Sunday, May 11, 2014

#NewToMeMay Week 2 Update

#NewToMeMay is a reading challenge that I'm organising and taking part in during the month of May. The aim is to read as many books by new-to-me authors and to be a little more adventurous in which books I'm picking up. Bonus points go towards books that have been on my shelves for quite awhile. If you are taking part in this, do let me know! 

Week 1 Update

Week 2 Update 

For my second week of the #NewToMeMay challenge, I did fairly well and read a total of 6 books and read another book that does not count for the challenge (ooh, cheating already!) It was lovely discovering so many new authors this past week.  

First off, I finished If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch which I'd started in Week 1.  It was pretty good. I kind of wanted it to go a little deeper into the main character's relationships with everyone in her life, but I did mostly enjoy it and I did well up with tears at one point.

Then I picked up The Summer Of Skinny Dipping by Amanda Howells which is a book that I've had on my shelves for a very, very long time. It always felt like a book that needed to be read during the summer, at the beach.  I decided that in bed with sunshine streaming through my bedroom window would probably be the best back-up plan.  And this book was okay. Again, I felt only surface feelings for this book.  I felt like I could have cared more about the main character and all of her significant relationships ... but I didn't. So this one fell a little bit flat for me, unfortunately.

If I'm honest, it was around this point in the month (roughly a week into May) that I started feeling a little bit cramped, reading-wise.  I didn't want to just choose from the two shelves of books I had, I wanted FREEDOM and MORE CHOICE.  So I bought an e-book of The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski and read that. To be honest, I didn't know a great deal about it before I bought and read it, but I like doing that sometimes.  I thought this book would be a fantasy book but it didn't feel very fantasy to me. I did enjoy it though. I really liked the relationship that formed between Kestrel and Arin and I loved all of the military strategy and secrecy. I thought it was well done and I'm definitely looking forward to reading the rest of the trilogy.

Next, I picked up Pale by Chris Wooding. This was one of the books sent to me recently by the lovely people of Barrington Stoke.  I mostly picked this up because it's by a British author and because I have a goal now to read 100 books by British authors by the end of the year. Wish me luck!  I did enjoy Pale, I thought it had a great message about friendship in particular using bullying and prejudice as the backdrop of this story. It was interesting. I had never really heard of Chris Wooding before but he is the author of many books and I might just have to look into that...

I also picked up Tilly's Promise by Linda Newbery, another Barrington Stoke book. This was was about a volunteer nurse during World War One who has her soldier sweetheart make a promise that just isn't possible for him to keep.  I really liked it. I nearly cried twice and I think that's a pretty amazing feat for a book that has fewer than 100 pages.  I've really been enjoying the WWI books that I've read this year and I'm on the lookout for more now. WWI has really captured my attention!

And the sixth and final book and author that I discovered this past week was Summer's Shadow by Anna Wilson. I believe (?) this is Anna Wilson's first book that she's published that is for a younger-than-YA audience? It was a lovely book, about a girl torn up with grief over her mother who has recently died and who is sent to live with unknown relatives in Cornwall. It takes the friendship of a local boy, Zach, to help her to get through this difficult time as she works through her feelings and tries to figure out the secrets and mystery behind why Summer has ended up where she has.  It was rather sweet! 

I've also started but not yet finished Tape by Steven Camden and Boys Don't Knit by TS Easton, books I hope to finish and tell you all about in my Week 3 Update!

Week 1 total: 1 new author (Jane Casey)
Week 2 total: 6 new authors (Emily Murdoch, Amanda Howells, Marie Rutkoski, Chris Wooding, Linda Newbery, Anna Wilson) 

Have you discovered any new-to-you authors recently? 


  1. Well done Michelle! I really want to read Pale by Chris Wooding. I have read more of his work and I enjoy his writing. I'm enjoying discovering new authors this month. Whilst I am reading quite freely this month, I'm making sure I discover new authors in my freebie month too!

    1. Thanks, Chrissi :) I'm quite curious about some of Chris Wooding's other stories after reading Pale! You'll have to let me know where I should start. And I'm so glad you've joined in with this. I'm definitely having a freebie month once this is all over though...!

  2. It's such a shame The Summer of Skinny Dipping didn't blow you awa - I thought it sounded like so much fun!

    1. It has the potential to be really good ... I just didn't think it carried through enough on certain story lines unfortunately :(


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