Books I Recently Added to My TBR

I am always curious to know what books people add to their TBRs, and that has inspired me to write this post! I have done a few of these in the past, and I always love the discussions that happen in the comments. So here we are again!

Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell

Drawing on Maggie O’Farrell’s long-term fascination with the little-known story behind Shakespeare’s most enigmatic play, HAMNET is a luminous portrait of a marriage, at its heart the loss of a beloved child.

Warwickshire in the 1580s. Agnes is a woman as feared as she is sought after for her unusual gifts. She settles with her husband in Henley street, Stratford, and has three children: a daughter, Susanna, and then twins, Hamnet and Judith. The boy, Hamnet, dies in 1596, aged eleven. Four years or so later, the husband writes a play called Hamlet.

Award-winning author Maggie O’Farrell’s new novel breathes full-blooded life into the story of a loss usually consigned to literary footnotes, and provides an unforgettable vindication of Agnes, a woman intriguingly absent from history.

First of all, how great is they cover. I can not wait to see it in person! I also love Maggie O’Farrell’s writing so I didn’t have to know anything about Hamnet in order to add it to my TBR. The fact that it is Shakespeare inspired is just a bonus! It comes out in March and I hope to read it and review as soon as I get a my hands on a copy.

Midnight In Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest Nuclear Disaster by Adam Higginbotham

April 25, 1986, in Chernobyl, was a turning point in world history. The disaster not only changed the world’s perception of nuclear power and the science that spawned it, but also our understanding of the planet’s delicate ecology. With the images of the abandoned homes and playgrounds beyond the barbed wire of the 30-kilometer Exclusion Zone, the rusting graveyards of contaminated trucks and helicopters, the farmland lashed with black rain, the event fixed for all time the notion of radiation as an invisible killer.

Chernobyl was also a key event in the destruction of the Soviet Union, and, with it, the United States’ victory in the Cold War. For Moscow, it was a political and financial catastrophe as much as an environmental and scientific one. With a total cost of 18 billion rubles—at the time equivalent to $18 billion—Chernobyl bankrupted an already teetering economy and revealed to its population a state built upon a pillar of lies.

The full story of the events that started that night in the control room of Reactor No.4 of the V.I. Lenin Nuclear Power Plant has never been told—until now. Through two decades of reporting, new archival information, and firsthand interviews with witnesses, journalist Adam Higginbotham tells the full dramatic story, including Alexander Akimov and Anatoli Dyatlov, who represented the best and worst of Soviet life; denizens of a vanished world of secret policemen, internal passports, food lines, and heroic self-sacrifice for the Motherland. Midnight in Chernobyl, award-worthy nonfiction that reads like sci-fi, shows not only the final epic struggle of a dying empire but also the story of individual heroism and desperate, ingenious technical improvisation joining forces against a new kind of enemy.

Of course I know about Chernobyl, but only the very basic details. There was a popular TV series on HBO called Chernobyl that I have heard incredible things about. I have been interested in watching the show but I want to go into it with more knowledge. I was recommended Midnight in Chernobyl and I hope to get to it soon. I plan on listening to the audiobook!

Oona Out of Order by Margarita Montimore

Just because life may be out of order, doesn’t mean it’s broken.

It’s New Year’s Eve 1982, and Oona Lockhart has her whole life before her. At the stroke of midnight she will turn nineteen, and the year ahead promises to be one of consequence. Should she go to London to study economics, or remain at home in Brooklyn to pursue her passion for music and be with her boyfriend? As the countdown to the New Year begins, Oona faints and awakens thirty-two years in the future in her fifty-one-year-old body. Greeted by a friendly stranger in a beautiful house she’s told is her own, Oona learns that with each passing year she will leap to another age at random. And so begins Oona Out of Order…

Hopping through decades, pop culture fads, and much-needed stock tips, Oona is still a young woman on the inside but ever changing on the outside. Who will she be next year? Philanthropist? Club Kid? World traveler? Wife to a man she’s never met?

I am always searching for time travel books that do something different. I think it is really easy for time travel to feel cliché, but something about Oona Out Of Order sounds unique. I love the idea that she has no control over where she ends up. I think it is going to be a quirky book!

Wanderers by Chuck Wendig

A decadent rock star. A deeply religious radio host. A disgraced scientist. And a teenage girl who may be the world’s last hope.

Shana wakes up one morning to discover her little sister in the grip of a strange malady. She appears to be sleepwalking. She cannot talk and cannot be woken up. And she is heading with inexorable determination to a destination that only she knows. But Shana and her sister are not alone. Soon they are joined by a flock of sleepwalkers from across America, on the same mysterious journey.

And like Shana, there are other “shepherds” who follow the flock to protect their friends and family on the long dark road ahead.For on their journey, they will discover an America convulsed with terror and violence, where this apocalyptic epidemic proves less dangerous than the fear of it. As the rest of society collapses all around them–and an ultraviolent militia threatens to exterminate them–the fate of the sleepwalkers depends on unraveling the mystery behind the epidemic. The terrifying secret will either tear the nation apart–or bring the survivors together to remake a shattered world.

This book is a brick! It is exactly 800 pages. Normally I avoid books that are this long especially if they are fiction, but something about Wanderers appeals to me. I have discovered that I have will never tire of post-apocalyptic or dystopian novels. I think they all do something a little bit different. They fascinate and terrify me at the same time!

