TBR & Goals

TBR Cleaning + Try A Chapter Time!

I’m not in my third year of high school anymore. I currently can’t read 20 books in a month, I don’t see that happening again anytime soon, and I want to keep that in mind. I want to be honest with myself.

Which means, I want to reduce my TBR, which is currently more than 170 books.


This is a category I struggle to get to. The year gap between a book and its sequel often makes me forget the details that make reading the sequel enjoyable, which is why I try to reread the first book before getting into them… but I’m a very slow rereader, and I’m not going to dedicate so much time to a book that wasn’t a favorite. So, the “being honest with myself” part one has to be “get rid of some sequels“.

It’s just that – I don’t want to read them, but I feel weird recommending the first book, even when I loved it, when I consciously decide not to finish the series. I need to get over this.

Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao – this is a sequel of a book I gave four stars to, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns. However, it follows a character I’m not as interested into, and the main character was what made me love the first one. I’m going to remove this for now, and let Song of the Crimson Flower (an unrelated book by Julie C. Dao I have an ARC of) be the book that will make me decide if I like this author’s books even when they’re not about villains.

The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden – I loved the first book, but the more I think about it, the more I dislike the second one. However, I don’t remember nearly enough about it to get into the third. I think I have to admit to myself that this isn’t happening, since I have so many books on my TBR I actually want to read instead of rereading The Girl in the Tower. Removed, even though it makes me sad

All the Wandering Light by Heather Fawcett – I might have read this, hadn’t this come out a year after the first one, when I had already lost interest and forgotten everything about the first. I skimmed a preview, and I really don’t care – but I’m glad to see that a certain something that bothered me about the ending of book one wasn’t there! That’s all the closure I need. Removed.

Try A Chapter Time!

A Matter of Oaths by Helen S. Wrightremove
On one hand, I kind of wanted to read the queer space opera novel that came out in 1988 (!). On the other hand, I’ve tried this first chapter two times already and it’s not working, I don’t think I like the writing. (Also, I’m glad it’s 2019 and we don’t open books with two chapters of non-stop infodumps anymore.)

How It Feels to Float by Elena Fox – keep for now
I wasn’t sure about the writing at first, since it’s kind of stream-of-consciunsness-like and that doesn’t always work for me, but I think it could. I’m kind of hesitant because of it but I’ll give this book more of a chance in the future.

This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story by Kheryn Callenderremove
I’ve been on the fence about this one for a long time, since it’s a story about a queer black boy written by a queer black person, but all the people I trust who have read it rated it from one to three stars, and I… I have a lot of contemporaries on my TBR, I’m never going to get to this realistically. Or that’s what I try to tell myself – the most common complaint is the casual cheating, which might not be a bookish dealbreaker for me. However, while I can’t claim to understand romantic jealousy, it’s still characters breaking other people’s trust and that could be not fun to read anyway?

Not Even Bones by Rebecca Schaeffer – remove
The promise of gray morality almost made me keep it. Almost. It’s just… the first chapters are so boring. You can only go on with “and by the way, did I tell you my main character likes to dissect bodies??” so much before I get bored. The writing is also boring. The cover is more boring than both the writing and the content. I’m tired.

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff – remove
I said many times that I was going to read this, and it has been recommended to me by… so many people? However, the impression I always get from Jay Kristoff’s writing is one of someone who is desperately trying to be edgy, and this excerpt was no exception. Some say that you get used to the writing, and I kind of want to read this because there’s f/f content in the sequel, but seriously, there are so many f/f books on my TBR that aren’t written by someone whose writing voice I can’t stand.
(Also, it’s a fake!Italy setting. No thank you.)

The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt – remove
I had this on my TBR because queer sci-fi, but I can already tell it’s not going to be my kind of book – it’s that kind of space opera with aliens I tend to hate. Then I saw the reviews and they’re comparing this to The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, so. Definitely not reading this one.

