I wish I had a way to start these wrap up posts with something other than: “CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS MONTH IS OVER???” but I don’t so…… Can you believe April is over? I turned another year older on the 12th and I don’t like it one bit 😂
Unfortunately, despite the fact that April was my birthday month, I bought no physical copies of books this month 😢. So let’s just jump into what I read!
I had a very mixed reading month in April. I read a bunch of amazing books, but I also read a few that I had a lot of issues with. I also participated in A Very ARC-ish Readathon where I managed to read 5/7 of the books I mentioned so I’m counting that as a win 🎉🎉 I also dedicate to participate last minute in Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon. It was the first readathon I participated in so I thought I’d do it again. My only plan was to finish Shatter Me which I did, so! I also ended up reading Bone too so again I’m counting it as a win 🙌🏻
The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli – This was my favourite read of the month and just thinking about it now is making me so happy. I read this on my birthday and I wasn’t in a good head space, but this book helped me feel SO MUCH BETTER. I love Molly to pieces and I relate to her so much. I wish I had this book when I was 16 because it would have made me feel so much more comfortable with my body. This book also mentioned the medication I take and seeing it there without any negative connotations was so good. THERE IS SO MUCH WONDERFUL DIVERSITY IN THIS BOOK. GO READ IT RIGHT NOW!!!!!!! TBH, I think I enjoyed this even more than I enjoyed Simon.
love, & you by Gretchen Gomez – I’m sure everyone knows how much I LOVE THIS. You can see my full review here. Gretchen is such a wonderful person and I’m so happy that she wrote this.
Difficult Women by Roxane Gay – This was a wonderful short story collection of feminist stories about women that society would often view as “annoying” or as the title states: “difficult”. I really enjoyed this, but there are A LOT of trigger warnings. Especially for rape. I thought there was quiet a bit of slut shaming too, which didn’t sit right.
The Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins – One of my friends read this last month so I decided to finally get to it and I quite liked it! It definitely wasn’t perfect and it seems a bit strange that I gave this and Strange the Dreamer 4 stars because they’re WORLDS APART but, I read this super quick and I didn’t guess the twist until right before it was revealed. I thought Rachel was a great unreliable narrator.
Daughters Unto Devils by Amy Lukavics – So you all know that I say I NEVER get scared by horror novels….. Well this changed that. This was one of the most unsettling things I’ve ever read. I LOVED IT. I read it at night in the dark and it made the experience so wonderful. This isn’t going to be for everyone, but if you like subtle horror over “jump scare” horror then I definitely recommend it. It is a bit slow and does have an open ending though, but I felt like it worked well. Trigger warnings for: gore, blood, miscarriage
Bone Gap by Laura Ruby – I finally got around to reading this magical realism and I loved it to pieces. I think I’m in love with Roza. It was a bit slow at times, but that’s to be expected with magical realism. I thought it was so interesting. I need to review this one, so I’ll try and have that up soon!
Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – One of the most magical, unique and creative YA Fantasies that I’ve read in a REALLY long time. So incredibly dreamlike, but also super intricate. Took me FOREVER to read, but I loved it. I have a full review here.
bone by Yrsa Daley-Ward – Decided to read this because I grabbed it for free on Kindle. It was a very hard hitting collection of raw and honest poetry and vignettes. Again, lots of trigger warnings though: sexual abuse, homophobia, religion.
The Whole of My World by Nicole Hayes – I read this book because it centered around Australian Football which you all know I’m obsessed with. However, whilst it got some things right it got a lot wrong. Including a relationship between a 15 year old girl and a 30 year old man which made me SUPER uncomfortable. I’m going to write a review for this one where I’ll go into more detail. I’ve heard Nicole Hayes as a newer release out that’s quite good so I’m definitely going to pick that up at some point!
