Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR September 2019

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopsis of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

The Kiss of Deception (The Remnant Chronicles #1) by Mary E. Pearson

In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.

On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.

The Kiss of Deception is the first audiobook in Mary E. Pearson’s Remnant Chronicles

Date added to TBR:Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch?Keep
Comments: I actually have the boxed set of this entire series. I love the covers and those are honestly what drew me to them. I definitely want to keep this one.

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas

It’s Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off on a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives. But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations.

As Anna sets out to find her friend’s killer, she discovers hard truths about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.

As she awaits the judge’s decree, it becomes clear that everyone around her thinks she is not just guilty, but dangerous. When the truth comes out, it is more shocking than one could ever imagine…

Date added to TBR:Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch?Keep
Comments:I actually really want to read more psychological thrillers and this one sounds pretty awesome. It also is very highly rated on Goodreads.

Confess by Colleen Hoover

Auburn Reed is determined to rebuild her shattered life and she has no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to become deeply attracted to the studio’s enigmatic artist, Owen Gentry.

For once, Auburn takes a chance and puts her heart in control, only to discover that Owen is hiding a huge secret. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything Auburn loves most, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it—but can she do it?

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch?Keep
Comments:I honestly don’t even need to read the synopsis, I plan to read everything Colleen Hoover writes.

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?

Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit, busy life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job, and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.

Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger than life personalities there will be a welcome respite.

Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?

In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty takes on the foundations of our lives: marriage, sex, parenthood, and friendship. She shows how guilt can expose the fault lines in the most seemingly strong relationships, how what we don’t say can be more powerful than what we do, and how sometimes it is the most innocent of moments that can do the greatest harm.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This is a whole lot of meh for me. I’m deeply uninterested in this type of story these days.

The Princess Saves Herself in This One (Women Are Some Kind of Magic #1) by Amanda Lovelace

“Ah, life- the thing that happens to us while we’re off somewhere else blowing on dandelions & wishing ourselves into the pages of our favorite fairy tales.”

A poetry collection divided into four different parts: the princess, the damsel, the queen, & you. the princess, the damsel, & the queen piece together the life of the author in three stages, while you serves as a note to the reader & all of humankind. Explores life & all of its love, loss, grief, healing, empowerment, & inspirations.

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This book is currently on my bookshelf and I still definitely want to read it!

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

Milk and honey’ is a collection of poetry and prose about survival. About the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. It is split into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose. Deals with a different pain. Heals a different heartache. ‘milk and honey’ takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: My niece has been trying to get me to read this forever.

Lady Midnight (The Dark Artifices #1) by Cassandra Clare

The Shadowhunters of Los Angeles star in the first novel in Cassandra Clare’s newest series, The Dark Artifices, a sequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series. Lady Midnight is a Shadowhunters novel.

It’s been five years since the events of City of Heavenly Fire that brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion. Emma Carstairs is no longer a child in mourning, but a young woman bent on discovering what killed her parents and avenging her losses.

Together with her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches across Los Angeles, from the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica. If only her heart didn’t lead her in treacherous directions…

Making things even more complicated, Julian’s brother Mark—who was captured by the faeries five years ago—has been returned as a bargaining chip. The faeries are desperate to find out who is murdering their kind—and they need the Shadowhunters’ help to do it. But time works differently in faerie, so Mark has barely aged and doesn’t recognize his family. Can he ever truly return to them? Will the faeries really allow it?

Glitz, glamours, and Shadowhunters abound in this heartrending opening to Cassandra Clare’s Dark Artifices series.

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I’ve been trying to get on this series bandwagon for a long time. I’ve not given up yet!

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Long before she was the terror of Wonderland—the infamous Queen of Hearts—she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.

Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next queen.

Then Cath meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the king and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship. Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

In her first stand-alone teen novel, the New York Times-bestselling author dazzles us with a prequel to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This book is gorgeous and sounds interesting.

The Winner’s Curse (The Winner’s Trilogy #1) by Marie Rutkoski

Winning what you want may cost you everything you love…

As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions.

One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin.

But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I have this entire series on my bookshelf and although it has gotten mixed reviews, I still would like to give it a try.

The Falconer
(The Falconer #1) by Elizabeth May

One girl’s nightmare is this girl’s faery tale

She’s a stunner.
Edinburgh, 1844. Eighteen-year-old Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, has everything a girl could dream of: brains, charm, wealth, a title—and drop-dead beauty.

She’s a liar.
But Aileana only looks the part of an aristocratic young lady. she’s leading a double life: She has a rare ability to sense the sìthíchean—the faery race obsessed with slaughtering humans—and, with the aid of a mysterious mentor, has spent the year since her mother died learning how to kill them.

She’s a murderer.
Now Aileana is dedicated to slaying the fae before they take innocent lives. With her knack for inventing ingenious tools and weapons—from flying machines to detonators to lightning pistols—ruthless Aileana has one goal: Destroy the faery who destroyed her mother.

She’s a Falconer.
The last in a line of female warriors born with a gift for hunting and killing the fae, Aileana is the sole hope of preventing a powerful faery population from massacring all of humanity. Suddenly, her quest is a lot more complicated. She still longs to avenge her mother’s murder—but she’ll have to save the world first.

The first volume of a trilogy from an exciting new voice in young adult fantasy, this electrifying thriller combines romance and action, steampunk technology and Scottish lore in a deliciously addictive read.

Date added to TBR: Dec 06, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: I just don’t ever see myself reading this one. The reviews aren’t great and for me to read this type of book, I think it would need to be super hyped.

Here are the stats

Starting Total TBR Count: 1994
Previous Total TBR Count: 1988
Updated Total TBR Count: 2041
Total Ditched Today: 2
Total Kept Today: 8

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR April 2019

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopsis of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

The Long Road Home by Danielle Steel

Bestselling novelist Danielle Steel takes us on a harrowing journey into the heart of America’s hidden shame in a novel that explores the power of forgiveness, the dark side of childhood, and one woman’s unbreakable spirit.

From her secret perch at the top of the stairs, Gabriella Harrison watches the guests arrive at her parents’ lavish Manhattan townhouse. At seven, she knows she is an intruder in her parents’ party, in her parents’ life. But she can’t resist the magic. Later, she waits for the click, click, click of her mother’s high heels, the angry words, and the pain that will follow. Gabriella already knows to hide her bruises, certain she is to blame for her mother’s rage–and her father’s failure to protect her. Her world is a confusing blend of terror, betrayal, and pain. Her parents’ aristocratic world is no safeguard against the abuse that knows no boundaries, respects no person, no economic lines. Gabriella knows that, try as she might, there is no safe place for her to hide.

