Another month is over, which means it’s time for my monthly wrap up yet again. I feel like April flew by very fast, possibly because there are a few things going on in May that I am really not looking forward to. But despite this month feeling too quick I feel like I read a good number of books, and actually have the highest monthly page count so far this year, so I’m really happy with my reading this month. This was also the first month this year I did not skip a posting day, AND I found a new favorite book, so it was kind of a great month. But I am yet again writing this at the very last minute because it’s been kind of a crazy busy week over here, so let’s just get to the books.
What I Read
Divergent Mind: Thriving in a World That Wasn’t Designed for You by Jenara Nerenberg – ★★★★☆
April is National Autism and Neurodiversity Appreciation Month, so I obviously had to pick up a book for that. I didn’t get to the others I was considering, but I am glad to have read this one. It’s nonfiction about adapting and succeeding as a neurodiverse woman. I feel like this was geared more towards women who were diagnosed with ADHD later in life (a club of which I am a member). I didn’t find it particularly life changing (and I honestly don’t remember too much about it now, at the end of the month), but it was a really interesting read with some good insights.
Pizza Girl by Jane Kyoung Frazier – ★★★☆☆
For some reason, the eighties cover design on this book has been catching my eye for the past year, and I finally felt like actually reading it. It was a little weird and quirky, but not in the way I usually love (and we all know I like weird). I honestly still don’t know what I think about this one. I definitely didn’t dislike it, but I did kind of dislike most of the characters. I don’t think it was a two, but it’s definitely not a four-star read, so I settled in the middle. This one’s about a young pizza delivery girl, who is not excited about being pregnant and gets attached to one of her customers, who kind of becomes a semi-friend who she can look up to and get parenting advice from. Overall, this one was just meh. I don’t think I liked the ending, but I liked the idea behind it and the quirkiness of the story.
My Evil Mother by Margaret Atwood – ★★★☆☆
Margaret Atwood released this short story, this month and it looked kind of fun. Plus, I could read it on the Kindle app I may or may not have installed on my work computer (if you get the window just the right size, it fits into the outlook email window so it looks like I’m doing work things. Anyway, this was a little weird and interesting, but nothing amazing. Just a nice, short read.
Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano – ★★★★☆
I added this to my reading list this month because I was starting to feel a little slumpy and thought a fun thriller would snap me out of it. And it actually kind of worked! This book is about a romantic suspense author who is overheard discussing the plot of her new book with her agent in a Panera. The woman who overhears the conversation assumes our author is a hit woman and the hijinks go from there. This book was so fun, and I flew through it in like two days.
Finlay Donovan Knocks ‘Em Dead by Elle Cosimano – ★★★☆☆
Of course the first book in this series ends on a bit of a cliffhanger, so I had to jump straight into book two. I didn’t like it as much as the first, but it was still a fun read. Which is kind of all I’m looking for when I pick up a book like this.
Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi – ★★★☆☆
I finally finished this one! And we did have a very nice book club discussion about it. I liked this one, but for some reason didn’t quite love it. It’s about a little coffee shop where you can time travel to a single day, but you have to stay in your seat and you have to be back by the time your coffee gets cold. It was originally a stage play – which was kind of evident to me while reading – and is four little vignettes of the people who choose to time travel in the cafe. It was cute and kind of sad at times, but overall a nice little read. I’ll probably end up reading the sequel at some point, because that one sounds fun, too.
Beasts of a Little Land by Juhea Kim – ★★★☆☆
I wanted to love this book so much. It’s an epic story that starts with a Korean hunter saving an invading Japanese soldier from a tiger and then, over the next fifty years follows the war, as well as a young girl sold to be a courtesan and an orphan beggar boy who becomes her friend. This doesn’t feel like a debut, which it is. But I think it might have just been a little too ambitious. I liked it, but found it hard to follow at times, and I struggled to keep track of the many characters. So I wasn’t able to connect to it as much as I wanted, unfortunately. Still a good book, and definitely worth checking out, but just know this book definitely has a lot going on.
Hench by Natalie Zina Walschots – ★★★★★
While I wouldn’t say it was a bad reading month, it definitely felt more along the lines of “fine” than “good”. But I am very happy to say that I finished the month off strong with a new favorite. Seriously, I’m already wishing I could read this all over again. I loved it so, so much. This book is about a henchwoman who gets caught in a superhero’s crossfire and ends up disabled. Which is basically her villain origin story. This was just as incredible as I’d hoped it was, and I’d be shocked if this doesn’t end up on my favorites list for the year. LOVED.
What I’m Currently Reading
Matrix by Lauren Groff
You all know I love medieval literature (and read a ton of it last year because Harvard told me to – kind of). And one of the staples of medieval lit is Marie de France, who is the main character of this novel. I’m about halfway through, and so far I am absolutely loving it. It feels like classic historical fiction, but with a bit of a weird twist, and it’s just my kind of book. I liked Fates & Furies, but I have a feeling this one is going to be a five-star read.
What I Watched
This was definitely the month of TV shows based on real crimes. Obviously, I had to watch this one based on WeWork, starring Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway. I had followed the WeWork story a few years ago when all the crazy was going down, so it was interesting to see it portrayed on screen. And I liked it, it was entertaining, but I feel like they could have done more with showing how so many of the “little” people were affected while the frauds are still millionaires.
I also followed the Theranos story when it was happening – I even read John Carreyrou’s book and everything. So I was more familiar with this one, and obviously I had to watch the Amanda Seyfried version of Elizabeth Holmes (though I am also very excited to see Jennifer Lawrence’s take, which I believe is actually a film adaptation of Carreyrou’s book, Bad Blood). Anyway, I liked this one. I wish they had done one more episode because the ending felt so rushed, but it was good.
The Thing About Pam
Now this crime, I hadn’t heard of before seeing this show, and wow, this was just so sad. It’s kind of a really long story, so I won’t go into it here – Google Pam Hupp if you’re curious – but I thought this was really well done and fun to watch. Definitely something different for Renée Zellweger, but she pulls it off and is both creepy and annoying. I enjoyed this one, even though it did upset me a little to learn about her crimes and all of her innocent victims.
April was National Autism and Neurodiversity Appreciation Month, so I put together a list of books to read that either have neurodiverse characters or were written by neurodiverse authors. As someone recently diagnosed with ADHD, this was kind of a fun post to research, and I definitely added a lot of new books to my own list.
I had a lot of fun putting together this list of books I think (hope) might be on Rory’s reading list if it got updated for 2022. Probably just wishful thinking on my end, but I’d love to see her grow and diversity her reading a bit, so there are some great diverse books on this list.
That’s it for April! I hope you enjoyed this post. What was your favorite book this month?
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