Stats Right Now

After removing these books + some novels that sound good but will come out in 2022 (I… don’t need to keep them on my TBR right now), I have a TBR of 154 books. Of these, more than 30 won’t come out until 2020 or later, and less than 70 are out right now. Not bad!

Do you struggle with continuing series too?

10 thoughts on “TBR Cleaning + Try A Chapter Time!

  1. I definitely struggle with continuing series because waiting for the next book to come out sometimes makes me lose interest, or I’m not in the mood to read the sequel when it comes out, and often I forget everything in the previous book so have to read the previous book again. I am relieved to hear I am not the only book blogger who can also no longer read 20 books in a month.

    I also really liked Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, but honestly could have done without the sequel. Jade just wasn’t as interesting a character, imo, but I am excited for Julie Dao’s next book as well. I hope you enjoy it also!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Waiting often makes me lose interest too, and I’d almost always rather try something new instead by the time the sequel comes around, if it’s not a favorite series.

      I hope Song of the Crimson Flower won’t disappoint either of us!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I definitley struggle with continuing series! A big part of it is how much I forget between books, but I’ve also noticed that I usually rate sequels lower than the first book, so I’m starting to think I just don’t like them very much.
    You now how much I love and adore The Winter of the Witch, so I kinda want to throw it at you and yell READ THE BOOK. But I get it. I still haven’t read All the Wandering Light even though loved Even the Darkest Stars and I just finished The Shadowglass, but found it so disappointing. Finishing series isn’t always necessary. In fact turning perfectly good standalones into series isn’t always necessary. Someone please tell authors that, cause I don’t think they know.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “In fact turning perfectly good standalones into series isn’t always necessary. Someone please tell authors that, cause I don’t think they know.” = THIS
      There are so many books that were perfect as standalones and didn’t need a (…downhill) continuation. Also, I’d like to tell authors/publishing that not every popular series needs a spin-off.

      And the things I’ve heard about The Shadowglass are making me think that I’ll probably won’t finish The Bone Witch either.


  3. I am so impressed with your tiny TBR! Mine is currently 2,009 books which…makes it pretty much meaningless at this point lmao. And this is after I went through and got rid of a whole bunch of books!

    I totally relate re: sequels! I struggle so much to finish series. It doesn’t help that my memory is atrocious, and usually I can barely remember the overall plot of a book a year later, much less the little details that make a sequel enjoyable!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ….2009? That’s a lot! I don’t think mine has ever been higher than 300, I like to keep only books I could realistically see myself reading at the moment on it.

      I usually don’t remember that much either, which is why I almost always choose to reread – but I’m such a slow rereader that I can do that only with a few series a year.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I definitely want to try How It Feels to Float too because the mental health rep sounds really really great, but I’m not really in the mood for stream of consciousness right now, so maybe at some other point! And I don’t think you’re missing out on much by not reading Nevernight. I finished it last week and everything was just…underwhelming? And Kristoff’s writing IS kind of over the top. The ONLY reason I’m considering the sequel is because of the possible friends-to-enemies-to-lovers f/f plotline. 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s good to know! The only reason I wanted to read Nevernight to begin with is that storyline, but I don’t think I’ll read it anyway – I don’t know what it is about his writing, I usually like “over-the-top” in writing, but not his kind of it…


  5. Every time I see someone remove “nevernight” I feel like letting out a small evil laugh because it’s one of those books that’s so much recommended, and that I should on paper like with a fierce female protagonist, but I just hate it so so much (which is rare). It made me feel icky reading it and read later reviews of people pointing out all it’s problems and agreed- there’s so many books out there in general and I completely agree that if one doesn’t feel like it, especially after trying a chapter, why don’t pick up a hopefully better book

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know the feeling, I’m get like that too with some hyped books I hate

      and yes, I think I get what you mean with the icky feeling. The whole thing felt weird and I think that’s how I would have ended up feeling too

      Liked by 1 person

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