Are you a Rogue Reader?

READER BEWARE! I’m all over the place with this post – I was going to delete it because the more I think about things Im not exactly rogue. But I’m going to leave it because I really want to know what your TBR style is:

I often get myself into a bit of a reading conundrum because I go a little rogue when I select books to read. Some can be clunkers. But I never research books or read reviews ahead of time (except for my library job). I’ll never change the way I do things because, first of all, I’m stubborn and second, I think it’s fun to randomly pick books based on my gut reaction to the cover, title or very brief description. (Slight exception: I do have trusted friends and bloggers whose recommendations are ones I follow, but I never research the book beyond that). I guess I like to be surprised! That said, I’m occasionally disappointed, but you know what? You can be just as disappointed after reading a book receives hype.

My Kindle is still loaded with books I quickly picked to read during a recent trip. I’ve read three of them and I’m working my way through the titles. That’s as close to a TBR that I’ll ever use. Normally, I don’t like the feeling of having too many books waiting for me to read. Too stressful and not fun!

Here’s a contradiction: I love to hear and talk about what other people are reading and have read. I guess what I don’t want to do is build a long TBR that’s based on hype. I also guess I’m getting to know myself by writing this post 🤷‍♀️

Everyone is different and I know some readers love to have a bookshelf loaded with unread books. Or a long list of books to read. So today, I’m asking: What’s your TBR strategy? Leave a comment!

Currently loaded Kindle!

Thanks for visiting—come back soon!

39 thoughts on “Are you a Rogue Reader?

  1. I don’t like having a long list of books waiting for me, either. But I will put a book on my TBR if a book blogger said a lot of good things about it even if I’ve never heard of the author or don’t often read that genre.

    Yeah, so basically book bloggers rock.

    Plus I do the whatever-catches-my-eye thing at the library every 2 weeks.:-)

    1. Hi Priscilla – thanks for stopping by. I started the post thinking I was truly rogue, but I learned something about myself as I went along. I definitely pay attention to what others are reading and recommending. Less so the official reviews and hype. Glad to hear you visit your library 😉

  2. Hi, Barb – I’m in three book clubs so many of the books I read are for this. As I also don’t like to have a long TBR List (and I like to get ahead of the line for borrowing library books) I usually read my book club books well in advance. That is one reason why I always leave reviews on Goodreads– to remember how I felt when I finished reading (and to pay it forward to other reviewers) 🙂

    1. Hi Donna – that’s a good system for you. You’re so organized! The whole reason I started a blog was to keep track of what I read. When you aread a lot, it’s hard to remember them all! Thank you for the visit 🙂

  3. Strategy? Was I supposed to have one? (she says, scratching head). Lol. Honestly, first I have to feel drawn to the story. Then, Goodreads has to give it 4 stars or above. I may be missing some good books this way but if enough people give it four stars or more, I know it’s a solid choice.

    1. That’s a good strategy, Kay. I think we all have to find something that works for us individually. I love reading reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, but only after I’ve read the book, but yes, less than 4 stars might be a flag to skip it. Thank you for stopping by to read and comment!

  4. I have a sort of TBR but nothing formal; these are books that I’m considering. I don’t feel pressure to read my list as I definitely won’t get to it really until I retire next year. I also know that some of the books that were initially appealing may lose my attention once I get started. I agree that some books with a lot of hype around them turn out to be duds (in my opinion). I won’t finish a book if it’s not working for me either. Does that make me a rogue? 😉

    1. Hi Lynette! I like having a list and calling it “To Be Considered” instead of “To Be Read” – I could handle that. I just don’t like having a required reading list. I think that you are a bit of a rogue – I have trouble not finishing a book and would love to be able to ditch it if I didn’t like it. Thank you for the visit. Hope you are doing well. 🙂

    1. Haha – yes that is a good tool. It IS nice to look at a list and remember a book! Thank you for reading and commenting, Library of LIfe 😉 Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving!

  5. My TBR list (which could last a lifetime) is filled with books written by friends and my favorite authors. I find comfort knowing that those books are waiting for me on my Kindle.😉

    1. Hi Jill! Yes I get that. It’s kind of like having a full fridge and cupboard on the eve of a storm. For some reason having too many books stresses me out. But it’s nice to have a few options. Thank you for the visit. I hope you had a nice Thanksgiving! 🧡🧡🧡

  6. I have a teetering TBR pile Some paper, some digital. It’s difficult to keep track of which ones were “next” on my list. But over the years I’ve gotten better (or maybe less patient?) at ditching the books that fail to grab my attention 25-30% in. There are just too many other books waiting…

    1. Hi Jo-Anne – yes there are too many books to read them all and it’s good to weed through. I have a hard time not finishing a book even when I’m not interested in it. Maybe I think it’s going to get better as I go along. Not sure! Thank you for reading and commenting. This post was a disorganized jumble of thoughts!!

  7. I have tons and tons of unread books, both physical and digital. Some I’ll never read, but many I will get too eventually. I love having lots of choice and sometimes I decide based on my mood at the time.

