September Shelf-Discipline Wrap-Up

⇒As my Shelf-Discipline month ends, I am patting myself on the back for clearing SIX books from my bookshelves this month! ⇐

fall light

I know that six books may not sound like a lot to you, but any progress made on my out-of-control bookshelves AND my equally chaotic TBR list is a win-win in my book. I probably could have fit in one or two more “shelf books” this month, but I also had two NetGalley books whose release dates came up this month and a library book that came in for me from a lengthy reserve line. We’ll get to the extra books, but first, let’s look at my “official” Shelf-Discipline books that are now in my “Read” (past tense) column:

TheDinnerTHE DINNER by Herman Koch


The reader isn’t necessarily prepared for the dark places this dinner meeting takes us to. The development is shrouded in angst and confusion, but when the truth is revealed, you might wish you had remained in the dark. The Dinner is ominous but magnetic – a well-written book with a dark story and shady characters with few redeeming qualities among them.



It’s X-Men, mixed with WWII and time travel elements. If those themes interest you, this could be the book for you. The book is well written and has a thread of suspenseful tension woven through it from beginning to end. I think I would have enjoyed it a bit more if it had not become a series – I wanted a more solid conclusion.

SWEETHEART by Chelsea Cain


There were thrills in this novel. There was raw emotion. There was also confusion and stupidity in this novel. But it all came together for another seductive addition to the series. Gretchen Lowell is a sadistic and cunning antagonist. As much as I hate her, I love her resolve and strategy. She’s a thinker. And as much as I want to love Archie Sheridan, his flaws were overwhelming in this book. Gretchen is a bitch of a villain; however, while the first book of the series, Heartsick, made me love Archie, Sweetheart yanked my reins as more damaged, sick, and twisted layers were exposed. I’m invested in this series and I’m just two books in.



What is it about Celeste Ng’s writing that immediately sucks you into a  vortex that is often haunting and inescapable? That is certainly descriptive of Everything I Never Told You. It’s so layered, and that’s what made it an excellent read. It’s a story of the character of a family with their own special set of trials and triumphs. It’s a story of lives overloaded with love, lives going unnoticed, and lives hovering somewhere in between. It’s a showcase of all the mistakes and all the second tries that happen behind closed doors. And I thought it was worthy of a strong 4 stars.



I didn’t hate it, but Tumbledown Manor just didn’t deliver what I wanted from it. It hit the ground running and I was entirely invested… at first. However, that same energy did not continue throughout the story and eventually just petered out into disconnected snippets of events that only masqueraded as romance and never actually became interesting. I wanted a romantic do-it-yourself story and it turned out to be only half of one and even less of the other. It just wasn’t the book for me.

PERSONAL by Lee Child


Can Jack Reacher be any more of a hero?! Even when he’s operating under the shadow of past failures, he’s damn good under pressure. I think I have read this particular book in the series before, but if you’re a fan, you can never get too much Reacher. I need to catch up on this series because I have the NetGalley of the latest book, Past Tense, queued up and ready to go.

🍁🍂As I mentioned earlier, I was also able to knock out two NetGalley ARCs this month:

THE FORBIDDEN PLACE by Susanne Jansson


OK, so I wanted this book to be so much more than it is. It is a crime mystery/thriller that has whisperings of something sinister and creepy underneath the surface. It is not a horror story, but I’m thinking that maybe it would have been better if it was.

two-kids-silhouette-24GUESS WHO by Chris McGeorge


I did not enjoy this book. I felt it was too derivative – specifically of the movie, Saw. And the dual timeline fell apart toward the end, making the story feel disjointed and, at one point, like you had entered a different (almost better) story altogether.

UPROOTED by Naomi Novik


A truly unique fairytale. Uprooted tells the story of a small-village girl who ends up with abilities beyond what she knows how to handle. What I love about this book: the intricate story, the fabulous magic, the flawed heroes, and the unlikely romance. Although I enjoyed the book and I think Novik is a fantastic storyteller, there were times when I felt like it went a bit off the rails, hence the 3.5 rating. It wasn’t bad, but it became a bit disjointed in the end.

🍁🍂I also fit in two audiobooks this month, which I won’t break down, but I’ll list below:

The Cove  (FBI Thriller #1) THE COVE by Catherine Coulter


Triptych (Will Trent, #1) TRIPTYCH by Karin Slaughter

🍁🍂So as I say goodbye to the final days of September, I look forward to my spooky October TBR list (which I started building on September 1st!) because – if I stick to it – I’ll be able to clear even more books off of my shelves!

#shelfdiscipline #cleartheshelf #readwhatyouown



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