May in Review // A Month of Reading ALL the Things
The temperatures are beginning to rise here in Northern California and I am already wishing for Fall to arrive. I honestly cannot believe that it is already June! WHERE IS THE TIME GOING?!! And more importantly, can I harness this shift in time-space so I can travel to the future and read the last book in the Empirium trilogy? I really just need some answers here.
May was another meh month for me in all regards but my reading life. I’m still on medical leave from work and doing my best to focus on my health despite a lot of IRL stressors, but honestly, my reading slump went away! I read so many books in May and enjoyed all of them??? What is this sorcery? It feels really good to have one thing going for me right now and I hope it’s a sign of things improving overall in June.
On the blog & hiatus front, I wound up decreasing my posting frequency to four posts and temporarily removing Wednesdays from the rotation for the time being. They will be back once I’m able to plan out that extra content consistently again. But I’m hoping to start blog hopping again this month! I’ve missed reading your posts!
I read ten books in May, and I think it is safe to say the slump has finally left my body! It definitely is nice to fill my time with reading because I adore it so much, and I was fortunate to read a good number of books… and I enjoyed all but one of them! The last few days of May I haven’t really felt like reading but I am crossing all fingers that it is not Slump 2: The Electric Boogaloo.
✨ As a quick reminder, I’ve done away with star ratings on my blog reviews. You can read more about my reasoning in this discussion post on ratings systems, but you can find my ratings on Goodreads!
My Favorite Read of May
This was such a tough decision for me because I read a couple of amazing books in May! But when I think about the book that completely enraptured me while reading and infected my mind afterwards, it has to be Keep This to Yourself by Tom Ryan!
The writing is almost lyrical, which is not something that I typically equate with mysteries. I was instantly swept away into this story where Mac struggles to let go of his pain. But after he finds a clue from Connor on the night he died, Mac embarks on an adventure to uncover the truth no matter the consequences.
This book is a testament to friendship and shows how grief is experienced differently by everyone. But it is also a twisty mystery that will keep you guessing until the last page! Seriously, I thought I had it pegged three times and I was so wrong. And as a person that is rarely surprised, I loved that.
ARCs/copies from author or publisher are noted below by an asterisk *
- Unravel Me (Shatter Me #2) by Taherah Mafi – I’m essentially the worst because it’s been a month since I read this and still haven’t reviewed it. I know that I enjoyed it but have some complicated feelings with the romance depiction.
- Ignite Me (Shatter Me #3) by Taherah Mafi – I’m essentially the worst because it’s been a month since I read this and still haven’t reviewed it. I remember really feeling satisfied (and a little icky because of my feelings with the romance in this trilogy) with how things ended, but that’s about it. I don’t think I will continue with the second trilogy.
- * Keep This to Yourself by Tom Ryan – this book cured my reading slump that I’ve been in essentially all 2019, friends. It’s beautiful and shocking and my favorite read of the month. | 📖 Read my full ARC review
- Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber – It took me two years to pick up this book on my shelf, and I devoured it in one sitting. This book is magical and perfect and I loved every minute of reading it. I think if you are a fan of strong sibling relationships this is a book you shouldn’t miss! | 📖 Read my full review
- Legendary (Caraval #2) by Stephanie Garber – The magical game of Caraval is about bravery and sacrifice, and friends let me tell you that the magic isn’t yet over as there are some debts to be paid. This world is so magical and ethereal that it is easy to get swept up into the narrative, and this installment of the trilogy lives up to its predecessor and shatters all notions of Middle Book Syndrome! | 📖 Read my full review
- Finale (Caraval #3) by Stephanie Garber – A solid end to a truly magical trilogy. And I am a little conflicted here because while I really enjoyed Finale, there were some things that never got explained that kind of bother me. But I am primarily here for these characters and was swept into this heartbreaking, beautiful, and magical end; a satisfying conclusion to a stellar trilogy. | 📖 Read my full review
- Furyborn (Empirium #1) by Claire Legrand – This was a re-read for me to refresh my goldfish memory on the world before diving into my Kingsbane ARC. I still enjoyed the story and have so many questions but definitely still struggled a little with the dual POV narrative style. Also I legit wound up skipping the trials chapters because they bored me the second time around. (Note while my review is an ARC review from 2018, I have since purchased a finished copy. This is why it isn’t listed as an ARC re-read.) | 📖 Read my full ARC review
- * Kingsbane (Empirium #2) by Claire Legrand – Let me start by saying that it’s been over two weeks since I have finished reading my ARC and still feel betrayed, heartbroken, and feverish for answers. While the POV narrative style is still difficult for me personally, I really enjoyed the character growth and plot developments in this world a lot. And considering that Jess and I are still discussing theories about this damn book, that’s saying a lot. | 📖 Read my full ARC review
- Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy #1) by Emily A. Duncan – This book was a freaking struggle to get through, friends. I buddy read it with Taylor and Bex, and the only reason that I didn’t DNF this book was that Taylor said it picked up after chapter 25. And while that definitely is true, I still didn’t like this book. The pacing is incredibly uneven and the middle of the book was so arduous to read; ultimately I feel it has a lot of untapped potential in the story that wasn’t realized. I won’t be doing a full review of this book because I’m not a fan of how the author’s dismissed the feelings of her audience on Twitter.
