Saturday, September 21, 2019

Cleaning Up My TBR Pile #28






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?

As of my last Cleaning Up post I had 2,002 books on my TBR pile. Last week I was trying to figure out how many books were on my TBR pile that is part of different series that I haven't read yet. This lead to me going through a lot of my books and I am now at 1,965 books on my TBR pile. I cleaned almost 40 (37) off my shelves, which feels really good.

At this point, my only goal is to get through the books that I don't already own in some way.

Love.
Vengeance.
Madness.

Ien Montgomery wants nothing more than to find love and compose music, something impossible under the weight of his family's expectations. When he meets a beautiful violin-prodigy, Kiera McDougal, he is certain he has found his one true love. With her, he imagines a future outside of his parents' control. That is, until a horrible accident tears them apart.

Disfigured and abandoned, Ien thinks of nothing but returning to Kiera and exacting revenge on the people that ruined his life - his parents. But, vengeance is empty. Betrayed by those closest to him, Ien discovers that the price for his happiness may be his sanity.

Set amidst the landscape of New York's Gilded Age, and inspired by Phantom of the Opera, TRANSCEND takes a journey through Ien's psyche and exposes the fine line between love and madness.

Thoughts: This book seems very unique and has a lot of likes, but I can't see myself picking it up considering it's been on my shelf since 2012.

Decision: Toss

I'm disfigured. Scarred. Ugly.
When I look in the mirror, I see a stranger. When I look over my shoulder, no one's there…
Yet I feel watched. Hunted. Afraid.
And then he tells me I’m beautiful.
He tells me I’m safe.
I believe him.
Until someone tries to kill me.
Secrets abound, danger is near, and still… my heart desires a boy with whiskey-colored eyes and far too many secrets.
Secrets that could cost me my life.
To stay alive I have to look deep, beneath the masks everyone wears, to find the truth.
To find myself.

Thoughts: I must have been in a mood when I added these last two books. Two books back-to-back where the characters are scarred. This one seems interesting, but I can't see myself getting to it ever.

Decision: Toss

Isaac Mayfair is hiding a dark secret. And just when Adria Dawson thinks the worst of her life among the werewolf world is over, she learns the secret that can rip her and Isaac’s love apart. Adria must come to terms with what the truth means for her. What it means for her life and how much time she has left to live it. She must choose between two different fates, neither of which can offer life as a certainty.

As if Isaac’s betrayal isn’t enough, Adria learns that there are things out there older and more powerful than werewolves could ever be. An archaic entity known only to few as the Praverian, unlike anything Adria has ever known or heard of.

As Adria struggles with her own fateful dilemmas, she must also try to find out why the Praverian is so interested in her and do everything in her power to stay out of its way.

Thoughts: I have a weak spot for werewolves, but this synopsis seems like book one is starting in the middle of an already developed series and I don't want to spend most of it confused. Also, it's not available in Kindle anymore so that doesn't help.

Decision: Toss

It's not always easy being a female warrior with a nickname like Annwyl the Bloody. Men tend to either cower in fear - a lot - or else salute. It's true that Annwyl has a knack for decapitating legions of her ruthless brother's soldiers without pausing for breath. But just once it would be nice to be able to really talk to a man, the way, she can talk to Fearghus the Destroyer.

Too bad that Fearghus is a dragon, of the large, scaly and deadly type. With him, Annwyl feels safe - a far cry from the feelings aroused by the hard-bodied, arrogant knight Fearghus has arranged to help train her for battle. With her days spent fighting a man who fills her with fierce, heady desire, and her nights spent in the company of a magical creature who could smite a village just by exhaling, Annwyl is sure life couldn't get any stranger. She's wrong...

Thoughts: Since I just entered a giveaway for this one, I think I'll be keeping it. Dragons are a weak spot for me as well.

Decision: Keep

Emma's life has been hell since she moved from sunny California to a remote Alaskan town. Abandoned by her father and living with the guilt of causing her mother's death, she makes a desperate dash for freedom from her abusive stepfather. But when her car skids off the icy road, her planned escape leads to further captivity in a world beyond her imagining. Dragged across the tundra by an evil mountain man and his enormous black wolf, she learns that love can be found in the most unexpected places. Amarok, as she's nicknamed the wolf, is a young man from the gold-rush era enslaved by an ancient shaman. Emma's gentle touch and kind heart win his love and devotion. When a vicious madman-trapped in bear form by the same Shaman-attacks the travelers and injures Amarok, Emma must find the strength to face her fears and free the wolf she's come to love. But that means she must face down the evil shaman, a Siberian mammoth hunter from the ice age, and he has no intention of giving up his power to her.

Thoughts: This sounds like a really unique story, but I don't think it's for me.

Decision: Toss

Sir Merrick Hadrian hunts monsters, both human and supernatural. A Knight of the Order of the Round Table, his use of magick and the technologies of steam power have made him both respected and feared. But his considerable skills are useless in the face of his greatest challenge, guardianship of five unusual children. At a loss, Merrick enlists the aid of a governess.

Miss Caroline Bristol is reluctant to work for a bachelor but she needs a position, and these former street children touch her heart. While she tends to break any mechanical device she touches, it never occurs to her that she might be something more than human. All she knows is that Merrick is the most dangerously attractive man she's ever met—and out of reach for a mere governess.

