Cleaning Up My TBR With a Giveaway (US Only) – Down the TBR Hole #59

Posted February 15, 2020 by Lisa Mandina in CUTBR / 12 Comments

This meme was started by Lost in a Story.  Here is how it works:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books (or 20 if you keep adding like I do!)
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

1.Ring Around Rosie by Emily Pattullo:

Rebellious and unmanageable, Rosie is forced to move to the countryside with her family to escape the temptations of London life. But her propensity for trouble is not confined to the city, and Rosie is soon kidnapped by child traffickers and taken back to London, along with many other children that have been shipped into the country from abroad.

Rosie faces prostitution, the plight of others much worse off than her, as well as her own demons, and it will take the determination and cunning of her brother Ted and student journalist Martha to find her before it’s too late.

My thoughts: Nah

Verdict: Toss

2. Wild by Alex Mallory:

The forest is full of secrets, and no one understands that better than Cade. Foraging, hunting, surviving – that’s all he knows. Alone for years, Cade believes he’s the sole survivor. At least, until he catches a glimpse of a beautiful stranger…

Dara expected to find natural wonders when she set off for a spring break camping trip. Instead, she discovers a primitive boy – he’s stealthy and handsome and he might be following her. Intrigued, Dara seeks him out and sets a catastrophe in motion.

Thrust into society, Cade struggles with the realization that the life he knew was a lie. But he’s not the only one. Trying to explain life in a normal town leaves Dara questioning it.

As the media swarm and the police close in, Dara and Cade risk everything to get closer. But will the truth about Cade’s past tear them apart?

My thoughts: So, it does still kind of sound interesting.

Verdict: Keep for now

3. Confessions of the Very First Zombie Slayer by Fiona J.R. Titchenell:

The world is Cassie Fremont’s playground. Her face is on the cover of every newspaper, she has no homework, no curfew, and no credit limit, and she spends her days traveling the country with her friends, including a boy who would flirt with death just to turn her head. Life is just about perfect—except that those newspaper headlines are about her bludgeoning her crush to death with a paintball gun, she has to fight ravenous walking corpses every time she steps outside, and one of her friends is still missing, trapped somewhere in the distant, practically impassable wreckage of Manhattan. Still, Cassie’s an optimist. More prone to hysterical laughter than hysterical tears, she’d rather fight a corpse than be one, and she won’t leave a friend stranded when she can simply take her road trip to impossible new places to find her, even if getting there means admitting to that boy that she might just love him, too. Skillfully blending effective horror with unexpected humor, this diary-format novel is a fast-paced and heartwarming read.

My thoughts: Eh, as much as I like the title and cover, don’t think I’ll get to it.

Verdict: Toss

4. The Summer I Wasn’t Me by Jessica Verdi:

Lexi has a secret.

She never meant for her mom to find out. And now she’s afraid that what’s left of her family is going to fall apart for good.

Lexi knows she can fix everything. She can change. She can learn to like boys. New Horizons summer camp has promised to transform her life, and there’s nothing she wants more than to start over.

But sometimes love has its own path…

My thoughts: I think I added this because it was big in the blogosphere at the time. Not sure I’ll get around to it.

Verdict: Toss

5. The End of Feeling by Cindy C. Bennett:

Benjamin Nefer seems to have it all. He’s the most popular guy in school, the star quarterback with college scouts looking at him, his grades are near the top of his class, he can get any girl he wants . . . but he hides behind his dream life to mask the nightmare of his reality.

Charlie Austin is the new girl. Forced to move in with a bitter aunt, she only wants to protect her fragile mom from the world’s cruelty. When Benjamin sets his sights on Charlie, she’s armored against his charm—friends warned her about Benjamin’s game of pursuing and then dumping a long line of girls, not caring about the broken hearts he leaves behind. She doesn’t count on how single-minded he can be when she refuses him, or how charismatic, easing into her life through what he claims is just friendship.

