Before I wrap up the books I read in May, I want to share the link to the Black Lives Matter cardd, which has so many links to petitions you can sign, useful information, and organisations that you can to donates to in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Please make sure you’re continuously uplifting Black people’s voices and the BLM movement in every way possibly can. Listen to what Black people are saying, sign petitions, educate yourselves, and talk with your friends and family at home about being actively anti-racist.
In May, I read six books for Asian readathon, hosted by ReadwithCindy. Six is a bit of a dip from the 13 I read in April (I don’t know what happened there to be honest???), but I found a couple of new favourites, so I’m pretty pleased with that.
Wicked As You Wish // 3.5 stars // Audiobook
This is the first Rin Chupeco book I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading and it was such an adventure. I loved the magic system and the writing style really whisked me away into another land.
I knew this book was going to have a squad team-up (which I’m always a sucker for) and it DELIVERED on all fronts. We had witty dialogue, new friendships, and the squad saving each other’s lives.
I’m definitely going to be reading the sequel because this book ended with lots of questions left unanswered and I need those answers. I also love this squad and can’t wait to read more of them.
This Time Will Be Different // 3 stars // Audiobook and hardback
I read this partly on audio and partly in hardback and really enjoyed it. CJ’s fight against systemic, historical racism is narrated in a raw, nuanced manner that really shows how deep ingrained in society microaggressions are. It was empowering to watch CJ find a cause that she wanted to fight for and then take action.
This book has a main m/f romance and a secondary f/f romance. The plot is straight-forward and captivating and challenges racism at every turn.
There were times when I think the dialogue could have been clearer and there was a lot of drama between CJ and Owen that perhaps could have been toned down, but on the whole I enjoyed this and I’m really glad I read it.
The Kiss Quotient // 4 stars // Audiobook
I loved this SO MUCH. Both Stella and Michael were brilliant characters and I loved how much they grew to care for one another. The romance was captivating and addictive; it’s part of the reason I read this book in less than two days.
The narrative was incredibly readable and the dialogue was fun. This book opens up a lot of detailed discussions about autism, which I really enjoyed reading. The author is also autistic, so it’s own voices for that rep. Consent is continuously asked for and not assumed between the two main characters, and the author emphasises how important this is in close romantic and sexual relationships.
This is the first Helen Hoang book I’ve read, but I’ll definitely be reading The Bride Test and other future releases she has coming out because this was just so good and I want more of her writing and characters in my life.
The Black Tides of Heaven // 4 stars // Audiobook
I’ve been meaning to read this book for at least a couple of years now, and I’m so glad I finally did because it’s FANTASTIC. J.Y. Yang’s writing style is incredible and I was transported by the narrative and world-building. The audio narration for this is truly excellent so I’d definitely recommend it.
The world building in this book is so unique; it revolves around the ‘slack’ which is sort of like the atmosphere, energy, and elements surrounding people.
Gender is also explored in a way that I’ve never seen before in a novel. The main characters, and other characters in this world, grow up as non-binary until they decide to choose their gender. The author is also non-binary so the book is own voices.
I loved this story so much and I honestly can’t wait to continue on with the Tensorate series. I’ll definitely be listening to them on audio.
An Ember in the Ashes // 4 stars // Audiobook
This has been on my TBR for about FOUR YEAS, and I’m SO happy I finally read it for Asian Readathon 2020. It surpassed all my expectations.
The plot was action-packed, exciting, and water-tight. I know lots of other YA fantasies have used the ‘academy’ setting, but this still felt really unique.
I loved Laia and Elias and felt really connected with their characters. I really liked the way Laia gradually discovered her inner strength and I loved some of the final scenes between her and Elias. I liked the hints of magic and the supernatural and I’m keen to see how the second book develops this.
Ms Marvel volume 7 // 3.5 stars // Paperback
This was another great volume in the series, with Kamala dealing with corrupt politicians, RPG villains, and friendship challenges.
This series is so good that I’m both keen to carry on with it and reluctant to finish it because I don’t want it to be over.
And I finally, finally reviewed Yes, No, Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed.
In May, we celebrated my Mum’s birthday while still under lockdown. No restaurants or shops were open (the majority still aren’t) so we baked her a cake, make a special birthday dinner, and tried to do as many fun indoors things as we could.
She loved her presents and ended up having a nice, relaxing day, which I was really happy about.
Since lockdown was still fully in place, we didn’t really go anywhere in May, but we did have a socially-distanced outdoor picnic with some neighbours on the early May bank holiday. It was a really sunny day and my Mum, bless her heart, baked me some vegan scones. (There were so good, I was emotional.)
I also started watching a couple of new TV shows in May, Money Heist and 2Gether. Money Heist is a Spanish show about a group of people that team up to rob the Spanish Royal Mint. 2Gether is a Thai BL drama about two guys in high school who start a fake relationship, but gradually start to fall for each other for real.
These shows are very different but equally addictive. 2Gether is a romantic show, so much more soft and cute, whereas Money Heist is more gritty and tense.
I’ve also been LOVING watching Killing Eve in May, and the final episode of the series JUST aired a few days ago. Needless to say, I’m still not over it.
What did you read in May? Have you read any of these books?