7 Books in 7 Days TBR | Self-Challenge

seven books in seven days

I have been really falling behind on reading lately. I have 15 books on Netgalley I haven’t even touched and my poor spending habits and book-buying addiction have caused me to purchase more books than I have been reading recently.

Because of this, I was inspired by someone on a book reading Facebook group to read 7 books in 7 days.

My main goal is to read books that have either been on my TBR for a long period of time, or to read Netgalley books so I can start catching up.

Here is my tentative TBR for the week of June 22-28 (this post is a couple days late..)!

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In the city of Natal in northeast Brazil, several local women negotiate the terms of their intimate relationships with foreign tourists, or gringos, in a situation often referred to as “sex tourism.” These women each have different experiences, but they all share in the desire to “escape” their lives as young, poor, racialized women in Brazil.

Based on original ethnographic research and presented in graphic form, Gringo Love explores the hopes, dreams, and experiences of these women against a backdrop of entrenched social inequality and increasing state surveillance leading up to the World Cup of 2014. It touches on important contemporary scholarly issues, including sexual economics, transnational mobility, transnational love and relationships, romantic imaginaries, gender representation, race and inequality, visual anthropology, and ethnographic methods.

The graphic story is accompanied by analysis and contextual discussions, which encourage students to engage with the narrative and expand their understanding of the broader social issues therein.

This is one of the Netgalley books that I want to read. It’s a graphic novel on research of sex tourism in Brazil. I’m a little skeptical on how much information is actually going to be in this book, since it’s a graphic novel, but I have high expectations.

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The year is 1991. Scrunchies, mixtapes and 90210 are, like, totally fresh. Cassie Worthy is psyched to spend the summer after graduation working at the Parkway Center Mall. In six weeks, she and her boyfriend head off to college in NYC to fulfill The Plan: higher education and happily ever after.

But you know what they say about the best laid plans…

Set entirely in a classic “monument to consumerism,” the novel follows Cassie as she finds friendship, love, and ultimately herself, in the most unexpected of places. Megan McCafferty, beloved New York Times bestselling author of the Jessica Darling series, takes readers on an epic trip back in time to The Mall.

 

This is another Netgalley book that has been on my TBR for a few months now. I have recently been in the mood for a light-hearted YA book, so I’m hoping The Mall delivers just that.

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Bridie Devine, female detective extraordinaire, is confronted with the most baffling puzzle yet: the kidnapping of Christabel Berwick, secret daughter of Sir Edmund Athelstan Berwick, and a peculiar child whose reputed supernatural powers have captured the unwanted attention of collectors trading curiosities in this age of discovery.

Winding her way through the labyrinthine, sooty streets of Victorian London, Bridie won’t rest until she finds the young girl, even if it means unearthing a past that she’d rather keep buried. Luckily, her search is aided by an enchanting cast of characters, including a seven-foot tall housemaid; a melancholic, tattoo-covered ghost; and an avuncular apothecary. But secrets abound in this foggy underworld where spectacle is king and nothing is quite what it seems.

Blending darkness and light, history and folklore, Things in Jars is a spellbinding Gothic mystery that collapses the boundary between fact and fairy tale to stunning effect and explores what it means to be human in inhumane times.

I purchased this from Book of the Month a couple months back and have been interested in reading it since. From what I can tell, it’s going to be a little harder to read simply because it’s set in the Victorian era and the language reflects that, but I’m still really excited to read this one.

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Each year, eight beautiful girls are chosen as Paper Girls to serve the king. It’s the highest honor they could hope for…and the most demeaning. This year, there’s a ninth. And instead of paper, she’s made of fire.

In this richly developed fantasy, Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most persecuted class of people in Ikhara. She lives in a remote village with her father, where the decade-old trauma of watching her mother snatched by royal guards for an unknown fate still haunts her. Now, the guards are back and this time it’s Lei they’re after — the girl with the golden eyes whose rumored beauty has piqued the king’s interest.

Over weeks of training in the opulent but oppressive palace, Lei and eight other girls learns the skills and charm that befit a king’s consort. There, she does the unthinkable — she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens her world’s entire way of life. Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide how far she’s willing to go for justice and revenge.

This book received a lot of hype over the last couple years, which is why I ended up checking it out from my local library. I checked this book out over three months ago, and am finally deciding to get to it since my library just reopened and all old books are due soon (procrastination at its finest).

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A gun is sold in the classifieds after killing a spouse, bought by a teenager for needed protection. But which was it? Each has the incentive to pick up a gun, to fire it. Was it Rand or Cami, married teenagers with a young son? Was it Silas or Ashlyn, members of a white supremacist youth organization? Daniel, who fears retaliation because of his race, who possessively clings to Grace, the love of his life? Or Noelle, who lost everything after a devastating accident, and has sunk quietly into depression?

One tense week brings all six people into close contact in a town wrought with political and personal tensions. Someone will fire. And someone will die. But who?

I used to be a HUGE Ellen Hopkins fan, but haven’t read too many of her most recently published books. I picked this up at a book sale last year and have been wanting to read it since. Ellen Hopkins always handles dark, tough issues really well, so my expectations are very high with this one.

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In Brooklyn, eighteen-year-old Deya is starting to meet with suitors. Though she doesn’t want to get married, her grandparents give her no choice. History is repeating itself: Deya’s mother, Isra, also had no choice when she left Palestine as a teenager to marry Adam. Though Deya was raised to believe her parents died in a car accident, a secret note from a mysterious, yet familiar-looking woman makes Deya question everything she was told about her past. As the narrative alternates between the lives of Deya and Isra, she begins to understand the dark, complex secrets behind her community.

I chose this book for Book of the Month last year and just never got to it. I feel like this book blew up when it first came out, and I always get really nervous reading a book when there’s so much hype surrounding it. Now that the hype has died down, I’m going to give this book a chance.

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Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.

The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually their grandchild (the author) would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of their success in achieving generational upward mobility.

But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that this is only the short, superficial version. Vance’s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother, struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, and were never able to fully escape the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. Vance piercingly shows how he himself still carries around the demons of their chaotic family history.

This book is one I sort of have to read this summer, so I’m adding it to the list. Hillbilly Elegy is one of the options I have to teach my senior class at my new school. So, I need to read it and write notes to see if I actually would be interested in teaching it this upcoming school year.  Because of this, I’ll most likely be reading Hillbilly Elegy throughout the entire week, since it will take a while to read with my notetaking.

That is everything I hope to read this week! Just out of curiosity, what is the most amount of books you’ve ever read in a week? Mine is 5! Let me know down below!

Until next time, xx

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