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My Progress:

12 / 30 books. 40% done!

2024 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama (1)
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My Progress:

29 / 51 states. 57% done!

2024 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

My Progress:

26 / 50 books. 52% done!

2024 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

23 / 50 books. 46% done!

Booklist Queen's 2024 Reading Challenge

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48 / 50 books. 96% done!

2024 52 Club Reading Challenge

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27 / 40 books. 68% done!

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10 / 25 books. 40% done!

2024 Medical Examiner's Mystery Reading Challenge

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13 / 26.2 miles. 50% done!

Mount TBR Reading Challenge

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26 / 100 books. 26% done!

2024 Pick Your Poison Reading Challenge

My Progress:

68 / 104 books. 65% done!

Around the Year in 52 Books Reading Challenge

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44 / 52 books. 85% done!

Disney Animated Movies Reading Challenge

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74 / 165 books. 45% done!
Tuesday, May 02, 2023

Top Ten Tuesday: Random Reads

Today's TTT prompt is a fun one: The First Ten Books I Randomly Grabbed From My Shelf. We were instructed to close our eyes and point to ten books at random. Easy cheesy! If you want to join the TTT party, click on over to That Artsy Reader Girl for all the deets.

Since I have two different bookcases, I thought I'd give you a little peek into my library and explain how I chose my random ten. Here are my two main bookshelves, both of which are in my living room:

This one is huge, about 9 feet tall and 12 feet wide. The top two tiers hold review books that I've yet to read, alphabetized by author. All the rest of the books are volumes I have purchased, been gifted, or are review copies I enjoyed enough to keep. The lower shelves are organized by genre. I'd say I've read about half of them.

This large bookshelf tops my desk. The three rows of shelving are about 8 feet wide and 3 1/2 feet tall. It holds only review books that I haven't read yet, alphabetized by author. 

Other than the scriptures on my nightstand and the book cart next to my desk which holds my library finds plus a dozen or so paper books that need to be reviewed, these shelves house all of the books I own. (My husband's books are another story...) Even though I have fewer books than I did before I moved last July (by a couple thousand), the first comment most people make upon entering my home is, "Wow! That's A LOT of books." They're not wrong. 

At any rate, I decided to choose my ten randos from my shelves of review books since those volumes can use some highlighting while they await their turns to be read and reviewed. Also, note that I can't reach the higher shelves on these bookcases without a stepladder. Since I was too lazy to go grab one, for some of these I had to stand on my tiptoes, point in the general direction of a book, and go from there. Here's what I came up with:

First Ten Books I Randomly Grabbed From My Shelf(ves)  
- in the order I picked them -
- Parentheses indicate the publisher/publicist/author, etc. who sent the book to me and in what year they did so (as embarrassing as it may be). -  

1. The Lost Ones by Sheena Kamal (HarperCollins, 2018)—This series opener revolves around Nora Watts, an intuitive investigator who works for a P.I. When she receives a call that the daughter she placed for adoption as a baby—now a teenager—is missing, she can't help but get involved, even if it means dredging up the past she's worked so desperately to put behind her. 

2. Something About Sophie by Mary Kay McComas (HarperCollins, 2013)—When Sophie Shepard is summoned to the deathbed of a stranger but arrives too late to hear what he wanted to tell her, her curiosity is piqued. As she starts digging into her own mysterious past, she uncovers secrets that make her question everything she knows about herself, her birth mother, and the community in which—in another life—she might have been raised. 

3. The Beloved Girls by Harriet Evans (Hachette Book Group, 2022)—A successful barrister vanishes without a trace from a train station. Her disappearance leads back to a fateful summer in a mysterious old country house where her life was not the only one that was changed forever...

4. No Way Down: Life and Death on K2 by Graham Bowley (HarperCollins, 2010)—This non-fiction account tells the story of the worst mountain climbing disaster ever to happen on K2, the second-highest mountain on Earth.

5. Alone in the Woods by Rebecca Behrens (Sourcebooks, 2020)—This middle grade wilderness survival tale is about two girls who find themselves lost in the woods when a rafting trip in an isolated forest goes horribly wrong.

6. The Tumbling Girl by Bridget Walsh (Meryl Zegarek PR, 2023)—This is the first book in a Victorian mystery series starring private eye Albert Easterbrook. When a music hall scriptwriter's best friend is murdered, she enlists Easterbrook to find her killer.

7. The Mystery of Black Hollow Lane by Julia Nobel (Sourcebooks, 2018)—Another series opener, this middle-grade mystery stars Emmy, a young girl who's shipped off to a prestigious boarding school after her father's mysterious disappearance. Just before she leaves, an anonymous caller leaves her a box containing items they claim belonged to her missing dad. When Emmy sees symbols around her new school that match those she's seen in the box, she follows clues and discovers the existence of a secret society. Does the society have something to do with her father's disappearance? 

8. Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen (HarperCollins, 2022)—Ava Wong, a straight-laced Chinese American lawyer, gets caught up in her friend's lucrative counterfeit scheme. When the friend vanishes, Ava's left to deal with the consequences. 

9. Greenglass House by Kate Milford (HarperCollins, 2014)—The first book in a popular middle-grade series, this novel introduces readers to Milo, who helps his parents run an inn. Business is never brisk in winter, so Milo is anticipating a relaxing holiday when several unexpected guests come knocking. Suddenly, the inn is full of strange people and odd occurrences. What is going on? It's up to Milo and Meddy, the cook's daughter, to figure it out.

10. All the Stars in the Heavens by Adriana Trigiani (HarperCollins, 2015)—Set in the glittering world of 1935 Hollywood, this novel tells the tale of a former nun who becomes an assistant to starlet Loretta Young. Their friendship becomes fierce and binding as they experience the ups and downs of life together. 

There you go, ten random books off my shelves. Have you read any of them? Do any of them sound particularly compelling to you? Which titles are on your list today? I'd truly love to know. Leave me a comment on this post and I will gladly return the favor on your blog. I also reply to your comments here.

Happy TTT!


  1. Love seeing bookshelves!! My library is right when people walk in and I always get so many comments! haha. I haven't read any of these but Greenglass House is on my TBR!

    1. Right? You can tell who the booklovers are because they immediately walk closer to the shelves to browse. I love that! That's how I am at other people's houses :)

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Leslie!

  2. All of your books have the prettiest, coolest looking covers. And your bookcases are gorgeous!

    1. The covers are pretty, aren't they? I didn't really pay attention to that while I was posting them. LOL.

      I do love my bookshelves. My husband had the big one custom made for my birthday one year and we found the desk, which matches really well, on Craigslist a number of years ago.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Nicole!

  3. Yes, it is a lot of books, but not really for us book addicts, LOL! I am surprised by the number of books you have for review, I think that would stress me out and I would feel so much pressure to get to them! However, not everyone is as anxious as I am, LOL! I do love your shelves :)

    1. Right? I keep buying more books, so I guess I still don't have enough?? It's an addiction for sure.

      Yeah, I have way too many review books. I've tried to be more picky about what I accept, but it's still so hard for me not to want a copy of every free book that comes my way. I did donate a huge amount of review books when I moved, but I still have tons. I've given up on trying to catch up. These days, I do what I can and call it good.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Cindy!

    2. I keep buying books too, LOL! But, most of what I buy are used so I'm not breaking the bank doing it. It is very hard to say "no" to a free book, I agree :) Have a wonderful week!

  4. What nice and full bookcases you have! Very cool.

    My post:

    1. I really like these bookshelves. They're solidly constructed of real, hard wood so they hold my books well. They were a pain to move, though, since they're extremely heavy.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Lydia!

  5. No Way Down and Counterfeit both look really good to me. I think I would have a total panic attack if I had that many books for review from authors/publishers!

    1. I'm actually a lot more selective now than I used to be. Some of these review books are really old because I still want to read them. I'll review them all eventually. Maybe. Okay, probably not, but I am trying!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Helen!

  6. Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen sounds super good, and my local library has it! Happy Dance!

    1. It's supposed to be funny and entertaining. I'm down for that!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Rebecca!

  7. What a fun mix of books -- and I love your bookshelves!

    1. I have a wide variety of books on my shelves (at least in the review books sections). Everything else is pretty much mysteries and historicals. LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Lisa!

  8. Love the shelves. I need to invest in more hard copies so I have a reason to have them. Interesting list, thanks for sharing.

    1. The shelves are huge and, honestly, a little too big for our living room, but I don't care. I love my home library :)

      Thanks for popping in!

  9. I love seeing bookshelves and you’ve got some serious ones!! The only book I’ve even heard of from your list, Counterfeit, is one that I liked. I hope you enjoy these when you get to them - they all seem so interesting.

    Leah @ Leah’s Books

    1. Same! I'm always drawn to bookcases, no matter where I see them.

      I'm glad you liked COUNTERFEIT. It sounds like a fun read.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Leah!

  10. I enjoyed Greenglass House! Would definitely recommend it for a cozy, atmospheric winter read.

    1. It looks like a really great read and I've heard wonderful reviews. I'm really not sure why it's taken me so long to read it! I need to change that.

      Thanks for stopping in, Christina!

  11. Greenglass House & The Tumbling Girl sound like good reads!!

    1. I agree. Not sure why I haven't gotten to them yet, I just haven't. Too many other books have gotten in the way. You know how that goes...

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Captivated Reader!

