Let’s Talk Bookish: TBR’s

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme hosted by Eternity Books. This is my first time participating, and I’m looking forward to participating in more of these in the future.

This week’s prompt is: Are TBR’s necessary to be a book blogger or reader?

I’ll save everyone the scrolling and give the answer here: No.

End of post! We answered the question! Just kidding. There is more I have to say on this, obviously.

Maybe I’m biased as someone who rarely does TBR’s (and who rarely follows through with them when I do post them,) but the only times I feel like a TBR is necessary is if you’re participating in a read-a-thon and have specific prompts to fill because that does require planning ahead.

Other than that my own version of a TBR is to just make long lists of books I want to prioritize- usually these lists are anywhere between 10 and 20 books- but knowing I’m only going to get to 4 or 5 them in any given month; that makes it a less restrictive list, as I definitely lean towards being a mood reader. My issue with having no list at all is when there are so many books I want to read I sometimes get into this funk where I can’t decide what to pick up at all so I just… don’t pick up anything, which is very counterproductive. So, I personally like a mix of structure and lots of freedom. It’s easier to pick from a list of 20 books than a list of 400 (which is what my current Goodreads TBR is getting to be), and since I’m only going to get to a fraction of those, it still leaves me with plenty of room to let my mood decide what to pick up from the list next.

I also don’t post these lists anywhere because they’re not the traditional “These are all the books I’m planning to read this month” TBR, they’re more of a “Here’s a huge list of books, and I’m going to aim for reading at least 4 of them, and if I get to more, then that’s great, but if not that’s fine. And also there’s no way in hell I’m getting to all of them.”

I also am acutely aware of how many mood readers there are in the book community who likely don’t even make the long lists that I do. For mood readers, sometimes having a TBR can hurt more than help which is totally understandable, in my opinion. I’ve experienced that annoying feeling of forcing myself to read a book I’m not feeling that week or that month and enjoying the book a lot less than I would have otherwised, and possibly ending up in a reading slump because of it. So, I’ve personally just come to the conclusion that more restrictive TBRs that lay out exactly what I’m going to read and not giving me any extra options are just not for me, and so it makes sense to me that there are definitely others who feel this way as well, perhaps even more so.

All that being said, for other types of readers, TBRs certainly can be helpful.

Both types of readers are valid, and I happen to fall into the category of not using TBR’s, but people who do use TBR’s are equally valid and probably a hell of a lot more organized and disciplined than I am. Plus, I like reading TBR’s to try to identify the upcoming trends in the community as well as to see if there’s any books that sound intriguing to me, even if the person hasn’t read and reviewed it yet.

Tl;dr: Make TBR’s if you want, and if you’re the type of person that thrives as a reader that way then great, but they’re not necessary at all, and for certain readers they’re probably even counterproductive.

Fall Time Book Tag

It’s been a little while since I’ve done a book tag, and I love all things fall, so I figured why not do a book tag that’s dedicated to my (and many others’) favorite season?

The original tag was created by Sam’s Nonsense on Youtube, and you can find it here.

Crunching Leaves: The world is full of color – choose a book that has reds/ oranges and yellows on the cover.

I’m going with Windwitch because I just really like the composition of reds and oranges on this cover. Also as a reminder to myself to finally read Bloodwitch. I liked this one more than book one, so hopefully this series just keeps getting better?

Cozy Sweater: It’s finally coll enough to don warm cozy clothing – what book gives you the warm fuzzies?

The Dream Thieves. Wow, and just like that, this post already has more YA in it than any other post I think on my entire blog. Anyway, I read the books in the series that were out at the time right after my freshman year in undergrad and The Dream Thieves still sticks out to me. This book also has some tangentially related memories it brings up for me, plus Ronan is one of my favorite characters in the series. I love the whole series, even though I do have a lot of criticisms of it, but if I could only pick one book to read it would be this one. I do want to re-read them before Call Down the Hawk comes out.

