Shelves of Shame

Today I’m talking about the shame that resides on my shelves — aka the books that I’ve owned since before I became a blogger in 2010 but STILL haven’t read. And it’s a lot more than 10 but I’m only going to talk about 10 of them and maybe you could tell me which ones I should seriously stop delaying. I feel like a lot of these are still unread because my reading tastes have evolved SO MUCH since before I was a blogger. As part of my whole bookshelf revamp project, I recently went through and actually officially got rid of some of them that had been on my shelves for even longer than 6 years because I was honest with myself about my interest towards them. PLUS, I figured I can always go get them out at the library if my interest is piqued again.

So, here we go….my list of shame:


Owned & unread books

1. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller: This was one of those books I’m certain was on summer reading lists in high school and I finally did buy it at a used book sale telling myself I should read it like so many other more ~classic~ type books. Didn’t really plan on letting it go unread for like 8 years.

2. I Capture The Castle by Dodie Smith: I had bought this one at a used book sale as well and I’m pretty sure it was because of randomly perusing Goodreads and I was familiar with the title and that people liked it…so I bought it.

3. Dracula by Bram Stoker: Another classic I swore I would read!

4. My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult: Pretty much add most Jodi Picoult books to this list because I’ve owned a bunch of them but haven’t read any of them. I think I put them off because I’ve heard suuuuch mixed things about her books in general but they were super cheap at book sales and someone gave me like 4 others.

5. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini: I remember I always saw this one all over the place so finally bought it when I saw it at a used book sale! It was like a top priority book for me so I have NO idea why I never got to it.

6.Β  Girl With A Pearl Earring by Tracey Chevalier: I read a LOT of historical fiction before I started blogging and this one had come highly recommended in the genre…but I never got to it.

7.Β  The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls: I feel like this is one that everyone raved about and everyone STILL raves about all the time and probably out of this whole list it’s the one I think I will read the soonest.

8. Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson: I never really read YA before I started blogging (because I don’t think I really knew it was a thing) but I had loved Speak and ended up buying this because I wanted to try a new book from her. I’ve since read other books from her but still not this one.

9. Mansfield Park by Jane Austen: I’m ashamed to admit this as a Jane Austen lover.

10. The Help by Kathryn Stockett: This one was EVERYWHERE — on Goodreads, in the hands of people I knew IRL, on the tables at Borders and Barnes and Noble. I think it’s crazy popularity scared me off even though I bought it.

Top Ten Tuesday, asΒ  always, is hosted at my other blog — The Broke & the Bookish

This week’s topic is: Top Ten Books That Have Been Unread on My Shelves or TBR Since Before I Started Blogging



So tell me…which of these should I finally get to?? What books are on your list of shame??

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Dude, Fever 1793 is so good! I think you’d love it!

  2. The Glass Castle is really interesting. I just read it this summer and I really enjoyed it

  3. Definitely The Help! The book is fantastic and a must read.

  4. Kelsey Cooper says:

    I LOVED My Sisters Keeper – tears. so many tears. I didn’t like the movie though – so read the book first! I like all of Jodi Piccoults books, but I read most of them back-to-back-to-back-to-back, and it got to be too much. So I haven’t read her last few releases.

    I didnt enjoy The Help AS MUCH as I thought I would, but it was an easy read and I did enjoy it. Definitely give it a try!

    This makes me worried to go see my TBR Shelf. So. Many. Books.

  5. The help, read the help

  6. Khaled Hosseini is one of my favorite authors! The Kite Runner and all of his other books are so well written.

  7. I have a long list like this too. πŸ™ I’ve started reading Dracula sooo many times and should really make it a priority to finish this year. Anyway, the only one of these that I’ve read is The Glass Castle which I do very much recommend.

  8. Oh my goodness, you *must* read I Capture The Castle. I have a tattered copy that I bought from my school book sale when I was about 14, and I read it every couple of years – I always find something different in it, too. It’s the sort of book to get lost in while drinking a giant cup of tea, so definitely one to read as Autumn draws in!

