“TBR” Jars

There’s an old challenge circling around the YouTube book community in which BookTubers (YouTubers who talk about books) create “TBR Jars.” In these jars are the names of books they want to read off their “To Be Read” shelf, and every month they pull at least one book out of the jar to add to their monthly reading list.

I’ve always liked this idea. I think it’s a great way to start breezing through unread books you own instead of buying new ones. However, it never quite suited me as is. Since I generally search for my reading material based on mood, I don’t enjoy feeling forced into reading something just because the name came out of a jar. So I modified the idea to account for genre. Instead of just one jar, I now have seven!

The jars are dedicated to the following genres: science fiction, dark fantasy, fantasy, dystopia, contemporary, historical fiction, and classics. Whenever I need a book to read, I’ll just find the jar that suits my reading mood and pop out name! Genius, right? I thought so.

Below you will find the complete list of books contained within each jar. As you can see, I have quite a few books to go through, some of which I’ll admit have been on my shelves for years. There are 57 in total, so I’m trying desperately hard to avoid purchasing any new ones. It won’t work since some of these are parts of a series, but at least I’ll have tried to make a dent.


Science Fiction (Red)

  • Shadow Puppets by Orson Scott Card
  • Shadow of the Giant by Orson Scott Card
  • Xenocide by Orson Scott Card

Dark Fantasy (Orange)

  • Heat Stroke by Rachel Caine
  • Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Wolves at the Gate by Drew Goddard
  • Masques by Patricia Briggs
  • Mortal Danger by Eileen Wilks
  • Nightwalker by Jocelynn Drake
  • Nightseer by Laurell K. Hamilton
  • Working Stiff by Rachel Caine
  • Wolfsbane by Patricia Briggs
  • Dime Store Magic by Kelly Armstrong

Fantasy (Yellow)

  • Enchantment by Orson Scott Card
  • Bridge of Dreams by Anne Bishop
  • The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks
  • Firethorn by Sarah Micklem
  • Eragon by Christopher Paolini
  • The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
  • The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
  • Wizard’s First Rule by Terry Goodkind
  • Spellbinder by Melanie Rawn
  • Kushiel’s Dart by Jaqueline Carry
  • Ambassador’s Mission by Trudi Canavan
  • Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
  • Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
  • Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo

Dystopian (Green)

  • What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang
  • Sever by Lauren DeStefano
  • Cinder by Marissa Meyer
  • Article 5 by Kristen Simmons
  • Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons
  • Eve & Adam by Michael Grant
  • Glow by Amy Kathlee Ryan
  • Behemoth by Scott Westerfeld

Contemporary (Teal)

  • Meant to Be by Lauren Morill
  • Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrille Zevin
  • You Have Seven Messages by Stewart Lewis
  • Skinny by Ibi Kaslik
  • Nobody But Us by Kristin Halbrook
  • Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
  • The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
  • Halfway House by Katharine Noel

Historical Fiction (Blue)

  • Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
  • The Constant Princess by Philippa Gregory
  • Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • Rebel Angels by Libba Bray
  • The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
  • Hood by Stephen R. Lawhead
  • Lady of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larson

Classics (Purple)

  • The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  • Emma by Jane Austen
  • Persuasion by Jane Austen
  • Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
  • Northanger Abby by Jane Austen

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