Category Archives: Book Haul / TBR

Book Haul 6.18

After last month’s successful goal-reaching, I knew failure was imminent. And here it is. Despite my 2018 goal of acquiring no more than 3 books per month, I’m hauling more than 3 books… again. But I have no regrets this time, because I’ve been keeping up with reading these new books and mostly loving them.

As always, the titles are linked to my full reviews in case you’re interested in seeing what I thought about these books.

Here’s what’s new on my shelves this month:

  1. The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware. This book came out at the very end of May and I received my copy in the very beginning of June. I read it right away because I just can’t resist Ruth Ware’s novels, although this one turned out to be the biggest disappointment for me among her oeuvre. Despite the deliciously creepy atmosphere, the mystery was totally predictable and pretty low-stakes. I’m not ready to quit Ware’s books yet, but I’m definitely hoping for better luck next time. I rated this book 3 stars.
  2. Not That Bad ed. by Roxane Gay. This is a nonfiction collection of essays written by thirty women who have something to say about rape culture. This book has all the punch and social commentary that I loved when I read Gay’s memoir, Hunger, but it also features a wide variety of writing structures and styles that I liked a lot more than Gay’s prose. Every story in this book is unique and important, and there wasn’t a single essay I disliked, though there were a few that stood out as particularly strong. I absolutely recommend this book: for women. For men. For the world, etc. I rated this book 5 stars.
  3. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang. Here is my Book of the Month Club selection from June. Sort of. I actually chose The Anomaly, which I will be reading in July, but I ended up swapping with my mom. I was totally fine with that, because I’ve really been in a rare romance novel mood this month, and I’d heard lots of good things about this one, which features an autistic heroine. I flew through this book and enjoyed reading it, but a few things bothered me. (Not the autism. I thought that aspect was handled very well.) I rated this book 3 stars.
  4. When I Hit You by Meena Kandasamy. The Bailey’s Women’s Fiction Prize consisted of a pretty attractive longlist this year, and even though the winner has already been announced I’m still interested in picking up some of the nominees I haven’t made time for yet. This is one of the titles from the shortlist, a novel about spousal abuse that takes place in India. I mean, I was expecting it to be good, but it’s a powerful literary masterpiece and I loved it. I rated this book 5 stars.
  5. The Hating Game by Sally Thorne. Another romance novel. The Kiss Quotient left me wanting something more, and even though these characters were less impressive than Hoang’s, this book did deliver. It’s not without it’s flaws and does require some suspension of disbelief, but it lacked the problematic details that pulled me out of The Kiss Quotient and so I ended up liking this one more. In any case, it was a quick read that helped combat a reading slump. I rated this book 4 stars.


That’s my list. I was pretty lax on trying to stick to my 3-book goal, so I’m actually surprised this haul isn’t longer. I hate not meeting goals, but this was not a bad month. It’s the first time all year that I’ve read every book as I acquired it, so even though I bought more than I should have I still managed to shrink my TBR. I’m calling that a win. Also, even though a couple of these did not live up to my expectations, none of them were complete duds– another win. I’ve been having a pretty excellent reading month, and I’m excited to share my complete wrap-up with you soon, because I read even more than these five books this month.

What titles did you pick up in June? Have you read any of these books?


The Literary Elephant


Book Haul 5.18

I am shocked to say that for the second time in 5 months I have achieved my goal of acquiring 3 books (or less) per month. I was actually on the fence about whether or not I would make it this month because I ordered a few extra books toward the end, but according to my shipping info I won’t have to worry about hauling them until June– which means May has been a phenomenal success. It’s probably been about two years since I’ve hauled less than three books in a month, which is why my TBR shelves are a catastrophic mess. But this month, I’m back on track.

Here’s what’s new on my shelves in May:

  1. Still Lives by Maria Hummel. Book of the Month Club has some phenomenal selections sometimes, so it’s always a struggle for me to just pick one every month without worrying that I’m judging wrong and missing a great read, but I’ve been doing pretty well this year about sticking to one per month and it feels great to be able to finish reading my book within the month, and check out more books later on if the reviews look tempting. For May I chose Still Lives, an art-filled mystery novel about a missing woman who painted herself as dead women. I was attracted to the possibility of a feminist slant in this one, but unfortunately didn’t find much to excite me on that account. I am, however, pleased with myself for reading this book within the month, and I didn’t have a bad time reading it. You can click the title to see my full review.
  2. The Outsider by Stephen King. This is a brand new King release this month, so of course I pre-ordered it. (The fact that there may come a time in my life when Stephen King is no longer publishing new novels is one of my greatest sorrows.) I have heard that The Outsider is more of a crime novel than his usual brand of horror, which seems a little less exciting to me, but I am still looking forward to picking this one up anyway. If the cover is anything to judge by, it should be still be a creepily wonderful book, and I don’t want to know any more about the plot before I start.


