Hello, everyone! Today, I come to you with my first wrap-up in a couple of months. I know I’ve been severely neglecting my blog the past couple of months (the past forever, more like it), but I’m determined to put more of an effort now that my summer vacation has begun. With that said, let’s jump into the wrap up!
P E R S O N A L
So… I’m now a senior in college, le gasp. How did this happen? It was only yesterday that I was graduating from high school, and now I’m three-quarters of my way through university. It’s wild! I’m not going to lie – knowing that graduation is pretty much upon me, and this is my last year in what was supposed to be the “best four years of my life” is nerve-wracking. I don’t think I fully took advantage of the prestige of this city that I live in and the university I’m so privileged to attend, and I’m beginning to feel like I only have this one year left to fix it all – and that’s frightening, but maybe it will push me to do things I was too afraid to do before.
My freshman year of college was a lot of fun; I made friends, I was outgoing, and I was attending class and getting really good grades, and then after that, everything kind of fell apart. I don’t talk about it much, but I was overcome with social anxiety. Just going to class put me in such a dark place, and I was missing sessions, so my grades suffered – my third semester in college was… horrifying. My grades fell to a point where my school had to reach out and ask me to explain what was happening. Ever since, it hasn’t been quite up to the mark, but I’ve been steadily doing better. But that one semester made my GPA suffer quite a bit, and I feel like I really need to give 120% in my last year to come out on top of the game.
You might also remember that I was considering medicine, more specifically psychiatry, as an option for my career, and I’m still up-in-the-air about that. Which is another thing that’s messing with my head because I feel like time is running out, and I need to just take a breath and make a decision. But my career isn’t something I can take lightly, so how can I just wing it without knowing what I want? I’m trying to take this summer slow so I can figure out what I want to do, and how I want to proceed with, what may be, the rest of my life. If anything, the entire process has given me so much appreciation and respect for the people who do what they love, as well as people who set out on a path and follow it through no matter what. Major kudos.
In May, I also had an interview of an internship I’ll be doing next year as a major requirement for my school. I’ll be filming therapist-client sessions at the leading music therapy center in the United States (if not the world), as well as learning about new research in the field, and shadowing the people who conduct it. I was given several different options to choose from, and music therapy was definitely at the top of my list, and I’m incredibly excited that I got the ‘job!’
R E A D I N G
May was a decent reading month for me considering how terrible the months before it were. I didn’t read much, but the books I read were mostly wonderful, and I know I added a couple of books to my best of 2017 list that’ll come at the end of the year. Three out of five of the books I read have reviews, which I’ll link, and one review is coming up very soon!
W H E N D I M P L E M E T R I S H I B Y S A N D H Y A M E N O N // 3 . 5 S T A R S
When Dimple Met Rishi was one of my most anticipated reads of the year, and I definitely think that my expectations for this book didn’t work in the book’s favor. Although it’s a perfect summer contemporary novel with incredible Indian representation and fun Bollywood flair and fluid writing, my main issue lay with the main character’s behavior in the romance – I expand more in my review. It’s still a book that I would recommend to anyone looking for a fluffy, romantic, fast-paced summer contemporary, because in that sense, it might be one of the better books I’ve read.
Q U I N S E Y W O L F E ‘ S G L A S S V A U L T B Y C A N D A C E R O B I N S O N //
2 . 5 S T A R S
This was a book that started off with a whimper, and ended with a bang. The first 25% were rather dull, uneventful and I almost DNF’d it considering some of the problematic language thrown in, and the tokenism of a Middle Eastern character, but while these issues weren’t rectified (at least not in this first book), the plot really took off after the first quarter. When the gruesome, gory horror retellings were thrown into the mix with well-balanced romance and intense creativity, I began to enjoy the book a lot more.
U N D E R R O S E – T A I N T E D S K I E S B Y L O U I S E G O R N A L L // 4 . 5 S T A R S
I think my review does a better job of explaining all my many, many thoughts and feelings about this wonderful, beautiful piece of art, but I’ll try to summarize. I basically loved everything about this book – from the well-developed, flawed characters to the well-rounded focus on family, friendship, romance and introspection, the writing, the world-building and the empathy this book offers even while discussing such specific, unique situations. The book does so much right, and almost nothing wrong, and I just really would love everyone to pick it up!
E X I T W E S T B Y M O H S I N H A M I D // 4 . 5 S T A R S
Exit West was a bit of a gamble for me; I haven’t read Mohsin Hamid’s other work, really, except for a couple chapters of How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia and I truly wasn’t a big fan of his writing. But I loved the movie The Reluctant Fundamentalist, which is based off a novel of his, so I thought I’d give this a go – and I was blown away, and there’s no other way to explain what I went through while reading this. I was so moved by its subtleties, its compassionate, entirely humane nature of the themes, the realities of the characters, and the quiet power of his writing. Such an incredible, profound, poignant read that’s both timely and timeless, and I cannot recommend it enough. Watch out for my review!
W O R L D A F T E R ( A N G E L F A L L # 2 ) B Y S U S A N E E // 4 S T A R S
I read Angelfall last summer, and I honestly wasn’t the biggest fan – I thought it was alright, but my main issue lay with the romance, and the slow-paced nature of it. But World After completely took me by surprise – it was such a step-up, and while I didn’t feel anything for Penryn and Raffe in the first book, I was smitten with both of them – individually and together – in the sequel. I have a lot of thoughts about the intricacies and genius of this series, but I’ll say more in a trilogy review after I’m finished reading this third book!
M U S I C
I didn’t watch any movies in May, and basically stayed away from new TV too because of finals, and what not, but I’ve been listening to music non-stop for a few weeks now. It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of music, and I enjoy putting my Spotify on shuffle and discovering new stuff. Here are some favorites.
G A L L A N T – B O U R B O N
I’ve heard Gallant’s music before – I remember listening to “Weight of Gold” last year, and I fell in love with his voice, but I never looked further. But I pretty much had his debut album “Ology” on repeat the past month. His falsetto, the chill and sultry, slick vibe of his music is perfect for rainy nights. For real. Give it a go.
C A L V I N H A R R I S – S L I D E F T . F R A N K O C E A N & M I G O S
This is just a link to the snippet, but the song’s available on Spotify. I’m pretty sure this is going to be the go-to summer song for me. It’s so smooth, and Frank’s voice can lull me to my death and I’d go happily, lol. I also saw him walking around in the Lower East Side, and listen, he’s so freaking beautiful!
P O R T U G A L . T H E M A N – F E E L I T S T I L L
Ahhh, I can’t explain how happy this song makes me feel, even though it’s not really a happy song if you listen to the lyrics. But the beat, and his voice makes it so… bop-y. LISTEN TO IT.
So that’s that for my May wrap-up! I hope your month was a good one, and you reached all the goals that you had for it. Let me know what your favorite book of the month was. Mine was definitely either Under Rose Tainted Skies or Exit West. Until next time, thanks for stopping by and happy reading!