TBR Lows & Highs #11

October 28, 2018

The WINNER of last week’s “lows” vote was… *drumroll*


As promised, I’ll now add this book to my “top-TBR” shelf on Goodreads to remind me to read it sooner rather than later.


  • Link back to the original post at Howling Libraries
  • Sort your Goodreads TBR shelf by date added, ascending
  • Find 5-10 (or more, if you feel ambitious!) titles to purge from your TBR (the “lows”)
    • ALTERNATIVE OPTION: Find 5+ titles that are at the BOTTOM of your TBR—books you want to read someday, just not right now! (Thank you for this idea, Ari!)
  • Post those 5 books in the list, with a brief explanation
  • Next, sort your Goodreads TBR shelf by date added, descending
  • List the last 5 (or more!) books you added to your TBR, with a synopsis or your brief summary of why you added it (the “highs”)

I love shouting out everyone’s posts on the meme each week, but it’s gotten popular enough that I’m having a hard time keeping track of everyone’s posts! Starting next week, I may see about adding a “linky” like some blog memes use, but for the time being, PLEASE feel free to comment with your links below so everyone can visit your blog—and definitely keep tagging me in them, because I LOVE reading them!


(books that are LOW on my TBR—vote in the comments for which one I should move UP on my list!)

1. The Fellowship of the Ring — J. R. R. Tolkien (owned)
I always say I’ll read this trilogy eventually, but honestly, it took me four tries to finish The Hobbit, so I’m in no rush at all to pick this up.
2. The Exact Opposite of Okay — Laura Steven
I’ve heard a lot of people rave about how feminist and sex-positive this is, so it’s definitely on my radar, but I always seem to forget about it!
3. Dress Codes for Small Towns — Courtney C. Stevens
I don’t know much about this and never hear anyone talk about it except BooksAndLala on Booktube—it’s her favorite book of all time, and I enjoy her recommendations, so I finally added it after hearing her gush about it.
4. Beartown — Fredrik Backman
All I know about this book is that the cover is gorgeous, and it’s about hockey and rape culture. I really want to check it out, but since I know nothing about hockey, I worry I might not enjoy those parts of the story? Can anyone tell me if this concern is well-founded?
5. The Girl Who Drank the Moon — Kelly Barnhill (owned)
The plot for this MG witchy fantasy sounds so fun, but I’ve read a little of Barnhill’s writing and sorta can’t stand her adult writing style, so it’s one of those things where it’s like, will I hate her MG writing style, too? Sigh.


Sorry in advance, but I added a LOT of books to my TBR shelf this week…

1. Miranda in Milan — Katharine Duckett
I’m not huge on Shakespeare retellings, but a queer (f/f) retelling of The Tempest is definitely gonna catch my eye, you know?
2. The Haunting of Tram Car 015 — P. Djeli Clark
I’ve heard so many good things about this author’s work, and this is about a haunted tram car, which sounds so cool!
3. Your Favorite Band Cannot Save You — Scott Alan Moore
I have very mixed feelings about this because it seems like nobody knows what genre it really is, but after how much I loved We Sold Our Souls, I’m kind of in the mood for another creepy band-related book?
4. Vigilance — Robert Jackson Bennett
This is being marketed as a “dark sci-fi parable inspired by American gun violence”, which means it’s probably going to be anxiety-inducing as hell, but I’m also very intrigued.
5. The Test — Sylvain Neuvel
I hear amazing things about this author, and a sci-fi dystopian novella about immigration and how difficult that process is sounds timely and important.
6. Permafrost — Alastair Reynolds
Time travel is not a story theme I’m typically super into, but I love anything creepy or strange set in icy places like the Arctic Circle, for whatever reason… so I’m keen on this!
7. Ragged Alice — Gareth L. Powell
A Welsh thriller about a detective who can literally SEE the evil inside of people? Yes, yes, 100% yes.
8. At the Cemetery Gates, vol. 2 — John Brhel & Joseph Sullivan (owned)
I already had one collection from this author duo on my kindle when they emailed me offering me a review copy of this one, so I had to say yes, obviously! Be expecting a review for this one soon!
9. Rayne & Delilah’s Midnite Matinee — Jeff Zentner
I still haven’t read anything by Jeff Zentner, but theoretically, I think I’m going to love his books, and this contemporary about two girls and their love of horror films and TV hosting is no exception.
10. The Beast’s Heart — Leife Shallcross
I am hearing SUPER mixed reviews for this Beauty and the Beast retelling, but I won’t lie, I wanna read it so badly.
11. Coffee Boy — Austin Chant
A friend recommended this to me a few days ago on GR, and all I know is that it’s a new adult contemporary romance between two guys with own-voice trans rep? The cover is so cute and it has great reviews so I wanna check it out.
12. The Hating Game — Sally Thorne
I feel like I’ve heard so much praise for this adult contemporary over the last few months that I HAVE to read it.
13. Cry Wolf — Patricia Briggs
I originally wasn’t going to touch the Alpha & Omega series until I finished the Mercy Thompson series, but then I found out that the author actually recommends this super weird, intricate series order, where you read the first two A&O books in between MT 1 and 2, and I’m a huge stickler for following authors’ recommended series orders.
14. Daughters of the Lake — Wendy Webb (owned)
Amazon Prime members get to pick one free book from this list of new/upcoming releases every month, and this mystery/thriller looked promising enough.
15. Lily and Dunkin — Donna Gephart
I don’t read much MG contemporary, but this sounds adorable and, uh, give me all the precious MG trans rep. ♥ It also has bipolar rep!
16. Slender Man — Anonymous
I’m hearing super mixed reviews, but this is one of those things I’ll have to check out for myself because I’ve been obsessed with the Slenderman legends since… I dunno, long enough to make me feel old. (Did anyone else use to binge watch Marble Hornets late at night and scare themselves shitless?)
17. Rogue Nights — multiple authors (pre-ordered)
All I needed to know was that this upcoming romance anthology has a Talia Hibbert story and WOW, pre-order, 1-click, deliver to my kindle ASAP please and thank you.
18. Merry Men — Robert Rodi (owned)
Queer AF Robin Hood retelling graphic novels, YES PLEASE.
19. The Mansion — Ezekiel Boone (owned)
Funny story, I was looking at this listing on Netgalley and it was on “read now” status and my toddler came over and played with my mouse and next thing I knew, this was… on my kindle? It’s okay, though, it’s a sci-fi about a murderous AI inside a house and that’s basically one of my biggest fears so this should be a fun ride!
20. Vox — Christina Dalcher
I saw so many negative reviews for this that I didn’t think I was interested, until I took the time to see why it got so many poor reviews, and it’s apparently because it’s being accused of bashing men and Christians? And honestly, if you hadn’t noticed, ranting about how much I’ve been burned by Christian men is kind of my brand, so yeah, I need this.

