Hello, dear friends! I hope you are all well and if not, I hope better days head your way soon!
Well, friends, here we are at the middle of the year—can you believe it? It feels slightly surreal that we’ve made it here; it so often feels like the world is ending every day and yet here we are! I guess we’ve made it!!
My May was a surprisingly busy. I’m taking courses this summer, so those started back in mid-May and I’ve been hard at work ever since. Of course, this has meant less time for reading, sadly. Strangely enough, though, I did watch a bunch of movies? Which is weird considering I typically don’t watch movies that much, haha! Regardless, I had a pretty happy month, so let’s take a look at what went down!
what i posted
- Lately With Lila April 2022
- Introducing “Worlds Beyond Words,” A Podcast + Episode #1: Strong Female Characters
- My “Hot Girl” TBR
what i read
😈 Clara and the Devil Part II by Olivie Blake & Little Chmura (⭐⭐⭐⭐) This is a quietly elegant and mysterious webcomic that progresses at an achingly, artfully slow pace, but somehow manages to keep me hooked! Part II added so much more intrigue and I’m itching to see what The Devil has up their sleeve!
what i’m reading
👁️ The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake Yes, I am still reading and savoring this book. Yes, I am still wildly in love with this book.
👑 The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri This is our Pages in Colour book club selection for this quarter and I’m so excited to finally be digging into this Adult Fantasy that I’ve heard so many great things about!
🔍 The Agathas by Liz Lawson and Kathleen Glasgow This book looked so intriguing and like a great mystery, plus after finishing up all of the Truly Devious books that are currently released, I needed a new mystery book/series to obsess over. And so far, this book has been a really good option! I just LOVE the voice of both POV characters and the plot has me hanging on each word!
⚔️ Squire by Nadia Shammas and Sara Alfageeh I’ve loved Alfageeh’s art for years now, so when I heard she’d be working on a #OwnVoices Arab-inspired fantasy graphic novel with Nadia Shammas, I knew I had to get my hands on it! So, obviously, I’ve been borrowing it from my local library and reading it as much as possible whenever I get the chance.
what i watched
🍓 The Hating Game (⭐⭐⭐⭐) I thought this was really cute! I’ve never read the book, so I can’t speak on how it compares, but as a rom com movie on its own, I thought it was great (and that’s coming from someone who’s not that into rom coms in general)! The lead actors had great chemistry and there was a nice balance of cute moments and sexy moments! I will say that the third act conflict felt a little contrived, but that’s really my only complaint.
🔎 Death on the Nile (⭐⭐) I was so excited to watch this film, even without having read the book, but unfortunately this one was a major disappointment. Mostly while watching the film I found myself shockingly bored. The characters lacked charisma, the plot felt incredibly static, and, worst of all, I figured out half of the solution to the mystery from the start.
🏮 Everything Everywhere All At Once (⭐⭐⭐) This movie wasn’t my favorite, but it was interesting nonetheless. It had a lot of themes concerning anthropology and psychology and I definitely enjoyed that commentary, although I do think it got kinda jumbled in a couple of places. I will say that this is a very culturally Chinese film, and I think I would’ve enjoyed it and understood it infinitely more if I were Chinese. Apart from that, the cinematography was incredible and reflected the themes of the film with stunning accuracy. Trigger warning for depression and suicidality. Also wouldn’t recommend this film if you have seizures and/or get migraines easily, as the movie has a lot of rapid fire flashing lights and images.
🚲 Along for the Ride (⭐⭐⭐) I actually read the book this was adapted from back when I was fifteen! Nowadays I’m not the biggest fan of contemporary YA, though, so maybe it’s not super surprising that I thought this movie was just alright? I remember that back when I read the book I wasn’t a big fan of Auden, largely because her personality is the polar opposite of mine, and watching the movie brought back all of those feelings. The other thing is that the actor playing Eli spoke with a stereotypical “fuckboi accent” and it made it hard to take his emotional beats opposite Auden seriously. But I digress. I guess this movie just wasn’t my thing, and you know what? That’s okay.
