May Reading Wrap-Up

I rarely do monthly wrap-ups. But, something about having a new(ish) blog space makes me want to fill it with stuff SO, y’all are getting a May reading wrap-up.

Also, May has been a pretty good month for me in terms of reading. Mainly because I turned in my last final of the Spring semester and finally had the time to read all the stuff that I had been meaning to read.

In total I managed to knock out;
9 books (whaaaaaaaaaaat????!)
& 6 graphic novels.

So let’s briefly (hopefully) run through my thoughts on the books

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Dragon Teeth by Michael CrichtonThe beginning of the month I finished up Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton. I loved Jurassic Park, saw the dinosaur on the cover of this one and thought it would be similar. It wasn’t and I was gravely disappointed, and that’s what I get for judging a book by it’s cover. Essentially it was about competitive fossil hunting between two paleontologists and one young man caught in the crossfire. It had it’s moments, but overall, it’s not something I’m going to remember for long.

Black Fortunes by Shomari WillsAfter that, I managed to knock out Black Fortunes: The Story of the First Six African-American’s who Escaped Slavery and Became Millionaires by Shomari Wills. This book was fucking ah-ma-zing. I’ve been trying to read more about African-Americans by African-Americans and this was exactly what I needed. It follows the lives of 6 African-Americans and how they gained, and in some occasions lost, their fortunes and history books “tend to” forget about them. I loved it and might actually buy it and add it to my own personal library sometime soon.

Breathless by Beverly JenkinsBreathless by Beverly Jenkins was my third book of the month and I enjoyed it. I felt like I needed something a tad bit more lighthearted after Black Fortunes and this hit the spot perfectly. It’s the second book in Beverly Jenkins’ Old West trilogy and eventually, I’ll get around to reviewing the series as a whole.

 

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle ZevinBreathless was quickly followed by The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin. I picked it up because it was SFPL’s “Two Cities One Book” selection and because it’s a book about books. I talked about this one of my YouTube channel and you can find that video here.

The Confessions of Young Nero by Margaret GeorgeI’d had my eye on Confessions of a Young Nero by Margaret George since it came out, aaaaaand I even purchased it when it first came out but I didn’t get around to reading it until this month. Usually I absolutely love Margaret George’s writing style…but something about this one was just a wee bit too sluggish. I loved sections of it, but there was a lot that I wish wasn’t there. I do fully intend on buying the second book in the two-part series though.Sourdough by Robin Sloan

Sourdough by Robin Sloan was next up on the grand list. This one I demolished in less than 24hrs. I absolutely loved Sloan’s first book Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore and had been wanting to read this one since it first came out. I absolutely loved Sloan’s writing style for this and I loved that there was romance without it being about romance or relationships or whatever. It was beautiful in a very simple way. It also made me want to learn how to bake bread, but that’s probably never going to happen.

Birthright, Vol. 1 by Joshua WilliamsonAfter reading Sourdough, I decided to embark on a mini graphic-novel binge. I ended up reading the first 6 volumes of Birthright by Joshua Williamson. At first I was incredibly wary of it because the first few panels didn’t really feel like what I wanted to read but once I got over that I was hooked. My favorite part about the series is that it highlights what it could potentially be like for a family whose child has gone missing and returned under a fantasy/otherworldly pretense. It’s weird…but in a very good way. I think I might start collecting these.

Too Big to Miss by Sue Ann JaffarianToo Big to Miss by Sue Ann Jaffarian was a bit of a random grab. Usually I tend to stay away from mysteries, especially mysteries that are part of an epically long series. The whole “who done it” aspect tends to bore me quickly but thankfully, this book had just enough plot twists that I managed to skip it. The writing was funny and quirky and I found myself constantly cheering for the main character, Odelia. I even lol’d a few times. However, I don’t see myself continuing on with the series anytime soon – like I mentioned previously, I’m very wary of mystery series.

Tempest by Beverly JenkinsHowever, reading the first book a series did in some weird way motivate me to finish the Old West trilogy so I finished Tempest by Beverly Jenkins. I absolutely loved Tempest. It had waaaaaay more sex scenes than the previous two, but that’s not why I loved it. I loved it because the main character Regan, definitely reminded me of me. Her ability to go from tomboy to lady in a heartbeat is what got me. Still, I fully plan on doing a series review of the Old West trilogy soon!

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik BackmanI ended the month with A Man Called Ove by Fredrick Backman. It was a freakishly heartwarming story about a grumpy old man, loss, and friendship. I laughed and I cried. It was a bit like The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry where it had one of those slightly unsuspecting endings but it was still insanely nice. I’ve been on a bit of a “grumpy man person” kick lately.

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And that’s the entirety of my reading for the month of May.  It was a freakishly good reading month. I think my favorite book of the month was definitely Sourdough – just because it had so many feel goodnchunks and because I’m horribly in love with books that are set in San Francisco.

What were some of your favorite reads from last month & what do you plan on reading in June?

Hope you have a wonderful day & read a wonderful book!
-Rae

Fresh(ish) Start

If you’re an actual frequenter of this space, you might have noticed that I’ve deleted EVERYTHING. Yup, everything is gone (well, not “gone gone”, but not publically accessible anymore).

I want this space to represent me. I want to be able to point this site as a place where someone can go if they want to get a glimpse into the inner workings of my mind, or if they want to know what I’ve been up to. I want to share my thoughts on books, nature, race, sexuality, life, growing in San Francisco, my grad student struggles, my victories, my failures etc.

I want to share everything, within reason of course. 

Every once in a while I’ll get to talking about my life with someone, and they’ll tell me something along the lines of “you should write a book” or “you should write a series of essays” and I’ve always laughed and said “naaaah” but in the back of my mind that’s always stuck with me. I think the reason why I’ve never attempted is because;

  1. Books cost money (and time) to create.
  2. I’m super long-winded when it comes to writing or talking about anything related to myself. Seriously, a book by me would be damn near the length of the entire Harry Potter series.
  3. People would have to pay for my tome of a book and I’d probably have to issue a ton of refunds and receive a ton of hate mail.
    &
  4. I don’t have any overall messages. I’m still living, fucking up, and succeeding in the same portions I always have, so OBVIOUSLY, I haven’t learned shit.

However, a blog is completely free. Well…not free to me. I have to pay yearly for this space. Which I guess is ok? I mean, hey, I like having the option to have my own URL without the wordpress.com part attached to it and choosing from fancy templates I struggle with using. I get to pretend that I’m ~fancy~.

So, this space. It’s currently empty, but will eventually feature my random short stories/misc. writings, book reviews, lame iPhone photos from my occasional hikes, and just random thoughts about my days.

Let’s see how long this bout of semi-consistant blogging lasts.