Fall Storm: The wind is howling & the rain is pounding – choose your favorite book OR genre that you like to read on a stormy day

I don’t know why, but the word stormy just makes me want to read thrillers. It’s been way too long since I picked up a thriller (I think the last one I read was in March?) but I am hoping to pick up a couple once I finish the book I’m currently reading. Horror might be a good choice too on a stormy day, particularly in fall as we’re getting closer to Halloween. In fact it was raining today and I got a good chunk of the way through ‘Salem’s Lot so yeah. Thriller or horror would be my genre of choice for that weather.

Cool Crisp Air: What’s the coolest character you’d want to trade places with?

I would not want to trade places with most characters I read about, considering that in a lot of the books I’ve read recently my favorite characters have either died or witnessed their closest loved ones die. Still, I’ll say Nona from the Book of the Ancestor series (Red Witch) because, fuck yes, I’d love to be trained by assassin nuns to become an assassin nun. What could be cooler than that?

Hot Apple Cider: What under hyped book do you want to see become the next biggest, hottest thing?

I feel like by nature of this question I have to pick a new release? This year I’ve only read 4 recent releases< Of those, 2 were way over-hyped and not very good at all. 1 was good enough, and the last one I haven’t seen talked about much so I’m going with Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. It’s certainly not a new favorite of mine but I was pleasantly surprised by how enjoyable I found it, plus I’m all for own-voices stories, and stories about criminally ignored myths or folklore (in this case, the Mayan gods.)

Coat, Scarves, and Mittens: The weather has turned cold & it’s time to cover up – What’s the most embarrassing book cover you own that you like to keep hidden in public? 

None of them. TBH if I think a cover is embarrassing I either won’t touch the book, or I’ll get it from the library. I know this is a very superficial thing to be worried about, but I also don’t care. This was months and months ago, but the most recent example I can come up with is that I got Red, White, & Royal Blue from the library because the pink was just too much. I feel like embarrassing covers would be more of a problem if I read more romance (or, I guess, erotica) just by its nature, but I rarely pick that genre up so.

Warm, Cozy BonfireSpread the cozy warmth – Who do you tag? 

Anyone reading this! And let me know in the comments if you do it after you read mine, so I can read yours too.

Top Ten Tuesday: Page to Screen

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, she comes up with the topics, and we pick the books.

I haven’t participated in one of these before, but since Tuesday is one of my regular updates days anyway I think I might start doing more of them here and there. This week’s topic is technically a freebie related to Page to Screen so I’m just going to talk about my 10 favorite shows and/or movies based on books.

10. The Magicians (TV Series)

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This is probably a divisive one. I know a lot of people aren’t big fans of The Magicians books or TV Show. A lot of the complaints I’ve seen are because people expected Harry Potter, going into the books and what they got was… The Magicians. I’ll never understand the mindset of people who fall victim to comparison marketing. That’s not what this post is about, though, so I digress.

I think I’m in the minority because I actually think the books are done a lot better than the show— especially the most recent season of the show— but the show is still a fun time. Plus Show Penny (who is far superior to Book Penny) and Marina make it worth it.

9. Preacher (TV Series)

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I’m actually a few seasons behind on Preacher and I never read the comics it’s based on (but I eventually might,) but I remember the summer I interned at a company hours away from my school and many many more hours away from my home so I didn’t know a single person in the area, and my coworkers were 2 middle-aged people with families and that was it (it was a very small start-up) so I, a 21-year-old college student with no friends for at least like 200 miles, spent the Fourth of July binging Preacher and getting day drunk on Jack Daniels, and frankly, it was a great day.

Also I’ve been thinking about it because I just renewed my Hulu subscription so I can actually watch season 2 if I want to. I have a few other things higher on my watch priority, but. Anyway.

8. Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency (TV Series)

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Making this list made me sad all over again about the fact that this show was cancelled. While it ran it was one of my absolute favorites. Season 1 is definitely a stand out season for me.

I never read the Douglas Adams book, but my mother who did said that she thought the story of the show (at least, in season 1) was better than the book, which should definitely sell this show for you if you haven’t already watched it. There’s so much to love about this series. I’m sad it didn’t have a big enough audience to continue past its second season, but it’s definitely worth watching what did come out of it.

