15 BookTok creators recommend great sci-fi books to read

Trying to figure out what to read next can be overwhelming, especially with the number of excellent science fiction and fantasy books that come out every year. But dozens of BookTokers — TikTokers who focus on books, from sharing favorites to critiquing classics — are here to help.

We’ve made a list of some of our favorite BookTokers who either focus on SFF, or have broad taste that includes a lot of speculative books. Fear not; this list expands beyond the much hyped books like Olivie Blake’s The Atlas Six or Sarah J. Maas’s numerous fantasy titles. This isn’t an exhaustive list either — the wide world of BookTok is full of creators who do excellent work. We’ll add to this list as we find new favorites.

@fayestephensonn

To kick things off, Faye has SFF recommendations galore — especially books with queer representation — along with lots of lighthearted comedy about genre tropes and the inevitable haze of coming out from reading a long fic. Come for the books, and stay for the incredibly rad rotation of hair colors and styles (but also for the books, obviously).

@camilletealatte

Camille Kelly’s TikToks range from recommendations — like this list of books with a “fanfiction-y feel” — to jokes about their own bookish habits or bits about classic literature and fantasy. Science fiction and fantasy books are peppered throughout these videos. They’re great to follow not just to broaden reading recommendations, but to add more humor to your feed.

@book_reviews_kill

Evan’s focus is on SFF, though his taste leans fantasy. His TikToks his range from thoughtful analysis of individual titles, like VE Schwab’s The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue and Adrian Tchaikovsky’s Elder Race, to best books of the year, all-time favorites, and book hauls. His videos his can tend toward the longer side, since they ‘re analysis-heavy — but they ‘re very accessible, and a great choice for those just starting to get into SFF or seasoned readers who are looking to dig deeper.

@aresreads

Ares recommends tons of SFF like hefty fantasy series, graphic novels and comics (like Saga and Monstress), as well as manga. Ares also shares resources to help readers diversify the authors featured on their shelves. (And when I see someone who loves Ken Liu’s Dandelion Dynasty, I have to feature them.)

@thoughtsontomes_

If you love SFF tropes and are looking to add to that to-read stack, you’ve come to right place. Sam makes lots of specific recommendations based on tropes and themes like female rage, hero to villain, or dark academia — along with sharing queer readings of SFF.

@chaptersofchi

Adannia’s taste is broad and fairly omnivorous, including literary fiction like Yaa Gyasi’s Transcendent Kingdom as well as romance and YA. Of course, she also features tons of science fiction and fantasy, with a focus on an inclusive range of reads — featuring lots of SFF heavy hitters like Octavia E. Butler and Nnedi Okorafor. Adannia’s TikToks also touch on subjects like anti-Blackness in BookTok (and in publishing and criticism more broadly).

@books.with.lee

Lee’s taste is also very broad, but with a focus on international authors — especially with her current 2022 focus, the “Reading Across Africa” challenge. (In her Storygraph, you can find books she’s read, organized by the country the book is set in or the country the author is writing from.) Throughout the year, she’s also shared her favorite speculative books written by African authors, along with books published in America that were inspired by African mythology. She also originated a trend where BookTokers share images of their favorite books in the thumbnail — browsing these is a great way to quickly find other creators to follow.

@melissas.bookshelf

Melissa Blair, who is also the author of A Broken Bladerecommends a broad range of books, including science fiction and fantasy, often highlighting indigenous authors (like Karen McBride, who wrote Crow Winter, a speculative literary fiction work). I’d recommend watching her tour of her local bookstore her, where she points out great books from indigenous authors in Canada and the United States.

@libraryofclaire

If you were looking for queer recommendations, you’ve come to the right place. Claire champions books from across genres — with a frequent focus on science fiction — but they do an excellent job of highlighting queer SFF as well as sapphic books of all types. (Hello, Gideon the Ninth.) They also have an excellent list of books to read if you like D&D.

@johannawithbooks

If you’re looking to add more Latinx authors to your shelf, you can’t go wrong with Johanna’s recommendations. This book haul alone has a ton of excellent books to dig into (Fans of Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s Gods of Jade and Shadow rise up!!!).

@limmadi8

Madi Lim recommends books across a variety of genres, but science fiction and fantasy are in regular rotation. She also makes “BookTok News” TikToks dedicated to news — and BookTok tea — from movie adaptation announcements to conventions gone wrong. Some of her recommendations her include Sue Lynn Tan’s Daughter of the Moon Goddess and Aiden Thomas’ Cemetery Boys.

@asthebookends

If you’re in the mood for lots of SFF lists to dig through, especially centered on granular themes — like urban fantasy or fallen heroes — or simply books with a certain level of “spice” (BookTok speak for how explicit or hot a book is), Erin Fehres’ account is for you. Peppered with lists and individual recommendations, there’s lots to choose from.

@amivireads

Amivi runs a bookclub called “Sapphic and Proud” with queer favorites across genres, including science fiction and fantasy. They share tons of sapphic must-reads and fantasy recommendations from Black writers, with favorites that include Ayana Gray’s Beasts of Prey and NE Davenport’s The Blood Trials.

@bookwormbullet

Ayushi champions a number of books that haven’t taken off on BookTok, but still deserve the love and attention of readers. She also highlights YA fantasies written by women of color, and reps lots of Desi authors — both SFF and outside the genre. (If you’re also a romance reader, Ayushi has got you covered.)

@sayde_reads

Last but definitely not least, Sayde’s taste also runs the gamut, and SFF books are in regular rotation (often while Sayde wears these cool elven ears). Featured titles range from beloved books for the mythology kids, like Circe and Ariadne, to “existential horror manga” that would spook even the most stalwart readers. Sayde also has excellent recommendations for readers who have enjoyed a lot of popular BookTok titles and want to jump to adult fantasy books that are similar.

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