#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where we share 5 books on our TBR every Monday. You can learn more about the meme and future week’s themes here.

I haven’t done this meme yet this year, but I decided to participate this week because there are SO many books that I already own but haven’t read yet, so choosing 5 of them should be easy and fun. If you guys have been following my StoryGraph, you probably know that I primarily read audiobooks nowadays because they’re just so much easier to get through. I can listen on my walks to the grocery store, to work, etc. etc. But now I lost my airpods somewhere in my room and can’t find them no matter how hard I look, so maybe the ratio will balance. Here are the books that I own and am excited to read!

Malibu Rising

by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Full disclosure this book, and the next two on the list, actually fell into my possession because my mother is doing the Book of the Month Club, and when I went home for Christmas I took three of them back with me. I loved the other two Reid books that I read so far, and I am SO excited about Malibu Rising. I heard that it semi-ties into Daisy Jones and the Six with a side character turned main character, and it’s literally my favorite thing when authors do that, so this book is for sure top of the list.

Goodreads Summary: Four famous siblings throw an epic party to celebrate the end of the summer. But over the course of twenty-four hours, their lives will change forever.

Malibu: August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together, the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over—especially as the offspring of the legendary singer, Mick Riva.

The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud—because it is long past time to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth.

Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there.

And Kit has a couple secrets of her own—including a guest she invited without consulting anyone.

By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.

Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them… and what they will leave behind. 

The Last Thing He Told Me

by Laura Dave

I love a good enemies to friends story, and I also love a mystery, so this book sounds amazing. The main character is a stepmom with a child who doesn’t like her very much, and then they have to uncover the mystery of the missing husband/father together? Incredible premise. I don’t know anything about this book other than the Goodreads summary but honestly can’t wait to read it.

Goodreads Summary: We all have stories we never tell.
Before Owen Michaels disappears, he manages to smuggle a note to his beloved wife of one year: Protect her.

Despite her confusion and fear, Hannah Hall knows exactly to whom the note refers: Owen’s sixteen-year-old daughter, Bailey. Bailey, who lost her mother tragically as a child. Bailey, who wants absolutely nothing to do with her new stepmother.

As Hannah’s increasingly desperate calls to Owen go unanswered; as the FBI arrests Owen’s boss; as a US Marshal and FBI agents arrive at her Sausalito home unannounced, Hannah quickly realizes her husband isn’t who he said he was. And that Bailey just may hold the key to figuring out Owen’s true identity—and why he really disappeared.

Hannah and Bailey set out to discover the truth, together. But as they start putting together the pieces of Owen’s past, they soon realize they are also building a new future. One neither Hannah nor Bailey could have anticipated.

Beautiful Country

by Qian Julie Wang

I have heard so many positive things about this book, and it’s been at the top of my TBR for a long time. The only thing holding me back right now is that my copy of the book is a hardcover, which I hate. The effect of hardcover books on my reading habits should be studied. This book is supposed to be beautifully written and highly emotional, two things which I love.

Goodreads Summary: The moving story of an undocumented child living in poverty in the richest country in the world — an incandescent debut from an astonishing new talent

In Chinese, the word for America, Mei Guo, translates directly to “beautiful country.” Yet when seven-year-old Qian arrives in New York City in 1994 full of curiosity, she is overwhelmed by crushing fear and scarcity. In China, Qian’s parents were professors; in America, her family is “illegal” and it will require all the determination and small joys they can muster to survive.

In Chinatown, Qian’s parents labor in sweatshops. Instead of laughing at her jokes, they fight constantly, taking out the stress of their new life on one another. Shunned by her classmates and teachers for her limited English, Qian takes refuge in the library and masters the language through books, coming to think of The Berenstain Bears as her first American friends. And where there is delight to be found, Qian relishes it: her first bite of gloriously greasy pizza, weekly “shopping days,” when Qian finds small treasures in the trash lining Brooklyn’s streets, and a magical Christmas visit to Rockefeller Center — confirmation that the New York City she saw in movies does exist after all.

But then Qian’s headstrong Ma Ma collapses, revealing an illness that she has kept secret for months for fear of the cost and scrutiny of a doctor’s visit. As Ba Ba retreats further inward, Qian has little to hold onto beyond his constant refrain: Whatever happens, say that you were born here, that you’ve always lived here.

Inhabiting her childhood perspective with exquisite lyric clarity and unforgettable charm and strength, Qian Julie Wang has penned an essential American story about a family fracturing under the weight of invisibility, and a girl coming of age in the shadows, who never stops seeking the light. 

You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty

by Akwaeke Emezi

I got this book as an e-ARC from Edelweiss and I no joke SCREAMED when I got approved. You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty is bisexual representation written by a nonbinary author, and if it’s anything as good as the cover art, I just know I’m going to love it. It doesn’t come out until May so it may be a month or so before I actually read it, but I am so excited.

Goodreads Summary: Feyi Adekola wants to learn how to be alive again.

It’s been five years since the accident that killed the love of her life and she’s almost a new person now—an artist with her own studio, and sharing a brownstone apartment with her ride-or-die best friend, Joy, who insists it’s time for Feyi to ease back into the dating scene. Feyi isn’t ready for anything serious, but a steamy encounter at a rooftop party cascades into a whirlwind summer she could have never imagined: a luxury trip to a tropical island, decadent meals in the glamorous home of a celebrity chef, and a major curator who wants to launch her art career.

She’s even started dating the perfect guy, but their new relationship might be sabotaged before it has a chance by the dangerous thrill Feyi feels every time she locks eyes with the one person in the house who is most definitely off-limits. This new life she asked for just got a lot more complicated, and Feyi must begin her search for real answers. Who is she ready to become? Can she release her past and honor her grief while still embracing her future? And, of course, there’s the biggest question of all—how far is she willing to go for a second chance at love?

Akwaeke Emezi’s vivid and passionate writing takes us deep into a world of possibility and healing, and the constant bravery of choosing love against all odds.

Queens of Geek

by Jen Wilde

I’ve been wanting to get around to reading this book for sooooo long. I got a physical copy for Christmas this year and now it’s so within my reach and it’s been two months and I somehow still haven’t read it. Of all the books on this list, this will probably be the one that I read first. I think the only reason I didn’t read this when it first came out is that I was on an anti-YA kick, but now I’ve come out the other side and feel okay reading any book regardless of age range.

Goodreads Summary: Three friends, two love stories, one convention: this fun, feminist love letter to geek culture is all about fandom, friendship, and finding the courage to be yourself.

Charlie likes to stand out. She’s a vlogger and actress promoting her first movie at SupaCon, and this is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star Reese Ryan. When internet-famous cool-girl actress Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with her best guy friend Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about a fan contest for her favorite fandom, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde, chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, is an empowering novel for anyone who has ever felt that fandom is family.