Jake Dockins

If you’re paying attention you will see Colleen Hoover’s books everywhere you look, and more specifically, young people devouring them. Like many, I tore through her 2016 book It Ends With Us on a flight. Colleen has mastered emotionally fraught narratives—and women are paying attention. Whether you count yourself a Colleen Hoover fan or not, her influence on the publishing industry is undeniable. There are more than 20 million copies of her 24 books in circulation. In 2022, she outsold the Bible. At one point last year, six of her titles simultaneously held top-10 spots on the New York Times paperback fiction best-seller list.

And thanks to her rise on #BookTok, she has motivated an entire generation of readers back to bookstores and libraries. But Colleen—who like me is a Texan—hailing from small town Sulphur Springs, has not forgotten her home. She is also paying it forward with her nonprofit bookstore, the Bookworm Box, on Main Street and a literary festival Book Bonanza in Texas for up-and-coming writers.

Bush Hager is the co-host of NBC’s Today With Hoda & Jenna and founder of Read With Jenna

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