What I Read in May

Saturday, June 1, 2019


OK, bear with me: I read a lot of murdery stuff in May, which I know isn't for everyone. I'm still chuggin' away at my Harry Potter reread, but I got in a few more books last month, too, namely because I blew through a few true crime audiobooks while I traveled. So like I said: lotsa murdery stuff.

That said, I have a ton of unread hardcover fiction books here at home, so I'm trying not to borrow or buy anything new until I've made it through at least a few of them in the coming summer months - which means June should be a much less crime-heavy reading month for me. If true crime isn't your jam, don't give up on my reviews yet!

Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Oh, how I loved this book. It was a bit of a Sliding Doors, choose-your-own-adventure-style story: In the beginning, Hannah has just moved home to Las Angeles, & she goes to a party with her best friend. Does she go home with her high school sweetheart, or leave him at the party? The book follows those two choices & the vastly different lives that emerge from each decision. In the end, this book had me feeling a whole lot of feelings, such that I'm working on an entirely separate blog post about them. ★★★★★

Chase Darkness with Me: How One True Crime Writer Started Solving Murders by Billy Jensen
I listened to this one on audiobook, in keeping with my newfound interested in listening to nonfiction audiobooks that feel like podcasts. Jensen, a longtime true crime investigative journalist, has a podcast, The Murder Squad: Jensen & Holes, which is how I learned about his book. He helped solve multiple cases that didn't have his name publicly attached to them - then helped finish the late Michelle McNamara's book about the Golden State Killer, I'll Be Gone in the Dark. Now, his podcast empowers citizen sleuths to help solve crimes. ★★★★☆

Evil Has A Name: The Untold Story of the Golden State Killer Investigation by Paul Holes, Jim Clemente, & Peter McDonnell
This one is actually like a long podcast - such that I don't know that should count as a book. Full of interviews in addition to narration by author & investigator Paul Holes, it isn't available in text-only format, & it wouldn't even work that way. I feel weird including it here, but it cost me an Audible credit, so it must count? Holes (also of The Murder Squad) was the lead investigator on the Golden State Killer case, & this audiobook is his personal story - a fascinating companion to both Jensen's & McNamara's. ★★★★★

Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
Unpopular opinion: I don't like Sirius as much as most people do. He was a great friend to James & Lily, he loves Harry deeply, & he's committed to justice & rightness, but... man, he's also annoying. He's whiny & moody & more than a little bossy. And though I hated when he died, I wished I had liked him more before he did. Is that terrible? That's terrible. I know. I'm still giving this book five stars, though, because Harry Potter. ★★★★★

Stay Sexy & Don't Get Murdered: The Definitive How-To Guide by Karen Kilgariff & Georgia Hardstark
I requested this from my library as soon as it was announced, so I was first in line when it came in. What a joyous day! This joint memoir by my favorite podcasters isn't about true crime so much as its about making mistakes, righting wrongs, finding yourself, & seeking to live a happy, authentic life. Maybe that makes it a self-help book, but I appreciated its realness: drug problems, eating disorders, bad relationships, soul-sucking desk jobs, &, my favorite, emo music. ★★★★☆

The Demon Next Door by Bryan Burrough
Another Audible original, this one, too, was more podcast than book, but it a fascinating & short listen nonetheless. Burrough, already a bestselling author, tells of his discovery that his small Texas hometown bore a serial killer, vicious rapist & murderer Danny Corwin. Why did the local church & media try to overlook & cover up Corwin's early signs of violence? Burrough examines how small-town politics enabled a monster to live - & kill - among them. ★★★★☆

Tell me what you're reading, then add me on Goodreads to keep in touch & see what I've read in months past. You can also follow my bookstagram account!

My "What I Read in..." posts include Amazon affiliate links to the titles I discuss. If you buy a book using one of these links, I will receive a small percentage of commission. Please don't feel any obligation to use these links, but if you do, it will help me buy more books.

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