~ Goodreads TBR Cleanup #17 ~

To aid my efforts to clean up my endless TBR, I decided to go with the Goodreads TBR Cleanup (created by @ Mega Bunny Reads). This challenge can be done bi-weekly or weekly (or any other timeframe that suits you). If you’re interest in the other Down the TBR Hole meme, then you can check it out following the links. The meme was created by Lia @ Lost in a Story — she has a new blog though called Sunflowers and Wonder!

How It Works:

  • Go to your Goodreads want-to-read shelf.
  • Ask Siri (or any other generator) to pick a number between 1 and however many books are on the list.
  • Go to that book and look at it and the 4 after it, for a total of 5.
  • Read the synopses of the books.
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

For the number selection, I used an online random number generator.


1. Three Little Truths

by Eithne Shortall
[Published October 13th 2020]

Big Little Lies meets One Plus One in this story of three women neighbors looking for a fresh start, and the love affairs, rivalries, and scandals found on the other side of the white picket fence.

One happy street. Three pretty houses. So many lies.

Martha used to be a force of nature: calm, collected, and in charge. But since moving her husband and two daughters to Dublin under sudden and mysterious circumstances, she can’t seem to find her footing. Robin was the “it” girl in school, destined for success. Now she’s back at her parents’ with her four-year-old son, vowing that her ne’er-do-well ex is out of the picture for good. Edie has everything she could want, apart from a baby, and the acceptance of her new neighbors. She longs to be one of the girls, and to figure out why her perfect husband seems to be avoiding their perfect future. Three women looking for a fresh start on idyllic Pine Road. Their friendship will change their lives, and reveal secrets they never imagined.


The idea of a lot of drama occurring on a seemingly happy street reminds me of Desperate Housewives and the novel intrigues me. I am on the fence about keeping this, but I do not believe I would get around to it any time soon. I think this might be a great novel to come back to in the future, but most likely it will be years down the road.

2. The Forgotten Sister

by Nicola Cornick
[Published November 10th 2020]

In the tradition of the spellbinding historical novels of Philippa Gregory and Kate Morton comes a stunning story based on a real-life Tudor mystery, and of a curse that echoes through the centuries and shapes two women’s destinies…

1560: Amy Robsart is trapped in a loveless marriage to Robert Dudley, a member of the court of Queen Elizabeth I. Surrounded by enemies and with nowhere left to turn, Amy hatches a desperate scheme to escape—one with devastating consequences that will echo through the centuries…

Present Day: When Lizzie Kingdom is forced to withdraw from the public eye in a blaze of scandal, it seems her life is over. But she’s about to encounter a young man, Johnny Robsart, whose fate will interlace with hers in the most unexpected of ways. For Johnny is certain that Lizzie is linked to a terrible secret dating back to Tudor times. If Lizzie is brave enough to go in search of the truth, then what she discovers will change the course of their lives forever.


Duel-timeline stories can be hit or miss, as they depend on how the two stories weave together. From the synopsis, it sounds like they will directly intertwine, but other stories have promised the same and did not deliver. I think for that reason, I will toss this book for now as I take a small break from these types of stories.

3. His Bride for the Taking

by Tessa Dare
[Published October 1st 2019]

*This novella was originally published in Rogues Rush In: a Regency Duet (2018), by Tessa Dare and Christi Caldwell

It’s the first rule of friendship among gentlemen: Don’t even think about touching your best friend’s sister.

Sebastian, Lord Byrne, has never been one for rules. He’s thought about touching Mary Clayton—a lot—and struggled to resist temptation. But when Mary’s bridegroom leaves her waiting the altar, only Sebastian can save her from ruin. By marrying her himself.

In eleven years, he’s never laid a finger on his best friend’s sister. Now he’s going to take her with both hands. To have, to hold…and to love.


Novellas are another type of story that can be very hit or miss. Usually, there just is not enough time to get a well-rounded story since the page length is not there. I love Regency romances, but I think I will toss this novella in favor of potential other reads that are full-length.

4. Playing James (Colshannon #1)

by Sarah Mason
[Published June 1st 2004]

Rules? What rules?

Plucky beat reporter Holly Colshannon has a flair for the dramatic, a nose for trouble, and the remarkable ability to smile through any indignity—though her latest assignment is about to test her mettle. Newly “promoted” to crime reporter for the Bristol Gazette, she must shadow the unsmiling (though undeniably delicious) Detective James Sabine through his action-packed days, and then capture all the danger and thrills of a cop’s life in a daily column for the rag.

Well, on the bright side, she gets her own byline. On the down side, delectable James is hardly overjoyed to have her around. But soon her columns are a hit with readers who can’t get enough of her personal adventures riding shotgun with the sexy crime stopper.

Who ever expected law and order to be so romantic? Certainly Holly’s rugby-playing boyfriend and James’s super-gorgeous fiancée are enough to keep any sparks of electricity in check? In the end, though, love always evens the score. . . .


While this sounds like it will be a fun series, I do not think I could dedicate the time to reading a new one. I have a lot of other series that I need to get to first plus thousands of standalones. Although the synopsis is interesting, something about it is not pulling me in enough to start it, so, for now, this novel is a toss.

5. The Perfect Stranger (The Perfect Stranger #1)

by Charlotte Byrd
[Published August 27th 2020]

When he burst into my life, he set everything on fire. He is a multi-millionaire, escaped inmate serving life in prison for a double murder he didn’t commit. He was once my only friend and my first crush. He doesn’t ask for help and I don’t offer. His hair falls into his face and a strand brushes along his chiseled jaw. His vulnerability is disarming. We both know that he shouldn’t be here, but when I stare into his piercing, intense eyes, I can’t look away. I want to tell him to leave, but then he leans over and runs his finger over my lower lip. When our mouths touch, I know that I won’t be able to stop. What happens when one night isn’t enough?


This is another novel that seems like an excellent read and it just seems to be a timing issue that puts me on the fence. I like the addition of the thriller element plus a mix of romance as I do not get around to reading those novels very often. One day down the road I’ll try and circle back, but, for now, this is a toss.

Clean-up number 17 is now complete! Although some of these novels still greatly interest me, some of them are tossed either due to type or general timing issues. The more I go through my TBR, the more I remember a lot of books, such as these, that I would read given more time. Unfortunately, I have a lot of other novels to keep me busy and there is only so fast I can get through my backlog while continuing to read newer novels. It’s a hard balance that almost every reader goes through, so, at least I can take comfort in the fact that I’m most likely not alone in this struggle. Happy Clean-ups to those that are doing these every week and good luck to those who are giving it a shot!

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