TBR Declutter! – Down the TBR Hole #17



So I tend to do these posts on Saturday’s but I was super busy yesterday and this week that I didn’t get any time to schedule this one, so here I am, doing it today!


Credit, as always, goes to the wonderful Lia @ Lost in a Story for this decluttering idea! I’ve been doing this for a while now and I have a load of fun doing it each week.

The aim is to declutter your tbr shelf. To do this:

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if youre feeling adventurous) books. Of course if you do this weekly, you start where you left off the last time.
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

The Muse 
by Jessie Burton

Synopsis: A picture hides a thousand words . . .

On a hot July day in 1967, Odelle Bastien climbs the stone steps of the Skelton gallery in London, knowing that her life is about to change forever. Having struggled to find her place in the city since she arrived from Trinidad five years ago, she has been offered a job as a typist under the tutelage of the glamorous and enigmatic Marjorie Quick. But though Quick takes Odelle into her confidence, and unlocks a potential she didn’t know she had, she remains a mystery – no more so than when a lost masterpiece with a secret history is delivered to the gallery.

The truth about the painting lies in 1936 and a large house in rural Spain, where Olive Schloss, the daughter of a renowned art dealer, is harbouring ambitions of her own. Into this fragile paradise come artist and revolutionary Isaac Robles and his half-sister Teresa, who immediately insinuate themselves into the Schloss family, with explosive and devastating consequences.

I loved Jessie Burton’s debut, The Miniaturist, so I’m definitely keeping this on my list to read. A friend recently text me saying she read this on her holiday and loved it, so I’m really looking forward to read it!

Verdict: keep


My Husband’s Secret 
by Deborah O’Connor

Synopsis: Heidi and Jason aren’t like other couples.

Six years ago, Heidi’s daughter was murdered. A year later, Jason’s son Barney disappeared. Their shared loss brought them together.

By chance, Heidi meets a boy she’s certain is Barney.

But Jason is equally convinced it’s not him.

Is Heidi mad? Or is Jason hiding something? And can their fragile marriage survive Heidi’s newfound quest for the truth…

This does sound quite interesting, even though it also sounds like it could be super cliche, but I actually have this one on my Kindle to read already. It must have been a 99p book.

Verdict: keep


When They Come Calling 
by Sarah Fleming Mountford

Synopsis: Physician Anna Roberts runs a free health clinic in Kansas City where she spends her days taking care of the living and avoiding the spirits of the dead. A late night accident leaves Anna at the mercy of the strange man who saved her life, but Anna soon learns that meeting Jed was no coincidence.

As Anna is drawn into Jed’s dangerous world and a feud three thousand years in the making, she must come to terms with her own secrets and decide what she will do, when they come calling.

I obviously thought this was going to be creepy and liked the fact it was a paranormal story, but now I’ve reread the synopsis, I’m so not eager to read it. That’s the whole point of this meme after all!

Verdict: remove


This House is Haunted 
by John Boyne

Synopsis: Set in Norfolk in 1867, Eliza Caine responds to an ad for a governess position at Gaudlin Hall. When she arrives at the hall, shaken by an unsettling disturbance that occurred during her travels, she is greeted by the two children now in her care, Isabella and Eustace. There is no adult present to represent her mysterious employer, and the children offer no explanation. Later that night in her room, another terrifying experience further reinforces the sense that something is very wrong.

From the moment Eliza rises the following morning, her every step seems dogged by a malign presence that lives within Gaudlin’s walls. Eliza realizes that if she and the children are to survive its violent attentions, she must first uncover the hall’s long-buried secrets and confront the demons of its past.

A horror historical fiction!! Yes, I’m definitely keeping this one.

Verdict: keep


by Eleanor Waaserberg

Synopsis: There was me – my name is Green – and my little sister, Blue. There was October, who we called Toby, and Ellensia, Dylan, Liberty, Pet and Egg. There was Richard, of course, who was one of the Founders. And there was Freya.

We were the Family, but we weren’t just an ordinary family. We were a new, better kind of family.

We didn’t need to go to school, because we had a new, better kind of education. We shared everything. We were close to the ancient way of living and the ancient landscape. We knew the moors, and the standing stones. We celebrated the solstice in the correct way, with honey and fruit and garlands of fresh flowers. We knew the Bad and we knew how to keep it away.

And we had Foxlowe, our home. Where we were free.

There really was no reason for anyone to want to leave.

I remember seeing the cover for this on Amazon and being instantly drawn to it, and then reading the synopsis, which sounds amazing! This has pretty mediocre reviews, but I like the cult-y vibe it has to it.

