Top Ten Tuesday: Top 10 books on my TBR list for fall 2018

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Books On My Fall 2018 TBR. So much to choose from! It’s hard to narrow my list down to just 10… but here are ten books, mostly new and upcoming releases, that I’m really looking forward to reading during the next few months. (Click on any of the book cover images to see larger versions.)

 

  • Elevation by Stephen King: Never a bad time for new Stephen King!
  • Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness: A new story in the world of the All Souls books.
  • Lethal White by Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling): This series is so good!
  • Someone Like Me by M. R. Carey: Definitely up for a new book by the author of The Girl With All The Gifts.
  • Pride by Ibi Zoboi: Sounds like an amazing, fresh retelling of Pride and Prejudice.
  • Someday by David Levithan: I loved Every Day; can’t wait for more of the story.
  • Dry by Neal Shusterman: Having just discovered Scythe a few months ago, I’m dying to try more by this author.
  • And Their Ocean Was Our Sky by Patrick Ness: Sounds like an upside-down version of Moby Dick, told from the whales’ perspective. Maybe? The synopses I’ve read aren’t crystal clear, and I only just realized now that this is an illustrated book. Maybe a graphic novel? I actually have no idea, but I’m intrigued anyway.
  • Pulp by Robin Talley: This author’s books are always powerful, and the premise sounds fascinating.
  • The Sisters of the Winter Wood by Rena Rossner: Folklore/fairy tale — sounds amazing, and I love the cover!

What books are you most excited to read this fall? Please share your TTT link!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten totally binge-worthy TV shows

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Bingeworthy TV Shows/Movies. Yes, I’m an avid read, but I do love my TV binges too! Here are ten shows that are well worth an obsessive binge — some old, some in their current runs, all entertaining as hell.

In no particular order:

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • The Walking Dead
  • The Good Place
  • Claws
  • Veronica Mars
  • iZombie
  • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
  • Grace & Frankie
  • Harlots
  • Poldark

What shows do you love to binge? Please share your TTT link!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Popular Books that Lived Up to the Hype

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Popular Books that Lived Up to the Hype.

I’ll start my list with the book I’m reading right now:

1) The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas: This book got ALL the buzz, but I haven’t been reading as much YA lately and decided to pass. Then I saw the movie trailer a few weeks ago, and realized just how much I was missing out on. I picked up the book yesterday, and have read about 350 pages so far. I can’t put it down — it’s that good!

2) Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: Yes, a ton of people have jumped on the bandwagon ever since the TV show premiered. But it so lives up to all the hype, and remains my favorite books and series.

3) Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (review): Such a sweet, adorable love story! And I thought the movie was terrific too.

4) Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (review): I actually hadn’t heard that much about this book before I read it… but once I did and fell in love with the characters, I started to see people gushing over the story everywhere.

5) Cinder by Marissa Meyer (review): Somehow, just based on the cover, I decided this book wasn’t for me, and I resisted reading it for a really long time. I don’t know what finally convinced me to read it, but I was immediately hooked once I did. And I guess it’s a good thing that I held off as long as I did, because I was able to read the first three books straight through once I started!

6) The Martian by Andy Weir (review): Here’s one that I just knew I had to read once I heard about it! A true word-of-mouth success story — and absolutely worth all the buzz.

7) Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (review): Everyone said that this one would bring on the tears. Everyone was right.

8) Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant (review): I wasted a lot of breath telling people that I just wasn’t interested in these books. Silly me. I LOVED the entire series, and just wish there were more books set in this world.

9) Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (review): Another one leading to buckets of tears. Just breathtaking. And I cry every time I read it.

10) A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (review): This book was everywhere… and was just delightful, exactly as promised!

 

What are the best hyped, buzzy books that you’ve read recently? Please share your TTT links!

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Top Ten Tuesday: My top ten books of 2017

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Top Ten Favorite Books Of 2017.

According to Goodreads, I gave a 5-star rating to 76 books in 2017. SEVENTY-SIX. That’s a lot. So how to narrow down my top books to just 10? Here are the books I consider the best of the best from my 2017 reading — not necessarily books published in 2017; simply the books I read this past year that I loved the most. (And okay, I cheated a bit and snuck in more than 10!)

Note: If you want to know more about any of the books mentioned here, click on the links to see my reviews.

1) Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant (review)

2) La Belle Sauvage (The Book of Dust, #1) by Philip Pullman (review)

3) The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden (review)

4) A whole bunch of books by Gail Carriger! (reviews here and here)

5) How to Stop Time by Matt Haig (review)

6) Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zevin (review)

7) Love and Other Consolation Prizes by Jamie Ford (review)

8) Leviathan Wakes (review)/Caliban’s War/Abaddon’s Gate (review) by James S. A. Corey

9) A first introduction to the world of Georgette Heyer (reviews here, here, here, and here)

10) Two classics that I finally tackled (and adored):
(Great Expectations reading update here)

 

What were your favorite reads of 2017? Please leave me your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten books I loved reading with my kiddos

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a new top 10 theme each week. While the “official” topic is slightly different, I thought I’d focus on books that I loved reading with my kids. Now, bear in mind that both (sadly) have outgrown the reading-aloud phase, but I did diligently read to both of them every single day from infancy onward.

First, here are some books that were perfect for my sweeties in the baby and toddler days:

1. Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown — so perfectly sweet.

2. ALL books by Sandra Boynton: I especially loved The Going to Bed Book, But Not the Hippopotamus, Moo Baa La La La — but they’re really all terrific. And years later, I can (and do) still quote them by heart!

3. The poetry of Winnie the Pooh: A good friend gave me a beautiful set of the Winnie the Pooh books when my daughter was born, and what we ended up especially loving were the poems in the books. Lines and Squares is amazing!

4. Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks from A to Z: You haven’t lived until you’ve read this book with a 2-year-old! The adults in the house were on the floor completely incapacitated by laughter the first time we read this with my son, who tried his best, in his adorable 2-year-old voice, to repeat the names of all of the very silly cars. (The 2-year-old is now 15 and I’m sure would deny having any part in this, but I have video proof!)

5. Tumble Tower – a wonderful picture book that we loved to pieces.

6. Tumble Bumble – Unrelated to Tumble Tower, it’s just such a wonderful sing-songy read, and so much fun.

As the kiddos got older, we moved on to chapter books and book series, and here are some we loved:

7. Harry Potter — of course! I read the entire series out loud to my son when he was about 7 or 8. I was so proud of myself! (He loved it too.) We had such a good time with reading and discussing these books — it was an amazing experience.

8. The Hobbit — another fun read-aloud.

9. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman – I read this one with my daughter. She was definitely old enough to read it on her own, but the concepts involved are pretty complex, and it was a good choice for a book to share.

10. The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede — The dragon and princess trope turns upside down in these magical tales. Book #1 is really the best, but all make for a great shared read.

What books did you love reading with the kids in your life… or which would you want to read with your future kids? Please leave me your link!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I’m building a Book Blog Meme Directory, and need your help! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten haunting books for Halloween chills

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Happy Halloween!

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is a Halloween freebie!

This year, I think I’ll focus on ghost stories… some read recently, some longer ago, but all good choices to send a little shiver down the spine

1. The Winter Ghosts by Kate Mosse

2. The Night Strangers by Chris Bohjalian

3. Thornhill by Pam Smy (review)

4. Bag of Bones by Stephen King

5. The Uninvited by Cat Winters (review)

6. The Dead Fathers Club by Matt Haig (review)

7. The Vanishing by Wendy Webb (review)

8. The Uninvited Guests by Sadie Jones (review)

9. The Mystery of Grace by Charles De Lint

10. Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger

Do you have any good ghost stories to recommend? What’s on your Halloween TTT? Share your link, please, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and I’m always looking for new additions! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top ten series I NEED to READ

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is the Top Ten Series I’ve Been Meaning To Start But Haven’t. I’m pretty series-averse these days, trying not to start new series unless all volumes are already published and available. I just don’t have the patience (or attention span) to get involved in any more ongoing series with no end in sight!

Here are some series that I’ve yet to start (but want to), and some that I’ve started but not finished.

 

On the new to me side:

1) Old Man’s War by John Scalzi

2) Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

3) Temeraire by Naomi Novik

4) The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss

5) Rosemary & Rue by Seanan McGuire

6) And speaking of Seanan McGuire, I still need to read the Newsflesh series by Mira Grant

 

And for series that I’ve started and need to get back to:

7) The Dark Tower by Stephen King – I’ve read 3 books so far.

8) Locke & Key by Joe Hill – I’ve read all but the last volume! How crazy is that?

9) The Expanse by James S. A. Corey – I’ve barely made a dent, but I love what I’ve read (2 books) so far.

10) Poldark by Winston Graham – I think I’ve read 5 out of 12.

What book series are you dying to read? Share your link, please, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

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Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and I’m always looking for new additions! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten creepy, gross, scary horror books for getting in the Halloween mood

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Happy (almost) Halloween!

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is a Halloween freebie!

