We’re firmly in 2019 now, so it’s time to think about a very important task this year: reading. I’m trying to read 30 books this year, which is basically 2.5 books a month. Last year I aimed for 24 (2 books a month) and ended up reading 33, so 30 seems feasible! But like all type-A people, I need a plan to make 30 books a reality. That’s where this post comes in: I’m going to share the books on my TBR list, or my to-be-read list.
There are 2 categories of books on this list: general books I want to read and books I think I’ll read for the Modern Mrs. Darcy 2019 Reading Challenge. I’ve done her reading challenges the last few years and it has been such a great experience. It has broadened my reading life, as I’ve read books that I probably wouldn’t have otherwise, which would have been a real shame.
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Books in General
Anne Boleyn, A King’s Obsession – I saw that Alison Weir, amazing historian, wrote a historical fiction novel about Anne Boleyn, one of the most fascinating people ever, and you know I had to buy it. I’m currently reading it and I’m loving it!
Good Omens (Audible) – I’m currently listening to this! I last read it in high school, but the TV version comes out this year, so I’m rereading it before it comes out. Basically, an angel and a demon decide that they actually like the Earth and work together to make sure the End of Days doesn’t come. And it’s comedic, I swear. I remember loving it in high school!
Lean In – I know, I know, I’m behind the times. But I got this for Christmas and I’m excited to dig into it. This is about women in the workforce and helping them to “sit at the table.” The book’s description says, “Sandberg provides practical advice on negotiation techniques, mentorship, and building a satisfying career. She describes specific steps women can take to combine professional achievement with personal fulfillment, and demonstrates how men can benefit by supporting women both in the workplace and at home.” (x)
Transcription – Oh my goodness I am SO excited to read this book! It’s by Kate Atkinson, who also wrote Life After Life, and I’ve been looking forward to its publication since I first heard the premise. The description says, “In 1940, eighteen-year old Juliet Armstrong is reluctantly recruited into the world of espionage. Sent to an obscure department of MI5 tasked with monitoring the comings and goings of British Fascist sympathizers, she discovers the work to be by turns both tedious and terrifying. […] Ten years later, now a radio producer at the BBC, Juliet is unexpectedly confronted by figures from her past. A different war is being fought now, on a different battleground, but Juliet finds herself once more under threat” (x).
White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism – This is a book that I’m reading for a book club and I’m really excited. It’s pretty much what it sounds like from the title: “Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue” (x).
The Fiery Cross – This is a reread for me, as it’s the 5th book in the Outlander series. It’s so secret that I love Outlander, which features a 20th century woman thrown back into the 18th century. This book in the series finds that woman living in America in 1771. I can’t really say any more without giving away spoilers from previous books, and since my purpose in life is to convert as many people as possible to the Outlander family, I don’t want to spoil the books/seasons of the show for anyone.
Elements of Eloquence – This has been in my TBR stack for a long time … like, I got it for Christmas in 2017. Yikes. But I’m going to read it this year! I love books for writers on how to be a better writer, which is why I got this in the first place. This book in particular is about writing beautiful and memorable phrases.
The Winter Mantle (Audible) – This is sitting on my Audible shelf, and its what I’ll listen to after Good Omens. I love Elizabeth Chadwick’s historical fiction novels, and I’m excited to read this one as it goes to a time period I haven’t read a ton about: right around when William the Conqueror conquered England. This book centers on one English earl who returned to France with William, met William’s niece, and married her. I look forward to starting this!
Bad with Money: The Imperfect Art of Getting Your Financial Sh*t Together – This is one that I don’t own yet but I want to because I feel like I don’t know enough and I want to feel more confident. Gaby Dunn, the author, also has a podcast by the same name, on top of her YouTube channel with comedy partner Allison Raskin and her other work. “In Bad With Money, she reveals the legitimate, systemic reasons behind our feeling of helplessness when it comes to personal finance, demystifying the many signposts on the road to getting our financial sh*t together, like how to choose an insurance plan or buy a car, sign up for a credit card or take out student loans” (x).
Books for the Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenge
I’ve really enjoyed participating in the Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenge the last few years, and so I plan to do it again this year. I haven’t figured out most of my reads yet, so I’ll share the ones I do know and then the categories that I don’t. Hopefully you guys can help me figure out some books to read!
A book in the backlist of a favorite author – I’ll probably go with something by Jodi Picoult. I’ve read a lot of her books and most of them I have a hard time putting down, but I also haven’t read most of her newer ones, so this seems like the perfect time. I’ll either read Small Great Things or A Spark of Light.
A book that you’ve been meaning to read – I think that for this category I can count anything from my TBR list up above, but what I really want to count is a book like Elements of Eloquence, one I’ve had for a while but haven’t read yet.
3 books by the same author – I have a couple different options here. I might do a Harry Potter reread, as I haven’t read the series in a few years. But I might also go with Leigh Bardugo, as it was just announced that Shadow of Bone and Six of Crows are coming to Netflix. You might remember that I’ve read both in the Six of Crows duology, so that just leaves the Shadow of Bone trilogy.
A book by an author who is new to you – I’ve followed Christine Lynn Herman on Twitter for a little while now, and I’m so excited for her debut The Devouring Gray. Her website describes the book as “THE DEVOURING GRAY is a YA contemporary fantasy novel perfect for fans of Stranger Things, The Raven Boys, or Riverdale, with horror-tinged magical elements and an endearing group cast” (x).
A book published before you were born – I haven’t reread Pride and Prejudice in YEARS and this will be the year that I will correct that!
Topics that I don’t have ideas for: a book about a topic that fascinates you, a book recommended by someone with great taste, a book you chose for the cover, a book in translation, and a book outside your genre comfort zone. Do you guys have any ideas of things I could read?
What’s on your TBR list this year?
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