Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Novellas and Short Stories

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature by That Artsy Girl. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

This week’s theme is favorite novellas and short stories. As I’ve written about this before, I was particularly excited for this week’s theme. While I am reigniting my appreciation for longer works (dutifully working through the Russian novels I’ve avoided – and loving it), I have a special place in my heart for novellas and short stories.

These crisp, clean works require skillful prose and  laser-point focus in order to be successful. The five novellas and five short stories I have listed today all are brilliantly written, compulsive examples of the diversity of short fiction.



Top Ten Tuesday: Red, White and Blue

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature by That Artsy Girl. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

This week’s theme is a patriotic Red, White and Blue, featuring books with covers in these colors. And because I love making things harder for myself, I added an additional level — all these are fairy tale retellings! (Great beach reads and they usually have gorgeous covers).

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Top Ten Tuesday: Forever Rereading

It has actually been forever since I’ve done a Top Ten Tuesday — I didn’t even know that the host had switched! (You go That Artsy Reader Girl!)

I thought it would be fun to get back into this, because I always enjoyed it before my life turned upside-down with craziness for a while! (Sadly this upside-down has less to do with Eggos and Demogorgons and more to do with coffee and new jobs).

This week finds us all choosing the top ten books we could re-read forever. This is fun…mostly because I haven’t reread a book in a while (because I have too many books to read for the first time! Gah!).

So, instead…I’m going to make a list of books I would like to reread in the near (ish) future.

Here goes!


Top Ten Tuesday: Summer Time Reading

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

This week’s theme is a Summer Reads Freebie! I was particularly excited for this theme because I love reading in the Summer — there is something scrumptiously lazy about Summer reading.

Additionally, I’ve been working on compiling my Summer Playlist, so I thought for this Top Ten Tuesday I’d pair my favorite Summer reads with some of my favorite summer songs!


Here goes! 🙂

The Monstrumologist (The Monstrumologist, #1)95785177455975







The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancy — Heathens by twenty one pilots

The Girl Is Murder by Kathryn Miller — Booty Swing by Parov Stelar

The Half-Life of Planets by Emily Franklin and Brendan Halpin — Left Hand Free by alt-J

To A God Unknown by John Steinbeck — Monday by Matt Corby

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer — Little Fly by Esperanza Spalding

I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak — Summer Dress by July Talk

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut — Drop the Game by Flume & Chet Faker

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald — Diet Mountain Dew by Lana Del Rey

Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta — Wake Me Up by Avicii

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater — From Eden by Hozier


Top Ten Tuesday: Books on my Spring TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

It has been a while since I’ve had the time (and dedication) to actually be up to date on my reading list. So, I’m excited to say that I actually have a lot of books I am looking forward to read this coming Spring.

Ten Books I Can’t Wait to Read This Springten books looking forward (2)


Top Ten Tuesday: Valentine’s Day Edition

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday – hosted by The Broke and the Bookish – is all about romance! Obviously….with Valentine’s Day this was a must. Everyone is thinking about love and romance (or lack thereof).

Now, everyone knows a couple that isn’t going to last. Maybe one, the other, or both individuals involved are immature; or maybe the circumstances aren’t right; or maybe they just aren’t well suited for each other; or maybe their family and friends are against the relationship….or countless other reasons. It’s just clear that the romance is doomed to fail.

There are a lot of these romances in literature too….so here are my top ten “doomed to fail” literary romances.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books that Pair Well With Vivaldi

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

This week’s topic was a freebie, so I decided to have some fun with it! As you all know by now, I love books and music, so what could be better than to putting them together?

So without further ado — ten books that pair well with Vivaldi ( ♡) (Click the cover to open the youtube link with the Vivaldi piece!)

Seraphina (Seraphina, #1)The Thief (The Queen's Thief, #1)Revolution


Song of the SparrowA Company of SwansA Great and Terrible Beauty (Gemma Doyle, #1)Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely, #1)


Shiver (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #1)The Night CircusA Man for All Seasons



Top Ten Tuesday: Book Gift Guide for Parents of a Fired Up College Student

Another week, another Top Ten Tuesday!  This is a weekly feature from The Broke and the Bookish which challenges bloggers to create lists on the weekly topic. In anticipation of Christmas this week’s topic was: Holiday Gift Guide freebie (ten books to buy the YA lover in your life, 10 books to buy for your dad, etc.).