That’s it. That’s all I brought in new this month. I’m almost positive I’ll go over my 3-book goal in June because I was expecting one more of my orders to arrive within May, but for now I’m really happy with this list. New books are awesome, but I definitely feel better when I can actually keep up with them. I did manage to read more unread books than I acquired this month, so yay!

What was your favorite May release? Anything you’re excited about coming up in June?


The Literary Elephant

TBR 5.29.18

This year I’ve been assigning myself 5-book TBRs as I need them, to help me stay organized without the anxiety of a deadline at the end of each month. I haven’t been going through these TBRs as fast as I envisioned, because I’m still reading borrowed books and subscription box books outside of these lists, but they do help me keep some of my own unread books from falling through the cracks.

I’m just finishing up the last book  (Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood) from my previous TBR, which means it’s time to plan my next 5-book set. Here are my next priorities:

  1. Circe by Madeline Miller. I bought the UK edition of this book in April (with some serious cover lust), and I’ve heard such interesting things about it that it’s time to pick it up. I went through a long Greek and Roman mythology phase in school, but I haven’t been keeping in touch with those characters very well since I graduated. And Circe is not a character that I’ve ever paid a lot of attention to specifically, so I’m eager to see Miller’s take on her and the way that Circe will connect with names I’m more familiar with.
  2. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hide by Robert Louis Stevenson. I’m falling behind on my 12 classics to read in 2018, and I’m sad about it. I love classics, in the same way that I love jogging: it’s hard to convince myself to get started, but once I start I’m fine, and I’m always happier for finishing. Last summer I read and enjoyed Stevenson’s Treasure Island, but I think this novel will be more my type. I know only the barest details about The Strange Case but I’m anticipating creepy and psychological aspects, which I really like.
  3. A Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin is a book I started in 2017 and haven’t gotten around to finishing yet. I started reading it just before taking on a huge amount of work hours last fall and just didn’t have the attention to spare for a book of this size (over 1k pages) at the time. But I was really enjoying it and I am planning to finish reading the rest of the Song of Ice and Fire fantasy series (Game of Thrones!) this year (this is the 3rd book of 5 published) so it’s time to get back to it. I’m going to try to pick up where I left off (I’m only about 1/4 of the way through), but if I find that it’s hard to remember what was happening I will start over.
  4. The Oracle Year by Charles Soule. This is a recent Book of the Month Club book (an April selection) that I haven’t gotten around to yet. I ordered the maximum number of books in April to treat myself for my birthday, but the box arrived late and life got in the way. Regardless, I’m still looking forward to this sci-fi novel that deals with prophecy, and I need to make a dent in my BOTM backlog ASAP.
  5. Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. Here is the sequel to Illuminae, which I read last month. I kind of wanted to just dive right in and binge the series, but it didn’t happen. This is another sci-fi book, though it’s YA and it’s narrated entirely through short, varied data files. The unusual narration is what originally drew me to this series, and honestly if I had known about the zombie disease and the wonky AI system, I probably wouldn’t have picked it up– but the first book worked for me, and I have high hopes for the second.

TBR 5.29.18

And that’s my stack, which mainly what I’ll be reading in the near future. As usual, I have some other books I’ll also be reading in the meantime– I’ve got 2 books checked out from the library right now, and 3 more borrowed from friends and fam. Plus there will be new BOTM selections coming up in a couple of days. But an enormous TBR is par for the course, right? What kind of book lover doesn’t occasionally worry about being buried alive under their growing TBR piles? (If your TBR list is manageable, please share your magic!)

Anyone else feel like monthly TBRs just get you down? What do you do instead? (And what are you reading next, btw?)