Even as a child, her only escape is through the stories she writes. Only writing can dull the pain of her lonely world. And when her parents’ marriage collapses, Gabriella is given her first reprieve, as her father disappears, and then her mother abandons her to a convent. There, Gabriella’s battered body and soul begin to mend. Amid the quiet safety and hushed rituals of the nuns, Gabriella grows into womanhood in a safe, peaceful world. Then a young priest comes into her life.

Father Joe Connors never questioned his vocation until Gabriella entered the confessional and shared her soul. Confession leads to friendship. And friendship grows dangerously into love. Like Gabriella, Joe is haunted by the pain of his childhood, consumed by guilt over a family tragedy, for which he blames himself. With Gabriella, Joe takes the first steps toward healing. But their relationship leads to tragedy as Joe must choose between the priesthood and Gabriella, and life in the real world where he fears he does not belong, and cannot cope.

Exiled and disgraced, and nearly destroyed, Gabriella struggles to survive on her own in New York. There she seeks healing and escape through her writing again, this time as an adult, and her life as a writer begins. But just when she thinks she is beyond hurt, Gabriella is once again betrayed by someone she trusts. Brought to the edge of despair, physically attacked beyond recognition and belief, haunted by abuse in her present and her past, she nonetheless manages to find hope again, and the courage to face the past. On a pilgrimage destined to bring her face-to-face with those who sought to destroy her in her early life, she finds forgiveness, freedom from guilt, and healing from abuse. When Gabriella faces what was done to her, and why, she herself is free at last.

With profound insight, Danielle Steel has created a vivid portrait of an abused child’s broken world, and the courage necessary to face it and free herself from the past. A work of daring and compassion, a tale of healing that will shock and touch and move you to your very soul, it exposes the terror of child abuse, and opens the doors on a subject that affects us all. The Long Road Home is more than riveting fiction. It is an inspiration to us all. A work of courage, hope, and love.

Date added to TBR:Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch?Ditch
Comments: I recently got rid of all of my paperback books… well, most of them… including many of, if not all, of my Danielle Steel books.

Collide (Collide #1) by Gail McHugh

A missed first encounter…

Colliding with a second chance…

On the heels of graduating college and trying to cope with her mother’s death, Emily Cooper moves to New York City for a fresh start.

While harboring secrets of his own, Dillon Parker takes care of Emily through her grief. Knowing he can’t live without her by his side, he’s sweet, thoughtful, and everything Emily has ever wanted in a man.

Until she meets Gavin Blake—a rich and notorious playboy who is dangerously sexy and charming as hell. Emily tries to deny the instant connection she feels, but Mr. Tall, Dark, and Handsome is not inclined to let go so easily. Recovering from his own painful past, Gavin will stop at nothing to win Emily over.

This unexpected encounter compels Emily to question her decisions, forcing her to make a choice that will destroy friendships, shatter hearts, and forever change her life.

Date added to TBR:Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch?Ditch
Comments:I’m so over the rich, playboy trope.

The All Souls Real-Time Reading Companion (All Souls Trilogy) by Deborah Harkness

This exclusive ALL SOULS trilogy real-time reading guide brings to life the world created by Deborah Harkness in A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES and SHADOW OF NIGHT, taking you through the auspicious dates of the story with exciting behind-the-scenes extra content.

A world of witches, daemons and vampires.
A manuscript which holds the secrets of their past and the key to their future.
Diana and Matthew – the forbidden love at the heart of it.

It began with A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES. It continued with SHADOW OF NIGHT.

Now, as THE BOOK OF LIFE has brought Deborah Harkness’s stunning No.1 internationally bestselling trilogy to its finale, re-immerse yourself in the rich fantasy world she has created and enrich your experience of the heart-stopping conclusion.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch?Ditch
Comments:Clearly the me from July 2016 was thoroughly obsessed with this series.

Arsen: A Broken Love Story by Mia Asher

One glance was all it took…

I’m a cheater.
I’m a liar.
My whole life is a mess.

I love a man.
No, I love two men…
I think.

One makes love to me. The other sets me on fire.
One is my rock. The other is my kryptonite.

I’m broken, lost, and disgusted with myself.

But I can’t stop. This is my story.
My broken love story.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This sounds really good!

From Ashes (From Ashes #1) by Molly McAdams

Aside from her dad, who passed away when she was six, Cassidy Jameson has only ever trusted one man: her best friend, Tyler. So of course she follows him to Texas when he leaves for college. She just didn’t expect to be so drawn to their new roommate, Gage, a gorgeous guy with a husky Southern drawl. The only problem? He’s Tyler’s cousin.

Gage Carson was excited to share an apartment off campus with his cousin. He didn’t mind that Tyler was bringing the mysterious friend he’d heard about since they were kids … until the most beautiful girl he’s ever seen jumps out of his cousin’s Jeep. There’s something about Cassi that makes Gage want to give her everything. Too bad Tyler has warned him that she’s strictly off-limits.

Despite everything keeping them apart, Cassi and Gage dance dangerously close to the touch they’re both been craving. But when disaster sends her running into Tyler’s arms, Cassi will have to decide whether to face the demons of her past … or to burn her chance at a future with Gage.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: The ratings are really high!

The Dead Travel Fast by Deanna Raybourn

A husband, a family, a comfortable life: Theodora Lestrange lives in terror of it all. With a modest inheritance and the three gowns that comprise her entire wardrobe, Theodora leaves Edinburgh–and a disappointed suitor–far behind. She is bound for Rumania, where tales of vampires are still whispered, to visit an old friend and write the book that will bring her true independence.

She arrives at a magnificent, decaying castle in the Carpathians, replete with eccentric inhabitants: the ailing dowager; the troubled steward; her own fearful friend, Cosmina. But all are outstripped in dark glamour by the castle’s master, Count Andrei Dragulescu.

Bewildering and bewitching in equal measure, the brooding nobleman ignites Theodora’s imagination and awakens passions in her that she can neither deny nor conceal. His allure is superlative, his dominion over the superstitious town, absolute–Theodora may simply be one more person under his sway.

Before her sojourn is ended–or her novel completed–Theodora will have encountered things as strange and terrible as they are seductive. For obsession can prove fatal…and she is in danger of falling prey to more than desire.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: Eh.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I can’t believe this has been on my TBR for so long!

Nightshade (Nightshade #1) by Andrea Cremer

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she’ll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters’ laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known.

By following her heart, she might lose everything- including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

“A finely-wrought compelling tale of romance and treachery…”
-Cynthia Leitich Smith
(New York Times bestselling author of
Eternal and Tantalize)

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This sounds super interesting, actually.

