April Wrap-Up: Everything’s coming up apocalypse

The world is so awful right now.

Basic human rights: Being stripped. Really cute Easter-related items like pastel candy and small stuffed animals shaped like chicks: Were on sale but now impossible to find until next spring. The weather: Weird, for existential environmental reasons, probably.

But, if it’s cool with you, we’re going to ignore all of that.

I imagine 0% of you are following me to get my takes on world issues (although if you aren’t following to hear me complain, you probably receive content up your alley approx every other month), and that definitely isn’t why I create book content (we all need an outlet), but if you need anything ever shoot me a message on Instagram or Goodreads and I am there to shout about how everything sucks with you.

Pretty constantly. I don’t know how to log off.

Now.

Let’s get into it.

I have never been more online and I have never felt better.

Okay, both of those things were egregious lies, but still. April had SO MUCH TO LOVE.

I went on vacation. (Swipe for proof.)

I went to my favorite city in the world for the first time since the pandemic, basically, if you don’t count times I exclusively went to see John Mulaney. (Which I do not.)

I STARTED A BOOK CLUB!!!! And we’re reading two of my favorite books of all time (Conversations with Friends and East of Eden) and I want you to join so badly because we’re having such a good time it makes me understand why people become missionaries.

And my favorite basketball team is still in it (albeit painfully), and I love my friends, and I love my family, and I had a good reading month in quality and quantity without forcing myself into a slump…

I’m sorry to be corny but in spite of the chemical imbalance behaviors that are normal for me, I just don’t know what to do with myself!

Everything rules.

I did delete Twitter, though. Can’t have everything.

As per usual, I have no idea how these went. I like being surprised with the rest of you ❤ And also I have no self-awareness.

APRIL GOALS

ENJOY VACATION! ✓

READ 28+ BOOKS ✓

START & FINISH TWO MORE PROJECTS ✓ kinda

BACK TO #1 ON GOODREADS PERHAPS X

BLOG TWO OR SO TIMES ✓

POST ON INSTAGRAM 5+ TIMES IF YOU CAN? ✓

Okay……..crushed it?

Finishing two projects is a check on a technicality, because I know past me meant starting and finishing another classic (hello, Tenant, you bastard) and another genius project and I very much did not do that.

I have been trying to do the collected poems of Emily Dickinson in any reasonable length of time and it just isn’t happening.

But I would call starting a whole book club a project dare I say!!!

GOALS FOR MAY

FINISH BOTH BOOK CLUB BOOKS

READ BOOKS BY ASIAN AUTHORS

READ 31+ BOOKS

BACK TO #1 ON GOODREADS PERHAPS

BLOG TWO OR SO TIMES

POST ON INSTAGRAM 8+ TIMES

I feel like I’ve been saying this for a hundred months, but I’m saying it anyway:

SUMMER SUMMER SUMMER SUMMER!

I am so excited to be irresponsible in terms of sun safety and to day drink and to act like I don’t have a job. (If anyone I work with is reading this, I’m only kidding. You know I’m physically incapable of doing that.)

I also have a bunch of shows and concerts and things coming up this month, and my sister is graduating from college, and my other sister is coming back…

Everything is wonderful.

In terms of reading, I’m focusing on books by Asian authors for AAPI Heritage Month, and I’m loving it already. (I’m 5 books in on 3 days and I barely read today.)

In other news: Book club! Still addicted to bookstagram! Still in my toxic codependent relationship with Goodreads! Same ol same old.

Book time!



1. How to Pronounce Knife by Souvankham Thammavongsa

Read: April 1-3 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3 stars

I read this very quickly when I first read it, and therefore was unable to review it story by story like I try to do because I was too engrossed. (Good.)

Then I tried to read this in my normal month-later reviewing window (this is the best I can do, don’t @ me) and couldn’t remember anything in particular about it to say.

In conclusion, the same thing happening twice in the same thing way be both a positive and a negative!

