A Final Unread Shelf Update for 2018
I started 2018 with roughly 70 books on my unread shelf, and then when I checked in the summer, it was closer to 85. Now several months later, I’m sure it’s at least 100. I discovered romance novels this year, so now I have plenty of books on my Kindle that I have not read yet. But I did want to do one final check on #theunreadshelfproject2018. From my original post in February, then my post in June, I talked about ten books that I wanted to be sure and read before the end of the year. I have read six of those ten, but I know I will get around to the remaining four soon. Part of the Unread Shelf Project was to limit your book buying habits, which I did not do so well with. Whoops. But of the books I bought this year, these three are the ones I’m most excited about reading.
Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty
Goodreads Description: Could ten days at a health resort really change you forever? In Liane Moriarty’s latest page-turner, nine perfect strangers are about to find out...
Nine people gather at a remote health resort. Some are here to lose weight, some are here to get a reboot on life, some are here for reasons they can’t even admit to themselves. Amidst all of the luxury and pampering, the mindfulness and meditation, they know these ten days might involve some real work. But none of them could imagine just how challenging the next ten days are going to be.
Frances Welty, the formerly best-selling romantic novelist, arrives at Tranquillum House nursing a bad back, a broken heart, and an exquisitely painful paper cut. She’s immediately intrigued by her fellow guests. Most of them don’t look to be in need of a health resort at all. But the person that intrigues her most is the strange and charismatic owner/director of Tranquillum House. Could this person really have the answers Frances didn’t even know she was seeking? Should Frances put aside her doubts and immerse herself in everything Tranquillum House has to offer – or should she run while she still can?
It’s not long before every guest at Tranquillum House is asking exactly the same question. Combining all of the hallmarks that have made her writing a go-to for anyone looking for wickedly smart, page-turning fiction that will make you laugh and gasp, Liane Moriarty’s Nine Perfect Strangers once again shows why she is a master of her craft.
Why I’m Excited: I have loved every Liane Moriarty book I’ve read so far; What Alice Forgot and Big Little Lies are my favorites. I’ve heard good things about Nine Perfect Strangers so far and am pumped to read it. I still have two of her earlier books to read after this one, so I look forward to being a Liane Moriarty completist!
Sisters First by Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Pierce Bush
Goodreads Description: Born into a political dynasty, Jenna and Barbara Bush grew up in the public eye. As small children, they watched their grandfather become president; just twelve years later they stood by their father's side when he took the same oath. They spent their college years being trailed by the Secret Service and chased by the paparazzi, with every teenage mistake making national headlines. But the tabloids didn't tell the whole story of these two young women forging their own identities under extraordinary circumstances. In this book they take readers on a revealing, thoughtful, and deeply personal tour behind the scenes of their lives, with never-before-told stories about their family, their adventures, their loves and losses, and the special sisterly bond that fulfills them.
Why I’m Excited: I’ve long been intrigued by the Bush family (along with the Kennedys) and picked this signed copy from Alabama Booksmith in Birmingham this summer. Now that President George H.W. Bush has passed, I want to give this a read soon.
War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
Goodreads Description: War and Peace broadly focuses on Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812 and follows three of the most well-known characters in literature: Pierre Bezukhov, the illegitimate son of a count who is fighting for his inheritance and yearning for spiritual fulfilment; Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, who leaves his family behind to fight in the war against Napoleon; and Natasha Rostov, the beautiful young daughter of a nobleman who intrigues both men.
As Napoleon’s army invades, Tolstoy brilliantly follows characters from diverse backgrounds—peasants and nobility, civilians and soldiers — as they struggle with the problems unique to their era, their history, and their culture. And as the novel progresses, these characters transcend their specificity, becoming some of the most moving, and human, figures in world literature.
Why I’m Excited: Anna Karenina is one of my favorite books of all time, and I think it’s time for me to give War and Peace a try. I know it will take me a while to read, so I figure it’s good to start it over the winter.
2018 has been a fantastic reading year for me, and I look forward to all the good books I plan to read in 2019.
What are some of the books on your shelf that you’re looking forward to reading?