Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books That Have Been On My TBR for a Long Time (That I Still Want to Read)
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. They created the meme because they love lists. Who doesn’t love lists? They wanted to share these list with fellow book lovers and ask that we share in return to connect with our fellow book lovers. To learn more about participating in the challenge, stop by their page dedicated to it and dive in!
This week’s topic: Top Ten Books That Have Been On My TBR for a Long Time (That I Still Want to Read)
From what I’m seeing on my journeys across the blogosphere, lots of of bloggers this year are resolving to chisel down their TBRs by making a stronger effort to read “personal” books (as opposed to review books) or to tackle their backlist. Recently I’ve decided to try and do the same, with my first step being to clean up my Goodreads to-read shelf, removing books that have been there for so long that chances are unlikely I’ll ever get to them, while prioritizing the ones I do want to keep and pushing them to the top. This also involved scrubbing all abandoned series along with books I’m no longer interested in, and after the great culling, here’s what I’ve got:
Empire in Black and Gold by Adrian Tchaikovsky
Seventeen years ago Stenwold witnessed the Wasp Empire storming the city of Myna in a brutal war of conquest. Since then he has preached vainly against this threat in his home city of Collegium, but now the Empire is on the march, with its spies and its armies everywhere, and the Lowlands lie directly in its path. All the while, Stenwold has been training youthful agents to fight the Wasp advance, and the latest recruits include his niece, Che, and his mysterious ward, Tynisa. When his home is violently attacked, he is forced to send them ahead of him and, hotly pursued, they fly by airship to Helleron, the first city in line for the latest Wasp invasion.
Stenwold and Che are Beetle-kinden, one of many human races that take their powers and inspiration each from a totem insect, but he also has allies of many breeds: Mantis, Spider, Ant, with their own particular skills. Foremost is the deadly Mantis-kinden warrior, Tisamon, but other very unlikely allies also join the cause. As things go from bad to worse amid escalating dangers, Stenwold learns that the Wasps intend to use the newly completed railroad between Helleron and Collegium to launch a lightning strike into the heart of the Lowlands. Then he gathers all of his agents to force a final showdown in the engine yard…
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
A funny, often poignant tale of boy meets girl with a twist: what if one of them couldn’t stop slipping in and out of time? Highly original and imaginative, this debut novel raises questions about life, love, and the effects of time on relationships.
Audrey Niffenegger’s innovative debut, The Time Traveler’s Wife, is the story of Clare, a beautiful art student, and Henry, an adventuresome librarian, who have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was thirty-six, and were married when Clare was twenty-three and Henry thirty-one. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity in his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing.
The Time Traveler’s Wife depicts the effects of time travel on Henry and Clare’s marriage and their passionate love for each other as the story unfolds from both points of view. Clare and Henry attempt to live normal lives, pursuing familiar goals—steady jobs, good friends, children of their own. All of this is threatened by something they can neither prevent nor control, making their story intensely moving and entirely unforgettable.
The Princess Bride by William Goldman
What happens when the most beautiful girl in the world marries the handsomest prince of all time and he turns out to be…well…a lot less than the man of her dreams?
As a boy, William Goldman claims, he loved to hear his father read the S. Morgenstern classic, The Princess Bride. But as a grown-up he discovered that the boring parts were left out of good old Dad’s recitation, and only the “good parts” reached his ears.
Now Goldman does Dad one better. He’s reconstructed the “Good Parts Version” to delight wise kids and wide-eyed grownups everywhere.
What’s it about? Fencing. Fighting. True Love. Strong Hate. Harsh Revenge. A Few Giants. Lots of Bad Men. Lots of Good Men. Five or Six Beautiful Women. Beasties Monstrous and Gentle. Some Swell Escapes and Captures. Death, Lies, Truth, Miracles, and a Little Sex.
In short, it’s about everything.
Reamde by Neal Stephenson
Four decades ago, Richard Forthrast, the black sheep of an Iowa family, fled to a wild and lonely mountainous corner of British Columbia to avoid the draft. Smuggling backpack loads of high-grade marijuana across the border into Northern Idaho, he quickly amassed an enormous and illegal fortune. With plenty of time and money to burn, he became addicted to an online fantasy game in which opposing factions battle for power and treasure in a vast cyber realm. Like many serious gamers, he began routinely purchasing virtual gold pieces and other desirables from Chinese gold farmers—young professional players in Asia who accumulated virtual weapons and armor to sell to busy American and European buyers.