The Literary Elephant

Book Haul 4.18

April is my birthday month, so I didn’t bother expecting to stick to my 3-book buying rule. (So far I’ve met that goal only once in 2018, but there’s still time.) It’s been fun picking up way more books that I needed this month, but it has also reminded me of why the 3-book rule is in place: I’m starting to feel overwhelmed again about the unread books on my shelves. I think May will be a very different sort of month for me as a result, but before we get there, these are the new books on my shelf in April:

  1. In March I bought (and read) 6 books from the new Penguin Modern collection, and loved them enough to buy 6 more in April. I have not read any of this new batch yet, and all I know about them is: most of these authors were familiar to me, they cover a range of fiction and nonfiction topics, and they’re about 60 pages each (which is why I’m counting all 6 as one book here). I’ll provide more info in my upcoming reviews, but for now I’ll just list my new titles: Notes on Nationalism by George Orwell, Lance by Vladimir Nabokov, The Breakthrough by Daphne du Maurier, Vigilante by John Steinbeck, Food by Gertrude Stein, and Why I Am Not Going to Buy a Computer by Wendell Berry.
  2. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. A classic, a birthday gift, and a recommendation from a friend. It’s been years since I read Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men and lately it’s bothering me that he has other great works I haven’t checked out yet. This one focuses on the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl in the 1930’s, a piece of American’s history that has always interested me.
  3. Origin by Dan Brown. Another birthday gift. My grandma has been sharing the books in this series with me for years, and I think part of the reason she was so eager to pick this one up for my birthday is because she wants to read it herself. I’ve already read this one so I can pass it on to her. This one is typical Robert Langdon, but while I still enjoy the plots of this series I am outgrowing their narrative style. A mixed-thoughts review will be coming soon.
  4. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski. The last of my birthday gifts. I’ve heard some interesting things about this book over the years, but all I remember at present is that Stephen King recommends it. I’m a big King fan so I thought I’d give this one a try. I think it’s supposed to be kind of creepy, so I’m planning to read this one in October.
  5. I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman. I’m a sucker for discounts and Barnes and Noble exclusive editions. This is the third B&N exclusive that I bought in March, though it didn’t arrive until April. It’s been years since I’ve read a Gayle Forman book, but I have liked what I’ve read and this newest novel features four lost souls helping each other find their way.  Plus the cover looks perfect for spring, and now that the snow is finally gone here it finally feels like spring.
  6. Circe, by M Miller. I’ve heard some great things about this book and I do love Greek mythology. I caved and bought the beautiful UK edition, which is possibly the prettiest book on my shelf to date. I was hoping to read this one within the month but it just arrived days ago and I haven’t had time yet. I’m planning to get to it in May.
  7. The Girl Who Smiled Beads by Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil. Here is one of my April Book of the Month selections. I let myself break my one-BOTM-book-per-month rule for 2018 because birthdays only come once a year and what better (self-)gift than books? This one is a memoir, a genre I’ve been especially enjoying this year. This one follows an African girl through disaster in Rawanda and eventually to the US as she tries to move on from the war in her past.
  8. Our Kind of Cruelty by Araminta Hall. My second April BOTM selection is a Gillian Flynn-approved thriller set to release in May. I like early finished copies and I loved Flynn’s books, so this seemed like an obvious choice. But I read this one already and didn’t actually like it much. It’s about a weird sex-game gone wrong, but it was more than the plot that went wrong for me with this one. (Click the title to see my full review.)
  9. The Oracle Year by Charles Soule. And this is the April BOTM selection I was most excited for, a sci-fi drama about a man who wakes up one morning with certain prophecies about the future. I’m really bummed that I didn’t read this one within the month, but my BOTM box arrived so late in April that I only picked up the one that I thought would be the fastest read, and I decided to save this one for a time when I could read it more leisurely. I’m hoping that’ll be really soon now.
  10. The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner. I mentioned in March’s book haul that I’ve been in a mood for some YA fantasy, and while I haven’t actually read much of that lately, this craving has still been influencing my book buying. Here’s a first-in-a-series YA fantasy that I know absolutely nothing about other than the series has been getting pretty high reviews. Also it’s won an award, which seems promising.
  11. The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken. I don’t know much about the premise of this book either, but I do know it’s a completed trilogy that I’ve had my eye on for a while, and it’s becoming a movie soon. This is probably the next YA fantasy I’ll read, and hopefully that’ll happen soon because I feel a bad habit in the making, of buying rather than reading when I’m in a certain reading mood. That seems counterproductive.
  12. Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake. Same fantasy-craving reasoning, although I do know a bit more about the premise of this one. Three princesses must battle each other for the throne of their kingdom. I believe these sisters possess different kinds of magic, and they’re trying to kill each other subtly rather than the usual brutal duel-to-the-death stuff. This is the first book in a trilogy that’s going to end later this year, so I’m hoping to get on board before the final book is released.


