Saturday, March 7, 2020

Cleaning Up My TBR Pile #41



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 the last clean up I had 1856. As of now, I have 1877. Amazon found some of the ebooks I've had for a while that I hadn't added on Goodreads yet.

This is a short, sweet novella.

Ryan Hunter's parties are legend. And tonight she's going to be there.

Liza Matthews anticipates the return of her best friend and only love since kindergarten from soccer camp. But when Tony finally shows up, his mind is more focused on another girl. And worse, she's a soccer player. Fighting for the attention Liza craves, she's just a hairbreadth away from making a very stupid decision. But when extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures, she's prepared to play ball to get her man.

The tryouts are hell, the first match ends bloody, and the morning after the selection party she wakes up in the worst place possible—in the arms of the captain of the soccer team. The hottest guy in school. Ryan Hunter.

Thoughts: I feel like reading the description it gave the whole book away.

Decision: Toss

Sixteen-year-old Riley Williams has been able to see ghosts since the car crash that took her mother’s life and shattered her family. Guilt-ridden over the belief that she’s somehow responsible for her mom’s death, Riley is desperate to see her mother’s elusive spirit to gain her forgiveness.

When her father moves the family to Scotland so they can all start over, Riley believes her life couldn’t get worse––that is until the ghost of nineteen-year-old Ian MacKinnon catches her purposely cutting herself. An uneasy truce quickly turns into friendship, and soon Riley’s falling hard for Ian.

Riley believes her gift could help Ian end the curse that has kept him tied to the land for centuries, but that would mean letting him go forever and she’s not sure she is strong enough to do that. As if her life wasn’t complicated enough, the spirit of the woman who killed Ian returns and she’ll stop at nothing to keep Riley from helping Ian find eternal peace.

Thoughts: I feel like I deal with cutting so much at this point in my regular life I don't really want to read about it.

Decision: Toss

Emerson Ray is trouble. Juliet knows it the minute she lays eyes on Beachwood Bay's resident bad boy. Forced to spend her summer before college in the sleepy beach town, she never expected to crash into the most devastating guy she’s ever met—or for Emerson’s blue eyes to strip through her dark secrets, and make her feel a desire she’s never known. Their connection is undeniable, but Juliet is torn. She knows, once she gives him everything, there’ll be no turning back.

Juliet McKenzie is dangerous. Emerson can tell from the way she blows through all his defenses, laying bare the demons he’s carried alone all his life. He’s left a trail of broken hearts and empty beds in his wake, but Juliet is different. Her innocence is intoxicating—and the passion she keeps hidden, just below the surface. He wants to be the only one to set it free, but with every kiss, he’s closer to losing control and doing the one thing he swore he never would: fall in love.

One summer. Two damaged hearts. Their story is only just beginning…

Thoughts: This one really does nothing for me.

Decision: Toss

When the world ends, can love survive?

For Scarlet, raising her two daughters alone makes fighting for tomorrow an everyday battle. Nathan has a wife, but can’t remember what it’s like to be in love; only his young daughter Zoe makes coming home worthwhile. Miranda’s biggest concern is whether her new VW Bug is big enough to carry her sister and their boyfriends on a weekend escape from college finals.

When reports of a widespread, deadly “outbreak” begin to surface, these ordinary people face extraordinary circumstances and suddenly their fates are intertwined. Recognizing they can’t outrun the danger, Scarlet, Nathan, and Miranda desperately seek shelter at the same secluded ranch, Red Hill. Emotions run high while old and new relationships are tested in the face of a terrifying enemy—an enemy who no longer remembers what it’s like to be human.

Set against the backdrop of a brilliantly realized apocalyptic world, love somehow finds a way to survive. But what happens when the one you’d die for becomes the one who could destroy you?

Thoughts: I've heard nothing but good things about this book and I like Jamie McGuire's books.

Decision: Keep

She has everything she's ever wanted. But not her memory...

When Chloe fell asleep in study hall, it was the middle of May. When she wakes up, snow is on the ground and she can't remember the last six months of her life.

