Discussion Posts

Cleaning Up My TBR: Down the TBR Hole #36

We’re slowly making headway on clearing out the good ole Goodreads TBR list, as it also steadily grows on the other end haha. Here is the next installment of the Down the TBR Hole meme that was started by Lia @Lost In a Story!

Here is how it 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?


One-Hit Wonder by Lisa Jewell

Shy and gawky, Ana has always daydreamed about living the life of her exotic half-sister, Bee, a pop singer who had a #1 hit single before she inexplicably vanished from the celebrity scene. When Bee turns up dead, Ana is dispatched to the big city to clear out her apartment. Instantly seduced by the second-hand glamour of Bee’s baubles, bangles and bottles of Pierre-Jouet, Ana takes up with Bee’s wild club-hopping cronies. News of a missing cat and a remote country cottage soon convince Ana that her sister was leading a secret life. Now Ana is on a mission to discover what really happened to Bee Bearhorn, the one-hit wonder–and what is about to happen to the unremarkable Ana Wills. 

My Thoughts: I’ve read, and really enjoyed, a few other Lisa Jewell books, and this one sounds a little darker and very interesting. VERDICT: KEEP


Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira

It begins as an assignment for English class: Write a letter to a dead person. Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain because her sister, May, loved him. And he died young, just like May did. Soon, Laurel has a notebook full of letters to people like Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Amelia Earhart, Heath Ledger, and more — though she never gives a single one of them to her teacher. She writes about starting high school, navigating new friendships, falling in love for the first time, learning to live with her splintering family. And, finally, about the abuse she suffered while May was supposed to be looking out for her. Only then, once Laurel has written down the truth about what happened to herself, can she truly begin to accept what happened to May. And only when Laurel has begun to see her sister as the person she was — lovely and amazing and deeply flawed — can she begin to discover her own path in this stunning debut from Ava Dellaira, Love Letters to the Dead.

My Thoughts: This sounds like it could be really cool and unique. It also has a pretty goof rating on Goodreads… VERDICT: KEEP


Graduates in Wonderland: The International Misadventures of Two (Almost) Adults by Jessica Pan and Rachel Kapelke-Dale

Two best friends document their post-college lives in a hilarious, relatable, and powerfully honest epistolary memoir.

Fast friends since they met at Brown University during their freshman year, Jessica Pan and Rachel Kapelke-Dale vowed to keep in touch after their senior year through in-depth—and brutally honest—weekly e-mails. After graduation, Jess packs up everything she owns and moves to Beijing on a whim, while Rachel heads to New York to work for an art gallery and to figure out her love life. Each spends the next few years tumbling through adulthood and reinventing themselves in various countries, including France, China, and Australia. Through their messages from around the world, they swap tales of teaching classes of military men, running a magazine, and flirting in foreign languages, along with the hard stuff: from harrowing accidents to breakups and breakdowns.

Reminiscent of Sloan Crosley’s essays and Lena Dunham’s Girls, Graduates in Wonderland is an intimate, no-holds-barred portrait of two young women as they embark upon adulthood. 

My Thoughts: This sounds like it could be a fun adventure, but if I’m being honest, I will probably never get around to picking this up… VERDICT: TOSS


If Only by A.J. Pine

Sometimes it takes crossing an ocean to figure out where you belong.

It’s been two years since twenty-year-old Jordan had a boyfriend—which means it’s been forever since she, well, you know. But now she’s off to spend her junior year in Aberdeen, Scotland, the perfect place to stop waiting for Mr. Right and just enjoy Mr. Right Now.

Sexy, sweet (and possible player) Griffin may be her perfect, no-strings-attached match. He’s fun, gorgeous, and makes her laugh. So why can’t she stop thinking about Noah who, minutes after being trapped together outside the train’s loo, kisses Jordan like she’s never been kissed before? Never mind his impossible blue eyes, his weathered, annotated copy of The Great Gatsby (total English-major porn)…oh, and his girlfriend.

Jordan knows everything this year has an expiration date. Aberdeen is supposed to be about fun rather than waiting for life to happen. But E. M. Forster, Shakespeare, and mistletoe on Valentine’s Day make her reconsider what love is and how far she’s willing to go for the right guy.

My Thoughts: I was ready to toss this one, but then I re-read the blurb and now my Scotland wanderlust is strong. I live for a love triangle too (sue me). VERDICT: KEEP


Unwind by Neal Shusterman

Connor, Risa, and Lev are running for their lives.

The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: Life is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child “unwound,” whereby all of the child’s organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn’t technically end. Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state, is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to escape and to survive.

My Thoughts: WOW. So many thoughts on this one. It has amazing reviews, and sounds terrifyingly awesome in concept and I do love a good dystopian. However; people also say it’s very disturbing and almost horror like which is not my favorite thing to read… I am very intrigued. VERDICT: KEEP


Which books would you have kept? Which would you toss? Let’s chat in the comments! ❤

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