May 2018 Recap

May was a much better month for me. There’s still a lot going on in my life at the moment that isn’t so great but after April it’s nothing I can’t handle.

Reading wise though, May was another brilliant month. I managed to get through twelve books, which is again a 2018 personal best tied with last month, and I’m catching up on my Goodreads Reading Challenge too. Give me another month and I may even be ahead of my 125 book goal for the year.

Monthly Recaps - This Month

Books I Read

May Recap (1)

End of Days by Susan Ee – Four stars

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas – Four stars
Check out my review here.

Circe by Madeline Miller – Five stars
Check out my review here.

State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury – Three stars
Check out my review here.

Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh – Five stars
Check out my review here.

Ōkami by Renee Ahdieh – Three stars
Check out my review here.

Yumi by Renee Ahdieh – Three stars
Check out my review here.

Smoke in the Sun by Renee Ahdieh – Four stars
Check out my review here.

Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi – Five stars

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik – Five stars

Sea Witch by Sarah Henning – Five stars

Beyond a Darkened Shore by Jessica Leake – Four stars

May This Month

I’m very steadily catching up on my Goodreads Reading Challenge. After getting through 12 books in April and another 12 in May I am 100% confident that by the time we come to the end of June I’ll not only be on track but ahead of my goal for the year.

May GR 2018 Reading Challenge

The best book I picked up in May was Circe. There was a lot of competition this month because I got through some incredible books, but Circe was a tiny bit ahead of the rest. The development Circe went though over the thousands of years she was exiled on Aiaia was wonderful to explore, and Madeline Miller is the queen of Greek mythology retellings in my mind.


The worst book I picked up this month was Ōkami. It wasn’t terrible but what counted against it were the facts that it was a short story that didn’t add much to either Ōkami’s character or the overall story arc for the Flame in the Mist duology. Granted it didn’t take long to read at all, but you don’t need to pick this one up to understand what’s happening in Smoke in the Sun.



I’ve finally started writing again. This is a big moment for me, and while I can’t really say I’ve written a lot this month I have got something down on a Word document, and that’s more than I could have said previously this year.

One of the things I’m doing, and this is something I’ve always done no matter what I’m writing, is editing as I go along. So far I’ve written just under 5K words, but every single one of those words has been re-written at least once because when I finish a paragraph I go back and re-write it, and then when I finish a page or scene I’ll go back and re-work sections of it.

This was something I was doing even while working towards 50K words last November for NaNo. What I’m doing going forwards is setting myself a goal of 25K words a month, because maybe that will force me to cut down on my ad-hoc editing until I’ve finished the second draft of my WIP.

Life in General

There were two bank holidays in May, and they were sorely needed. During the first my mum and I took part in Southend’s Great Pier Walk. It’s something we do every year, walking up and down the longest pier in the world (and the pier that’s burnt down the most times as well).

May Recap (2)

I went to see Hairspray live on evening, again with my mum. I’d seen the movie before when it was first released, but it was something special being able to see it live on stage.

Hairspray the Musical

During the second bank holiday I travelled up to London and went to the V&A exhibition Fashioned From Nature. I took a fashion-related course while at university so it’s always something I enjoy learning more about. The exhibition focused on the way nature contributed to fashions of the past, and the affect fashions of the present are having on nature now.

May Recap (3)

I started talking to one of my friends about us potentially moving out and buying a place together, just as a first step to get us both on the property ladder. Granted we’re still at the very beginning stages of everything, but I’m very excited about potentially getting to live with one of my best friends again.

Monthly Recaps - Book Haul

A lot of books were released in May, so a lot of pre-orders were arriving on my doorstep. All I can say is it’s a good job I carefully budget each month.

May Recap (4)


May Recap (8)

May Recap (5)


May Recap (6)

Fairy Loot

May Recap (7)

Monthly Recaps - Last Month

In terms of what I’ll be reading in June I’m still going to be catching up with some of the May releases I haven’t gotten around to yet. One June release I am so excited to get my hands on though is My Plain Jane, and I expect a lot more YA contemporary will be moving over to my ‘read’ list next month. Now that summer’s here and the weather is reflecting that I’m in a very “YA contemporary” mood.

My Plain Jane

TTT Kasie West

I will also be taking a mini-break from blogging mid-June. I’m heading off the Dubai and Mauritius with my sister this month, so from June 20th I’ll be away from WordPress until July 5th when I get back home again and have recovered from the jet lag I’ll no doubt be stuck with.

I hope everyone else had a good May, and I hope you all have an even better June as well.

Does anyone else have any exciting summer holidays coming up, or do you plan to stay and enjoy the sun you have at home? Who else is really excited for the release of My Plain Jane, or is there another June release you can’t wait for? Let me know.

Happy reading!

47 thoughts on “May 2018 Recap

  1. I’m so glad to hear you’re slowly getting back to writing again, Beth, that’s fantastic news! I hope that you’ll keep on going, little by little, word by word, you can do this ❤ ❤
    It seems like you've read so many books this month, it's amazing – also I am so happy you ended up loving Emergency Contact, as you know it was one of my favorite books of these past few months! ❤
    I remember walking down the Southend Pier, it seems endless haha, but I loved it 😀
    I hope you're having a brilliant June so far, Beth! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Marie, yeah it’s about time right? Here’s hoping I manage to keep writing and stick to my monthly goal. That’s my next aim.
      May was tied with April for most books read in a month, I’m hoping to get through even more in June, and oh I loved Emergency Contact. It’s such a brilliant story so thanks for making me aware of it. ❤
      As long as it is it seemed longer when I was little. I dunno I guess that could be said for a lot of things right?
      Thanks, I hope you're having a brilliant June as well Marie. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow that’s a lot of books read! And that’s brilliant that you’ve started writing again 😀 I love southend- the pier walk sounds like a fun thing to do 😀 That’s such an awesome haul- really hope you enjoy my plain jane- I’m very much looking forward to that one!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 12 books? That’s AMAZING!! I really want to read a court of frost and starlight! And I’m really excited to read Circe! IT SOUNDS SO GOOD!!!

