Taming the TBR Update

Taming the TBR Update

A few weeks ago, I put out a short-term project called #tamingtheTBR. This was basically a way for me to clear my bookish calendar for the summer and let me read whatever I want. It’s the summer after all and the summer deserves certain types of reads. For me, it’s going to be a lot of romance, a lot of fantasy, and a little bit of diverse reading.

I know there’s a couple of slow burners in my pile and I might skip them depending on my mood. That’s right, I’m going to kick off the TBR and just read books because of the mood I’m in. I want to make a pretty good dent in my TBR list this summer. I’m already getting anxiety that I won’t get to read everything I want. I mean, it’s more realistic to think this way.

Anyway, I did come away with a few highlights that I want to share. But from this point on, it’s going to be reading for me and I’m so excited about it.

Finished reading all the books

Well, just the books I had to read. It actually didn’t turn out so bad. Aside from a couple more books I’m waiting on for various IG promotions, I’m pretty much done! I did end up not reading a couple of the books I chose from Netgalley and I’ll share those reasons why.

I won’t be using Netgalley anymore

When I first started out, I used Netgalley to get books and review. It was a lot of fun! It allowed me to build my blog and my credibility. I was able to work on my review style too because of it. But as my Instagram started to take off, I didn’t need the books I was receiving on Netgalley. In  fact, I started ignoring my Netgalley reviews because I was getting so many books in the mail I’m happy to read.

So I’ve decided that I’m not going to be using Netgalley to request and review books, but I will use it as a resource on all the new books coming out and I can easily request from publishers.

I had the worst book slump ever

Scratch that, this wasn’t the worst book slump. That was the few years after college where I just didn’t care about books and just wanted to watch TV for a little while. That was my worst book slump. However, it did take me a week to read a contemporary YA story that would have taken me about two days. I mean, that could have been the book too, but I’m not going to count that.

As I mentioned in my post from a few days ago, I’m legit over reading. I guess when I’m asked to read a bunch of books I’m not in the mood to read, then I find myself wanting to stop reading all together. It’s something valuable and I’m glad I learned that about myself. But I’m glad that this slump is over as you can see by my review of Save the Date by Morgan Matson. I’m now reading They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera which is giving me serious Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe vibes.

Finally I organized my books and ready to read!

It’s been an interesting few weeks. I don’t think I’ve bellyached more than maybe I was a kid at Disneyworld and I didn’t get a chocolate Mickey ice cream bar. I finally took a moment to go through all my books in my TBR, make the choice on the ones I do intend on reading, and displayed them out like a library or a bookstore or something.

To make things short, I displayed all my books in my room. I don’t plan on having a TBR during these months because I want to really go by my mood. I still have a few books that I’m going to be reading for my book club, but aside from that it’s free reading from here on out.


I hope you enjoyed this update and I do hope you follow along with me as I read books existing in my TBR. Who knows, maybe you’ll read along with me or we’ll coincidentally read the same book at the same time.

Speak No Evil by Uzodinma Iweala

Speak No Evil by Uzodinma Iweala

I haven’t read a book that made me mad in a really long time. I’m glad that this book was the break from that. When I get mad at a book that’s really good, it’s because of how it all played out and what the outcome of everyone’s actions led to. It’s been a really long time since I felt this way and honestly, I appreciate the anger.

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Bookstore Tour: The Last Bookstore, Downtown Los Angeles

Bookstore Tour: The Last Bookstore, Downtown Los Angeles

I haven’t done a bookstore tour in a really long time. I think I was still living in Brooklyn where small bookstores reign gloriously. But I went on vacation and did some road tripping recently and I have bookstores to report back!

Today we’re going to be heading to the West (best) Coast to check out The Last Bookstore in Downtown LA. If you’re not aware, The Last Bookstore is probably one of the most instagrammed bookstores. The reason: because this store is outfitted with artsy bookish displays for you and your friends to pose next to.

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The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea

The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea

The American Dream. Many people talk about it, but no one really knows what it means. Some people work their entire lives to try and achieve it and some people succeed. Sadly, sometimes it takes death to figure out that not only you achieved the American Dream, but excelled beyond it.

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My Favorite Snacks While Reading

My Favorite Snacks While Reading

When it comes to reading, it’s always important to have the essentials by your side. You’ll need some water for hydration and tea or coffee for the hygge effect. Pillows and blankets for warmth (or comfort if you’re me) and candles because why not?

But one thing I always also remember to include is a snack. I’m a huge fan of snacking while reading. I feel like my hands need to shovel my feelings into my mouth while I’m reading through a particularly difficult passage.

However, not all snacks are created equal and if you’re reading a book the one thing you don’t want to do is stain or crumb up your pages with your chocolate mousse or Oreo cookies.

So here’s some of the snacks I prefer to eat (with a lot of photos I found while digging through my photo gallery):

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The Last Equation of Isaac Severy by Nova Jacobs

The Last Equation of Isaac Severy by Nova Jacobs

At first, I was a little skeptical about this book. A story that has the word “equation” in the title reminds me of Mark Watney in The Martian and how much math I had to do. Happily, there isn’t much math in this book but a wonderful journey of a family coming to terms with their late father’s last wish.

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Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

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Wow. I sat down with this book over the past few days and I couldn’t put it down. Honestly, I would try and use the bathroom and hold it for an hour only succumbing to the excruciating pain of holding it for that long. I’m lucky it’s the beginning of the year and there wasn’t much going on because I think both Cinder and Scarlet has cemented my love for this series. I legit just went onto Amazon and used my Christmas money to buy the other books.

Here’s a little more about the book

Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive. 

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

My thoughts

If you’re into books with a lot of adventure and action, then this is the book for you. While it does expand a little more on what will happen next in the Lunar Chronicles, I think this book just cements the predictions we all made at the end of Cinder. I won’t give those away, but let’s just say that the rumors were true.

I think the most significant part of this story is the wolves. I was impressed by how Marissa Meyer was able to take the wolves and Little Red Riding Hood and connect that back to the moon and Luna. It was a really interesting way of wrapping together two stories into one.

Similarly to Cinder, if you’re looking for the old fairy tale, you’re not going to find it. Yes it has the hooded girl and the grandmother and the wolf, but to say this is Little Red Riding Hood is an insult to both the authors. This is not that fairy tale and I’m so glad that it isn’t. It would make way more predictable.

What I loved the most about these stories (and hopefully in the other books in the series) is the strong female characters. They’re not damsels in distress and they’ve been touched by a lot of tragedy in their lives to waste away as some helpless person. They’re fighters and thinkers and stronger than their male counterparts. It makes you feel alive and wonder if you’re capable of that kind of strength.

The best part is that it’s not completely high fantasy. There’s a lot where you can relate to these characters and nothing feels forced or pushed on them by some hidden agenda with the author. They all have faults and they all have strengths and it makes the characters all feel real in this made-up world.

I think at this point in the series, I want to see what happens next. I couldn’t put this book down and I’m pretty certain I won’t be able to put down the rest. I feel like I’m right at the top of the hill and ready for my rollercoaster ride down to the end. I can’t wait to read the next books in the series!

  • Paperback: 452 pages
  • Publisher: SquareFish
  • Rating: 5/5 stars
  • Buy Scarlet on Amazon

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