Friday, 30 April 2021

Month in Review: April


CW: this post will briefly discuss intrusive thoughts/OCD 

April was.... a month. There were a lot of ups and a lot of downs, but I've made it to the end! And that's all that counts. 

What I Read: 

Rain is Not My Indian Name by: Cynthia Leitich Smith: 4/5 stars 

Happily Ever Afters by: Elise Bryant: 5/5 stars 

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by: Suzanne Collins: 3.5/5 stars 

Loveboat, Taipei by: Abigail Hing Wen: 4/5 stars 

The Tower of Nero by: Rick Riordan: 3/5 stars 

The Moonflower Murders by: Anthony Horowitz: 4/5 stars 

The Left Hand of Darkness by: Ursula K. Le Guin: 2.5/5 stars 

Anne of Green Gables Books 2, 3, and 4 by: Lucy Maud Montgomery: Avg. rating: 3/5 stars 

Lore by: Alexandra Bracken: 2/5 stars 

Favourite book: It obviously has to be Happily Ever Afters by: Elise Bryant! I got this recommendation from booktube and I loved it. It's about a bi-racial girl who writes fluffy rom-coms, but struggles to finds her words when she moves to a prestigious art school. It had great representation, the love story was so well developed, and it just made me feel validated as well. 

Side note, but I did expect The Tower of Nero to be my favourite of this month, as it was my most anticipated read of this year. I was so hyped to see where the Camp Half Blood series would end after loving it for more than ten years. But, it fell flat. Review to come :( 

What I Blogged: 

I really loved sharing a recommendation list for My Favourite Romantic Books by Asian Authors. Most of the rom-coms I love are from Asian authors as I feel like I can relate to them, so it was nice to share some of my faves. 

Favourite Blog Posts of the Month: 

Veronika shares her Thoughts on the Shadow and Bone Adaptation 

Sabrina gets Personalized Recommendations from The Storygraph 

Greg rants a bit in Sunday Post (but it was a very well thought out and I think a necessary rant) 

Life Stuff: 

Life was rough this month! I had a few days of quite intense panic attacks brought on by my harm intrusive thoughts, which was unexpected and also I hadn't experienced them this bad since I first got diagnosed with OCD over a year ago. I talked with my therapist and she suggested readjusting medication. Long story short I am now on an anti-psychotic drug which I think is helping, but it also makes me really sleepy so that is something to contend with. I do think there is a stigma around medication and especially around anti-psychotics, but I am willing to change the narrative. I do think for my OCD anti-psychotics could be very helpful, and I hate that some people are so anti-medication. Do what makes you get better! But speaking of getting better, I am getting better. Haven't had a panic attack in about a week. Like I said before, I am pretty tired now, but I think I just need to get used to the medication so we are pushing on! 

This month wasn't all bad. I got a job at a freelance writing agency which is fun. It's nice that I can pick my projects depending on how busy I am, so I am in control. I am happy that I'll have something to occupy me during the summer, especially since my sister who I usually hang out with also got a job with the government!! That is major good news because it is right in the field she is interested in, so that was also nice to celebrate this month. 

I watched the whole of the Shadow and Bone tv show in about 24 hours, and I l LOVED it. It has definitely inspired me to re-read Six of Crows. The characters, the acting, the costumes, everything was just so well done. Now I'm setting my eyes on The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. 

I'm also starting to work on my upcoming MA degree now that I'm done undergrad. Exciting changes are coming! 

In random news, I'm getting my wisdom teeth out on Wednesday. I've never had to be sedated before so I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous, but it should be fine. They have been hurting me so I just want them out at this point. But this is also to say that I'm not sure if I'll post next week, depending on how I'm feeling. 

Anyways, that was my month! The good, the bad, and the in-betweens. I'm hoping for more sunshine and some more wisdom (see what I did there?) in May. 

How was your April? 