Benjamin thought he could keep Charlie in the same place he keeps all girls—something to be used and then discarded. But Charlie has as many secrets as he does, secrets he’s determined to discover while keeping his own hidden. He realizes she’s the perfect girlfriend candidate . . . someone he can use to keep up the façade of a perfect life. Now he just has to keep his frozen heart from softening toward this unique girl, because if he doesn’t, his carefully constructed lies might just come thundering down around him, crushing him beneath the burden of feeling.

My thoughts: Doesn’t sound that original

Verdict: Toss

6. Reap by Casey L. Bond:

The remnants of the United States of America have been divided. From five enormous, technologically-advanced cities, the Greaters rule over the Lessers.

In the Lesser village of Orchard, things are not as perfect as Abby Kelley thinks they are. When the apple harvest draws near and the Greaters’ engineered fruits become too much for one village to handle alone, reinforcements from neighboring villages are called upon.

Having to choose between her best friend, whom she has no romantic feelings for, and mysterious newcomer Crew, Abby finds herself in the middle of a harvest that she had no intention of becoming a part of. She becomes involved in a situation that threatens the strict rule of the Greaters, and just might give the Lessers hope for a better tomorrow. But, can she help the Lessers without losing Crew?

My thoughts: It sounds interesting. But not sure if I’ll get to it.

Verdict: Toss

7. Aqua by M.A. George:

Meet Layla McKelland:

Novelist (unpublished, but cut her some slack…seventeen is a bit early to despair), Slightly neurotic introvert (Alright, let’s be honest…there’s no “slightly” about it), International Woman of Mystery, and…

Okay, just scratch the bio.

The only real “mystery” in Layla’s life is why her father has never been on the scene. Or why her mother drags Layla to a new coastal home every year.

Nothing about the latest hometown seems too newsworthy…until a routine day at the beach leaves Layla questioning whether she’s read one too many paranormal fantasy novels. The plot thickens when a random guy claims to know things about her father—a bizarre claim he backs up with an equally impossible stunt. And Layla soon finds herself on the wrong side of a mysterious attempted drowning…on her own kitchen floor.

When all is done, Layla will attest that fact is far stranger than fiction. And nothing in real life is ever as transparent as it seems…Not even water.

Especially not water.

My thoughts: Doesn’t necessarily sound that original, although I do really like the cover!

Verdict: Toss

8. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray:

Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their groundbreaking achievements. Their most astonishing invention, called the Firebird, allows users to jump into multiple universes—and promises to revolutionize science forever. But then Marguerite’s father is murdered, and the killer—her parent’s handsome, enigmatic assistant Paul— escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite refuses to let the man who destroyed her family go free. So she races after Paul through different universes, always leaping into another version of herself. But she also meets alternate versions of the people she knows—including Paul, whose life entangles with hers in increasingly familiar ways. Before long she begins to question Paul’s guilt—as well as her own heart. And soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is far more sinister than she expected.

My thoughts: So, I actually had already started the audiobook of this, and it was interesting, but too detailed for me to listen to because I was zoning out. However I do think I want to try to read this still.

Verdict: Keep

9. Deeper by James A. Moore:

Golden Cove today appears to be a charming New England seacoast town. But there are dark stories from decades past—when the town had a different name. Captain Joe Bierden’s heard them all—tall tales to entertain the tourists, he thinks. He doesn’t hesitate to hire his boat out to a research team eager to begin a month-long diving expedition.

So no one is more surprised than Captain Joe with the—thing—that the team finds in an offshore underwater cave. Their first mistake is in bringing it ashore. Their second is believing it can’t survive on land.

Their third is thinking that it’s the only one of its kind…

My thoughts: This used to be the type of story that I would devour, but I just don’t get into them as much anymore. Creepy cover though!

Verdict: Toss

10 -13. Books by Ann Halam:

When Sloe was tiny, her Papa disappeared and she and her mama went to live in a prison camp in the snowy north, in a time and place when there are no more wild animals. Mama’s crime: teaching science, and her dedication to the hope that the lost animal species can be reborn. To Sloe, Mama’s secret work is magic, as enchanting as Mama’s tales of a bright city across the ice where they will be free.