The Conspiracy of Us (The Conspiracy of Us #1) by Maggie Hall

Avery West’s newfound family can shut down Prada when they want to shop in peace, and can just as easily order a bombing when they want to start a war. Part of a powerful and dangerous secret society called the Circle, they believe Avery is the key to an ancient prophecy. Some want to use her as a pawn. Some want her dead.

To unravel the mystery putting her life in danger, Avery must follow a trail of clues from the monuments of Paris to the back alleys of Istanbul with two boys who work for the Circle — beautiful, volatile Stellan and mysterious, magnetic Jack. But as the clues expose a stunning conspiracy that might plunge the world into World War 3, she discovers that both boys are hiding secrets of their own. Now she will have to choose not only between freedom and family — but between the boy who might help her save the world, and the one she’s falling in love with.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: Meh.

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

“There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.

Date added to TBR: Jul 31, 2016
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This is another one that I can’t believe I haven’t read after so long!

Here are the stats

Starting Total TBR Count: 1994
Previous Total TBR Count: 1951
Updated Total TBR Count: 1988
Total Ditched Today: 5
Total Kept Today: 5

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR March 2019

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopsis of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

 


 
The Book of Love (Magdalene Line Trilogy #2) by Kathleen McGowan

Maureen Paschal thought she might rest and work on her book after discovering the gospel written by Mary Magdalene that revealed Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married. The truth of their story rocked the world and made Maureen a target of those who did not like her discovery and a heroine to those who did. Then Maureen receives a strange package containing what looks like an ancient letter written in Latin and signed with a symbol. She discovers that its author is an extraordinary woman whom history has overlooked — or covered up — Countess Matilda of Tuscany, and in the letter Matilda demands the return of her “most precious books and documents.” Maureen soon finds herself in a race across Italy and France, where hidden dangers await her and her lover, Berenger, as they begin to realize that they are on the trail of another explosive discovery: the Book of Love, the Gospel written in Jesus’ own hand. As Maureen learns more about Matilda, an eleventhcentury warrior countess who was secretly married to a pope, she begins to see the eerie connections between herself and Matilda, connections she must trace to their source if she is to stop the wrong people from finding the Book of Love and hiding it forever. Weaving together Matilda’s little-known true story and Maureen’s thrilling search, “The Book of Love” follows two amazing heroines as their stories intertwine through time. Maureen is immersed in the mysteries of the labyrinth, the beautiful poetry of the Song of Songs, the world’s greatest art and architecture, and Matilda’s amazing legacy…until a potentially fatal encounter reveals the Book of Love to Maureen — and to the reader.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: Dear me from June 27, 2011… y tho?

The Six Rules of Maybe by Deb Caletti

Scarlet spends most of her time worrying about other people. Some are her friends, others are practically strangers, and then there are the ones no else even notices. Trying to fix their lives comes naturally to her. And pushing her own needs to the side is part of the deal. So when her older sister comes home unexpectedly married and pregnant, Scarlet has a new person to worry about. But all of her good intentions are shattered when the unthinkable happens: she falls for her sister’s husband. For the first time in a long time, Scarlet’s not fixing a problem, she’s at the center of one. And ignoring her feelings doesn’t seem to be an option…

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: It is my personal mission to read every Deb Caletti book ever written. Also, I own this book already.

Dead Beautiful (Dead Beautiful #1)by Yvonne Woon

On the morning of her sixteenth birthday, Renée Winters was still an ordinary girl. She spent her summers at the beach, had the perfect best friend, and had just started dating the cutest guy at school. No one she’d ever known had died. But all that changes when she finds her parents dead in the Redwood Forest, in what appears to be a strange double murder.

After the funeral Renée’s wealthy grandfather sends her to Gottfried Academy, a remote and mysterious boarding school in Maine, where she finds herself studying subjects like Philosophy, Latin, and the “Crude Sciences.”

It’s there that she meets Dante Berlin, a handsome and elusive boy to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they grow closer, unexplainable things begin to happen, but Renée can’t stop herself from falling in love. It’s only when she discovers a dark tragedy in Gottfried’s past that she begins to wonder if the Academy is everything it seems.

Little does she know, Dante is the one hiding a dangerous secret, one that has him fearing for her life.

Dead Beautiful is both a compelling romance and thought-provoking read, bringing shocking new meaning to life, death, love, and the nature of the soul.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This is already on my bookshelf. I don’t plan on unhauling it just yet 🙂

Juliet, Naked by Nick Hornby

Annie loves Duncan — or thinks she does. Duncan loves Annie, but then, all of a sudden, he doesn’t. Duncan really loves Tucker Crowe, a reclusive Dylanish singer-songwriter who stopped making music ten years ago. Annie stops loving Duncan, and starts getting her own life.

In doing so, she initiates an e-mail correspondence with Tucker, and a connection is forged between two lonely people who are looking for more out of what they’ve got. Tucker’s been languishing (and he’s unnervingly aware of it), living in rural Pennsylvania with what he sees as his one hope for redemption amid a life of emotional and artistic ruin — his young son, Jackson. But then there’s also the new material he’s about to release to the world: an acoustic, stripped-down version of his greatest album, Juliet — entitled, Juliet, Naked.

What happens when a washed-up musician looks for another chance? And miles away, a restless, childless woman looks for a change? Juliet, Naked is a powerfully engrossing, humblingly humorous novel about music, love, loneliness, and the struggle to live up to one’s promise.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This had been on my bookshelf for a long time, but I actually recently sold it back to Books a Million since my sister forced me to watch the movie. I didn’t love the movie, so I don’t plan on reading the book either.

Secrets of Eden by Chris Bohjalian

From the bestselling author of The Double Bind, Midwives, and Skeletons at the Feast comes a novel of shattered faith, intimate secrets, and the delicate nature of sacrifice.

“There,” says Alice Hayward to Reverend Stephen Drew, just after her baptism, and just before going home to the husband who will kill her that evening and then shoot himself. Drew, tortured by the cryptic finality of that short utterance, feels his faith in God slipping away and is saved from despair only by a meeting with Heather Laurent, the author of wildly successful, inspirational books about . . . angels.

Heather survived a childhood that culminated in her own parents’ murder-suicide, so she identifies deeply with Alice’s daughter, Katie, offering herself as a mentor to the girl and a shoulder for Stephen – who flees the pulpit to be with Heather and see if there is anything to be salvaged from the spiritual wreckage around him.
But then the State’s Attorney begins to suspect that Alice’s husband may not have killed himself. . .and finds out that Alice had secrets only her minister knew.

Secrets of Eden is both a haunting literary thriller and a deeply evocative testament to the inner complexities that mark all of our lives. Once again Chris Bohjalian has given us a riveting page-turner in which nothing is precisely what it seems. As one character remarks, “Believe no one. Trust no one. Assume all of our stories are suspect.”

