Remember that time I asked about books I didn’t DNF but maaaybe was going to? Well, I told you there’d be a second part! It’s time for books sitting on my shelf for a long, long time; books that I don’t know if I will ever really read. And if you are anything like me, you understand the struggle of too many books, not enough shelves. 

We’re going to chat about these books. And you can vote on whether I should give them a shot, or give them a new home.

Book #1: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

How Long it’s been Shelfside: About 8 months

Why I Have all the Doubts: So at first, everyone loved Anna. And the rest of the gang. But then as I delved deeper into the blogosphere some of you really hated it. And apparently there is some cheating, which made some of you hate it, and I’ll be honest, I don’t care about that. What I do care about is that I have read that it is wayyy too fluffy. And that the characters can be assholes. That’s a bad combination. 


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Book #2: Atlantia by Ally Condie

How Long it’s been Shelfside: I pre-ordered this bad boy back in 2014 or some nonsense.

Why I have all the doubts: Did anyone like this? No, I am being serious! I loved everything about the sound of it, and the cover is beyond gorge, but umm I have not heard a single positive review? So if you can give me one, super! Or even if you just say “read it because pretty cover”, I can live with that too.

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Book #3: Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld

How Long it’s been Shelfside: No real idea. I won it soon after it came out. So like, 2014?

Why I Have all the Doubts: I’ve had this one sitting on my shelf for ages. Here’s the thing: It takes up a shit ton of shelf space. Not only is it numerous in pages (599 of them, to be exact), but it’s just heavy in general. It weighs the most of any book I own, and it isn’t longest (by a long shot). Oh, and a lot of people said it was kind of boring, so there’s that.

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Book #4: Lailah by Nikki Kelly

How Long it’s Been Shelfside: Also Fall of 2014. I think there was a book curse around that time? I also won it. Weird.

Why I Have All the Doubts: My Goodreads friends’ ratings look like this: 5, 1, 5, 2, 4, DNF… you get the idea. Some people loved it. And some people hope it dies a thousand fiery deaths. So I need to know if it’s worth my time, because it is a series and all… 

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Book #5: The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen 

How Long it’s been Shelfside: Probably 2014.  Just kidding, apparently it was May of 2015.

Why I Have all the doubts: I have heard a lot of mixed things about this one. Some say fabulous, some say slow and draggy. Normally, that wouldn’t deter me. But the 632 Kindle pages of “maybe”? That is scary business. Also, did you see the cover change? The beautiful black and gold cover became… whatever the hell this is:

22864842My eyes weep. I need to buy the pretty one if I do read it. Because I also have pretty Invasion of the Tearling, sooo…

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Book #6: The Selection by Kiera Cass

How Long it’s been Shelfside: I bought the first three books in May 2014. Why would I buy them all? Oh, Kindle sale.

Why I Have all the doubts: Because The Heir‘s actual existence kind of spoils the whole series, right? Literally, first sentence of the synopsis, people. Plus, everyone hated that. So is it worth five books and 352 novellas? I don’t know, this is where you come in. 

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Do you hang on to all the books? Even ones you are not sure you even still want to read? I just did the biggest purge/giveaway I have ever done, and now that I have, I want MORE space. 

Don’t worry, it’s just so I can obtain newer, shinier books 😉 

Posted January 27, 2016 by Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight in Discussion / 52 Comments

52 responses to “Do These Deserve Precious Shelf Space?

  1. I’ve only read Anna & The French Kiss and The Selection so I’m voting for those two only. Anyways, I think you should give Anna a try? It’s a really sweet story. It IS fluffy, but not the kind of fluffy that’s annoying if you get what I mean?
    As far The Selection, I liked the book when I first read it, but ugh, just kick it to the curb because the series seems never ending with the author popping books here and there like she’s trying to milk money out of readers.

  2. I’ve only read Anna & The French Kiss and The Selection. Anna & The French Kiss is honestly not my favorite book. I would have not started the series, if I knew I would dislike it that much.
    As for The Selection, a lot of people don’t like it and I can see why, but I really enjoyed reading it.

  3. Oh I definitely hang on to ALL THE BOOK XD I’m a total mood reader so I never know when I’ll suddenly feel like reading something again. And since most of my books are on my kindle anyway, I don’t really need to worry about running out of space (I mean I will have to eventually but for now I can just keep buying more ebooks! ;). By the way, I voted for Anna and the French Kiss and Afterworlds! Anna and the French Kiss is a really cute and fluffy read but it’s best if you’re in the mood for that type of thing (and yes it is a bit cliché but I thought the author pulled it off well). I thought Afterworlds was really cool and to me, it didn’t drag at all but I think it just depends on the reader, and what holds their attention.

  4. Sam

    I am a fan of the selection, so I vote yes! I also have quite a few of these on my Kindle/Shelf, but I heard good things about them (aside from Atlantia).

  5. The only one of those that I have read was Selection. It was an okay series, but not that great. I only finished the series because I hate leaving things unfinished. And no, it is not worth five books and three novellas. I started Anna and the French Kiss, but I stopped after a bit. I never really called it a DNF because I thought I would go back to it. But nah. The characters just irked me and it was way too fluffy for my taste. I was not impressed with the writing style either.

  6. Okay… so out of these, I’ve only read Anna and the French Kiss (and the rest of the trilogy), The Queen of the Tearling, and The Selection. I enjoyed all three books.

    Yes, Anna is super fluffy, but it’s also really adorable. It really brightened my spirits.

    The Queen of the Tearling is a little dry, but it has such a fascinating plot. I’m not one for fantasy, especially adult high fantasy, but I really enjoyed it. Now I just have to read the second book! It’s been on my shelf since July.

    The Selection was definitely not my favorite book in that series just because I felt like one character was a little too anti-feminist for me, but I enjoyed the rest of the books. And the good news… you don’t have to read the novellas. They are more like bonus features.

  7. The only one I’ve tried is The Selection, and I ended up DNF’ing it, because I thought the plot was sooo cliche and immature :p

  8. I definitely hang on to books until I’ve at least attempted to read them. If I DNF or it’s a one star then I will get rid.

    The only one from your list I’ve read is The Selection, it’s a fluffy and quick read (I read it in less than a day) so I’d definitely hang on to it. I do have The Queen of The Tearling too, but I’ve yet to get around to that one.

  9. I love this post haha – it’s really creative!! 😀 Although I voted and put in my thoughts, ultimately, it’s up to you and your gut feeling. Being a book hoarder I find it so difficult to throw books out/give them away – I just find new areas to put all my books xD Good luck with your decisions – some of them sound like they’d be hard to make!

  10. Tough choices! I often hang on to books because I just can’t get rid of them. I totally agree with the existence of The Heir, I haven’t read the synopsis but I do wish she’d named it something and doesn’t seem to give certain things away (although I am just assuming it gives things away). Atlantia was a HUGE disappointment for me. Sigh.

  11. I have to admit I was going to read both Atlantia and Queen of the Tearling but based on reviews I’m kinda holding off. Like you I haven’t seen much positive about Atlantia, and Tearling I’ve seen both good and bad, but the slow part has me hesitating. So yeah… Atlantia does have a good cover tho. 🙂

  12. I haven’t tried getting rid of my old books before, because I just can’t let them go, no matter how terrible they are! But since they’ve been taking up so much space on my shelves, I do think I need to give some of them away to people who want them soon… Hopefully I can gather up my courage to do so!

    I’ve only read Anna And The French Kiss and The Selection on your list. I have to say, AatFK really is fluffy. However, it’s a book for those who want to chill and read a light contemporary romance for once. I loved the book, even though Anna and Étienne (I would rather call him by his first name, sorry Anna! :p) frustrated me at times their decisions, the whole book was a good read for me in the end. I’d suggest you not to have such high standards for it, though!

