May wrap-up!

The end of another month has come and gone, which means it’s time for another wrap-up! May was definitely a better reading month than April and March, though I’m still not entirely out of the reading slump yet.

Still, I do need to thank my good friend from over at Samen Helen for making me read A Thousand Splendid Suns when I didn’t feel like anything at all. It put me way back on track. Thanks!

Over the course of May I somehow managed to read 7 books, which might actually be a new record! I do probably need to add here though, that there were at least 2 books that I finished in about 2 hours, and a couple of books that I’d put on hold previously and was actually about halfway through already.

It’s also a fairly culturally diverse list, with the US, the UK, the Netherlands, Iceland and Afghanistan represented. 4 out of 7 books have been written by women, although unfortunately there’s no LGBTQ representation whatsoever.

Overall, everything considered, I’m pretty happy with this reading month, and I can’t wait to see what June is going to bring!

But for now, let’s see what I read in May:

1. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Ransom Riggs, 4/5 stars) 
The first installment to what I refer to as the “miss peregrine books”. I raced through it, and although it didn’t grip me 100% it was still a very fun and interesting read. Book #2 is currently on its way to me, so I definitely liked it enough to continue the series!

2. Frankenstein – 1818 text (Mary Shelley, 3/5 stars)
I’ll readily admit this book took me much longer than I anticipated. I actually put it on hold for a while when I was almost halfway through – turned out I was mere pages away from where it got interesting, and once I picked it back up I got through it relatively quickly. It’s an alright book, I guess. An interesting story, though not quite enough to really keep me engaged and focused.

3. Nemesis (Agatha Christie, 2/5 stars) 
The 5th Christie book I’ve read, and unfortunately also the least interesting one. Still alright, but also predictable and slow to start.

4. Nooit de Buren Bijten (Paul van Loon, 4/5 stars) 
A Dutch children’s book I still remembered from my own childhood (the main reason I bought it). It’s still super funny, even as an adult. I know now where some of my weird humour has come from! (I was an avid Paul van Loon reader as a child.) I don’t know if there’s an English translation available of this one, but if there is I definitely recommend it.

5. A Thousand Splendid Suns (Khaled Hosseini, 5/5 stars)
Gosh, what a beautiful, heartbreaking book. I read the whole thing in about 3 days, hardly putting it down. Beautifully written, not at all what I expected it to be like but surprising in the best way.

6. Boven in de Stad (Liedewij Loorbach, 2/5 stars) 
A simple Dutch non-fiction book I picked up at a discount, about gardening for millennials who live in cities and have limited space and knowledge. Quirky writing and interesting design can’t save it from being essentially redundant. Trying to reach a digital generation by publishing the most basic of basic information in paper is a missed chance at something that could’ve been interesting if the information had had a different angle. Alas.

7. Burial Rites (Hannah Kent, 2/5 stars)
The story of the last woman in Iceland to get death penalty. It was heralded as a brilliant and beautiful book, though I feel like I might’ve read a different book after all. The one I read was gloomy, slow, predictable, and not very interesting. Not sure if I’m even going to keep it on my shelves, to be honest.

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