Fortuitously, talking about my slump in my August wrap-up seems to have helped a bit in motivating me to pull out of it. Thank you all for the lovely and helpful comments on that post- engaging here again is already bringing some of the excitement back to reading and blogging for me. So here’s a slow start back into my list of pending posts, with my September TBR; up next, I think I’ll dabble in some blog hopping! I might even go crazy and read something this evening! 🙂
But before I get there, here’s a look at what I’m hoping will help with my awkward slump situation:
- The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. I might as well say right off that my Spotlight post for September will feature YA books (a category, rather than a genre). YA books are typically faster reads for me, so I think leaning into some Spotlight post prep will be doubly beneficial- quick reads are great for slumps. Even better, this one’s told in verse and has a low words per page ratio, which should really help someone (me) who’s struggling to turn pages. This will be my first Acevedo book, and all I know going in is that it follows a teenage slam poet.
- Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake. Another YA, this one is on my 20 in ’20 list and is also an LGBTQ+ story (I was sad not to find time to read it in June, but September’s a good a time as any!). It follows a set of twins, one of whom is accused of raping the other’s friend. I believe it’s a story of identity and self-discovery, of family and morality.
- Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour. Another YA, another LGBTQ+ story. This one was gifted to me earlier this year by a friend who loved it, and I often agree with her bookish opinions so I have high hopes for this sapphic romace.
- An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir. The other YA title from my 20 in ’20 list. I have reservations about starting another fantasy series before I get around to finishing others I’ve already started (why is The Empire of Gold still so expensive???), and especially when I only have one of the books on hand. But high fantasy is also good for slumps and I’m mood reading these days so it’s good to have something less contemporary on the list. I think this is a romance-based fantasy, in a Roman-inspired world.
- The Only Plane in the Sky: An Oral History of 9/11 by Garrett M. Graff. For a change of pace, here’s an adult nonfiction about a fairly recent piece of history. I was lucky enough to visit the One World Trade Center and the 9/11 memorial and memorial museum in New York earlier this year before the lockdowns, so this feels like the right time to get to this book.
And that’s my list. This seems like a good plan, theoretically, but I’ll be honest and say I have no idea whether this is what my wrap-up at the end of the month will look like. I also have a few Booker Prize nominees checked out from the library that I’m *trying* to carry on with, but at this point I think I just need to go where my mood takes me if I want to be able to finish anything. I should have plenty of reading time this month, though I may have less time for blogging toward the end of September. We shall see. In any case, I am still hoping to finish ALL of the books I’ve assigned myself in these monthly 5-book TBRs before the end of the year, so it’s likely you’ll be seeing reviews for these titles from me at some point even if I don’t manage them all this month. Rest assured, adult lit readers, I won’t post entirely YA content this month even if my reading skews that way. I’ve got a few adult reviews to catch up on as well, and more Booker content on the way.
As has become tradition, I’ll include here the new September releases that are on my radar as well. I may or may not get to any of these within the month, but I will be looking out for posts and reviews because I’m excited about these!
- Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi. Contemporary fiction following a Ghanian family in Alabama. Our narrator is a scientist looking to rationalize the suffering she sees around herself. Out Sep 1st
- Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi. YA contemporary fiction told in verse, in which a teenage artist is wrongly incarcerated for a crime in his neighborhood. Out Sep 1st
- One By One by Ruth Ware. Adult thriller set at a snowed-in ski resort. Eight coworkers on a retreat gone wrong find themselves fighting for survival… from the elements, and perhaps from each other. Out Sep 8th
- Carry: A Memoir of Survival on Stolen Land by Toni Jensen. Adult nonfiction/memoir about one woman’s experience as an indigenous American, told through essays on her encounters with gun violence. Out Sep 8th.
It’s a shorter list this month, but hopefully that’ll make it feel more manageable. I already have a copy of Transcendent Kingdom thanks to Book of the Month; I’m very excited for this one after loving Gyasi’s Homegoing a few years ago (and the first BOTM copy I’ve ever seen with a special effect in the cover design- gold foil! I hope this is the start of a trend!)
Have you read any of these books, or recognize them from your own lists? Let me know in the comments!
The Literary Elephant