    As for The Selection, I honestly put it on my DNF list mainly because of how cringe-worthy it was for me. It was less show and more tell, and really, “America Singer”? Sigh. I really tried finishing the first book, but I couldn’t even get past the first five chapters. 🙁 It just wasn’t for me.

  13. Ok, so you probably already know how much I LOVVVVVE Anna, and the rest of the series, for that matter. Yes, its fluff level is pretty high, but it’s also super cute and makes me super happy. So yeah, there’s that. 🙂

    As for The Selection series… I was binging it and in the middle of the third book when The Heir’s title and synopsis was revealed. yeah, I was pretty livid. Who spoils an ENTIRE series with the title of a book that wasn’t even supposed to exist?! It was supposed to be a trilogy, and that’s why I waited to binge it until they were all released. Not cool. Not cool at all. I still really enjoyed it, but that sucks that it’s kinda spoiled now for everyone who hasn’t read it.

    That’s all I’ve read out of these. Love this feature, girlie! 🙂

  14. Oh Anna, I’ll always have fond memories of that book. 😉

    If you don’t care about cheating, I think it’ll be fine. I don’t think it’s too fluffy, but there’s a TON of (unnecessary) drama. A ridiculous amount. So that could bother you a lot.

    It is a sort of Contemporary classic, it’s well written, I like seeing how Paris was portrayed, the main character, Anna, felt real, but blah, a lot of it did not work for me. Mostly the cheating and the drama and the characters that can be assholes. And some of the characters could have used more work, development wise. Haha. So many assholes, it’s not good when the main character(s) make you want to STAB YOUR EYES OUT. Ahem…

    That will be the only book I’ll comment on since I haven’t read any of the others. Lol.

    I don’t hang on to ‘all’ the books, I mean, most of the books, yeah, but I don’t want to get rid of books (generally) that I haven’t read because what if I like it? I can’t throw them out, ha. I do want to eventually do a book purge but…not this soon, ha.

  15. This is a great post! I’ve only read two of those, but then two of the others are on my TBR shelf still. I voted for Anna and The Selection. I’ve only read Anna in that series, although I kind of want to read Isla because I liked that character in Anna’s book. I loved the Selection, and yes, you know what will end up happening, but it’s still worth it. I have the Afterworlds ARC sitting on my TBR shelf. I loved the Uglies series, and so want to read it, but it’s so big that it makes me pause before picking it up to start. And then I want to read Atlantia, I liked the Matched series. Well, scratch that, I liked Matched, and was disappointed by the rest of that series. So I think that is sitting on my TBR shelf as well. I have a lot of trouble giving up things that I might want to read some day!

  16. I so understand! I just purged my shelves last year and there’s all of these books left that I’m not sure I’m ever going to read! The only one of these I’ve read is Afterwords and yeah I voted to get rid of it. It was just okay and you should be spending your time reading good. Good luck with your cleaning!

  17. I only have read The Selection of these books and while yes it’s obvious how it wil end and The Heir kinda spoils it, I did really enjoy The Selection. With all the hype I was a bit hesistant, but I was pleasantly surprised. The main character is a very down to earth girl and I really enjoyed the first book. I did hear the love triangle comes into play more in the next books though. I hope you give it a chance. I do hang on to most books, I am a hoarding and have a hard time doing my books away.

  18. I’d say to give Anna a chance. It’s quite fluffy and the push and pull between our couple is quite frustrating but it’s a sweet story and their interactions in the companion novels are equally as sweet.
    I’ve been on the fence with Queen of the Tearling as well. The length is definitely intimidating, especially with how intense and heavy I’m told this book is. It’s one book that I have to be in the right mood for but even then the chances are I would have to take a break from it. So undecided with Tearling. Not that that helps much haha.

  19. When I started the Selection series, I thought about spending money on the physical books, But in the end I decided against it. It’s not a series I’d be interested in re-reading. Also, that MC half the time I wanted to stuff her in a barrel.