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This is on my bookshelf, but I honestly don’t plan on reading it. Time to unhaul it!

Midnight Bayou by Nora Roberts

Declan Fitzgerald had always been the family maverick, but even he couldn’t understand his impulse to buy a dilapidated mansion on the outskirts of New Orleans. All he knew was that ever since he first saw Manet Hall, he’d been enchanted-and obsessed-with it. So when the opportunity to buy the house comes up, Declan jumps at the chance to live out a dream.

Determined to restore Manet Hall to its former splendor, Declan begins the daunting renovation room by room, relying on his own labor and skills. But the days spent in total isolation in the empty house take a toll. He is seeing visions of days from a century past, and experiencing sensations of terror and nearly unbearable grief-sensations not his own, but those of a stranger. Local legend has it that the house is haunted, and with every passing day Declan’s belief in the ghostly presence grows.

Only the companionship of alluring Angelina Simone can distract him from the mysterious happenings in the house, but Angelina too has her own surprising connection to Manet Hall-a connection that will help Declan uncover a secret that’s been buried for a hundred years.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I have two shelves full of Nora Roberts books right now and I’ve only ever read one series by her. While I enjoyed it, the only reason why I own so many of her books is because I inherited them from a friend. TBH I don’t know that I’m ever going to get to reading most of them. I hate reading mass market paperbacks and 99% of them are in that format. At some point, when I gather enough books, I’m planning on getting rid of most of my mass market paperbacks. For now, though, I’ll hang on to this.

The Letter (The Christmas Box Trilogy #3) by Richard Paul Evans

Nineteen years after the death of their young daughter, an estranged couple finds a letter at the base of the girl’s gravestone. Feeling in his heart that the letter is from the mother who abandoned him as a child, the husband embarks on a poignant journey of self-discovery and renewed love. The bestselling author of THE CHRISTMAS BOX brings another universal message of hope and love to Spanish-speaking readers.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: It’s part of a series I haven’t read yet!

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

“Come to me–come to me entirely now,” said he. “Make my happiness–I will make yours.”

Born into a poor family and raised by an oppressive aunt, young Jane Eyre becomes the governess at Thornfield Manor to escape the confines of her life. There her fiery independence clashes with the brooding and mysterious nature of her employer, Mr. Rochester. But what begins as outright loathing slowly evolves into a passionate romance. When a terrible secret from Rochester’s past threatens to tear the two apart, Jane must make an impossible choice: Should she follow her heart or walk away and lose her love forever?

Unabashedly romantic and utterly enthralling, Jane Eyre endures as one of the greatest love stories of all time. This must-have edition of a timeless classic is beautifully presented for a modern teen audience.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: MUST. READ.

The Taking by Dean Koontz

On the morning that will mark the end of the world they have known, Molly and Niel Sloan awaken to the drumbeat of rain on their roof. It has haunted their sleep, invaded their dreams, and now they rise to find a luminous silvery downpour drenching their small California mountain town. A strange scent hangs faintly in the air, and the young couple cannot shake the sense of something wrong.

As hours pass and the rain continues to fall, Molly and Niel listen to disturbing news of extreme weather phenomena across the globe. Before evening, their little town loses television and radio reception. Then telephone and the Internet are gone. With the ceaseless rain now comes an obscuring fog that transforms the once-friendly village into a ghostly labyrinth. By nightfall the Sloans have gathered with some of their neighbors to deal with community damage… but also because they feel the need to band together against some unknown threat, some enemy they cannot identify or even imagine.

In the night, strange noises arise, and at a distance, in the rain and the mist, mysterious lights are seen drifting among the trees. The rain diminishes with the dawn, but a moody gray-purple twilight prevails. Soon Molly, Niel, and their small band of friends will be forced to draw on reserves of strength, courage, and humanity they never knew they had. For within the misty gloom they will encounter something that reveals in a terrifying instant what is happening to their world – something that is hunting them with ruthless efficiency.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This is 100% not my thing. Why did I add it?

Called Out of Darkness: A Spiritual Confession by Anne Rice

Autobiographical spiritual memoir providing an account of how the author rediscovered and fully embraced her Catholic faith after decadesas a self-proclaimed atheist. Begins with her childhood in NewOrleans, when she seriously considered entering a convent. As she grewinto a young adult she delved into concerns about faith, God, and theCatholic Church that led her away from religion. The author finallyreclaimed her Catholic faith in the late 1990s, realizing howmuch she desired to surrender her being, including herwriting talent, to God.

Date added to TBR: Jun 27, 2011
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This is the second book in a series. I got a little excited over the name, apparently.

 

Here are the stats

Previous Total TBR Count: 1896

Updated Total TBR Count: 1951

Total Ditched Today: 6

Total Kept Today: 4

 

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR February 2019

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopsis of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

Continue reading “Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR February 2019”

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR January 2019

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  1. Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  2. Order on ascending date added.
  3. Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  4. Read the synopsis of the books
  5. Decide: keep it or should it go?

 

Continue reading “Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR January 2019”

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR #4

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this

  1. Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  2. Order on ascending date added.
  3. Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  4. Read the synopsis of the books
  5. Decide: keep it or should it go?

Wasted: A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia by Marya Hornbacher

Why would a talented young woman enter into a torrid affair with hunger, drugs, sex, and death? Through five lengthy hospital stays, endless therapy, and the loss of family, friends, jobs, and all sense of what it means to be “normal,” Marya Hornbacher lovingly embraced her anorexia and bulimia — until a particularly horrifying bout with the disease in college put the romance of wasting away to rest forever. A vivid, honest, and emotionally wrenching memoir, Wasted is the story of one woman’s travels to reality’s darker side — and her decision to find her way back on her own terms.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: I just don’t think I want to go down this road. I think it might be a tad too triggering for me.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

 

Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow. Although gifted with a superbly logical brain, for fifteen-year-old Christopher everyday interactions and admonishments have little meaning. He lives on patterns, rules, and a diagram kept in his pocket. Then one day, a neighbor’s dog, Wellington, is killed and his carefully constructive universe is threatened. Christopher sets out to solve the murder in the style of his favourite (logical) detective, Sherlock Holmes. What follows makes for a novel that is funny, poignant and fascinating in its portrayal of a person whose curse and blessing are a mind that perceives the world entirely literally.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: I think I added this because I’d heard great things about this book, but I just don’t see myself picking this one up and reading it. It’s so far from what I usually read.

