IT’S MAY Y’ALL. Even though I’ll still be doing blog posts in May, it’s not going to be as hectic, as I finally finished my second year of university and have decided to take it easy after a very packed April.
I’m also doing things a little different with my wrap up this month by getting rid of star ratings. I watched a video on it, and I just feel like I’d rather people go by my actual comments on the books than look at the rating and decide that covers all my thoughts. I still have star ratings on Goodreads for my own personal use, but I’m doing my best to start writing proper summaries of my thoughts from now on!
READING WRAP UP
- Tropic of Serpents by Marie Brennan– a solid follow up to the first book, although there’s a startling lack of dragons in a series about a dragon naturalist! Definitely go into this one expecting a lot more politics than book 1, and Isabella starting a lot of Drama.
- The Elementals by Michael McDowell– such an amazing horror novel! McDowell is so underrated for a writer who wrote predominantly in the seventies and eighties, and it’s so tragic how young he died.
- Princess Jellyfish Volume 1 by Akiko Higashimura– such a disappointing read. It’s really problematic, to the point where it drastically impacted my enjoyment of the plot, especially when I’ve got so many other more recent manga I could be enjoying more than this.
- Fullmetal Alchemist Volume 8 by Hiromu Arakawa– speaking of next tier manga… holy shit. I am so scared of volume 9 and finishing this series, it’s meant so much to me and it’s really helped me immerse myself fully in reading manga.
- Lumberjanes Volume 9 by Shannon Watters– Barney is a precious precious bean and I love them! This is a roller derby volume, and it was pretty great: I’ve been a fan of roller derby since I first watched Whip It, and this volume was super entertaining!
- Lumberjanes Volume 10 by Shannon Watters– wholesome volume where the parents come to visit their kids. I do feel really sad for Molly, but it was nice seeing everyone else’s parents!
- Lumberjanes: A Midsummer Night’s Scheme by Nicole Andelfinger– this was a fun bonus one shot comic. However, it does get very cheesy and it’s whole message is just so obvious that them explaining it was very much unneeded.
- Smut Peddler Volume 1 by Various Authors– this is a fun anthology of smut comics that I super enjoyed reading. E.K. Weaver’s comic is by far my favourite, and it’s only after I realised that it was a one shot about a character in her webcomic!
- Rumple Buttercup BY Matthew Gray Gubler– a very cute children’s graphic novel about loving yourself and finding acceptance!
- Smut Peddler Volume 2 by Various Authors– this wasn’t as good as volume 1, but I still read it really quickly and had a fun time looking at the different art styles and methods of story telling!
- Dream Daddy by Various Authors– there are so many good moments in this comic, it’s so great. Highly recommend if you’ve played the game, and if you haven’t, check it out, it’s real fun! Damien and Robert’s issue was by far my favourite as they were my favourites in the game too.
- Tokyo Ghoul Volume 5 by Sui Ishida– finally, I’m starting to enjoy Tokyo Ghoul. It took a while this volume to actually understand what the hell was happening, but once I did, it really did become something I enjoyed.
- Rick and Morty VS Dungeons and Dragons by Patrick Rothfuss– A decent enough read, although there is way too much dialogue and exposition on every page. The font is really small, too, so reading it was a hassle.
- Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero– this book was actually terrible and I have a whole review discussing my issues and how harmful it is!
- Jackass! Volume 1 by Scarlet Beriko– This is a funny, sweet manga about fetishes and blackmail. It has an age gap romance between an 18 year old and a doctor, and there is some transphobic bullying/weird treatment of bullying being okay if the person has a crush on you, but the main relationship is great, and the MC has a really lovely relationship with his older sister.
- Batwoman: Elegy by Greg Rucka– Chronicles the Alice Batwoman arc from Detective Comics, as well as giving the backstory for Kate. It’s so great having a badass DC hero who is a lesbian, whose storyline also touches on homophobia in the ‘don’t ask don’t tell’ era of the military. Glad I finally got to this!
- Sparrowhawk #5 by Delilah S Dawson– a really disappointing series conclusion overall. I knew I should’ve just stopped reading after the first issue and I wasn’t feeling it, and I honestly wish I had after such a dissatisfying conclusion. Others may enjoy this, but it really wasn’t for me.
