When I joined #bookstagram I joined a vibrant, fun community filled with readers just like me. I found readers that loved books from all genres, readers who were also cat lovers and readers who loved talking about books as much as they loved reading them.
I also discovered a group of readers (just like me) with a fairly large stack of books they bought, but had not read. I have never been able to pass up an opportunity to browse the bookshelves. I love it when my eye catches a beautiful cover. I love when I read the synopsis and know that I just have to read the story. Just like the thrill of wearing a new top or new pair of shoes, there is the thrill of rushing home from the bookshop and diving into a new book. For me, this often means that the books I own that need to be read fall lower and lower on my TBR.
One afternoon while scrolling through instagram I saw a post about Book Of the Month. I immediately knew the books in the picture were BOTM books by the logo at the top of the spine. In the caption the bookstagrammer admitted to owning a pile of BOTM books (just like me) that she had not read (just like me). She and a fellow bookstagrammer were hosting a challenge: #unreadBOTMchallenge. The idea was simple: gather up the unread BOTM books you have, snap a picture, set a goal, read the books, and report back on your progress.
Within the hour I posted my #unreadBOTMstack and by the end of January I had read two and set a goal of two BOTM books a month. I also set a goal that I would finish all my BOTM books by the end of the year, and that I would not buy more BOTM books until I read through about half of the stack.
My progress so far can best be described as win some / lose some:
WIN SOME: I met my goal in January, finishing two BOTM books:
No Exit by Taylor Adams
The Dark Lake by Sarah Bailey
LOSE SOME: One of the February books is by one of my favorite authors, Jasper Fforde. I couldn’t resist so I added Early Riser to my Feburary box. Since I was already getting a box I added The Silent Patient because so many people read it and loved it in January. Then “Go Big or Go Home” kicked in and I added one more book:
Early Riser by Jasper Fforde
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
The Library Book by Susan Orlean
TOTAL UNREAD BOTM BOOKS I STARTED WITH: 10
TOTAL UNREAD BOTM BOOKS I READ: 2
TOTAL BOTM BOOKS I ADDED: 3
TOTAL TO BE READ: 11
The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker (my first buddy read!)
CURRENTLY PLANNING TO READ (this may change based on mood):
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
IF I HAVE TIME (this is almost guaranteed to change based on mood)
Goldenstate by Ben H. Winters
*I am not immediately planning on reading the Jasper Fforde book because I have a vague notion of rereading all of his books in April and May. This is still kinda TBD. Updates to come.*
With one more day / night of reading to go in January my total is 12. I might try to fit in a quick read tonight or start one of the books on this list, but I also might give my poor eyes a break and watch a Hallmark movie. .
Until I gathered all of these books together, I didn’t quite realize HOW MANY books I planned to read in February, THE SHORTEST MONTH. As a book friend said “My reading eyes are bigger than my stomach.” Did I bite off more than I can chew? Probably. I am just stubborn enough to find a way to read all this books? Absolutely. Will I do anything other than read in my free time this month? Probably Not. It’s ok. Reading is my favorite way to spend my time, the football season is all but over, I can totally read while a Hallmark movie is on in the background and I prefer to cuddle up on my couch with my cats, a book and a blanket to going out in the cold and snow (or the heat and rain. Or any weather really. I’m an indoors girl).
I am a little nervous about this – since leaving college I have never planned my immediate TBR books like this. I usually have a book in mind that I want to / should read next. This is a full month of reading, planned in advance. My biggest worry is that I tend to read by mood (which is why I have so many unread books) and a new book always leaps over books I already own (which is why I have banned myself from buying books this month).
Ok. February. Let’s Do This:
The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker (buddy read / must read)
Goldenstate by Ben H. Winters (probably if I have time / might pick a different BOTM book)
ACOTAR by Sarah J. Maas.
A Court of Mist and Fury
A Court of Wings and Ruin
A Court of Frost and Starlight
These are all must reads because I am determined to finish one YA series a month until I have read ALL the YA Series that I own. I read book one of this series in January, so ACOTAR it is for the first month of this challenge.
Some Kind of Happiness
Also must reads. I really like the Author Week feature on my instagram. These books are the ones I am most excited to read!
Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz
the Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
This is my fun hockeyfriend# (we like a backwards hashtag 🙂 ) book club. We each pick a book and then we have a book chat at the end of the month.
She is doing a series reread of Harry Potter. I joined late so I will be starting at book 3. I am going to reread books 1-2 but given my ambitious TBR I most likely will read 3-7 then 1-2.
Valentine’s Day Challenge: Continuing my celebrate a holiday by reading a book challenge (started on NYE / NYD) on Valentine’s Day I will be reading Love By the Book by Melissa Pimental
With 11-12 books scheduled TBR in February I probably don’t have time for anything else BUT I like to read by mood so there may be one or two spur of the moment reads added in or substituted.