💎 Ocean’s Eight (⭐⭐⭐) Wasn’t my favorite, but it was still cute. I haven’t seen the other films, though, so I might be missing context? Either way, the characters felt a bit stale and the plot lacked a certain gravitas. I guess, overall, the film felt a little…tame, I guess?? Y’all, I think Six of Crows has ruined me for heist stories…
what i listened to
may 2022 playlist
- “I’m A Lady” by Santigold If you’ve been looking for an awesome feminist anthem, I highly recommend this one!
- “The Deepest of Sighs, The Frankest of Shadows” by Gretta Ray I love this song so much. Brb, sobbing right now…
- “MEAN!” by Madeline The Person This song is so comforting and affirming.
- “It’s Givin” by Latto Gotta have a fun summer anthem on the list!
🌞 SOLAR This podcast was recommended to me by Spotify and I gotta say: I’ll be damned if the Spotify algorithm doesn’t have my taste in music and podcasts down to a T! I instantly fell in love with this immersive sci fi audiodrama about survivors of a space flight disaster who are stranded on separate sides of a spaceship. There’s so much intrigue and the stakes are high in this one, leaving me constantly on the edge of my seat. I’d highly recommend SOLAR, especially if you’re a fan of the audiobooks for The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff.
what i bookmarked
- Judy discussed why, as a Korean writer/actor, she doesn’t look for representation in media (Video)
- Kat investigated if she and Harry Styles are compatible readers
- Simone highlighted five books featuring the chosen one trope
- Write Through The Night featured an analysis of Six of Crows‘ Inej Ghafa and the power of faith
- Maria recommended books based on Eurovision songs
- Rosina talked about the magic of storytelling within roleplay
- Stephen discussed what should define a young adult book
- Sophie wrote a step-by-step guide to fantasy worldbuilding
- Reem shared writing prompts inspired by music
- The Book Nook put together a list of Eurovision outfits as fantasy book covers
- Stephanie examine whether or not 10 backlist books getting a “second life” on TikTok deserve it
- Lilly Lu guest posted on Bookish Brews to talk about decolonizing story structure and literary form
- The Smut Report debated “happily ever afters” vs. “happy for nows” in romance novels
- Kat compared the book and the tv adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Normal People
- Saima spotlighted dark academia books
- Kaya made the case for new adult as a genre
- Siena guided us through why you should start a book blog
- Jayati showed off 20 queer Asian books to add to your TBR
hidden gems of the internet
- The Carterhough School of Folklore and the Fantastic gave a free video lecture for Star Wars Day 2022 all about the intersections of folklore and Star Wars
- Nicole has a lovely review of the outstanding disability representation in Sarah J. Maas’s Tower of Dawn
- Tor.com featured a discussion by Stina Leicht all about antiheroes, villains, and their origin stories
what i did in may 2022
I actually had a pretty good month! My summer semester started on May 16th and I’ve really enjoyed being back in class after having taken the Spring 2022 semester off! I’m actually retaking Health and Intro to Communication (the first time I took both of these classes I had a health crisis and my grades suffered) and I’m surprised to find that I’m really enjoying both! Both of the classes are structured very much like applied sociology courses and, since I enjoy sociology, I’m enjoying that aspect of both courses. I also feel like both courses teach info that’s very applicable to my real life, so I really appreciate that as well.
I also got together with friends a couple of times in May. A group of my friends from school and I went to see Everything Everywhere All At Once, so that was really fun. I also reconnected with an old friend and have been enjoying catching up with them too. Other than that, though, May was mostly filled with schoolwork.
what i’m looking forward to in june 2022
I don’t really know what this June will bring except for more schoolwork, honestly. I am planning to go to the Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival, so I’m looking forward to that. I’d love to go to maybe a Profs & Pints lecture or attend Sunset for Dancers, but it’s all kinda up in the air for now. Other than that, though, who knows what the month will bring!
spill the beans, friends!
- How was your May?
- Did you read anything interesting?
- Is there anything you’re looking forward to coming up this June?