Top 5 Wednesday – Books at the Top of My TBR

“Top 5 Wednesday” is a weekly meme currently hosted on Goodreads by Sam of Thoughts on Tomes in which you list your top 5 for the week’s chosen topic.

This week’s topic is: Top of Your TBR.

And…that’s it. No fancy rewording for this one; it’s what it says on the tin. (Though I did limit the list to books that are already published) See, mom, I can simplify things!


Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak


What’s an alternative phrase for “performance anxiety” to describe how you’re anxious about the performance of the other party because it’s been 10 long years of waiting–and you know it’s going to be good because they know exactly how to push your buttons, but what if it isn’t good?–so you keep putting it off and making half-hearted excuses like “Sorry, can’t today. I’m washing my hair” and “The stars aren’t aligned tonight. Not a good time”?

…Asking for a friend.

Right. Come February it’s gonna be you and me, Bridge of Clay. Show me what you got.


The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern


I’ve been announcing to myself every year since 2011 that I’m going to read this for sure. Why break a seven-year tradition?

So, ahem. *taps mic* This year. For sure.


The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden


I’ve been hearing so many incredible things about The Winter of the Witch from several bloggers whose opinions I wholly trust, so I figure now is the best time to continue with the series. It hasn’t been all that wintry here thanks to El Niño but at least I can live vicariously through Arden’s vivid descriptions.


Skyward by Brandon Sanderson


I mean, firstly, it’s a Sanderson book (and I hear it’s great which is utterly unsurprising). Secondly, I have a feeling this might be a good sampler on what the third era Mistborn books might be like. Thirdly, it’s an overdue ARC and I really need to start chopping away at those.


Tower of Living and Dying (Empires of Dust 2) by Anna Smith Spark


Another one that I absolutely wanted to get to in 2018 but couldn’t.

A few tidbits on these books (because I never actually talked about them on this blog):

Despite my local bookstore’s propensity to stick this series in the YA display (because women can’t possibly write grimdark fantasy for adults, amirite?) it’s very much an adult grimdark and probably best I’ve read in the past couple of years, for several notable reasons.

One, it’s sexy, which I never thought I’d say about a grimdark story. Yet it doesn’t weaponize sex to fuel the grimdark aspect (a common complaint I have with these books)–so there’s no rape or attempted rape to be found here.

Two, several of its main characters happen to be queer which is definitely something I don’t see in this subgenre (the traditionally published ones, anyway).

Three, Spark’s prose is the kind that I want to roll around in for days–a gorgeous interplay of poetry, sensuality, and bloody violence.

And if you’re now wondering, “Hell, why is it taking you so long to get to it, then?” don’t worry, I’m right there with you.



What are some books that are at the top of your TBR right now?

35 thoughts on “Top 5 Wednesday – Books at the Top of My TBR

  1. Liam says:

    A very strong list here – a couple that I certainly want to get to for sure. I highly recommend the audiobook version of The Night Circus if you struggle to pick it up and physically read it!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. sjhigbee says:

    Impressive list! I, too, want to dive into The Girl in the Tower this year… I so NEARLY picked this one up from Netgalley a few years back – and am still kicking myself because I didn’t. Happy reading:)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. bookbeachbunny says:

    Reading King of Scars and Winter of the Witch is on top of my TBR!
    Morgenstern has her first book since Night Circus (which I really want to reread) coming out later this year I’m over the moon about so you can always tell yourself your need to give Night Circus a try before that one 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Gerry@TheBookNookUK says:

    I also need to read The Girl in the Tower! I was waiting until The Winter of the Witch was out and I don’t need to wait any more so I best get on that!

    I’ve heard mixed things about Bridge of Clay but I don’t know if that’s because the book *wasn’t* that good or if following The Book Thief is an impossible feat.

    I adore The Night Circus! If you squint closely with critical reading glasses on you realise that its a bit plotless but I found it delightful and fun and loved it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kathy @ Pages Below the Vaulted Sky says:

      I’ve done my best to shut my eyes to anything REMOTELY related to Bridge of Clay and I’ve done pretty well so far, so I have no idea what the overall reception is! But I think following The Book Thief IS an impossible feat, and I’m going to try to go into it with an open mind! It probably helps that I adore Zusak’s writing in general. 😀

      And I’ve read the blurb for Morgensten’s upcoming book and THAT one definitely doesn’t sound plotless! Libraries and pirates and mysterious magical books? YES PLEASE.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Gerry@TheBookNookUK says:

        The Book Thief was his unintended magnum opus I think! Following it is going to be tricky but everything needs to be judged on its own merit!

        I wonder if Erin Morgensten might have the same issue but I cannot wait until her new book comes out because I adored The Night Circus!


  5. waytoofantasy says:

    Love this topic. I am regularly looking at the top of my TBR and readjusting, I think I even made a list to sort by priority at one point lol. The Night Circus was an interesting one, it didn’t quite click all the way for me but it has really lovely prose. Hope you enjoy these when you get to them!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Papertea and Bookflowers says:

    Tower of Living and Dying sounds so amazing? Or well, I suppose the first one in the series does? I’m definitely gonna add this to my TBR. Grimdark fantasy, that’s sexy, has no rape and is queer? Hell yes please!

    Also, omg Night Circus!! I sooo get that. I have the same thing with Lair of Dreams, Nevernight and the second Game of Thrones book. This year. Definitely (hopefully!)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Fanna says:

    Wow, these titles look great! ❤ Bridge of Clay is all around the book world, it's getting such a great response, I hope you enjoy it. The Girl in the Tower is on my TBR too so I'm looking forward to knowing your thoughts on it 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  8. arubunwritten says:

    Really, really looking forward to Bridge of Clay (after The Book Thief broke my heart!) and you will adore Skyward, it’s such a good book (my first Sanderson so I read it on reputation and it definitely lives up to it).


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