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Set against the sweeping panoply of Napoleon’s invasion of Russia, War and Peace, presented here in the first new English translation in forty years, is often considered the greatest novel ever written. At its center are Pierre Bezukhov, searching for meaning in his life; cynical Prince Andrei, ennobled by wartime suffering; and Natasha Rostov, whose impulsiveness threatens to destroy her happiness. As Tolstoy follows the changing fortunes of his characters, he crafts a view of humanity that is both epic and intimate and that continues to define fiction at its most resplendent.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I mean, supposedly this is the greatest novel ever written. I feel like I need to read it, even if it’s just something I pick up on occasion.

 

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

The day after they moved in, Coraline went exploring…. In Coraline’s family’s new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors. Thirteen of the doors open and close. The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own. Only it’s different. At first, things seem marvelous in the other flat. The food is better. The toy box is filled with wind-up angels that flutter around the bedroom, books whose pictures writhe and crawl and shimmer, little dinosaur skulls that chatter their teeth. But there’s another mother, and another father, and they want Coraline to stay with them and be their little girl. They want to change her and never let her go. Other children are trapped there as well, lost souls behind the mirrors. Coraline is their only hope of rescue. She will have to fight with all her wits and all the tools she can find if she is to save the lost children, her ordinary life, and herself. Critically acclaimed and award-winning author Neil Gaiman will delight readers with his first novel for all ages.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: I feel like if I’m going to read another Neil Gaiman, I’d rather it be a book in which I haven’t seen the movie already. My girls love this movie, so I’ve seen parts of it many times.

 

Neverwhere (London Below, The World of Neverwhere #1) by Neil Gaiman

Under the streets of London there’s a place most people could never even dream of. A city of monsters and saints, murderers and angels, knights in armour and pale girls in black velvet. This is the city of the people who have fallen between the cracks. Richard Mayhew, a young businessman, is going to find out more than enough about this other London. A single act of kindness catapults him out of his workday existence and into a world that is at once eerily familiar and utterly bizarre. And a strange destiny awaits him down here, beneath his native city: Neverwhere.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: I love Neil’s writing style and story-telling and this one sounds good (and I don’t think there is a movie made about this one … and if there is, I haven’t seen it!)

 

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own. Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family…

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: This one sounds really good, too!

 

Anansi Boys (American Gods) by Neil Gaiman

God is dead. Meet the kids. Fat Charlie Nancy’s normal life ended the moment his father dropped dead on a Florida karaoke stage. Charlie didn’t know his dad was a god. And he never knew he had a brother. Now brother Spider’s on his doorstep — about to make Fat Charlie’s life more interesting… and a lot more dangerous.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep
Comments: Having read American Gods, I kind of feel like I need to read this one, too!

 

Neil Gaiman’s Midnight Days by Neil Gaiman

Gathered from Gaiman’s long career, this omnibus edition includes Gaiman’s early work on John Constantine: Hellblazer and Swamp Thing, as well as a never-before-reprinted Sandman story. An introduction by Gaiman himself is also included.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: I guess I don’t really understand what this book is, exactly? Also, clearly I was on a Gaiman kick when I added these books lol

 

Blueberry Girl by Neil Gaiman

This is a prayer for a blueberry girl . . . A much-loved baby grows into a young woman: brave, adventurous, and lucky. Exploring, traveling, bathed in sunshine, surrounded by the wonders of the world. What every new parent or parent-to-be dreams of for her child, what every girl dreams of for herself. Let me go places that we’ve never been, trust and delight in her youth. Nationally bestselling author Neil Gaiman wrote Blueberry Girl for a friend who was about to become the mother of a little girl. Here, he and beloved illustrator Charles Vess turn this deeply personal wish for a new daughter into a book that celebrates the glory of growing up: a perfect gift for girls embarking on all the journeys of life, for their parents, and for everyone who loves them. Give her all these and a little bit more, gifts for a blueberry girl.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: Meh

 

Preludes & Nocturnes (The Sandman #1) by Neil Gaiman

New York Times best-selling author Neil Gaiman’s transcendent series SANDMAN is often hailed as the definitive Vertigo title and one of the finest achievements in graphic storytelling. Gaiman created an unforgettable tale of the forces that exist beyond life and death by weaving ancient mythology, folklore and fairy tales with his own distinct narrative vision. In PRELUDES & NOCTURNES, an occultist attempting to capture Death to bargain for eternal life traps her younger brother Dream instead. After his 70 year imprisonment and eventual escape, Dream, also known as Morpheus, goes on a quest for his lost objects of power. On his arduous journey Morpheus encounters Lucifer, John Constantine, and an all-powerful madman. This book also includes the story “The Sound of Her Wings,” which introduces us to the pragmatic and perky goth girl Death. Includes issues 1-8 of the original series.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Comments: This sounds OK, but I’m not a huge graphic novel person and while I plan on reading some at some point, I need to limit how many I have on my TBR because I know I just won’t get to them.

 

Here are my current stats

Starting Total TBR Count: 1760
Previous Total TBR Count: 1762
Total Marked TBR ASAP: 134
Updated Total TBR Count:

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR #3

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this
Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
Order on ascending date added.
Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
Read the synopsis of the books
Decide: keep it or should it go?

When Darkness Comes (Guardians of Eternity #1) by Alexandra Ivy

It’s been a hell of a day for Abby Barlow. In just a few hours, she’s survived an explosion, watched her employer die, had a startling dream, and now she finds herself in a seedy Chicago hotel with the sexy, unearthly Dante, a vampire she both desires and fears.

For 341 years, Dante has stood as guardian to The Chalice, a mortal woman chosen to hold back the darkness. A terrible twist of fate has now made Abby that woman. Three hours ago. Dante would have used all his charms to seduce her. Now she is his to protect. And he will do so until his very death.

A terrifying plan has been set in motion, one that will plunge Dante and Abby into an epic battle between good and evil – and a desperate race to save their love…

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep

 

Firelight (Firelight #1) by Sophie Jordan

A hidden truth.
Mortal enemies.
Doomed love.

Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki, a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.

Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will’s dark secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away;if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She’ll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.

Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep

 

My Horizontal Life: A Collection of One-Night Stands by Chelsea Handler

You’ve either done it or know someone who has: the one-night stand, the familiar outcome of a night spent at a bar, sometimes the sole payoff for your friend’s irritating wedding, or the only relief from a disastrous vacation. Often embarrassing and uncomfortable, occasionally outlandish, but most times just a necessary and irresistible evil, the one-night stand is a social rite as old as sex itself and as common as a bar stool.
Enter Chelsea Handler. Gorgeous, sharp, and anything but shy, Chelsea loves men and lots of them. My Horizontal Life chronicles her romp through the different bedrooms of a variety of suitors, a no-holds-barred account of what can happen between a man and a sometimes very intoxicated, outgoing woman during one night of passion. From her short fling with a Vegas stripper to her even shorter dalliance with a well-endowed little person, from her uncomfortable tryst with a cruise ship performer to her misguided rebound with a man who likes to play leather dress-up, Chelsea recalls the highs and lows of her one-night stands with hilarious honesty. Encouraged by her motley collection of friends (aka: her partners in crime) but challenged by her family members (who at times find themselves a surprise part of the encounter), Chelsea hits bottom and bounces back, unafraid to share the gritty details. My Horizontal Life is one guilty pleasure you won’t be ashamed to talk about in the morning.