    1. Hi Robbie – that makes sense for you. I feel overwhelmed by so much content that I think I prefer to pick as I go. Of course, I also have books on my Kindle and on my bookshelf that I haven’t read, although there aren’t that many. Thanks for stopping by to comment!

  8. I read from recommendations or other bloggers’ observations if I have a copy on my bookshelves – currently “The Grapes of Wrath” is an example. Otherwise I wander along my shelves and pick one out at random – preferably one not read before

    1. Hi Derrick, as I said in my post, I’m all over the place when it comes to picking books. I enjoy the excitement of knowing I can pick whatever I want, so that makes me a bit of a rogue, but I do listen to friends and bloggers who sync with my tastes. I guess I just don’t like being told what to do! Thank you for the visit 🙂

  9. Like you “I never research books or read reviews ahead of time” because I want to find books I like on my own BUT if a friend or blogger mentions a book they like, and I feel like I’m in tune with this person’s vibe, then I’ll take a recommendation. I’m no longer in any book clubs which is rather nice, truth be told. Letting other people tell you what you have to read is too much like being in college.

    1. Hi Ally – all this makes complete sense to me. I used to be in 3 book clubs (hence the name) but now I’m only in 1 for work. I have a stubborn streak in me and don’t like to be told what to read. Thank you for stopping by!

  10. I love audiobooks. If I can find a compelling historical fiction series, I will buy them one at a time and make my way through them. Jodi Taylor’s “The Chronicles of St. Mary’s” and “Time Police” are delightful adventures. James Rollins has an exciting series. Michael Sullivan has a series of fantasy. I purchase kindle versions of books when an author friend like Jacqui Murray comes out with a new book and does not have an audiobook. I will read the kindle and review the book. I don’t like to have too many books started and not finished I get too confused. I purchase paperbacks when I am doing research on a book I am writing and there is no kindle available.

    1. Hi Grace – that sounds like a perfect system for you. I enjoy audiobooks and I definitely go rogue with them, because it’s usually right before I’m headed off for a walk when I decide to download one. I feel overwhelmed by so much new content, however, and not just books. That feeling makes me want to just randomly pick. Thank you for stopping by to read and comment!

  11. The Mystery of Mrs. Christie is excellent. I think you’ll love it. As for how I handle my TBR… on my Kindle, I read almost only ARCs so I go by publication date. If I have two for the same release date, I start with the one that was approved first. As for print books… I try to read the ones released this year first, unless I have a reading challenge I’m doing. Otherwise, I’m very rogue! It could be one that’s been on my shelf for a long time or one I just happened to pick up, or one that someone recommended. Whatever strikes my fancy at the time!

    1. I like it – I think I’m actually a hybrid-rogue! I used to read ARCs from NetGalley but I discovered that I didn’t like being chained to a list of books, even if I was excited about reading them. Everyone’s different, though, and it’s a great way to get to read new books before their pub dates. Thanks for reading and commenting, Davida!

  12. I don’t consider myself standard or rogue. I just like to read. I’m currently reading Colin Falconer, his Epic Adventure series, and really enjoying them.

    1. Hi Tim – I like to think of myself as rogue, but I’m more of a hybrid. ; I do pay attention to what other people are reading and ask what they’ve enjoyed. Thanks for stopping by!

  13. I keep adding books to my Kindle reader, which I also read and review them. Sometimes I acquire books because I read an author’s book for a review. In those cases, I’m a well-behaved reader. Here’s where I go rogue at the library. I often select a book, put it on hold, and then pick it up on the shelf. After I’ve checked out the book, I walk by an attractive display, find a cover that looks alluring, then circle back to checkout. I’ve found many good books this way, but sometimes I find a clunker too.

    1. Hi Marian – ah, it’s so nice to know that you look for books to read from your library display. We are big on displays where I work and keep track of what books move. It’s true, there are clunkers no matter what you do. I like your comment about being a well-behaved reader! Thanks for the visit 🙂

  14. Great topic! I do like to know a little about the books I pick up — but emphasis on little. I don’t want spoilers or to know a whole lot of plot points. Sometimes I’ll think a book sounds right for me, only to discover it’s not appealing for one reason or another once I get into it, but that’s okay. I like the sense of chance I get from picking up a new-to-me book and seeing how it works out! (That said, I do tend to return to favorite authors again and again, so there’s much less risk that way.)

    1. Hi Lisa – I totally get that. I think because I use the library for most of the books I read, there’s zero risk in trying out books I randomly pick. I also return to favorite authors. I’m really all over the place, like my post. I just like the freedom to pick what I want and feel constricted if there’s a TBR or someone telling me what to read. Thanks, Lisa.

  15. Hi Barbara, I read that Lisa Jewel book a couple of years ago. It’s dark, but good. I have another of her books waiting for me at the library. 🙂 As for my TBR list, I have often gone back and deleted some that no longer appealed to me—-and then added more!

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