Is it acceptable to do a monthly wrap-up when you’re halfway in to the next month? I’m just gonna say yes and roll with it. The past 6 weeks have been hectic – I went on my first ever Hen Party (which will go down in history as the BEST Hen Do ever!), had a promotion in work (which has been crazy busy), I’ve been working on a couple of unexpected freelance gigs, and I’ve been doing a decent amount of reading (but hardly any review-writing). I struggled to find the time to blog, and didn’t want to publish weak content. So I waited until Easter, and here I am!
Hen Party in Magaluf!
I’m still being a conscious book-shopper and tracking not only the books I buy online, but also the ones I’m picking up in-store (see my annual Book Buying post for more info!). This month I purchased:
- Homo Deus: For the first time ever, more people die from eating too much than from eating too little; more people die from old age than from infectious diseases; and more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals put together. This follow-up to Sapiens looks fab!
- The Mandibles: The year is 2029, and nothing is as it should be. In a coordinated move by the rest of the world’s governments, the dollar loses all its value.
- Hidden Figures: After watching and LOVING the movie last month, I decided to pick up a copy of the book in the hopes it would go in to even more detail on the lives of these influential women.
- The Escape Artist: I collect Chmaberlain’s novels, and this was part of a 2 for £7 deal along with Hidden Figures. Enough said.
- Holding: I read The Life and Loves of a He Devil last month, and really enjoyed Norton’s writing style, so decided to give his novel a go. I got my hands on a signed copy, which sweetened the deal!
- O’s Little Guides: I got three of these essay collections in a set from The Book People, including the Little Book of Happiness, the Little Book of Love & Friendship, and the Little Guide to Finding Your True Purpose.
- Small Great Things: I also collect Picoult books and was super happy to get my hands on this gorgeous edition at such a great price!
- Elizabeth Noble collection: A few years ago I read Things I Want My Daughters to Know. From memory, I really enjoyed it, but my copy was water damaged. I spotted it as part of a collection on The Book People and snapped it up, as the rest of the titles look promising.
I was a super lucky blogger and also got sent some great books to review from Publishers:
- The Hate U Give: I had heard nothing but AMAZING things about this Own Voices contemporary YA novel based loosely on true events and the #BlackLivesMatter movement. I read it as soon as it arrived – review to follow very soon!
- This Love: I won this through Goodreads First Reads. It looks like a contemporary romance with a bit of grit!
- Crimson and Bone: Having read, and LOVED, Fiorato’s last novel The Double Life of Mistress Kit Kavanagh, I can’t wait to get stuck in to this one!
- The Dark Days Pact: I read and reviewed The Dark Days Club last year, and though it took a little while to get in to, I ultimately really enjoyed it. Looking forward to seeing where this story goes!
- I’m Still Here: Translated from French, this is a modern-day Sleeping Beauty story that sounds super interesting!
Somehow, the last time I did a monthly wrap-up was October 2016. I don’t even know how this is possible, so we’ll swiftly move right along! As per usual, I’m finding it difficult to stick to a regular blogging routine, BUT I’m still here and I’m still posting, even if I do have SO MANY reviews to catch up on…
I think I’ve been a very well behaved Book Blogger lately. Since posting my annual book-spending review, I’ve been much more conscious of my book buying (especially because this year I’m also tracking books bought in a physical bookstore!). Also, since I finally acquired some new (and amazing) book cases, I’m acutely aware of how many unread books I own…
The Read Books
The Unread Books
That being said, there have still been a few sneaky purchases since the start of the year, though nearly all of these were purchased with reward vouchers of some description for Amazon and The Works! Honestly, sign up for Quidco, people, you will not regret it.
- When Breath Becomes Air: At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer.
- Scrappy Little Nobody: She was a grower, but I’ve slowly fallen a little bit in love with Anna Kendrick. I’ve already finished this one, review to follow soon!
- A Court of Wings and Ruin: I preordered this one on Amazon (I know, given my preorder rant, I’m a glutton for punishment!). I. CAN’T. WAIT.
- The Life and Loves of a He Devil: I LOVE Graham Norton, and I had heard bad things about this so stayed away from it. I’m almost finished it and really enjoyed it!
- Mad Girl: When Breath Becomes Air was part of a 2 for £7 deal. This was my “I’m a weak Book Geek” purchase.
- Start With Why: This video was doing the rounds on Facebook, and I started following Simon to see what he’s all about. What he says intrigues me, so a book purchase was made. Simple thought process that one.
