Springtime means three things to me – nice weather, allergy season, and summer reading guides. May is typically the month when these lists of new releases and paperbacks are splashed across every analog and digital platform known to man. The New York Times and Washington Post will have their lists ready to roll out any day now. Some magazines are already recommending their “best beach reads.” And for someone like me who loves buying books and recently quit cold turkey, these lists can be pure torture.
Reporters and insiders take books that they loved and add them to their summer reading lists. Not to mention all the bibliophiles out there who have platforms of their own – which I subscribe to that share their own suggestions. And why – you might ask – should I believe these total strangers? Well, they haven’t steered me wrong yet, and I have the books to prove it.
Last year, Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid was everybody’s summer darling – and rightfully so. I know because I bought it, of course. 🙂 And if you haven’t read it yet, it recently came out in paperback.
Another favorite of mine from last year was The Midnight Library by Matthew Haig. I stumbled upon this book after listening to an interview with the author. Now, I recommend it to everyone.
But here is the real reason (or reasons) the 2021 summer book lists cannot suck me in. I want to get through last year’s recommendations first. I have 11 books from 2020 and 7 books from 2019 that I haven’t read yet. And I’m still reading books I purchased in 2018!
Pictured above is a small fraction of my TBR pile. A few weeks ago, I picked the books that I REALLY wanted to read, and I’m still making my way through the pile. I’ve already read three out of the five titles and just started the bottom book a few days ago. As I tackle the larger shelf of unread books, I find that building these smaller piles- and keeping them in plain sight so I don’t get distracted – makes the task much more manageable.
I will say that my reading stats are improving. I have read 20 books in 2020 and six books so far this year. As these 2021 titles come out and scream, “BUY ME! BUY ME!” – I will put those new and shiny books on my list for later. Much later.
What are some of your favorite reads from the past few years? I promise I won’t go out and buy them – but I am wondering if I already have them. Maybe if you say they are good – I’ll bump them up on my reading list. And if you are a big reader like me, please follow me on Goodreads – where I am tracking and sometimes reviewing books.