  20. The only one I’ve read is Anna and the French Kiss and I really loved it. I voted to give it a shot! Even if you never read the other two, I think it’s worth reading. I normally wouldn’t have read it until I saw reviews online and then I was curious and ended up loving it – so did my sister!

    I do try and go through my books when I can and get rid of things I’ve had FOREVER and doubt I’ll read. It can be difficult, but it’s good to free up space.


  21. I’ve been thinking about the exact same thing lately and am considering a bookshelf clean-out/unhaul. There are so many books that I bought a year, two years (or more) ago and now I wonder if I still even have any interest. I’m definitely hanging on to the Anna and the French Kiss trilogy and the Selection series. I *know* I’ll get to them eventually and I do still want to read them. But the Tempest trilogy by Julie Cross? Or the Precious Stone trilogy by Kerstin Gier? Yeah, those and some others are up in the air. But then I wonder, am I going to get rid of those just so I can replace them with other books that I’m not going to read? Gah! #thestruggleisreal

  22. I think you should give Anna a go! I thought it was adorable. I liked The Selection too, though America could get on my nerves a bit. I liked Lailah ok (I gave it 3 stars), but had some issues with it. I also have Queen of the Tearling. I want to give it a try, but we’ll see if I ever find time.

  23. I have a harder time getting rid of books that I own and haven’t read than those I have (unless I disliked it–then I’m okay). There’s so much promise to the books I have yet to read, and there’s always the fact that I bought the book for a reason (assuming it wasn’t an unwelcome gift). I don’t like to let go of that potential, personally, unless I’m 90 percent certain I won’t read it or won’t enjoy it if I do.

  24. Ooh, I so love how you do posts like this. XD okay, but seriously…you didn’t like Red Rising right? not that I think Queen of the Tearling is similar (it’s not) but I just have a feeling you wouldn’t really like it. I like high epic fantasy but I didn’t like it because it was super dry. D: I’m like a minority here and I WILL WATCH THE MOVIE BECAUSE EMMA WATSON HECK YES. Whenever that comes out. Who can know all these things.

    Skiiiip Atlantia. XD Omg, you might as well eat a seashell and get the same amount of interesting results.

    And while I don’t like Anna so much now…I did like it a lot when I read it!! I think it’s cute and the dialogue is fun. But it has a lot of baggage?!? So it’s almost a bit TOO angsty. SO IDEK. IF YOU LIKE AGNSTY GO FOR IT. And there’s France, so *whispers* Shannon there is French food, omg so much French food. That is the reason I’ll still stand by it forever. :’)

  25. I actually enjoyed Afterworlds far more than I’d expected to. I’m not a book hoarder though–too many people in too small of a space, and I can always get things at the library one way or another.

  26. I’m this weird opposite version of a pack rat/hoarder o.O If it has no use IT MUST GO! I am not attached. I’m kind of heartless when it comes to getting rid of things xD Anyways, I actually really enjoyed Anna and The French Kiss. It was very cutesy, but I thought Anna was very funny (i burst out laughing a lot). There is cheating and some assholes exist too tho :/ I can’t really justify the cheating. Ever. I mean the person should have leveled up and just broken up with the significant other a;sdlkjf so THAT’S frustrating. But otherwise it’s very cute love story.

  27. I’ve read Anna and The French Kiss and really enjoyed it! And also The Selection. But I don’t read the other 2 books about Eadlyn (or whatever her name is), I just don’t feel any motivation to read it. But the original trilogy is pretty enjoyable (I’m not saying it’s amazing or deserve 500 stars, but it was enjoyable). And finally, I haven’t read Atlantia, but I’ve read Matched (by the same author) and it was okay. But it was so average, and the story is a bit dry that I didn’t continue the series, and haven’t picked up anything by her again ever since 😀

  28. holdenj

    You have put into words something I struggle with as well. I liked Anna and all of the subsequent books, but they are fluff–as long as you’re prepared for that! I forgot about Atlantia, but wound up being disappointed by her last trilogy.

