It’s just over five months into 2020 and it already feels like a whole decade. I don’t know what I’d do if it weren’t for books to distract me. I’m super excited for my summer reading line up. Most of my books were picked for some June readathons, but whatever I don’t finish I’m planning to read in July. Check out my Summer TBR.
I decided to not give a star rating to most of books I read for about five or six months to see what happened. I can honestly say I’ve enjoyed my reading experience this year much better because of it. I’m trying to choose what books I read more intentionally by seeking out female, POC, and queer authors. Sometimes that means stepping outside my comfort zone. I don’t want to feel like I’m having a bad reading year if rate a book I wouldn’t normally go for 3-stars. This current system takes that pressure off and I’ve discovered some really unique reads so far.
My ratings for this wrap up:
- I loved it.
- I really enjoyed it.
- I liked it.
- It was okay.
- Did not enjoy.
- DNF (Did Not Finish).
books i read
sorted by jackson bird – I really enjoyed it. this is a memoir about a transgender male who talks about his transition and thing he’s learned since. it was witty, insightful, and refreshing. i listened to audiobook and i highly recommend it that way.
the deep by rivers solomon – I liked it. This novella is too short to sum it up so check out the link to my review.
a conjuring of light by v.e. schwab – It was okay. I have a love-hate relationship with this series. But not the author. I love the author. I felt like there was a lot of meandering and too slow build up, but the finale was pretty epic albeit somewhat cliché. As a series overall, I felt like there was more potential to utilize the Four Londons. If you really like the characters, you will like this series.
rogue protocol by martha wells – I loved it! I’m super biased because of my obsession with The Murderbot series but just trust me.
in the dream house by carmen maria machado – It was okay/I liked it. this memoir was incredibly hard to listen to. it’s about a queer latina who chronicles her abusive relationship with another woman. the writing is so haunting and lyrical which is what makes it stand out as a memoir. i could never write a work of non-fiction this immersive.
magic for liars by sarah gailey – Did not enjoy. It started off promising but it was pretty boring in the end.
escaping from houdini by kerri maniscalco – I really enjoyed it. I already talk about this in the review but I was set up for so much disappointment by other people’s reactions to this book but it ended up surprising me. I thought it was very human of Audrey to have doubts about her feelings for the only guy she’s every loved when she’s seventeen.
chain of gold by cassandra clare – I loved it! Review to come.
asian readathon wrap up
the memory police by yōko ogawa – I liked it. This book is what I can only describe as a “quiet dystopian”. It’s less plot-heavy and more day-to-day life. I personally liked that the events unfold introspectively even though I prefer fast-paced speculative fiction over a literary tone.
want by cindy pon – dnf. I’m sorry! This is an important book with important rep. But I was promised a found family trope. There was potential for all the side characters but there were no descriptions (besides the fact that they all wore black) or change in dialogue tone.
patron saints of nothing by randy ribbay – I really liked it. THIS WAS SO GOOD. Not to mention timely. I need to do a full review on it, but it’s about a Filipino-American teenager who learns of his cousins death and decides to travel there to find out what happened. He learns so much about his “mother country”, such as the police brutality and the current president’s (very real) war on drugs. Review to come.
Over on Fanna’s blog is a guest interview with author of The Henna Wars, Adiba Jaigirdar. She talks about sexual orientation topics in South-Asian stories.
Rafaela @ The Portuguese Bibliophile discusses How to Be More Productive At Home Right Now
This blogger @ waytoofantasy discusses Four Things I Want to See More in SFF and I agree!
Mary @ Mary Drover writes a really intricate post on Taking Breaks After You Finish a Novel
Riza @ Pages and Coffee Cups talks about her 10 Thoughts I Had While Reading Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar. I really liked the creative and artsy format of this review.
Sophie @ Meandinkblog compiles a list of Simple Writing Advice that I found SUPER helpful.
Caitlin @ Caitlinalthea shares What It Takes For Me to Rate a Book 5 Stars. I rate my books pretty similarly to this.
films i watched:
- john wick – ★★★★ // I liked keanu reeves in this film. I loved the cinematography. I loved the aesthetic. It was gritty, but not gripping. I’m looking forward to continuing the chronicles.
- jojo rabbit – ★★★★ // A refreshing satire about WWII but I couldn’t get over how antisemitic it was. We don’t generally joke about american slavery and center the narrative around slave owners, so it was weird watching a comedy that was centered around nazis.
- parasite – ★★★★★ // THIS WAS A CINEMATIC MASTERPIECE. It’s best to just go in blind. TRUST ME.
- us – ★★★½ // Ummm…That was CREEPY AF. Even though I predicted the plot twist. The acting, the camerawork, the comedy… Jordan Peele is a genius.
I don’t typically rate the TV shows I watch, so instead I’ll yell at you about them.
- westworld – THE BEST SHOW ON TV, I CANNOT.
- how to get away with murder – A+ conclusion to a diverse and compelling TV series.
- new girl – I never finished the show but I’m so glad I did. I felt like there was a lull around Season 6, which is when I stopped watching years ago, but the final season made up for it. I cried, ya’ll.
- never have i ever – um this is teen rom-com gold. I’m not the target audience but I’m OBSESSED.
- high fidelity – I will literally watch anything starring Zoe Kravitz. The show kind of has an indie vibe. It’s kind of funny. It’s based of the movie her mom was in, like, twenty years ago. It was interesting to watch a dysfunctional record store owner why her past romantic relationships didn’t work out.
- dead to me – Season 1 was interesting. I only started it because I was home alone while my hubs was traveling. But Season 2 was kind of mediocre if you ask me. I mostly like the mystery aspect, but it’s just about two privileged white ladies getting away with murder—and they admit that, too!
- sherlock – A new discovery for me starring Benedict Cumberbatch. The show uses the usual detective mystery tropes, but I keep watching because I like the actor.