    I read Charmcaster and it was really good! Have fun in Dubai! xx❤️😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, and yeah I was thrilled with how many I managed to get through and that I’m catching up on my GR Reading Challenge to. A Court of Frost and Starlight is great, and Circe is incredible so I hope you love it.
      Great to hear, and thanks so much. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. OH MY GOODNESS My Plain Jane is going to be a thing??? I absolutely loved My Lady Jane, and I actually read Jane Eyre last year for my English class, so I’m so excited to see how many references I’ll be able to get from My Plain Jane! Thanks for making me aware of this upcoming release! 😆

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I feel like I’ve been waiting for this book for ages because I LOVED My Lady Jane and I’m so so glad we’re getting another book from the authors.
      That’s all right, I hope you love it though I’m sure you will. My Plain Jane is pretty much guaranteed to be amazing right?! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hello Beth ❤
    WOW twelve books in a month is amazing!! (And you even reviewed most of them!!) That's great to hear that it seems like you've really enjoyed some of the books that you've chosen. Now I feel like I really need to read Circe, especially since it beat out all of the other books on your list haha 🙂
    That's great that you're making progress on your WIP. Our internal editor is the worst, isn't it? I am super guilty of tweaking a scene or a paragraph until it sounds "just right", but in the next draft I end up cutting the scene all together or something 🙂 I find that it helps to set a timer for myself (10 or 15 minutes) and force myself to write without looking back for the entire time. Hope you have a good writing month in June. 25K words is a lot but you can definitely do it if you put your mind to it 🙂
    Sounds like you've done some fun activities this month as well! I haven't been to a fashion show yet but I also love fashion so it is something that I really want to see 🙂 And wow buying a house- that is ultimate adulting haha!
    June will be a busy month for me. Lots of work, my fiance is moving in, and we might get a second dog!!
    Wishing you a wonderful June! Looking forward to hearing what you think about the YA contemporary books on your TBR 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Sophie. Yeah I was more than pleased with my progress this month and the fact that I’m catching up on my GR Reading Challenge too. Circe is amazing, honestly I can’t even begin to recommend it enough.
      Oh it really is, I keep going back to what I have written and realising I can write it better so I keep re-writing it. I feel like I’m writing the same pages all over again which is why I’ve set my goal, if not I’ll never make any progress. Thanks Sophie, and yeah I had a good month so I’m hoping for better ones for the rest of the year. June is going to be busy for me too, but ohh another dog that’ll be amazing right?!
      Thanks Sophie, I hope you have a great June too. 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think setting a word count goal is a great idea! During Camp Nano it definitely helped me to focus on getting words down rather than making sure that everything is perfect 🙂 Happy writing!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I cannot wait to get my hands on Spinning Silver or Circe! I just can’t justify buying them right now, but I’ve read such nice things. And I loved Uprooted. Good luck with your writing! I too try am trying to write outside NaNoWriMo and have a personal deadline for mid-June.

    Have fun in Dubai and enjoy your mini-break from blogging! I just discovered your blog and will acquaint myself with your older posts ^_^

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure you’ll love them when you do get them, and I’m doubly sure you’ll think they’re worth the wait when you read them. Especially if you’ve already loved Uprooted, Spinning Silver is just as good.
      Thanks, and I hope your deadline for writing goes well, not long until mid-June so I hope you’re close to your deadline at least.
      Thanks so much! 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. OMG! You’ve read so many books already hahah that’s almost my entire GR goal right there. I cannot wait to get my hands on Plain Jane sometime soon and hope you have a great time reading it in June 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha, well I have a lot of time each day on my commute to work so plenty of time for reading. 😀
      Ohh, I think My Plain Jane could potentially be my top read of June (I dunno though, don’t wanna jinx it or anything).
      Thanks Kat, I hope you have an amazing June as well. 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Aah it seems like you had an amazing reading month – I’m so glad you adored Circe, I really did too and it’s so great seeing so much love for it in the bookish community lately! 🙂

    Also, I went to see Hairspray too recently – was it the UK tour production? I thought it was fab; I’d only seen (and loved) the film but it was so much fun on-stage and it has a great atmosphere in the audience too with everyone enjoying themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah I really think I did, and oh Circe was brilliant. There seems to be a lot of hype for it but it’s a beyond incredible book, and yes it’s great seeing it get so much love too.
      I think it must have been, it was only in Southend for a week so I’m guessing it was part of a tour. Oh definitely, people in the audience were laughing and dancing and it was just a great evening overall. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  9. You definitely had a good May! The musical and Fashion exhibit sound like they were a lot of fun! The walk does too since I love walking! Wow you have an exciting trip coming up! I hope you have a wonderful and safe trip and I can’t wait to hear all about it! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Awesome job getting through 12 books this month, that’s unimaginable for me! The fashion exhibit you went to looks so interesting, I wish I was in London so I could check it out. Good luck with all your plans for June, and getting into the housing market although that may take a while 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, and oh I spend about three hours a day on trains so it gives me plenty of time to read. 🙂 It really was, the V&A have some great exhibits, if you ever get a chance I’d recommend going.
      Thanks, and yeah probably gonna take a while but we’ve started that journey which is something. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  11. ya contemporary is perfect for summer!!! AND CIRCE HAS SUCH A PRETTY COVER!!! I’m so glad your month was amazing???? c: c: also kasie west covers are my new favorite aesthetic

    Liked by 1 person

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