Before, she'd been a mediocre student. Now, she's on track for valedictorian and being recruited by Ivy League schools. Before, she never had a chance with super jock Blake. Now he's her boyfriend. Before, she and Maggie were inseparable. Now her best friend won't speak to her.

What happened to her? Remembering the truth could be more dangerous than she knows...

Thoughts: I'm not 100% sure how this ended up on my bookshelf.

Decision: Toss

“Who am I? For all intents and purposes, I am the nice guy; the loyal brother and decent citizen. I am quiet and non-confrontational. I am the brother nobody worries about and can always depend upon. To my family, I am the good one. However, that’s only what they see on the outside.” ~ Jeremy Evans

Outwardly, Jeremy Evans is a typical guy, the calmest of the Evans brothers. He’s obsessed with cars, enjoys the company of beautiful women, and is devoted to his family. Inwardly, however, Jeremy is a ticking time bomb. Torn between what’s right versus what’s wrong. When the attempted rape on Darcie occurs, Jeremy finally loses the battle within himself. The pure hatred for Sulfur Heights consumes him and escape is all he thinks about.

Three years later, he is secretly engrossed by the drug-infested underworld. Jeremy’s double-life leads him on dark and sinister paths of drugs, violence, and rage.

The Evans family is destroyed after Presley’s murder and consequently Jeremy’s arrest. He’s sent to prison where he’s forced to survive with the mistakes he’s made on his conscience. However, only one thought lingers. It consumes the years he spends locked in a cell. Retribution.

Cami Ryker used to have a picture-perfect life. She was loved by her family and happy with her life until her brother’s sudden death tore her family apart. Cami is forced to care for her ailing mother and assume the responsibilities of a normal adult. However, when the bills are paid and her mother is tucked away for the night, Cami likes to cloud her mind in order to escape her daily struggles. Late one night, a stranger trolling the streets rescues her in a dark alley. The mysterious stranger will become one of the most important people in her life until the day he’s sent to prison.

Four years later, Jeremy is released and seeking redemption for his mistakes, but the betrayal is still thriving amongst the Evans family.

Will Jeremy finally find the solace within to gain forgiveness from his family that he desperately craves? And is it possible for Jeremy to save those he loves and exonerate himself in the process?

Thoughts: I have books one and two to read so I think I'll hold off on this one until I do that.

Decision: Toss

Book Two in the Spellbound series continues the love story of Logan and Serena. Having previously dispatched Christophe, the dark demon trying to capture and kidnap Serena for her special witch DNA in Book One, the two lovers believe they are now free to plan and live their lives together. Or are they?

When an innocent mistake made by their newlywed friends frees the way for Christophe to return, their idyllic attempt at happiness is marred by the nightmare they must outsmart, finally, to achieve the happily ever after they deserve.

They know they can rely on their coven to be there for them, and some new friends and additions to the family, as they once again embark on an epic battle that will secure their life, their love, and their future together. Once, they were Spellbound, now their story continues, for love, forever, for Everspell. 

Thoughts: I need to go and re-read book one since I barely remember this story.

Decision: Toss

Joclyn Despain has been marred by a brand on her skin. She doesn't know why the mark appeared on her neck, but she doesn't want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won't let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to.
The scar is the reason she is being hunted.

If only she knew that she was.

If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air.

Joclyn attempts to find some answers and the courage to follow her heart. When Ryland finds her scar; only he knows what it means, and who will kill her because of it.

Thoughts: This one has a lot of positive reviews and is on KindleUnlimted so I think it's a win.

Decision: Keep

Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who's always done what she's supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change but she doesn’t know how.

Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp.” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.

One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.

Thoughts: This is one I think I added because it was super popular but it's not really for me.

Decision: Toss

Never leave home without salt.

Penelope is a witch, part of a secret society protecting humans from demon attacks. But when she was a child, a demon killed her parents—and stole her magic. Since then, she’s been pretending to be something she’s not, using her sister’s magic to hide her own loss, to prevent being sent away.

When she’s finally given the chance to join the elite demon-hunting force, Penelope thinks that will finally change. With her sister’s help, she can squeeze through the tests and get access to the information she needs to find "her" demon. To take back what was stolen.

