This post is written by R. Nassor.
Dragons. Magic. Romance. The most popular romantasy books on TikTok truly have everything a reader could want. After all, it’s undeniable — romantasy has recently taken BookTok by storm.
Romantasy is a subgenre that combines the romance and fantasy genres. By now, other Book Rioters have discussed the budding Romantasy genre and offered their own recommendations. As a lover of fantasy, romance, and any combination of the two, I am fully prepared for the recent rise in popularity of the books. In the past, some romantasy books contained too much romance for the fantasy section and too much fantasy for the romance section. However, because the most popular romantasy books on TikTok sold so well, traditional publishing took notice. Now these books are coming out in droves, and BookTok is paying attention.
I cannot understate the impact of romantasy book sales on publishing decisions. Traditional publishing is picking up independent romantasy authors because they see how popular the genre is. Orbit recently acquired Kimberly Lemming, Harper Voyager acquired A. K. Mulford, and Bramble (TOR’s new science fiction and fantasy romance imprint) acquired Rebecca Thorne. I’m happy these excellent authors are getting the book deals and support they deserve for their romantasy novels.
Popular Romantasy Books on TikTok
The following books are just some of the most popular romantasy books on TikTok. My algorithm naturally impacts the videos I see most often; however, I also searched the romantasy hashtag for additional input. I can guarantee that these dragons, demons, vampires, magic users, and other fantastical beings are swoony enough to make even a long-time romance reader blush.
High Fantasy-Style Popular Romantasy Books on TikTok
Trial of the Sun Queen by Nisha J. Tuli
For twelve years, Lor and her siblings survived the worst of Aurora’s prisons. That is, until a mysterious winged man flew her to the castle of the Sun King. Suddenly, she has to learn everything from combat to history to win a contest and become the Sun Queen. Lor doesn’t know why she, of all people, was chosen, but with her and her siblings’ lives on the line, she will learn quickly and try not to fall for the King who promises her freedom. Who doesn’t want a bachelorette-esque romantasy with ever-expanding stakes?
Content warnings: sexual harassment, sexual assault, death of parents, imprisonment, misogyny
A River of Golden Bones by A.K. Mulford
Twin orphan wolf shifters Calla and Briar’s tenuous claim to royalty will be lost if Briar fails to marry the man Calla loves. Even though Briar prefers women, she is willing to marry Prince Grae for a chance to lead her people. Although Calla wants to protect her sister and lead their armies, she can’t help but love her childhood best friend, Grae. But at her twin’s wedding, expected matches change, and the evil sorceress who killed their parents comes to steal Briar and place her under a sleeping curse. Calla will get her sister back, even if she/they must run away from the person she belongs within this “Sleeping Beauty” retelling reimagined as a queer shifter romance.
Content warnings: death of a parent, transphobia
That Time I Got Drunk and Saved a Demon by Kimberly Lemming
Cinnamon, the spice farmer, embarks on a journey to defeat an evil witch at the request of the demon she drunkenly saved. Fallon quickly falls in love with the woman who broke the evil witch’s spell and returns his autonomy. Naturally, he wants to woo Cinnamon and free other demons from the witch’s thrall. He manages both in the course of their adventure. Cinnamon is a “hero who denies the call” to her core and is more than a little wary of falling for a demon dragon shifter, but even her strong will cannot deny the appeal of her new traveling companion.
Content warning: enslavement
King of Battle and Blood by Scarlett St. Clair
In a world long at war with vampires, there is nothing more horrifying than becoming affianced to Adrian Aleksandr Vasiliev, the vampire king. As a princess, Isolde de Lara knew her hand was not hers to decide. So, when the vampire king offers to spare everyone in exchange for her hand, she says yes. Just one problem — Isolde is wildly attracted to her new husband. It doesn’t help that the more she learns about him, the less he meets her expectations. Isolde will have to make the difficult choice to either trust her gut or stab his in the first novel in a vampire romantasy series.
