Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog! It is indeed already three days past May, but here I am presenting to you my May reading wrap up. This is also an opportunity for me to show off the books I got to read in my “mini readathon” I arranged for myself during the long weekend last week. Let’s jump straight in!
I’ve been pretty bad this month, in which I bought quite some books! First of all, as usual I picked up some audiobooks for my monthly credit, alongside two free short listens from the Audible Originals. And I was very lucky to be able to buy two books instead of one on a buy two for one credit sale, so I’m very excited to start listening to them all!
I also went to my local bookstore, went straight to its secondhand section, and despite not planning on buying anything, left the store with two secondhand copies that honestly, look like they are newly printed. Elmet by Fiona Mozley is one of the most highly regarded books in the book internet last year, so I’m eager to pick it up. Additionally I found a copy of Bluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke which I’ve been meaning to read for ages after really liking her other book, The Cutting Season.
Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb
In the world of fantasy created by Robin Hobb, ships come to life, pirates hunt down in open waters, serpent-like creatures follow them and eat life people in one bite, and women can rule the world. This first book of the Liveship Traders trilogy is a showcases family drama, the coming-of-age journey of a young man, and how much a human being is willing to risk to achieve what they want.
Overall this first book in the trilogy was a great introduction to the world, the premise and a great starting point. I found the beginning to be a little confusing and slow, and I still feel (like all of Hobb’s other books I’ve read) that this book could’ve been edited down and could do without some plot points Hobb decided to add in. However it’s still a very compelling read, filled with amazing adventures, and I look forward to following all these characters in the second book.
The Idiot by Elif Batuman
When I first started reading the book, I was hesitant about its writing style; and after around 50 pages I was afraid I wouldn’t like our narrator Selin. But I tried to soldier through the first 150 pages and after that I felt like Selin and I were friends, and I actually really enjoyed the writing style once I got used to it. Batuman’s voice is really very unique. She talks about the little things that go through her daily life, but with a unique take that is both relatable, slightly disconnected, but also breathtakingly gorgeous at times. It’s such a different take on what could be just a normal coming of age story.
It is indeed a unique book that not everyone might like. It’s relatable and the characters are lifelike. I personally really enjoyed it, and understand why this book is so highly regarded.
Rainbirds by Clarissa Goenawan
Set in Japan, written by an Indonesian author who lives in Singapore, this book was known as the new emerging Asian mystery novel that is atmospheric with an amazing writing style. What I stumbled upon instead was a main character who is a wet blanket, a mystery that fails to entertain nor intrigue me, and little to no feel as to what rural Japan feels like. The writing style is not the best prose, it’s cold and choppy and its descriptions felt out of place. What I really didn’t like about this book was its characters. I failed to relate or even remotely like Ren. I feel like everything he does is like a stupor and had no real reasoning behind it. Overall I didn’t really feel like he evoked any emotions or even thoughts like a normal person would.
Overall I was very disappointed in this book. I’m very sad that this book got a lot of attention, only for people to be disappointed, or in the least unentertained. There are better Indonesian authors out there people!!! Just not this one unfortunately.
DNF: Blood, Sweat, and Pixels by Jason Schreier
Unfortunately I couldn’t really continue listening to this book halfway through. I found myself not understanding any of the words he said because the games he were talking about weren’t relevant or something I have played before. However I really enjoyed the introduction and his narrative about how every video game is unique and goes through different stages and ways of development. Additionally I also really liked the only chapter of game that I’ve played, which was Stardew Valley, one of my favourite games I’ve ever played. Other than that, unfortunately I was not the right target audience for this book.
I’ve been reading a lot this long weekend. Unfortunately I fell sick throughout Wednesday to Saturday, and so I didn’t do the things I planned on doing, but instead stayed at home, watching TV shows and reading. It was great! I got back into audiobooks and that’s thanks to The Cruel Prince by Holly Black. The narrator Caitlin Kelly does an amazing job at keeping us captivated, and I had imagined it would be difficult for me to keep up with the characters and faerie terms because it’s a fantasy, but I’m really enjoying the story and the characters.
On another note I’m also currently reading another library book that I recently borrowed after around a month of requesting, which is My Sister, The Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite. This is probably a book you all know about, since it’s so famous in the book community for being nominated in the Women’s Prize For Fiction, among other prestigious prizes. I’m loving it so far, and I just cannot stop reading it.
What have you been reading in May, and let us know your thoughts on the books I read! Don’t hesitate as well to link your May reading wrap up posts in the comments, as I would love to read them 🙂 Until next time!