Then she meets Carter. He’s cute, smart, and she can borrow his magic, too. He knows her secret—but he also has one of his own.

Suddenly, Penelope’s impossible quest becomes far more complicated. Because Carter’s not telling her everything, and it’s starting to seem like the demons have their own agenda…and they’re far too interested in her.

Thoughts: This is one I feel like I've read several times before.

Decision: Toss

An extraordinary debut novel of love that survives the fires of hell and transcends the boundaries of time.

The narrator of The Gargoyle is a very contemporary cynic, physically beautiful and sexually adept, who dwells in the moral vacuum that is modern life. As the book opens, he is driving along a dark road when he is distracted by what seems to be a flight of arrows. He crashes into a ravine and suffers horrible burns over much of his body. As he recovers in a burn ward, undergoing the tortures of the damned, he awaits the day when he can leave the hospital and commit carefully planned suicide—for he is now a monster in appearance as well as in soul.

A beautiful and compelling, but clearly unhinged, sculptress of gargoyles by the name of Marianne Engel appears at the foot of his bed and insists that they were once lovers in medieval Germany. In her telling, he was a badly injured mercenary and she was a nun and scribe in the famed monastery of Engelthal who nursed him back to health. As she spins their tale in Scheherazade fashion and relates equally mesmerizing stories of deathless love in Japan, Iceland, Italy, and England, he finds himself drawn back to life—and, finally, in love. He is released into Marianne's care and takes up residence in her huge stone house. But all is not well. For one thing, the pull of his past sins becomes ever more powerful as the morphine he is prescribed becomes ever more addictive. For another, Marianne receives word from God that she has only twenty-seven sculptures left to complete—and her time on earth will be finished.

Thoughts: This one I think I only added because of the cover.

Decision: Toss

Sentenced to death by the man she loves . . .

Jade has no control over her future. She is the Emmía, the girl whose magical blood keeps her kingdom’s cursed soil fertile and ensures the survival of her people. But her destiny is ruined when pirates take her magical medallion, the loss of which is treasonous, and the prince she loves is honor-bound to sentence her to death.

Forced to flee to the pirate she hates . . .

Jade escapes from prison, but her sister is captured and will die in her place unless Jade returns with the medallion still on the pirates’ ship. In disguise, she joins the pirate crew where she finds herself drawn to the first officer, William, and his claims of the crown’s hidden brutality in the kingdom. But when Jade learns the fate of every Emmía before her, she is finally forced to choose her own destiny: die a martyr or live a rebel.

Thoughts: This is another one I feel like I've read before.

Decision: Toss

A sexy category romance from Entangled's Brazen imprint...

The blind date from hell is about to get hotter…

Brianne Nave is never doing her friends a favor again. When they begged her to go on a blind date, she didn’t expect someone so perfectly gorgeous. She’s a mousy librarian—totally not in this man’s league. And judging by his odd reaction when she opens the door, he knows it, too.

Air Force Pararescuer Ryan Flannery avoids his hometown at all costs. He’s not thrilled about the date until he’s shocked silent by the prickly little librarian’s sweet curves and kissable lips…and her smart mouth. But then an argument leads to a kiss that spirals out of control. How can two people have so little chemistry outside the bedroom when they fit together so perfectly in it?

When their friends strand them in a cabin to "work things out," Bri’s not sure whether to kill him or put the industrial-sized box of condoms they find to use. Bottom line—Ryan’s career military and hates the tiny town she loves. He’ll leave, just like everyone else in her life. And if she’s foolish enough to give him her heart, he’ll take it with him.

Thoughts: I have so so sooo many Katee Roberts books on my shelf right now that are unread I feel like I need to read those first before I start looking at new ones.

Decision: Toss

Undersea romance with captivating merboys, deep friendship, and spectacular pearls.

Set in Tera Lynn Childs’ fin-flicking world that began with Forgive My Fins, this 100-page digital novella focuses on Periwinkle Wentletrap, Princess Lily’s best friend, and is perfect for fans of mermaids, light romance, and mythology retellings.