7. Harry Potter (Film Series)

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So, technically, Goblet of Fire isn’t my favorite film, but it is my favorite of the books so that’s why I’m using that poster. I think the champions are criminally underrated— particularly within the fandom that’s mostly book-based— but I do think they largely weren’t cast well but then… I have a lot of issues with the casting of the HP movies overall. I’m not gonna get into the technicalities though.

I know this is a basic bitch move, especially when JKR ain’t deserve my praise with how she’s been largely ignoring her own canon lately, but I can’t ignore the nostalgia factor with these. And, TBH, if JKR had just pulled a Stephanie Meyer and fucked off with her money after the movies and let the franchise be what it is it’d probably be higher on my list, so I guess all those Twilight fans I rolled my eyes at when I was younger have won this round.

6. The Hunger Games (Film Series)

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I honestly didn’t ever watch the Mockingjay movies. But The Hunger Games and Catching Fire were pretty good. I remember showing up to The Hunger Games opening night with Peeta Mellark tee-shirts that my friend and I had hand-decorated together. We used fabric paint to make a sports team jersey-esque shirt that said MELLARK 12 on the back with a piece of bread. To this day I vividly remember the piece of bread on my shirt being described to me as another friend like “the ugly piece of bread everyone throws out,” and she wasn’t wrong. I have no artistic talent.

The movies and books don’t mean all that much to me, but my memories surrounding them are some of my favorite from my early high school years, so I guess they deserve a place on this list.

5. Series of Unfortunate Events (TV Series)

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This show is SO GOOD! If you haven’t watched it, then go do it. It consumed my life while I binge-watched it. The series definitely does the books great justice, and Neil Patrick Harris does a brilliant job of playing a Very Fabulous Dastard in the role of Count Olaf.

I haven’t read the books since I was a kid if I’m being totally honest, but from what I do remember of the books, the show does a good job at staying true to them while also finding places to add in enough small twists and nuance to make it its own wonderful story in its own right. There are differences, but overall I’d say this is one of the best adaptations I’ve ever seen.

4. American Gods (TV Series)

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I still have to catch up and finish the second season (though, maybe by the time this posts I’ll be done since I’m scheduling this over a week early) but American Gods is probably one of my favorite TV series I’ve ever watched. As I’ve said before… I like it better than the book. (I’ve always been a fan of committing the sin of blasphemy though.)

Things I like better than the book: There’s so much more room in a TV Series to develop characters. One of my favorites in the TV adaptation is Mad Sweeney, but in the books he’s barely present at all. The Jinn and Salim get a lot more attention in the show, and seem (from where I am in season 2 as of writing this) like they may end up playing a more important role. Even Laura Moon gets a lot more attention and development. Slowing down the pacing gives a lot more room for things like that, and I love that shit.

3. Sharp Objects (TV Miniseries)

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Sharp Objects is probably my favorite Gillian Flynn book, and the show did such a great job adapting it! My only complaints were that they gave some of things that should have been done by Camille to Richard, which I felt took away a little bit about what I loved about her character in the book, but overall it was still very well-done.

Eliza Scanlen does a beautiful job as Amma, too. Her casting was a little older for the character than I would’ve liked, but she did a great job regardless. The show’s ending was also changed from the book, but it made sense to change it for the format and it’s definitely (and I cannot stress this enough) haunting.

2. Howl’s Moving Castle (Film)

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I haven’t been able to stop thinking about how I want to rewatch all the Ghibli movies since doing the I Should Have Read That tag, which I included the book for this on. I think it’s one of two movies based on novels directed by Miyazaki? (Too lazy to google that for correction.) My favorite Ghibli film of all time is Spirited Away, but Howl’s Moving Castle holds a special place in my heart as well.

It’s one of those rare movies that can stick with you for years after watching it, and even rewatching it a year or two ago as an adult still had me just as in love with the story as when I was a kid, which I think makes it something special.

1. Lord of the Rings (Film Series)

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I wouldn’t have guessed I’d include two separate posters on this list that have Elijah Wood on them, but here we are.

How could #1 be anything but the LOTR movies? I really need to rewatch them soon because it’s been a long ass time. I think these are some of the greatest films of all time (please don’t bring up The Hobbit movies though, thanks.) If you haven’t seen them, then you’re either a newborn baby or living under a very large rock. If you don’t like the LOTR movies… unfollow me immediately.

