May/June 2019 Recap [part one, reading] || Hey… I Did Not Read That Much (+ also a major formatting change!!)

[whips sunglasses off]

Have y’all been wondering where I’ve been???

If you follow me on Twitter, probably not because I’m on there so often it’s unhealthy. Otherwise, I’m sorry aaaaah!!!!

Also, I made a promise to myself that once my final exams ended, I would start up blogging again !!! And they’ve ended for like two weeks and I haven’t posted anything so clearly I’m just 😎 doing pretty well. 😎

(By the way, in case anyone wanted to know: I did pretty well on my finals!!!!! But not as well as I *could* have done for a couple of them, but like… shhhhhhhhh at least they were better than my midterms.)


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M I N I   A N N O U N C E M E N T

So, I’ve decided that because my monthly recaps are usually extremely long (around 2-3k words, which I think is long) sooooo I’m going to be splitting them up into two separate posts!! 

Those would be:

  • Reading Recap (books I read, book haul, tbr, news* (??) etc)
  • Blogging/Life Recap (favorite/top blog posts, posts I enjoyed, news* (??), media consumed, and my Stories.)

I don’t know if you guys LOVE long posts, but hopefully this will make my posts easier to read and more easier to comment on because there isn’t as much of a huge volume of content, I guess? Also, more posts for me to publish, yo.

(But also, I’m unsure because what if no one wants to read my reading recap??? I would probably make my mini-reviews of each book a little longer, but does anyone want to even read those?)

Anyways, this will be my reading (and if I ever start writing, the writing too) section only and not include the other categories I’d normally include.

Also, if you think that I should put my “bookish news” in the reading section instead of the blogging section, let me know!!

(I need advice because I’m indecisive)

AHHHHH I JUST REALIZED I’M GOING TO HAVE TO THINK OF UNIQUE TITLES FOR BOTH OF THESE POSTS

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reading stuff

books I read (may)

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Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston ★★★★★

  • I mean, casey is literally a god for successfully incorporating modern-day humor into a novel so successfully. This was so sweet and I love Henry and Alex so much!! Seriously, I love them!!! I would die for the both of them. The hype was completely correct about this one, and I’m literally so happy about it. (This was a buddy read with Tiff!!) Not to roast her but I almost read the entire thing really quickly. I’m kind of glad I did, because you know what? Something like this must be savored. [gr review to come maybe]

(I just noticed that “successfully” was used TWICE in this but that’s just how successful Casey is.)

How It Feels to Float by Helena Fox ★★★★★

  • I don’t know how to describe this except that it was… deep?? I had never actually read a book with dissociative disorder before, so this was #ownvoices for that representation (the author mentioned dissociating while writing this novel). I think that the writing was really skillful in the way that it was immersive and used the main character as an unreliable narrator, while also keying in the reader the condition of the protagonist. (The main character is also sapphic, I believe, but definitely queer!) [gr review]

The Tiger at Midnight by Swati Teerdhala ★★★★★

  • Alright, I actually finished my goodreads review right before writing this and honestly? It was a mess because I loved this book so DAMN much and !! it’s just so good! I don’t even know how to explain it, but this was addicting and also a cat-and-mouse enemies-to-lovers novel set in a beautiful India-inspired fantasy land. The relationship was done so well, and I read this soooo quick, you guys. [gr review]

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Tell Me How You Really Feel by Aminah Mae Safi ★★★☆☆

  • I am the saddest of all the sads for this one. This will have so much amazing impact on the world, and is so beautiful in concept, but the writing kind of lacked what it needed to properly execute the contemporary (in my opinion)? Some dialogue also seemed pretty unrealistic and overall, this just lacked stylistically. However, I am still 100% here for this romance. Amazing. And the cover. [gr review]

Teen Titans: Raven by Kami Garcia ★★★☆☆

  • Gabriel Picolo? I think you mean drawing god because I love his artwork so so much, especially everything he’s done for the Teen Titans (a franchise I adore). I don’t know what it is, but I think these DC Ink Comics have been lacking for me in terms of plot and substance, which is: so sad. BECAUSE THE ART WAS ACTUALLY REALLY GOOD. Maybe if I read this in a physical format instead of a digital review copy, I would have liked it more?? Haha awkward. [gr review to come]

Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman ★★★★★

  • Just: wow. I love Akemi Dawn Bowman and the way she managed to capture the grief embedded within this novel as well as the loss of your familial soulmate was aching. I loved the portrayal of the sibling relationship so, so much; as someone who is very, very close to my sister, I found alignments within myself and my younger sister to the two sisters within this book. Also, I love Kai!!! AHHHHHHH. [gr review to come maybe]

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As Kismet Would Have It by Sandhya Menon ★★★☆☆

  • This was so adorable and fluffy!! Not even going to lie, I read this mainly so I could just bump up my novels for #yarc2019 because I’ve been, uh, slackin. I really love the cover of this one and how it resembles the When Dimple Met Rishi cover while also being different?? However, I think that this lacked the romantic magic that When Dimple Met Rishi had.

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books I read (june)

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Wilder Girls by Rory Power ★★★★★

  • Hello to queer girls in realistic horror ya novels!!! This was so good and NOT disappointing at all. The writing was atmospheric, almost haunting in a way, and I’m in love with like, all the characters (mainly Reese). Also, this was terrifying and I would like to just [emit scream] into my pillow because of that ending and how much I need to know what happens next. (SEQUEL, RORY? SEQUEL?) [gr review]

Cheshire Crossing ★★★★☆

  • This was more fun than I expected, even though it was off to a not-as-promising start. I’m 99% sure Mary Poppins is a character in this, and I loved seeing the different illustrations featuring Wonderland, Neverland, and Oz!! [gr review]

Going Off Script ★★★★★

  • This is, by far, my favorite Jen Wilde book! (Also, a note: I’ve read the three YA Jen Wilde books in all different formats? Queens of Geek was in a digital review copy; The Brightsiders was an audiobook; and Going Off Script was in hardcover!) I thought that this was so much fun and had one of the best sapphic relationships I could read about. And of course, it Incorporated the fandom so nicely. [gr review to come]

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overall reading analysis (favorite books, least favorite books)

  • For my favorites, definitely Red, White, and Royal Blue; The Tiger at Midnight; and Wilder Girls!! (hey please read all of them thank you)
  • For my least favorites, probably either Tell Me How You Really Feel (sadness looming) or Teen Titans: Raven (MORE SADNESS LOOMING).
  • May average rating: 4.14
  • June average rating: 4.66
  • Altogether average rating: 4.3
  • I rated so many books five stars??? Wow.

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books I read for YARC

  • May: 4/5
  • June: 0/5
Related image
me pretending everything is ok with my yarc challenge and that everything is totally on track like it’s supposed to be

*covers face with hands* Y’all… haha I’ve made some mistakes haha. I was aiming for fifty books total, and so far for June I should be at 25/50.

I’m at 13/50. I’m BARELY at halfway to where I should ALREADY be.

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gr review index

(I’ve already linked to them for the books I read, but here’s an easy index, I guess.)

I’m kind of proud of my Tell Me How You Really Feel review, because I managed to put all my mixed feelings on the page. And I also really love my Wilder Girls review, because Wilder Girls was awesome. (I feel like my review for The Tiger at Midnight could have been better, but it was rambly and I am tired.)

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book haul (may)

I am so, so sorry everyone, but I have just been incredibly, astonishingly lazy with bookstagram (I get tired) and I didn’t take a photo of my May book haul.

The only digital review copy that I received was Teen Titans: Raven from Netgalley, which was actually a SECOND digital copy because the first was from Edelweiss and didn’t even ??? format properly on the Kindle app ?? so that was wild.

The large majority of the books I got in May were from giveaways/gifts

Anyways, the rest of these are all physical:

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(Does anyone else have a thing for several small book covers arranged and formatted together? Because I definitely do.)

Some highlights of this haul:

Going Off Script was from an Instagram giveaway (the FIRST time I won one???) and I was genuinely so shocked, wow. Also, Bloodleaf was an unsolicited arc from HMH Teen, and I received it two months after the publication date, which was esPECIALLY wild because I’ve never received arcs from HMH before??