As Princess Lily’s emissary, Peri works hard to make sure her best friend knows all the goings-on in the underwater kingdom of Thalassinia. The upcoming Sea Harvest Dance means plenty of fun for them, too, including shopping for jewels, trims, and dressmaking supplies. Peri especially loves the pearls she finds at Thalassinia’s marketplace—and she might be falling head over fins for Riatus, the thoughtful pearl trader who looks like a dashing pirate.

When Lily realizes her friend has a crush, she is determined to help them get together in time for the dance—except her matchmaking efforts backfire, sweeping Peri into dangerous depths and tangled in confusing tides. Should Peri give up on Riatus and find a different date to the Sea Harvest Dance, or will they finally find a way to float along with the same current?

Thoughts: I've read the rest of the series so it would feel silly not to read this one.

Decision: Keep

“There would be no happy ending for us. He was too damaged. I was too broken.”

The conclusion to USA Today bestselling author Priscilla West’s New Adult Novel Wrecked.

Wrecked should be read before this book.

Lorrie’s semester started off hopeful but ended in disaster. Now, she’s even more lost and confused than she was at the beginning of the year. As Lorrie flees to the only family she has left, she has to come to terms with how things ended with Hunter.

Hunter has fought for so long to keep the truth from Lorrie in an effort to protect her, but that has only caused more heartache and pain.

Realizing his mistake, Hunter has made a vow to get Lorrie back, but is it too late?

Will Hunter be able to overcome his own demons and help Lorrie through her pain, or are they destined to keep hurting each other?

Thoughts: I think I would have liked this book right after reading book 4 but now I'm not so sure. I think this is one I'll pass on.

Decision: Toss

Patricia Allenz was a somewhat typical girl. For the past few months, she’d been busy counting down the months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, and seconds until her first day of college at Port Townsend University, in Washington. Patricia’s life was a simple one as far as she knew. Most of her memories involved her family, which consisted of her younger brother Kellen, and her Abuela Viola. After her grandmother’s death on her sixteenth birthday, Patricia was convinced that day had been the worse day of her life.

Wishful thinking, on her part. On the night before her first day of college classes, her grandmother visits her in a dream. What starts out as a reunion between the two rapidly turns into a complete nightmare.

From that night, forward her path changes from a straight and narrow one to a totally different realm altogether. It does not help that along the way the men that she’d loved at one time, or rather centuries ago, are so conflicted that she cannot decide who to trust. Her body craves them both, but her heart only sings to one of their souls.

Patricia is forced to face truths she cannot understand, betrayals from loved ones, and a love so powerful she would die to keep him safe. A new world of archangels, demons, and witches threatens to swallow her whole. She has the choice to run away from the unknown or live up to the title Archangel Princess of Alpheratz forever.

Will Patricia stand up to her fate or will she crumble and fight against what is destined to come?

Thoughts: The description of this one was a bit boring for me.

Decision: Toss

My name is Lizzie Connelly, and I have it all. The gorgeous apartment. The new job most women would rip out their own souls for—working for Margaret Emerson at Emerson & Taylor. I have one of those lives you’ve always dreamt about, the kind you only see on HBO. But, the thing is, that life is a lie. A façade.

It all started with one call. “Everything you know about your story—your father’s story—is a lie. It’s up to you to uncover everything.” One call and I turned my world upside down to dig my way into Margaret’s life—the woman who I’d never laid eyes on until recently. My stepmother who took everything after my father died fourteen years ago.

The plan was simple—figure out what role she played in my father’s death and expose her to the world.

But here’s another thing: simplicity doesn’t exist, and my plans are flawed from the beginning because I never anticipated Oliver. Sexy, too smart for his own good, and infuriating, he’s the one person who could blow my plans to uncover Margaret. She’s his mother, and in another life, that would have made him my stepbrother.

I want to pretend that none of that matters, that I can simply finish what I came to do without sparing him a second glance and another thought.

Like I said, though, there’s no such thing as simplicity.

My real name is Gemma Emerson.

And this is my story.