And that’s a wrap. 12 (technically 17) new books living with me now, and I’ve read 2 of them. I wish that I could have read every single one of these books in April because these are the books I’ve been excited about lately (and also because my TBR is feeling out of control again). But April was kind of a disappointing reading month for me (wrap-up coming tomorrow) and these new books are just staring me down now, making me feel guilty for buying more than I could handle. New books are exciting, and I’m ending the month 90% happy with my purchases, but… also with renewed determination to stick to my 3-book goal next month so I can read as I go instead of letting things pile up.

Which new books did you buy or read this month? Have you read any from this list?


The Literary Elephant

Book Haul 3.18

New books for March! My goal this year is 3 books per month, maximum; I achieved that goal in February, but I gave in to temptation in March and went way overboard. :/ Here are the most recent additions to my (overflowing) shelves:

  1. Rainbirds by Clarissa Goenawan. This is my Book of the Month Club selection for March. There were some great choices this month, but again I succeeded in limiting myself to one selection. (I swear the month started out on such a good note, I had no idea I was in for such book-buying weakness later on.) I even read it within the month! It’s a sort of mystery/grief sketch of one Japanese man uncovering the secrets surrounding his sister’s untimely death.
  2. Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. I had a 20% off coupon on the day this one released (a YA fantasy with an entirely non-white cast, the first book in a new series), which seemed like a sign. It’s surprisingly easy to find “signs” that I should buy a book. I don’t think I’ve bought any YA books this year, and I’ve hardly read any– but this one looked like a must. This is my current read and I’m certain I’ll finish it within the month; look at me go, reading my new books promptly! Review will be up next week.
  3. Penguin Moderns. I saw Ariel Bissett talking about this new collection of modern classics on Instagram and I had to check them out. They’re such beautiful little samplers of classic/influential writers from the 1900s, perfectly collectible with a nice range of content. I immediately wanted to read about half of the collection, but I settled on 6 to start and told myself I could buy more if I read and loved these first. I’m counting these as one book here (they’re only about 60 pages apiece so all 6 of them together is about the length of one book). I did manage to read all 6 this month. Here are the reviews: Letter From Birmingham Jail, Create Dangerously, The Distance of the Moon, The Missing Girl, Piers of the Homeless Night, and The Problem That Has No Name.
  4. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett. I found this hardcover copy in the bargain books section at Barnes and Noble on the day I picked up my parents from the airport. Long story short, they didn’t want to just be picked up from the airport, they thought they should run a bunch of errands as long as they were already out of the house and had a “chauffeur”, so I spent eight hours driving this day and I’ll be honest, when I had a chance to step in to a bookstore I didn’t try very hard to resist even though I already had my three books for this month. I feel kind of bad about not sticking to my allotted number of books (and carefully selecting titles I know I’ll read soon), but I needed a pick-me-up this day so I bought this family saga lit fic novel for cheap.
  5. The Circle by Dave Eggers. After I surpassed my 3 book limit, I let myself go a little book-buying crazy. I’ve been wanting to read The Circle for a long time, but really I didn’t need to own it this month and I picked it up in the store because the color of the cover fit my mood for the day (it’s a bright coral red, if you were wondering). I have no idea when I’ll get around to this one, and all I remember about the synopsis is that it’s sci-fi, and it revolves around some internet company that has access to a lot of private information and is maybe trying to take over the internet or do something shady?
  6. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I did have a coupon when I bought this one, and I bought it in store because every time I looked at it online I wasn’t sure what the size of the big floppy paperback I wanted actually was and I was afraid I’d accidentally buy the mass market paperback or something. I’ve really been in the mood for fantasy lately and I’ve heard that this one is superb. I’m a little hesitant to start because I know there’s no prospective publication date for the last book yet, and also I’m still in the middle of A Song of Ice and Fire. But I’m really excited for this one.
  7. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. I picked this one up kind of randomly, but as soon as I read the synopsis (I actually didn’t get any farther into it than the uncontrollable mind-reading aspect) I couldn’t walk out of the store without buying this one. As I said, I’ve been in a fantasy mood and I was exercising no restraint. This is a YA fantasy trilogy by an author I’ve been interested in but haven’t read yet.
  8. Pierce Brown’s Red Rising Sons of Ares by Pierce Brown, Rik Hoskin, and Eli Powell. Back in the beginning of the month when I thought I could limit myself to 3 books, I was planning to order this one at the very end of the month (with a coupon, because saving money) so that it wouldn’t arrive until April, when I was expecting to go over 3 books anyway for my birthday month. But I ended up ordering it as soon as it was released on the 16th. At least I did read it right away (I love Pierce Brown’s Red Rising series) instead of growing my TBR shelf even more. This is a graphic novel prequel to the Red Rising series.
  9. Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I was on the fence about buying this one, and if I had been closer to my 3-book goal I would have waited. I’m pretty sure I’m going to love this series, but in all honesty I haven’t even started the first book yet (Illuminae) and this is the third. But there was a good deal on the Barnes and Noble exclusive edition and, as you can see, the entire second half of this month was a new-book free-for-all for me. Obsidio is the third book in a YA sci-fi trilogy with a uniquely graphic narration style that uses different sorts of documents and files etc. to tell its story.
  10. The Illustrated A Brief History of Time & The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking. Stephen Hawking died this month and it reminded me that I wanted to read his A Brief History of Time, a nonfiction science book. I found this cool illustrated edition that’ll be a great coffee table book (someday when I have a coffee table) and in the meantime I think the pictures will make it easier to read. Science was my least favorite subject in school, but I think mostly because I hated the hands-on part of it. I avoided chemistry like the plague. But I am interested in learning about the world and how things work, and reading beyond my usual comfort zone, so I have high hopes.


