To-be-read lists, more affectionately called TBRs, interest readers everywhere. TBRs generate high viewerships on booktube channels, next to book hauls and monthly wrap ups. While reading is a largely isolated activity, readers crave connection with fellow readers. Just look at the number of Goodread users, and the ever growing number of booktube channels and book bloggers. Perhaps it is the sheer number of hours that readers spend alone reading that makes them all the more keen to know that their experience is shared with others. Noticing that a fellow reader is about to read something I’ve previously read excites me. I am kept curious about what they might feel about it at the end of the novel. Would they like it as much as I do? Even more exciting would be when I find out someone else has the same book on their TBR as me. You know that in another place, someone else is reading the very same words and turning over the same pages as you are. Are they imagining the scenes the way I am? I have this habit of observing my friends’ expressions as I tell them to read a passage that I enjoy. I will gauge where they are on the page and will read the same line myself, and then sneak peaks now and then to see if they might crack up at the same lines that tickled me.
My whims dictate the next book I pick up, and my whims go through phases. I am currently in a science fiction/wildlife phase of my reading, so anything that roars or prowls about in the wilderness would catch my attention. Before this, I went through a gothic phase of my literary journey. The Monk by Matthew Lewis kept me up all night following the naughty adventures of monk Ambrosio as he falters in the face of Satan’s temptation. Keeping a TBR will help me identify reading themes.
My TBR for May:
- Whatever happened to baby Jane – Henry Farrell
- Melmoth the wanderer – Charles Maturin
- Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi
I will be writing reviews for these novels as I finish them. Stay tuned.