When conspiracy threatens to blur the distinction between humans and monsters, Caroline and Merrick must join forces and the fate of humanity hinges upon their combined skills of steam and sorcery...

Thoughts: I know you aren't supposed to judge a book by its cover, but I seriously didn't expect to like this book because of it. This book seems 100% up my alley

Decision: Keep

Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend.

But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart . . . misses.

Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Kyra is not your typical murderer, and she’s certainly no damsel-in-distress—she’s the lovable and quick-witted hero of this romantic novel that has all the right ingredients to make teen girls swoon.

Thoughts: This one sounds really good and unique. Plus, I am seriously swooning over this cover.

Decision: Keep

Beautiful Vega Zaragoza was poised to become fashion’s next “it girl” when she learned the hard way that sex and politics don’t mix. Now the former model spends her days behind the camera, working as a videographer to hide from public scrutiny. Her life is on autopilot until a promising new job sparks her ambition. There’s just one catch: she must land an exclusive interview with JP Davenport, the golden boy of American politics and first in line for Georgia’s open senatorial seat.

Charming and gorgeous, JP is also fiercely private, a charismatic enigma with his fair share of secrets—not to mention a string of romantic conquests a mile long. He could make Vega’s career, or destroy what credibility she has left—because JP has made it very clear that his interest in Vega is anything but professional. Vega should know better than to trust a man like him. But kiss by heated kiss, she discovers this man may be worth the risk.

Thoughts: This sounds interesting and like my kind of read, but I don't think I'll ever get to this one.

Decision: Toss

What do you do when you've always dreamed of a hero; your knight in shining armor, only to find when he arrives he isn't a hero at all? ... He's a killer.

Ronnie Rose is trying to cope with the loss of her father; now it looks like she might lose everything else that's dear to her too. Huge debts threaten to destroy her family, her childhood home and her future. Only one person cuts through her pain. Kalen Smith has just moved to town. He's trouble and everyone knows it. He and his mysterious friends keep to themselves and the town likes it that way. But when Kalen mourns at her dad's funeral, Ronnie wants to know why and her investigation plunges her into a dangerous world of murky government secrets, with deadly consequences. Ronnie knows she should walk away from Kalen before it's too late. Problem is, she's falling for him...

Can we choose who we fall in love with?

Thoughts: This one I'm unclear how it ended up on my TBR pile. This isn't my usual and I don't think it's for me.

Decision: Toss

Mallory killed her boyfriend, Brian. She can't remember the details of that night but everyone knows it was self-defense, so she isn't charged. But Mallory still feels Brian's presence in her life. Is it all in her head? Or is it something more? In desperate need of a fresh start, Mallory is sent to Monroe, a fancy prep school where no one knows her . . . or anything about her past. But the feeling follows her, as do her secrets. Then, one of her new classmates turns up dead. As suspicion falls on Mallory, she must find a way to remember the details of both deadly nights so she can prove her innocence-to herself and others.

In another riveting tale of life and death, Megan Miranda's masterful storytelling brings readers along for a ride to the edge of sanity and back again.

Thoughts: This is another one I'm not sure I know how it ended up on my shelves. Must have been adding stuff willy-nilly.

Decision: Toss

Now is not the time for Carmen to fall in love. And Jeremy is hands-down the wrong guy for her to fall for. He is infuriating, arrogant and the only person who can stand in the way of Carmen getting the one thing she wants most: to win the prestigious Guarneri competition. Carmen's whole life is violin, and until she met Jeremy, her whole focus was winning. But what if Jeremy isn't just hot ... what if Jeremy is better than her?
Carmen knows that dating Jeremy can't end well, but she just can't stay away. Nobody else understands her - and riles her up - like he does. Still, she can't trust him with her biggest secret: She is so desperate to win she takes anti-anxiety drugs to perform and what started as a quick fix has become a hungry addiction. But now Carmen is sick of not feeling anything on stage and even more sick of always doing what she's told, doing what's expected.
And, as Carmen starts to open up to Jeremy, she realizes that sometimes being on top just means you have a long way to fall...

Thoughts: This sounds great, but considering I deal with issues like this on a daily, I don't really want to bring that home with me.

Decision: Toss

Ava Michaels used to think she was special.

As a child, she fantasized about having magical powers . . . making things happen. But Ava grew up and eventually accepted the fact that her childish dreams were just that, and maybe a normal life wasn't so bad after all.

Now a young college student, Ava meets Caleb Foster, a brilliant and mysterious man who’s supposed to help her pass Physics, but in reality, has another mission in mind. What he shows Ava challenges her view of the world, shaking it to its very core.

Because Caleb isn't quite what he seems. In fact, he's not entirely human, and he's not the only one.

Together, the duo faces a threat from an ancient race bound to protect humans, but only after protecting their own secrets—secrets they fear Ava may expose. Fighting to survive, Ava soon learns she's not actually normal . . . she's not even just special.

She's a little bit more.

Thoughts: All I can think is that I'm good and that I've read several books like this before.

Decision: Toss

Overall: Tossed 9 and kept 3. Total on TBR pile=1,956

Any thoughts on my choices this week? 
Did I toss too many? Not enough?

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