What are some of your favorite Page-to-Screen Films or Shows?

I Should Have Read That (Book Tag)

Thank you so much to kellyluvsreadin @ Books on the Brain for tagging me for this. I really appreciate it!

RULES:

  1. Thank the person who tagged you, and link back to their post.
  2. Link to the creator’s blog.
    This was originally created by Beth from Books Nest.
  3. Answer the questions below.
  4. Tag 10 others to take part.
  5. ENJOY!

A BOOK THAT A CERTAIN FRIEND ALWAYS TELLS YOU TO READ:

Leviathan Wakes (The Expanse, #1)

My boyfriend talks about this book a lot, and he’s been recommending it to me since before we were even officially dating which has been… 5 years. LOL. And I still have yet to read this monstrosity.

Part of it is that I have to be in a very specific mindset to want to read a space opera. The other part is that I was waiting for the print copies to get rid of that annoying “Now a TV Show” non-removable sticker (what’s with the non-removable stickers? They just stop me from buying books I otherwise would… take note publishing industry.)

Also I’m always just afraid that when I read a book someone IRL recommends that I won’t like it and I’ll end up disappointing them. Maybe 2019 will be the year I finally read Leviathan Wakes. We’ll see….

A BOOK THAT HAS BEEN ON YOUR TBR FOREVER, AND YET YOU STILL HAVEN’T PICKED IT UP:

Uprooted

Uprooted has been on my TBR since it came out in 2015. I was really excited to eventually get to it for a couple years (I am not fast… 🐌) and now everytime I go to get a book from Barnes & Noble or the library I’m like “I should eventually read Uprooted…. but not today.”

I’m not sure why I keep putting it off, tbh. I just feel like every time I think of it there’s other books that seem more pressing for me to read for whatever reason. And now that the hype is long, long over for this book I’m just still putting it off. Maybe eventually there’ll be a readathon with a prompt I can use to force myself to finally read this, because at this point that seems like the only way.

A BOOK IN A SERIES YOU HAVE STARTED, BUT HAVEN’T GOTTEN ROUND TO FINISHING:

The Girl in the Tower (Winternight Trilogy, #2)

I enjoyed The Bear and the Nightingale a lot, and it still took me almost a year to finally buy the second book. And since I’ve bought it… it’s just been sitting on my shelf. This series is definitely a very wintery story, and one I’m hoping to read before the end of this year so I can get the last book and read that as well. I’m not sure why I keep putting it off. I think I waited too long to get book 2 and my excitement sort of died.

Oh well. I’ll eventually read this. I usually start craving good winter stories either in the middle of summer when I’m wishing for cold weather or in the middle of winter when it’s actually cold so this could be a June read or it could be a December read.

A CLASSIC YOU HAVE ALWAYS LIKED THE SOUND OF, BUT NEVER ACTUALLY READ:

The Picture of Dorian Gray

I kept telling myself I’d read this. I’ve been wanting to read it since early undergrad, and here I am nearly a year post-grad and still I haven’t read a single word of this book. I’m not even quite sure what’s drawn me to Dorian Gray besides my interest in the life of the person Oscar Wilde, despite have not read a single damn word of his writing. I blame Tumblr for that.

I’m not going to sit here and lie and say I definitely plan on reading this in the near future. I don’t know if I’ll ever get around to it. I just don’t read a lot of classics.

A BOOK THAT INSPIRED A FILM/TV ADAPTATION THAT YOU REALLY LOVE, BUT YOU JUST HAVEN’T READ IT YET:

Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Moving Castle, #1)

Y’ALL KNOW WHO IT IS. Howl. Light of my life.

I grew up on Studio Ghibli movies. By far my most watched movie during my childhood was Spirited Away, but Howl’s Moving Castle probably made a close second. (Along with other Ghibli movies like Kiki’s Delivery Service, My Neighbor Totoro, and the criminally underrated Nausicaä of the Valley and the Wind.)

I read voraciously throughout my childhood and somehow never managed to pick up Howl’s Moving Castle as a kid, despite loving the movie. (I also think my crush on Howl had something to do with it but, you know.)

