Popular reading list • The Tulane Hullabaloo

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Throughout the summer, TikTok seemed to thrive with viral videos endorsing different novels, leading to a social media trend known as “BookTok.” Below are some of the we talk about the most and praises books from the past few months so your back to school can include a new read from our book list.

“It Ends With Us” Colleen Hoover

This novel can be considered as the fire starter in the BookTok movement like sound popularity swept through social media. Characterized as an adult contemporary romance, this novel follows Lily and Ryle throughout their unexpected relationship. Hoover’s work explores sensitive topics such as domestic violence and takes readers through an emotional roller coaster. If you’re expecting this read to be a lighthearted romance novel about a love triangle, you’re sadly mistaken.

“People We Meet on Vacation” Emily Henry

This New York Times bestseller was published in early May 2021 and quickly became popular. Polar opposites turned best friends Alex and Poppy have been taking annual vacations together every summer for years. However, years after a conflict led to the two cutting off all communication, Poppy picks up Alex on a last vacation. Described as a “homage” to the 1989 film “When Harry Met Sally”, this romance novel will leave you in tears.

“My year of rest and relaxation” Ottessa Moshfegh

How unpleasant can the main character be? Ottessa Moshfegh’s second work focuses on an unnamed woman live lavishly on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in the early 2000s. She goes to great lengths with the help of her ethically corrupt therapist to increase her daily drug intake so she can try to sleep for an entire year – just because she wants it. Continuing her proclaimed journey of self-help and her struggle with relationships, this relentless novel explores ideas of alienation and loneliness.

“Normal People” Sally Rooney

Sally Rooney’s second published work follows Marianne and Connel as they navigate their relationship and their teenage years. This harrowing novel tackles issues of social class and self-esteem. The duo always seem to come back to each other, but are afraid of what their future might hold. Rooney is able to beautifully illustrate the heartbreak and joy that comes from love in a way that can speak to any reader.

“The Year of Magical Thinking” Joan Didion

Immediately distinguished as a classic memoir on grief and loss, Jeanne Didion describes her struggle to deal with the loss and mourn her late husband, writer John Gregory Dunne. The work is honest and breathtakingly emotional as she displays her innermost thoughts on paper. This memoir was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and is a must read for anyone dealing with loss.

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