  12. I love those shelves!

    I want to read Counterfeit.

    Have a great week!

    Emily @ Budget Tales Book Blog

    1. COUNTERFEIT seems like a really fun read. I need to get to it sooner rather than later. I hope we both enjoy it.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Emily!

  13. Your bookshelves are beautiful! I think The Tumbling Girl sounds like an interesting start to a series.

    1. It does, doesn't it? I need to give it a go and see what it's all about!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Louise!

  14. I love how eclectic your picks are! I've seen Trigiani's books around for so long but have yet to try anything by her.

    1. Ha ha. Yes, I have quite a variety of books on my shelves. At least review books :)

      I've read quite a few of Trigiani's books. She's a good writer. I haven't read anything by her in a few years, though. I should fix that.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Tanya!

  15. Wow, and I thought I had a lot of books! You have a very good mix of books here Susan and some that pique my interest. Most I have not heard of, so off to do some searching at my library.

    1. Even after getting rid of so many in the move, I still have tons of books. I'm trying to accumulate fewer review books and not to buy as many,'s not going super well. Ha ha.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Carla!

  16. I love your shelves! This was a fun prompt. I wonder if it is too late to participate.

    1. I don't think so! People TTT all week long. You should definitely join in.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Kami!

  17. Wow! Such pretty shelves! Funny thing -- I've seen 3 or 4 people pull Greenglass House off their shelves for this one! That used to be my daughter's favorite book.

    1. Oh, really? How funny! I didn't see it on any of the blogs I visited. I've heard great things about it. I need to read it soon.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Deanna!

  18. That's a lot of books! ;-) I love that you explained how you picked your random ten.

    1. Right? I'm such an addict!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Nicole!

  19. I love your shelves! Whenever I see a house with lots of books I always know I'm probably going to like that person lol. The Lost Ones looks excellent, and so does Greenglass House!

    1. Totally agree! And when I enter a house and see no books in just makes me sad. LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Greg.

  20. I really love the covers on The Mystery of Black Hollow Lane and Greenglass House, both make me want to read them. But I love the sound of Counterfeit and I'm adding that to my wish list.

    1. Same and I'm not even the biggest fan of illustrated covers. These draw me in, though. And COUNTERFEIT sounds like a fun read. I need to get to it soon.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Alex!

  21. Gorgeous bookcases! And I love the mix of books. I've read Greenglass House and really enjoyed it.

    1. I contemplated selling my bookshelves when we moved and buying smaller ones, but then I decided I really didn't want to part with them. They're a little big for our new, smaller house. Oh well.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Katherine!

  22. Yours is the second mention of Greenglass House I've seen in the past couple of weeks, and now I'm intrigued enough to add it to my future reads list.

    1. Oh, really? I've heard great things about the book. I don't know why I haven't read it yet. One of these days!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Deb!

  23. Your bookshelves are gorgeous! Nice list, The Beloved Girls especially caught my eye. Happy reading!

    1. The cover is very evocative, isn't it? The story sounds good, too. I like dual-timeline type mystery/thrillers where events in the present tie into events from the past.

      Thanks for stopping in, The Bookworm!

  24. Love your shelves! I haven't read any of these yet, but I always hear great things about Greenglass House. Happy reading!

    1. Same. I need to read it already!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Dedra!

  25. I hope you enjoy reading all of these when you get the opportunity! Thanks for stopping by my blog earlier.

    Pam @ Read! Bake! Create!

    1. This prompt reminded me that those books are on my shelves, so maybe that will help them get read sooner rather than later. LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Pam!

  26. Love your bookshelves! And I hope you'll love all of these review books :)

    1. I'm sure there are some gems among all the books on my shelves. I just need to find them! LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Lindsey!

  27. Ahhhh, your library wall is THE DREAM. I love the molding and the arches at the top on that piece; functional AND beautiful.

    But the brown one...oh my gosh. When our local library remodeled they added something very similar to that at the front where they display new releases, and I have been drooling over it for months. It looks so polished and STURDY. I don't even know which one is best, they're both some of the prettiest shelves I've ever seen in my life.

    Now I just want to zoom in and read every single title...

    1. They really are beautiful pieces and very sturdy. I considered parting with both of them when I moved into a smaller house, but I just couldn't do it. They actually both fit along one wall in my living room, with only about five feet to spare. It looks a little cramped, but that's okay—I love my library wall :)

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, RS!

  28. Beautiful pictures from your library. Mine is all over the house, have to see that I get some nice pictures together ...

  29. "Counterfeit" looks like it could be a fun read! I think I've seen it on Gooreads or another list somewhere because the cover does look familiar. Looks like you have a great book collection, and I hope you enjoy. Thanks also for visiting my website on this week and apologies for the delay in visiting here.


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