Following a TBR, or ‘To Be Read’ list, can be a great way to read. It allocates the unread books to a shelf and separates them from the huge shelf of potential re-reads which you could be doing at about any time.
While I love a good re-read, I cannot wait to finally finish the un-read books on my shelf.
Using a rather flexible system works better for me, as I am sure others will agree. I read based on my mood and interest. Whatever speaks to me – which I am disappointed to say, is never a ‘classic’. Most of the books I haven’t read yet are the classic pieces of literature on my shelves. Its the confronting long pieces which I have put off because I’m afraid of the unsettling reading slump.
Maybe its the fact that the type of English used is a little older?
Maybe its simply the fact books were written a bit different?
I have enjoyed several classics that I read for school, including Frankenstein, Dracula and A Study in Scarlet. Although I have Pride and Prejudice, it took me a lot longer to complete because of the several other potential options in front of me. I was rather attracted to the fast-pace of a fantasy adventure as opposed to the slower run of a Gothic tale or a romance. I love the premise and story of these novels, but its these differences which stop me from reaching for them first.
A large TBR pile can be confronting for most and actually hinder reading as opposed to organising a reading schedule. Its almost counter-productive. A little ironic, am I right?
If I could just have super-speed, I would read all of these books.
- Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights by the Bronte Sisters
- A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
- Renia’s Diary by Renia Spiegel
- The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald
I personally find trying out new things extremely helpful:
I’ll do re-reads of my favourite books to motivate my reading. Pick an old goodie or a longer series to kick-start your reading goals.
Ever participated in a readathon? A large group of people selecting books to suit prompts and completing them in the same month. Sometimes the readathon also allocates fun games such as a photo prompt each day. I’ve done the OWLs Magical Readathon twice now and I loved it. It definitely did something magical as I was able to read fifteen books last April! The greatest number of books I’ve ever read in a month before. (I will admit though, only 5 of them were allocated to the readathon. The rest were before and after it was complete.)
Some of the books/series which I quite literally flew through include: Vampire Academy, Percy Jackson, The Selection, Bloodlines, The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, Heroes of Olympus, The Grisha Trilogy.
Although they may not be considered ‘classic lit’ or by far, as highly regarded, I still count YA books as reading and valuable stories. A book’s regard among the literary community isn’t important to me. The quality of the writing and the characters are components which I care about. If I can’t connect with the characters, the book is probably something I will forget about in a month’s time.
After all, reading is about finding what you like and reading that. Books were meant to be a gift to the reader. After publication, the writer’s story belongs to the public and as such, people are allowed to critique it. I love books, but I have many quips about many books. If I can’t connect with the characters, of course I won’t vibe with the plot. This is why characterisation is one of the most important factors for me as a reader.
A Wandering Reader