2023 was another record year for public libraries! Not only did 2023 see the one billionth title borrowed through the Libby app, but last year readers checked out 662 million ebooks, audiobooks, and digital magazines. That’s a 19 percent increase over 2022!

Colleen Hoover dominated the ebook list, thanks to her continued popularity on social media site TikTok. As shared a few weeks ago, Prince Harry’s Spare came out on top as the most popular nonfiction book, especially the audiobook version read by the Duke of Sussex himself which was second only to the wildly-successful Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros.

This past year also saw the introduction of deep search and Notify Me tags. Deep search allows users to view additional titles from OverDrive’s complete catalog of over 5 million titles, even if the books are not in the library’s digital collection. By tapping “Notify Me” on a title that is not in the library’s collection, the reader alerts their library of their interest and Libby notifies the reader if the title is purchased and made available to borrow. Unsurprisingly, Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros, the follow-up to Fourth Wing, was the top requested digital title via Notify Me Tags.

Later this week we’ll be sharing the libraries that achieved at least one million digital checkouts in 2023, so be sure to subscribe to the OverDrive blog now to stay up-to-date. Until then, let’s take a look back at the most borrowed ebooks and audiobooks of 2023.

Most popular ebooks and audiobooks borrowed from libraries in 2023

Most popular ebooks borrowed from libraries

  1. Verity by Colleen Hoover 
  2. Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus 
  3. It Starts with Us by Colleen Hoover 
  4. It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover 
  5. Happy Place by Emily Henry 

Most popular audiobooks borrowed from libraries

  1. Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros 
  2. Spare by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex 
  3. I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy 
  4. Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus 
  5. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Most popular comics & graphic novels borrowed from libraries

  1. Big Nate series by Lincoln Peirce 
  2. Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney 
  3. Baby-Sitters Club Graphix series by Ann M. Martin 
  4. Dog Man series by Dav Pilkey 
  5. Heartstopper series by Alice Oseman 

Top digital books requested from libraries via Notify Me Tags

  1. Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros  
  2. None of This Is True by Lisa Jewell 
  3. The Woman in Me by Britney Spears 
  4. House of Flame and Shadow by Sarah J. Maas 
  5. The Last Devil to Die by Richard Osman 

Check back tomorrow as we take a look back at the most popular films, documentaries, and TV series watched on Kanopy in 2023!

A woman with black glasses and long pink wavy hair smiles at the camera.About the author: Jill Grunenwald is a Marketing & Communications Specialist on the North America Public Library Marketing Team. A former librarian, she joined OverDrive in 2015. Outside of the office she can be found writing, hanging out with her cats, collecting more Tarot decks than she has room for, and playing competitive pinball. Her favorite genre is something she calls “Murder at an educational institution that involves a close-knit group of suspicious characters.”