Date Added to TBR:  Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep

 

Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare

In a time when Shadowhunters are barely winning the fight against the forces of darkness, one battle will change the course of history forever. Welcome to the Infernal Devices trilogy, a stunning and dangerous prequel to the New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments series.

The year is 1878. Tessa Gray descends into London’s dark supernatural underworld in search of her missing brother. She soon discovers that her only allies are the demon-slaying Shadowhunters—including Will and Jem, the mysterious boys she is attracted to. Soon they find themselves up against the Pandemonium Club, a secret organization of vampires, demons, warlocks, and humans. Equipped with a magical army of unstoppable clockwork creatures, the Club is out to rule the British Empire, and only Tessa and her allies can stop them…

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep

 

Shadow Hills (Shadow Hills #1) by Anastasia Hopcus

After her sister Athena’s tragic death, it’s obvious that grief-stricken Persephone “Phe” Archer no longer belongs in Los Angeles. Hoping to make sense of her sister’s sudden demise and the cryptic dreams following it, Phe abandons her bubbly LA life to attend an uptight East Coast preparatory school in Shadow Hills, MA — a school which her sister mysteriously mentioned in her last diary entry before she died.

Once there, Phe quickly realizes that something is deeply amiss in her new town. Not only does Shadow Hills’ history boast an unexplained epidemic that decimated hundreds of its citizens in the 1700s, but its modern townies also seem eerily psychic, with the bizarre ability to bend metal. Even Zach — the gorgeous stranger Phe meets and immediately begins to lust after — seems as if he is hiding something serious. Phe is determined to get to the bottom of it. The longer she stays there, the more she suspects that her sister’s untimely death and her own destiny are intricately linked to those who reside in Shadow Hills.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

 

 

Kapitoil by Teddy Wayne

“Sometimes you do not truly observe something until you study it in reverse,” writes Karim Issar upon arrival to New York City from Qatar in 1999. Fluent in numbers, logic, and business jargon yet often baffled by human connection, the young financial wizard soon creates a computer program named Kapitoil that predicts oil futures and reaps record profits for his company.

At first an introspective loner adrift in New York’s social scenes, he anchors himself to his legendary boss Derek Schrub and Rebecca, a sensitive, disillusioned colleague who may understand him better than he does himself. Her influence, and his father’s disapproval of Karim’s Americanization, cause him to question the moral implications of Kapitoil, moving him toward a decision that will determine his future, his firm’s, and to whom—and where—his loyalties lie.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned by Wells Tower

Viking marauders descend on a much-plundered island, hoping some mayhem will shake off the winter blahs. A man is booted out of his home after his wife discovers that the print of a bare foot on the inside of his car’s windshield doesn’t match her own. Teenage cousins, drugged by summer, meet with a reckoning in the woods. A boy runs off to the carnival after his stepfather bites him in a brawl. Wells Tower’s version of America is touched with the seamy splendor of the dropout, the misfit: failed inventors, boozy dreamers, hapless fathers, wayward sons. With electric prose and savage wit, Everything Ravaged, Everything Burned is a profound new collection of stories.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Too Soon to Say Goodbye by Art Buchwald

When doctors told Art Buchwald that his kidneys were kaput, the renowned humorist declined dialysis and checked into a Washington, D.C., hospice to live out his final days. Months later, “The Man Who Wouldn’t Die” was still there, feeling good, holding court in a nonstop “salon” for his family and dozens of famous friends, and confronting things you usually don’t talk about before you die; he even jokes about them.
Here Buchwald shares not only his remarkable experience–as dozens of old pals from Ethel Kennedy to John Glenn to the Queen of Swaziland join the party–but also his whole wonderful life: his first love, an early brush with death in a foxhole on Eniwetok Atoll, his fourteen champagne years in Paris, fame as a columnist syndicated in hundreds of newspapers, and his incarnation as hospice superstar. Buchwald also shares his sorrows: coping with an absent mother, childhood in a foster home, and separation from his wife, Ann.
He plans his funeral (with a priest, a rabbi, and Billy Graham, to cover all the bases) and strategizes how to land a big obituary in The New York Times (“Make sure no head of state or Nobel Prize winner dies on the same day”). He describes how he and a few of his famous friends finagled cut-rate burial plots on Martha’s Vineyard and how he acquired a Picasso drawing without really trying.

What we have here is a national treasure, the complete Buchwald, uncertain of where the next days or weeks may take him but unfazed by the inevitable, living life to the fullest, with frankness, dignity, and humor.

“[Art Buchwald] has given his friends, their families, and his audiences so many laughs and so much joy through the years that that alone would be an enduring legacy. But Art has never been just about the quick laugh. His humor is a road map to essential truths and insights that might otherwise have eluded us.”
–Tom Brokaw

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Two-Way Street by Lauren Barnholdt

There are two sides to every breakup.

This is Jordan and Courtney, totally in love. Sure, they were an unlikely high school couple. But they clicked; it worked. They’re even going to the same college, and driving cross-country together for orientation.
Then Jordan dumps Courtney — for a girl he met on the Internet.

It’s too late to change plans, so the road trip is on. Courtney’s heartbroken, but figures she can tough it out for a few days. La la la — this is Courtney pretending not to care.

But in a strange twist, Jordan cares. A lot.

Turns out, he’s got a secret or two that he’s not telling Courtney. And it has everything to do with why they broke up, why they can’t get back together, and how, in spite of it all, this couple is destined for each other.

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Keep

 

Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried (Bloom’s Guides) by Harold Bloom

– Comprehensive reading and study guides for some of the world’s most important literary masterpieces
– Concise critical excerpts provide a scholarly overview of each work
– “The Story Behind the Story” details the conditions under which the work was written
– Each book includes a biographical sketch of the author, a descriptive list of characters, an extensive summary and analysis, and an annotated bibliography

Date Added to TBR: Sep 02, 2010
Keep or Ditch? Ditch
Pretty sure this was supposed to be the actual book by Tim O’Brien LOL!