I’m pleased with myself for reading 3 (soon to be 4) of these 9 within the month; if I had stuck to my original 3-book goal, I would’ve made a dent in my TBR shelf this month. Instead I read 5 (soon to be 6) of my own unread books this month and added 5 unread books, which means my TBR shelf will be down only 1 book this month and not until I finish Children of Blood and Bone tonight or tomorrow. That’s the real goal of my 3-book hauls this year, to lower the number of owned, unread books on my shelves; so I guess I’m glad that at least I’m not ending the month in a worse position than I started. But better luck next time, as they say.

Have you read any of these books? What new books did you pick up this month?


The Literary Elephant

TBR 3.2.18

In case you missed it, I’m trying this new thing in 2018 where I set a 5-book TBR every time I finish the last one, rather than setting a monthly TBR and letting my anxiety grow for four weeks because of the time constraint. This is only my second TBR of the year so far, but I have been reading borrowed books and other things in the midst of working on my first TBR, so I have read more than 5 books since I started, never fear. In fact, in the time since I set my last 5-book TBR, I read 16 books.

Things like library books, buddy reads, and new subscription box books are not items I’m including in my TBRs this year– instead I’m only listing the books that I have no other deadlines for. So these won’t necessarily be the next five books I read, but I will read all five of these before setting a new TBR.

I don’t anticipate this one taking as long to finish because I think I’ll have fewer conflicts now that the year is farther underway, but the timing of finishing books isn’t bothering me as much with this new system anyway; I’m more focused on what I’m reading and whether I’m enjoying it, than how long it’s taking me to read something or finish a TBR list. It’s only been a couple of months, but I’m really loving this new system.

I’m currently finishing up the 5th book from my last TBR, and plotting what to read next. Here are the titles I’m looking at:

