Saturday, July 20, 2019

Cleaning Up My TBR Pile #20

I saw this on an amazing blog called Lisa Loves Literature and I immediately fell in love with the idea. It originally comes from a blog called Lost in a Story. It's all about cleaning up our generally overflowing TBR pile, and I for one need some real help with that.

Anyway, it works like this:

  • 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?

This week I'm going to be pulling 20 to go through off of my Maybe pile. My goal is to completely get rid of my Maybe pile by the end of the summer. After this week I'll have about 20 left!


She's on the run . . .

Jane Beaumont currently has in her possession: a cat, a hundred grand in cash, and a pistol. She's on her way home to Bay City, Oregon-and away from the nightmare of her violent ex-boyfriend. She'll lay low at Beaumont Body Shop, a car detailer that runs a private investigation agency in the back. The only wrench in her plan is Kage Archer: sexy, strong, and intent on protecting Jane at all costs. She's wanted Kage forever, but putting him in harm's way is not a risk she's willing to take.

He's not going anywhere . . .

Kage is no stranger to the dark side of life, but he's always walked on the right side of the law. Yet when Jane expressed her interest in him years ago, he pushed her away for her own good. Now, after learning of all she's endured, Kage can't leave her side-or hide his need for her. When a frightening situation turns dire, can Kage convince Jane that the safest place to be is in his arms?

Thoughts: This one sounds interesting and I adore a story about second chances.

Decision: Keep and move to TBR

First, she lost her heart. Then she lost her mind. And now she’s on a road trip to win back her ex. This debut novel’s packed with drama and romance!

Rosie’s always been impulsive. She didn’t intend to set her cheating ex-boyfriend’s car on fire. And she never thought her attempts to make amends could be considered stalking. So when she’s served with a temporary restraining order on the first day of summer vacation, she’s heartbroken—and furious.

To put distance between Rosie and her ex, Rosie’s parents send her on a cross-country road trip with responsible, reliable neighbor Matty and his two friends. Forget freedom of the road, Rosie wants to hitchhike home and win back her ex. But her determination starts to dwindle with each passing mile. Because Rosie’s spark of anger? It may have just ignited a romance with someone new…

Thoughts: This one sounds very predictable and it's just not for me.

Decision: Toss

Caroline is at a crossroads. Her grandmother is sick, maybe dying. Like the rest of her family, Caroline's been at Gram's bedside since her stroke. With the pressure building, all Caroline wants to do is escape--both her family and the reality of Gram's failing health. So when Caroline's best friend offers to take her to a party one fateful Friday night, she must choose: stay by Gram's side, or go to the party and live her life.

The consequence of this one decision will split Caroline's fate into two separate paths--and she's about to live them both.

Friendships are tested and family drama hits an all-new high as Caroline attempts to rebuild old relationships, and even make a few new ones. If she stays, her longtime crush, Joel, might finally notice her, but if she goes, Chris, the charming college boy, might prove to be everything she's ever wanted.

Though there are two distinct ways for her fate to unfold, there is only one happy ending...

Thoughts: This seems interesting but I don't think it's for me.

Decision: Toss

“Find Me.”

These are the words written on Tessa Waye’s diary. The diary that ends up with Wick Tate. But Tessa’s just been found . . . dead.

Wick has the right computer-hacking skills for the job, but little interest in this perverse game of hide-and-seek. Until her sister, Lily is the next target.

Then Griff, trailer-park boy next door and fellow hacker, shows up, intent on helping Wick. Is a happy ending possible with the threat of Wick’s deadbeat dad returning, the detective hunting him sniffing around Wick instead, and a killer taunting her at every step?

Foster child. Daughter of a felon. Loner hacker girl. Wick has a bad attitude and sarcasm to spare.

But she’s going to find this killer no matter what.

Because it just got personal.

Thoughts: This seems fine but again this is another one I don't think it's for me.

Decision: Toss

Ryne Taylor was a sexy bad-ass Alpha set on establishing a new pack. Melody Greene was a journalism student researching his work as a photographer—or so she said. But could Mel really be trusted or had she stumbled upon his secret? And if she knew, could Ryne save himself and the pack he’d left behind without enacting a deadly ancient law known as The Keeping? A novel of paranormal romantic suspense. Sequel to The Mating. A SKOW winner for best M-rated romance.