Years later, Sloe is sent to a prison school, and Mama disappears. At 13, Sloe escapes, pursued by a mysterious man. With only hope to keep her going, Sloe sets out on a solitary 1000-mile journey. But she is not truly alone for Mama left Sloe a gift: the seeds of five missing species and the knowledge to bring them to life.

My thoughts: Could be good, but not grabbing me.

Verdict: Toss

A gripping, deeply moving adventure raises startling questions about what it means to be human.

Taylor Walker seems like any ordinary 14-year-old. Ordinary—if you overlook the fact that she lives on the island of Borneo, on a primate reserve run by her parents, and knows how to survive in the jungle. Obviously, Tay isn’t just like everyone else. But she is like one other person. She’s exactly like one other person. Tay is a clone, one of only five in the world, and her clone mother is Pam Taylor, a brilliant scientist.

When rebels attack the reserve, Tay escapes with her younger brother and Uncle, an exceptionally intelligent orangutan. As they flee through the jungle, Tay must look within to find her strength: Pam’s DNA, tempered by Taylor’s extraordinary life. And she looks to Uncle for guidance—for Tay knows that the uncanny bond between Uncle and herself is the key to their survival.

My thoughts: I’m guessing I added all of this author for some reason, although they all sound like they have a theme, they don’t necessarily sound like me now.

Verdict: Toss

Martin’s tragic death at the age of only 15 has a profound effect on his family and friends. His best friend Diesel is desperate to make sure that Martin’s final resting place is somewhere he will feel safe forever. But the past refuses to stay in the past, and before long something terrifying begins to happen…

Ann Hallam’s spine-chilling tale is truly terrifying, and will have any young horror fan shaking with anticipation at every twist and turn. Hallam turns up the terror and gives great gore in a tale that will leave readers trembling. —Susan Harrison

My thoughts: Again, not sure it sounds that new or like something I still am interested in.

Verdict: Toss

Every night Joe looks for the shadow on the attic stairs. Sometimes he thinks he can see it. Sometimes he’s sure it’s in his mind. But nothing can prepare Joe for the terrible night when he finds out what the shadow really is.

My thoughts: I saw something on Goodreads that this is dyslexia friendly, so I probably added it to help me remember that. It looks too young for me or my students.

Verdict: Toss

14. The Well’s End by Seth Fishman:

A deadly virus and an impossible discovery unite in one enthralling can’t-miss read…

Sixteen-year-old Mia Kish has always been afraid of the dark. After all, she’s baby Mia, the one who fell down a well. That was years ago, though the darkness still haunts her. But when her classmates and teachers at ritzy Westbrook Academy start dying of old age from a bizarre and frightening virus that ages its victims years in a matter of hours, Mia becomes haunted by a lot more than the dark. Their deaths are gruesome and Mia worries she and her friends may be next. In order to survive, Mia and her small crew must break quarantine and outrun armed soldiers in hazmat suits who shoot first and ask questions later.

And there’s only one place to go—the Cave, aka Fenton Electronics. Mia knows it’s somehow connected and hopes her dad, Director of Fenton Electronics, who has always been strangely secretive about his work, has the answers she needs, and more importantly a cure to save everyone before the whole town succumbs to the mysterious virus. Unfortunately, it’s not answers Mia discovers, but something far more treacherous and impossible than even the virus itself.

A high-stakes, fast-paced adventure with imagination and heart.

My thoughts: I’ve got this one in my school library now, so maybe I’ll get to it. But don’t need to keep it on my TBR on Goodreads, I don’t think.

Verdict: Toss

15. Fat Boy vs. the Cheerleaders by Geoff Herbach:

It’s geeks versus jocks in an epic battle of the beverages!

From “one of the most real, honest, and still funny male voices to come around in a while” (YALSA) comes a brand-new cast of quirky characters, pitting fat boy Gabe against the high school cheerleading team in a battle over control of the school’s soda machine.

