Wrap Up | May 2018

Welcome one, welcome all, to my May Wrap Up. As a month, May has been pretty damn great. We’ve had not one but two Bank Holidays (which has meant glorious 3-day weekends), during one of which I went home to visit family and during the other of which me and Liz had a couple of our friends from university visiting Liverpool. We took advantage of the very lovely (suspiciously so) weather we’ve been having here in England and walked around Liverpool before chilling with a picnic in the park with them on one day and visited beautiful Chester on the other day. It was a very low-key and enjoyable visit and it makes me realise I actually don’t hate summer and hot weather after all – for someone who has vehemently defined herself as a “winter person” for so many years, this has been quite the life-altering revelation.

As far as other fun happenings, I managed to score tickets to see one of my favourite comedians, Dara O’Briain, at the Liverpool Empire whilst he’s touring his latest show. It was SUCH a good night and the show is, as expected, hilarious. I took Liz along and she came away saying she really, really enjoyed so I’m really glad I persuaded her to come and that she enjoyed Dara’s stand-up – I was like 87% sure she would though, to be fair! I also managed to handily coordinate needing to be in Oxford for a work meeting with visiting my friend Ceyda there for a couple of days and getting to see V.E. Schwab give Pembroke College’s Annual Tolkien Lecture (I have a post about that, if you’re interested!). Oxford was, as always, beautiful, and I even participated a little bit in the (frankly ridiculous) tradition of May Morning which resulted in a 4:30am wake-up call so that I could stand at 6am at the foot of Magdalen Tower and hear a choir sing a hymn before walking down the High Street amidst Morris dancers and folks dancing to drums. It was very odd and very Oxford and I’m glad I made the effort to see it because it really is quite something. (I posted about it on Instagram, if you’re curious to see evidence of the weirdness.)

But, enough about my life, how was my reading during the  month? Well, it’s safe to say I pretty much ignored my well-intentioned (but very ambitious) May TBR (apart from 2 whole books from that list) but I did still read a few books, so that has got to count for something, right?

So without further ado, let’s take a look at the books I read in the month of May:

In May, I read a total of 5 books 5 fiction and non-fiction – and were re-reads. This amounted to 2066 pages in total.

In terms of format: 3 were paperbackwas an ARC, and 1 was an e-ARC.

And as for genre, very broadly speaking, 1 was YA fantasywas fantasy, and were YA contemporary.

Onto the books themselves…


The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty

Rating: 4/5
Genre: young-adult; fantasy
Pages: 544
Read: 14th March – 8th May
Challenges fulfilled: Around the Year #47: A book where the main character (or author) is of a different ethnic origin, religion, or sexual identity than your own
Review: To come

Unconventional by Maggie Harcourt

Rating: 4.5/5
Genre: young-adult; contemporary
Pages: 450
Read: 13th – 14th May
Challenges fulfilled: Around the Year #50: A book with a warm atmosphere (centered on family, friendship, love or summer)
Review: “Unconventional felt like it “filled” some of the gaps in my reading experience of Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – it allowed me a peek “behind the curtain” of a fan convention and also encapsulated what it means to be a true fan of something so much so that you want to pour your heart and soul into gathering other fans of the thing into one room to celebrate that shared passion. Also, I’m going to need Aidan/Haydn’s novel Piecekeepers to be a thing because I desperately want to read it and then inevitably become a fully fledged fan of it right along with Lexi.” (full review here)

The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven

Rating: 3.5/5
Genre: young-adult; contemporary
Pages: 335
Read: 14th – 18th May
Challenges fulfilled: Around the Year #10: An author’s debut book
Review: “Fans of The Princess Diaries series by Meg Cabot and the Georgia Nicolson series by Louise Rennison will find a firm friend in The Exact Opposite of Okay’s Izzy O’Neill, a bold and honest heroine who refuses to quietly take the shit that society would shame her for and instead speaks up against the very society that allows such hypocrisy to reign.” (full review here)

Royals by Rachel Hawkins

Rating: 4/5
Genre: young-adult; contemporary
Pages: 296
Read: 19th – 20th May
Challenges fulfilled: Around the Year #17: A book you expect to make you laugh
Review: “It’s kind of like the thrill you might get watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians, The Real Housewives or Made in Chelsea – it’s that weird sort of guilty pleasure which comes from watching rich (and sometimes dumb) people cavort about having larks and being scandalous, even though you know it’s exaggerated or much too dramatic to be actually true. I don’t think it’s a spoiler to say that Royals also combines this frothy fun with many a trope that the average chick flick or chick lit reader will deeply appreciate, principally the Fake Dating trope which we all know leads to something more.” (full review here)

Furyborn by Claire Legrand (ARC)

Rating: 4.5/5
Genre: fantasy
Pages: 491
Read: 20th – 31st May
Challenges fulfilled: Around the Year #14: 4 books linked by the 4 elements: Book #2 Fire
Review: To come

How did your May reading go?
What was your favourite book you read this month?
Please do share in the comments below and let’s chat books!

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2 responses to “Wrap Up | May 2018”

  1. It looks like you had a fantastic May. I miss living in the UK! The warmer weather was always such a treat.

    I’m so happy to see that you enjoyed The City of Brass. It’s one of my favourite books this year and I can’t wait for the sequel. I hope that you have a wonderful June :)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Liverpool is such a nice city to explore in the summer. I know when my mum and I want to do some shopping and get out of Warrington for a bit, we always head to Liverpool instead of Manchester. It just feels more open and welcoming.

    In terms of favourite books this month, mine was The Taste of Blue Light by Lydia Ruffles. I loved how well-crafted and textured it was as a story. Also, I did not see the plot revelation coming but it was written in such a way that felt incredibly natural and it made a lot of sense in regards to the main character and her journey up to that point.

    I also need to read City of Brass and Furyborn at some point. Maybe once I’m able to pick up physical copies I’ll finally get around to reading them.

    Liked by 1 person

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