Features, Wrap Ups & Hauls

May 2017 Wrap-Up + Book Haul


Goodbye May, and hello June!

My kids are both done with school, so we are officially on summer break in my household.  Ahhhh sweet summertime!  I have been looking forward to summer for what feels like forever.   It’s all pool days, tan lines, and cookouts for the next 2.5 months and I couldn’t be more excited.  By the 2 month mark, I’m sure I’ll be talking about how ready I am for my kids to go back to school, but for now I still have my sanity… well sort of 🙂

Let’s see what I accomplished this month, shall we?


What I read this month

I managed to read ALL the books on my May TBR!  Granted there were only 5 books on my list, but still.  I read a total of 9 books in May.

Here is what I read…


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  The perfect ending to a perfect series.  I don’t even care that some questions were left unanswered.  Anoshe.

» The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  Like many other readers have said, this book is not going to be for everyone.  I would caution people who are easily scandalized against this one.  The topic isn’t gory or gruesome, but it is disturbing.  It is revealed very early in the book (by page 32 I think?) so at least you will know early on if you can handle the subject matter or not.  I will say that the author doesn’t get too graphic with it, so it wasn’t too hard to stomach.

Full review to come.

» Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston


5-Star Rating System

*3.5 stars*

Summary of feelings:  Without a doubt, this book is beautifully written.  The audiobook is narrated by Ruby Dee, whose narration made the characters come to life.  While I enjoyed the storyline, I often felt my mind wandering while I was listening, which is a tell tale sign to me that the writing was a little dense for my liking.  Also, there was one point in this book where the story shifts focus from Janie, and instead moves to her husband Joe, which I didn’t care for.  It felt as if Janie disappeared from the story for a bit.  This isn’t to say that I wouldn’t recommend this book, nor that I didn’t enjoy it, I just had a few issues with it.

» The House by the Lake by Ella Carey


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings: This book did not work for me, which is a shame because the concept and storyline COULD have made for a great read.  This is one of those books that alternates between past and present, where the characters in the present storyline are trying to figure out the mystery of the past.   The romance in this book, in both past and present, was flat and unbelievable.  But most of all, the climax was rushed and didn’t evoke the feelings it should have.

Full review to come.

» Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  I am taking part in the Anne of Green Gables Read Along (#AnneReadAlong2017).  May was the kick off to this read along with the first book in the series, Anne of Green Gables.  This was my first time reading this classic, and now I can count myself among the Anne of Green Gables fandom.  If I had to describe my feelings about this book in one word, it would be enchanting.

I wrote 2 posts for the #AnneReadAlong2017, which you can read here → 5 Reasons Why You Should Read Anne of Green Gables + My AoGG Aesthetic #AnneReadAlong2017 and here → Things That Made Me Cringe While Reading Anne of Green Gables #AnneReadAlong2017

» Gone to Drift by Diana McCaulay


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  This was a book I requested last year during the “NetGalley Request Binge of 2016” that I never got around to reading.  I think the reason I requested this one was because the cover gave me Island of the Blue Dolphins vibes.  While this was nothing like Island of the Blue Dolphins, this was a very interesting YA novel about a boy’s quest to find out what happened to his beloved Grandfather who never returns from a fishing trip.   I really enjoyed that this book was set in a fishing village in Jamaica, where fishing is the backbone of the town.

Full review to come.

» Anne of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  Since I loved Anne of Green Gables so much, I decided to go ahead and read the second book, Anne of Avonlea.  As I mentioned above, I am taking part in the Anne of Green Gables Read Along (#AnneReadAlong2017), which the ultimate goal of is to read the entire series in the remaining months of 2017.  I am not sure I am going to be able to achieve this, but I’m going to give it a go I think.  Anne of Avonlea gave us a whole new cast of lovable characters, BUT if I am being honest I didn’t love it as much as the first book.  I’m not sure if it is due to the fact that Anne is growing up, or if no other book in the series will ever live up to the first… I still really enjoyed the second book.

» The Double Blind by Chris Bohjalian


5-Star Rating System

*3.5 stars*

Summary of feelings:  This one was so hard to rate because I really liked the concept, but felt that the execution was a little messy at times and the ending was far too abrupt.  It made for a wonderful book club discussion because it tackled topics like mental illness & homelessness.

» The History Major by Michael Phillip Cash


5-Star Rating System

Summary of feelings:  I contemplated DNFing this book so many times which is crazy because there are only 130ish pages… I may have muttered the words “What the hell is going on here?” a few times while reading The History Major.  This book felt like an acid trip… and not a fun one.  Could it be possible that I just didn’t “get it”?  Maybe.  I don’t think that is the case though.

