January Wrap-up and How I Organize My TBR Tower

“She read books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live.” 🌱 Annie Dillard

Books and flowers

Perhaps I can blame it on the new year, but I must have been possessed with an energy boost for me to be able to read a total of 14 titles in January! ✨ In truth, I have been making more of an effort to organize my reading since I do have a lot of books on my TBR (To Be Read) pile and there are still a lot more coming in daily because of book clubs, friends’ recommendations, NetGalley, blog tours and author requests. Not complaining, though!

What I do is to first determine my reading goals, and I don’t mean the number of books. I have 5 categories:

  1. Read more Filipino books
  2. Read poetry
  3. Read nonfiction
  4. Books with deadlines (NetGalley, blog tour, book club BOTM, author requests)
  5. Everything Else in my Unread Shelf

Once that is done, I then make lists of what is urgent for every category based on how I feel about the book, the archive date in Netgalley, or the blog tour deadline. All of these details are written on my journal. Once done, it’s an added pleasure to manually tick off each item on paper. Journaling can be so therapeutic 😆

I used to rely on my Goodreads Want To Read shelf but I find that a personalized tracker works better for me, especially since it ensures I don’t forget any of my identified reading goals. If you’re a mood reader, I know this may sound a bit mechanical. I kind of see myself as a mood reader as well, so I do take my current state of mind into consideration. Right now I’m in the mood to complete all my pending books in NetGalley, so everything else is on hold and that works for me. Maybe next month I’ll focus on poetry, and the month after that on nonfiction. The point is whatever works for you, do it. Whatever system or non-system you put in place, the important thing is you still enjoy the act of reading. 👍🏻

That being said, here’s a rundown of what I read for January!

  1. In A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware 3/5⭐️

  2. Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert’s Story by Debbie Tung 4/5⭐️

  3. The Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham 4/5⭐️

  4. The Merchant of Oltrarno by J. Philip Ignacio 5/5⭐️

  5. Pilu of the Woods by Mai K. Nguyen 4/5⭐️

  6. You by Caroline Kepnes 3/5⭐️

  7. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo 3/5⭐️

  8. The Lottery and Other Stories by Shirley Jackson 4.5/5⭐️

  9. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov 4/5⭐️

  10. The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang 3.5/5⭐️

  11. Bagong Buwan by Mervin Malonzo, Hulyen, Julius Villanueva 5/5⭐️

  12. The Hangman’s Secret by Laura Joh Rowland 4/5⭐️

  13. Guinea Pigs by Tonino Benacquista 4/5⭐️

  14. The Girl Made of Clay by Nicole Meier 3/5⭐️

That’s it! It was definitely an epic month ✨ I can say that my categories also help in making sure I read a diverse range of books each month. Have you read any of these? Anything here that you might want to read? Let me know in the comments! Happy weekend 🌸

12 thoughts on “January Wrap-up and How I Organize My TBR Tower

  1. I try and prioritize my ARCs, too. That’s why I hate it when I realize I have requested too many for one month, because I tend to leave the unread titles behind and move on to the next month. *hangs head in shame* I love that Netgalley has the monthly reminder email, now. 👍✨


  2. Definitely going to check out “The Secret She Keeps.” It gave me the “The Girl On The Train” vibe, and I’m always down for a good mystery (´▽`).。o♡


    1. That’s really one of the challenges! But most Filipino creators would know how to advise you on how to order their books online, or directly from the publisher or bookish events. Maybe you can try asking them if ever. They are very friendly 😆

      Liked by 1 person

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