- Assassination Classroom Volume 1 by Yusei Matsui— an amazing series starter! Already really moving with a teacher who spends all his time encouraging his students despite being a threat to the entire world they have to kill within the year. I have a feeling this will become a new favourite.
- I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara– really great non-fiction read written by a journalist who played a massive part in the resurgence of talk surrounding the Golden State Killer. You also get some of her life story, and by the end I was almost in disbelief that the author had already died by the time her work was published. I will say it did drag at points, especially in the parts not written by McNamara that had to be finished after she died, but overall a really thorough look into the cases and the victims.
- The Woods Volume 5 by James Tynion IV– this series is- dare I say it- picking up? I still have issues with the representation and the fact that most of the main characters to have died, especially in this volume, were POC while the white characters are in the exact same situation and survive. Will have to see if this carries on.
- Backwards & In Heels by Alicia Malone– this started off strong, and I found out so much about women in film and their presence in the industry since the creation of film in the 1800’s. However, by the end it got so repetitive and formulaic in the way information was presented that I started skimming. This is more of a coffee-table, occasional-read book when you fancy learning more about amazing women! Also, even though there is diverse rep and talk of lack of hiring of WOC and LGBT+ women in the industry, we also get the author praising white women earlier on in the book who took on roles where they did blackface and yellowface, which really dulled down the conversation in the latter half of the book.
- My Love Story!! Volume 6 by Kazune Kawahara– so GOOD. I got so emotional reading this volume, I ended up crying. This is by far one of my favourite manga series, I can’t recommend it enough. It follows tough-but-soft boy Takeo as he enters into a relationship with Yamato, cutest girl in the universe, with the support of his best friend Suna. Truly the PEAK of romantic comedy fiction.
- When the Sky Fell on Splendor by Emily Henry– emotional, hardhitting read about a group of friends who end up with superpowers after discovering a strange alien object. It’s very reminiscent of the film Super 8 in my head, and if you love stories about not only aliens but found families through friendship, highly recommend!
- The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle– I just don’t think Sherlock Holmes is for me. I love the retellings and adaptations, and in theory, I’m invested in the murder mysteries, but I just think Doyle’s prose weighs it down and there’s always that underlying racism I don’t think is appropriate to even attempt to shake.
And my May TBR Jar pick is…. MY HEART GOES BANG by Keris Stainton!
- At the start of the month, I started bingeing Dead Meat videos, a channel entirely revolving around horror. My personal favourite series is the Saw kill count videos, and the movies that changed horror podcast episode James (the host) does with his girlfriend Chelsea (who is amazing)!
- I finally watched season 2 of Stranger Things! I adore Steve, as always, and it was such a solid season (BOB). However I did have an issue with the needless rivalry that festered with Elle towards Max, season 3 better sort that and stop pitting girls against each other for no reason other than because of boys.
- Zoe from Read by Zoe was on FIRE this month with some really great read-a-thon videos! I loved her 24 read-a-thon vlog especially, she read only books she enjoyed growing up and it all felt really nostalgic.
- This is very much a personal one, but my favourite streamer returned to a podcast with the company he used to work for, and it was just…. so heartwarming to watch. I can’t believe he left four years ago! I’ve been watching this company since I was about fourteen, so it was so nice watching this, a long-awaited reunion.
- Kat at paperbackdreams did an amaaaaazing video rant reviewing After by Anna Todd, and I loved it. In general Kat is a top tier booktuber for me, I highly recommend her videos as much as I can!
MUSIC I’VE ENJOYED
- Pressure by The 1975
- Old Town Road Remix by Lil Nas X, Billy Ray Cyrus
- The Black and White and I Spend Too Much Time in My Room by The Band CAMINO
- I Got 5 On It (Tethered Mix From US) by Michael Abels, Luniz, Michael Marshall
- Soldiers (From Stranger Things) by Kyle Dixon, Michael Stein
REVIEWS I POSTED
- Three Romance Reviews: Kulti, The Hating Game and Sunstone
- The Elementals Book Review
- Meddling Kids Book Review
OTHER POSTS I’VE DONE
- Spring Cleaning Book Tag
- Film Friday: Favourite Campus Films
- Getting Through Exam and Essays: ADVICE
- DISCUSSION: Reading at University, and how I do it!
- Music Monday: OMG This Song Book Tag
- Top Ten Tuesday: Rainy Day Reads
- Top Ten Tuesday: First Ten Books I Ever Reviewed on Goodreads