Verdict: keep


The Game You Played 
by Anni Taylor

Synopsis: Two-year-old Tommy Basko goes missing from a popular inner-city playground. Six months later, his parents begin receiving cryptic messages in rhyme about Tommy. The police don’t believe the messages are from the abductor, but Tommy’s mother Phoebe is certain they’re a game meant for her.

Against the advice of the police, Phoebe decides to play the game.

At the cost of causing her marriage to shatter, Phoebe begins a frantic search for the writer of the rhymes.

When the shocking identity of the message-writer is discovered, Phoebe’s desperate race for the truth has only just begun.

Who took Tommy? And why?

Oh look, another story about a missing child… and with a terribly done photoshopped front cover!  That being said, this has really good reviews, especially for a thriller mystery that sounds to similar to other books out there! … plus it was 99p book and I already have it downloaded…

Verdict: keep


The Hatching 
by Ezekiel Boone

Synopsis: Deep in the jungle of Peru, where so much remains unknown, a black, skittering mass devours an American tourist whole. Thousands of miles away, an FBI agent investigates a fatal plane crash in Minneapolis and makes a gruesome discovery. Unusual seismic patterns register in a Kanpur, India earthquake lab, confounding the scientists there. During the same week, the Chinese government “accidentally” drops a nuclear bomb in an isolated region of its own country. As these incidents begin to sweep the globe, a mysterious package from South America arrives at a Washington, D.C. laboratory. Something wants out.

The world is on the brink of an apocalyptic disaster. An ancient species, long dormant, is now very much awake.

Eugh, just the cover of this one gives me the heeby geebies! Definitely keeping this creepy one on my list!

Verdict: keep


The Cold Kiss 
by John Rector

Synopsis: All Nate and Sara want is a new life in a new town, away from the crime and poverty of their past.  So, after being approached at a roadside diner by a man offering $500 for a ride to Omaha, they wonder if their luck might be changing.

At first it seems like easy money, but within a few hours the man is dead.

Now, forced off the road by a blizzard and trapped in a run-down motel on the side of a deserted highway, Nate and Sara begin to uncover the man’s secrets. Who he was, how he died, and most importantly, why he was carrying two million dollars in his suitcase.

Before they know it, Nate and Sara are fighting for their lives, and in the end, each has to decide just how far they are willing to go to survive.

After reading Rector’s most recent novel, I’m sceptical of getting any of his other stuff at the moment. I know I have one of his other books on my TBR and I’m just going to keep that one on the list and get rid of this one, because I don’t like the sounds of this one as much as the other.

Verdict: remove


While My Eyes Were Closed 
by Linda Green

Synopsis: Lisa Dale shuts her eyes and counts to one hundred during a game of hide-and-seek. When she opens them, her four-year-old daughter Ella is gone. Disappeared without a trace. The police, the media and Lisa’s family all think they know who snatched Ella. But what if the person who took her isn’t a stranger? What if they are convinced they are doing the right thing? And what if Lisa’s little girl is in danger of disappearing forever?

This sounds like all the other missing-child thrillers out there, but yet again, Zuky can’t resist a 99p deal on the Kindle.

Verdict: keep


Beneath the Surface 
by Heidi Perks

Synopsis: I don’t know where you are…

I don’t know what I’ve done…

Teenager Abigail Ryder is devastated when she gets home from school to find her family gone. Nothing makes sense. Things are missing from the house and her stepsisters’ room is completely empty. But the police think she’s trouble, and when grandmother Eleanor tells her to forget them all and move on, there’s no choice other than face the future – alone.

Fourteen years on, Abi and Adam are a happy couple on the verge of parenthood. But when the past comes back to haunt Abi, the only way forward is to go back and uncover the truth – and reveal the dreadful secrets a mother has been hiding all these years.

The first part of the synopsis has me lika “yaaas” and then the second bit comes along and  I’m like “o”. This basically sounds like the exact opposite of my taste but it was another 99p buy for my Kindle, so I gotta keep it.

Verdict: keep

Not the best week for decluttering this week, but that’s due to my trigger finger in the Kindle deals! Curse me a year ago for going nuts and buying so many books.


How many of these books do you know and want to read? Do you disagree with any of my verdicts? Let me know!

23 Replies to “TBR Declutter! – Down the TBR Hole #17”

  1. Ooh, I love The Game You Played, so I hope you enjoy that one! I tried to read While My Eyes Were Closed, but gave up on it because one of the POVs was from the person who took the child about three chapters in, which sort of ruins the mystery! 😝

    I have My Husband’s Son, The Muse, and Beneath the Surface only TBR as well! 😄

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve got The Muse on my TBR and it has been there for a while now. I will get around to reading it one day because it is a beautiful book, and I know that I will like it.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Me too. It’s a beautiful book and I really want to see if it is just as beautiful on the inside.


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