I’ve decided to focus on great books to scare or give the willies. To mix things up, I’m highlighting five books that I’ve read, and five from my TBR list:

Icky, squicky, creepy, scary books that I’ve read (with links to my reviews):

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NOS4A2 by Joe Hill (review)

The Girl with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey (review)

The Dead Lands by Benjamin Percy (review)

Breed by Chase Novak (review)

Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix (review)

Creepy, chilling, horrifying-sounding books that I really want to read:

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Red Moon by Benjamin Percy

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Wraith by Joe Hill

A Love Like Blood by Marcus Sedgwick

Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day by Seanan McGuire

What scary books do you love to recommend? What’s on your Halloween TTT? Share your link, please, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out my regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and I’m always looking for new additions! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top ten character names for my imaginary babies and pets

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Ten Characters I’d Name A Child/Dog/Cat/Car/Etc. After — which strikes me as a really funny topic, but, hey, I’m game!

As I already have all the kids I intend to have and am not in the market for any fur (or fin) babies, I’ll just focus on character names which I think are cute or clever or cool or funny enough to become the NEXT BIG THING in baby and pet names.

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For girls:

  • Demelza – inspired by the Poldark series of books by Winston Graham
  • Marsali – inspired by Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series
  • Cosette – inspired by Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • Minerva – in honor of my favorite Hogwarts professor, thanks to Harry Potter and J. K. Rowling

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For boys:

  • Rhett – inspired by Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
  • Tyrion – inspired by A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin
  • Quentin – inspired by The Magicians by Lev Grossman
  • Roland – inspired by The Dark Tower series by Stephen King

animals-47877_1280For the non-human family members, I’d want:

  • A dog named Rollo – inspired, once again, by the Outlander series
  • Three bearded dragon lizards, named Drogon, Rhaegal, and Viserion – another inspiration from the world of GRRM
  • Two fish (preferably big ones) names Ishmael and Queequeg – inspired by Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Oops! I realize that’s more than 10…

What character names do you think would be awesome people/pet names? Share your link, please, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out my regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and I’m always looking for new additions! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top ten despicable bad guys in fiction

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Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is all about villains — fictional bad guys, TV bad guys, villains we secretly love, or any other spin on the topic.

I’m focusing on really awful fictional villains. Not the “love to hate” kind — there’s no secret love here. I just straight up despise all of these characters — no shades of gray or redeeming characteristics or hidden hearts of gold.

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My 10 most hideous, despicable villains fall into two categories — the “real” people, as in, those who inhabit our world and are merely human, albeit terrible humans, and the fantasy/otherworldy villains; who are more easily classified as evil due to their superhuman or supernatural powers.

In the non-fantasy category:

1) Black Jack Randall (Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon): A sadist who delights in inflicting terror, pain, and psychological damage.

2) Stephen Bonnet (Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon): A pirate who’s casually cruel just because. He causes so much harm to beloved characters without even blinking an eye.

3) Dolores Umbridge (Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling): I include Dolores Umbridge in the real-world section of my list because what makes her so terrible is not her magic, but her mundane cruelty. She’s a despotic bureaucrat who enjoys using her power to make others suffer, not through charms or hexes, but by wielding her authoritarian control.

It’s a lot easier, in some ways, to come up with a list of horrible villains from fantasy worlds:

4) Voldemort (Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling): He Who Must Not Be Named. You Know Who. The Dark Lord. Tom Riddle. I don’t think I need to explain this one, do I?

5) Charles Manx (NOS4A2 by Joe Hill): One of the scariest horror novels I’ve ever read features one of the scariest bad guys in fiction. Wow. It gives me the shivers to think about this book too much.

6) The Beast (The Magicians series by Lev Grossman): The Beast is a thing of horror who used to be a person, and I won’t give away more than that — but the horror caused by the Beast is really awful.

7) Sauron (Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien): As with Voldemort, I’m not sure someone who represents ultimate evil needs an explanation!

8) Queen Levana (The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Mayer): Even though Fairest offers a glimpse into Levana’s childhood and seems to provide a teeny grasp at sympathy for her, Levana is such a cruel psycho that she remains an thoroughly villainous character.

9) Joffrey Baratheon (A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin): Horrible little shit.

10) Walder Frey (A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin): Worst host ever, basically.

(Dis)honorable mention (because I ran out of room):

  • From the world of Fables, the amazing graphic novel series by Bill Willingham, come two terrible bad guys who pretty much tear worlds apart: The Adversary and Mister Dark. And because The Adversary’s true identity is a secret for quite a while, I’ll avoid spoilers and not say any more about this character.

What villains made your lists this week? Share your link, please, and I’ll come check out your top 10!

If you enjoyed this post, please consider following Bookshelf Fantasies! And don’t forget to check out my regular weekly features, Shelf Control and Thursday Quotables. Happy reading!

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Do you host a book blog meme? Do you participate in a meme that you really, really love? I host a Book Blog Meme Directory, and I’m always looking for new additions! If you know of a great meme to include — or if you host one yourself — please drop me a note on my Contact page and I’ll be sure to add your info!

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