  1. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. It’s time that I read a true crime novel. The closest I’ve ever gotten to that genre is Erik Larson’s The Devil in the White City, which I loved but was not focused entirely on the crime. I want to branch out more this year, delve deeper into reading pools I’ve only skimmed the surface of. I’ve heard this one’s a classic of its genre, so this is where I’ll start. I believe it follows a murder case from the 50’s or 60’s in the American midwest.
  2. The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. Here is a new release from February that I’ve been really excited about. I have not yet read any of Kristin Hannah’s books, though I own The Nightingale, which has been gathering dust on my TBR shelf for a year. I’ve heard such great things about her writing, but I’m rarely in the mood for WWII fiction these days, and this new historical fiction book about solitude and abuse in the wilderness of Alaska sounds much more intriguing to me. And if I like it, hopefully I’ll get around to The Nightingale that much sooner.
  3. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. I’ve had my eye on this classic Gothic horror novel since reading Bronte’s Jane Eyre at about this time last year. Somehow I haven’t gotten around to it yet, so I added it to my list of 12 classics to read in 2018. I did originally schedule my 12 classics month by month, but this is only the second book on the list and I was still reading my January classic in February so I’m a little off schedule. I’m still trying to figure out how to fit a few monthly goals in with this new TBR system, but I’m confident that I can catch up with my classics list. I’m eager to start this one, which features some sort of mystery about the male lead’s first wife, who is maybe haunting or hiding in his giant old house and terrifying his new wife? I’ve forgotten the exact synopsis, but it sounded creepy and psychological with a touch of romance.
  4. Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman. This is a YA sci-fi book that drew my attention with its unique narrative formatting. I like unique formats, and the inside of this book looks like artwork. Artwork with a focus on words. I’ve seen great reviews for this story and the third (and final, I believe) book in the series is releasing next week. I want to be on board that train, but I have to start by seeing if I like the first book.All I remember about the story is that two characters with some sort of shared history are awake on a spaceship that’s headed for disaster.
  5. The Power by Naomi Alderman. I’m working on my BOTM backlog, which mostly consists of “extras” that I added to my monthly boxes in 2017, but there are some (like this one) that I just didn’t have time to get around to in the month that I chose them and it’s time that I do. This was my October selection and I’ve been so curious to read it but just… haven’t. And that’s what TBRs are for. This one’s a lit fic novel about a swapped gender dynamic– women wield (some sort of electrical?) power through their hands.

TBR 3.2.18

I’m excited for this list, and I really don’t think it will take me as long as the first one did. But, timing aside, I’m anticipating some quality reads in my future. It’s really fun trying to prioritize my giant Goodreads TBR into bite-sized 5-book lists, even if they do end up with all the fall color vibes at the wrong time of the year. :/

Have you read any of these books? What are you reading next?


The Literary Elephant

Book Haul 2.18

New books for February! I set myself a hard goal this year of acquiring only 3 new books per month, and I suppose if I couldn’t make it happen in the shortest month of the year then I’d really be in bad shape. Fortunately, I persevered, and am now sharing with you my smallest book haul in over a year. I’m PROUD. (And also so very tempted to celebrate by buying new books.) But for this month, here’s what I got:

  1. King Lear by William Shakespearre. I’m on the hunt for my favorite Shakespeare play, so after a few recommendations I made sure to add this one to my list of classics to read in 2018. I was originally planning to read it in December, but I’ve changed my TBR system and I’m pretty interested in giving this one a try so I might pick it up early. In any case, I’m ready to read it now that I have a nice Pelican copy. I don’t know anything about the plot of this one, but that’s the way I like to read, so please don’t spoil me.
  2. The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller. This one is my February Book of the Month Club selection, and I did manage to read it within the month! I had my eye on four of the selections this time, and I do have borrowed copies of a couple of the other choices in my possession at the moment, but I’m so proud of myself for facing the temptation head-on and sticking to my resolution of only choosing one in my BOTM box. I’m only supposed to be selecting one per month until I’m caught up with my BOTM backlog from last year, so this month was a success in that regard, as well. Follow the link for my review of this one, I had a great time reading it! It’s a sort of sci-fi/fantasy novel with historical and feminist elements, but mostly its a whimsical, wild ride about chasing dreams.
  3. The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. I guess I did buy a second BOTM selection, but not through BOTM. I bought a regular copy of this one after its release date for the cool cover details that BOTM generally doesn’t include, but also just because I was planning to get this one with a coupon through another bookseller before the February BOTM choices were announced. And I’m glad I did, because this book is GORGEOUS and will look perfect on my shelf next to The Nightingale, which admittedly I haven’t read yet. But I’m excited to read both! This one sounds like a hard-hitting story about abuse and the Alaskan wilderness, and I’ve seen nothing but good reviews. I’m planning to read this one in the next week or two.


That’s my entire list of new books for February. It’s short, but I think I made some good choices, and I’ll definitely read all of these within the year. I’ve only read one of three so far, but I did read four previously unread books from my shelves this month, so even though two of these are still unread I am actually down one book on my owned-books TBR this month, which also feels good. Success on so many levels.

Which new books did you pick up in February? And what’s good in new YA? I didn’t see much that caught my eye for YA in February, but I’m looking forward to some March releases!


The Literary Elephant