The Stars We Steal was accidentally sent to me from HMH when I won a giveaway of theirs (the three books on the top row, to the right) and apparently it’s publishing in February 2020 and ALSO sounds absolutely amazing, so that’s kind of wicked?? I also didn’t even get After the Shot Drops at first, which was supposed to be part of the giveaway. HMH Teen’s mail room workers are really doing… something. (I’m kidding. They’re probably very cool.)

We Hunt the Flame was in the Margins BoxMargins Box that I won!! It was their first box, because they only recently started. And everything inside was so cool and I highly, highly recommend checking them out, because they support creators and authors of color. ❤

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book haul (june)

All of the books in this haul were from the publisher, and I also didn’t request any drcs soooo I didn’t get any, lmao. (I NEED TO CATCH UP ON THE ONES I ALREADY HAVE.)

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Some highlights of this haul:

Stronger Than a Bronze Dragon was sent to me as a finished copy from the publisher and !!!! I’m just so HAPPY that I was sent a book that was #ownvoices for my Chinese identity and I reallyyyy need to read this soon so I can review it. Also, are you screaming that Girls of Storm and Shadow was sent to me?? Because I AM. Forever shocked that the publicist granted me the damn privilege, honestly. This is publishing in November and… I’ve read it already (along with the disease, right after I finished rereading GOPAF w/ this other child). Of course.

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tbr

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Ahhhhh I’m not going to be relying too heavily on this tbr, because evidently TBRs DO NOT ALWAYS WORK OUT FOR ME *coughs @ my APAH tbr*

(I’ve already read four (Asian) books in July so!!! If I read all of these I will be at 7/5 which is WHAT I NEED RIGHT NOW FOR #yarc2019 !!!)

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most anticipated books for july

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Spin the Dawn is #ownvoices for Chinese representation and honestly??? It’s a travesty that I didn’t get a physical arc for this from the publisher!!! (I lowkey made it a mission to try and get physical arcs/review copies for all the ownvoices Chinese books and I got Descendant of the Crane & Stronger Than a Bronze Dragon but not this, I guess. Hahahahaha I’m not salty.) I was able to get a digital review copy though!! So I’m not wholly pitiful!

Truly Madly Royally has a PRINCE as a main character and there’s an interracial romance which is prominently featured on the cover and !!! I am in LOVE!!! (PRINCES!!!) What is that multicolored stripe on the left though.

The Rise of Kyoshi is written by one of my FAVORITE authors, so naturally I’m excited to this one. And it’s about a character in the Avatar series!!! So yes x 114. (Also, I don’t think they’re doing arcs for this one which is SAD but I’ll probably borrow it or purchase it.)

How to Hack a Heartbreak is New Adult and this sounds sooooo cute. I love romances where one of the characters is hiding a secret that they’re a part of something Good/Huge (like, someone hiding that they’re royalty, or the scenario from Eliza and Her Monsters). And in this one, the main character is the creator of a popular app!!! So… YES.

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bookish goals

Y’ALL I *just* realized that I can format my goals so much better now that I’m splitting up my recap!!!! THE INADVERTENT BLESSINGS I’VE GIVEN MYSELF (am I God?????)

  • read 7 Asian books (y’all… I need this for my yarc challenge if I’m going to get ANYWHERE) (I WANT MY BADGE!!!)
  • read the arcs I need to (especially The Merciful Crow because… blog tour. and I’m terrified of the consequences)
  • write seven Goodreads reviews! (I’ve already written two for books I haven’t read in July!!)

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S I D E   N O T E

Hey… I love you all and of course, being the responsible blogger that I am, I haven’t responded to *all* of my comments yet, but I’m working on it! Also, I haven’t blog hopped thoroughly for a while, so if you tagged me in something/etc., I promise I will get to it soon!!

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tell me your thoughts 2

Which books did you read in May/June? Do you have any input on what I read in May/June? Did you miss me terribly? Do you like the formatting change? What are your bookish goals & anticipated novels for July?

 

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50 thoughts on “May/June 2019 Recap [part one, reading] || Hey… I Did Not Read That Much (+ also a major formatting change!!)

