My Totally-Didn’t-Happen “TBR”

HELLO STRANGERS! Yes, strangers, because I’ve been gone so shamefully long I may as well be new here. Sigh. Aaaaanyway, I’ll be doing something new today: a totally-didn’t-happen TBR. Yeah, I made it up, so bear with me!

Backstory: I intended back in THE BEGINNING OF SEPTEMBER to do a Fall TBR. I was all excited, had all the books picked out, and…just never got the chance to write it. So then I thought ‘oh, I’ll just do that now!’ but, uh, no, because a) it’s DECEMBER and b) just as I’ve had no time to blog I’ve also had no time to read. Seriously. I’ve been on page 137 of Queen of Shadows since my vacation in AUGUST.


So instead, here is where I compile all those books that my optimistic reader self thought I’d read (until my academics-are-important self took a blow torch to that dream and watched it burn, baby, burn) with the thoughts that I like to imagine I would have reviewed for them and a hefty dose of self-deprecation. It’s a guessing game of hypotheses and sarcasm that I hope you will enjoy.

(PS. goodreads links are in the titles if you want to check anything out!)


Let the fall(ing into despair) begin with me finishing Queen of Shadows.


Obviously since I finished QoS (it was phenomenal, of course, and way better than Heir of Fire which left me underwhelmed (don’t hate me)) I immediately grab The Assassin’s Blade and read one story every night or so before bed because nothing says ‘student’ like over-exhaustion.


Next of course was Empire of Storms, which I definitely read early in the month so that I can get to Tower of Dawn (which I’m not even going to put on this list at risk of making myself even sadder) shortly after its release at the beginning of the-month-in-which-I-did-not-read.


“Review”: This book caused me physical pain while simultaneously making me enjoy it. How do I know this? Because everyone has already freaked out about it and it’s freaking SARAH J. MAAS. THIS IS INEVITABLE.

Nothing so masochistic as reading an SJM book, amirite?

Because I’m a ridiculously fast reader with absolutely no other responsibilities whatsoever, I finish all of those within the first two weeks, leaving me plenty of time to revisit my beloved Blue and her boys in The Dream Thieves.


Real talk, people: if Gansey actually dies at the end of the series, I. Will. RIOT.

Maggie Stiefvater, fear my wrath!

The King Slayer comes next because by now I’m into the thick of history major-ness which only leaves me wanting more, so I turn to this gem of an Early Modern witch-y fantasy that I’ve been wanting to read for a year (#oops).


Series basics: Elizabeth Grey is a Witch Hunter arrested for being a witch then saved by witches who become her allies against the terrifying, manipulative, sadistic, terrible king. There’s magic, there’s romance, there’s history and conspiracy and excitement and suspense and intrigue. The first book I rated 5 stars for reasons I could neither pinpoint nor articulate. The King Slayer (which I just remembered IS ACTUALLY ALSO THE FINALE) was one of those I-neeeeeeeeeeeeeeed-this-NOW books and I am a horrible person.

September’s just about over by now but I manage to squeeze in a little Everything, Everything to satisfy my need for romance in my utterly loveless life. Assumption: it’s adorable, it’s romantic, it makes me swoon. Immediately after, I definitely watch the movie version (Lil’ Rue all grown up and not dead in the arena!) and oooooooobviously have time to do a review of the adaptation. You should check it out! It’s in the section titled “SHAME.”



It’s spoooooooooky time! And to celebrate the beginning of my favourite month of the year I turn to the totally not spooky at all By Your Side (which I definitely had time to go buy) to continue the making-up-for-my-nonexistent-love-life, with a side of dream-come-true since they are literally STUCK. IN. A. LIBRARY.


I thoroughly enjoyed The Fill-In Boyfirend, I LOVED The Distance Between Us, and I am/was SO ready to adore By Your Side. HENCE, for the purpose of this entirely fictional “review,” imma ignore the scary reviews on goodreads and say HECK YEAH I LOVED IT I SWOONED IT’S ADORABLE KASIE WEST IS A CONTEMPORARY QUEEN and hope for the best.

Next in line is the decidedly spookier A Mad Zombie Party which I got in TWELFTH GRADE, 3 YEARS AGO, the companion sequel to ONE OF MY FAVE SERIES. Obviously it was amazing even with ______ being dead (CRIES), and even with the new POV (which, I’ll admit, is part of why I hadn’t read it yet). A nice dose of that sexier romance side to combat the sugar rush I got from the last two books.


Series basics: Alice’s family dies in a car crash and she moves to live with her grandparents when she starts seeing and being followed by zombies. She falls into the tough-guy crowd at school by falling for resident baddest bad boy Cole Holland (actual swoooooon), whose group SO HAPPENS to be zombie hunters. She joins, and a bunch of crazy awesome shit proceeds to go down for the next three (and four!) books. Showalter’s concept of zombies and zombieism is incredibly unique, and there’s always something interesting going on. Highly recommend!

October is hectic but by now we’ve reached my Reading Week! That’s 7 days off school that I WISH I spent not catching up on homework and instead reading what I actually wanted to read. I mean, dear god woman, haven’t you been bad enough? For this break I fake read…………..nothing, because dammit, I can’t even pretend I would have been able to read here (WHY DID I MAJOR IN HISTORY. WHY DO I LOVE IT SO MUCH IT MAKES ME HATE MYSELF. WHY EVERYTHING. UGH.)

BUT! I did actually start a book! I read a little bit of Outlander (finallyfinallyfinallyfinallyfinally)! It was kind of dull in the beginning but I have hope! For Jamie!


So am I, gorgeous. So am I.

October is killer at Uni and November is worse, so here’s where things get a little fuzzy. Ya see, I knew I wouldn’t get to read much between mid-Oct and literally allllllllllllll of November. I HOPED I would get to something, though, so here we’ll say I spent the next month and a half working my way through the GRISHAVERSE AHHHHH

…which means the last book I read of the month is Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, the one that started it all.


Here’s the thing about this book: I literally have no idea what it or any of the S&B books are really about. Like, I used to think it was about dragons????? Questionable. So let’s jump to November and I’ll tell you all the things I have imagined happened in this series.


  1. Dragons. Lots of dragons.
  2. Fantasy cross between medieval and Imperial Russia
  3. Russian dragons? Some kind of Russia folklore for sure!
  4. Who is this Nikolai and why do I already think I love him???
  5. Hate –> love: Good ol’ Nick starts out bad and gets better…
  6. …OR he’s ‘good’ and goes bad and breaks my heart (really hoping it’s not this one)
  8. Maybe a multi-dimension type-thing where the Fold is kinda like the Fae realm in ToG
  9. I’m hoping for a little Crown conspiracy–political secrets are the best secrets

Overall, here is my prophetic review: an action-packed dark fantasy with magic and adventure and a hefty dose of romance, but not a romance that takes over the plot. Oh, and I loved it, duh.


Aaaaaaand that’s a wrap! I hope you enjoyed this long-ass ‘TBR’ of self-deprecation. I swear, I’m going to try to be better. I’ll pre-write! I’ll read! I’ll exist! I’m sorry!

How do you guys handle school stress and other perpetual busyness, while still making time for reading? Let me know in the comments! Obviously I could use the help.

Aaaaaaaad as of now, I’m going to go and attempt to make up for my lack of reading (read: joy) the entirety of these past four months. My bookshelf is calling and I must go!

xoxo, Brittney

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