Hello Hello! How are you all?

I’m doing something different today! I’ve met some wonderful friends in a blogging group on Twitter, and this weekend, Candyce from The Book Dutchesses posted her Down the TBR Hole #25. I was really intrigued and I’ve decided to give it a go after the lovely Fiona over at Fi’s Bibliophiles did it too!

I thought this post would be such a good idea to try to break through my Goodreads TBR “bunker” and try to concentrate on the books I really want to read. When I first found Goodreads when I was a teenager, I was so enthralled by the whole thing that I ended up adding each and every book recommended to my “to read shelf”, hence, over 5,000 books on my TBR shelf today… Please don’t judge! So I definitely need something like this to find the rare pearls and chuck away all the boring rocks shall we say!

The Down the TBR Hole was originally created by Lost in a Story (currently unavailable) and these are the steps to follow:

  • GO TO YOUR GOODREADS TO-READ SHELF.
  • ORDER ON ASCENDING DATE ADDED.
  • TAKE THE FIRST 5 (OR 10 OR 15 OR 20, IF YOU’RE FEELING ADVENTUROUS) BOOKS.
  • READ THE SYNOPSES OF THE BOOKS.
  • DECIDE: KEEP IT OR SHOULD IT GO?
  • KEEP TRACK OF WHERE YOU LEFT OFF SO YOU CAN PICK UP THERE LATER

On my TBR Goodreads shelf, I’m ashamed to say that I have a total of 5344 books, so let’s get that number down before I decide to wipe the whole thing clean and start again, you never know, there might be a really good book hiding in there somewhere, I just need to find it. Please bring me coffee and biscuits!

Most of the books on my Goodreads Want to Read shelf are books I’ve been recommended and haven’t gotten around to yet, or sequels in series I started ages ago and, as you have already guessed, haven’t gotten around to yet. I think for each of these posts I’m going to work with 20 books because it’ll hopefully get some of this stuff shifted! If I’ve got a ridiculous number of sequels for the same series and have already either kept or removed the first/second/third, I’ll go ahead and remove/keep the others directly.

Please, wish me luck, this is going to be LONG. Let’s see how many I can remove if any!

GOODREADS “WANT TO READ” SHELF

The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre
The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things

This is one of the books that I added without even looking at the synopsis or the cover/title, I think I must have read a book similar and clicked on “Readers also liked” and gone on a Want to Read button spree. The synopsis sounds intriguing, but I’ve had it on my TBR for 6 years, and haven’t heard it mentioned once I don’t think, so I think I’m going to remove it.

REMOVE

Me, Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

I’ve had this book on my TBR since I fell in love with reading when I was about 12 years old I think. I’ve never gotten to it, but, my mum bought it for me for my birthday last month, so I’m keeping it and hopefully, I can get to it soon!

KEEP

Half Bad (The Half Bad Trilogy #1) by Sally Green
Half Bad (The Half Bad Trilogy, #1)

If you know me, you know that the reason this is on my TBR is because of the word “witch” in the synopsis! I’ve read this synopsis so many times, but have never picked it up, but I do want to give it a chance, so I’m keeping this one, but I’ll remove the other books in the series for now in case I don’t like and then I won’t have to go purge the TBR shelf again!

KEEP

The Anatomy of Being by Shinji Moon
The Anatomy of Being

I have to admit, I have no idea what this one is about, or even why it is on my TBR, I’m sure it’s another “blind add to “want to read” list” moment I had. I have to say that I generally struggle with poetry, so I think I’ll take this off for now, until either someone recommends it to me or I stumble upon it again because I want to start reading more poetry, but preferably books I’ve heard people talking about!

REMOVE

Written in Red (The Others #1) by Anne Bishop
Written in Red (The Others, #1)

I’m sure this was another one of those books I added without reading the synopsis, but this is quite intriguing to me! Last year I added it to my list of series I wanted to start in my bullet journal, so I think I’m going to give it a shot. There are loads of books in this series so I’m removing all of the others except the first one and will add them later if I decide to continue.

KEEP

Lord of the Flies by William Golding
Lord of the Flies

I don’t think I need to wonder for ten minutes about this one! It’s a classic and this year I’ve decided to try to read more classics, and it happens to be part of my top 20 classics I want to read, so I’m going to give it a shot, and hopefully, it won’t disappoint!

KEEP

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Heart of Darkness

I don’t really know about this one, it is on my classics list, but the synopsis doesn’t do anything for me. Last year, we read and analysed an extract in literature class, and the only thing I can remember is something to do with a boat. I might add it again later, but right now it’s not making me want to read it.

REMOVE

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
One Hundred Years of Solitude

I’ve wanted to read a book by this author for quite a while now, but I honestly don’t know where to start and the synopsis is just not grabbing me, so I think that this one will have to go too! Oopsy, sorry to all the classics I’m throwing out the window!

