Happy New Year! It’s another year, which means another year full of good books (hopefully) and lots of time to read.

This year, I decided to continue my tradition of setting a yearly TBR for myself. Yet again, I’ve chosen five fiction and five nonfiction books for my TBR. I am excited to read every single one of these books. Even better? They’re all books I already own, so I have absolutely no excuse not to read them.

Here are the top ten books I’m planning on reading in 2019:


The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry

I’ll admit I was initially attracted to this book because of the cover. But I’ve since heard some amazing things about this book. It ended up on quite a few favorite lists at the end of 2018, and I’m hoping I’ll love it, too.

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

I meant to read this last year, but never got around to it. I’ve heard amazing things, and seeing it on Obama’s favorite books list is made me want to read this even more. I’m planning on getting to this one early in the year.

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

While I didn’t love The Secret History as much as everyone else seems to, I did enjoy it quite a bit. I’ve been putting off reading The Goldfinch, but people keep recommending it to me, and I finally picked up a copy, so I need to read it.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

This is another book I’ve been seeing everywhere. I finally read the synopsis, and decided to pick up a copy. It just sounds like a lovely, cozy read. And I’ve learned my lesson about putting off reading books, so I do want to read this one before the film adaptation is released.

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Yes, I know. I can’t believe I still haven’t read this one, either. I have heard great things about this book, and I think I’ll really enjoy it. I’m looking forward to finding out.


Einstein: His Life and Universe by Walter Isaacson

I don’t read a ton of biographies (they tend to be really long and dense), but I absolutely loved Isaacson’s Leonardo da Vinci when I read it last year. This year, I’d really like to get to his biography of Albert Einstein, because Einstein is another figure I am extremely interested in. I’m planning on listening to the audiobook because 1. I can’t find my copy in the giant stacks of books everywhere, and 2. it’s narrated by Edward Herrmann, aka Richard Gilmore.

Botanical Shakespeare: An Illustrated Compendium by Gerit Quealy

I am planning on finishing my read-through of the complete works of Shakespeare this year, so I figured it would be a good time to read this one.

Becoming by Michelle Obama

I meant to read this right when it came out a few months ago, but didn’t get around to it (the end of the year was kind of crazy). But I love Michelle Obama, and I am really excited about this book! I’m really hoping to get to it in the next month or two.

The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration Into the Wonder of Consciousness by Sy Montgomery

I keep hearing amazing things about this book. I’ve been meaning to read more nonfiction about nature, and I am particularly fascinated by octopuses (yes, that’s the correct plural, I looked it up). I think they’re smarter than most people realize, and I would definitely like to find out more.

Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

This is another book that’s been on my TBR for a while. I picked up a copy last year in the big Barnes & Noble sale, and would really like to read it soon. I’m continuing reading one nonfiction book a month this year, and I always like having shorter books to choose from, and I think this’ll be perfect.

That’s it for this year’s reading list. I do have high hopes that I can read all of these by the end of the year.

What’s on your 2019 reading list?

Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘It will be happier’ – Alfred Lord Tennyson

32 thoughts

  1. Usually I read based on my mood, so I’m not sure what books I will be reading this year, just that I hope I’ll pick up more books that I will enjoy. It’s great to have a plan though, and it saves for many long ponderings and all that. I hope you do read and enjoy all these books by the end of the year!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I want to read The Essex Serpent, An American Marriage and Becoming too! Eleanor Oliphant was my absolute favourite book of 2018. The Shadow of the Wind was my favourite book of 2017! I also really loved The Goldfinch 🙂 You have some great choices in here – I hope you love all these books!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Good luck with your list! I made a list of ten books I wanted to read in 2018 and didn’t manage a single one of them. However, I’m going to keep trying. Yours all sound really intriguing to me too — The Shadow of the Wind is one that keeps coming up lately and maybe i should add that to my intentions. Wishing you much good reading in the New Year.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great List. Becoming is also on my list for this year. I can’t wait to read it. I enjoyed Goldfinch though it has gotten mixed reactions. I think it’s because it’s so long and as a result, there may seem to be parts that move a little slower than others. For me, the book held my attention and I couldn’t wait to get to the end.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The Essex Serpent and Eleanor Oliphant are brilliant books, I loved them both. I really want to read The Goldfinch this year too – I’ve had a hardback copy since it was first published but keep putting off reading it but this is the year I will get to it. Hope you get to read all the books on your list and that you really enjoy them. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

        1. I get that. I’m hoping to read it before the movie, but I still have until October. I have a paperback edition, so it doesn’t seem that intimidating. (I just won’t look at the page numbers)

          Liked by 1 person

  6. Goodluck with your list Stephanie!
    I’m about halfway into Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine and it’s a really great read. Very intriguing and an interesting storyline, I hope you really like it x

    Liked by 1 person

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