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  • Writer's pictureTerrie

December TBR list - some great titles you might enjoy

Every month I share books I've discovered that, for one reason or another, pique my interest and make it to my growing, no, exploding TBR list. This month is especially dangerous because there are "best of" lists EVERYWHERE and I have to look at them all - and I inevitably find at least one book that I need to read! Now, it's your turn.....which of these are making YOUR TBR list????

Her Last Flight by Beatriz Williams

Genre: Historical Fiction

Published June 2020, 400 pages

Added because: recommended by Ann at #ModernMrsDarcy

Synopsis: in 1947 a woman reporter goes to Kuaui to research forgotten aviator Sam Mallory and discovers the woman who was his flying partner and learns of their lives

The First Woman by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

Genre: General Fiction

Published Oct 2020, 400 pages

Added because: recommended by author Tayari Jones in The Guardian

Synopsis: a powerful feminist rendition of Ugandan origin tales with the main character similar to Eve in Ugandan tales; a coming of age story told contrasting modern with traditional.

The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate

Genre: Historical Fiction

Published April 2020, 388 pages

Added because: found it on GR top historical fiction list

Synopsis: inspired by true events, past & present timelines of 3 women in search of family in post civil war and a modern teacher who finds their stories and a connection to her students; I like that it's in an era not often written about (need a break from WWII books)

Home Before Dark by Riley Sager

Genre: Horror

Published June 2020, 416 pages

Added because: Goodreads top mystery list and several GR friends gave it good reviews

Synopsis: woman who's a historical home restorer returns to her childhood home at father's death not believing its haunted; then she starts experiencing weird things

A Deadly Education #1 by Naomi Novik

Genre: Fantasy, YA

Published Sept 2020, 336 pages

Added because: I enjoyed Spinning Silver and it made GR top 10 fantasy books for 2020

Synopsis: about a school for magically gifted kids where failure means death; no teachers, no rules except surviving, one girl has strong dark powers that can kill the monsters that roam the school, but will it also kill the other students?

**ED: read 10/21 - 3.5 stars

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow

Genre: Fantasy

Published October 2020, 528 pages

Added because: I liked 10,000 Doors of January

Synopsis: in 1893 there's no such thing as witches; they're nothing more than charms and nursery rhymes - until 3 sisters join the suffragists and revive the words and spells.

Zo by Xander Miller

Genre: General Fiction

Published August 2020, 368 pages

Added because: I found it on a "best covers" list on #LitHub and I like a retelling

Synopsis: a debut novel retelling of Romeo and Juliet set on Haiti before and after the 2010 earthquake, evocative of the place

Dear Edward by Ann Napolitano

Genre: General Fiction

Published January 2020, 352 pages

Added because: on the GR top 10 fiction list

Synopsis: a little boy is the lone survivor of a plane crash and the nation is intrigued by him (media!) but he struggles to figure out life without his family

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

Genre: Fantasy

Published September 2020, 245 pages

Added because: on many 'best of' lists

Synopsis: an alternate reality story of a man exploring a house with infinite rooms and thousands of statues and then he discovers signs of another person and a terrible truth begins to unravel

**ED: review here

Hench by Natalie Zina Walschots

Genre: Fantasy

Published September 2020, 416 pages

Added because: from a list of highest reviewed books of 2020

Synopsis: are the caped superheroes that walk the earth good or evil? is it really all about their online marketing? a woman discovers the value of having online power to craft the story and then ends up as the valued henchwoman for one of the worst villains - can she help save the world from here?

When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole

Genre: Thriller

Published September 2020, 351 pages

Added because: recommended by top 2020

Synopsis: when neighbors start leaving an area in Harlem due to gentrification, a woman and her new friend get suspicious and in learning the history of the neighborhood, find more than they expected; institutional racism and results of societal gentrification skillfully wound into the thriller

The Light in Hidden Places by Sharon Cameron

Genre; Historical Fiction

Published March 2020, 400 pages

Added because: Reese's December bookclub pick that sounds up my alley

Synopsis: based on the true story of a 17 year old Polish girl who hid 13 Jewish people in her attic during WWII

Bloodline by Jess Lourey

Genre: Thriller

Publish date January 2021, 348 pages

Added because: Amazon Prime freebie and I'm game for a new thriller

Synopsis: inspired by true events, a journalist moves to a small town with her fiance, ready to enjoy the slower pace, but finds something 'off' about the town; is everyone TOO friendly, is she being watched all the time?

The Last Duel by Eric Jager

Genre: Nonfiction

Published 2004, 256 pages

Added because: starting to fill in 2021 reading challenges

Synopsis: true story of medieval duel over a woman's honor set in France in 1300s.

Migrations by Charlotte McConaghy

Genre: General Fiction

Published August 2020, 256 pages

Added because: recommended by my sister in law, Pat

Synopsis: woman goes to Greenland to track what might be final migration of Arctic terns but also has to deal troubling issues from her past

Fifty Words For Rain by Asha Lemmie

Genre: Historical Fiction

Published September 2020, 464 pages

Added because: recommended by a book blogger I enjoy, #BooklistQueen

Synopsis: debut novel set in Japan about a girl whose mother abandons her to her grandparents care because she was illegitimate; the grandparents confined her to an attic room until she meets her brother and learns more of the world; an epic story spanning decades and continents

16 books is a lot to add in one month.....but, it's end-of-year so I'm sure this month and next month (as I catch up on the 'best of' lists I missed in December) my TBR will explode. I'm just so worried some great book is going to get by me. :) How is your TBR list looking at the end of this year???

Welcome to Bookshelf Journeys.

It's my goal to provide real reviews of the books I read without totally rehashing every plot. I'll never spoil a story by giving away a plot twist! Hopefully you'll find one or two of interest and will discover a new book or author to add to YOUR TBR list.  Take a moment to explore, read a couple reviews, and let me know what you think.


For your convenience, I use #hashtags in the reviews and when you click on one, you'll find more books with that theme. Hopefully you'll find it a helpful way to navigate the site and find books you'll enjoy. I've also recently added tags that will show up at the end of each review that serve the same purpose.

The review ratings are based on a 5 star  (1/2 stars sometimes) system with a 3 being an average read for me. I hope you find that helpful. Knowing, of course, that all opinions are just that - my opinion!  Let me know if you agree or disagree - I'd love to hear from you.

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