Part of being a book blogger, it seems, is having a TBR list so long that you doubt you’ll ever be able to conquer it. There are plenty of different things that make us add books to our TBR list, but before we know it we’ve marked hundreds, maybe even thousands, as ‘to-read’.
From amazing series that have been out in the world for a few years to new releases with insane hype surrounding them there are so many books out there, and most of them end up on our TBR list and soon forgotten about. That’s when the question becomes how do you keep on top of all those books, because if you’re anything like me you’ve forgotten what you’ve added and have tried to mark books as ‘to-read’ more than once.
How Do You Manage Your TBR List?
For me there are a few things a book needs to be added to my TBR list. Every one of us out there probably has the same list, or a very similar one.
Yes you could say this is kind of shallow of me, and there are probably a few great books I’ve missed out on simply because I’m not a massive fan of the cover but I can’t help it. Pretty covers draw my eye and there have even been a few books here and there, Ink and Wild Beauty to name two, that I’ve added to my to-read list purely based on the gorgeous covers.
We all have auto-buy authors. Writers who could release a hardcover edition of their shopping list that we’d rush out to buy. For me there are too many to list but the main three are V.E. Schwab, Samantha Shannon and Marissa Meyer. It doesn’t matter what they release, I won’t even need to see the cover or read the blurb to know it would be a book at the top of my TBR list.
This can backfire. Luckily it hasn’t happened too often to me but there are so many books I added to my to-read list simply because I’ve seen how excited everyone in the blogging community has been for its release and I’ve been swept away by that hype. The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue is one I loved, but one I only picked up because of how excited everyone else seemed to be for it.
Like the hype other blogger’s reviews play a large part in what books I pick up. The Belles, for example, was a book that only made it onto my radar because I saw how excited Marie at Drizzle and Hurricane Books was for it. A lot of the YA contemporary books I’ve added to my TBR list are because of her reviews actually.
There are certain buzzwords (I guess you could call them) that, if I spot in a blurb, will make me automatically add a book to my to-read list, ‘Magical realism’, ‘time travel’, and ‘fairytale retelling’ are three that never fail to grab me, and a book with all three would be a dream come true.
Looking back at this list it’s almost easy to see why I have a mountain of books on my TBR list, and unfortunately I don’t think there’s an easy way to manage it. I tend to be really bad at keeping on top of my to-read list on Goodreads but I know there are people who manage to make it work, and Goodreads is a great tool for bookworms. You can create different shelves based on what you need to manage your TBR list; books that are still to be released, books by genre, or author, or average reviews.
I use an Excel spreadsheet for a lot of my to-read list, simply because this way is easier for me to keep track of when upcoming books are actually being released.
Another way to keep track of upcoming releases, and I would be wary of this one because it could backfire if you’re not careful with your money, is to use Amazon. I pre-order books months and months in advance and then tend to forget about them until, all of a sudden, money comes out of my account and a book arrives on my porch. That way I don’t have to worry about losing books among the hundreds on my to-read list, but like I said it can be risky and one day it’s very likely to backfire on me.
Part of me thinks having an unmanageable to-read list is just part of being a book blogger, but maybe this is just me being really unorganised (please let me know if it is so I can have some motivation to sort out my Goodreads). However with so many amazing books being released, so many incredible series left to discover, and so so many books that could potentially be added to our TBR lists it’s not something that’s going to get any easier anytime soon.
Now Onto the Discussion Part of This Post:
What do you like to see in books you add to your TBR list? Is it the cover, the author, or something completely different?
How do you manage your TBR list? Do you use Goodreads or is there another method you prefer to keep track of upcoming releases?
How unmanageable can your TBR list get?
Let me know in the comments below.