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.

Circe

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.

Untitled-4


My WIP

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)

Books

May Recap (8)


May Recap (5)

eBooks


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!

May Recap & Announcement

So first is the announcement, which comes in three parts.

First; I am going to be taking a mini hiatus. It’s only for a week and I’ll be back posting again next Tuesday but the reason for this hiatus is that I have a new job. I’m still working for the same company but it’s a promotion which means more work and potentially longer hours, and I need to take a step back from blogging just for the first week to adjust. I will still be commenting and blog hopping until Friday, because on Friday I am off on holiday and will be unable to comment/blog hop.

Second; I will be launching a new feature in June. This is one I am really excited about and one I have had swimming around in the back of my mind for a while now so I’m interested to see what you all think of it. I don’t want to spoil anything so more information will be upcoming.

Third; I will be shortly deleting my Instagram/Bookstagram account. I’ve been thinking of this for a while, I haven’t posted anything since last November and at the moment I’m not motivated to start posting again so it’s a waste having an account.


Monthly Recaps - This Month

Books I Reviewed

May Recap '17, #1

ARC Review: Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

This was one of my highly anticipated releases for 2017, and it more than lived up to my expectations. Flame in the Mist is a brilliant story, even better than Renee Ahdieh’s debut duology.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley.


Hunted by Meagan Spooner

Another fairytale retelling I couldn’t wait to get my hands on. While Hunted’s plot was slow to develop there was something about the story and the characters that kept me hooked.


A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

After loving the first two books in this series A Court of Wings and Ruin was a highly anticipated release of mine. After reading it I feel like there aren’t enough words to fully describe how much I loved it.


Release by Patrick Ness

Patrick Ness is a favourite author of mine, and while I really liked Release I felt like there was something missing. There’s something magical in his earlier books that there doesn’t seem to be in his newer ones.


The Game of Love and Death by Martha Brockenbrough

I put this book on my to-read list ages ago and kept forgetting it was there. I finally got around to it and am kicking myself for not having picked it up before. The Game of Love and Death is a must-read for everyone in my opinion.


ARC Review: When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

The hype surrounding this book managed to hook me as well. While I enjoyed When Dimple Met Rishi I did think, and hope, the arranged marriage trope would play more into the story.

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley.


The Heroes of Olympus Series

I finished reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series last year, and it’s only now that I finally got around to The Heroes of Olympus books. Why I left it that long I have no idea but there was not one thing about these books I didn’t love.

The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan

The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan

The House of Hades by Rick Riordan

The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan


Top Ten Tuesday

Top Five Cover Changes I Loved and Top Five Covers Changes I Didn’t Like

Top Ten Fairytales I’d Love to See Retold More

Top Ten Mother/Child Relationships in YA Books

Top Ten Books on My Summer TBR List


Waiting on Wednesday

Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts

A Map for Wrecked Girls by Jessica Taylor


Standalone Sunday

Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern


Monthly Recaps - Book Haul

Like last month this is an average haul for May, mainly filled with pre-orders I placed for books a while ago that were finally released and one book I don’t plan to start for a while now because of what I’ve been told about the ending (one guess which book that is). The next two months will have much bigger hauls; basically June and July is when I go bankrupt buying new books.


May Recap '17, #2

Waterstones

Amazon


May Recap '17, #3

Fairy Loot


Monthly Recaps - Last Month

Last month instead of featuring a full(ish) TBR list for the following month I just featured on book that was being released that I was excited to get started on. So that’s what I’m going to do from now on. I don’t stick to TBR lists well, which I feel most people are well aware of, but this is one book I am planning to get started on the second I have it in my hands…


Our Dark Duet

Our Dark Duet by V.E. Schwab

Kate Harker is a girl who isn’t afraid of the dark. She’s a girl who hunts monsters. And she’s good at it. August Flynn is a monster who can never be human, no matter how much he once yearned for it. He’s a monster with a part to play. And he will play it, no matter the cost.

Nearly six months after Kate and August were first thrown together, the war between the monsters and the humans is terrifying reality. In Verity, August has become the leader he never wished to be, and in Prosperity, Kate has become the ruthless hunter she knew she could be. When a new monster emerges from the shadows – one who feeds on chaos and brings out its victim’s inner demons – it lures Kate home, where she finds more than she bargained for. She’ll face a monster she thought she killed, a boy she thought she knew, and a demon all her own.


I have a fairly busy June; I’m starting a new job, going on holiday, introducing a new feature, and celebrating my birthday, and that’s just in the first half of the month. Hopefully everything I have going on won’t affect my blogging too much, but I’m hoping for the best and if it does I’m going to just apologise now.

See you all in a week!

April/May Book Haul

After going over budget for March I was determined to stick to my April budget, to say I failed epically is a massive understatement so for the next month and a half (until the next book I’ve pre-ordered is dispatched at the end of July) I’m putting myself on a book buying ban.

April May Book Haul

This month there were a lot of books I was eagerly anticipating being released; The Raven King, The Rose and the Dagger and A Court of Mist and Fury, the paperback edition of Bone Gap which is an amazing book and one of my favourite magical realism reads, The Star-Touched Queen which I originally read as an eARC from NetGalley but loved so much I decide to buy it in hardcover as well. It’s kind of easy to see how I went over budget this month when taking all of that into account.

Continue reading “April/May Book Haul”