Thoughts: I read the first one a long time ago and never picked this one up. So I think I'm going to pass on this one for now.

Decision: Toss

When Katherine Ambrose became a Slayer, she had one goal in mind--kill the murderers who destroyed her family. After a brief mission into the human world, Kitty finds herself caught between Kenric, her long-time protector; Darien, her lovesick best friend; and Storm, the silver-blooded immortal with an ego to match her own. She never thought she'd attract the attention of one of Hell's cruel masters. When Itzal, the demonic warlord of Hell, declares war on Heaven, Kitty must fight her desires and her thirst for revenge if she wants to remain free. Not even Heaven's holy strength can deter Itzal from his target. And that target is Kitty. Heaven has bound her to their moral will. Hell is hunting her for their own dark desires. And three men are vying for her affection.

Thoughts: This sounds interesting, but I'm not really interested in a long triangle.

Decision: Toss

TESSA IS A VARIANT, able to absorb the DNA of anyone she touches and mimic their appearance. Shunned by her family, she’s spent the last two years training with the Forces with Extraordinary Abilities, a secret branch of the FBI.

When a serial killer rocks a small town in Oregon, Tessa is given a mission: she must impersonate Madison, a local teen, to find the killer before he strikes again.

Tessa hates everything about being an impostor - the stress, the danger, the deceit - but loves playing the role of a normal girl. Disguised as Madison, she finds friends, romance, and the kind of loving family she’d do anything to keep.

Amid action, suspense, and a ticking clock, this super-human arrives at a very human conclusion: even a girl who can look like anyone struggles the most with being herself.

Thoughts: This sounds like nothing I've read before and I definitely an interesting concept.

Decision: Keep and move to TBR

Noelle Buckman is looking forward to making a fresh start in college, one that doesn’t involve immature high school boys. The second she steps on campus for freshman orientation, she can sense the possibilities. Especially when she spots Andy, a resident adviser who’s not just hot but also thoughtful enough to open doors for a girl. And Andy has his eye on Noelle. Even when her nerves take control and she thinks she comes off as a hillbilly with no direction, Andy can see what she’s really like and he’s more than a little interested.But orientation is less than two full days and there’s an entire summer between Noelle and Andy. Will her attempt to romance the R.A. be as short-lived as college orientation?

Thoughts: No longer available.

Decision: Toss

From the day she arrives at the Biltmore, Tillie Reese is dazzled—by the riches of the Vanderbilts and by Mack Danvers, a mountain man turned footman. When Tillie is enlisted to help tame Mack's rugged behavior by tutoring him in the ways of refined society, the resulting sparks threaten Tillie's efforts to be chosen as Edith Vanderbilt's lady's maid.

But the stakes rise even higher when Mack and Tillie become entangled in a cover-up at the town orphanage. They could both lose their jobs...and their hearts.

Thoughts: This sounds a bit dull for me. 

Decision: Toss

Like most sixteen-year-old girls, Cassie O'Connell wonders what it's like to be in love. For Cassie, that question is even more daunting as ten years ago a virus wiped out every male on the planet.

Well, almost every male.

Cassie discovers a teenage boy, Jamie, who has been locked away in a secret isolation chamber at the lab where Amanda, Cassie's mother, works. Amanda searches for the cure to the virus—for the last ten years, she has kept Jamie hidden, to save his life and to use his blood to find a cure for the menace that still picks off male babies like a sniper.

Then Cassie finds Sam, half-dead in the mall parking lot. She helps him to recover from the bullet wound that almost takes his life; in time, she joins him in his search for the murderous “man” who is responsible for the deaths of his mother and sister. Yet Cassie soon realizes that the mysterious boy is not what he seems. Will she survive Sam's thirst for vengeance and his need to know why he is immune? Or will she become another casualty of Sam's relentless quest? Cassie's growing feelings for the strange boy propel both her and Sam toward a destiny that will change them—and the world—forever.

Thoughts: This one sounds interesting and is on KindleUnlimited so I can give it a chance.

