Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread


Top Ten Tuesday is brought to you by the super-awesome fantastical The Broke and the Bookish

Confession: I have a major book buying compulsion. If I go anywhere NEAR a bookstore I HAVE TO BUY SOMETHING. My reading habits can’t keep up with my buying habits and that leaves me with shelves of unread books. The following books are books that I’ve actively hunted down, but have been sitting on my shelf, unread, for a year or more.

Book pic

Geek Love by Katherine Dunn: This book was recommended to me years ago and it sounded so weird and wonderful that I just had to have it. Now I have to actually read it, because it’s been collecting dust for too long.

The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen:  Guys, try not to judge me too harshly but I have never read any of Sarah Dessen’s books *runs away and hides*. I know! I know! I picked this up hoping that it will be a good introduction to her, but I just haven’t gotten around to it.

The Summer Before Boys By Nora Raleigh Baskin: Nora Raleigh Baskin also wrote Anything But Typical which comes highly recommended in the special education scene, so I was eager to get my hands on this one as well. I figured it would be nice summer reading, but summer came and went and it’s still unread.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson:  Anyone who knows me knows I love books about heavy topics (I’m a psychologist who works in a high school—I like when my reading material mimics the real life issues I’m addressing with students). I know this book is about some serious stuff, though I’m not exactly sure what that “stuff” is because it’s been sitting on my shelf for over 2 years.

Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You by Joyce Carol Oates: I wanted this book because I’m a fan of Joyce Carol Oates’ short stories and I was really interested in reading something longer by her. BUT I made a mistake and read some of the mixed reviews on Goodreads and then I became less interested in reading something longer by her.

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys: I love historical fiction and I especially love historical fiction from this era (1940s). I hear nothing but GOOD THINGS about this book. I have absolutely no excuse as to why I have been using this as a night-stand drink coaster for over a year.

The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson: Let’s review: So far, we’ve learned that I like historical war fiction and emotionally heavy stuff. Know what else I’m really into? SERIAL KILLERS. The psychology of it all is really fascinating to me. So when I heard that Maureen Johnson was writing a thriller that is loosely based upon the Jack the Ripper murders, I had to have it. I pre-ordered that shit. But *womp womp* it’s still unread.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon: I love love love Michael Chabon (What’s not to love– he’s from Pittsburgh and he’s a good writer).  I’ve read most of what he’s written, but I failed to even attempt this Pulitzer Prize winner. I’ve owned this one for over 4 years *hangs head in shame*

My Most Excellent Year by Steve Kluger: I think Steve Kluger is great. His books are so FUN and FUNNY they make me so HAPPY.  Bonus: the books I’ve read by him are mostly set up in letter form, so they end up being really quick reads. SO WHY HAVE I NOT READ THIS ONE?! I DON’T KNOW. I JUST DON”T KNOW.

 The Creative Habit Learn It and Use It for Life by Twyla Tharp: I ordered this book after I saw Twyla’s production of Movin’ Out on Broadway in 2004. I was blown away by the concept and the production and I wanted to learn everything I could possibly learn about Twyla’s “creative habit”. I’ll get to it one day.


Talk it out: Are there any books on your shelves that you’ve been neglecting for much too long? Have you read any of these books and/or have any strong feelings as to why I need to immediately read a certain book on this list?


39 thoughts on “Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

  1. Wow you have a lot of good books there!! You definitely gotta read Speak and anything by Sarah Dessen! Speak is one of my all-time favs, it’s really really good! My Most Excellent Year and Between Shades of Gray are definitely ones I want to read too!!

    I’m from Pittsburgh too… I love finding other book bloggers from my home-area!! I feel like there are very few of us, but maybe I just don’t know what’s out there 🙂

    Here’s My TTT

    • Yay! Another Pittsburgh book blogger and Steeler fan! So nice to know that there are others in the area. I definitely plan on getting most of these books read THIS YEAR. We’ll see *fingers crossed*

  2. I have the exact same compulsion. Maybe we need to start a support group.
    I cannot say no to a pretty cover, cheap book or best seller even if my life depended on it.

  3. I own the Michael Chabon one too. And haven’t read it. His books sound like I should love them but so far, I’m not completely overwhelmed by them. I haven’t read that particular Joyce Carol Oates novel but I love her books and even a bad JCO novel, is a good book in my opinion.

  4. I’m totally with you on this one — I simply cannot walk out of a bookstore without buying something. Seriously, it has NEVER happened. At least I’m not alone, right?

    Oh, and I’ve never read Dessen either. I have a couple of her books, just haven’t gotten around to them. And, you HAVE to read THE NAME OF THE STAR. It’s actually not that emotionally heavy. I thought it was going to be, but it was actually funny and kind of lighthearted despite the heavy subject matter.

    • Bookstores are my THERAPY. I’ve read a couple other of Maureen Johnson’s books and they have all been pretty light and funny. The Name of the Star is definitely going on my spring TBR list.

  5. The Michael Chabon book is EXCELLENT – I read it for book club a number of years ago and was blown away. still haven’t read his others though . . .

  6. I really want to read The Name of the Star! I’ve heard some pretty good things about it. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts when you finally get to it 🙂

  7. I bought The Truth About Forever awhile ago too and it’s still sitting on my shelf. The Name of the Star is really good – I have an obsession with Jack the Ripper so I had to have that one and I actually read it right away (which doesn’t often happen)!

    ~Marie @ Ramblings of a Daydreamer
    My Top Ten Tuesday

  8. Until last year I had never read any Dessen either:) My favorite of hers is This Lullaby, but The Truth About Forever is good too. The Name of the Star was awesome! And although I don’t own them (my library does) I am really ashamed to say I haven’t read Speak or Between Shades of Gray either. I did read Sepetys’ Out of the Easy, which was wonderful (another book for you to buy in the future:)

    Thanks for hopping by my TTT!

  9. I’ve had Kavalier for AGES but who knows if I will actually read it. I also have The Mysteries of Pittsburgh from him and still haven’t read it, yikes.

  10. My book-buying habits are pretty similar. I bet it’s a problem of most book lovers. I remember buying The Truth About Forever because it sounded amazing. But Speak? Oh it’s amazing.
    Thanks for stopping by!
    Deidra @ Simply Books.

  11. I read Speak last year with a friend – OMG it’s SO SO SO good and quite a quick read! The Name of the Star is definitely on my want-to-read list too.

    It’s sort of interesting, going through these posts, I’m just adding more and more books to my “want to read” list.. which is going to just up the number of books I buy, and have YET to read. hahahah 😀

    April @

  12. I read it forever ago, but I’m pretty sure Speak was amazing. And The Truth About Forever is one of my favorite Sarah Dessen books–get on it! Also, thanks for the comment on my blog, re: The Fault in Our Stars and Looking for Alaska being intense, but not as much. I appreciate the warning–I may not read that for a while, for The Fault in Our Stars destroyed me. Thanks for sharing and stopping by!

    Rachel @ Beauty and the Bookshelf

  13. NONE of the Sarah Dessen books?!?! D:
    That must be remedied asap! The Truth About Forever is one of my favorites so I really hope you’ll get around to it soon. 🙂

    I haven’t read Between Shades of Gray, but a lot of people say it’s really good. Heart-wrenching and emotionally traumatic, granted, but hey, I think those books are the best.

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