Tuesday, November 28, 2017

[Top Ten Tuesday] Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish. A prompt is given each week, and I hope to do it every week so I always have something going up on Tuesdays. This week I am talking about ten books on my winter TBR! Some of these books have been on other TBR lists, but I am hopefully going to finally get to them this winter. Before spring of 2018 I am hoping to read all of these books.

Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore 

I cannot believe I haven't read this book yet! I pre-ordered it and got it on the release date and I have heard nothing but amazing things. I cannot wait to finally pick this book up! I almost never buy myself books anymore so I hope I love it. If it's anything like it's gorgeous cover I know I will.


Love grows such strange things.

For nearly a century, the Nomeolvides women have tended the grounds of La Pradera, the lush estate gardens that enchant guests from around the world. They’ve also hidden a tragic legacy: if they fall in love too deeply, their lovers vanish. But then, after generations of vanishings, a strange boy appears in the gardens.

The boy is a mystery to Estrella, the Nomeolvides girl who finds him, and to her family, but he’s even more a mystery to himself; he knows nothing more about who he is or where he came from than his first name. As Estrella tries to help Fel piece together his unknown past, La Pradera leads them to secrets as dangerous as they are magical in this stunning exploration of love, loss, and family.

A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallard 

I actually had my eye on this book for a while, I really love the cover and I thought the synopsis sounded interesting, but I never picked it up. My birthday was back in October and my fiancé gave it to me as a gift! I was pretty excited, since I don't believe he knew I was interested in the book, so if he picked it out for me specifically maybe it's more up my ally than I originally thought!


The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.

From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.

The 13th Gift by Joanna Huist 

I Googled "Christmas books around family" and this was one of the few that popped up, so I requested it from my library. Like almost all of the Christmas books you'll see on this list, I don't know much about it and I am letting myself be surprised. Expect a lot of Christmas reviews your way!


After the unexpected death of her husband, Joanne Huist Smith had no idea how she would keep herself together and be strong for her three children--especially with the holiday season approaching. But 12 days before Christmas, presents begin appearing on her doorstep with notes from their "True Friends." As the Smiths came together to solve the mystery of who the gifts were from, they began to thaw out from their grief and come together again as a family. This true story about the power of random acts of kindness will warm the heart, a beautiful reminder of the miracles of Christmas and the gift of family during the holiday season.

The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus by L. Frank Baum

I actually had an interest in this book last year but never picked it up. It's by the same author who wrote the Wizard of Oz books, and although I haven't read them, I hear great things about both the Oz books and this one. 


Every child knows about Santa Claus, the jolly man who brings gifts to all on Christmas. There are many stories that tell of his life, but the delightful version relayed in The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus is by far the most charming and original of all. Only L. Frank Baum, the man who created the wonderful land of Oz, could have told Santa's tale in such rich and imaginative detail.

The Christmas Town by Donna VanLiere 

This was one of the books on the list when I Googled about Christmas books. It sounded cute and I thought I'd try it out! Hopefully I like it!


Lauren Gabriel spent many years of her childhood in foster homes, wishing her mother would come back for her and be the family she needs. Now twenty-years-old, she still longs for a place that she can truly call home. Her work as a cashier is unfulfilling, and at Christmas it’s unbearable with the songs and carols and chatter of Christmas that she hears throughout the day.

When Lauren ends her shift one night, she finds herself driving aimlessly in order to avoid returning to her lonely apartment. And when she witnesses a car accident she is suddenly pulled into the small town of Grandon, first as a witness but then as a volunteer for the annual fundraiser for Glory’s Place, a center for single mothers and families who need assistance. Could this town and its people be the home she has always longed for?

Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire 

This cover is super cool. All I know about this book is that it's a Nutcracker retelling. I did something stupid and glanced over some reviews and I saw some not too promising things but I am not letting it affect my reading experience. I requested it from the library and I am really excited to give it a try.


In this imaginative novel rooted in the rich soil of early-nineteenth-century German Romanticism, beloved New York Times bestselling author Gregory Maguire twins an origin legend of the famous Nutcracker with the life of Drosselmeier, the toymaker who carves him.

Gregory Maguire’s novels have been called "bewitching," "remarkable," "extraordinary," "engrossing," "amazing," and "delicious." Having brought his legions of devoted readers to Oz in Wicked, Wonderland in After Alice and Dickensian London in Lost, Maguire now takes us to the Black Forest of Bavaria and Munich of the Brothers Grimm and E. T. A. Hoffman. Hiddensee recreates the backstory of the Nutcracker, reimaging how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how it magically guided an ailing little girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a snowy Christmas Eve. It also brings to life the mysterious godfather Drosselmeier—the ominous, canny, one-eyed toymaker made immortal by Petipa and Tchaikovsky’s ballet—who presents the once and future Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter.

But Hiddensee is not just a retelling of a classic story. Maguire discovers in the flowering of German Romanticism a migrating strain of a Hellenic mystery-cult, and ponders a profound question: how a person who is abused by life, short-changed and challenged, can access secrets that benefit the disadvantaged and powerless. Ultimately, Hiddensee, offers a message of hope. If the compromised Godfather Drosselmeier can bring an enchanted Nutcracker to a young girl in distress, perhaps everyone, however lonely or marginalized on the eve of a winter holiday, has something precious to share.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

I have had this book on my shelves for at least four years. I hear so many wonderful things about it. However, I also hear it's a slow book and it can take a while to get into it. I tried reading it twice before but I was either too busy or feeling close to a slump so I had to put it down. I really want to give it another shot so I am hoping it'll be great for winter.


