories themselves. Some of these books are big tear-jerkers. Some promise shocking twists that have everyone on the platform talking. For some BookTok accounts, it’s all about the character development. For others, it’s all about the romance.
What’s also really interesting about the YA books BookTok loves is that they’re surprising. Some of them are newer titles, but the majority of young adult books getting buzz on BookTok are older titles finding a second life and a new audience. And a lot of those older titles have remained a mainstay since the dawn of BookTok.
So what YA books will be popular on TikTok? It’s hard to predict. But one thing all of the most popular YA books on TikTok have in common: they get people talking.
The Most Popular YA Books on TikTok
The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Jennifer Lynn Barnes’s The Inheritance Games has been all over BookTok since its release in 2020. Avery Grambs is a high school student whose life changes forever when she mysteriously receives an inheritance from Tobias Hawthorne, a puzzle-loving billionaire she’s never met. But in order to win her inheritance, she’ll have to move into the secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where danger waits around every turn. Books like this do well on TikTok because people have opinions about the series and its characters. And with the third novel in the series publishing later this year, The Inheritance Games will likely remain the talk of BookTok for quite a while.
They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
This book was originally released in 2017, but Adam Silvera’s They Both Die at the End jumped back on the New York Times bestsellers list following all the buzz it got on TikTok. This book imagines a future where Death-Cast can tell people the exact time they are going to die. When Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio both get the call on September 5 a little after midnight, their final day together will change everything. Creators all over BookTok are going wild for how emotional this book is, even recording themselves crying. And yes, even though the title gives away the ending of the story, that hasn’t meant BookTokers have been any less devastated by the final pages.
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
Everyone might know how They Both Die at the End ends, but with We Were Liars, BookTok dares you to guess the unpredictable ending. Even when people think they know what to expect from this book, they’re still surprised. This 2014 young adult thriller follows the story of the Sinclairs, a wealthy and seemingly perfect family who spend their summers on their private island. However, not everything is as perfect as it seems, and the private island is home to many secrets. This book is another older title that has found new life thanks to BookTok, and now E. Lockhart has written a prequel, Family of Liars.
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Of course, BookTok is a visual medium, and so some of the books that are hyped on the platform get a lot of attention for their aesthetic appeal. Stephanie Perkins’s 2010 novel Anna and the French Kiss is one of those books. But that’s not the only reason BookTokers love it. Readers adore the love story between Atlanta high schooler Anna and Étienne St. Clair, the smart and charming boy Anna meets when she’s shipped off to boarding school in Paris. While it’s not all smooth sailing when it comes to romance in the city of lights, people all over BookTok are swooning over this unforgettable love story.
The Sun is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon
Books like Nicola Yoon’s The Sun is Also A Star are endlessly quotable, which is part of the reason it’s gaining a lot of buzz on TikTok. When you only have a short amount of time to grab someone’s attention, a short but thought-provoking quote is great content. But this is also one that gets attention for the aesthetics, for the love story, and because it makes readers cry. Really, this love story about two teens falling in love with each other over the course of one day? It has everything that makes BookTok sing!
Crave by Tracy Wolff
Let’s talk about the Crave series and all the reasons that it’s perfect for BookTok. First, we have to acknowledge the aesthetics. Then, there’s the fact that it’s basically Twilight for a new generation, but with a dark academia twist. There’s the romance. The characters people love and love to hate. This is another YA book that has all the elements TikTok loves. After the death of her parents, Grace moves to a small town to live with her uncle and attend a boarding school there. Only this school isn’t exactly a normal school. And then there’s the mysterious Jaxon Vega, who just so happens to be a vampire.
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
The Caraval series is so beloved on BookTok that people are dancing about it. Scarlett and her sister Tella live with their father on a tiny island that they’ve never left. Scarlett dreams of one day seeing Caraval — a magical performance where the audience participates in the show that happens only once a year. And then one year, Tella is kidnapped to become the center of the season’s Caraval, and whoever finds her first is the winner. Scarlett always thought that Caraval was all pretend, but now with her sister missing, Scarlett knows she must find Tella before the game is over. Or else who knows what the very real consequences would be?
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Remember how we established that BookTok loves a good quotable moment? Well, Leigh Bardugo’s novels are full of them. And while all of Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone–adjacent novels are quite popular on BookTok, it’s Six of Crows that gets the most attention. On top of quippy dialogue, this book is an intriguing story featuring a full cast of compelling characters, plenty of fantasy elements, and, oh yeah, a heist. It’s unsurprising then that BookTok is so head over heels for this book.
The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han
Yes, Jenny Han’s To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is a huge hit on BookTok, but not quite as huge as the author’s 2009 novel The Summer I Turned Pretty (and its sequels). Belly has been close to brothers Jeremiah and Conrad for years, ever since their first summer at the beach house. But then one summer, everything changes. Even if you think you’re sooo over the love triangle trope, BookTokers argue there’s something special about this one. And they love chatting about whether they’re Team Jeremiah or Conrad.
Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
BookTokers are absolutely speechless over Legendborn by Tracy Deonn. BookTok loves a good dark academia novel, but they’re also wild about retellings, and Legendborn delivers both. This book, based on Arthurian legend, tells the story of Bree Matthews, a teen who joins a residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill and stumbles upon something extraordinary. When a flying demon attacks the campus, a secret society of “Legendborn” students hunts the creature down. Because Bree wasn’t meant to see any of this, a mage called “Merlin” attempts to wipe Bree’s memory. But in doing so, he instead unlocks dormant powers within her.
Of course, BookTok is always a great go-to place for book recommendations. But if you’re looking for something a little more tailored to your particular tastes, you can’t go wrong with Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a book recommendation service that pairs you with an expert Bibliologist who will pick out books specifically for you. So if you’re looking for more young adult books that BookTok might have missed — or any genre for that matter — TBR has got you covered.