  9. I’ve read Catch 22, only because it was required reading. I also read The Glass Castle, but it wasn’t my cup of tea. My TTT list

  10. I also have The Help and The Kite Runner on my list! They just feel intimidating to me because so many people love them. And they’re not my preferred genre, so I don’t reach for it often… I would recommend you one of these to pick up, but unfortunately I haven’t read any of them.. Seems like you’re not the only one who hasn’t read these πŸ˜€

  11. I really enjoyed The Glass Castle. Hopefully you’ll like it too! I’m so excited that they are making into a movie! That should be great. Especially since my girl Brie Larson is in it! πŸ˜€ My Top Ten Tuesday!

  12. I haven’t read any of those so I can’t help you choose which ones to stop delaying. However, I do understand their appeal and have all of them on my TBR as well. Good list of great books!

  13. Wow, I never knew Laurie Halse Anderson write Fever 1793! I remember reading that way back in the day (seriously, I was young and this book was intense) and liking it so much, but have since sort of let it slip from my thoughts. That’s really neat!
    I definitely still need to read I Capture the Castle and Mansfield, too! And I definitely recommend Girl With a Pearl Earring – I think I ended up sitting and reading the whole thing in one day because of how interesting it was. Nice list!

  14. Catch 22 has been on my TBR FOREVER! But it’s so freaking intimidating. I gave read a few on your list though: The Help, The Glass Castle, Fever 1793 and The Kite Runner. I think my favorites were Kite Runner and The Help. You should read both of those for sure.

  15. You definitely need to get to My Sister’s Keeper and The Help. Those were both very good reads. I haven’t read the others, but I heard The Kite Runner is very good too.

    I have Stephen King’s 11/22/63 still waiting to be read. I need to get to that one sometime. I need to look into his newer books too. He has so many that I need to read. Are you a King fan by chance?

  16. Definitely read I Capture the Castle! It’s such a quirky, fun little read!

  17. My Sister’s Keeper is amazing, one of my absolute favourite books!

  18. The Help has been on my TBR pile for so long! I’m a bit worried about it because I adore the film so I know I’ll be comparing them the whole time. I’ve been told the audiobook of The Help is fantastic so I might give that a try

  19. Mansfield Park was the last Austen book I read to complete the collection! And that was just last year. Funny how that works, huh?

  20. I read The Glass Castle about a million years ago but I still think about it all the time. From all the others you listed, it’s the only one I’d say is a must read for you!

  21. I’ve only read Catch-22 and Dracula. I enjoyed both. I think I’ve read Dracula twice. Both were a part of my own classic reading challenge. Happy Reading! πŸ™‚

  22. I’ve only read Dracula, The Kite Runner, and The Help, but recommend them all. All very different, but very good.

  23. you gotta read the glass castle!! I read it and it blew my mind.

  24. Girl With The Pearl Earring is one of my faves! And The Kite Runner is incredible too

  25. I read a Girl with a Pearl Earring is great and the movie is so beautiful. I also read My Sister’s Keeper. Jane Austin is also a great read. If you plan to read any of them start with Jane Austin, My Sister’s Keeper and Girl with a Pearl Earring and end with The Help. The Help I put in the category of fun history lessons. Maids know everything.

  26. You HAVE to read The Help, I only read it this year but it was so good. I also liked My Sisters Keeper, not my favourite but definitely a good one!

  27. Heather Currie says:

    My Sister’s Keeper is AH-MAZING!! It was the first one of her’s that I read and I couldn’t put it down. A real tear jerker though :'(

    I also really enjoyed The Help and finished it within a couple days after watching the movie – and of course the book is better πŸ˜‰

  28. I love Dracula–so good! Kite Runner and Mansfield Park are on my TBR as well. I think a copy of Kite Runner has been sitting on my shelf for at least 3 years now–eep!

  29. You must must must read I Capture the Castle! One of my favorite books of all time. So perfect and wonderful.

  30. I vote for The Help! That book is amazing and has all the feels!

  31. What a good idea! Maybe I should do a list of shame as well πŸ™‚ I recently read my first Jodi Picoult book. Picture perfect, I am still working on the review;) I had heard so much about her writing from friends and wore so excited. Although the one I read didn’t live up until the expectations, I will give her another chance. And I think you should read the Sister’s Keeper book! πŸ™‚

  32. Lauren Blanchard says:

    I only read I Capture the Castle recently myself, after reading “Keeping the Castle” – which had been recommended to me as a soft Jane Austen-esque novel. I LOVED Keeping the Castle and wanted to read what it had been an homage to. I think Keeping the Castle was more satisfying, but both were delightful and funny and totally worth it.

