Ten Books That Have Been on my TBR List the Longest

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is the top ten books that have been on my TBR list the longest.  Most of these are classics, but  not all of them.  This is a good chance to cull my list a bit.  Please weigh in if you’ve read any of these!



  1. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo — I thought I might join in the chapter-a-day readalong this year.  I love the idea, but I figured out really quickly I’d never keep up with it.
  2. Bleak House by Charles Dickens
  3. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  4. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas — I started this last year, and had a hard time getting into it, though I loved The Count of Monte Cristo.  Should I go back to it?
  5. The Whiskey Rebels by David Liss — Liss writes really interesting historical fiction set in the colonial period.  They are sort of mystery/thrillers with a ton of detail.
  6. Ghostwritten and Number9dream by David Mitchell — these are the only books by Mitchell I haven’t read.
  7. A Monstrous Regiment of Women by Laurie R. King — I started this Sherlock Holmes-based series a while ago and loved the first one.  This book sits on my nightstand, along with…
  8. The Alienist by Caleb Carr — a friend insisted I read this some years ago.  It looks like it might be pretty gruesome, but now that it’s a series my interest is piqued.
  9. Frog Music by Emma Donoghue — I like everything Donoghue has written.
  10. IQ84 by Haruki Murakami – I need to read more of his books.

Have you read any of these?  Which ones should I keep on my list?

22 Responses to “Ten Books That Have Been on my TBR List the Longest”

  1. Zezee

    I’m interested in reading the Alienist too because of the TV show. I’ve only seen the first episode, which didn’t sell on the show but made me curious about the book.

  2. Lory @ Emerald City Book Review

    I’m reading Les Miserables – it only takes me about 10 minutes per day, but it does take some awareness not to forget my daily installment (and if I ever get behind it might become discouraging). And I’m sure I read A Monstrous Regiment of Women long ago, along with a few other of the Mary Russell books. If you liked the first one I think you’ll enjoy at least some of the sequels, although it’s one of those long-running series that loses me after a few volumes. And I’ve read The Alienist and found it okay, though gruesome for my taste. AND Bleak House, which I love (huge Victorian novels being one of my favorite things) and Anna Karenina, which I also enjoyed (though I was surprised that it’s not entirely, or even mostly, about Anna). That’s half of your list, an unusual result for me! Good luck picking what to keep and what to let go.

    • curlygeek04

      Thanks for the input! Bleak House is definitely a must read. It sounds like a lot of people are really enjoying the Les Miserables read along. I worried it would feel like too much pressure and then I’d resent the book — its such a great idea though, and it’s so much nicer to read a book like this with other people.

      • Lory @ Emerald City Book Review

        Good point – failing at the readalong would be unfortunate. I think that’s why I’ve resolved to do hardly any challenges other than this one. I think I can manage it, if I concentrate.

  3. 1girl2manybooks

    I’ve only read Les Mis but I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. It does go off on a few tangents (ok, a lot) but it was so much more readable than I expected. I tried IQ84 but it was due back at my library when I was around a third of the way through.

    • curlygeek04

      I’ve been intimidated by Les Miserables, but it’s good to hear that it’s very readable. I may pick it up and see how it goes. I have the same problem with library books!

  4. Susie | Novel Visits

    I usually like Donoghue, too, but my rec would be to skip Frog Music. I know I’m not the only one who was disappointed.

    • curlygeek04

      I recall that the reviews weren’t great, which is why I didn’t get to it immediately. I know it’s not going to be anything like Room but I do like her other historical fiction. Why were you disappointed?

  5. litaddictedbrit

    I’ve had A Monstrous Regiment of Women for years too! I’m not sure if it would quite make a list of the top 10 books I’ve had the longest but it’s definitely been around for a while! I read Frog Music a few years ago and while it isn’t my favourite of Donoghue’s books, I still have it 3 stars because there were elements that I enjoyed! If you’ve liked her other books, it’s worth giving a try.

    • curlygeek04

      I think with Monstrous Regiment I’m hesitant to get into a new and long series. I’ve heard mixed things about Frog Music, can you say what you didn’t love about it?

    • curlygeek04

      Thanks for commenting! Murakami is such a fascinating writer, and I read 1984 last year so I’m interested in how they are connected.

  6. Kristilyn

    I’m participating in a Bleak House read-along starting next month, hosted by Katie from Books and Things on BookTube. My copy is HUGE but I’ve heard really good things so I hope I like it. I haven’t read any of the books on your list!

  7. Jovita

    I haven’t read any of these, but I would like to read Les Miserables and Anna Karenina. I think a chapter a day would work get for some of these longer books.

  8. Links I Loved This Week – 02/11/2018 – Novels And Nonfiction

    […] Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic – Top Ten Books That Have Been On My TBR List The Longest (full list of links here) – was very intriguing, because we’re all guilty of buying books with the intention of reading them asap and then letting them languish for months (or years!) on our shelves. Here were my favorite posts: The Fictional Reader, She Reads Novels, The Bookish Libra, Death By Tsundoku, Hopewell’s Public Library Of Life, Vivacious Reads, The Calico Books and The Book Stop. […]

  9. JaneGS

    I read The Whiskey Rebels, and remembered I didn’t like it, but had to go back to my review to find out why. I love reading about the time frame, but I found one of the two main characters insufferable and the narrative style didn’t work for me.

  10. tapastango

    Bleak House is. Keep it, devour it, listen to it and the magic that only DIckens can weave with words. The first chapter where he describes London in the fog and slush is sublime. IQ84 is okay, but very Murakamish and fantastical.


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