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 comments for “Ten Books That Have Been on my TBR List the Longest

  1. February 6, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    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.

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:25 am

      My friend raved about the book – I’m not very into reading about serial murders, but I do like period mysteries.

  2. February 6, 2018 at 7:43 pm

    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.

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:28 am

      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.

      • February 7, 2018 at 4:42 pm

        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. February 6, 2018 at 7:43 pm

    I haven’t read any of these but would love to read Frog Music and IQ84.

  4. February 6, 2018 at 7:44 pm

    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.

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:30 am

      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!

  5. Susie | Novel Visits
    February 6, 2018 at 7:56 pm

    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.

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:31 am

      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?

  6. litaddictedbrit
    February 7, 2018 at 1:28 am

    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.

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:32 am

      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?

  7. February 7, 2018 at 1:51 am

    I really enjoyed 1Q84. It’s weird, but fascinating. 🙂 My TTT

    • February 7, 2018 at 7:33 am

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

  8. February 7, 2018 at 12:23 pm

    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!

    • February 7, 2018 at 10:47 pm

      I’ll have to check that out! Hope you enjoy Bleak House.

      • February 11, 2018 at 8:11 pm

        Thanks, me too!

  9. February 8, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    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.

  10. February 19, 2018 at 9:38 am

    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.

  11. April 8, 2018 at 9:56 am

    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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