  1. I missed you terribly and i’m so glad you’re back 😭
    I was in a reading slump from march to june so,,,,, not much in the reading department, but hEY, at least i’ve read 5 books in june *jazz hands*
    Reading this makes me feel guilty i never got to my arc of spin the dawn and i stiLL haven’t read going-off script (which i am so excited to see you loved because jen’s one of my favorite authors kdkskssj)!!!!!! I’m a horrible blogger 😔
    I also don’t know what that random ass stripe is on the Truly Madly Royally cover but it’s ugly oop 🥴

    THIS WAS SUCH A GREAT POST AND I’LL READ ANYTHING,, EVEN IF IT’S 5K WORDS

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OH MY GOODNESS THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! ❤ ❤ Heyyyy I'm proud of you for reading five books!!! That's still a great number.

      Oml it's totally okay that you haven't read Spin the Dawn, I'm not salty at you, I promise!! (I'm just salty at the pub 😉 ). Also, STOP YOU'RE AN AMAZING BLOGGER!!! Listen I have like three overdue arcs/review copies right now; I'm truly Wilding. I'm an unstoppable, chaotic force. The publishers fear and revere me at the same time.

      I KNOW RIGHT, what IS that stripe on the Truly Madly Royally cover??? What. Choice. Did They Make. To Put It There. Confusion all around.

      FSDJHFSDJHF I'M GLAD SOMEONE WILL LISTEN TO MY EXCESSIVE RAMBLING.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. omg I love this post so much! and also I am so here for the formatting change even though I’m fine with one or the other! ah same, even though I’m kinda on track for yarc, I thought that I was acing the challenge, but apparently.. I’m hanging on. ugh i could be doing so much better! still haven’t read DOTC but ahh I really plan to this month! spin the dawn did NOT disappoint–i would consider it a fave of this year! I’m also so so excited for wicked fox and wilder girls. those two books just sound soo amazing, like I am literally vibrating to read them (weird way of putting things but that is how I feel)

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    1. Ahhh, thank you, Caitlin!! Lmaoooo… I thought that five Asian books per month would be an okay goal to try to reach, but, I guess, not??? I really overestimated my ability, LMAO.

      Oooh I hope you love DOTC (pleaseeee update me!!) and I’m so glad to hear that Spin the Dawn is a good read! It’s been really hyped by so many readers, which makes me so happy to see.

      WILDER GIRLS IS SO SO SO GOOD I PROMISE YOU. Also, I’m so excited for Wicked Fox toooooooo– it sounds too good and I’m AFRAID of opening it.

      We all vibrate for our anticipated books, okay???

      Like

  3. Okay so I ABSOLUTELY LOVED The Merciful Crow. Really liked Wilder Girls and I am glad to hear that The Tiger at Midnight is a fast read, because for some reason I have super low expectations and have been putting off reading it forever now.

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    1. Oh, that makes me so happy to hear!! The Merciful Crow is one of my most hyped— and that cover… *gorgeous* *chefs kiss*

      Yes!! Wasn’t Wilder Girls just everything and such a fast-paced one?

      Omg, I really hope you like Tiger At Midnight!! I know there have been a couple of mixed reviews, but I personally read the last 70% all in one sitting, sooooo. Personally, I really loved it!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I have both Going off Script and Red, White and Royal Blue on my TBR, so it’s great to hear you loved both! I’ve had my eyes on Tell Me How You Really Feel because of amazing reviews, so I’m sorry to hear it didn’t make it for you! (I’m not so sure I’m picking it up). And I’m reeaaaally excited to read spin the dawn – it looks so awesome ???

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oooh great: all I can say is that you will almost DEFINITELY love RWRB, so many others have loved it despite the huge hype!! Going Off Script was so fun, and it lacked some of the negative factors Jen Wilde’s past books had for me, so that was very cool.

      Let me know what you think about Tell Me How You Really Feel! I think I’m very peculiar with my writing sometimes, sooo you may like it!