For Richard, the game was the perfect opportunity to launder his aging hundred dollar bills and begin his own high-tech start up—a venture that has morphed into a Fortune 500 computer gaming group, Corporation 9592, with its own super successful online role-playing game, T’Rain. But the line between fantasy and reality becomes dangerously blurred when a young gold farmer accidently triggers a virtual war for dominance—and Richard is caught at the center.
Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
In this stunning re-imagining of J. M. Barrie’s beloved classic Peter Pan, New York Times bestselling author Jodi Lynn Anderson expertly weaves a gripping tale of love, loss, and adventure.
Before Peter Pan belonged to Wendy, he belonged to the girl with the crow feather in her hair… Tiger Lily. When fifteen-year-old Tiger Lily meets the alluring teenage Peter Pan deep in the forbidden woods of Neverland, the two form a bond that’s impossible to break, but also impossible to hold on to. As the leader of the Lost Boys, the most fearsome of Neverland’s inhabitants, Peter is an unthinkable match for Tiger Lily. However, when Wendy Darling, a girl who is everything Tiger Lily is not, arrives on the island, Tiger Lily discovers how far she is willing to go to keep Peter with her, and in Neverland.
Told from the perspective of tiny, fairy-sized Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily is the breathtaking story of budding romance, letting go and the pains of growing up.
The City of Dreaming Books by Walter Moers
In this new Zamonian adventure, Optimus Yarnspinner, a young writer, inherits from his beloved godfather an unpublished short story by an unknown author. His search for the author’s identity takes him to Bookholm the so-called City of Dreaming Books. On entering its streets, our hero feels as if he has opened the door of a gigantic second-hand bookshop. His nostrils areassailed by clouds of book dust, the stimulating scent of ancient leather, and the tang of printer’s ink.
Soon, though, Yarnspinner falls into the clutches of the city’s evil genius, Pfistomel Smyke, who treacherously maroons him in the labyrinthine catacombs underneath the city, where reading books can be genuinely dangerous.
In The City of Dreaming Books, Walter Moers transports us to a magical world where reading is a remarkable adventure. Only those intrepid souls who are prepared to join Yarnspinner on his perilous journey should read this book. We wish the rest of you a long, safe, unutterably dull and boring life!
Perdido Street Station by China Miéville
Beneath the towering bleached ribs of a dead, ancient beast lies New Crobuzon, a squalid city where humans, Re-mades, and arcane races live in perpetual fear of Parliament and its brutal militia. The air and rivers are thick with factory pollutants and the strange effluents of alchemy, and the ghettos contain a vast mix of workers, artists, spies, junkies, and whores. In New Crobuzon, the unsavory deal is stranger to none—not even to Isaac, a brilliant scientist with a penchant for Crisis Theory.
Isaac has spent a lifetime quietly carrying out his unique research. But when a half-bird, half-human creature known as the Garuda comes to him from afar, Isaac is faced with challenges he has never before fathomed. Though the Garuda’s request is scientifically daunting, Isaac is sparked by his own curiosity and an uncanny reverence for this curious stranger.
While Isaac’s experiments for the Garuda turn into an obsession, one of his lab specimens demands attention: a brilliantly colored caterpillar that feeds on nothing but a hallucinatory drug and grows larger—and more consuming—by the day. What finally emerges from the silken cocoon will permeate every fiber of New Crobuzon—and not even the Ambassador of Hell will challenge the malignant terror it invokes…
The Red Knight by Miles Cameron
Twenty eight florins a month is a huge price to pay, for a man to stand between you and the Wild.
Twenty eight florins a month is nowhere near enough when a wyvern’s jaws snap shut on your helmet in the hot stink of battle, and the beast starts to rip the head from your shoulders. But if standing and fighting is hard, leading a company of men – or worse, a company of mercenaries – against the smart, deadly creatures of the Wild is even harder.
