Tidying the TBR List

I originally titled this post ‘Clearing out the TBR List’, but that’s actually just a small part of my annual TBR list review. Once upon a time I liked to keep the list under 100 books. Last summer, the list exploded and it’s been growing at a rapid rate since I got back into book blogging. Once or twice a year I like to comb through that list and remind myself of all the incredible books waiting for me. I also use that review time to make shelving adjustments (re-shelve books, create new shelves) and remove books I’m no longer interested in. I don’t mind having a big TBR list. I like to keep my choices open – sometimes I’ll start five dud books before I get to a really good one – and I don’t feel obligated to read everything on the list. But I do like to keep things tidy. After all, so many books, so little time! I realize this more with each passing year. I can afford to be picky about what’s on my TBR list. Factors for removal can include a book’s premise, reviews from friends or strangers, length, or any other arbitrary reason. A reason for removing one book might not be applied to another. I can be ruthless but I’m not too concerned. Even if I’ve mistakenly axed a great read, there are dozens more to fill its space. It’s almost frivolous to even bother with these removals but I like feeling that I made some effort toward getting the list under control 😉 I start with the books that have been on the list the longest and work my way through. Here are the books that didn’t survive the cut:

  1. Lolita – I tried it a couple summers ago, read maybe 50 pages, couldn’t get into it. I know it’s a great classic but that’s the only reason it’s on the list. I’m not at all compelled to read it, so good-bye. 
  2. The Great Reset – I bought this in an angry fit of book buying around the time it was first released (in 2010, the library had offered me three jobs but I couldn’t accept any of them due to scheduling). I regretted it immediately afterwards but have been holding onto it since then. Now it’s probably even less relevant to me. I’m finally going to pass it on. 
  3. Reading Lolita in Tehran – Another book on the list because I bought it, almost six years ago, from Shakespeare and Co. The premise sounds fascinating but a few times I tried to read it and it didn’t captivate me. Now after reading other reviews, I’m in no rush to read it. I’ll keep the book (it has a stamp!) but I’m taking it off the TBR list. 
  4. Ballad of the Whiskey Robber – Added last year on recommendation from a fellow WWOOFer. Doesn’t interest me much. 
  5. Internal Time – At one point I wanted to learn about this topic, but now I’ve improved my own sleep schedule so I don’t really care anymore 😛
  6. The Lusiads – A poem from the 1500s? How did this make it onto my list in the first place?! I think the story sounded good to me. I must not have noticed the form. 
  7. The Letters of Edward Gorey and Peter F. Neumeyer – Not sure why this was on the list in the first place…I don’t really do letters.
  8. Corpalism – Recommended to me by a new-at-the-time Goodreads friend, I added it because I didn’t want to offend. Removing now cos it’s too long of a book for a story I have no interest in (and I’m no longer friends with that person :P) 
  9. Hawthorn and Child – After rereading the premise and the review that made me think I would like it, I no longer think I would like it much. 
  10. Sleep Donation – It looks okayyyyy, not something I’d usually read, but I think I mostly added it because of the cover. If perhaps there weren’t hundreds of other books I’d rather read, I’d give it a go. 
  11. The Three – I liked the premise but not the format. 
  12. Fangirl – John Green liked it and so did many other people, but I’m not sure why I ever added it to the list.
  13. Asleep – I tried reading it a few months ago, couldn’t get it into it, should have removed it then. 

So I didn’t clear out too many…Does it even make a difference if I only reduced the list by ~3%?! But at least I got to browse through all the books and remind myself of all the amazing looking stories I want to read! Have I made any big mistakes in axing these books? Do you ever clear out your TBR pile?

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