I chose to do a  book gift guide for parents with college students…or college students to get for themselves because these books are all fantastic and well worth your time (whether you are a wannabe philosopher or not 😉 ).



Top Ten Tuesday: All Time Favorite Bildungsroman Novels

Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly feature by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week has a new theme and you can participate however often you choose!

Confession: I’m not a huge fan of the Bildungsroman (or for those who aren’t pretentious lit. nerds, coming-of-age novels). It is not that I don’t like books where characters transition from childhood to adulthood, I simply prefer that they be in the context of a wider narrative, rather than the primary focus of the novel.

I find this especially true in modern day coming-of-age novels. I find John Green or Judy Blume-esque cliched and unrelatable in many ways. But that’s a discussion for another time.

Despite my general lack of interest in this genre, there are a number of bildungsromans that I have absolutely loved. The characters are relatable and engaging, the plot unique, and the writing style compelling. Overall, each of these novels stand out not only in their genre, but also as great literary works in their own right.

  1. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë – This is a no-brainer. One of the most famous novels in this genre, it is rightly praised. It not only explores Jane’s personal development, but also serves as an early social criticism of class, religion, and sexuality.
  2. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – Another female author and another 19th century novel, but it’s a great one. This one stood out to me because it is telling the coming-of-age story of a monster, shunned by his creator. Ultimately, the bildungsroman is about the educational journey and search for self that the individual goes through as s/he grows up. So, what happens when that individual is a monster with no place in society? This is one of the questions that Shelley explores in this great novel.
  3. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien – Jumping to the 20th century for a bit now. This novel is fantastic on so many levels, but also for it’s great take on the bildungsroman. Bilbo is thrust into a quest and through his travels grows into the hero that Gandalf saw from the beginning. Though it is a cliche of fantasy now, this is where it began (and let’s be honest, it’s one of the best examples of this trope out there. Tolkien is a masterful story teller).
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – The list wouldn’t be complete without this American classic. Required reading in every high school English class, it’s a masterful exploration of what it means to grow up in both a class and race divided society as well as revealing the destruction of innocence in such a world. As much as we learn about Scout growing up, she is primarily outwardly focused, she comes of age by seeing the world around her. (And as much controversy as Go Set A Watchman has received…it tells a similar story – though perhaps with Scout a bit more inwardly focused).
  5. The Prelude by William Wordsworth – If I am completely honest, I have a pretty rocky relationship with this work of epic poetry. It was required reading for my English Romantics class and we had to read the whole thing (which is quite long) very quickly which definitely influenced my appreciation of the work. However, as I worked on my paper on it I found my appreciation and enjoyment of the work growing. It’s a masterful exploration of artistic coming-of-age. (apparently that’s technically called Künstlerroman). And it is one of the few in the genre that I really felt like I connected with what he was writing: “This is my lot; for either still I find / Some imperfection in the chosen theme, / Or see of absolute accomplishment / Much wanting — so much wanting — in myself / That I recoil and droop, and seek repose / in indolence from vain perplexity, / Unprofitably travelling towards the grave, / Like a false steward who hath much received / And renders nothing back .”*
  6. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston – Fascinating book. Well written and demanding. It’s the sort of work that requires a response from the reader, like To Kill a Mockingbird its focus is largely outward, as much a societal critique as a coming-of-age novel.
  7. The Quarry Wood by Nan Shepherd – This one is another more difficult read, but well worth the time. This one, like Hurston’s work, is focused largely on feminist issues and gender roles. Martha wants independence and freedom, but is tied down by a society where she is called to be dependent on a man. It also confronts the problem of educated women who are trapped by expectations of marriage and homemaking.
  8. The House with the Green Shutters by George Douglass Brown – Another one I initially disliked but found that the more I studied it the more I appreciated it. This one is more of an anti-bildungsroman. It shows the failure of its protagonist to become a man.
  9. The Giver by Lois Lowry – This middle grade book really packs a punch. Jonah’s tale shows a boy who comes of age within his society…and then beyond.
  10. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde – What happens when you refuse to grow up? Allow yourself to remain on the cusp of adulthood indefinitely? That’s what Wilde asks in this fascinating exploration into the darker side of youthfulness.

*William Wordsworth, The Prelude 1805 Book I lines 262-269