Thoughts: I am not a huge fan of Emily Snow's writing.

Decision: Toss

Avery has just met her hot upstairs neighbor. He's irresistible. Tattooed. And a virgin.

Nursing student Avery Michaels wants nothing to do with dating—she's perfectly happy single. Privy to too many of her mother's bad decisions and even worse taste in boyfriends, all Avery can handle is a string of uncomplicated hookups whenever the mood strikes.

When she meets smoking hot tattoo artist Bennett, she wants him—for just one night. But he won't accept a no-strings-attached arrangement. He lives by a straight-laced code of values based on his own troubled upbringing.

Bennett sees something special in Avery and he wants more from her. Way more. As Avery wrestles with her emotions for Bennett, danger and tragedy force them to open up to each other. And Avery must face the terrifying realization that she wants more from him, too.

So she needs to make a choice—let Bennett go or finally let him in.

Thoughts: The description of this book really does nothing for me.

Decision: Toss

Love Songs for the Road by Farrah Taylor

A rock star. The nanny. A love that could rock their world.

The only thing rock star Marcus Troy loves more than making music is his kids. So finding just the right nanny to take on tour with them is important—as is proving to his ex he deserves joint custody. Falling for his employee wouldn’t just be fodder for the paparazzi: it could ruin everything.

Too bad the perfect nanny turns out to be beautiful, vibrant Ryan Evans. Ryan’s never left her small Montana town before, so she jumps at the chance to see the country. And as much as accidental fame doesn’t gel with shy Ryan, what does is her relationship with her capricious, smoking-hot, shockingly good dad of a boss. Marcus is nothing like what she expected. But when the whole world’s watching them, will life in the spotlight be too hot to handle?

Thoughts: I don't read books with musicians in them.

Decision: Toss

Falling in love changes everything...

Three bad things I learned this year:
-People you trust lie, even parents.
-That hot guy, the one who’s totally into you, he might not be the one.
-Things are not always how they appear.

Three good things I learned this year:
-Best friends are always there for you, even when they’re far away.
-That other hot guy, the one who remembers your birthday, he just might be the one.
-Oh, and things are not always how they appear.

Anna Sanders expected an anonymous (and uneventful) senior year until she crossed paths with rich-and-sexy Jack Kyser and his twin sister Lucy.

Pulling Anna into their extravagant lifestyle on the Gulf Coast, Lucy pushed Anna outside her comfort zone, and Jack showed her feelings she’d never experienced... Until he mysteriously withdrew.

Anna turned to her internship at the city paper and to her old attraction for Julian, a handsome local artist and rising star, for distraction. But both led to her discovery of a decades-old secret closely guarded by the twins’ distant, single father.

A secret that could permanently change all their lives.

Thoughts: This is another one where the description kind of bored me.

Decision: Toss

Meet Sloane Emily Jacobs: a seriously stressed-out figure-skater from Washington, D.C., who choked during junior nationals and isn’t sure she’s ready for a comeback. What she does know is that she’d give anything to escape the mass of misery that is her life.

Now meet Sloane Devon Jacobs, a spunky ice hockey player from Philly who’s been suspended from her team for too many aggressive hip checks. Her punishment? Hockey camp, now, when she’s playing the worst she’s ever played. If she messes up? Her life will be over.

When the two Sloanes meet by chance in Montreal and decide to trade places for the summer, each girl thinks she’s the lucky one: no strangers to judge or laugh at Sloane Emily, no scouts expecting Sloane Devon to be a hero. But it didn’t occur to Sloane E. that while avoiding sequins and axels she might meet a hockey hottie—and Sloane D. never expected to run into a familiar (and very good-looking) face from home. It’s not long before the Sloanes discover that convincing people you’re someone else might be more difficult than being yourself.

Thoughts: I really adore the sound of tihs story, but I don't think I'll ever find myself picking it up.

Decision: Toss

Overall: tossed 18 and kept 3. As of now, I have 1,855 books. I did a really good job this week.


How'd I do this week?
Did I toss any I shouldn't have?
Did I keep any that I shouldn't?

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