The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway - a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love - a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke 

I have heard great things about this book, but the size alone has had me a bit intimidated. I have had it on my shelf for quite some time now so I am just going to sit down and try to read it sometime this winter. I am really excited and I hope to love it as much as everyone else seems to.

English magicians were once the wonder of the known world, with fairy servants at their beck and call; they could command winds, mountains, and woods. But by the early 1800s they have long since lost the ability to perform magic. They can only write long, dull papers about it, while fairy servants are nothing but a fading memory.

But at Hurtfew Abbey in Yorkshire, the rich, reclusive Mr Norrell has assembled a wonderful library of lost and forgotten books from England's magical past and regained some of the powers of England's magicians. He goes to London and raises a beautiful young woman from the dead. Soon he is lending his help to the government in the war against Napoleon Bonaparte, creating ghostly fleets of rain-ships to confuse and alarm the French.

All goes well until a rival magician appears. Jonathan Strange is handsome, charming, and talkative-the very opposite of Mr Norrell. Strange thinks nothing of enduring the rigors of campaigning with Wellington's army and doing magic on battlefields. Astonished to find another practicing magician, Mr Norrell accepts Strange as a pupil. But it soon becomes clear that their ideas of what English magic ought to be are very different. For Mr Norrell, their power is something to be cautiously controlled, while Jonathan Strange will always be attracted to the wildest, most perilous forms of magic. He becomes fascinated by the ancient, shadowy figure of the Raven King, a child taken by fairies who became king of both England and Faerie, and the most legendary magician of all. Eventually Strange's heedless pursuit of long-forgotten magic threatens to destroy not only his partnership with Norrell, but everything that he holds dear.


The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon 

This is another series I hear a lot of great things about. Like I said earlier, I don't buy books for myself often. However late summer of this year I was in Goodwill and saw this book, hardcover, on the shelf for like a dollar and I snatched it up. I am hoping I will love it so I can continue with the series. 


The year is 2059. Nineteen-year-old Paige Mahoney is working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at Seven Dials, employed by a man named Jaxon Hall. Her job: to scout for information by breaking into people's minds. For Paige is a dreamwalker, a clairvoyant and, in the world of Scion, she commits treason simply by breathing.

It is raining the day her life changes for ever. Attacked, drugged and kidnapped, Paige is transported to Oxford – a city kept secret for two hundred years, controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. Paige is assigned to Warden, a Rephaite with mysterious motives. He is her master. Her trainer. Her natural enemy. But if Paige wants to regain her freedom she must allow herself to be nurtured in this prison where she is meant to die.

The Right To Write by Julia Cameron 

I have had this book on my shelf for a while. I think I bought it during college on a whim and now I am interested in reading it, along with other writing books. I recently wrote a book for NaNoWriMo and I want to take it seriously and see if I can do something with it. I thought a little reading on different ways to write, edit, and even create would help me grow as a writer. 


What if everything we have been taught about learning to write was wrong? In The Right to Write, Julia Cameron's most revolutionary book, the author asserts that conventional writing wisdom would have you believe in a false doctrine that stifles creativity. With the techniques and anecdotes in The Right to Write, readers learn to make writing a natural, intensely personal part of life. Cameron's instruction and examples include the details of the writing processes she uses to create her own bestselling books. She makes writing a playful and realistic as well as a reflective event. Anyone jumping into the writing life for the first time and those already living it will discover the art of writing is never the same after reading The Right to Write.

Thank you for reading!

What are some books you plan on reading this winter? Tell me in the comments or link me to your own Top Ten Tuesday lists!


  1. Looks like a great list of books to read this winter. Have you thought about joining the 12 Books of Christmas Challenge that I'm hosting? You don't have to commit to reading 12 books to join, and it looks like you already plan on reading some holiday themed books anyway.

    Have a great week. - Katie

    1. Oh! I will look into that! Thank you for telling me about it :D

  2. I caved and finally read The Night Circus this year and am super glad I did! Hope you get to it!

  3. Loving all of the Christmas-y choices on this list! I really struggled with The Night Circus as well and only got through it because it was a library book or it would've taken me forever to read. it is super slow and it just felt like one of those books where nothing really happened? Still, it is nice to cross a book off the list, so good luck : )

    1. Thank you! Yeah I am hoping I can get some enjoyment out of it. I hear great things but the fact that it's known for being a bit slower paced worries me a bit.

      Thank you for stopping by! Have a great day :)

  4. I have The Artist's Way on hold at the library. I've heard great things about her process. The Santa one by Baum looks great too. Wow! I'm adding a lot to my reading list. Thanks!

    1. Of course!! Sorry this response is so late! I am realizing I missed a bunch of old notifications!

  5. Wild Beauty is also on my TBR. The cover is lovely and I hope the book's contents are just as wonderful for you! I also want to read The Bone Season because I've heard so many good things too, and I know it's in my library - I just need to make time for it.

    The Night Circus is a beautiful and stunning read. I know what you mean about it getting hard to get into, but winter is the perfect time to read it if you want to give it another chance <3

    1. (Sorry this is so late! I missed a bunch of old notifications) Wild Beauty is gorgeous! And I ended up loving Night Circus! I still have to get to Bone Season! Thanks for commenting!