Hi everybody, and welcome to my May wrap up!
I hope all of you are doing well in these weird times and you and your family and friends are all still safe and healthy? I’m still good, keeping safe and staying healthy and of course, still staying home and spending the time reading lots of books and getting some blogging done (I have posts ready until July – who is this person?)
So anyway, here’s what I’ve been up to in May!
Fallen by Tenaya Jayne
This book was a pure cover buy. Ok, the blurb also mentioned some hate-to-love romance thing going on, so that had something to with it too. But this book was not for me. Because the writing felt a little chaotic and too fast-paced and just… not very good? And also, this is a spin-off of another series, but supposedly you could read it separately… and you kind of could, but there were so many characters it became confusing to me anyway.
Rating: 2 stars
Bonds of Brass by Emily Skrutskie
Are you looking for an action-packed story of galactic intrigue and badass space pilots? Or a tense exploration of loyalty and bloodright? Do you love Star Wars but wished it was more gay?All I’m saying is if you like fake dating, mutual pining, “there’s only one bed”, forbidden romance, secret princes, angst, a weaponized umbrella, hiding in a dumpster, legendary knights in powersuits and “Moments” in a river… then definitely check out the space opera Bonds of Brass!
Rating: 4,5 stars | Full Review
Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
I LOVE SQUAD 312!! I loved this sequel just as much as I loved the first one, and maybe even more so, because I fell even more in love with this wonderful squad. That ending was just pure cliffhanger-hell and I can’t believe the authors did that to us. Also, I need my fave Finian to be on the cover for the next one, pretty please?
Rating: 5 stars
Felix Ever After by Kacen Callendar
Felix Ever After was such a powerful story, dealing with transphobia and the gender binary about a trans boy who one day receives transphobic messages from an anonymous student and decides on a plan for revenge. I loved Felix and his gang of friends, but especially Ezra, who is the best, most supportive friend ever. This is one of those books that should be mandatory reading in all schools, but also just by everybody.
Rating: 5 stars
The Ballad of Songbirds and snakes by SUzanne Collins
The long-awaited and much-talked-about Hunger Games prequel is not your typical villain origin story. The worldbuilding is exceptional and an intriguing look into the beginning of the Hunger Games. The writing style is a brilliant choice befitting the story and main character. But the main character is also deeply unlikable, unrelatable and hard to root for. Overall, it’s a very gripping, but also very uncomfortable story. But then again, would it be right if this story did not make the reader feel uncomfortable?
Rating: 3 stars | Full Review
Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco (re-read)
I re-read this story before diving into the sequel, because it’s been a while since I read it and I have goldfish brain. And I still really enjoyed this story, and most of all Audrey Rose and Thomas Cresswell, who have the cutest banter.
Rating: 4 stars
Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco
I loved the eerie vibe this sequel once again had, and I loved that I could not predict the villain at all (I kind of did in the first book). The pacing was a bit off in the middle, but overall I highly enjoyed it. And I’m still firmly on the Audrey Rose and Thomas train!
Rating: 4 stars
Top Ten Tuesday
QUOTE IT WEDNESDAY
I actually discovered a lot of great new songs this month!
IU ft Suga – eight
This is such a beautiful, powerful song. Definitely my favorite May song.
Day 6 – Zombie
Well, this song felt very fitting to the state of the world and I’m sure it represents how many of us are feeling right now.
TomorrowXTogether – Can’t You See Me
I don’t know these guys so well as I’ve only heard one other song by them (need to check out more) but I really like this song and how it sounds pretty cheery and happy at first, but the lyrics are actually not that happy at all.
Agust D – Daechwita
My BTS bias released his second solo mixtape and the lead single is such a bop.
Monsta X – Fantasia
This only released in the last week of May, but I’m counting it in as I love it and really, I have yet to come across a Monsta X song I don’t like.
I watched a few things this month that I really enjoyed:
HOTEL DEL LUNA
Oh hey, an IU song and now also an IU kdrama this month! Honestly, I was a bit hesitant to start Hotel del Luna at first, and I’m not sure why, because when I finally picked it up, I was hooked from the very first episode. THE AESTHETICS! This is just such a BEAUTIFUL kdrama. It’s about a hotel that’s actually only visible to the dead. The guests are ghosts who come to fulfill their last wishes before moving on the afterlife. It is run by Jang Man Wol (IU), who has been the owner for over a 1.000 years and is tied to the hotel as punishment for something she did. But everything changes when the human manager Gu Chan-Seong starts to work for the hotel.
The Ghost Bride
I’ve been intrigued by this Netflix show for a while now, and when I saw it was only 6 episodes I thought why not and dived right in. Even so, I still have an episode to watch so I can’t speak for the ending yet. But I enjoyed this show so far – it is not perfect as it is a little cheesy and the acting is not always great, but it’s a fun watch anyway. It’s about a girl who gets asked to be the ghost bride to this boy who was murdered. She makes a deal with him that she will find out who murdered him if he will help her father, who is ill and halfway to the otherworld. She then gets help from a heavenly guardian and of course drama and adventure ensues. It’s based on a book, so I need to check that one out as well!
THE HALF OF IT
The Half of It is a coming-of-age film about a girl named Ellie Chu, who makes money by writing homework papers for her fellow students. Then one day, a boy named Paul asks her help writing love letters to his crush, Aster. Only problem is that Ellie also has a crush on Aster.
This Netflix movie was so hyped that there was no escape from it in its’ early release days and for good reason! This was such a beautiful movie and the messages behind it, the cinematography, the acting were all spot-on. I especially loved watching the growing friendship between Ellie and Paul.
For me, May has been pretty much the same as April and the last half of March, as in I’ve still been staying home, I’ve still been technically unemployed and I still haven’t seen any of my friends or family. And to be honest, while I didn’t have that many issues at first, this month it’s definitely been getting more difficult. This also has to do with the fact that, in Belgium, things are slowly getting back to normal. The stores have reopened and companies have reopened so non-essential workers are allowed to go to work again. But I’m still at home at least until the end of July (because my company organises international courses, which are of course still cancelled at least until fall and there’s just not enough work right now). So it’s been challenging to watch everybody around me pick up their lives again, going to work, while I’m still stuck at home with my worries.
Of course, I know I’m not the only one and that I’m lucky that I am healthy and I do still have a job to look forward to starting again so I can’t complain too much either. And of course, being home still has the added benefit of being able to get lots of reading done!
Things that made me happy this month:
- I’ve been happy for the health of my friends, family and me so far. I’ve been happy about all the little projects I got to do in the house and such now that I’ve had the time. And I’ve been happy about all the books I managed to read and TV I got to watch.
THINGS I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH:
- Hopefully, for life to be able to return back to normal.
- Stray Kids comeback!