  29. The one downside to eBooks is the changing covers. I don’t know if this happens with Kindle books, but with Nook books I’ve had the covers update after connecting to the web. So my beautiful blue Outlander cover with the gold thistle is now the TV promo cover with Sam and Catriona. I adore them, but I’ve been a fan of Outlander for years so I prefer the covers that match my physical copies.

    I was actually going through my library’s Overdrive audiobooks and they have The Queen of Tearling. I’ve added it to my wish list as there was a waiting list and I need a new book to listen to immediately.

  30. ♥ this feature! Such a fun idea and I should seriously do this for some books that I have had forever and still haven’t read! The one I would say is worth it is Anna and the French Kiss — I loved that one but maybe it’s just me!

  31. PUNS! Yay! I love puns! First of all, I have been known to keep ALL THE BOOKs, even if I’m pretty sure I’ll never read them. I just organized my TBR shelf and tried to get rid of some but…I couldn’t. It’s a real problem!

    I say nay to The Selection. I read the first when it first came out and I did enjoy it but I lost interest halfway through the second and, I mean, it’s like 80% romance from what I remember and you already know how it ends so why? As for Afterworlds, I’m actually in the middle of reading it right now and it’s…good? I mean, I don’t find it especially boring but it is so long and not amazing. I think it’s worth the read though and it’s pretty so I said yes to that one. Just my opinion. Anna is really fluffy and has some questionable characters but, I mean, it’s perfect when you want something fluffy!

    Okay, I’ve rambled enough. LOVE THIS FEATURE. =)

  32. I love this feature and post! Here’s my input — I loved The Queen of the Tearling (and its sequel!). I do not like the cover change though. I haven’t read any of the Perkins books so I can’t help there. 😀 I do not like The Selection series. HATED Lailah (barf, sickening love triangle, barf some more). Atlantia was kind of boring for me! I know zilch about the Scott W book. So. Hopefully someone (or some people) have helped you out! Happy deciding, Shannon. 😀

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  33. The only one I’ve read of these is Anna, which I thought was adorable (I know I know, the CHEATING.) So, okay, I was kinda able to look past it? The book is just so fluffy. But I do wish a couple of things had been handled differently. Isla is my favorite from that series!

  34. First of all – SHELFSIDE is THE GREATEST WORD EVER and needs to be admitted into the Oxford Dictionary ASAP! I mean, seriously! I can’t stop grinning at it. But anyway. Ahem. Moving on.

    Problem or no-problem, Anna is the height of fluff. But Anna is also terrifically cute. So it’s up to you to decide where you stand on the fluff-scale right now. I was really in the mood for it back when I read it, and I enjoyed it. The added bonus is that Lola and Isla aren’t the same SERIES, y’know, just… kind of spinoffs? So you haven’t committed to anything if you commit to just Anna.

    Personally, I wish I would have RUN FAR, FAR AWAY from Atlantia. And also The Selection. I can’t even comment on Atlantia anymore, it was such a blur of NOPE for me. But as far as The Selection – again, that depends on your fluff-tolerance. The Selection is veeeeeeery fluffy and angsty romance (ALL THE TRIANGLES!) masquerading as dystopia. There’s virtually no worldbuilding and no proper dystopian aspects. It’s A ROMANCE STORY. It’s also very much a one-book-story stretched over three books (and now two more have been added, and Jesus). For me personally, the quality of writing also kept DROPPING rather dramatically from installment to installment. While #1 was tolerable fluff, by the time I got to #4, I was so, so regretting that decision.

    Queen of the Tearling and Afterworlds are still Shelfside (:D) for me, too, and this was some valuable insight! I LOVE that we can see how others voted on the ones we haven’t read! And I LOVED voting, too! This is fun, I want to do it all the time. <3 And I hope we've all managed to help some.