The war is ON! Never have the stakes been so high. Never have the trenches been so deep. Never has one soda vending machine been so vital. When the high school cheerleading team takes over the machine’s funds previously collected by the pep band, Gabe will not stand for it. Something must be done.

My thoughts: Sounds like a fun read, but nothing I’m dying to read.

Verdict: Toss

16. The Bees by Laline Paull:

The Handmaid’s Tale meets The Hunger Games in this brilliantly imagined debut.

Born into the lowest class of her society, Flora 717 is a sanitation bee, only fit to clean her orchard hive. Living to accept, obey and serve, she is prepared to sacrifice everything for her beloved holy mother, the Queen. Yet Flora has talents that are not typical of her kin. And while mutant bees are usually instantly destroyed, Flora is reassigned to feed the newborns, before becoming a forager, collecting pollen on the wing. Then she finds her way into the Queen’s inner sanctum, where she discovers secrets both sublime and ominous. Enemies roam everywhere, from the fearsome fertility police to the high priestesses who jealously guard the Hive Mind. But Flora cannot help but break the most sacred law of all, and her instinct to serve is overshadowed by a desire, as overwhelming as it is forbidden…

Laline Paull’s chilling yet ultimately triumphant novel creates a luminous world both alien and uncannily familiar. Thrilling and imaginative, The Bees is the story of a heroine who changes her destiny and her world.

My thoughts: I know why I added it, it sounds fascinating and so unique. But we do have a copy of it in the library here.

Verdict: Toss

17. Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis:

Princess Snow is missing.

Her home planet is filled with violence and corruption at the hands of King Matthias and his wife as they attempt to punish her captors. The king will stop at nothing to get his beloved daughter back—but that’s assuming she wants to return at all.

Essie has grown used to being cold. Temperatures on the planet Thanda are always sub-zero, and she fills her days with coding and repairs for the seven loyal drones that run the local mines.

When a mysterious young man named Dane crash-lands near her home, Essie agrees to help the pilot repair his ship. But soon she realizes that Dane’s arrival was far from accidental, and she’s pulled into the heart of a war she’s risked everything to avoid. With the galaxy’s future—and her own—in jeopardy, Essie must choose who to trust in a fiery fight for survival.

My thoughts: Sadly, this makes me think of the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer, which sadly I did not really care for, so probably won’t read this one either.

Verdict: Toss

18. How to Get a (Love) Life by Rosie Blake:

Some people book last-minute holidays, walk barefoot in the grass or party on a week night. Not Nicola Brown. Nicola is the kind of girl who double-locks the front door, leaves the plastic covering on new furniture, sticks to a super-strict diet and definitely, absolutely Does Not Date.

Her colleague Caroline – loopy, warm and exasperated by her, knows that Nicola’s reluctance to lose control means she’s living only half a life. And so she lays down the gauntlet: Nicola must cast aside her hang ups and go on as many dates as it takes to find true love in time for Valentine’s Day.

The pick of local men is, quite frankly, a bit rubbish. And there are only three months until February 14th. Surely it’s an impossible task? But, as Nicola is about to find out on her dodgy dates, letting go isn’t quite as scary as she imagined. In fact, it’s rather a lot of fun…

My thoughts: As much fun as it sounds, I’m sure there are a lot of romance books I have on my actual shelves and by authors I really know that I’d read before this one.

