This venture down the TBR Hole has been a long time coming. Particularly when I’ve been a little crazy with adding things to it recently. If anything it seems to be getting longer rather than shorter. So hopefully I can knock off a few forgotten books this week! Lia at Lost In A Story started this weekly post to trim down the Goodreads to-read list.
The rules are simple:
- Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
- Order on ascending date added.
- Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books. Of course, if you do this weekly, you start where you left off the last time.
- Read the synopses of the books
- Decide: keep it or should it go?
The Particular Sadness of Cake by Aimee Bender
On the eve of her ninth birthday, unassuming Rose Edelstein, a girl at the periphery of schoolyard games and her distracted parents’ attention, bites into her mother’s homemade lemon-chocolate cake and discovers she has a magical gift: she can taste her mother’s emotions in the cake. She discovers this gift to her horror, for her mother — her cheerful, good-with-crafts, can-do mother — tastes of despair and desperation. Suddenly, and for the rest of her life, food becomes a peril and a threat to Rose.
Baking is one of the joys in my life. There’s nothing like a good lemon drizzle to make the world seem brighter. I really love the idea that the things we make take on parts of ourselves. I think Bender has come up with an original concept and I would love to read it. KEEP
This Is How You Loose Her by Juno Diaz
On a beach in the Dominican Republic, a doomed relationship flounders. In the heat of a hospital laundry room in New Jersey, a woman does her lover’s washing and thinks about his wife. In Boston, a man buys his love child, his only son, a first baseball bat and glove. At the heart of these stories is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness–and by the extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own.
I finished The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao a few weeks back and I found it a little difficult to get through. There’s a lot of Spanish and eye-watering footnotes. that being said, short stories are my jam, so I’m interested to see what Diaz’s shorter fiction is like. KEEP
Vanity Fair by William Thackeray
Vanity Fair: A Novel without a Hero is a novel by William Makepeace Thackeray, first published in 1847–48, satirizing society in early 19th-century Britain. The book’s title comes from John Bunyan’s allegorical story The Pilgrim’s Progress, first published in 1678 and still widely read at the time of Thackeray’s novel. Vanity fair refers to a stop along the pilgrim’s progress: a never-ending fair held in a town called Vanity, which is meant to represent man’s sinful attachment to worldly things.
I haven’t read any classics in a while, and I’ve had this on my TBR for a while. There are a couple of really nice additions out there (Penguin, I’m looking at you) and I’m all for satire. So, I’m going to let this one stick around for a while. KEEP
Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino
“Kublai Khan does not necessarily believe everything Marco Polo says when he describes the cities visited on his expeditions, but the emperor of the Tartars does continue listening to the young Venetian with greater attention and curiosity than he shows any other messenger or explorer of his.” So begins Italo Calvino’s compilation of fragmentary urban images. As Marco tells the khan about Armilla, which “has nothing that makes it seem a city, except the water pipes that rise vertically where the houses should be and spread out horizontally where the floors should be,” the spider-web city of Octavia, and other marvelous burgs, it may be that he is creating them all out of his imagination, or perhaps he is recreating details of his native Venice over and over again, or perhaps he is simply recounting some of the myriad possible forms a city might take.
I don’t necessarily know if this will be my cup of tea, but its the second Italo Calvino on my TBR, and its there because it’s been recommended to be by more than one person. I think I’m going to read it soon for part of my MA coursework so hopefully it won’t be on the list much longer! KEEP
The Girls with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey
Melanie is a very special girl. Dr. Caldwell calls her “our little genius.”
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.
Melanie loves school. She loves learning about spelling and sums and the world outside the classroom and the children’s cells. She tells her favorite teacher all the things she’ll do when she grows up. Melanie doesn’t know why this makes Miss Justineau look sad.
I’m not really sure why, but I’m not as eager to read this book as I was before. I can’t quite put my finger on it. There are a lot of others book I want to read, and I might come back to it some day, but for now I think I’m going to take it off the TBR. GO
So the TBR shrinks (a little). There are so many books on this list that I can’t remember adding. Its interesting to see how my tastes have changed since I started my Goodreads page! How’re your TBR piles looking?