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi – With news of 3 books being added to the series I decided to finally read this and…… it didn’t go too well. There was zero world building and the writing was just so much. I normally love flowery writing, but I feel like this just went too far. I also hated Warner. Oops. TBH, I hated everyone but he was the WORST. I tried to annotate all the time he was non-consensual towards Juliette, but it just got to much. I still don’t know if I’m going to bump this down to 2 stars. The only thing I liked about this was how fast paced it was and the short chapters. Trigger warnings: non consensual touching, possessive & controlling behaviour, suicidal thoughts.
One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus – I was excited for this one, but unfortunately something just didn’t sit right. I felt like it glorified suicide and didn’t really represent bipolar very well either. Of course, I’m not sure about the last one because I don’t have bipolar, but I’ll definitely be pointing out it in more detail when I post my review closer to the release date. I did like one of the female characters, Addy, because she really grows and learns to believe in herself. It was another quick read too.
[★★] The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel – Oh man. Where do I even start this was this absolute trash fire. I think I’ll save my ranting for my full review which will be up soon. Major trigger warnings for: incest, pedophilia, child abuse, sexual abuse, suicide + I could keep going for DAYS.
[★★] Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi – Decided to squeeze this in before midnight. It was from Warner’s POV so I hated it . I did feel like the writing was better though and I actually connected with Juliette a little.
I spent most of this month yelling at my TV during football games 😂 As I mentioned above it was also my birthday, which I stopped caring about after I turned 21. I didn’t really do anything or get any gifts, which I’m totally fine with!! I got lots of sweet messages from people online and my best friend made me a wonderful playlist and that’s all I needed ♥
This next paragraph will contain trigger warnings for mental illness and suicide.
More seriously I’ve been having A LOT of issues with my mental health. I’m sure you all know about 13 Reasons Why and the discussions going on about it. I totally get criticising the show, but I’ve seen way too many people criticise the way others experience their own mental illness. It’s really messed with my head to the point where I’m starting to believe I did/am doing things wrong and that I’m being harmful. A part of me knows this isn’t true, but it’s something I’ve struggled with ever since I was 13. My school told (a suicidal) me that I was just making excuses and being an attention seeker. I’ve been told by my doctor and even the psychologist I saw briefly that my mental illness is very deep-rooted. So you can see why seeing a bunch of people say, discuss and agree that Hannah Baker was overreacting and that people who had similar experiences to her are wrong ect. REALLY got to me.
I am feeling better now and I’m planning on going back to the doctors because if anything it’s made me realise that I’ve been dissociating from my illness for too long and am really not in a good place and I need to do something about getting back on the right track.
End of trigger warnings.
Most of this month has been spent playing The Sims because I’ve been exhausted. I had an appointment with a job agency this month. It’s required that I attend to receive my benefits and it causes me so much anxiety. I signed up to a new job agency, which is for people with disabilities. The woman who’s my case manager seems quite nice (which is good because at my old job agency the woman was AWFUL and again just accused me of using my mental health as an excuse), but so much was thrown at me I just wanted to crawl into a hole and never come out. I’m hoping that it’ll eventually help me feel ready to start working.
Sorry for being so full on and personal in this section! I just wanted to give you all an idea where my head is at because I’ve been a bit absent here and that’s why. It might happen again whilst I try and work on myself and figure things out. I know everyone will understand though and it means a lot ♥
Unfortunately, the majority of this month music-wise was spent being disappointed by some of my all time favourite bands 😂 but I did have a lot of success too! The Maine, in my opinion, released the album of the year. Like always, here’s my favourite songs of the month!!
Thanks to a Twitter thread I listened to A LOT of Australian throwback music this month and of course made a playlist. Australian music from the 00s-10 was THE BEST. This made me feel so nostalgic.
More consistent inconsistency from me this month 😂
- My Favourite Poetry Collections
- Anything But Books Tag
- My Blogiversary Answers to Your Questions (Part 2: Life & Music)
I wish I could say this month will be better, but…..
Would love to hear your thoughts on any of the books I read this month!
What were some of your favourites from April?
I hope you all had a great February and have an even better March.