Verdict: Toss

19. The Line that Binds by J.M. Miller:

Stained with heartache and cursed with vengeance, a stone well lies on a nineteenth-century estate, waiting for the Stockton line to wish again. When seventeen-year-old Lila Wayde’s father loses his high-paying job in Las Vegas, the family relocates to a Pennsylvania estate bequeathed by an estranged aunt. Lila begins a new life there, one not corrupted by wealth and fake friends. She soon meets Ben, the groundskeeper’s gritty grandson, and experiences the kind of happiness her life’s been missing. But as she settles into the ancient house, she learns information about her ancestors and the old stone well that may make her wish she’d never come. Ben Shadows has lost enough in life. So when Stockton Estate’s owner, Janine, wills the land to her great-niece Lila, Ben fears for the fate of the property. He decides to find out Lila’s intentions as the new owner, but his grandfather wants him to protect her from Stockton Estate’s alleged curse. As Ben helps Lila dig through the estate’s history, they grow closer than he ever intended. Now, along with concerns about the property and the reality of the curse, he struggles with feelings he can’t ignore. Will the secrets of Stockton Estate bring them together or will knowing the truth rip them apart? **Recommended mature YA for mild language and mild sexual content**

My thoughts: Not that unique sounding

Verdict: Toss

20. The Violet Hour by Whitney A. Miller:

The voice inside me is breaking free. I can’t stop it.

Some call VisionCrest the pinnacle of religious enlightenment. Others call it a powerful cult. For seventeen years, Harlow Wintergreen has called it her life.

As the daughter of VisionCrest’s patriarch, Harlow is expected to be perfect at all times. She must be considered a paragon of integrity by the other Ministry teens and a future leader in the eyes of the world.

Despite the constant scrutiny Harlow is keeping a dark and dangerous secret, even from her best friend and the boy she loves. She hears a voice in her head that seems to have a mind of its own, plaguing her with violent and bloody visions. It commands her to kill. And the urge to obey is getting harder and harder to control ….

My thoughts: So, I do enjoy cult books. But I want them to be more of the realistic type, and this sounds like it might have a supernatural aspect.

Verdict: Toss

Final Thoughts:

So I’m only keeping 2 this week! Yay me! Last week I had 3,072 books left on my Goodreads TBR. I’m tossing 18 this week, leaving me at 3,058 on Goodreads. It looks like I did a good job of tossing and not so much adding this past week.

Have you read any of these? Would you suggest I keep any I’m tossing? And if you’re inspired to do this on your blog, please feel free to join in and share a link in the comments, since it will also get you an extra entry into my giveaway at the bottom of this post.

Giveaway:

Once again this is a US only giveaway, unless you are International and see a book here you really want and would be willing to pay for the difference in the shipping through Paypal or some other way. You get to pick any two books from the pictures below, as long as they don’t get traded away, or picked by last week’s winner, and I will pick a surprise book from the piles to add to your choice. You can pick only one from the 2019 pile, and one from the 2020 pile, the other should be from one of the others. Here are your choices:

2020 ARCs:

2019 ARCs:

2012-2016 ARCs:

Finished copies: I also found some finished copies of books that I either have already read or won’t get to, so thought I’d throw them in for the giveaway as well!

Once again I’m going to let you pick two, along with me throwing in a surprise third book!  Just enter the Rafflecopter below.  

Disclaimer:  Unfortunately, while I’ve only had it happen once, I’m going to have to make a statement like other giveaways I’ve seen on blogs that I am not responsible for lost mail.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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12 responses to “Cleaning Up My TBR With a Giveaway (US Only) – Down the TBR Hole #59

  1. Lily M.

    Hi!!! I actually haven’t read any of the books on your list. You always have books that I haven’t seen before, makes me curious about them and want to check them out :):)

    • Lisa Mandina

      Well, I don’t seem to have got to them, so they may not be anything worth checking out. :-). Thanks for stopping by!

    • Lisa Mandina

      I still need to read it! It was given to me through a book exchange, but I just haven’t had the chance to read it, so thought I should share. Normally I’d add it to my own school library, but it was discarded from another library, so it has marks on it that means I can’t put it in my library. Thanks for visiting!

  2. Danielle Hammelef

    Most of the books you tossed, with the exception of Claudia Gray’s book, I haven’t ever heard of, so excellent job tossing this week.

    • Lisa Mandina

      Yeah, I figure that probably means I’ll be okay tossing them if no one else jumps forward to say to keep them. Thanks for stopping by!

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