Let’s be honest, April was… not fun. Hoping for a slightly more optimistic-looking May!
I’ve been very demotivated when it comes to blogging this month. I sit at home in my room on my laptop all day for work, and just the thought of spending more hours doing the same for my blog tires me out. Somehow I’ve only missed a couple of my regular posting days, but I’ve had no motivation to write reviews so a lot of what I’ve read this month will likely come and go without a post. I did do a mini review post for a handful of my April reads, so maybe I will do the same with the rest and if it turns out I have a lot more to say about a particular book than I thought, then I can bump it up to a full review. If it all goes quiet on The Owlery Reader next month – I’m still here, I’m still reading!
And boy, have I read a lot this month! I know some people have been struggling to sit down and get into a book with everything going on, but it’s been a great distraction for me and the Magical Readathon couldn’t have come at a better time. I have slumped in the past week, but I still managed 12 books in April, plus a short story.
What I Read
- Behind Closed Doors: Sex Education Transformed by Natalie Fiennes (Mini review) – 2 stars
- A Forest, or a Tree by Tegan Moore (Short story) (No review) – 2 stars
- White is for Witching by Helen Oyeyemi (Review) – 4 stars
- The Summer Book by Tove Jansson (Mini review) – 3 stars
- Foe by Iain Reid (Review) – 5 stars
- The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner (Review) – 3 stars
- Educated by Tara Westover (Mini review) – 3 stars
- London: A Short History by A. N. Wilson (Mini review) – 1 star
- The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace (Review) – 1 star
- The Ice Dragon by George R. R. Martin (Review) – 4 stars
- Autumn by Ali Smith (No review) – 4 stars
- Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig (Review) – 4 stars
- The Fire this Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race edited by Jesmyn Ward (No review) – 4 stars
I actually started the If You’ve Got it, Read it challenge at the beginning of the year, and I’ve got only three more books left to read before I complete that. I didn’t do a TBR post for it because a) I wasn’t sure I was going to stick with it, and b) with 24 prompts and other reading challenges coming and going over the past couple of months, the books were bound to change. However, I will be doing a wrap up post when I finish in the next few weeks. My final books for the challenge are A View of the Empire at Sunset by Caryl Phillips, The Little Friend by Donna Tartt, and By Order of the Peaky Blinders, a behind-the-scenes companion book to the TV show.
Missed some posts?
- My usual Stacking the Shelves post coincided with a Six For Sunday prompt, so this month just focused on books I added to my Goodreads ‘Want to Read’ shelf recently.
- I took part in three Six for Sunday posts: one was a follow up to Stacking the Shelves in which I listed my six newest books that I actually own, a second was the oldest books on my TBR, and finally I looked at six books I think will be five stars!
- A Top 5 Wednesday post I’ve been meaning to do for a while: my favourite cookbooks!
- In the third edition of my Friday’s Further Reading series I shared posts about how to support indie booksellers, diversity in academia, and more.
Here are some other things I’ve been enjoying this month.
On the small screen
I finished my Reign re-watch and actually made it to the end of season four for the first time. It was mediocre and definitely the weakest season but I’m glad to have finally finished it!
This means I can start all of the the other shows in my Netflix list that I’ve been neglecting. I binged season two of YOU in two days and loved every minute. I watched Phantom Thread, which was just *Italian chef kiss*, and ticked another film off my Amazon Prime watchlist – Booksmart – which made me really miss my bestie.
Other films I watched this month are Thoroughbreds, Horse Girl, Red Joan, To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, and The Irishman.
I feel like I never discover new music, but thanks to a few days of summer sun last week and my housemate taking up the role of resident DJ, I’ve actually added a few new tracks to my Spotify library for once! One is Hayley Williams’ incredibly catchy Cinnamon, and the other is a dreamy cover of You Sexy Thing by Zella Day.
What else have I been upto?
I’ve been trying to keep busy but get away from my laptop in the evenings after work, so my housemates and I have been working on getting our garden ready for summer. It was an absolute state, no one had ever really done anything substantial to it in years, but we dug out rusted railings and old tree stumps, replaced fencing, and even made a sofa out of salvaged pallets! It’s definitely kept us busy and I’m excited to enjoy the sunshine out there in the coming months!
I’ve also done a lot of sorting out of stuff. Just rearranging cupboards, having a general clear out. Anything to kind of keep me busy and moving around.
And of course, a lot of video calls with family and friends!
What was your favourite April read?
Anything else you’ve been loving this month?