2023 book trends; “Singles Inferno” S2, boygenius EP drop, Oklahoma taking over Twitter, Bojangles hard sweet tea, and hopecore 😊 


Young people’s book tastes tend to follow a yearly trend — 2020 was the era of renewing our love of fantasy, 2021 the nearly-smut easy reading, 2022 white women versus the void. A month into 2023, it seems we’re trending toward classics that reflect on the human experience. The #23in23 challenge, where readers choose 23 books they’re committing to reading in 2023, is overflowing with this genre. From “The Idiot” to “Go Tell it on the Mountain” to “Norwegian Wood,” Gen Z is taking nostalgia and corecore to a literary level. Beyond this genre, young people have grown to appreciate the enjoyment of reading at our 2014-fantasy-era levels. The account @coolgirlsreadingbooks highlights “cool girls” and their book choices. The Celebrity Memoir Book Club podcast has 311.2 thousand followers due to their biting humor on nepo babies, celebrity goss, and out-of-touch stars. The podcast is even hosting a 6-location tour later this year! There are book clubs about Pheobe Bridges, sad twenty-somethings, and eclectic Black authors. So grab a cup of tea, a celebrity book rec, and get into the literary vibe! 

Are you team Jong-woo or team Jin-young? The second season of “Singles Inferno” finished releasing on January 10, and the internet has been all over this show. “Singles Inferno,” a Korean dating show, follows 12 singles on “Inferno,” an abandoned island near Incheon, who aim to find love. Individuals compete to win a trip to “Paradise,” a hotel with a Michelin-starred restaurant and pool known for steamy scenes. The series is ripe with rivalries, unrequited love, and displays of affection. Fans have swooned over a certain Ivy League student, cheered on couples, and related to those left alone in the final episode. On Twitter, @bcd776 complained, “I hate when the contestants on singles inferno all pick the obvious choice,” alluding to the one guy and girl everyone seems to adore (wink wink). Since the show aired, fans have been stalking the cast’s social media to see who’s official (so far, one has confirmed). My personal favorites? The Jurassic Park couple — if you know, you know. 

boygenius has Gen Z in a chokehold! The group consists of three of young people’s favorite artists — Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus, and Julien Baker. Their first EP was in 2018, with a hiatus on releases until an announcement and EP drop on January 18. The group is also planning to perform at Coachella in late April. The comments are typical hype Gen Z energy: “big day for doc marten wearers and oat milk latte drinkers,” “BYE I JUST PASSED AWAY,” “ok i guess i’ll stay alive this year,” “this is like the second coming of jesus.” boygenius was formed when the three women decided to combat the pitting together of women in rock and music in general. Each artist has captivated Gen Z in their own way — Bridgers has trended on TikTok over and over again and built a crew of “Pharbs,” Dacus grew a fanbase from “Night Shift” and has become a face of the indie generation, and Baker draws young people in through expert songwriting and thirsty pictures. Their TikTok with Rolling Stone, where they quip they’ve all eaten dog food, received 143.9 thousand likes. We’ll just have to play $20 on repeat until March 31st. 

The newest iconic brand account on Twitter is a little … wild 😉 Oklahoma’s Department of Wildlife is giving us the Gen Z nature content we needed, from Prince Harry jokes to “Abbott Elementary as wildlife” posts. Their account currently has 153.2 thousand followers due to their witty Tweets about leucistic bald eagles, whitetail deer acting like Kardashians, and fish sandals. An iconic January 2022 “danger kitty” post that receieved 124.9 thousand likes sent thousands of accounts to a previously niche wildlife page. The OK Department of Wildlife page is proof that you don’t need to be well-known to build a dedicated social media following. Because, “believe it or not, [they] are an actual government agency.” 

College students around the US are bugging right now! For what? Only Bojangles newest creation, hard sweet tea. The Southern restaurant teamed up with North Carolina-based Appalachian Mountain Brewery to create the drink. Bojangles plans to launch hard sweet tea in March in the Carolinas and expand nationwide throughout 2023. @risa.bolash tagged Bojangles in a collection of messages friends sent her about the news, noting “the extreme level to which [she’s their] target audience.” UNC Chicks captioned a photo of the sweet tea with, “This changes everything.” For (predominantly Southeast) university students, Bojangles is an iconic hangover staple; now, they can have a Bo’s Chicken Sandwich during the AM and a hard sweet tea in the PM. @j_nejman11 is calling this “singlehandedly … the greatest food invention to ever hit the southern states of America.” Bojangles is on track to switch up the tailgate energy! 


✨ Finn Wolfhard and yally’s “Party Party” — what could be better? This trend takes a video of Wolfhard walking and snapping to transition between two different things. Check out examples by TrapStix Lip Balm and NFL on FOX

✨ “They’re bombs …” This TikTok sound clarifies everything from Pink Drinks’ caffeine levels to how long you want to date for. Young people have brought light to protective hairstyles, test-taking methods, and masculine lesbians, all to a Spongebob audio. 

✨ What has Kim Kardashian bought now? This Twitter trend parodies news headlines by quoting, “BREAKING: Kim Kardashian has purchased _ for $_, TMZ reports.” According to Tweets, she’s purchased “the Lizzie McGuire Movie igloo dress,” “Louis Tomlinson’s iconic suspenders,” and “Obama’s Tan Suit.” Make your company the next joke purchase! 

Screenshot of the Week 

Dubbed “the most inspirational edit of all time,” this screenshot is a frame of @yrwkasi’s “hopecore” edit. Hopecore is a subset of the corecore and nichecore movements on TikTok that aims to emphasize the indomitable human spirit. Videos include snippets of “The Lego Movie,” nature, awards shows, and “Birdman.” With a social media algorithm that thrives on negative emotions, and users that easily get sucked into doomscrolling and nihilism, hopecore is a positive change. Sophie Lou Wilson noted that her friends “used to send each other depression memes and now [they] send each other hopecore tiktoks.” The world is full of beauty, and hopecore helps to remind Gen Z of this fact. 

Harmonie Ramsden