 

 

Here are the stats

Starting Total TBR Count: 1760
Previous Total TBR Count: 1762
Total Marked TBR ASAP: 133
Updated Total TBR Count: 1763

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering my TBR #2

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopsis of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

 

You guys, the Francesca Lia-Block obsession when I joined Goodreads was REAL! Every. Single. Book. is by her this time around!

 


Here are the stats

Starting Total TBR Count: 1760

Previous Total TBR Count: 1772

Total Marked TBR ASAP: 132

Current Total TBR Count: 1762

 


 

 

Ecstasia by Francesca Lia-Block

Siblings Calliope and Rafe, along with Dionisio and Paul, are Ecstasia—the most popular band in Elysia, a city of jewels and feathers, of magic and music, where the only crime is growing old. Then Calliope’s visions take her to Under, where the Old Ones go to die, and where her parents had vanished long ago. Rafe joins her there, in search of the Doctor, who can bring back the dead to ease their loved ones’ broken hearts. And that is when rapture turns to nightmare.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

 

Primavera by Francesca Lia-Block

From the very moment she was born, Primavera’s songs made water flow and flowers blossom. She brought new life to the desert where her family lives. But even in Paradise there are dreams that cannot be fulfilled. Primavera is in love with a man who can never be hers–so when a handsome stranger offers her the gift of a horse-headed motorcycle, Primavera leaves home in search of the magical city of Elysia. But in Elysia, Primavera discovers that she has left behind everything she truly needs, everyone she truly cares about–and, if the city has its way, she will never find her way back home.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Nymph by Francesca Lia-Block

An interconnected series of stories, NYMPH is a special journey through the lives and loves of characters like Plum, a Crayon-haired girl who has a gift: if she makes love with a person, that person will then meet their true love, or Tom, a burned out surfer whose luck changes when he is rescued by a mysterious, wheelchair-bound woman, or Sylvie, a chronically depressed poet who finds beauty in unexpected places. Block’s erotic explorations of these smoky, kaleidoscopic fables are anything but conventional; these are stories of love, loss, and life, about the healing power of sex and bonding.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Quakeland by Francesca Lia-Block

After enduring from afar a seemingly endless series of outside worldwide disasters–including 9/11 and the Asian tsunami–while living in earthquake-prone Los Angeles, a bereft Katrina experiences deep inner longings for some sense of permanence, meaning, and intimacy. A pre-school teacher contemplating the unsettling challenges of her mid-life, she finds solace in the company of her dear friend, Grace, and conflict in the arms of Jasper, a narcissistic yoga instructor.

In this intertwining series of emotionally charged stories, wistful characters weave together a dance of joy and sorrow, gain and loss, dissonance and harmony.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Pretty Dead by Francesca Lia-Block

People pity me, but mostly they feel envy. I have all the luxury and freedom a girl my age could want.

Something is happening to Charlotte Emerson. Like the fires that are ravaging the hills of Los Angeles, it consumes her from the inside out. But whether it is her eternal loneliness, the memory of her brother, the return of her first love, or the brooding, magnetic Jared—she cannot say. What if it’s something more . . .

Something to do with the sudden tear in her perfect nails. The heat she feels when she’s with Jared. The blood rushing once again to her cheeks and throughout her veins.

For Charlotte is a vampire, witness to almost a century’s worth of death and destruction. But not since she was a human girl has mortality touched her.

In what way will you be transformed?

Until now.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

 

Blood Roses by Francesca Lia-Block

What shall we do, all of us?

All of us passionate girls who fear crushing the boys we love with our mouths like caverns of teeth, our mushrooming brains, our watermelon hearts?

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

 

Topmodel by Francesca Lia-Block

Once upon a time, in the bubble-gum-snapping, glitter polish-wearing, lip-gloss-applying San Fernando Valley, a gentle girl named Barbie met a feisty fairy named Mab: “Maybe Mab was real. Maybe there really are girls the size of pinkies with hair the color of the darkest red oleander blossoms and skin like the greenish-white underbellies of calla lilies…. But it doesn’t matter if Mab is real or imagined, Barbie thought, as long as I can see her.” Mab, with her crabby commentary and no-holds-barred opinions, gives Barbie the strength she needs to face the horrors casting a shadow over her life in sunny, shimmering California. How else could Barbie survive her over-perfumed, over-tanned, overbearing stage mother, dragging her daughter to modeling agencies in the gold-plated hope of reliving her younger days as a beauty queen? Or the “cadaver-pale skin” and “fleshy mouth” of Hamilton Waverly, the “crocodile pedophile” photographer who makes Barbie feel “like the doll she had been named for, without even a hole where her mouth was supposed to be”? Mab glimmers and gabs by Barbie’s side throughout her teen years as she becomes a successful fashion model, falls in love, and endures all the troubles that come along for the ride–in addition to facing the black secret of her past.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Ruby by Francesca Lia-Block

After growing up in an abusive family, Ruby escapes to Los Angeles and learns of her soulmate — Orion — a British actor. She travels to England, where she works at a potions and herbs shop, and through a series of coincidental circumstances, ends up nursing Orion back to health without confessing that she has been on a quest to find him all along. But just when she thinks her dream is becoming a reality, Ruby is stopped in her tracks by the violent demons of her past. Only by facing the darkness together can she and Orion finally fulfill their destiny.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

Psyche in a Dress by Francesca Lia-Block

But this is what I could not give up: I could not give up myself.

Psyche has known Love–scented with jasmine and tasting of fresh oranges. Yet he is fleeting and fragile, lost to her too quickly. Punished by self-doubt, Psyche yearns to be transformed, like the beautiful and brutal figures in the myths her lover once spoke of. Attempting to uncover beauty in the darkness, she is challenged, tested, and changed by the gods and demons who tempt her. Her faith must be found again, for if she is to love, she must never look back.

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

 

 

The Frenzy by Francesca Lia-Block

Liv has a secret.

Something happened to her when she was thirteen. Something that changed everything. Liv knows she doesn’t belong anymore—not in her own skin, not in her family . . . not anywhere. The only time she truly feels like herself is when she’s with her boyfriend, Corey, and in the woods that surround her town.

But in the woods, a mysterious woman watches Liv. In the woods, a pack of wild boys lurks. In the woods, Liv learns about the curse that will haunt her forever. The curse that caused the frenzy four years ago. And that may cause it again, all too soon.

While Corey and Liv’s love binds them together, Liv’s dark secret threatens to tear them apart as she struggles to understand who—or what—she really is. And by the light of the full moon, the most dangerous secrets bare their claws. . .

Keep or Ditch? Ditch

Bye-Bye Books: Decluttering My TBR #1

This post was inspired by Ally’s series (which was inspired by Lia at Lost in a Story).