- Why Women Don’t Ask: I’m hitting a career crossroads, of sorts, and know from other sources that women can inherently find it difficult to negotiate and understand financial self-worth (partly because we’re taught not to from a young age, and partly because of society’s belief that we shouldn’t). Consider this training and a pep talk for what hopefully lies ahead for me… speaking of…
- Emotional Intelligence 2.0: This has been available as a Goodreads First Reads giveaway SO many times. I’ve entered a ton of times, and never won. So I took matters in to my own hands. I started following the author, Travis Bradberry, on LinkedIn, and liked what he had to say, so I took the plunge.
- Leadership 2.0: While I was picking up Emotional Intelligence, I spied this one. Bit of personal development never hurt nobody, right?
Reading Challenges are a hot topic, and there are A LOT to choose from.
There’s the super popular PopSugar Reading Challenge, and the equally infamous Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge, then of course there is the Goodreads Challenge, as well as the vast number this community comes up with themselves, and this year I’m putting my foot down.
I’m saying “no” to reading challenges.
For some reason this year, the gap between Halloween and Christmas feels like no time at all. Work is incredibly busy and will continue to be so right up until the 23rd of December, but then, THEN, I get 2 weeks off, and right now I honestly can’t wait. I love Christmas shopping and buying presents for loved ones, and I’ve made a good start already. Hopefully, I’ll have 80% of it sorted by the end of the month.
In other news, I’m really struggling with the dark evenings and increasingly darker mornings. I used to think I was a Winter person, but I take it back, I’m so not. I just want to hibernate. I’m still going to the gym, and I’ve started going three times a week instead of two, but going after work when it’s already dark? The struggle is real, guys.
Nope, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. In October I won £100 worth of books from Wordery! I went through my wishlist shelf on Goodreads, and asked you guys for recommendations on Twitter, and finally chose:
I had really great blogging months in July and August, but September is our year-end in work and there was SO much going on that blogging really took a back seat. I was hoping to get back in to the swing of things in October, but so far I haven’t had much luck. Scheduling really is the way to go for me, but I haven’t had time to do much of that either! I’m hoping for the next few weeks I’ll get much more content up, fingers crossed!
For review this month, I received Pre-suasion by Robert B. Cialdini, Nina Is Not OK by Shappi Khorsandi, Girls & Sex: Navigating the Complicated New Landscape by Peggy Orenstein, and Eating the Elephant by Alice Wells. I also received copies of two illustrated picture books for children. I don’t tend to read or review these often, but in light of my Best Friend (yes, I give that title capitals!) having an adorable baby girl, I’ve taken a bit of an interest in picture books for mini people. I received The Christmas Eve Tree and A First Book of Animals.
Purchases this month… You’d think after my little indulgence last month I would have declined… Instead I restrained. This month I purchased Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk, DK’s The History Book (which is part of their Big Ideas Simply Explained series. I own about 5 of them now), Queen Bees by Sian Evans, as well as two sets – Percy Jackson and the Olympians series and The Selection series (PJ is on offer for £6.99 for 5 books, and The Selection is on offer for £7.99 for 5 books, I CANNOT say no to those prices, AND I had a discount code too). I’m intending the Percy Jackson series to be a gift, that I might sneakily try to read first…
In BIG (and obvious) news, I also picked up a signed copy of Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas, which I’ve already read. Review to follow once I can form coherent thoughts.
I know everyone is saying it, and I say it every month (and should really change my tune), but honestly where is this year going? I’m starting to get excited about two weeks off over Christmas already! But that’s the one and only time I’m going to mention it until after Halloween, pinkie promise!
Don’t forget to enter my INT giveaway for a paperback copy of It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover, AND I’m hosting a giveaway for a paperback copy of The Double Life of Mistress Kit Kavanagh (UK & Ire).
For review this month, I received The Things I Should Have Told You by Carmel Harrington (which was beautifully packaged!), Harmony by Carolyn Parkhurst, and A Boy Made of Blocks by Keith Stuart. I also agreed to review a children’s picture book called A Child of Books. Picture books aren’t something I tend to buy or review, but this one is an ode to reading, so I thought I would give it a go.
It can’t be August already! The months are flying past this year! I had a pretty productive July though, so I’m hoping that keeps up next month.
I’m back! June quite literally flew past in a blur of exams and coursework, but now they are all out of the way, and I can refocus on some serious blogging. July, I am ready for you!