Every year Roof Beam Reader hosts an Official TBR Pile Challenge. The aim of this challenge is to get through some of the books that have been sitting on our TBR piles for at least a year. That means that this year, any book published in 2013 or before is eligible. This is the only limitation – you can read books from any genre, published as long before 2013 as you want!
I participated in this challenge last year, and I didn’t do all that well. The biggest problem for me, of course, is that I’m a mood reader. It’s very hard to decide ahead of time (and stick to a list) which books I’m going to read in an upcoming year. I read over 40 books that would have qualified – but they weren’t ones I had on my list, and you’re not allowed to change it (other than subbing in the two alternates stated) once you’ve set your goals.
But it’s good to have something to work towards, so regardless of my lack of success last time around, I’m giving it another go this year. Below is a list of books I’ve been meaning to read for quite some time now (most longer than a year) and that I’m pretty sure I will at least consider reading in the upcoming year!
- The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern
- Love Is the Higher Law – David Levithan
- The Absolutely True Diary of A Part-Time Indian – Sherman Alexie
- Shadow and Bone – Leigh Bardugo
- Bel Canto – Ann Patchett
- The Casual Vacancy – J.K. Rowling
- Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore – Robin Sloan
- Just Kids – Patti Smith – Review here
- Last Night In Montreal – Emily St. John Mandel
- The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry – Rachel Joyce
- A Visit from the Goon Squad – Jennifer Egan – Review here
- Why New Orleans Matters – Tom Piazza – Not reviewed separately, see bottom of post for my thoughts
- Stories I Only Tell My Friends – Rob Lowe
- The Ocean At the End of the Lane – Neil Gaiman
Wish me luck – and if you’re reading this and thinking, “Dude, I should really look through my TBR piles and see which books I can knock of the list this year,” then head on over and sign up! Share your link in the comments if you’re participating as well so that I can stop by and check out the books you selected!
Books Not Reviewed Separately:
Why New Orleans Matters – Tom Piazza
Mini-Review: I read this before I went to visit New Orleans for the first time. Piazza traveled to New Orleans many times before finally moving there, and he has a deep love of and admiration of his adopted home. This book is part showcase of the cultural elements that make New Orleans such a unique and amazing place, and part a chilling account of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, one of the biggest natural disasters to occur in the USA in my lifetime, and one that started a chain reaction of mistakes and loss that affected thousands. It was eye-opening and I was really glad to have read it before my first visit to the area, because it helped me appreciate the wonderful New Orleans traditions but also to understand a little bit better how Katrina impacted the community.