Down the TBR Hole #12

It’s time to do this once again! LOL can you tell I’m bored and don’t have enough work to keep me busy while at home. This is also me procrastinating writing a review. So…here we go. Let’s go through my massive TBR.

Down the TBR Hole was originally created by Lost in a Story! It’s supposed to help make your TBR list a little more manageable and allow you to get rid of books that you don’t have interest in anymore.

How it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

The Maid and the Queen: The Secret History of Joan of Arc by Nancy Goldstone


Politically astute, ambitious, and beautiful, Yolande of Aragon, queen of Sicily, was one of the most powerful women of the Middle Ages. Caught in the complex dynastic battle of the Hundred Years War, Yolande championed the dauphin’s cause against the forces of England and Burgundy, drawing on her savvy, her statecraft, and her intimate network of spies. But the enemy seemed invincible.

Just as French hopes dimmed, an astonishingly courageous young woman named Joan of Arc arrived from the farthest recesses of the kingdom, claiming she carried a divine message-a message that would change the course of history and ultimately lead to the coronation of Charles VII and the triumph of France.

How did an illiterate peasant girl gain access to the future king of France, earn his trust, and ultimately lead his forces into battle? Was it only the hand of God that moved Joan of Arc-or was it also Yolande of Aragon?

Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who Tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day by Stephan Talty

13435890Agent Garbo tells the astonishing story of a self-made secret agent who matched wits with the best minds of the Third Reich — and won. Juan Pujol was a nobody, a Barcelona poultry farmer determined to oppose the Nazis. Using only his gift for daring falsehoods, Pujol became Germany’s most valued agent — or double agent: it took four tries before the British believed he was really on the Allies’ side.

In the guise of Garbo, Pujol turned in a masterpiece of deception worthy of his big-screen namesake. He created an imaginary million-man army, invented armadas out of thin air, and brought a vast network of fictional subagents whirring to life. His unwitting German handlers believed every word, and banked on Garbo’s lies as their only source of espionage within Great Britain.

For his greatest performance, Pujol had to convince the German High Command that the D-Day invasion of Normandy was a feint and the real attack was aimed at Calais. The Nazis bought it, turning the tide of battle at the crucial moment.

Blueprints for Building Better Girls by Elissa Schappell

8711905._SY475_In these eight darkly funny linked stories, Schappell delves into the lives of an eclectic cast of archetypal female characters—from the high school slut to the good girl, the struggling artist to the college party girl, the wife who yearns for a child to the reluctant mother— to explore the commonly shared but rarely spoken of experiences that build girls into women and women into wives and mothers.

In “Monsters of the Deep,” teenage Heather struggles to balance intimacy with a bad reputation; years later in “I’m Only Going to Tell You This Once,” she must reconcile her memories of the past with her role as the mother of an adolescent son. In “The Joy of Cooking,” a phone conversation between Emily, a recovering anorexic, and her mother explores a complex bond; in “Elephant” we see Emily’s sister, Paige, finally able to voice her ambivalent feelings about motherhood to her new best friend, Charlotte. And in “Are You Comfortable?” we meet a twenty-one-year-old Charlotte cracking under the burden of a dark secret, the effects of which push Bender, a troubled college girl, to the edge in “Out of the Blue into the Black.” Weaving in and out of one another’s lives, whether connected by blood, or friendship, or necessity, these women create deep and lasting impressions.

In revealing all their vulnerabilities and twisting our preconceived notions of who they are, Elissa Schappell, with dazzling wit and poignant prose, has forever altered how we think about the nature of female identity and how it evolves.

With My Body by Nikki Gemmell

13036048A wife, a mother of three, she has everything a woman should want—and yet she has gone numb inside. Locked in a never-ending cycle of chores, errands, and mealtimes, she cannot find a way to live her life with the honesty and passion that once drove her. Even her husband, whom she loves, has never truly touched the core of her being. Only one person has ever come close.

In desperation, she returns to the memory of an old love affair—a transformative relationship with consequences she has never fully resolved.

Revisiting her past, she will begin an exhilarating journey into her sexuality while finally confronting the hidden truths of her heart.

Exquisitely lyrical, bold, and seductive, With My Body is a thought-provoking exploration of family, sex, marriage, and love—the love we give, withhold, and surrender to.

Open City by Teju Cole

8526694Along the streets of Manhattan, a young Nigerian doctor doing his residency wanders aimlessly. The walks meet a need for Julius: they are a release from the tightly regulated mental environment of work, and they give him the opportunity to process his relationships, his recent breakup with his girlfriend, his present, his past.

But it is not only a physical landscape he covers; Julius crisscrosses social territory as well, encountering people from different cultures and classes who will provide insight on his journey—which takes him to Brussels, to the Nigeria of his youth, and into the most unrecognizable facets of his own soul.

The Maid and the Queen: The Secret History of Joan of Arc by Nancy Goldstone

This sounds hella good! I have always been fascinated with Joan of Arc and her story and what she must have went through at the time and this looks like it covers all of that. I’m also a bit of a history lover and while I don’t read nonfiction all that much, this sounds good enough to keep my attention.

Verdict: Keep

Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who Tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day by Stephan Talty

While this sounds very intriguing, my moratorium on WWII books (especially ones with Hitler in them) is still going on, so the likelihood of me reading this anytime soon is very small. I’m also 95% sure I thought this was about Greta Garbo and now that I know it’s not…I’m less interested LOL.

Verdict: Delete Χ

Blueprints for Building Better Girls by Elissa Schappell

I’m sure this is good, but based on the synopsis, it’s just not something I’m interested in right now. I’ve read books like this in the past and while they’re usually worth the read , it’s simply not drawing me.

Verdict: Delete Χ

With My Body by Nikki Gemmell

I know why I added this to my TBR, but I don’t think it fits what I like to read nowadays. I added it over 7 years ago and I wanted to read anything that had to do with affairs. Now, I just want to read enemies-to-lovers LOL.

Verdict: Delete Χ

Open City by Teju Cole

Gonna be honest here: I have no idea why I added this to my TBR. The synopsis doesn’t give much away and it’s been so long since I added it, I cannot remember. Since I haven’t gotten to it yet, it’s probably best that I just take it off the list.

Verdict: Delete Χ

Now I want your opinion! Any books you think I should add back onto my TBR? Or ones I should take off? Let me know!

If you like my bookish content/blog, please think about supporting me by donating to my Ko-fi! ♥♥

6 thoughts on “Down the TBR Hole #12

  1. I love your reasons for why you keep or delete these from your TBR list! Sometimes when I go on a Netgalley request binge, I request all kinds of things that catch my attention. By the time I work my way through my TBR list (based on the books’ publication dates & blog tours), I have forgotten WHY I requested the book at all!

    Liked by 1 person

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