The more you know.



2. The No-Show by Beth O’Leary

Read: April 4 ✿✿✿ Rating: 1.5 stars

I did not post my review of this until today, and there were already like 5 people in the comments getting mad at me.

So all I have to say is that y’all better keep that same energy. If this isn’t one of those reviews I’m scared to check the notifications for going forward, you’re a bunch of cowards.

And also, this was not good! Or a rom. Or a com, for that matter.



3. Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer

Read: April 5 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3 stars

Back to back disappointing reads, falling behind on my challenge, starting to feel a slump coming on…so what do I do?

I pick up an extremely overdue ARC that I can’t even remember wanting to read at any point, let alone requesting.

That’s why they pay me the big blogging bucks.

(There are no blogging bucks.)



4. The Idiot by Elif Batuman

Read: March 30-April 6 ✿✿✿ Rating: 5 stars

I could feel a mental breakdown coming on at the beginning of this month, and I was able to completely and utterly counteract it solely by reading this book as slowly as humanly possible and also underlining the ever living f*ck out of it.

The most perfect character-driven book ever.

I feel like the fact that a sequel is coming out is the universe kissing me on the forehead.



5. Little Rabbit by Alyssa Songsiridej

Read: April 6 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

Immediately after reading this I physically required a prescription for 14 deep breaths and watch a children’s movie.

This is a good read for you if you liked Normal People but you’re not one of those people who thinks it’s a romance.

If you think it’s a romance, AHHHH!!!

(That was me trying to scare you out of thinking that.)



6. Live Laugh Kidnap by Gabby Noone

Read: April 4-6 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

I am a Gabby Noone stan to my core. She is criminally underrated and if you like Emily Henry or Sarah Hogle and also reading tweets and also quirky YA and you’re not already ON IT I don’t know what to even tell you.

And also, at the same time, this was not as good as her other book.

But then again, Layoverland, her debut about teens in Jell-O airport purgatory, is one of like 0.0001% of YA contemporaries I’ve ever 5 starred. So.



7. The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin

Read: April 4-6 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

I have way too many projects going on (long classics project with Elle, genius project where I read a short story every day, review project where I review books I read ages ago, AAPI month this month, and so on) at any given time, so I’m not even daring to make this a formal statement, but:

I am LOWKEY reading books I only half-read when they were assigned in school. And it is going well.



8. Mrs. Caliban by Rachel Ingalls

Read: April 7-11 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

I might as well read a book about a woman falling in love with a frog man.

Why not. It’s not like it didn’t work out. Somehow this managed to be better than the Academy Award winning nightmare the Shape of Water.

Also I was on vacation in Florida while reading this and that feels like a 4D immersive reading experience, for some reason.

Is that bigoted against Florida to say?



9. Milk Fed by Melissa Broder

Read: April 12 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

To be a woman is to hunger, am I right.

I read this book out of a new instinct I have to read like a model posting Instagram stories.

It was very serendipitous (and stereotype-reinforcing) that this book was about unfulfilled desires and the patriarchy.

And also eating disorders.



10. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

Read: April 9-13 ✿✿✿ Rating: 2 stars

I did not know that if you’re mentally ill you’re allowed to be mean and annoying.

I wish I had done things differently.

On the bright side, for the short times I was reading this on the beach before somehow preferring even the purgatory that is being alone with my thoughts, I was the coolest and edgiest girl there.

Perpetual goals.



11. Cult Classic by Sloane Crosley

Read: April 14-16 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

Lately I’ve been feeling Drawn To Certain Books By The Universe, and then every time I dislike one of them it hits approximately a thousand times harder than a normal book being disappointing.

Thank god, I didn’t dislike this one at all.

How could I dislike a book when the villain of it is, like, the idea of dating men.

Huge overlap in my interests.



12. Disfigured by Amanda Leduc

Read: April 18 ✿✿✿ Rating: 4 stars

I am still not capable of casually reading non-memoir nonfiction (read: I pick up nonfiction books just around never and take 100 years to read them and then also never remember them).

