Monthly Themes: May & June (sort of)

June 2020 is a month I’m not going to soon forget. Because of this, I never quite found the right time to put together a post looking back at my May theme, next/first book in a series, so I’ll do that now.

The June theme however didn’t really come together, so I’ve decided that in July I will focus on both Indigenous authors and comics/graphic novels.

I completely read three books for my May theme, which in turn got me caught up with two series I was in the middle of previously. And then I started book 1 of a different series, though at least the next book in said series isn’t actually out yet so I’m not behind (or at least I won’t be when I actually finish reading it … yes, it’s been in progress for over a month, because June).

The first two books I read are both in Emma Newman’s Planetfall series: After Atlas and Atlas Alone (books 2 and 4 in the series respectively). This series is really interesting, in that it’s written as a collection of standalone novels set in the same world. I actually read book 3, Before Mars, first and adored it so much I immediately went out and got the others. The two Atlas books are more connected than some of the others, so I’m glad I read them together (and I do recommend reading After Atlas before Atlas Alone, if you can). What I really love about both of them is how Newman crafts a really compelling mystery/thriller in a science fiction world. And given where book 4 ended, I eagerly await seeing what the next book is about, though given that there was a break between the Atlas books, I wouldn’t be surprised if I still don’t have closure on how it ended (be prepared for some brutal endings with this series).

The third book I completed for the theme was the last book I hadn’t read in Tessa Dare’s Spindle Cove series, Any Duchess Will Do. This book surprised me with how much I absolutely adored it. Dare is one of my favourite romance authors, so I expected to like this one, but the synopsis didn’t pique my interest as much as some of her other titles. This is the main reason I didn’t read it sooner, despite having owned a copy for a while at this point. But it was more than worth the wait, as Pauline Simms rocketed her way up to my favourite heroine list. I just adored everything about her. The hero was also pretty great and his secret backstory absolutely heartbreaking, but this is and always will be Pauline’s book and I look forward to re-reading it many times in the future.

Finally, I started reading Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir, the first book in the Locked Tomb trilogy. This book is great but also pretty dense, which is the main reason I haven’t yet finished it as I’ve found myself needing lighter reading fare. But I will try my best to read it this month, alongside my other reading, since book two, Harrow the Ninth, is coming out in August and I already have it pre-ordered, because the black-edged pages for the first edition proved to be an excellent marketing gimmick.

Finally, I am now only caught up with my Goodreads challenge. However, I suspect that a month of comics/graphic novels will get me a comfortable buffer again.

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