Let’s Talk Bookish: The Care and Keeping of a TBR!

I know I’m posting a bit later than Friday, but better late than never? Maybe?

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme, hosted by Rukky @Eternity Books  & Dani @ Literary Lion, where we get to discuss certain topics, share our opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts! I’ve listed the upcoming topics in brief at the end of my post, but check out these pages for more information on October 2020 prompts & a list of past prompts!

Now without further ado… This week’s topic asks us about:

The care and keeping of a tbr

Examples: Do you maintain a TBR physically, online or both? How do you decide which books get to go on your TBR? Do you ever “prune” your TBR to remove old books, how do you decide who stays and who goes? How big is your TBR currently?

WELCOME TO TBR Mountain: LEVEL 1,165

But that gif is literally me maniacally laughing on top of TBR mountain because… My current TBR on Goodreads is currently at 1,165 books and I haven’t even counted my actual TBR.

*takes a second to pause*

👀 👀 👀

*by the way, if anyone wants to be friends on Goodreads you can find me HERE!*



So we already know I keep a TBR on Goodreads and that’s probably my most complete list. Although I first signed up for it in 2012, I only started using it properly in 2018. I did make my way onto the site now and again before then but I guess the majority of the books have been added more recently…

But let’s be clear here…

My Goodreads TBR is a combination of books that I own and books that I wish to own, so I definitely haven’t spent all the money to purchase 1K+ books. Trust, I’d be dead broke otherwise! But I still find this number on Goodreads astonishingly and embarrassingly large. You can say I have a very good relationship with the “Want to read” button. 😂


Of course, I also have my “actual” TBR with all the books I own (physically and digitally). But I don’t have a proper record of all these books so I don’t know how many still need to be read. It’s a lot easier to keep track of my physical TBR without any kind of file (most of the time) as I can see what’s on my shelves, but books on my digital TBR tend to disappear into the void until I remember them at random.


Seeing as my GR list is over 1,000 books, I guess you can say I’m not very discerning when it comes to adding to my TBR? 😂 Here’s how I usually decide:

  • I read the synopsis. If it sounds good or like something I’ll enjoy (which let’s be honest it usually does)
  • I check which of my friends have added it to their list (if any).
  • I then check if any of them have reviewed it, then I’ll quickly skim through a review or two.
  • If no one I know has read/reviewed it, I’ll skim through the first few ratings and reviews to decide whether it’s a go or not.

It’s not an overly complicated process. My taste in books is quite eclectic and it doesn’t take much to pique my interest. Although I do mostly read YA SFF and contemporary romance, I don’t limit myself to any particular genre. A lot of people do stick to their tried and true/comfort zone genres (and that’s cool) but I quite like bouncing around because who knows where I’ll find my next favourite, right?!

going ‘down the tbr hole’

If you can believe it (which you probably can) my GR TBR last year was actually bigger than it is now. When I felt desperately in need of a way to motivate myself to cull the list, I decided to do the “Down the TBR Hole” meme on a weekly basis. For this meme, I’d look at 10-20 books on my TBR and kick off anything that didn’t sound appealing anymore or books that might still sound interesting but I know I’ll never actually buy a copy of or read anytime soon.

I admittedly struggled to kick anything off the list at first but I know realistically I won’t be able to buy all of the books, especially with even more releases piquing my interest with every year that passes. I was doing a pretty good job of shortening the TBR and managed to kick off about 250+ books (maybe even more) until I stopped doing it because I was too busy doing other things… 😬

I rally think I’ll take time to sit down at the end of 2020 (or maybe in 2021) to do a proper clean up because I know there are plenty on this list that I can get rid of, I just really need to make time to do it! My TBR feels more than a little disorganised and I definitely want to take better control of it moving forward!

How do you manage your TBR? Do you find it easy to cull books from your list? Do you get rid of physical books you don’t want to read? What do you do with the digital books you own and are no longer interested in? Curious to see how everyone manages theirs!

13 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Bookish: The Care and Keeping of a TBR!

    • Omg 127! How do you do it?! Haha I just like the sound of so many books and I keep adding them to my TBR 😂 There are still plenty that I haven’t added to my TBR that I also like the sound of. It’s a terrible thing how large my TBR is!

      Liked by 1 person

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  2. Girlll, I just did my usual Friday post today too. xD It’s just one of those weeks. I say, embrace the endless TBR! Why is it a bad thing to have a long one? I read a variety of books, like you, and am also a mood reader, so having endless choices is a great thing!

    Maybe just prioritize and rank like, your top 100 or something. If you have one you definitely want to read within a year, boot it up to #1 and just keep doing that, so you’ll have all your recent top picks right at the top. But if it bothers you enough to go through and take some off, GOOD LUCK!! 🤞

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re totally right though. Why is it bad to have a long TBR? I guess I should separate my Goodreads TBR into different shelves to see which ones I have, which ones I have the chance to buy and the rest 😂 It’s just a matter of taking the time to sort through over 1k books! Haha welp. But I like your suggestions! Thanks Jennifer 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a very good relationship with “Want to Read” button too and I also stopped doing “Down the TBR Hole” meme!
    I have 841 books on my TBR shelf on Goodreads and it keeps growing. I should do a clean up but I’ve been lazy. 🥴

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha what are we like, Andie!? Getting my GR TBR down to 800 books would be goals! I think I managed to get it down to like… 980 or something last year when I was still doing the meme so it IS possible to cut down… It just takes time and I’m lazy too 😂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I think with my own TBR I only count them as on the official TBR once I own them (or have borrowed them). That being said I still have a ton of books on there! Which is why I’ve been going through a purge process over the last year haha. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think I might do that with my Goodreads shelf and actually mark the ones that I own. I do like to keep track of all the books that do sound good although TBH I don’t really look at my GR TBR that often either 😂 Every time I see you do your weekly kick-off the TBR posts, I always think that I should get back to doing it too and then never do! LOL

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, I can’t even remember when my TBR was 100 books 😂 That’s definitely goals! But then again I wonder how many I’d actually have if I started properly filling out my “owned” shelf on GR! I don’t think it’d be more than 150 either 🤔 I do need to clean up my shelf though coz I know there are probs tons on there I don’t even remember adding in the first place!

      Liked by 1 person

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