• The TBR

    October 2019 TBR

    *Hello again friends! It’s finally the next best month of the year! October is one of my favorite months because it’s finally FALL and crunchy leaves, bonfires, and cozy clothes. If I could I’d live in black leggings and an oversized sweater all year. Anyway, grab your favorite drink and read on to see what books I plan to read this month.

    In this post I discuss book buying habits and why holding onto books isn't always healthy. I also list my October tbr! It's shaping up to be a great reading month.

    Starting October fresh.

    Last month I unhauled a lot of books. Like 39 of them. I was having a great conversation with a friend on Instagram and she gave me some of the best book advice ever! What I’m going to tell you might just blow your mind. Or, if you already do this shame on you for not sharing already!

    My friend told me that she knows roughly how many books she reads per year so she buys less books than that. I mean, what? Who buys less books than they can read in a month or year? She also only buys new books if her physical tbr is less than 5 books. This stuff is life changing for me.

    My epic September unhaul

    The books I got rid of this month are ones that I bought with a vague interest in them. In reality they have been on my shelf for untold months and I have no interest in reading them anytime soon. The ones that I really hesitated on getting rid of I looked up on Goodreads to see if they actually interested me or not. Most of the time they were not something I know I would reach for.

    I’m not going to give you the list of books because I don’t want to get attacked or give you a bad impression of a book. You might love them and I don’t want to be the reason you never pick them up.

    I started September with 117 unread books. I read 8 of them and I unhauled 39 of them. I now have 81 unread books. (Please don’t do the math because it won’t match.)
    I know I won’t get them all read before the end of the year. And it’s fine, but I actually want to read all of these. The best part is not feeling so overwhelmed by the amount of unread books I own. I would love to only have around 10 books on my physical tbr. Or to even buy each book as I want to read it. I will get there eventually. The fastest way is to stop feeling like I’m going to miss out if I don’t buy all the books that everyone is saying I need to read. It’s ok to say no to a book. Especially if you have no idea when you would actually read it.

    In the book community there is this saying that it’s not hoarding if its books. That is such a bad way to think about owning books. It is hoarding if your book collection is out of control or causing you anxiety.

    Now don’t get me wrong, I have a huge collection of Harry Potter and Sarah J Maas books. They are my favorites and I will probably never stop collecting them. What I don’t want is a bunch of unread books sitting on my shelves giving me dirty looks every time I walk past them. I’m sure you feel the same way.

    Hopefully some of that made sense. Now, on to my actual October tbr.

    The official list.

    Kingdom of Ash
    By Sarah J Maas
    The final book in the Throne of Glass series! I have already started this one but I’m reading it very slowly. Because I want to actually understand what is going on. And also not yell at my kids because I just NEED to finish the book. Please tell me I’m not the only one who has done this.

    City of Bones
    By Cassandra Clare
    Another book I’ve already started. I read this book ages ago. Like over 10 years ago. So I’m basically reading it again for the first time. I liked it the first time I read it and I’m hoping I still feel the same this time around. This series is a huge part of my unread book count. You know, cause there are like 50 of them out.

    Nevernight
    By Jay Kristoff

    Annnnd another book I’ve already started. I tried reading this book back in July and I just couldn’t handle it at the time. This time around I’m reading it on Libby and it’s going much better. The physical copy has footnotes on literally every page and they were so distracting. I got ripped out of the story every few paragraphs because of them. The good news is this ebook version does not have footnotes. So now I can read the story without that distraction. I also read faster on my iPad so I will hopefully get through this nightmare book quickly.

    Golden Son
    By Pierce Brown

    Not on my original tbr but that’s because I didn’t own it when I made my list. I got this on an amazing deal from Amazon and I am going to read this one. Probably after I finish at least two of my current reads. It’s the second book in the Red Rising trilogy and I am really excited to get back into this world.

    Frozen Tides
    By Morgan Rhodes

    The fourth book in the Falling Kingdoms series. I’m excited to see what happens in this book. Everything is pretty much up in the air so I’ll just have to read it to find out what happens!

    The Two Towers
    By JRR Tolkien

    I reread The Fellowship of the Ring in August and I’m looking forward to rereading this one as well. This is one of my most beloved series. I read it originally when I was 13 and I can’t wait to read it again with my adult mindset.

    Hunting Prince Dracula
    By Kerri Maniscalco

    I’m so looking forward to this one! I loved Stalking Jack the Ripper and I hope this one is full of just as much mystery and intrigue as the first book. I’m really looking forward to more Thomas and Audrey Rose banter.

    Ruin and Rising
    By Leigh Bardugo

    At this point in the list, the rest of these are hopefuls. If I finish the other books on the list I’ll get to at least one of these. This book has been on my tbr for months on end and I just need to read it so I can get to the goodness that is Six of Crows and King of Scars. I liked the first book in this trilogy. I think I gave it a 4 star rating. The second book should not even exist. It was the most pointless book I have ever read. That’s the reason why I’ve put off reading this one for so long. Because I just don’t want to be disappointed again.

    Wicked Saints
    By Emily A Duncan

    I really don’t know anything about this book. I got this in an Owlcrate box and at first I was pretty excited about it. But it sat and sat on my shelf. I’m now at the point where I just need to start reading it and if I don’t end up liking it, it’s ok. I’ll donate it to my local library.