It takes all the advantages of birth, training, and the luck of the devil to do it.
The Red Knight has all three, he has youth on his side, and he’s determined to turn a profit. So when he hires his company out to protect an Abbess and her nunnery, it’s just another job. The abby is rich, the nuns are pretty and the monster preying on them is nothing he can’t deal with.
Only it’s not just a job. It’s going to be a war…
Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb
Wizardwood, a sentient wood. The most precious commodity in the world. Like many other legendary wares, it comes only from the Rain River Wilds.
But how can one trade with the Rain Wilders, when only a liveship fashioned from wizardwood can negotiate the perilous waters of the Rain River? Rare and valuable a liveship will quicken only when three members, from successive generations, have died on board. The liveship Vivacia is about to undergo her quickening as Althea Vestrit’s father is carried on deck in his death-throes. Althea waits for the ship that she loves more than anything else in the world to awaken. Only to discover that the Vivacia has been signed away in her father’s will to her brutal brother-in-law, Kyle Haven…
Others plot to win or steal a liveship. The Paragon, known by many as the Pariah, went mad, turned turtle, and drowned his crew. Now he lies blind, lonely, and broken on a deserted beach. But greedy men have designs to restore him, to sail the waters of the Rain Wild River once more.
Legend by David Gemmell
His name is Druss.
The stories of his life are told everywhere. But the grizzled veteran has spurned a life of fame and fortune and retreated to the solitude of his mountain lair.
His home is Dros Delnoch.
And it is the only route through the mountains for the army laying waste the country around them. Once the stronghold of the Drenai, the fortress of Dros Delnoch will now be their last battleground. And Druss will be its last hope.
His story is LEGEND.
Oooh I didn’t know the Walter Moers books were translated!!
A lot of my German friends love them, but I was never that interested.
Yep! I have a Swiss friend who REALLY wants me to read him. She was the one who linked me the English edition goodreads page for City of Dreaming Books, years ago 🙂
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I dnfed Cameron. And damn! The TT’s wife made me cry so hard
People either seem to love or hate that Cameron book. Those who love it seem excited with each sequel though, which is why I’ve kept it on my list all this time because I can’t help but be curious 😀
I really should read The PRincess Bride!!!
I had a hard time with the Liveship Traders books (and never finished) but I loved her Fitz books.
I still haven’t finished Hobb’s Farseer trilogy, I have the last book left to go. I did read her Rain Wilds Chronicles though (the one about the dragons) and enjoyed a lot, and liveships played a big part in it which is why I became curious in Ship of Magic 😀
I liked the Time Travelers Wife when I read it years back. It was out of my comfort zone but I liked it and found it moving and sad. I quite liked the film too. My tastes have changed now so I don’t know how I’d feel about it now!
Yes, I heard a lot about the TT’s wife and how so many were moved by it. It went on my list right away, but now I just need to find time to read it 😀
Ooh nice! It took me a few years to get around to reading Princess Bride after watching the movie a 1000 times growing up! Think I read it in middle school by that point because I was deemed old enough to read it! Tiger Lily is a must though!! I read that one as an ARC many years ago and I positively adored it! It’s sad, it’s sweet, it’s just all sorts of perfect though!!
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Yeah, Princess Bride is one of those classics that I feel like I need to read! And I’ve heard such great things about Tiger Lily, I think that’s why it’s stayed on my tbr for so long!
I have a copy of The Red Knight sitting on my shelf back at home too 🙂 And I do need to read The Princess Bride too. One of my best friends, who I not a reader at all, decided to randomly read it one day, and was obsessed with it and would tell me every week that I needed to read it. Obviously I still haven’t XD But it a non-reader likes a book, I think that says something.
My copy of The Red Knight also stares at me from my shelf occasionally, making me feel guilty for not having read it yet, haha! And same, I’ve had friends who tell me I just HAVE to read The Princess Bride. One day, I swear!
I really liked The City of Dreaming Books! The whole setting just really… gah, I loved it.
Yes, it sounds so magical! I need to read it!
I’ve seen The City of Dreaming Books at my library in the past and was always curious. I’d love to see your read it and hear your thoughts. Good luck getting to these. I’ve not read any but I know people ADORE Robin Hobb.