Full review to come.



Book Reviews: loveandyoucov

Book Review: love, and you by Gretchen Gomez #Poetry

BeautifullyDiff Cov

Kids’ Corner: Beautifully Different by Dana Salim + Author Q&A + #Giveaway

*Giveaway has ended*


Book Review: The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock

Other Posts:


April 2017 Book Haul


May 2017 TBR


Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite 2017 New Release Book Covers (Thus Far)


Book Blogger Recs: Bloggers to Follow for Thriller/Suspense/Crime Readers


Anne of Green Gables Read Along 2017 (Hosted by Jane @Greenish Bookshelf)


Book Event: SOKY Book Festival (2017) + Book Haul + #GIVEAWAY

*Giveaway has ended*


Book Blogging Babble: What Makes You Click (or NOT Click) That Follow Button?


5 Reasons Why You Should Read Anne of Green Gables + My AoGG Aesthetic #AnneReadAlong2017

CringeWorthyMoments in AoGG

Things That Made Me Cringe While Reading Anne of Green Gables #AnneReadAlong2017


Book Haul

After the insanity that was my April Book Haul, I was able to control myself a little better this month.  I ended up only purchasing 2 books in May, receiving 3 books as gifts, and won 1 book in a giveaway.

AnnMarieBookMail*Huge thank you to Ann Marie @Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine for sending me these first 3 books.

» Equal of the Sun by Anita Amirrezvani

» We Were the Lucky Ones by Georgia Hunter

» The Zookeeper’s Wife by Diane Ackerman


» Heir of Illaria by Dyan Chick

*Giveaway win that was hosted by hosted by Stephanie @TeacherofYA!


» The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco


» Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher



Which books did you read this month?

Have you read any of the books I read or hauled this month?  If so, what did you think?

Did you buy any books?  If so, which ones?

Comment bellow and let me know 🙂

14 thoughts on “May 2017 Wrap-Up + Book Haul”

  1. Great post, Amanda. Looks like you have a fab May. I managed 7 books last month which is my lowest this year but I’m still very pleased. I’m so glad that you enjoyed A Conjuring of Light, I thought it was incredible and already fancy a reread! I’m really excited for Our Dark Duet which comes out in a couple of weeks, I need more Schwab in my life!


  2. You killed it this past month! I read so little. I have been experiencing more down time than I care to admit, but I am slowly exploring the world of audio due to this. Anne is of course a favorite of mine 🙂 I also read the Bone Witch, but unfortunately while I adored the concept, a lot was lost with the amount of detail description in the book for me. I hope you enjoy! Enjoy the tan lines haha. As a red head, I know nothing about them 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Danielle! I hope you are enjoying the world of audiobooks. I discovered audiobooks last year and love being able to read so many more books this way!

      I’ve seen some mixed reviews for The Bone Witch. I’ve read that the writing is a little dense. Hopefully it won’t be an issue for me…

      I have some red in my hair (had red hair when I was little) and freckles, so when I say “tan lines” I really just mean less white and more pinkish 🤣

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Way to go on a productive May! That’s awesome you read everything on your monthly TBR!

    I just finished Anne of Avonlea and really enjoyed it. I try to keep Anne of Green Gables in a separate category in my mind–since it’s one of my all time favorites. If I compare the rest of the series to it, I think they will all come up short. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. ACOL! Ah can we scream together about it now *commences screaming* HOW GREAT WAS THE ENDING AND LILA AND KELL AND EVERYONE XD

    Looks like you had a great month Amanda and I’m ready to get on a plane and go to your side of the world, it’s winter here and just imagining tanlines is making me extremely jealous while I type this wearing a million layers and near a heater!
    Hope you have an amazing June and awesome summer holiday

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so sad I’m done with the Shades of Magic trilogy 😭 I never wanted it to end!!! I cannot wait to see what Schwab comes out with next! Actually… I need to read her other books. Have you read her other books? Where should I start?

      Here’s hoping for a mild winter for you my friend! I’ll be thinking about you when I’m by the pool tomorrow 😜

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Id suggest Vicious it’s her adult that works as a standalone (there is a second being published next year) and really gets into the humans being monsters and if anyone’s really a hero or we’re all just villains of varying degrees. It’s not blow your mind amazing but I loved it and the Gray characters, Also humans getting superpowers is always fun!

        This savage song is good too but I didn’t love it as much as everyone else(I think I hyped it up to much).


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