Goodreads TBR Declutter #14

Here’s another go at my Goodreads TBR list! The original idea is from Lia @ Lost in a Story. Here’s how it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order by ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if youre 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?

1: The Sheep Look Up by John Brunner

An enduring classic, this book offers a dramatic and prophetic look at the potential consequences of the escalating destruction of Earth. In this nightmare society, air pollution is so bad that gas masks are commonplace. Infant mortality is up, and everyone seems to suffer from some form of ailment.

This sounds depressing and too close to reality. I might revisit this someday, but I’m removing it from my TBR at least for now.

Verdict: REMOVE

2: The Android’s Dream by John Scalzi

A human diplomat kills his alien counterpart. Earth is on the verge of war with a vastly superior alien race. A lone man races against time and a host of enemies to find the one object that can save our planet and our people from alien enslavement…

A sheep.

Throw in two-timing freelance mercenaries, political lobbyists with megalomaniac tendencies, aliens on a religious quest, and an artificial intelligence with unusual backstory, and you’ve got more than just your usual science fiction adventure story. You’ve got The Android’s Dream.

First, the synopsis was too long. This is only about half of it. However, it does sound amusing, and there is a sheep in it. I might get to this one eventually.

Verdict: KEEP

3: A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami

His life was like a recurring nightmare: a train to nowhere. But an ordinary life has a way of taking an extraordinary turn. Add a girl whose ears are so exquisite that, when uncovered, they improve sex a thousand-fold, a runaway friend, a right-wing politico, an ovine-obsessed professor and a manic-depressive in a sheep outfit, implicate them in a hunt for a sheep, that may or may not be running the world, and the upshot is another singular masterpiece from Japan’s finest novelist.

I will admit that I added this one to my TBR because it is about sheep. (Yes, you sense a theme in these first few books.) However, the synopsis sounds really interesting, so I do want to read it.

Verdict: KEEP

4: Written In Red by Anne Bishop

As a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, Meg Corbyn can see the future when her skin is cut—a gift that feels more like a curse. Meg’s Controller keeps her enslaved so he can have full access to her visions. But when she escapes, the only safe place Meg can hide is at the Lakeside Courtyard—a business district operated by the Others.

Shape-shifter Simon Wolfgard is reluctant to hire the stranger who inquires about the Human Liaison job. First, he senses she’s keeping a secret, and second, she doesn’t smell like human prey. Yet a stronger instinct propels him to give Meg the job. And when he learns the truth about Meg and that she’s wanted by the government, he’ll have to decide if she’s worth the fight between humans and the Others that will surely follow.

This one has been interesting me for some time now. I need to just hurry up and read it to see if it’s a series I want to continue.

Verdict: KEEP

5: Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square-shaped hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.

Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved – the object’s origins, architects, and purpose unknown.

But some can never stop searching for answers.

This is another one that still sounds fascinating, and I want to read. (So many books, so little time.)

Verdict: KEEP

6: Gretel and the Case of the Missing Frog Prints by P.J. Brackston

Bavaria, 1776. When Albrecht Durer the Much Much Younger’s Frog Prints go missing, he knows exactly where to turn for help. Gretel (yes, that Gretel), now 35 and still living with her gluttonous brother Hans, is the country’s most famous private investigator, and she leaps at the opportunity to travel to cosmopolitan Nuremberg to take on the case. But amid the hubbub of the city s annual sausage festival, Gretel struggles to find any clues that point toward the elusive thief.

I thought this one sounded amusing when I first read the synopsis, but now it sounds a bit too much. I’m just not interested now.

Verdict: REMOVE

7: Once Upon a Crime by P.J. Brackston

. . . Very soon Gretel finds herself accused of kidnapping Princess Charlotte, twice locked up in the cells at the Summer Schloss, repelling the advances of an amorous troll, strapped to a rack in Herr Schmerz’s torture chamber, and fleeing a murder charge. With dubious help from her brother (whose scant wits are habitually addled by drink), she must prove her innocence, solve the puzzle of the unidentified corpse, and find the stolen cats before they meet a grisly end.

This is the second book in the Brothers Grimm Mystery series (The Missing Frog Prints was book #1) and I’m just not interested anymore. Plus, this is only the last 1/4 of the synopsis. I have an unreasonable hatred of long synopses, but to me it shows an author’s potential editing ability (or lack thereof). If you’re too long-winded in a synopsis, I don’t trust you to write a tight novel.

Verdict: REMOVE

8: Nice Dragons Finish Last by Rachel Aaron

As the smallest dragon in the Heartstriker clan, Julius survives by a simple code: keep quiet, don’t cause trouble, and stay out of the way of bigger dragons. But this meek behavior doesn’t fly in a family of ambitious magical predators, and his mother, Bethesda the Heartstriker, has finally reached the end of her patience.

Now, sealed in human form and banished to the DFZ–a vertical metropolis built on the ruins of Old Detroit–Julius has one month to prove that he can be a ruthless dragon or kiss his true shape goodbye forever. But in a city of modern mages and vengeful spirits where dragons are considered monsters to be exterminated, he’s going to need some serious help to survive this test.

Still sounds good, plus dragons. This one stays.

Verdict: KEEP

9: Delirium by Lauren Oliver

In an alternate United States, love has been declared a dangerous disease, and the government forces everyone who reaches eighteen to have a procedure called the Cure. Living with her aunt, uncle, and cousins in Portland, Maine, Lena Haloway is very much looking forward to being cured and living a safe, predictable life. She watched love destroy her mother and isn’t about to make the same mistake.

But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena meets enigmatic Alex, a boy from the “Wilds” who lives under the government’s radar. What will happen if they do the unthinkable and fall in love?

This sounds amusing, but I’ve been off of YA books for a while, so I haven’t read it yet. However, it does sound like one I might like when I return to YA books, so I’ll wait until I’m not mad at the genre to make a final decision on this one.

Verdict: KEEP (probably)

10: A Study in Silks by Emma Jane Holloway

London, April 4, 1888 ~ Evelina Cooper, niece of Sherlock Holmes, is ready for her first London Season – except for a murderer, missing automatons, a sorcerer, and a talking mouse. In a Victorian era ruled by a ruthless steam baron council, mechanical power is the real monarch, and sorcery the demon enemy of the empire. Evelina has secretly mastered a coveted weapon – magic that can run machines. Should she trust the handsome, clever rake who speeds her breath, or the dashing trick rider who would dare anything she would ask?

I’m a sucker for fun Sherlock Holmes retellings or adaptations. This sounds amusing, so I’m hoping I get to it soon.

Verdict: KEEP


Only three removed this time, but they were three that I think really needed to go. And besides, every little bit of TBR clean-up helps! I’m not trying to get rid of books for the sake of dumping them, so even reminding myself of the ones I still want to read is helpful.

What about your TBR? Are any of these books on your shelves, either as to-read or have-read books? Are there any I removed which you think I should reconsider?

10 thoughts on “Goodreads TBR Declutter #14

    1. Thanks! It can be hard; I mean, I added them to my TBR for a reason in the first place. I’m really excited to start Nice Dragons Finish Last soon… I hope! 😀

  1. I liked Deliriums when it first came out, but the rest of the series was not good. The second book was choppy and felt so out of place, and I never bothered with book three but a friend read it and said it wasn’t any better.
    So if you DO read Delirium, just read that and not the others.

    1. Sheep! (Yes, I can be shallow like that. However, the sheep theme led me to read Connie Willis’ Bellwether, which I loved, so that’s a bonus!)

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