Decision: Keep and move to TBR

Shades of Milk and Honey is an intimate portrait of Jane Ellsworth, a woman ahead of her time in a version of Regency England where the manipulation of glamour is considered an essential skill for a lady of quality. But despite the prevalence of magic in everyday life, other aspects of Dorchester’s society are not that different: Jane and her sister Melody’s lives still revolve around vying for the attentions of eligible men.

Jane resists this fate, and rightly so: while her skill with glamour is remarkable, it is her sister who is fair of face, and therefore wins the lion’s share of the attention. At the ripe old age of twenty-eight, Jane has resigned herself to being invisible forever. But when her family’s honor is threatened, she finds that she must push her skills to the limit in order to set things right–and, in the process, accidentally wanders into a love story of her own.

Thoughts: This blurb description confused me so I think I'm going to skip.

Decision: Toss

One moment. One foolish desire. One mistake. And Corinthe lost everything.

She fell from her tranquil life in Pyralis Terra and found herself exiled to the human world. Her punishment? To make sure people's fates unfold according to plan. Now, years later, Corinthe has one last assignment: kill Lucas Kaller. His death will be her ticket home.

But for the first time, Corinthe feels a tingle of doubt. It begins as a lump in her throat, then grows toward her heart, and suddenly she feels like she is falling all over again--this time for a boy she knows she can never have. Because it is written: one of them must live, and one of them must die. In a universe where every moment, every second, every fate has already been decided, where does love fit in?

Thoughts: This sounds very interesting, but I feel like I only added this one because a lot of other people have. 

Decision: Toss

In Japan, they say there’s a red thread of fate that binds people who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstance. It may tangle, it may knot, it may stretch or fray, but it will never break. It is a future as indelible as the past.

I hope that isn't true. I pity anyone destined to meet me.

----

For Bianca Ray, the past is always catching up, one way or another. Now in her third semester at college, it's doing it again. Too much drinking has led to plummeting grades and rising absences, putting her scholarships in peril. When she makes it clear that she needs help—all over the floor of her history class—she’s given one last chance to shape up: seek therapy and bring her grades up by the end of the semester, or she’s out.

Enter Catholic seminarian Daniel McGuire. The last thing Bianca wants is an aspiring priest to counsel her on how to live her life, but the handsome graduate student is different from the holy rollers she fled from at home. Gentle and unobtrusive, he helps her pick up the pieces and find a new way to live: not running from the past, but facing it head on.

But opening up her heart to release the pain means that something else can come in. As Bianca and Daniel grow closer, their relationship moves onto dangerous ground and the fragile courage Bianca has built up threatens to fail her. Can she exorcise the ghosts of her past, or will they catch hold and drag her down where not even Daniel can reach her?

Thoughts: I'm not a religious person at all so I feel like this is just not for me.

Decision: Toss


America's favorite pop band, Roman Holiday, is done, dead, and so totally last year. For eighteen-year-old rockoholic Junie Baltimore, this is music to her ears. But when she discovers their sexy ex-lead singer hiding out on the boardwalk, her summer vacation becomes the cover story of the year.

She's willing to keep him a secret, but when a sleazy paparazzo offers her the cash she needs to save the bar her father left behind, could she sell out for the chance to save her future? Who is she kidding? That's a no-brainer...but she never planned on falling head over heels for the lead singer.

Thoughts: I am so not into rock star books it's not even funny. 

Decision: Toss

After breaking up with her bad-news boyfriend, Reagan O’Neill is ready to leave her rebellious ways behind. . . and her best friend, country superstar Lilah Montgomery, is nursing a broken heart of her own.

Fortunately, Lilah’s 24-city tour is about to kick off, offering a perfect opportunity for a girls-only summer of break-up ballads and healing hearts. But when Matt Finch joins the tour as its opening act, his boy-next-door charm proves difficult for Reagan to resist, despite her vow to live a drama-free existence.

This summer, Reagan and Lilah will navigate the ups and downs of fame and friendship as they come to see that giving your heart to the right person is always a risk worth taking. A fresh new voice in contemporary romance, Emery Lord’s gorgeous writing hits all the right notes.

Thoughts: Another rockstar story I can 100% pass on.

