Rather than list the specific titles I’m reading now, I thought it might be fun to look at the categories they fall into. I suspect many others have some similar categories in their to-be-read piles:
The friend’s book. I want to read it, not only because it looks good, not only so that I can talk to my friend about it, but also because it has already been sitting here too long, getting buried by other books. Luckily my friend is not likely to take offense at the delay, since chances are that one of my books is also sitting in her immense TBR stack.
The serious, important book. I know I should read it. It will help me understand what’s going on in the world. The quality of the writing will be a good lesson for me as a writer. But I just feel so heavy when I look at it. Like I’m back in school. I’ll save it for a long, rainy afternoon when I can really concentrate.
The book everyone’s talking about. I don’t necessarily want to read this one. But I feel like I should, just so I’ll understand all the references and inside jokes, and figure out why so many people have bought it.
The gift book. I wouldn’t have bought this for myself, but someone got it for me. I haven’t been in the mood for it yet, but I will try it eventually. (Some gift books miss the mark. Others, like Anne Fadiman’s Ex Libris, a gift from my husband, become new favorites of mine.)
The guilty pleasure. It won’t change the world or even my life. But I’m pretty sure it will be fun to read.
The award winner. I want to see what’s being celebrated and admired in YA right now, and why.
The free book. My library was giving this away! I had to pick it up. I know I’ll want to read it someday.
The book I’m not ready for. I definitely want to read this, either because the subject appeals to me or I love the author’s other work (or both). But I haven’t been in the mood for it yet. I know that when I’m in the right mood, I’ll devour it.
Most of the books in my stacks are just books I know I want to read, but haven’t gotten to yet. I read every day, but I can never catch up. The upside of that is: I’ll never run out of reading material, either.