REMOVE

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Of Mice and Men

This one is actually on my TBR for a funny reason. I used to really like the band called Of Mice & Men, so what did I do, I added the book to my TBR even though there is no relation between the two! My music tastes have changed, and I actually no longer find the synopsis for this book appealing, so I think it’s going to be removed too.

REMOVE

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
A Tale of Two Cities

Can you see a theme here? 5 years ago it would seem I wanted to read all the classics… However, this one, I like! The context is one that really interests me, the Reign of Terror around the time of the French Revolution, and I’ve also chosen this book for the prompt “A book with a great first line” for my 2020 Popsugar Reading Challenge, so this one is staying on the list.

KEEP

Atonement by Ian McEwan
Atonement

This one I added because I saw the film and absolutely adored it! The synopsis does intrigue me and I know I already like the story, however, after 5 years I still haven’t picked it up and I still remember the film vividly, so I don’t really feel the need to actually read this one, I might one day, but right now I feel like it would just be a waste of time, and I haven’t heard anyone speak about it for a very long time.

REMOVE

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
War and Peace

Back on the classics bandwagon we go, it would seem. The synopsis doesn’t really grab me, but I do know that I’ve wanted to read it for what seems like eons, and the reviews and ratings on Goodreads are quite high. I think for this one I might try to find it cheap on Kindle and then if I like it I’ll buy a paperback version because this is a very, very, very, very long one, but I do want to give it a chance. Feel free to tell me I’m crazy.

KEEP

Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Love in the Time of Cholera

Another annoying thing I do on Goodreads is to add every single book by an author I’ve read or want to read so I end up with 20 books by a person I’ll probably never get to. I read the synopsis and although my head goes “ooh”, at the same time I think, “nah”, so I think this one will have to go for the time being, I might add it one day if I keep hearing about it or it’s recommended to me, but right now it’s gathering dust on the virtual bookshelves.

REMOVE

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Memoirs of a Geisha

I’ve wanted to read this one for so, so long and this year, I’ve finally decided to put it on my TBR as part of the Popsugar Reading Challenge, so hopefully, I’ll finally be able to read it in 2020!

KEEP

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet

Throughout my entire secondary school education, I did drama, and from the minute I started, I’ve wanted to read William Shakespeare. My two last years of drama studies involved us playing Macbeth and I really enjoyed it, so even though last year I read King Richard III and didn’t like it, I want to give Romeo and Juliet a chance!

KEEP

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
Water for Elephants

I never actually saw the film, but as soon as I found out that it was a book I added it to my TBR, and I have to say that the synopsis does make me want to read it, so I’m willing to leave it on my TBR for a little while longer and hopefully, I can get to this one soon!

KEEP

Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Life of Pi

I saw the film a very long time ago and the synopsis sounds exactly like what I saw, it didn’t really stay with me, I don’t know how it ended although I’m sure I watched it until the end, and I don’t really think I want to bother with the book, so this one is going to have to go!

REMOVE

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Another classic I added for the sake of it, I honestly don’t know why I do this to myself, I love making lists and adding books and a million other things to unending lists and then I end up with 5000 things to sort through. After reading the synopsis, this sounds like a bit of a faff and one of those mad books that only a few people understand, (sorry if you like this one, lol) so I think I’m going to get rid of this one.

REMOVE

The Pillars of the Earth (Kingsbridge #1) by Ken Follett
The Pillars of the Earth (Kingsbridge, #1)

I remember that my mum recommended this book to me, actually, she just recommended Ken Follett in general, so I obviously added every single one of his books to my shelves. But this synopsis sounds really, really interesting, I adore historical fiction and this seems right up my alley, it’s also giving me some Da Vinci Code vibes so I’m expecting to really like this one. I’m going to remove the other books in the series, and any other book I have by him on my shelves, and only add them later if I decide to continue or like his writing style and want to read more from him. I honestly can’t believe how many Ken Follett books I had added to the “Want to Read” shelf, no wonder it was out of control.

KEEP

The Road by Cormac McCarthy
The Road

I’d forgotten what this book was about until I started reading the synopsis and then didn’t need to anymore. This book sounds really cool and I’m definitely keeping it on my list!

KEEP

Out of 20 books, I got rid of 9 and after removing the sequels and other books by the same authors, I’m now down to 5317, which I feel is quite good for a first little clean-out. I obviously have a long way to go but my TBR shelf is feeling a little less overwhelming than it did at the start of the evening! I really enjoyed doing this because I feel like I’m closer to finding some really good books and not wasting my time with average ones! I’m currently on #11 on my “Want to Read” shelf.

Hopefully, in the coming weeks, I’ll be able to do more posts like this and by the end of the year I should be down to an “ultimate” TBR and then I can finally focus on some awesome books! Tell me about books that have been gathering dust on your shelves!

That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed reading this post, see you soon,

Ellie xx

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