Down the TBR Hole #21

Welcome folks to the twenty first round of Down the TBR Hole! As I mentioned in my last round of DtTH (nope, that acronym isn’t particularly attractive, is it?), this little project has been a great way of weening down my TBR over the past year so I’ve decided to keep it up and make it a semi-regular feature in order to spring clean my TBR aka be realistic about what books I aspire to read and what books I actually will read.

For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, check out the previous posts via the tag or check out Lia at Lost in a Story who is the creator of this wonderful meme/project.

I’m trying to make this a regular feature of my blogging schedule because it’s good to regularly reevaluate if/why you want to read a book – that way you don’t come back to your TBR years later and have no clue why a title piqued your interest in the first place. I’ve also added a summary of results bit at the bottom of each round so I can track how many books I’ve kept and ditched from my TBR shelf in each round and overall.

Just a reminder of how this works:

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

Outside of doing these posts semi-regularly I have also been culling my TBR list at random points when I’m bored – all of this is good in terms of getting my TBR to a reasonable amount of books but it also means that these posts are getting harder for me to do as I’m beginning to really agonise over whether to ditch or keep books on there. Not that any of this is a bad thing! Let’s get going on the 10 books under scrutiny today…

1. The Iliad by Homer

Why is it there? To be honest, I’m a little bit ashamed I’ve never actually properly read The Iliad or The Odyssey, especially considering how interested I used to be in Ancient Greece and all the history and myths and legends when I was younger. I know the plots of both The Iliad and The Odyssey and I’ve definitely consumed a lot of media (TV, film, books) about those two tales, but I’ve never properly read the source material. Anyone who is knowledgeable about these things, is there a particular critical edition of this book that you’d advise I acquire?
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Keep

2. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Why is it there? It feels like everyone and their mothers has read this book already. I am not one of those people. I also have not yet read (though I do own) Celeste Ng’s second novel, Little Fires, but I’m SUPER keen to get to that soon. Pretty much everyone says this is great, so I need to get to this, simple as.
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Keep

3. The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason

Why is it there? I’m pretty sure I’ve actually read most of this book… but then I must have put it down for some reason. It’s the first in a series of books which detail the adventures of “Stoker and Holmes”, Evaline Stoker (Bram Stoker’s sister) and Mina Holmes (the niece of Sherlock Holmes) as they team up to solve maybe supernatural mysteries. It’s meta and ridiculous and I remember enjoying it for the romp that it was i.e. it’s not particularly clever or insightful but it’s fun, ok!
Do I own it? Yes
Verdict? Keep

4. The Monster’s Wife by Kate Horsley

Why is it there? As far as I remember, this is a “sequel” to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, told from the POV of the bride which Victor Frankenstein creates for his creature. I think the reason I first came to hear about this book was because its author wrote something at some point for the literary magazine called Cake which was produced at the university I studied at, Lancaster University. That’s about as much of the connection as I remember, and I was interested in this story at the time but now… ? Well, I’d clearly forgotten all about it, eek!
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Ditch

5. The Glass Sentence by S.E. Grove

Why is it there? Reagan from Perusse Project talked so much about this book a few years ago and I thought the concept of “a world changed by the Great Disruption of 1799, when all the continents were flung into different time periods” sounds AMAZING. I am a bit of a sucker for anything to do with ships and cartography (see also: The Girl from Everywhere) so I’m sure I’ll enjoy this when I finally get around to it.
Do I own it? Yes
Verdict? Keep

6. The Resurrectionist by James Bradley

Why is it there? I know nothing about this book and I don’t even know why or when I added this to my TBR. Likely I saw it in a used book shop, thought it sounded vaguely interesting, so I added it onto my Goodreads then and promptly forgot it existed. It sounds about right. Now I look into the book, it has pretty uniformly poor reviews on Goodreads so… that many people can’t be wrong, surely?
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Ditch

7. Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Why is it there? As you’ll be sick of hearing by this point, this book did the rounds on Booktube a while back and I added it to my TBR then because it sounded decent and I figured I’d eventually get to it. Skip forward a few years and I still haven’t… so clearly I was never really that interested in it because I always forget about this book until someone mentions its name and then I remember that, once upon a time, it was on my TBR. I think that’s a sure sign that I need to admit I’m not really going to read this.
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Ditch 

8. The Waking Engine by David Edison

Why is it there? I haven’t really heard a lot of people talking about this one and a cursory look on Goodreads shows that it has (at best) mixed reviews from most of the folks on there. As it is, I saw Liz of Lizloveslit fame talk about it what must be years ago at this point and I added it to my TBR because I thought it sounded unique and interesting. Apparently it’s ambitious and a little confusing though, which is probably why I haven’t been brave enough to even go about acquiring this. One day though, one day I will at least try it.
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Keep

9. The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente

Why is it there? I own the first two books in this series and yet I have never even thought about picking them up. I think it’s because the hype for this series very much died down on Booktube and I haven’t heard anyone allude to this series in aaages. however, I still want to give it a fair chance because I think I could love this. Then again, I could also hate this… but I at least need to try it first to see.
Do I own it? Yes
Verdict? Keep

10. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

Why is it there? I don’t know why I’m still holding onto this delusion that one of these days I will actually read this book. This book is too much of a Project Book, it’s a big commitment because it’s long and weirdly formatted and confusing and apparently makes you solve riddles and stuff whilst you’re reading it? I’m just not sure I’m up for investing that much time and effort into a book which I’m not even sure I’m actually going to enjoy. It’s impressive, I’m not going to deny that, but I can say that even just knowing the concept of it, I don’t need to waste hours on it to decide that.
Do I own it? No
Verdict? Ditch


This round:
Kept – 6
Ditched – 4

Overall:
Kept – 111
Ditched – 99

That’s all folks for the twenty-first round of my Down the TBR Hole project. I’m struggling more and more nowadays to ditch books but my TBR currently stands at 636 books. Although that still seems an insurmountable number, it’s not too bad considering how many books were on there before I started doing this project and slowly whittling that number down. I think my future just must hold a lot of reading for me to hope to get to all of these books!

But have I made a terrible mistake in ditching some of these titles? Or have I kept some that really aren’t worth my time? Let me know in the comments below!


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6 thoughts on “Down the TBR Hole #21

  1. Jessie @ Dwell in Possibility 31/05/2018 / 23:17

    Everything I Never Told You definitely lives up to all the hype. I was blown away by it and still find myself thinking about the characters. Code Name Verity is such a great and memorable read as well, but I can totally understand your reasons for culling it from your TBR list.

    Like

    • Emma 01/06/2018 / 10:18

      Oo exciting, I’m glad to hear it’s worthwhile! Tbh it doesn’t sound like anything I’ve read before considering I mostly read fantasy nowadays, so I’m really looking forward to getting to it. :)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ellie 30/05/2018 / 19:37

    Everything I’ve Never Told You is so good! I’m glad that’s staying on your list, and hope you enjoy it when you get round to it.

    Like

    • Emma 01/06/2018 / 10:19

      Aah this is so good to hear, thanks – two people have commented this now so I know it must be a good one!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ellie 04/06/2018 / 06:58

        Awesome – I hope you enjoy it whenever you get round to it

        Like

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