Unique Crazy Book Genres We Loved From the 2023 Year

Crazy Book Genres is Bookstr’s fun-loving series where we talk about unusual book subgenres. Here are our favorite genres from this year!

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The Crazy Book Genre series is Bookstr’s favorite to write and do graphics on! It’s where we dissect genres that are considered “crazy” or unusual. The graphics create “fake” book covers and our followers on Instagram must identify which book was created from our graphics team and which ones are actually published books. It’s then accompanied by an article that discusses the crazy genre in question.

The origin of the genre is out on full display, along with a list of books for your fancy. As 2023 is coming to a close, we’ve encountered some peculiar stories. Within the romance genre there are A LOT of subgenres that are out of the world… Quite literally. Here are 12 crazy book genres that we could not get enough of!

Amish Romance

An Amish village with a wagon.
IMAGE VIA UNSPLASH / PRASWIN PRAKASHAN

Oh, were you unaware of Amish Romance? So were we! It gives Victorian Era romantic literature, which, if you are into, this is the genre for you! But don’t let the title of the genre fool you. There are plenty of spicy Amish Romance stories ready for you as well. An Amish romance story is usually about two young adults finding love on a prairie.

Gay Bear

Two bears together on grass.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / JHADE GALES

This was a major shock for our team. What do you mean, “Gay Bear”? Are bears getting it on in the bookish world? Kind of… There are two types of Gay Bear literature — one where the bears abide by Shifter rules, similar to werewolves and other animals. The second is where at least one man from the romantic coupling identifies as a bear. So no mystical happenings on the latter.

Reverse Harem

Contemporary reverse harem why choose book covers.
FEATURED IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR/ KRISTI ESKEW

Do you just want to read smut? Okay, then Reverse Harem is just for you. Usually, Reverse Harem contains one female protagonist who is in a relationship with four or more men at the same time. They all share her, and they usually do not get jealous within this act. They also are all straight, so they only have sex with her— the title card of “Why Choose?” rings throughout the entire trope. Expect loads of sexy scenes!

Dark Romance

Dark romance three book covers of The RItual, Twist Me, and Deviant King.
FEATURED IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / JAIDEN CRUZ

Lately, Dark Romance has been popping off on Booktok, and for good reason. Dark Romance is the deepest and darkest romantic couplings. Want a stalker boyfriend? Want a mafia, drug-lord man who would kill anyone that looked your way? What about an Underground fighter from the bad side of town? And do not get me started on the steamy scenes! Remember to always be on the lookout for Trigger Warnings.

Lesbian Steampunk

Steampunk background with 3 lesbian steampunk book covers.
FEATURED IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / MADISON WEIR

Think of the notorious and inventive Steampunk genre… just make it lesbian. The Steampunk lesbian genre is all about mixing different themes such as romance, horror, and fantasy while intermixing them with common plot lines of same sex relationship troubles, whether internal or external conflicts.

Cult Romance

Three cult romance book covers on a smoky background
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / KRISTI ESKEW

So, you know how the Dark Romance is on this list? Think of a sub (sub) category of that. There are quite literally hundreds. In one of those particular subcategories, you’ll find the nifty, scary subgenre of Cult Romance. The protagonist faces a thriller/suspense-like love story where they are connected to a cult of some sort. Tropes such as enemies-to-lovers, savior, forced proximity, sexual awakening, and secret identity are the main themes to look out for. Beware of TW!

Space Cowboy Romance

A collage of colorful pictures of space and space cowboy romance books.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / EMALEE PENNINGTON

This crazy book genre mixes three different genres: Space, Cowboys, AND Romance. Sounds like a whirlwind if you ask us. Essentially, think of all the common tropes from the three subcategories and how it becomes this weird, centric story of cowboys fighting for love in space.

Stockholm Syndrome

Twist me, Stolen, and The Good Girl book covers.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / SARA MCCOY

Here’s yet another Dark Romance subgenre. Stockholm Syndrome is oddly usual. The female protagonist is taken from a mysterious man. She then slowly yet gradually falls for her captor. He may or may not be abusive, have stalker-like behavior, and creepy… Do they end up together? It depends on whether the story leans more toward romance or thriller.

Monster Romance

Monster romance covers on a black and white shot through a forest.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / KRISTI ESKEW

So for this genre, imagine a monster. Gross, disgustingly large, monstrously grotesque… yeah, he is the love interest for the protagonist. Most of these stories are filled with smutty and sexy scenes. Read at your own risk!

Demon Romance

Lucifer demon romance eye.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSTR / TRISH G

Demons are either scary or sexy… perhaps a bit of both. Demon Romance mixes Dark Romance themes with supernatural horror elements. Want to fall in love with a Demon King who would burn the entire world for you? This genre is just for you!


If you want to look at how everything first started for Crazy Book Genres, click here! For more round-ups, click here!

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