- * Girl Gone Viral by Arvin Ahmadi – I loved this book so much! I found it to be fast-paced and engaging, with a good balance between making me think and being about the characters. I wouldn’t call this quiet YA at all, but the characters do each deal with their own internalized struggles of wanting to be good enough and succeed. I highly recommend this one and don’t think that the technology is too advanced to deter people that typically shy away from science fiction. | 📖 Read my full ARC review
DNF – Did Not Finish
Total Books Read: 10 | Total Pages Read: 4,448
As you can see, I definitely went full-on YOLO in May with my reading material, most everything that I read was a mood read for once. Also, it was a fantasy-heavy month, which means that I’ve switched gears back to science fiction for the time being!
Total Books Read in 2019: 36
Goodreads Reading Goal: 52
Awesome Community Posts
I’m definitely not back to my blog hopping mojo, but I was a lot better in May with reading posts that I saw come across Twitter when I had the energy. (AKA I saved a bunch of tabs.) Here are a few posts that really spoke to me last month!
- Kelly @ Another Book in the Wall had a fantastic discussion about what makes YA books so popular!
- Ally @ Ally Writes Things called me OUT with this hilarious post on the different types of book reviewers!
- Rain @ Bookdragonism put together a FANTASTIC guide with all the information a book dragon needs to get started on Edelweiss!
- Siobhan @ Siobhan’s Novelties talks about the stress of reading can actually kill our love of it.
- Cat on the Bookshelf put together a great guide to hashtags on instagram for book bloggers that is INCREDIBLE!
After silently working on my Patreon and silently doubting my worth, I finally launched my Patreon page on May 31st! 🎉 You can find my Patreon here, but please do not feel obligated to join! Your support here on my blog is genuinely enough for me, but here’s a little bit of information about why I launched my page.
- I’ve been suffering from health problems for the last few months that have left me unable to work my fulltime job, and my blog has been the one light that I (sometimes) have the energy for. I wanted to explore ways to offset my lack of an income that are within my capabilities right now.
- I believe that book bloggers deserve to be compensated for the work that we do.
- The money from my Patreon foremost will be used to offset the costs of hosting my blog, ship books for Flapping Pages out while I am not working, and of course, fund my bookish addiction.
I will not stop blogging and creating free templates and guides for you here on Reader Voracious Blog! All of my guides and templates here will continue to be free to access, and future yearly editions of the Book Blogger Spreadsheet Template will always be free.
So what will my Patrons get?
Depending on the level of support my Patrons choose, they will receive:
- Early access to most of my blog posts on the Patreon platform!
- Voting on a monthly post topic that will be seen here on Reader Voracious Blog (referred to as Patreon Post).
- Exclusive discussion posts.
- Exclusive deep-dive tutorials and video guides that take my free guides here to the next level (for instance, a video demo on Edelweiss filters is in the works!).
- Your name and/or logo listed on my Patreon Supporter Page here on the blog.
- Ability to request a custom spreadsheet from me.
- & possibly more down the road!
If you sign up to support me on Patreon, know that the charges are made on the first of every month, so the first time charges are made will be on July 1. I will aim to have 1-2 exclusive Patreon posts per month at least, starting with the above-mentioned video this month!
Thank you, everyone, so much for visiting, liking, commenting, and sharing your bookish thoughts with me last month! Words cannot express how much this community means to me, and I appreciate all the love that’s been sent my way as I deal with health issues.
I hope that you had a fantastic May, let me know how your month went in the comments below!
Let’s go on another adventure together!