Content Warning: death of a parent
A Strange and Stubborn Endurance by Foz Meadows
When an envoy from the neighboring country discovers Velasin’s preference for men, they quickly change the marriage contract to swap the family’s daughter for the son. Coming from a homophobic country, Vel is still coming to terms with being able to marry a man for a political marriage. To complicate matters further, someone doesn’t want Vel and his new husband Cae’s alliance to succeed. Even the politically astute Vel finds trouble navigating unknown deadly threats, but Cae’s kindness and strength might just be what he needs to save them both.
Content warnings: sexual assault, homophobia, suicidal ideation, self-harm
A Broken Blade by Melissa Blair
Keera knows how to be the King’s Blade. When someone threatens the Crown, she is tasked with finding and killing those threats. But, when she must journey into the Faeland to find her next target, she uncovers hard truths about the king she serves and reevaluates her role as his Blade. Keera will have to learn who to trust fast if she wants to finally do what’s right, even if it is alongside a person she thought was her enemy.
Content warnings: suicidal ideation, self-harm
Fall of Ruin and Wrath by Jennifer L. Armentrout
This fated mates romantasy follows Calistia, an orphan seer, who uses her abilities to ensure she and her best friend Grady remain safe. Recently, that means acting as the Baron of Archwood, Claude’s lover, to read the thoughts of those around him. Her life is upturned when she overhears people are torturing a Hyhborn, and she must help him. Prince Thorne is grateful, and now Calistia can’t help longing for him. One thing is for sure: her life gets even more complicated now that the new Hyhborn prince in her life will do anything to keep her safe and at his side.
Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros
This is a dragon-centered new adult romantasy that everyone’s been buzzing about. Violet Sorrengail is a 20-year-old book-loving woman with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome whose mother orders her to become a candidate dragon rider at Basgiath War College. She wouldn’t have chosen this path herself, but if she fails to bond with a dragon, death awaits her. Now, Violet will have to use every tool, ally, and skill she possesses if she wants to survive.
Content warnings: ableism, animal death, death of a loved one
Popular Historical Romantasy Books on TikTok
A Marvellous Light by Freya Marske
A queer magical mystery set in Edwardian England, the first book in The Last Binding trilogy introduces readers to Edwin Courcey, a surly magical bureaucrat, and his new cheery non-magical coworker, baronet Robin Blyth. As a titled man in need of a job to support his and his sister’s lives after their parents passing, Robin was not expecting to fall in the middle of a deadly magical secret. Now, he must rely on the expertise and kindness of Edwin if he wants to get himself out of this mess and live to see another day. This is the perfect romantasy series for anyone who has ever found themselves in a bind.
Content warning: homophobia
Even Though I Knew the End by C. L. Polk
1940s Chicago has a divine monster problem and Helen Brandt is tasked with tracking the worst of them down if she wants to reclaim her soul and spend the rest of her life with the woman she loves. The last case she needs to solve is finding the White City Vampire, a serial killer whose crimes plague the city. In this noir romantasy novella, one woman will put her life on the line to save her soul and, more importantly, the woman who holds her heart.
Content warnings: homophobia, misogyny
Popular Romantasy Books on TikTok with Ships on Ships
Hunt on Dark Waters by Katee Robert
Evelyn’s ex-vampire girlfriend is out for blood — and this time, it’s hers, unfortunately. Her skills as an accomplished witch and thief fail her when she steals from her ex and escapes through a dimensional portal. Evelyn knows her ex is after her, but now she also has to pledge her life service to the pirate ship she winds up on when she falls through the portal. Plus, there’s Bowen, the attractive telekinetic captain who’s in charge and is far too noble and appealing for his own good. Now, she has to avoid falling for her captor, find a way back home, and escape her deadly ex’s pursuit.
A Song of Silver and Gold by Melissa Karibian
Sapphics at sea engaged in an enemies-to-lovers journey take center stage in this “Little Mermaid”-inspired romantasy. The notorious Captain Kae is secretly Princess Kaelyn of Avalon, hunting sirens on the sea to avenge her dead brother. When Kae kills a siren princess, the deadly siren warrior of Meyrial, Aqeara is banished as punishment for not protecting royalty. Now, Aqeara will do anything to regain what she lost, even if it means making a deal with a sea witch, becoming human temporarily, and stealing Kae’s heart. Aqeara makes it aboard Kae’s ship, but her sudden attraction to the captain might be the most dangerous challenge she’s ever faced.