It’s made me curious too, especially since it is translated from its original German, and it’s also been translated into sooooo many languages. I figured such a beloved book the world over, you just can’t go wrong!
I’ve actually read several of these. Perdido Street Station and the sequel are two of my all time favorites, and I really loved The Time Traveler’s Wife. And you can’t beat The Princess Bride! So good!
I really need to try China Mieville again. The first time I read him didn’t really work out, but I think I just started with the wrong book. So PSS is still on my list as a possibly better one to try 🙂
I confess that I only herd about one and I haven’t read any.
Which one? 🙂
Every time I do one of these posts I am appalled by how little progress I’ve made in whittling down my TBR list. Yeah, I get rid of books, read a few, but I’m always adding more than I subtract. Gotta keep trying though, mainly because I’m running out of room in my house for all the books. 🙂
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Ah, the life of a book blogger! There’s never enough time and the TBR mountain just keeps growing. Just last night I told my husband we need more shelves! I too am running out of places to store all my books 😀
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Neal Stephenson is one of those authors I keep promising myself I will read one of these days, although I’ve often been in awe of the sheer complexity of themes and stories he writes. “Reamde” seems a good ‘entry level’ book, so I might start there – of course *after* I’ve pruned off some of the books I have on my own TBR pile… 😀
I’ve read a couple by Stephenson. Reamde has been on my list for a looong time though, I just don’t know what’s preventing me from picking it up. Well, I suppose the intimidating page count might have something to do with it, he tends to write huge tomes 😀
The Red Knight is also waiting for me to pick it up! I keep forgetting all about it until I see it in blog posts!
I absolutely adore the Shadows of the Apt series, along with Legend by Gemmell and The Liveship Traders! Actually some of my absolute favourites (I know that list keeps getting longer and longer). I honestly couldn’t recommend all three enough!!!!! 😀
Awesome! Glad to hear I have lots to look forward to 😀
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Tiger Lily is fab..I’m adding Shadows of Apt to my tbr, greaatttt ;p
Indeed, I’ve heard so much praise for Tiger Lily!
Lol The Time Traveler’s Wife is on a lot of TBRs I’ve seen today.
Oh my gosh! I HIGHLY recommend the Princess Bride (so funny at times) and Ship of Magic (sooo goood).
Haha, yeah the Time Traveler’s Wife seems to be one of those books that everyone wants to read! I just haven’t gotten around to it yet…STILL, lol. And The Princess Bride is also another one!
I really relate to this list- I’ve had Princess Bride and Ship of Magic on my tbr for ages and I still want to read them!
Glad to hear I’m not the only one! 😀
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Princess Bride is one of my favorite books!!!! I think it is brilliant how he wrote the whole book as if he were abridging a different book. Its amazing. The movie is great, but its just the tip of the iceberg. There is soooo much more the book brings to the table!
I’ve heard about the unconventional and frankly ingenious writing style of The Princess Bride! It’s why I badly want to read it, actually. The idea intrigues me!
You have to read The Princess Bride! I loved it so much.
Yep, it’s definitely on the priority list!
A few on here that I want to read to – Hobb and Gemmell for starters – and I’ve read The Princess Bride and The Time Traveller’s Wife. I enjoyed both of them.
I keep forgetting that The Princess Bride is a book! I love the movie, so one day it might be worth reading it to see how the two versions differ.
You know what, I actually don’t think I’ve seen The Princess Bride movie all the way through! I mean, I always catch it on TV, but I always come in near
the middle or end of it, and if I catch the beginning, I’ve always turned to something else.
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You really should! It’s a good blend of fantasy, romance, and comedy all the way through, and sometimes that’s all you really need: Something that doesn’t take itself too seriously, and so it makes you laugh an feel good.
OK, plenty of people have stood up for The Princess Bride (so, so, so awesome – book and movie alike), but Perdido Street Station is perhaps the other book on your list that is. just. amaze-balls. A stand out read. 🙂
Glad you spoke up about Perdido Street Station! I haven’t had much luck with Mieville, but I think I’m just reading the wrong books. I figure I can’t go wrong with PSS though, it seems quite popular and widely loved.
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