Emily @ Paperback Princess


  1. "Long story short I am now on an anti-psychotic drug which I think is helping, but it also makes me really sleepy so that is something to contend with. [...] Like I said before, I am pretty tired now, but I think I just need to get used to the medication so we are pushing on!"
    I'm sorry to hear that you suffered from panic attacks! Though I'm relieved that the meds are working. I hope you get used to them soon, because it's not the best of experiences when you only feel like sleeping and have to trudge through the day instead.

    "I got a job at a freelance writing agency which is fun."
    Oh, I'm envious now! How does it work? What are you writing about?

    Good luck with getting your wisdom teeth out! I didn't have to do that, so I don't know if it hurts...but nowadays, I think drugs are pretty advanced.

    1. Thank you Roberta :) I'm now on a strict sleeping schedule where I always force myself to get up at a specific time. It helps me to not feel the need to sleep into the afternoon.

      Freelance writing is pretty fun! How it works is that I work for an agency that has a list of writing projects that people want to be written. I can pick from that list whenever I want and basically write the projects for the people. Most of the projects I can work on right now are non-fiction titles, like self-help books. I just finished one on mental health, which was obviously very fitting! So it's nice that I can work on my own hours and pick projects that I'm interested in.

      I'll be asleep for the wisdom teeth surgery so not too worried about it. I think I'm just concerned about the aftercare haha.

      Anyways, hope you have a great May, Roberta!

    2. "I'll be asleep for the wisdom teeth surgery so not too worried about it."
      Phew. Good luck for the aftercare then! And you have a great May as well. You've earned it 💙.

  2. First off: congrats on the job! :)

    Sorry to hear you've had it tough - you're a rock star though, Em, you're so strong! (I promise!)

    And f**k anyone who tries to make you feel bad about meds - I'm alive because of meds. I don't blame ANYONE who can't get on with meds, or who can't find the right meds balance - it's so personal, that what works for one person won't work for another. But people who meds-shame (and sometimes, I know, it's just random memes floating around the interwebs,) need to f**k the hell off, and stop putting their sh** onto other people.

    There is a history of mental health problems in my mother's family, and I can tell you that, yes, there are serious drawbacks to anti-psychotics sometimes - especially when you're on something that's pretty strong for decades, your health really needs to be monitored - but it's always a balance against the alternative. And NO-ONE should judge you for that.

    ...I may or may not have strong feelings on this ;) <3

    1. Haha, I know you do have strong opinions on this, Cee! Thank you so much. I think people need to realize that med-shaming will only make the sufferer worse, because if you put all of this fear in them then that will only make them panic more about what they're putting into their body. Really it should only be a conversation between me and my doctor. But of course when you get the internet involved, that really isn't possible right?

  3. I am sorry to hear about your panic attacks, but glad to hear you were able to get a new medicine. I agree with you- there is a stigma sometimes, and it's so unnecessary. why shouldn't we get whatever help works, there should be stigma with that!

    I hope you love Falcon and winter Soldier, I thought it was great!

    Thanks for linking my rant. :)

    Have an awesome week!

    1. Thanks Greg. I totally agree. I finished The Falcon and the Winter Soldier in just about a day and I absolutely loved it. It is definitely one of my favourite things to come out of the MCU now.

    2. *Hijacks thread*


      <3 <3 <3

    3. Haha, I've been meaning to tell you, Cee! Omg I loved it so much.

  4. Unfortunately some months I have to skip over a lot of the "Life Stuff" (just because I can't risk the trigger), but reading the sounds like you got some good reading done this month. I'm still so sad about Tower of Nero for you though. Maybe it'll improve upon a re-read in the future?

    I did see you are getting your wisdom teeth out, so I hope you heal up quickly after that. Let us know how you're doing when you can - feel free to reach out on Twitter!

    1. Completely understandable, Shayna! We have to take care of ourselves first, that's why content warnings are so important :)

      Perhaps The Tower of Nero will improve in the future. I just can't get over the fact that it was the final book in a series over ten years and there was no grand ending. Anyways, hopefully I'll get some better reading done while healing after surgery! Thanks Shayna :)