Decision: Toss


A full-length, standalone romance from the New York Times bestselling author of Archer's Voice.

Grace Hamilton was the girl with a plan. She knew exactly where her life was going and prided herself on always achieving her goals. It was who she was, and how she lived her life. She never stepped outside the lines, and never considered what she might desire and whom she was actually trying so hard to please. Until him . . .

Carson Stinger was a man who didn't play by any rules except his own. Working in the adult entertainment industry, he didn't care what others thought, and took each day as it came, no direction, no plan. He knew what women wanted from him and believed it was all he had to offer. Until her . . .

When circumstances forced them to spend several hours together, they walked away changed. But for two people who never should have meshed, overcoming the reality of their vastly different lives wasn't possible. At least not yet . . .

Thoughts: I didn't find this at all interesting

Decision: Toss

If high school is all about social status, Indigo Blackwood has it made. Sure, her quirky mom owns an occult shop, and a nerd just won’t stop trying to be her friend, but Indie is a popular cheerleader with a football-star boyfriend and a social circle powerful enough to ruin everyone at school. Who wouldn’t want to be her?

Then a guy dies right before her eyes. And the dusty old family Bible her mom is freakishly possessive of is stolen. But it’s when a frustratingly sexy stranger named Bishop enters Indie’s world that she learns her destiny involves a lot more than pom-poms and parties. If she doesn’t get the Bible back, every witch on the planet will die. And that’s seriously bad news for Indie, because according to Bishop, she’s a witch too.

Suddenly forced into a centuries-old war between witches and sorcerers, Indie’s about to uncover the many dark truths about her life—and a future unlike any she ever imagined on top of the cheer pyramid.

Thoughts: I've had several chances to buy this one and haven't.

Decision: Toss

Something is out there...

Something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remain, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now, that the boy and girl are four, it is time to go. But the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat—blindfolded—with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. And something is following them. But is it man, animal, or monster?

Engulfed in darkness, surrounded by sounds both familiar and frightening, Malorie embarks on a harrowing odyssey—a trip that takes her into an unseen world and back into the past, to the companions who once saved her. Under the guidance of the stalwart Tom, a motley group of strangers banded together against the unseen terror, creating order from the chaos.

But when supplies ran low, they were forced to venture outside—and confront the ultimate question: in a world gone mad, who can really be trusted?

Thoughts: This is interesting but I think I'll watch the show first before I read it.

Decision: Toss

"There is nothing gutsier to me than a person announcing that their story is one that deserves to be told," writes Lena Dunham, and it certainly takes guts to share the stories that make up her first book, Not That Kind of Girl. These are stories about getting your butt touched by your boss, about friendship and dieting (kind of) and having two existential crises before the age of 20. Stories about travel, both successful and less so, and about having the kind of sex where you feel like keeping your sneakers on in case you have to run away during the act. Stories about proving yourself to a room of 50-year-old men in Hollywood and showing up to "an outlandishly high-fashion event with the crustiest red nose you ever saw." Fearless, smart, and as heartbreakingly honest as ever, Not That Kind of Girl establishes Lena Dunham as more than a hugely talented director, actress and producer-it announces her as a fresh and vibrant new literary voice.

Thoughts: I find this very interesting.

Decision: Keep and move to TBR pile

Antonio is obsessed. Theresa Drazen's the last woman he should touch.
She's going to get him killed. She's dangerous. Poison. The wrong woman.
Except...she's not the prim little heiress she seems to be.
She's perfect.
-----
Theresa Drazen can have plenty of guys, but the one she can't keep away from....the one she's just about addicted to, is more than forbidden. With felony-black eyes and a mouth built for lies, loving him is one step away from illegal.
But her body keeps overriding her brain. Maybe it's time to stop playing by the rules.
-------
And they both figure...one more time. Just one more time.
One more time and they won't get caught.
One more time and they won't get killed.
One.
More.
Time.......

Thoughts: I'm not sure why but this seems very uninteresting to me.

Decision: Toss

Overall: Kept 4, Tossed 16.

I tossed a bunch this week and it feels pretty good to finally be cleaning off my shelves.

Did you see any books you think I should have kept or tossed?

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