      I hope you get to pick up Spin the Dawn soon!! So many people I know absolutely ADORED that book. ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  5. ju!! i missed you and your posts so much omg. i’m glad you did great in your finals and that you’re back! you read so many good books and like, how do you have a GR review for pretty much every single book you read? i feel like a travesty now lmao.
    i loved summer bird blue & really enjoyed rw&rb, and i’m glad you did too! i can’t wait to read going off-script now, and i’m also scared to read tell me how you really feel. i’m dying over the fact that you get to read girls of storm & shadow, and i can’t wait for your thoughts! also on spin the dawn & stronger than a bronze dragon.

    i’m sorry this comment is so long but yeah i missed you & your posts, and i can’t wait for part 2!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THANK YOUUUU TAASIA it’s good to be back and I’ll be able to read your posts more regularly!!!!!!! so YAY for ME. (okay but most of my gr reviews are like… three sentences, LMAO. I just say “review to come” and then BOUNCE.)

      lmao I’m glad you liked SBB and RWRB!! Also IM WAITING FOR WHAT YOU THINK AFTER GOING OFF SCRIPT. it’s so sweet and just a Solid contemporary!! I knowwww I’m dying that I got to read gosas too!!! (the publicist blessed me what 😩) (also praying 4 u to get an arc!!!!) 🥰 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  6. HI HELLO so happy you’re back and I’m always here for more content and more posts from you so do as you feel will be best for you, two or ten thousand parts I WILL READ IT ALL ALWAYS ❤
    I loved Red, White and Royal Blue, such a wonderful read ahhhhhhh and it made me laugh a whole lot as well haha. Can't wait for you to read Wicked Fox, I really liked this one and ahhh I'm so excited about Spin The Dawn, I hope to get a copy soon!!
    Happy reading and happy July, sending you tons of love ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. AWWWW MARIE AHHHH THANK YOU SO MUCH BLOGGING QUEEN 😭💞💞💖💖 Yess, RWRB is the absolute *peak* of millennial humor in books. Honestly, still shocked at how well Casey McQuiston wrote the humor in there!! Like WHAT!! I strive to be as great as that!!

      ONCE I READ WICKED FOX I WILL DEF LET YOU KNOWWW!! ❤️ And if *you* read Spin the Dawn, I’ll be looking out for your review/thoughts!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. ju, just to let you know: i LOVE reading mini reviews for books, because they totally let you know the feel of each book even in a small paragraph and i’ll gladly read those, so i’m 100% supportive of this format!
    i’m glad you enjoyed summer bird blue so much! i’ve been meaning to pick this one up since forever, and it makes me feel even more motivated when i hear praise for it.
    also i hadn’t heard of the new jen wilde book yet and now i have ANOTHER one to add to my ever-growing TBR of new releases. i’m hyper but also sad at the same time?? i really liked how queens of geek was so positive and adorable, so i’m expecting the same feels for this one, hahah.
    wishing you luck on your YARC reads this month! 👊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YESSS that makes me so happy to hear ❤ ❤ I love mini-reviews toooo lmao. OOH YES READ SUMMER BIRD BLUE, IT'S SO EMOTIONALLY IMPACTFUL AND JUST, GOOD.

      Yayyyy okay if you liked Queens of Geek, you'll really really like Going Off Script because it had similar themes but like, BETTER. I hope you have a great July ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Welcome back! So happy to read your posts again ❤ I’m glad to hear that you loved Going Off Script, as I really liked it as well, Jen Wilde has become one of my favorite authors 😍 I’m also always happy to read your wrapup posts in whatever format they may be 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Caro!! ❤ ❤ YES isn't Jen Wilde amazing? The only issue that I used to have was that her messages weren't that subtle, lolol, but I love love love the way that she writes contemporaries?? She makes them SOO relatable? (Ahhh, thank you so much Caro, that makes me so happy!!! ❤ )

      Liked by 1 person

  9. “incorporating modern humor into a novel so successfully” is the BEST and the most accurate description as to why i loved rwrb SO MUCH oh my god. i literally reread it after i finished reading it. can you believe we have the privilege of reading more casey mcquiston books in the future? unreal

    nice try, jane sinner had a lot of mixed reviews the last time i checked it on gr BUT i loved that book. the humor is 10/10.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I honestly aim to be like Casey when I write??? they INSPIRE me to write humor into my books, when I haven’t actually written a thing for two years. wild. can you believe that their book RWRB published while we were alive??? AMAZING!!! I cannot wait for the next casey book, which I heard is f/f!!! YES

      omg yes Nice Try, Jane Sinner’s humor was just so so so good and I didn’t realize that it had mixed reviews!! but when I read it… *chefs kiss* I laughed out loud so many times. I’m definitely going to reread that, ahhh!

      Liked by 1 person

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