But damn, books like this make me wish I did!

This was so good.

And also took slightly less than 100 years.



13. House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland

Read: April 14-19 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

I picked this up casually, accidentally read 100 pages of it in a sitting, immediately questioned whether it was a cursed object, and then took 4 days to read the remaining 200 pages.

So probably a cursed object.

But, like. Ineffective.

Nobody’s perfect.



14. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf

Read: April 18-19 ✿✿✿ Rating: 4.5 stars

Sometimes – okay, most of the time, speaking truthfully it’s like my resting state – I forget that people from old times can be funny.

It just doesn’t fit with their whole thing! You know. The dryness. The weird constricting outfits. Whatever.

Virginia Woolf isn’t even from all that long ago but I still was surprised by the lols. And also the brilliance, and the reminder of Feminism Through The Ages. But mostly the lols.



15. Last Summer on State Street by Toya Wolfe

Read: April 18-19 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

The thing about judging books by their covers is that it works.

Look at that cover. I added this to my to-read list because of the cover. I requested it on NetGalley because of the cover. I was granted the request presumably due to my irresistible charm. I read it because of the charm.

And then I enjoyed it!

If I didn’t enjoy it, maybe I would have stopped. Probably not, but it’s possible.



16. The Roughest Draft by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka

Read: April 19-20 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3 stars

Wow…a couple that writes books together…wrote a romance novel about a couple that writes books together…

I wonder how they POSSIBLY came up with that one.

More importantly, I wonder how they managed to let 43 uses of the word gentle make it into the final product.

Seems like one of them would have noticed.



17. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Read: April 21 ✿✿✿ Rating: 5 stars

In the shock of the century, I reread my favorite book of all time, which I reread bare minimum once a year and almost always when the weather turns nice.

We’re all stunned that I read it in approx 45 minutes, had a perfect time, and once again rated it 5 stars.

I did read a new edition this time, though.



18. A Certain Hunger by Chelsea G. Summers

Read: April 20-21 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

A literary mystery/thriller about a food critic turned murderer slash cannibal writing her confessional memoir from prison, with a cover like this one…it sounds like my dream.

And if that’s what it was, instead of being ALMOST what I got, it probably would have been.

But life is full of mild disappointments. They build character.



19. The Accidental Pinup by Danielle Jackson

Read: April 20-22 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3 stars

Romance quest continuing apace!

Maybe I should give up calling it romance quest and accept that my mission to find even one more romance I can rate 5 stars is how I’ll spend the rest of my lifetime.

Or maybe I should just get to Emily Henry’s new one sooner than later.

But everyone should keep in mind that if I don’t completely love it I’m going to melt down.



20. Acts of Desperation by Megan Nolan

Read: April 22-24 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

Do you ever pick up a book and you’re like oh HELL yeah, this is going to be a five star, I love the style, I feel like my thoughts are being stolen, this story sounds right up my alley, and then…

Time passes…

And by the time you hit the end it’s not even a book you’d really recommend?

Or is that just me.



21. We Were Never Here by Andrea Bartz

Read: April 22-25 ✿✿✿ Rating: 1 star

I read this for my work book club, which is the most grown-up thing I have ever done in my life, probably.

I hate being an adult.

This book sucked so much.

Shameless plug for my book club, where we will never read a book like this one. (Either in the category “bad” or in the category “bestselling quasi-thriller.)



22. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë

Read: April 1-27 ✿✿✿ Rating: 2 stars

The second installment of Project Long Classics, and it turns out, baby, they can’t all be winners.

Even when I really need them to me, for a combination of my reading challenge, my continued lack of reading slump, and psychological reasons.

These characters suck so much that it seems obvious that if Charlotte Brontë hadn’t slayed for hundreds of years into the future with Jane Eyre it would have been lost to time with great efficiency.



