Winter 2020

White Reindeer op houten oppervlak

Winter TBR


2019 in Review


Festive Book Tags (2019)


Winter TBR

  1. A Winters Promise by Christelle Dabos
    At the start of 2019, I made a list of 13 books (8 backlist and 5 new releases) I wanted to read before the year’s up. Only two of them, I haven’t gotten around to. The first is A Winters Promise. This original fantasy novel highly recommended by many a book reviewer and a large part of me expects it to be a 5-star read. I put it off until the winter (mostly because of the title), so December might just be the perfect time for it.


  2. A Shiver of Smoke and Sky by Lisa Lueddecke
    Winter is of course the best time to read polar fantasy, so I held off on picking this one up from my library until a more appropriate time. December has got to be it.
    This book takes place on a snowy island, where the sky glows with certain colours to demonstrate the Goddesses feelings. Through years of watching the lights, the people of the island have come to learn that the red lights offer warning for an inevitable plague that will sweep through their population, killing many. But there’s another threat to the island, lurking beyond the horizon.


  3. The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van de Kolk
    It’s been an unintentional tradition over the past years that I tend to read non-fiction on hard-hitting (medical) topic in the month of December. I did memoirs on dying in 2017, non-fiction on cancer in 2018, and now this. The Body Keeps the Score is a non-fiction book by famous Dutch psychiatrist Bessel van de Kolk on the topic of trauma and PTSD. I’ve been wanting to read this for month, ever since the resident on my psychiatry rotation brought it to my attention. I’m reading it as of writing this post, and will continue to do so throughout the month of December.


  4. The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern
    This novel needs little to no introduction, as it might just be the most hyped book of 2019, for me but also many other readers. The blurb starts with the following: “From the New York Times bestselling author of The Night Circus, a timeless love story set in a secret underground world--a place of pirates, painters, lovers, liars, and ships that sail upon a starless sea.”. This sounds mysterious, magical, lyrical and everything The Nightcircus was, and I can’t wait to read it.


  5. The Last True Poets of The Sea by Julia Drake
    Similar to The Starless Sea, The Last True Poets of the Sea is one of my most anticipated novels of 2019, and because it came out only later in the year, I haven’t gotten to it just yet. This character driven, modern family saga follows Violet and her family, where wrecks seem to run through the generations. This novel interweaves a historical tale of Violet’s grandmother, the lone survivor of a shipwreck, who posed as a boy while working for her future husband with a modern tale of how mental illness, grief and acceptance affect a family.


  6. Before the Devil Breaks You by Libba Bray
    I discovered The Diviners in 2019, and completely fell in love with the series over the course of this year. As the fourth and final book is scheduled for release in February 2020, I plan to read the third entry in the series before that. Not to mention that after the ending of book 2, I can’t wait to see where the story takes us next.


  7. When the Moon Was Ours by Anna Marie McLemore
    It’s no secret that I adore Anna Marie McLemore’s writing. In 2020, two more of her novels are scheduled for publication, and I’m highly anticipating both of them. That being said, I still have on of her backlist titles unread on my shelves: When the Moon Was Ours. This, like many other novels on this list, is a 5-star prediction for me, and perhaps for that reason I’ve been putting it off out of fear of disappointment. I do hope to break that cycle this winter, so I can finally enjoy the magic that this novel has to offer.



Festive Book Tags


2019 In Review



2020 Bookish Goals

You know some people chose a word of the year to live by…? I’ve always thought that was kind of dumb, as how could you possibly capture your goals for an entire year in a single word? Well, guess what: I think I might just have a word for 2020: Enjoy.

Due to a number of circumstances, 2019 has been a year of hard work, and “surviving” rather than “living”. In a way I carried that mentality with me into my reading by setting a lot of goals, creating lists to check off, obligating myself to review every single book I finished… There were times this year where I loved reading, but also times I forgot why I do so in the first: to relax, to escape, to enjoy.
For 2020, I’m still setting some “goals” for myself, but they’re a lot looser than they were last year


  • Pledge no more than 50 books in my Goodreads Reading Challenge. For the past 3 years, I’ve read over 100 books each year, and I notice that a times quantity took priority over quality in my mind. In 2020 I want to cut down on the number of books I read, and only pick up books I’m actually really excited for.

  • Take a break from ARCs There were month where I had fairly strict TBRs this year, mostly because of the ARCs I was receiving that had to be read before their release-date. Although I’m honoured to have been given the opportunity to read these books early, I’m going to take a break from accepting them, in order to remove the “obligation” for reading and reviewing them within a certain time. Obviously: I can make exceptions for the ones that I really can't pass up, or ones that are less time-sensitive.

  • Branch out in genre’s Taking a break from ARCs and new releases also means that I won’t be bound to certain genre’s like YA all the time. That doesn’t mean I won’t read those anymore, but it will give me a bit more room to branch out into genres I don’t often pick up, like I started to do with horror and thrillers in 2019.

  • Don’t review everything I read I tried to review (or at least talk about) everything I read in at least a monthly wrap up this year. Not falling for that again: when I’ve just read a book for fun, and have nothing to say about it, I’m not forcing myself.

  • Stop feeling guilty This is a very personal one that branches out to more than just reading. Ever since I can remember, I struggle to do things just for me. When I take time to relax for an hour and read, I feel guilty for not doing something useful. When I spend 10 euro’s on an audiobook subscription for a month, from which I get a huge amount of enjoyment, I feel guilty for spending that money on myself. I really hope to be able to let go of some of that for 2020.

    All of these are backlist titles (mostly sequels) that I’m very excited about, but just haven’t been able to get to. This included some rereads I’ve been wanting to do for years, but have always felt like I had to prioritize reading new books. New Rules for this list: I’m not going to feel bad for not completing these all by the end of 2020. For all I care these are goals for the decade, or just inspiration for me when I don’t know what to read. 2020 is going to be the year of No Pressure Enjoyment.


  • Read more Brandon Sanderson
    I don’t even care what: I want to read all of this mans work at this point.

  • The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
    (and possibly continue this series!)

  • Darkdawn by Jay Kristoff

  • Before the Devil Breaks You by Libba Bray

  • Re-experience the Harry Potter Series on audio This one is ambitious, but I’ve been wanting to do this for years, and never got to it.

  • The Last True Poets of the Sea by Julia Drake

  • Our Homesick Songs by Emma Hooper

  • When the Moon Was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore

  • Reread The House of God, and continue with Man's 4th Best Hospital by Samuel Shem

  • The Secret of the Commonwealth by Philip Pullman

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