May was a big reading month for me. I read a total of 22 books this past month. I have always absolutely adored reading, ever since I was a child and I love the book community in general. I thought I’d share reviews for the books that I read and enjoyed during the month, and then list the books that I read but didn’t have any overwhelming feelings of enjoyment or didn’t like at all.
First, I wanted to share how I read books, how I read them, how I choose to keep or donate/give away books, as I get those types of questions frequently. I have always been a bit hesitant on reading on tablets or e-readers, just because my love for collecting books, browsing the bookstores, and inhaling that beautiful aroma that comes from the pages and binding, but last holiday season, Alex bought me a Nook Glowlight 3 and I am in love with it. It’s light to hold, easy to carry around with me when I’m going anywhere, and easy to read at night. Most of the books I read are e-books, and I check them out from the library on my computer, as an instant download. I always have at least 1 physical book that I keep on my night-stand that I read. Unless that book is truly encapsulating, it takes me a bit to read it, simply because it is so much easier to carry around my Nook in my purse.
I don’t typically buy a new book at the store if I’m not familiar with the writer, or haven’t read it before…unless of course, it’s on sale. Buying books brand new can be quite expensive, so I usually like to know that it’s going to be worth the money. I tend to buy my books on sale or at a thrift store. I only have two bookshelves currently, so whenever I buy a bunch of new books, I like to go through my shelves and donate some books that I know I’d probably not read again.
Anyways, let’s get to the books!
This series, at least so far, is so amazing. These are books that I could not put down, and when I had to, all I could think of was these stories and these characters, and the arc is unexpected and compelling. A blend of fantasy and romance, this series will take you to wonderful places, including a world filled with magic, splendor, unique characters. The protagonist, Feyre, is a strong, yet vulnerable, female character, with a mind of her own, and one that I love being in. I already have the next book on hold.
The Hating Game
by Sally Thorne
Another book that was so hard to put down, and that I finished in a day and night. I’ve read a lot of YA novels, or novels that have a strong presence of romance, but never a full blown romance. I just couldn’t get over how great these characters were, and even more than that, the dialogue and description. I was pretty upset when I finished this one, and thought about it for days after. This is a great summer read, just plan to be addicted, especially if you eat up romance.
Educated: A memoir
by Tara Westover
This story is so powerful and inspiring. Tara grew up in a family with a bunch of siblings and a religious and paranoid father, and mother that obliged. She didn’t set foot in to a classroom until she was seventeen. She was never educated at home in maths, science, writing, history, etc., she was educated on making herbal potions and remedies and helping out in her fathers scrap yard, but her interest in education, a proper one, was inspired by her older brother who left for college, much to the dismay of their father. Tara’s story is powerful in that she teaches herself things against the odds of disappointing and losing her family. Her story even brings her to Harvard and Cambridge. A remarkable and well written memoir worth a read.
The Things Around Your Neck
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
My goodness this woman can write. I’m not usually a big fan of short stories. I am always yearning for more, and although I still had those feelings with this book, I felt that each story lasted longer in my mind and heart. Adichie has a strong voice and a powerful prose and an ability to make heart feel warm and break all at the same time. Within these stories, you are immersed in their lives and their experiences and Adichie has such a remarkable gift for storytelling.
We Were Eight Years in Power
by Ta-Nehisi Coates
A great collection of essays written by Coates during the eight years of Barack Obama’s administration. A blend of a biography, history, and a study of racism, these essays are filled with heart and tremendously thought and insight. I’ve been reading Coates’s writing for a couple of years now, and having his words in my hand, in a longer format, kept me learning and growing.
Other books I Enjoyed
The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
Tell No One by Harlan Coben
Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch
Rock My Soul: Black People and Self-Esteem by Bell Hooks
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
My Name is Venus Black by Heather Lloyd
The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge
Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Books that I thought were okay
The Executioner’s Song by Norman Mailer
The Library of Fates by Aditi Khorana
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Grendel’s Guide to Love and War by A.E. Kaplan
This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab
Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde