BookTok: Is it worth the read?


Mary Nassar ’22 posing with “The Song of Achilles” and “The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue.” (Photo by: Irene Fernandez)

Irene Fernandez and Mary Nassar

When we saw BookTok videos all over our TikTok For You pages, we had to check out the long list of recommended books.

What even is BookTok? It’s a community of people on TikTok who post videos recommending and reviewing different books on the market. And being self-proclaimed professional readers, we took the liberty to review a couple of books ourselves.

Our Review

The first book, arguably the most popular one on BookTok, is “The Song of Achilles” by Madeline Miller. Is it worth the read? 100 times YES!

Even if Greek mythology is not your favorite, you will love this reimagined tale that is narrated by Patroclus, the close companion of Achilles. The story begins with Patroclus committing a serious crime and being exiled from his kingdom as a young prince. He then goes to live in another kingdom where Achilles is the prince. The two immediately become friends, and the story follows their friendship through their teenage years into young adulthood, when Achilles is asked to fight in the Trojan War. Patroclus goes with Achilles to fight, and through the struggles of pain and loss that war brings, he ends up making the ultimate sacrifice to save his friend.

Reading “The Song of Achilles” took me on an emotional rollercoaster, where I would laugh my head off and cry my eyes out all within the span of a few minutes. The writing is brilliant, poignant, and will tug at your heartstrings. It truly is one of my favorite books to this day because of its heart wrenching, honest portrayal of loyalty, friendship, loss, suffering, sacrifice, and love.

Other Rosary Royals have similar thoughts on this modern Greek retelling.

Senior Erika Kuehl shared her favorite part about the book: My favorite part about the book was seeing the relationship develop between Patroclus and Achilles. Achilles, known for his lack of mercy and compassion, has a true soft spot for Patroclus that redefines his actions during the Trojan war.” 

Along with sharing her favorite part about the book, Kuehl happily said, “I would recommend this book to anyone who loves romance and historical fiction. If you like to cry over a good book, this is definitely for you.”

“The Song of Achilles” is one of the most loved on BookTok and for good reason!

“The Song of Achilles” by Madeline Miller and “The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue.”
(Photo by: Irene Fernandez)

Mary’s Review

The second book, “The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue,” shattered my heart into a million pieces and plunged me into an existential spiral. I am still blown away by how heartwarming and thought provoking this book is.

The book follows the immortal life of Addie LaRue as she traces her steps back to the decision that changed the trajectory of her life forever by making her immortal and struggles to face the consequences of that decision, one of them being: nobody can remember who she is. Until one day when she is 300 years old, she finally meets someone who can remember her. And there begins a relationship that confirms to readers everywhere the existence of true love.

It’s a story of heartache, adventure, regret, forgiveness, and learning to fall in love with life and its many ordinary miracles. I’m beyond astonished at how this book shaped my views on the true meaning of living a full life and what true love actually looks like. If you are a hopeless romantic at heart and love historical fiction with a flare of romance, then this book is definitely for you!

Irene’s Review

The third book, a slightly less common gem, is “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky. Is it worth the read? Yes! But, be prepared for tears.

While more uncommon on BookTok, “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” is a short and amazing read.

The book is essentially the personal diary of Charlie, a teenage boy struggling with the death of his friend and primarily, his childhood trauma. An awkward but loveable teenager, Charlie navigates high school with the help of Patrick and Sam, two seniors. Charlie spent his life secluded as a wallflower, watching life from the outside. Although he meets people who brighten up his world, Charlie finds he cannot rely on others to fix his inner turmoil and must remember to care for himself in the process of caring for others.

“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” takes you on a whirlwind of emotions where you experience laughter, sadness, emptiness, hope, and secondhand embarrassment during the most awkward game of truth or dare.

“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” was adapted into a film. (Photo via Google under the Creative Commons License)

While reading, I found myself so involved in the life of this struggling, yet relatable character. I cry every time I read it. Now, you may be thinking I am just projecting myself onto the main character, which I totally am, but other students also agree on how impactful the book is. Liana Hanz, ‘22, shared: “After reading, I realized there are people in the world like Charlie and we need to make sure they know we are there for them.”

“The Perks of Being a Wallflower” is a classic coming of age story that will make you ask the deep questions about love and contemplate the meaning of life.

BookTok has impressed us with its amazing recommendations!