Booktok Hits Social Media

Stefanny Hernandez

@abbysbooks , @aymansbook , @hellyeahbooks

TikTok is a popular app where individuals can interact with each other and share their lives and experiences. Since it is such a popular app with unique individual personalities, many different genres are created. Such as “gaytok” where queer people and allies talk about their lives and just have fun, “deeptok” where its just videos with overexposed filters made to look demonic in a way, and many more. Individuals are placed within a genre based on which videos they have previously liked, shared, and revisited. Everyone has their own “For You” page where TikToks are displayed within the genre they are placed in. One of these genres is “Booktok ”; generally about book recommendations and people expressing their thoughts on certain books.

There has been a recent spike in the popularity of this genre. As the number of views on videos increase, more people see these Tik Toks and are encouraged to read.  According to the demographics on Backlink, about 25% of viewers on Tik Tok are teens. These young adults are exposed to the literature and novels that “Booktok” presents to them. The massive amount of reviews saying “It’s so good!” creates a sense of curiosity within students, urging them to read. 

Studies show that reading more increases your vocabulary comprehension, reduces stress, and fights symptoms of depression. All these things can improve your experiences in school and general day to day life. Reading more often would provide teens with all of these benefits.

“I mostly like reading because it’s genuinely relaxing and it’s fun, also a good use of time,” says sophomore Ayrica Rodriguez.

Books like “The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” (Taylor Jenkins Reid), “Beach Read”(Emily Henry), and really any romance books in general became extremely popular because of Booktok. One author in particular, Colleen Hoover, has really gained popularity through booktok. She mainly writes young adult fiction and romance novels. Hoover’s most popular novels are “It Ends With Us” and “Ugly Love”. It was these books that led many people into the gateway of literature. 

“Booktok did influence me to read because I never really found books that were interesting until Booktok where I found a book called ‘It Ends With Us’ and the plot and concept of the book got me hooked on reading,” says freshman Luna Perez.

We are all different people with different likes and dislikes so a book that was the holy grail to one person may be a not-so-good book for another. An example of a book that was overhyped was “They Both Die at the End” by Adam Silvera. There are mixed reviews on this book because it spoils the ending in the title, leaving you with no incentive to read it because you know what happens. Some say it just kept going and going and felt there was no purpose behind the writing. This happens often with other books and it gets hard to find books you’ll enjoy when everyone on TikTok is talking about a book that wasn’t as good as they said.

A popular way for creators to get people to give more attention to a certain book is to describe the book as if it were a movie. Without giving any spoilers, they would describe the plot of the book and its turning points, then later reveal that it is a book. After hearing the description many just have to know how it ends, leading you to pick up the book. Also, recommending similar books saying “if you enjoyed reading this book, you’re sure to enjoy this” proved to have lasting effects. 

Just simple tactics like these are implemented by content creators to try and interest viewers and spark their curiosity. Not only is it useful to read, but with the right book reading can be relaxing and enjoyable. Diving into a good book in a genre that you’re interested in can grab your attention for hours.