A BOOK YOU SEE ALL OVER INSTAGRAM, BUT HAVEN’T PICKED UP YET:

Queenie

Awkward moment when I don’t really use bookstagram all that much? I happened to see it on my personal instagram feed earlier today though so I’ll go with Queenie.

This is a new-ish release (I believe it’s been out since March) so I don’t feel bad for not having picked it up yet. It’s on my Goodreads TBR, but I’m not sure how much of me adding it is genuine interest and how much is just trying to keep up with hype which? Now that I’m working full time, I haven’t cared as much about so I may never read this one and honestly I don’t feel? That bad about that decision?

I don’t have people to tag, but if you want to do this tag because it looks fun feel free to say I tagged you! (And I’ll keep you in mind the next time I do a tag.)

Music Shuffle Book Tag

Thanks to Kelly @kellyluvsreadin for tagging me to do this!

This tag was created by Becca Leighanne (original post is here). The rules are simple: using your preferred source for music (iTunes, Spotify, etc), put the songs on shuffle. For each song, list a character, ship, or book that the song reminds you of. Do this for 5-10 books. You owe zero explanation for any of the songs you pair up, but you can explain if you want. It’s up to you.

Here are my songs:

1. Akureyri — Crywolf

Oh god, your eyes
They’re shining like the sun

Patroclus and Achilles from The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. I remember a lot of similes and metaphors where Patroclus compares Achilles to the sun?

Also, damn, I haven’t listened to this song in like a year and half though but I LOVE Crywolf thanks to this meme for bringing him back to me.

2. Drag — Day Wave

You say that I’m too hard to find
And I don’t make time
And you’re just like that

Wow, is this whole meme going to be songs I haven’t listened to in over a year? Damn.

Anyway, the general lyrics and feel of this song gave me a lot of All For the Game by Nora Sakavic vibes. I feel like it could apply to pretty much any of the Exy players in the whole series, particularly any of the Foxes or Jean.

3. Closer — The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey

Wow, okay, just bring me back to my fave semester of college like that. Feels, man.

So baby pull me closer in the backseat of your Rover
That I know you can’t afford
Bite that tattoo on your shoulder
Pull the sheets right off the corner
Of the mattress that you stole
From your roommate back in Boulder
We ain’t ever getting older

If I read more contemporary I’d probably have like a million ships I could put these lyrics to. But I don’t, so I’m struggling. I’m gonna go with Alice and Quentin from The Magicians by Lev Grossman. And not just because she can’t get older as a niffin…

4. Thanatos — Soap&Skin

Ages of delirium
Curse of my oblivion

I swell without a scar
To the end of time
A shell without a star
At the end of time

Koschei the Deathless from Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente. That’s my instinct, no explanation.

5. Revolution — Diplo ft. Faustix, Imanos & Kai

Fallen people listen up!
It’s never too late to change our luck
So, don’t let them steal your light

Don’t let them break your stride
There is light on the other side
And you’ll all the raindrops falling behind
It’s a revolution

Darrow, Sevro, Cassius, Mustang, et. al from the Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown. The techno beat in particular really made me feel like I had to go with a more futuristic sci-fi setting for a revolution as opposed to a fantasy setting.

6. If I Had a Heart — Fever Ray

Dangling feet from window frame
Will I ever ever reach the floor?
More, give me more, give me more

Crushed and filled with all I found
Underneath and inside
Just to come around
More, give me more, give me more

Ah ah, ah ah
Ah ah, ah ah
Ah ah, ah ah
If I had a voice, I would sing

Maika Halfwolf and that little slithery, eye-filled, demon boy inside her from Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda.

7. Torn Apart — Bastille, GRADES

You stepped with a heavy tread,
And left your mark
Oh, your mark on me
The space you used to fill is now this great black hole
Oh, you’re out of sight but not out of my mind

My first thought is quite literally the Monster and Dr. Frankenstein himself from Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, but I also laughed out loud at my own connection because it seemed a little ridiculous but like… am I wrong?

That’s it for this tag! Feel free to roast me for having a taste in music that’s all over the goddamn place.