Well, what an exciting month May has been. Unfortunately this has meant my blog has been a bit neglected, plus some technical issues have meant that I had to write out a quite complicated review three times before I could finally publish it – so again, more time wasted. Oh well. I think I’ve figured out a solution so it shouldn’t be a problem in the future.
*One day I will start a monthly review without an excuse as to why I haven’t been blogging very much (not this month though!)*
May has been the Month Of Summer, meaning the weather has made all my plants go mental. Some things are way ahead of schedule, others just won’t germinate. I’ve managed to secure some space in a state of the art greenhouse and even that hasn’t had much impact. It looks like it’s just going to be one of those years.
Speaking of the crops, we’ve had some pretty devastating news regarding the allotment that we rent. Unfortunately, it seems that the whole site has been put up for sale and the rumour is that the council are going to allow houses to be built on it. This has made me beyond sad and angry so I’m investigating ways to try to fight the planners. As the non-hubs said, “there’s always one wanker who reads the small print…and I am that wanker!”
The house renovation project is s-l-o-w-l-y gaining some momentum; the kitchen is almost fitted and so is the bathroom. Finally! The non-hubs has been tiling the bathroom (again s-l-o-w-l-y) so it actually feels like we’re getting somewhere. We’ve (I’ve) also cleared the front and back gardens and got rid of all the crap lying around – we’ve filled the biggest skip we could hire so full that we’ve had comments from passers by! I’ve also finished painting the front door (at one point blasting it with a hairdryer to dry it enough to be able to shut it and go home). The joys of adulting!
Oh, and we pulled down the “conservatory” which actually turned out to be half a greenhouse:
And we knocked down those breeze block walls too. And bought light fittings. And sorted some flooring. There is still so much to do it just feels never-ending but we are making progress.
Things that have hindered us this month include some delightful rising damp that has appeared on the new plaster. We’re chipping it off to investigate.
Happily, I’ve been out quite a lot this month, even though a very much looked forwards to Eurovision Party failed to materialise. I’ve been out to Warwick Arts Centre twice, once to watch My Dad Wrote a Porno and once to see Ben Folds. MDWAP was hilarious as expected and Ben Folds was brilliant – he’s such a amazing musician. He even got the crowd singing a four part harmony and filmed it on his phone.
I also went for an afternoon tea and tour of Stoneleigh Abbey, which was really lovely and so interesting. Stoneleigh Abbey is apparently what Jane Austen based Mansfield Park on (she gets about a bit – or perhaps all stately homes get to lay claim to her work). This is my mother’s idea of appropriate clothing to wear for a day of walking round the grounds (they’re block heels – walking heels!).
In terms of my blog, I made seven blog posts which is actually quite good going for me. I even did a sort of discussion post about the top 100 stories that shaped the world (I do hate writing those) that literally no one read and appears to have deleted itself. If you didn’t see it, you didn’t miss out on much!
I had a lovely surprise mention in a post called “Bloggers Who Deserve More Attention” by the wonderful Orangutan Librarian who was celebrating three years of being an amazing blogger. I definitely didn’t expect it and I’ve gained quite a few new followers as a result – hello!
I’m still a few weeks behind in my Les Mis read along but that’s only a couple of hours worth of actual reading time, so I’m not stressing too much. I’m one book behind in my Read Harder challenge but again that’s not terrible – I’ll catch up by the end of next month. My ARCs are still three books outstanding so I’ll focus on those for the next week or so.
I wrote six book reviews this month, four of which were solid 4/5 star reviews. That’s pretty unusual for someone as difficult to please as me, so I think May might be my most successful reading month so far! However, and for the first time ever I awarded no stars to a novel- read on to find out why:
The Apollo Illusion by Shari Lopatin: A super fun YA novel that’s pacey, intriguing and unique. Thank you Shari for letting me read it! Four out of five.
Clean by Juno Dawson: A captivating page turner about addiction with great representation, realistic outcomes and characters that will win you over. Loved it. Four out of five.
The Lido by Libby Page: A gorgeous, summery read about female friendship across generations, community and standing up for what you believe in. Perfect for holidays. Four out of five.
Cross Her Heart by Sarah Pinborough: An addictive thriller with an extremely clever, intricately woven plot. You definitely won’t guess the ending! Four out of five.
A Good Time to be a Girl by Helena Morissey: A fairly dull novel about one woman’s idea to get more females into positions on the board of directors. Good for business students but not recommended for anyone else. Two out of five.
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. It’s just an awful, irresponsible way to glamorize suicide. I wavered between being really annoyed and really bored. NO STARS.
So that’s May wrapped up – and I finally have the majority of both my kitchen and bathroom fitted! Hopefully by the end of June I won’t have rising damp any more (a girl can dream!)
How was your May? What will you be up to next month? Let me know in the comments!