Anti-TBR: Popular New Books I’m Not Gonna Read (2020 Edition)

Hello readers!

I like writing these posts because they make me feel in control of my TBR (a lie). These are books that for one reason or another I’ve decided not to add to my TBR, although they are very popular in the bookish community. If you read and loved any of the books below, let me know! I could surely change my mind. I am fairly sure these books all come out on 2020.

I am not including YA books on my list because I have been moving away from YA for the past couple years so a list of popular YA books I won’t read would be redundant.

House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City Book 1) by Sarah J. Maas

I read the entire ACOTAR series, which I definitely don’t regret but also don’t remember fondly either. I think it’s just a matter of having outgrown her books and craving different kinds of stories at this point. I’ve heard that her fans are really enjoying this new book, though!

The Giver of Stars: A Novel by Jojo Moyes

There was some drama a while ago about this book being possibly a rip-off from The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele (which, from what I remember, has been generally considered a coincidence and not plagiarism), but that’s not the reason why I won’t pick this up. I read a couple books by Jojo Moyes and simply did not love them. They were a bit too cheesy for my taste, even in parts where they should’ve been dark or poignant. So while the story sounds interesting, I just don’t feel any desire to pick up a book by this author.

All Adults Here by Emma Straub

Ok, confession: I wasn’t even sure what this book was about until very recently. This sounds like an interesting story about family, mistakes and consequences and I’m curious as to how this could be a “fun, summer read” (which is the blurb I saw for this book). I think this just won’t be for me: I don’t love it when books touch superficially on topics that should be poignant and emotionally devastating. Maybe Emma Straub makes it work (I think Taylor Jenkins Reid does that pretty well, for example), but I just don’t feel very attracted to it.

Rodham: A Novel by Curtis Sittenfeld

Hmmmm… I will not elaborate on this one.

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

Another book I’ve heard amazing things about, and one that seems to be popular also outside of the book blogger community – I was surprised to see it #1 on some bookstores’ lists because it feels to me that this didn’t particularly make waves in the community much more than other books. Funny how one can get a bit lost in their own niche and lose track of what the general public is actually reading! Anyway I am sure this is a very good book and I’ve added it to my TBR a few times, only to remove again later. I just don’t feel very interested on the story.

Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer

I read the original series, and back when New Moon came out, it was the first time I saw a depressive episode in a book that actually resonated with my experience with depression. But I did not like the books that much that I wanted to keep up with the series, especially now so many years later that I don’t have patience to overlook plotholes, annoying characters or unhealthy relationship behaviors.

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno Garcia

I am very sorry about this one, actually! I just didn’t love Gods of Jade and Shadow (it was okay!), and from what I heard this would not be my cup of tea either. I am considering Signal to Noise or Untamed Shore instead (especially this last one! Sharks!!!). Not giving up on the author just yet.

To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini

I still have the last Eragon on my TBR and frankly I remember the writing to be really overdescriptive and the pacing very slow. The synopsis for this also doesn’t sound very compelling or original (although maybe that’s just the synopsis’ fault and the book is in fact incredible and fresh) so I will happily give a pass to 600 pages of a sci-fi I don’t care much for.

Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close by Aminatou Sow

I don’t usually get very caught up in the new non-fiction releases except for a handful and normally every year, but this is making some waves and it caught my interest initially, it being about friendships between women and going through adulthood, but after seeing one or two lukewarm reviews, this seems to be another of those books that are sold as The Handbook of __________ (Adult friendship between women, in this case) and is in fact a case study. It’s giving me How to be a Woman and Three Women vibes and I am not quite excited to learn how two individuals kept their friendship alive when it absolutely will not apply for the kinds of friendships I have, at all.

13 thoughts on “Anti-TBR: Popular New Books I’m Not Gonna Read (2020 Edition)

  1. I really like the concept of this post! I actually haven’t heard about most of these books; the only one I have heard of is House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J Maas. And I have the same feelings about it, though I really enjoyed her previous books. But for some reason I haven’t been inclined to pick this one up.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh my gosh you’re right! I re-read the description and I am also not reading The Most Fun We Ever Had for exactly the same reasons as All Adults Here. I wonder what’s with the trend of “light reading for Summer with adults dealing with complicated family” this year???

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I tried reading Where the Crawdads Sing but I just couldn’t get into it. I felt so guilty for DNFing it because so many people loved it. I have been debating on reading Midnight Sun. I can’t see myself enjoying it as much as I did as a teen. Great post as always 😀



  3. Great post! I wasn’t going to read The Giver of Stars (mainly because I loved The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek), but enough time has passed that I’ll probably give it a try (plus a friend is lending me a copy). I didn’t think I’d be interested in Crawdads, but then my book group picked it and I ended up reading it, and loved it. I also loved Mexican Gothic, but that depends on whether you enjoy creepy horror or not. (I do.)


  4. I love these kinds of posts! The only one I’ve read is Mexican Gothic, which I loved but it’s definitely not for everyone. The genre’s pacing is something people will struggle with and… uh, it’s got massive content warnings for everything under the sun lmao.


  5. Pingback: Month in Review: September 2020 – Books and Bakes

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