Checking In! April 2021

A Quiet Month With (Mostly) Serious Books – April Wrap Up

Posted May 5, 2021 by Amber in Checking In / 0 Comments


Bon martin, mes dames et monsieurs et tout les personnes.

Not gonna lie.  March, April?  They were months.  I’m just going to be honest and straight up say that I slowed down even more on my reading compared to usual, and it should surprise no one that I did no writing.  That said, it was more or less what I anticipated from the month.  I needed a do-nothing break and while I wouldn’t say I feel rejuvenated, I would say that I feel less trampled.  But that’s enough of that – I have an upcoming post with an apology/explanation for next week.

Maintenant, let’s look at les livres dans avril.

All the things I’ve been reading

I expected my numbers to drop a bit this month and they have.  It’s okay.  I’m also acknowledging with myself that I read a lot more serious books in April – the ones that were lighter, I ingested more quickly.  I would also like to point out that while Baby & Solo dropped a review this month… I actually read it a little while ago.  HOWEVER.  I did read an ARC in April!  It was completely unexpected – I requested it months and months and months ago and had forgotten about it since I’m slowly stepping back a bit from Netgalley.  Anywho, you should be seeing a review drop for Small Favors by Erin A. Craig in a couple months.  It was an honest delight.

6 books found
Baby and Solo by Lisabeth Posthuma


Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig


Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color by Andrea J. Ritchie



The Stone Sky by N. K. Jemisin




This month, I read monstly adventurous books (surprise!)  For a little while earlier in the month, “challenging” was the winning mood stat, which would have been a change!  Pacing-wise, it was a three-way tie between fastmedium, and slow, but the non-audiobooks I read were all between 300-499 pages.  While I continue to read mostly fiction, I did sneak a non-fiction book in!  My most read genre in April was young adult, with fantasy and science fiction tying for second and having one read for each of the other categories hit.  My average rating was 4.46 stars so I can tell you with confidence that despite whatever enjoyment level or speed of reading I had…. all the books I read were quality.

My favorite physical copy I read in April was Death Prefers Blondes.  I feel like I should be saying Invisible No More and I’m going to be honest – that book was amazing and heavy and important,  But the nature of he topic… it just wasn’t… enjoyable, y’know?  And Death Prefers Blondes was and I had SUCH low expectations for it that I came off that book delighted. My favorite audiobook was, um, The Stone Sky, I guess?  Feeling pretty meh about my audiobooks this month.  Also, kicking myself because I have all of 20 minutes left to listen to of Becoming and if I’d finished it yesterday I would have matched the number of books I read in April 2020.

Readathons & Reading Challenges

Only two hardcopy books this month.  The third one I picked up – Special Topics in Calamity Physics – is pretty dense.  I like it, but it’s a slow read to be really immersed and I am only about 25% through it so far.  It’s probably going to knock into my May hardcopy as well, if I’m being honest.

2 books found
Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig


Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color by Andrea J. Ritchie


I kept both of these!  What was funny, though, is I had every expectation these would be quick read and donate books.  Invisible No More ended up far too impressionable for that, and Death Prefers Blondes was unique and fun.

Psych Reading Challenge

I’m sneaking ever closer to completing the Psych Reading Challenge!  While I only read two hardcopy books this month, they were both ones I’d picked up for the challenge!

? #1. Invisible No More – Santa Barbara Police – A ACAB Non-Fiction Novel
? #13. Death Prefers Blondes – Pierre Despereaux – Read a Book With a Heist

Total Pineapples: ?????????????

That leaves me with only two books remaining!  One – Exit Pursued By A Bear – is my next hardcopy read when I finish Special Topics in Calamity Physics and is a short book so I 100% believe I’ll get to it next month.  However, before I get to the final book, Illusive, I want to read The Gilded Ones. 🙂

Magic and Mischief on the Blog

As y’all know, I took April off from posting any robust content.  I needed the time to re-evaluate how I run this blog and making sure I created a realistic longterm plan for myself.  I’ll talk about this in depth next Wednesday, but for today I’ll just say I’m reducing my discussion-esque content down to once a week.  In doing that, I’ll be cutting out some “fluff” posts like tags (unless I really like the tag or it’s sort of a tradition – they’re going to be super rare, though).

The only other thing I have to add on the blog front is that Marisha Pessl has been added to the Problematic Authors page (Code Yellow).

Adventures in the real world!

While I haven’t been writing many posts or reading many books, what I have been doing is gaming.

I joke that when I go deep into video games, it’s a bad sign that heavy depression is setting in.  While this is sometimes true, I had a secondary reason this time, and that is I’m helping organize a massive gaming event for the company I work at in November.  I’m definitely in over my head but I’m really excited about it and I have an excellent support crew and it’s gonna be great.

So what have I been playing?

Firstly, I stream Stardew Valley for a couple hours every Sunday (10am ET) so if you ever wanted to come hang out, that would be super cool!  Both lurking and chatting is very welcomed.  I’ve also been playing Planet Zoo and I’m currently building up my funds so I can expand my franchise to another zoo but actually have the funds to make it beautiful.

Finally, while I’m still playing Animal Crossing, I’m not playing it quite as often.  I did pick up the new Pokemon Snap game and color me delighted – I think it’s a great homage to the original game I grew up playing and builds on it very nicely.

What’s Coming Next?

Next month you’re actually going to get some content from me! I have the posts already scheduled for Wednesdays for the next month-and-a-half-ish.  As far as reviews you can expect… I”m very nearly done with Becoming so that review will drop in a couple of days.  Otherwise I think Special Topics in Calamity Physics and Exit Pursued by a Bear are good bets for next month.  My next audiobook read, Esperanza Rising, will certainly make an appearance as well.

Finally, I just want to thank y’all for being here and sticking with me, as well as all your encouraging words.  I appreciate you all.


What did everyone do this month?  Did you get a lot of reading done?  Did you start on a new WIP?  Did you go on any grand (or small!) adventures?  I want to hear all about your experiences – let me know in the comments!

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