23. No One Is Talking about This by Patricia Lockwood

Read: April 26-27 ✿✿✿ Rating: 4.5 stars

I don’t know what it is.

I used to never, ever cry. When people would be like “I cry once a year,” that seemed unusually frequent to me. I could make it through any day, any trauma, any piece of content tear free.

Now it seems like once a week I’m down for the count. Combine my viewing of Everything Everywhere All At Once with my experience with this book and I could single-handedly replenish the oceans. Might be a 5 star.



24. The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Read: April 24-27 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3.5 stars

Welcome to Emma Rereading Books She Half Read In School And Definitely Didn’t Do Justice, Kate Chopin Edition, Part Two, And It’s 3.5 Again.

This is longer than The Story of an Hour, but still short, and also in some ways not as interesting.

Similar endings though.

Although I guess I completely made up a line about birds? Could’ve sworn it was in there.



25. Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll

Read: April 27 ✿✿✿ Rating: 5 stars

Can’t have one without the other!

For years (7 of them, to be precise), I have bragged about achieving a level of zen unknown to most bookworms: Being able to pick my single favorite book.

But I am only able to do that by cheating, because I have convinced myself that this book is combined with Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to make one (1) book.

I mean, they are combined a lot. To be fair.



26. A Very Nice Girl by Imogen Crimp

Read: April 25-28 ✿✿✿ Rating: 1 star

I bought this HARDCOVER.

NEW.

FULL-PRICED.

AND I HATED IT.

Do you know what kind of emotional and financial pain that is?!



27. Everyone in This Room Will Someday Be Dead by Emily Austin

Read: April 28 ✿✿✿ Rating: 5 stars

Mom, can you come get me? I’m containing multitudes again.

Five star (reread). One star (promising read). Five star (impulse pickup).

And also I cried. Again. Because this book was so sweet and lovely and I didn’t expect it.

What is happening to me.

Who have I become.



28. The Vagina Bible by Jen Gunter

Read: April 26-28 ✿✿✿ Rating: 4 stars

I made an amazing joke in my currently-reading update for this book (okay, since you asked, it was “gotta read the owner’s manual), and I don’t regret it, because it was funny.

But also I a little bit regret it because now everyone thinks I read it as a joke and I was serious about it, and also it was very good and informative, but also approachable?

Sorry, Dr. Jen.



29. Mister Impossible by Maggie Stiefvater

Read: April 29-30 ✿✿✿ Rating: 3 stars

The Raven Cycle (or whatever this spinoff series is) just keeps getting more humiliating to read.

They’re not trendy anymore. Maggie Steifvater is super embarrassing and annoying online. The covers are somehow increasingly awful. This title sucks completely.

And on top of everything, this one wasn’t even very cool or fun.

What are we even doing here. And by we I mean me.



Average Rating

And without further ado!

This month’s average isssss…

3.38!

Not as good as the last two months. But not bad.

Not bad at all.

Posted twice this month!

On a technicality, but stil.

1. March Wrap-Up: Everything is perfect actually

2. Emma…posts too much? I’m starting a book club

And there we have April! A month so good it nearly broke my brain.

There are worse things, I gotta tell you.

How was your April? What was your favorite read? (Or least favorite. I love drama.)

Have you read any of the books I read?

5 thoughts on “April Wrap-Up: Everything’s coming up apocalypse

  1. Madhura says:

    I read the first 2 books in the darker shade of magic series by Schwab and just ughhhhh. I didn’t actually read any other book in april which is surprising for me. And I loved house of hollow…why did you not like it?

    Like

  2. Ally says:

    Exams are killing me so I haven’t been reading all that much, but I DID reread the heartstopper novels in order to binge the new TV show, and it’s so good and faithful!! If anyone needs a pick-me-up I highly recommend it:D. PS: if you want to read the books but don’t want to have to buy/wait in a library queue for them, you can read them for free on webtoons

    Like

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