While heading to the beach to hit the water is one thing, there's nothing I love more than taking in the ocean breeze with a good book in hand. Even if you don't live near a beach, simply sitting on your yard or porch and enjoying the pleasant weather and immersing yourself in an imaginary world is just as pleasant. Escapism is always needed, right? To give you your wishlist on what to read this summer, I looked to BookTok, the book-loving community on TikTok that I can't seem to escape. It seems like every day I have a new selection of recommendations given to me by creators who have the exact same taste as me, and sometimes new ones that I never would've picked up at the store.
BookTok creators use clever groupings to lure you into reading their recommendations, like "Books you have to read in your 20s to books you should read if you love an enemy-to-lovers storyline." Either way, you're bound to enjoy a book from the variety the app offers. To make things easier for you so you don't have to scroll through dozens of videos like me, I rounded up the books the TikTok reading community can't get enough of. Pick one (or two) up to pack into your beach bag this summer.
In Greek mythology, Circe is an enchantress that was banished off to a deserted island by Zeus. Madeline Miller takes you through her sympathetic villain origin story. (Who doesn't love one of those?)
If you read and watched Normal People, then Sally Rooney's other story should be on your list. Rooney takes another take on friendships and relationships, as it follows two college students and the strange connection they make with a married couple.
My guilty pleasure for books has to be these lighthearted romances. Set as a typical enemy-to-lovers plotline, Lucy and Joshua compete heavily at their workplace only to start developing feelings for each other. Or is it just a game? You'll have to read and see.
I read this in 2021 and couldn't put it down. Emira Tucker is a babysitter who is confronted at the supermarket one night because the security guard, seeing a black woman with a white child, accuses her of kidnapping. Such a Fun Age explores the transactional relationships and the complicated reality of being a grown-up in this day and age.
17-year-old Ada loves her husband and is a respected midwife. After a year of marriage with no pregnancy, she decided to flee her life since barren women are not welcome in her town. She leaves her life behind to join a gang of outlaws and start a risky new path.
Poet and essayist Cathy Park Hong blends memoir, cultural criticism, and history to expose the truth of racialized consciousness in America.
The Vanishing Half follows the Vignes twins, who run away from their small southern black community at age 16 and live separate (and very different) lives.
When Addie Larue asks to live forever, she doesn't realize the consequences this comes with. While she gets immortality, no one ever remembers who she is after meeting her, until one day...
If you're one for shocking twists and turns, this is the one for you. The story follows the Sinclair family, who owns a private island where the family gets together annually. The story is set two summers after Candence Sinclair suffers an accident and can't remember what happens.
While most TikTokers claim the movie might have missed the mark, the book is a must-read. If you remember reading The Fault in Our Stars as a teenager, this love story follows a girl who learns how to live her life from a boy who intends to die.
I've seen fan edits of the Netflix series all over my TikTok feed, but of course, it started off with a book. Set in an imaginary nation of Ravka, which has been town in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. The fate of the nation may rest on the shoulders of one refugee. If you're into fantasy, this one sounds like a must-read.
What better book to read on vacation than a story about vacation? Two best friends, Alex and Poppy are polar opposites but always take one week of vacation together and have been for a decade, till a fall-out occurs. They go on one more vacation in an attempt to fix everything that went wrong. I'm already curious about what happened between the two.
Feminism is a widely discussed topic but misses a lot of the marks that should be included, like quality education, food insecurity, safe neighborhoods, and living wages. White feminists tend to leave out of their conversation how things like race, class, sexual orientation, and ability intersect with gender. In her book, Kendall asks how are we to stand together for one movement, if there are women oppressing others?
From the author of Daisy Jones & the Six, Evelyn Hugo is a famous actress who decides to give her final interview, where a journalist gets her to open up about her heartbreaking life story.
Normally when you think of meeting your life partner, you think your life should come together. After the main character, Grace meets her wife, who she drunkenly married on a trip to Las Vegas, it seems as if her life does the opposite, having her faced to figure everything out with her "life plan."
The main character Lilly develops feelings for Ryle, the kind of guy that wants nothing to do with relationships. However, right when things start to build up, a past love comes back to the surface.