We aim to write what we enjoy reading. It could be a mystery, comedy, or something else. Different genres abound in the realm of literature. The world of fiction is separated into two categories: literary fiction and genre fiction. Literary fiction refers to character-driven books that depict some facet of the human condition and are frequently assigned to English classes. The appeal of fiction is more mainstream and populist. Mystery, thriller, comedy, romance, and children’s literature are typical of the most popular book genres.

However, if you’re a voracious reader, it’s easy to become engrossed in what appears to be an infinite number of genres, which might feel confining at times. Which do you prefer: science fiction or fantasy? Are there even differences between a mystery and a thriller? And what exactly does the term “genre” imply?

For all those bibliophiles out there with these burning questions, we’ve compiled a list of the most popular book genres, along with definitions, so you’ll precisely know what to search for on your next trip to the bookshop or Amazon.


We’d never be able to resist you, romance. The main protagonists’ love story is the genre’s focus, which makes your heart all warm and fuzzy. The world of fiction is enormous in and of itself. We’re all suckers for love stories, and romance novel enthusiasts are willing to spend a lot of money to do so. The most and by far popular genre in terms of book sales are romance. Romance novels can be purchased at supermarket checkout lines, all over country shipment, publishers, online, and through self-publishing services. Readers in the romance genre are notoriously loyal to their favorite authors. Two popular romance subgenres are paranormal romance and historical romance.


We tend to get crazy about the dark side of life as book readers. For the first time, crime fiction surpassed general and literary fiction as the most popular adult fiction genre in the United Kingdom in 2017. The most popular genres for fiction books appear to be crime/thriller and romance. They are continually vying for first place. It has something to do with the feelings they elicit. While romance novels make readers feel warm and cuddly on the inside, thrillers immerse them in the darkest side of existence. This is what exactly fans expect from books like “The Interview by C.M. Ewan.” A book from this category is frequently referred to as a page-turner. You can read these novels faster than most others if they are well written. After all, who isn’t interested in finding out who did it?

Young Adult Fantasy and Science Fiction

The genre’s devotion to readers is high. Various subgenres may exist, but young adult literature has become the most popular. The majority of the stories in these books take place in an alternate universe or our world with a twist. This genre accounts for roughly half of the top 20 best-selling books of all time. Anything, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, and House of Sky Breath: Crescent City Book are just a few examples. If you’re concerned about having to compete with these massive titles, there’s some good news. Self-published or Amazon-published books accounted for almost 48% of overall book sales in this genre.

Autobiographies and Biographies

Everyone needs a little help from time to time to understand the world they live in, which is where self-help books come in. These books may not be on the tier list of best-selling books, but they’re consistent sellers with a readership willing to pay for knowledge. The publishing sector is seeing a surge in self-help, self-improvement, and inspirational literature, such as biographical accounts. Biographies are by someone who writes the experience of others to turn it to be a topic of the book, while autobiographies are written by the one who experienced it and serve as an authentic record of the details and events of their lives. These books present accurate information backed up by several sources.

Children’s Fiction

Writing books for younger readers takes a lot of expertise, but if you can write well for children, you’ll find that there are hordes of eager young bookworms waiting for new books to feed their reading hobby. Both paper and eBook editions of children’s books are extremely popular. Children read more books than adults on average. This is because they enjoy becoming immersed in a fantasy world. Everything is good for the child if it piques their senses in finding adventure and being attentive to the invention. A picture book differs from a comic book or graphic novel as the latter are for older readers. Children’s fiction also includes the fairy tale subgenre.

Women’s Fiction

Women’s literature, another genre that covers many others, is written specifically for female readers and typically reflects on the experiences of being a woman in society and the protagonist’s progress. There has been much increase in the demand for books featuring strong female protagonists. In fact, books with strong female protagonists are gaining popularity. This applies to all genres and niches. Adults seek someone to inspire them, and children are looking for female role models to loop up to. It’s fair that representation is gaining recognition, especially with the shortage of strong female leaders in the past.


Horror writers frequently incorporate supernatural and paranormal themes in morbid stories that are sometimes too realistic. These stories generate discomfort, chill, and terror in both the character and the reader. Thriller and horror, which are closely related to mysteries and occasionally fantasy, heighten the suspense and shock in the popular genre of fiction. Authors like Edgar Allan Poe and David Baldacci lead the best-selling list with their thriller titles. Oh, and we almost forgot, the king of horror fiction, Stephen King.

Final Takeaway

Choosing the correct genre can help you increase your book sales, but it’s more than just picking the most popular book genres. Ensure that everything you publish will captivate your audience and provide them with the information they seek. Choose a genre in which you are confident in your ability to write. This way, you’ll be able to cultivate a dedicated readership who will always like your publications. If your books fit into one of these categories, consider yourself lucky! 

Can you imagine your book on the shelf with the genre’s most popular titles? We certainly hope so! Also, in our Professional Book Promotion and Services, we’d love to see your books and hear about your successes. When you book your promotion with Publishing Profits, be sure to use this service.



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