    Assassin’s Creed: Renaissance
    By Oliver Bowden

    I love the Assassin’s Creed games, but I don’t have the time to sit and play games. I don’t really desire to play them either. I have watched my husband play all of them so I don’t really need to play them myself. I’m very intrigued by these books. They look pretty easy to read and I’m excited to dig into this series. Also, Ezio is my bae so I’m really excited to read his story.

    Here’s to reading.

    I know I won’t read all of these. Not unless I want to ignore my family and my home. Which I don’t. I do however want to read so I’ll do my best to make the most of the reading time I’m given. It’s month two of homeschooling. Now is where the routines I set up in September will get tested. Wish me luck that we can keep up the routines and schedules!

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. What did you think about the advice my friend gave me on book buying? I am still acknowledging what this means for me as a reader and it’s the best news I’ve heard yet!

  • The TBR,  Wrap Ups+Book Hauls

    August Wrap Up + September TBR

    Here is my August Wrap Up and my September TBR! I'm participating in another Harry Potter themed readathon and I'm so excited! I'm so ready to knock some great books off my unread shelf. Come see what I'm planning to read this month.

    *Well hello friends. It seems I got lost somewhere in the never ending summer activities. And, honestly, I needed a break. I feel much better about spending time here and I can’t wait to add all of the book reviews I’ve been saving up. I have such a hard time writing reviews that I always feel super intimidated by them. But I decided that the only way I’ll get better is with practice. Anyway, grab a cuppa and read on for my August wrap up and my September TBR.

    August Wrap Up

    August was a doozy of a month! I struggled through a reading slump and then when I wanted to read I just didn’t have the time. Plus, it was NEWTs so I felt pressured to read. I ended up finishing 6 of the 7 books I needed to read to become a Librarian. So I didn’t pass my NEWTs but its ok! The whole thing starts over again in April and I’m so excited to take my OWLs next year. I wonder what career I’ll pick?

    Ancient Runes:

    Rebel Spring ⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: Morgan Rhodes
    I liked this book a lot more than the first one (Falling Kingdoms). The characters are much improved. The plot is way more complex than I originally thought it was going to be. The writing style is still not my favorite, but it has improved a ton since the first book.

    The Fellowship of the Ring ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: J.R.R. Tolkien

    It’s been 16 years since I first read this magical story and I loved it every bit as much this time around. I don’t know why, but for some reason I was letting myself be intimidated by this book and I kept putting off reading it. I was 13 the first time I read it. I’m not sure why, at 29, I was feeling intimidated. At least I finally got started on my reread.

    The Wicked Deep ⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: Shea Ernshaw

    This was a sweet little romance. I loved Hazel and Bo. Their relationship was amazing, but I feel that the author left out a lot of depth and complexity. I wish the book had been a bit longer so that I could really get into the story.

    Defense Against the Dark Arts

    Days of Blood and Starlight ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: Laini Taylor

    My favorite book this month! I love this book so much. I feel that it is the perfect sequel to Daughter of Blood and Bone. There is so much heartbreak but it was written so beautifully. I loved every second of this book!

    Children of Blood and Bone ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: Tomi Adeyemi

    It took me a long time to get through this book, and it wasn’t because I didn’t like it! I hit a reading slump literally in the middle of it so I took 4 days off from reading it. It was such an amazing story though. I can’t wait for the sequel to come out in December.

    History of Magic

    Empire of Storms ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
    By: Sarah J. Maas

    This book was so good! There was so much going on and Aelin’s plots were the most complex yet. I love how Sarah is so good at creating such complex story lines. I love making all of the connections between characters and places and times.

    The Assassin’s Blade
    By: Sarah J. Maas

    This was the book I didn’t finish this month. I started it on the 30th and we just got super busy. I literally had no time to read. I’m really liking what I’ve read so far though. It’s not hard to read and it’s great to get a peek into Celaena’s life before Endovier. I’m still reading it and with any luck I’ll be finished with it either on the 3rd or the 4th of September.

    So, that’s my August wrap up! Even though I didn’t get to all of the books on my tbr it was still a really good reading month.

    August book haul.

    If you want to you can see the list of books I bought in the month of August right here. It’s a link to my Goodreads and I always make a new shelf for all the books I bought the previous month.

    September TBR

    Since I love readathons so much I just couldn’t help myself when I was invited to do another Harry Potter themed readathon for September. This one is called Hogwartsathon and it’s hosted by @laureads_ and @niffler_reads on Instagram. The official hashtag is #hogwartsathon.

    Platform 9 3/4: A sequel
    Dev1at3 by Jay Kristoff

    Welcome to Hogwarts: A book over 394 pages
    Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

    Sorting Hat: A book with your house colors on the cover
    Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

    Ghosts of Hogwarts: A contemporary
    If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch

    Mr. Ollivander: A book over 2 years old
    The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons

    Diagon Alley: A book with a lot of hype
    Red Rising by Pierce Brown

    Flourish and Blotts: Random book from tbr
    Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

    Bonus: Forbidden Forest: Book with dark themes (only read this if you complete all other prompts)
    Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

    May the odds be in my favor.

    I’m very determined to read all of these books this month. I’m on a book buying ban so I want to make the most of it and really knock some books off my unread shelf. I’m so tired of buying more books than I know I can read or will read so it’s time to start some new habits.

    What are you hoping to get to this month?

    Happy reading,

    Alicen

    P.S. You can always find me on Instagram @thecozyshelf!