It works like this:
Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
Order on ascending date added.
Take the first 5 (or 10 (or even more!) if you’re feeling adventurous) books
Read the synopsis of the books
Decide: keep it or should it go?

I’ve been avoiding doing anything like this for awhile because, while I’m great at getting rid of things around the house and in most areas of my life, getting rid of books – even if it is just digitally – causes so much metaphorical pain LOL!

But, like Ally said, I don’t want to miss any great books and this may actually remind me of books that I need to bump up to the TBR ASAP list (which might be good or bad… we shall see.)


Here are the stats

Declutter Post Number: 1

Starting Total TBR Count: 1760

Current Total TBR Count: 1760

Total Marked TBR ASAP: #

Ending Total TBR Count: #


Midnight Sun (Twilight #1.5) by Stephenie Meyer

Midnight Sun is the much anticipated retelling of Twilight from Edward Cullen’s perspective. An unedited partial draft was illegally leaked onto the internet in 2008; consequently, author Stephenie Meyer put the project on indefinite hold.

So, this is why we clean out our TBR. Right here. Because people like me joined Goodreads almost a decade ago and things like this were one of the first books added to my TBR. Sigh.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: DITCH

 

Tell-All by Chuck Palahniuk

Soaked, nay, marinated in the world of vintage Hollywood, Tell-All is a Sunset Boulevard–inflected homage to Old Hollywood when Bette Davis and Joan Crawford ruled the roost; a veritable Tourette’s syndrome of rat-tat-tat name-dropping, from the A-list to the Z-list; and a merciless send-up of Lillian Hellman’s habit of butchering the truth that will have Mary McCarthy cheering from the beyond.

Our Thelma Ritter–ish narrator is Hazie Coogan, who for decades has tended to the outsized needs of Katherine “Miss Kathie” Kenton—veteran of multiple marriages, career comebacks, and cosmetic surgeries. But danger arrives with gentleman caller Webster Carlton Westward III, who worms his way into Miss Kathie’s heart (and boudoir). Hazie discovers that this bounder has already written a celebrity tell-all memoir foretelling Miss Kathie’s death in a forthcoming Lillian Hellman–penned musical extravaganza; as the body count mounts, Hazie must execute a plan to save Katherine Kenton for her fans—and for posterity.

I was OBSESSED with Chuck P back in the day. It’s been awhile since I’ve read any of his books and unless I go through another phase, I don’t see me going out of my way to purchase anything by him anytime soon.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: DITCH

 

Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk

“Begins here first account of operative me, agent number 67 on arrival Midwestern American airport greater _____ area. Flight _____. Date _____. Priority mission top success to complete. Code name: Operation Havoc.”

Thus speaks Pygmy, one of a handful of young adults from a totalitarian state sent to the United States, disguised as exchange students, to live with typical American families and blend in, all the while planning an unspecified act of massive terrorism. Palahniuk depicts Midwestern life through the eyes of this thoroughly indoctrinated little killer, who hates us with a passion, in this cunning double-edged satire of an American xenophobia that might, in fact, be completely justified. For Pygmy and his fellow operatives are cooking up something big, something truly awful, that will bring this big dumb country and its fat dumb inhabitants to their knees.

It’s a comedy. And a romance.

See above commentary.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: DITCH

 

Snuff by Chuck Palahniuk

“Cassie Wright, porn priestess, intends to cap her legendary career by breaking the world record for serial fornication. On camera. With six hundred men. Snuff unfolds from the perspectives of Mr. 72, Mr. 137, and Mr. 600, who await their turn on camera in a very crowded green room. This wild, lethally funny, and thoroughly researched novel brings the huge yet underacknowledged presence of pornography in contemporary life into the realm of literary fiction at last. Who else but Chuck Palahniuk would dare do such a thing? Who else could do it so well, so unflinchingly, and with such an incendiary (you might say) climax?

I actually own this one, it’s on my bookshelf, so I’ll keep this one on here.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: Keep

 

Rant by Chuck Palahniuk

Buster “Rant” Casey just may be the most efficient serial killer of our time. A high school rebel, Rant Casey escapes from his small town home for the big city where he becomes the leader of an urban demolition derby called Party Crashing. Rant Casey will die a spectacular highway death, after which his friends gather the testimony needed to build an oral history of his short, violent life.

I own this one, too!

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: Keep

 

Immortal: Love Stories with Bite by P.C. Cast

Seven of today’s most popular YA vampire and contemporary fantasy authors offer new short stories that prove that when you’re immortal, true love really is forever.

I added this back when I was in love with PC Cast, but I’m kind of meh about her books now.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: Ditch

 

Infinity by Sarah Dessen

Ever felt as if your life is just going round in circles? Sarah Dessen’s thought-provoking short story about moving on will resonate with teens everywhere.

First of all, what is this synopsis?! Second, I thought I’d read all of SD’s books except for the latest one… hmm…

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: Keep

 

Echo by Francesca Lia Block

Francesca Lia Block has charmed and amazed young audiences with tales of the mystical and ethereal. This outstanding story is no different. Following the life of Echo, an L.A. baby born to an artistic dad and a mom who’s an angel, this enthralling story offers more than fairy dust and the supernatural. It tells the tale of a girl who feels doomed to be less than angelic, at least in comparison with her mother. Mom’s startling beauty and aura enchant all who meet her, and Echo can never keep up. Desperate to be loved as much, and maybe find her own identity, she escapes to the boys in her life. Ultimately, she must rely on herself for the strength to survive.

Simple text ands story lines do not appeal to Block, who weaves a tale with amazing grace and the flowing energy of a true genius. Images of vampires, ghosts, and fairies fill these pages, daring the reader to believe. Told from the point of view of Echo and the key players in her life, the story imparts a dreamlike quality to Echo’s life. This a novel layered with pain beauty, and triumph, all which will appeal to young readers.

This one is on my bookshelf. I love FLB and her unique writing style.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/30/2010

Keep or Ditch: Keep

 

Wasteland by Francesca Lia Block

An exquisite novel about the consequences of who we choose to love.

Lex and his sister, Marina, are inseparable. The air they share has always been light and boundless, but suddenly it’s weighted down. And now Lex is gone. When the one relationship that cradled her turns out to shatter her sense of self, Marina needs her friend West to help put the pieces back together. But Marina won’t feel truly complete until she faces the past that is haunting her.

Highly acclaimed and award-winning author Francesca Lia Block tells the tale of a brother and sister whose loving relationship is too intense for them to bear. With the sensitivity and refinement that Block is known for, she manages to weave together her characters and their lives into this beautiful and thought-provoking tale.

It pains me to take any FLB books off my TBR, but I just don’t see myself picking this over any others.

Date Added to Goodreads: 8/29/2010

Keep or Ditch: Ditch