What is the Best Book Genre?


Emma Mor, Staff Writer

After spending so much time at home, one of the hobbies the students of Cresskill High School have picked up is reading. Although some may argue about who the best character is, I find the biggest debate to be determining what the best book genre is. Fiction/fantasy, romance, dystopian, mystery, science fiction, and historical fiction are six of the most popular genres among today’s teens. 

In my opinion, the fantasy genre is the best/my favorite genre. I have never read a boring fantasy/fiction book and the authors always know how to keep me, as a reader, on my toes. There is a cliffhanger at the end of every chapter and somehow that results in me reading until two in the morning. Some of my favorite fantasy books (that are also quite well-known) are Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, and Shadow and Bone. These are only three out of several fantasy books that I could re-read several times. 

When I sent out a survey to the students of CHS, the results failed to surprise me. 

Just as I suspected, the fiction/fantasy genre was the most popular among CHS students. Mystery came in second place, romance in third, and dystopian in fourth. Many students mentioned that fiction/fantasy and dystopian interests them the most because it allows them to “escape into a different world.” Others say that fiction/fantasy writings provide them with a different story that they have not seen before. “It is something that is not repetitive… You see real things all the time. Let’s spice it up and see something new,” says a freshman at Cresskill High School. As for the people that responded with mystery, they claimed that mystery “keeps them on their toes” and “maintains [their] interest since [they] don’t know what will happen next.” 

Ross Douthat from the New York Times says that the genre of fiction flourishes due to the different topics and ideas that can grow from one genre. It “has become an unlikely laboratory for serious writers,” where they can grow and evolve their works. It is not restricted to certain guidelines, like historical fiction or mystery genres. One day you can read a story about dragons and fairies and the next you can read about a girl’s journey to go through a magical forest. The possibilities are endless and writers definitely use this to their advantage. 

According to ProActive Writer, the most popular fiction genre is fantasy, with science fiction in second place. On their website, they categorize all stories that are not non-fiction into the fiction genre, whether that be romance or historical fiction. Out of all of these genres, fantasy was the most popular. They gained their data from looking at how many books from each genre were sold through the Amazon/Kindle Bookstore in 2021. 

Some may argue that realistic fiction should be the most popular genre because it is relatable. Realistic fiction helps us relate lessons we learn from books into our own lives. We can relate not only to a character’s personality, but also their struggles and victories. However, I personally find realistic fiction books, such as romance or coming-of-age novels to be repetitive. Occasionally, you can find an interesting book, but most of the time the plot falls into the category of first: a decent life, second: a good life with some drawbacks, third: a life falling apart, and fourth: a great life. A variety in the setting or characters may keep the reader interested, but how many books like this can one get through before becoming bored. On the other hand, fiction provides a wide range of settings, plot lines, and struggles that have never failed to lose my interest. 

“I like fiction because I can escape into a different world,” says a junior from Cresskill High School. Fantasy has never disappointed me when reading, whether it be from mythical characters to magical settings.