The Foundling by Stacey Halls

London, 1754. Six years after leaving her illegitimate daughter Clara at London’s Foundling Hospital, Bess Bright returns to reclaim the child she has never known. Dreading the worst – that Clara has died in care – the last thing she expects to hear is that her daughter has already been reclaimed – by her. Her life is turned upside down as she tries to find out who has taken her little girl – and why. Less than a mile from Bess’ lodgings in the city, in a quiet, gloomy townhouse on the edge of London, a young widow has not left the house in a decade. When her close friend – an ambitious young doctor at the Foundling Hospital – persuades her to hire a nursemaid for her daughter, she is hesitant to welcome someone new into her home and her life. But her past is threatening to catch up with her and tear her carefully constructed world apart.

Another amazing cover! I seem to be drawn to historical fiction set in 1700s or 1800s London. There is something so atmospheric about London at that time. This book sounds very mysterious and the summary has me very curious. I can’t believe I have to wait until April!

Once Upon An Eid: Stories of Hope and Joy by 15 Muslim Voices

Once Upon an Eid is a collection of short stories that showcases the most brilliant Muslim voices writing today, all about the most joyful holiday of the year: Eid!

Eid: The short, single-syllable word conjures up a variety of feelings and memories for Muslims. Maybe it’s waking up to the sound of frying samosas or the comfort of bean pie, maybe it’s the pleasure of putting on a new outfit for Eid prayers, or maybe it’s the gift-giving and holiday parties to come that day. Whatever it may be, for those who cherish this day of celebration, the emotional responses may be summed up in another short and sweet word: joy. The anthology will also include a poem, graphic-novel chapter, and spot illustrations.

The full list of Once Upon an Eid contributors include: G. Willow Wilson (Alif the Unseen, Ms. Marvel), Hena Khan (Amina’s Voice, Under My Hijab), N. H. Senzai (Shooting Kabul, Escape from Aleppo), Hanna Alkaf (The Weight of Our Sky), Rukhsana Khan (Big Red Lollipop), Randa Abdel-Fattah (Does My Head Look Big in This?), Ashley Franklin (Not Quite Snow White), Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow (Mommy’s Khimar), Candice Montgomery (Home and Away, By Any Means Necessary), Huda Al-Marashi (First Comes Marriage), Ayesha Mattu, Asmaa Hussein, and Sara Alfageeh.

It is not very often that an anthology catches my attention but I am so excited about Once Upon an Eid. I actually saw that Lala from Books and Lala on YouTube was reading this collection and loving it. We have very different reading tastes but I always trust her anthology recommendations!

Ghosts of Harvard by Francesca Serritella

Cadence Archer arrives on Harvard’s campus desperate to understand why her brother, Eric, a genius who developed paranoid schizophrenia took his own life there the year before. Losing Eric has left a black hole in Cady’s life, and while her decision to follow in her brother’s footsteps threatens to break her family apart, she is haunted by questions of what she might have missed. And there’s only one place to find answers.

As Cady struggles under the enormous pressure at Harvard, she investigates her brother’s final year, armed only with a blue notebook of Eric’s cryptic scribblings. She knew he had been struggling with paranoia, delusions, and illusory enemies—but what tipped him over the edge? With her suspicions mounting, Cady herself begins to hear voices, seemingly belonging to three ghosts who walked the university’s hallowed halls—or huddled in its slave quarters. Among them is a person whose name has been buried for centuries, and another whose name mankind will never forget.

Does she share Eric’s illness, or is she tapping into something else? Cady doesn’t know how or why these ghosts are contacting her, but as she is drawn deeper into their worlds, she believes they’re moving her closer to the truth about Eric, even as keeping them secret isolates her further. Will listening to these voices lead her to the one voice she craves—her brother’s—or will she follow them down a path to her own destruction?

If a book is set on a college campus, especially an Ivy League, I will instantly be interested in it. Now I must say that any mystery that has to do with mental health makes me a little nervous because I sometimes have problems with how it is handled. That said, I have seen some reviewers I trust rating Ghosts of Harvard highly so I’m intrigued!

All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace

She will reign.

As princess of the island kingdom Visidia, Amora Montara has spent her entire life training to be High Animancer—the master of souls. The rest of the realm can choose their magic, but for Amora, it’s never been a choice. To secure her place as heir to the throne, she must prove her mastery of the monarchy’s dangerous soul magic.

When her demonstration goes awry, Amora is forced to flee. She strikes a deal with Bastian, a mysterious pirate: he’ll help her prove she’s fit to rule, if she’ll help him reclaim his stolen magic.But sailing the kingdom holds more wonder—and more peril—than Amora anticipated. A destructive new magic is on the rise, and if Amora is to conquer it, she’ll need to face legendary monsters, cross paths with vengeful mermaids, and deal with a stow-away she never expected… or risk the fate of Visidia and lose the crown forever.

I am the right choice. The only choice. And I will protect my kingdom.

I will actually be reading All the Stars and Teeth for a buddy read in March. If I am honest, I don’t know that this is a book I would have ever picked up if it were not for that group, but that is what I love about it. I have found some real gems that way. Also, this is a book about mermaids and pirates so I’m hoping to love it!

17 thoughts on “Books I Recently Added to My TBR

  1. I love Maggie O’Farrell so I’m excited about her latest work. The Chernobyl miniseries was incredible – very hard to watch but I learned so much. My husband read the book you mentioned and he thought it was a great companion to the miniseries. I really like your idea of writing about new additions to the TBR.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I too love TBR lists – you especially seem to read such a wide range! There are a great many interesting books here for me to look into. Curious to see what you think about Hamnet, I haven’t ready anything from Maggie O’Farrell but I’m very curious to see how she tells the story.

    Like

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