May 2020 Reading Wrap-Up


Reading took a major backseat this month as I cared for my grandpa. He passed away peacefully on Saturday, May, 23, 2020 with his family by his side. I know I’m not the first to say that the loss of a loved one leaves a giant, gaping hole in your heart, but it does. No one can replace him, nor would I want any one to; I just wish I could turn the clock back and get even just one more day with him.

As for books and reading, it was (understandably) a slow month. Between Coronavirus and my grandpa, my reading mood just wasn’t there. Here’s hoping that June will be a better month.

May By the Numbers:

  • Total Books Read: 8
  • Audiobooks: 1
  • Five Star Reads: 0 
  • Unread Shelf: 2 (4 DNFs)
  • Books Aquired: 24
  • By Women Authors: (1 DNF)
  • Nonfiction Reads:  1 (2 DNF)
  • Published in 2020: 6 (0 DNF)

Favorite Book of May: Rodham

But here are some honorable mentions: The Last Train to Key West and We Are Not From Here.

Here is a look at the TBR I set:

  • A Backlist Title: 📖 Silver Sparrow by: Tayari Jones
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️ A totally immersive read, this book is about a man who has two separate families – two wives and two daughters – and only one of the families knows about the other. While the writing was good and I was invested in the characters, this one was just fine for me. It was the first book I finished of the month and sadly, it’s already faded from my memory.
  • A BOTM Title: 📖 The Remains of the Day by: Kazuo Ishiguro
    • ❌ DNF – Nope. Totally not the kind of book I enjoy. Maybe it would have turned out ok, but it couldn’t hold my attention long enough.
  • A Nonfiction Title: 📖 The Tattooist of Auschwitz by: Heather Morris
    • ❌ DNF for now…not the kind of book to read when you’re dealing with so much emotional things. So far, the writing is a little disjointed, but I still want to try to pick it up again in the near future.
    • Also, this is not non-fiction 🤷🏼‍♀️ I totally thought it was, but a kind reader of this blog pointed out that I was mistaken!
  • A NetGalley/Edelweiss Title – (this doesn’t really fit the category this month, so I’m just going to read one of the books I have from NetGalley/Edelweiss): Good Morning, Destroyer of Men’s Souls: A Memoir of Women, Addiction, and Love by: Nina Renata Aron
    • 📱 *** I didn’t get to Good Morning, Destroyer of Men’s Souls, but I did read The Last Train to Key West by Chanel Cleeton (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️). I’ve read all of her books and really enjoyed them all. This one felt a little different as it had a whodunnit mystery element to it. It was fast-paced and true to Cleeton’s style – unputdownable! I loved the plot and the characters…I truly think Cleeton is one of my go-to authors now!
  • A Memoir: This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage by: Ann Patchett
    • I didn’t get to it…😔
  • At least 2 physical ARCs:
    • I’m Fine and Neither Are You by: Camille Pagán
      • I didn’t get to it…😔
    • The Twelve-Mile Straight by: Eleanor Henderson
      • I didn’t get to it…😔

I also read the following books:

  • 📖 Lily and the Octopus by: Steven Rowley
    • ❌ DNF – I was so sad to DNF this one because I loved The Editor, but this one had too many A Man Called Ove vibes and I did not enjoy that book at all. In the end, I just wasn’t invested and hated the personification going on.
  • 📱 *** Beach Read by: Emily Henry
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️ A great distraction read for Coronavirus times, but it wasn’t my favorite; it was just a middle-of-the-road read for me.
  • 📖 The Second Life of Tiger Woods by: Michael Bamberger
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 I had high hopes for this one, but it just didn’t deliver. Without my own personal interest in the game, I would have found this book too technical and boring. Admittedly, I went into it looking for a tell-all memoir type book and it’s definetly not that; Tiger Woods wasn’t even interviewed! 
  • 📖 Big Summer by: Jennifer Weiner
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️ I loved Weiner’s book from last year, Mrs. Everything, but this one was flat and boring for me. I did manage to finish it, but I wouldn’t have missed anything had I chose to DNF.
  • 📖 When All Is Said by: Anne Griffin
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️ I took a chance reading this one so soon after my grandpa passed away, but from the first few chapters, it made me smile because there were a lot of similarities to my grandpa. I think this would have been a DNF had I read it at any other time of my life because it also has strong Ove vibes. It’s a great comfort read for this time though.
  • 🎧 *** We Are Not From Here by: Jenny Torres Sanchez
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 I think this book was everything American Dirt was trying to be except it was written by an #ownvoices author so it will probably get better reviews. I loved the audio version and was captured right away.
  • 📖 Rodham by: Curtis Sittenfeld
    • ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Speculative fiction is one of my favorite sub-genres and Sittenfeld’s latest book plays around with the idea of what Hillary Rodham’s life would look like had she not married Bill Clinton. Throughout the book, I had to keep reminding myself that this was fiction and not a memoir. Sittenfeld wrote Hillary’s character with such depth that it totally had that tell-all feel to it. Overall, an immersive and satisfying read – perfect for your summer beach bag!

I tried, but wasn’t feeling:

  • 📖 Lily and the Octopus by: Steven Rowley
    • ❌ DNF – I was so sad to DNF this one because I loved The Editor, but this one had too many A Man Called Ove vibes and I did not enjoy that book at all. In the end, I just wasn’t invested and hated the personification going on.
  • The Remains of the Day by: Kazuo Ishiguro
    • ❌ See above
  • The Tattooist of Auschwitz by: Heather Morris
    • ❌ DNF for now…see above.
  • Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking by: Samin Nosrat
    • ❌ DNF for now

Unread Shelf Update:

Got back on my book buying ban…yay, me! And I tried to be a little more selective on books I accepted as well.

I acquired 24 books in May

I donated/unloaded 15 books!

The new total of books on my bookshelves is 415! 😭😭😭

I’m still loving this challenge though I do feel like I lost sight of it due to everything else going on in my life. If you’d like to participate, head over to Whitney’s blog for more information!

There you have it! What was your favorite read from your May TBR?

(#partner #freebooks: All books noted by asterisks (***) indicate I received the book for free from the publisher, the author, or another promotional company to review. All opinions are my own.)

2 thoughts on “May 2020 Reading Wrap-Up

  1. Love how you format this post – I DNFed The Tattooist of Auschwitz as well, but hope I’ll get to it again, at a later time.


  2. So sorry to hear about your grandpa. Losing a grandparent is not easy – even though they are older and you know they can’t live forever, that doesn’t make it any easier. Hope you find some solace and peace by reading in June 💛


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