  35. I’ve only read ANNA & The Selection from here. Definitely hoping you keep ANNA. Simply for your review because I’ve been obviously anticipating that! 😀 Plus, Anna’s friends are super cool. I think you could toss The Selection. Honestly, there’s nothing good about it, which I hate to say. It’s a medieval version of The Bachelor, but full of Mary Sues. A definite pass. The only good thing from the series is the covers. They’re so pretty and magical and oohhh fluffy dresses. I’d been dying to read The Siren, though, because mermaids. 😀

  36. I LOVE THIS POST XD What a perfect feature, though I have not read most of these so I am no help. I hoard a lot of book I would likely not read, but I just can’t bear to part with them because what if I get into the mood ONE DAY?! I’m super torn about whether I should pick up Queen of Tearlings for similar reason that you listed above. The reviews turn me off and the plot sounds like it’s been done to death but but but the covers are really good? Same to Anna, I initially bought a Kindle copy bc I heard people touting it as the sweetest romance ever – but I read the negative review and as always, I agree with the negative people, like the snarky old biddy that I am XD

  37. I love this post as much as the other DNF-ing post. I continually stare at books which have been on my shelf a while and contemplate whether the length of times it’s been on my shelf unread means I should let it go. I am trying to get better about giving up on books and admitting defeat when reading them because I am the worst for giving too many second chances to books. I think, sometimes, you just have to admit defeat and accept a book isn’t for you. On the other hand, it seems other people’s reviews have put you off some of these books a bit and I like to at least give a book a chance first, because you may find yourself being the odd one out when it comes to a book (this doesn’t happen often, but I’m an eternal optimist).

    I have to say, Anna and the French Kiss, I almost told you not to bother because that was my least favourite book in that little series, I just didn’t connect with it, but then I loved Lola and the Boy Next Door and Isla’s book was a give or take one for me. I don’t know, it is fluffy so it may not be the book for you, but who knows?

  38. Out of those, the only one I’ve read was the Selection. I voted to throw it away. *laughs* The first book was okay, not great but not terrible. The books since that first one have been 2-stars for me. I just wanted to smack America so much, and some of the plot was just so CONVENIENT it made me wonder why I was even reading past the first book. But it was also kind of like crack in that, after reading the first book, even though I KNEW I wasn’t going to like the rest of the series, I had to read them. So I borrowed #2 and #3 from the library. But now that I’ve finished #3 I will not be reading any more of them.

    As far as how long I keep books that I haven’t read. It depends. I just cleaned out my TBR shelf the other day because I couldn’t fit any more books on it. So anything that I’d had sitting there more than 6 months, I picked up, read the back cover, and if it didn’t grab me anymore it went to my ‘get rid of’ shelf. Everything else went back on the TBR shelf. So I dumped about 8 books, but also added 10 more that were sent to me. (I’m not sure that counts as clearing out, since I ended up with more books than I started with!) Before this, my usual rule for myself was that if I’d had it a year, I either had to read that book NEXT (after my current read was done), or it had to go away. Otherwise I’d never get rid of any of them!

  39. Get rid of the Selection, it was really meh!!! But don’t get rid of Tearling it was really good, fab infact.

    I hate getting rid of books but I am reading Spark Joy by Marie Kondo on the Japanese art of tidying, part of that is about getting rid of books and that inspired me to have a massive clear out, now I only have space for books that make me happy, The Selection wasn’t one of those!!

  40. I just recently purchased Afterworlds. I heard it was dystopian and I do love a good dystopian book. I wish you read it and let me know what YOU think, lol. I haven’t read any of the other books on your list here. I have Anna and the french Kiss as well but I lost enthusiasm after all the negative reviews. If it’s just cheating then maybe I should read it for myself, cuz I don’t care about that. I don’t know yet though. I guess I am not really helpful at all here, sorry.

  41. Actually, I put books that were meh to me on Book Mooch, I give some tom my boyfriends mom, or I have a box of books giveaways-then you have more room see-and it all goes to someone who will want to read them.

  42. I haven’t read ALL of these books, but I know a lot about them and I have read a couple. I voted based on my own opinions or what the majority of the reviewers say. It seems like for the most part, everyone voting has agreed with my choice!

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