Discussion: Popular Books I Have Yet to Read


I have a really bad habit of reading popular books several months to years after their release, after much of the hype has died down and all of my bookish friends have read it and moved on.  I’m constantly reminded of this when I visit a book’s Goodreads page and find that all of my friends posted reviews a few…years ago.

As you may have seen in previous posts, I prefer paperbacks over hardbacks, mainly due to their cost.  This is my main excuse for not immediately jumping on new releases – I tend to wait until they are available in paperback before purchasing and reading them.  Unfortunately, my library isn’t all that fantastic when it comes to recent publications, so I’m pretty much out of luck unless I want to shell out $20+ for a hardback.

As a result of my primarily paperback-buying habits, I’m fairly behind in reading quite a few popular books that have been all over Goodreads and the blogging and booktube communities.  I’ve decided to list eight books that have become increasingly popular within the past 1-2 years that I have yet to read.

1. Anna Dressed in Blood, by Kendare Blake

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. They follow legends and local lore, destroy the murderous dead, and keep pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, now stained red and dripping with blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

Yet she spares Cas’s life.

2. Cress, by Marissa Meyer

In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who’s only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

3. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, by Michelle Hodkin

Mara Dyer believes life can’t get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.

She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her strangely unharmed.
There is.

She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.
She’s wrong.

4. Isla and the Happily Ever After, by Stephanie Perkins

Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on introspective cartoonist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to confront the challenges every young couple must face, including family drama, uncertainty about their college futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.

Featuring cameos from fan-favorites Anna, Étienne, Lola, and Cricket, this sweet and sexy story of true love—set against the stunning backdrops of New York City, Paris, and Barcelona—is a swoonworthy conclusion to Stephanie Perkins’s beloved series.

5. Shadow and Bone, by Leigh Baradugo

Alina Starkov doesn’t expect much from life. Orphaned by the Border Wars, she is sure of only one thing: her best friend, Mal–and her inconvenient crush on him. Until the day their army regiment enters the Fold, a swath of unnatural darkness crawling with monsters. When their convoy is attacked and Mal is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power not even she knew existed.

Ripped from everything she knows, Alina is taken to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. With Alina’s extraordinary power in his arsenal, he believes they can finally destory the Fold. Now Alina must find a way to master her untamed gift and somehow fit into her new life without Mal by her side. But nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. As the threat to the kingdom mounts and her dangerous attraction to the Darkling grows, Alina will uncover a secret that could tear her heart–and her country–in two.

6. A Game of Thrones, by George R.R. Martin

In A Game of Thrones, George R.R. Martin has created a genuine masterpiece, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill the pages of the first volume in an epic series sure to delight fantansy fans everywhere.

In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes of the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

7. Daughter of Smoke and Bone, by Laini Taylor

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages–not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When one of the strangers–beautiful, haunted Akiva–fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

8. Splintered, by A.G. Howard

This stunning debut captures the grotesque madness of a mystical under-land, as well as a girl’s pangs of first love and independence. Alyssa Gardner hears the whispers of bugs and flowers–precisely the affliction that landed her mother in a mental hospital years before. This family curse stretches back to her ancestor Alice Liddell, the real-life inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.” Alyssa might be crazy, but she manages to keep it together. For now. When her mother’s mental health takes a turn for the worse, Alyssa learns that what she thought was fiction is based in terrifying reality. The real Wonderland is a place far darker and more twisted than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, Alyssa must pass a series of tests, including draining an ocean of Alice’s tears, waking the slumbering tea party, and subduing a vicious bandersnatch, to fix Alice’s mistakes and save her family. She must also decide whom to trust: Jeb, her gorgeous best friend and secret crush, or the sexy but suspicious Morpheus, her guide through Wonderland, who may have dark motives of his own.

I’m almost finished with my current read – which of the books from the list above should I read next?  Also, what are some frequently mentioned books that you haven’t had a chance to read yet?

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I am a senior in high school and an avid reader/reviewer, horseback rider, and graphic designer.  Since a young age, I have fostered a love of reading, beginning with my forays into the Nancy Drew series.  I’ve branched out significantly in my reading tastes since then, and my favorite genres include young adult, romance, mystery, and thriller.  I’m constantly trying to expand my horizons, however, so I do dabble in other genres.  While I’m not reading, I volunteer at a hippotherapy center and a veterinary clinic, practice agility with my dogs, play piano, and sketch.
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8 thoughts on “Discussion: Popular Books I Have Yet to Read

  1. Cress is AMAZING!! I actually loved that one more than any other in the series. I haven’t read Game of Thrones either and I think that is one book I honestly have no interest in reading. It just doesn’t seem like it’s for me.


    • I’ve heard so many people ranting and raving about Cress, so I’m hoping it’ll live up to my expectations! And Game of Thrones definitely isn’t for everyone – I’ve heard a lot of readers choose not to pick up the series mainly because of the content or the sheer length of the books (so daunting!).


  2. I was expecting to go down this list and be like YOU HAVEN’T READ THAT but I haven’t read pretty much any of these either! LOL! I just read Cress like two weeks ago, I know you’ve probably sick of hearing your need to read it, but seriously it’s brilliant, my favourite in the series so far. The only other one on this list is Shadow and Bone, which although is a really great book I think it’s pretty over hyped. I’ve been wanting to read the Splintered and The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer series, but there are just TOO MANY books in the world! Great post!!


    • Haha I’m glad to hear that I’m not alone in continually putting off these books! I’m very excited to read Cress (and I have been for several months now), so I’m not quite sure why I haven’t picked it up yet. I’ll likely be starting it very soon, though, so hopefully I can say I enjoyed it as much as everyone else! I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the Shadow and Bone series, and I think that’s why it’s been sitting on my bookshelf for so long. It has a very creepy premise/summary, so I’ve been a little hesitant to start it. And you summed it up perfectly about there being way too many books!

      Liked by 1 person

      • If you read it soon, you’ll be caught up in time for Winter! Shadow and Bone’s premise makes it sound creepier then it is.


  3. If you are a psychological thriller fan, definitely read Mara Dyer next! It’s the perfect type of read for Fall, and while I’ve seen very divided reviews for it (people either seem to love it or hate it, depending if they can get on board with the paranormal and psychological aspects) it seems to evoke a strong reaction no matter what.


  4. Pingback: First Blogiversary | Brewing Up Books

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