Which book from my “lows” do you think I should add to my “top-TBR” shelf?



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  • Reply CJR The Brit October 28, 2018 at 10:37 am

    I vote for The Girl Who Drank the Moon! I haven’t read any of these but I love that cover ❤

  • Reply Alexa October 28, 2018 at 11:02 am

    A blogger whose recommendations I trust recommended Dress Codes for Small Towns to me (I think because it has a questioning MC?), so I want to read it, but I’m not really sure what it’s about otherwise. Still, I’m voting for that one 😀
    I read Caroline’s Heart by Austin Chant and I’m planning to read both Coffee Boy and Peter Darling – so far I LOVED what I’ve read.

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries October 28, 2018 at 2:20 pm

      Oooh, I didn’t know it had a questioning MC! That makes me more excited for it. 😀 Thanks for voting! And I’m glad you loved what you read from Austin Chant because I know I need to focus on my TBR but I am sooo tempted to go ahead and buy Coffee Boy lol!

  • Reply Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams October 28, 2018 at 1:14 pm

    I keep hearing amazing things about Fredrik Backman, but for some reason his books’ synopses don’t really reel me in? ? I’ve heard a lot of good things about Dress Codes, though! 🙂

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries October 28, 2018 at 2:20 pm

      I feel you, that was me for a long time with his books, too! The only reason I left Beartown on my TBR at all was because some booktubers raved about it and I thought I would give it a try, at least once. I think it’s one I’ll get from the library, though, in case I’m not a big fan.

  • Reply Kayla @ Books and Blends October 28, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    You must read The Hating Game!

  • Reply devouringbooks2017 October 28, 2018 at 1:45 pm

    I loved Vox! Hope you enjoy it!

  • Reply devouringbooks2017 October 28, 2018 at 2:35 pm

    I’m going to join you this week!

  • Reply Eva | Brilliantly Bookish October 29, 2018 at 6:20 am

    Dress Codes for Small Towns is SO SO SO GOOD! You have to read it! It’s one of my all time favourites!

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  • Reply Vicky October 29, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    OMG that such a long list… The Exact Opposite of Okay is SO GOOD!! Definitely do give it a read if you have the time! This tag is a great idea as well, I might have to do it, just because my TBR is so long and the list of books I never pick up is always growing!!

  • Reply Kara Keenan (@keen23) October 29, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    I read VOX in a three hour period this weekend. It was excellent. Religion and politics need to be kept separate for good reasons. I also made the mistake of getting the wrong VOX novel from the library, and last month read a weird 80’s phone sex book.

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries November 2, 2018 at 1:46 pm

      That’s awesome! I’m sorry you originally picked up a weird phone sex book though, LMAO!

  • Reply Rachel @ Typed Truths November 1, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    coffee boy is a really fun and easy read! i really need to read more from austin chant.
    i vote for dress codes because i’ve heard lala talk about it so much in her videos i’m intrigued ?

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries November 2, 2018 at 11:06 am

      Aww, good! I keep telling myself I’ll wait to buy it until I’ve worked on my TBR a bit but honestly, I think I might fit it into my reading some time this month. 😛
      Haha that’s why I want to read Dress Codes, too! She raves about it so much ?? Thank you for voting!

  • Reply Kathy @ Books & Munches November 8, 2018 at 6:25 am

    I wrote a review on The Exact Opposite of Okay and. like. READ IT AND LET IT CONVINCE YOU MAYBE?
    [I remember loving it because I had it signed and everything. Also, Laura is an amazing, bubbly person.]

    • Reply Destiny @ Howling Libraries November 8, 2018 at 11:42 am

      When I was looking at it I was thinking, “SOMEBODY liked this a lot but I can’t remember who,” and then this morning I glanced at my phone and saw your comment’s preview pop up and went “IT WAS KATHY!” which, well… automatically moved it up on my TBR ?

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