  33. It has been so long since I used my book blog, but I do love these posts and your blog.

    I should probably get back into it. This is an interesting concept; I’ve never really felt “shame” of not having read a book that I’ve owned for a long time. I finally just started reading Suite FranΓ§aise this month after having owned a copy for probably close to 10 years.

    • I mean I don’t actually feel TOO much shame…or else I probably would crack. More so just being a tinge bit dramatic for the sake of a blog title. Also Suite Francaise is totally one I’ve owned for almost 10 years too. ALL OF THE SHAME.

  34. I love Capture the Castle!! I recommend it! The help I had trouble getting into because of the changing pov each chapter and the written dialog. It was sadly easier for me to understand it in film version…

  35. Love The Glass Castle and Fever 1793! Read both of those awhile ago and really enjoyed them both (Especially as Fever 1793 is kinda different from what I’ve read of Laurie Halse Anderson as it’s historical fiction).Can’t honestly recommend My Sister’s Keeper as Jodi Picoult books aren’t my thing. Mansfield Park is kinda the black sheep of Austen’s books but a really interesting one all the same. Great list!

  36. Totally read The Help and Fever 1793! Catch-22 is like the most confusing thing ever and I hated it (but I’m also not a big fan of war books and it’s set during war). I also don’t love Mansfield Park, like it’s alright but like Austen has better ones.

  37. The Help, Fever 1793 and The Kite Runner are all ones you should definitely read. My Sister’s Keeper and the Girl with the Pearl Earring were good, but nothing I’d say you ‘re missing out on anything huge if you don’t….

    Hated Catch-22 so can’t help ya there!

  38. You should definitely read Girl With A Pearl Earring and The Help. I loved them both!

  39. I don’t think you should be that ashamed of the books you have unread on your shelves, in our house we have a whole bookcase…

    Mel ★

    • heh unfortunately this was only 10 of them. I have a whole bookcase too. WE SHALL NOT BE ASHAMED BY OUR UNREAD BOOKS πŸ˜›

  40. Definitely read Fever! It is a quick read, and it’s so interesting. It definitely made me more interested in historical fiction. In addition, being so close to Philadelphia, you will really love learning about what it was like and it will make you want to actually make yourself a field trip to see all those places! I promise!

  41. I remember being obsessed with Fever 1793 in like sixth or seventh grade!! Unforgettably that book but it’s super intense and worth reading! The Help is also great but tbh so is the movie and that might just be easier? I feel like a book traitor by saying that haha but in my opinion it’s a rare case where the movie really is just as good, and if you’re probably not going to make time for the book, you should def watch the movie!

  42. I’ve read the first 8 on your list and my favorite is I Capture the Castle, which I’ve read twice. But Fever 1793 is really great too. I hated Catch-22 a lot, but I know some people love it, I just don’t understand why πŸ™‚

  43. I read ‘The Kite Runner’ just for fun because I have to read ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’ by the same author for my literature class.


    Finished it in a matter of 2 days (the fastest for me, cuz I am a slow-reader), and after I finished reading it I cannot hold back my tears. The friendship between Amir and Hassan, and what they have gone through the entire book still lingers with me even years after I have finished reading it.

    I have made this book as a sort of yearly ‘read-back’ because it is so damn good, I cannot recommend you enough.

  44. Definitely read The Kite Runner

  45. I’ve only read 3/10, but here you go!

    Catch-22 by Joseph Heller: This is definitely weird and (charmingly) odd, but it’s also very funny.

    I Capture The Castle by Dodie Smith: The book was not for me, and I only slightly liked the movie better (because of a young Henry Cavill!).
    Mansfield Park by Jane Austen: I know more about the plot of this book from watching The Jane Austen Book Club than by actually reading it.