May was woe-is-me month. And here I was hoping for a more serene May. Fortunately, my family is awesome, my cat is fat and there are great books heading my way.


Work was taking its toll and black mood reared its ugly head. I went on silent mode for two week, excerpt during dreaded zoom meetings where I say just enough nonsense so they don’t notice. I super appreciated that none of my folks forced me to talk. They gave me space to sort things out in my head. After weeks of wallowing, I finally got all the negativity out of my system.

I might not like the work but our company does take care of their people. They are rolling out the vaccines roughly around the third quarter. I’m so looking forward to that. I’m waiting for that instead of getting my jab from our local government facility because our office is giving us Moderna. A doctor friend told me any vaccine would do but I don’t want the infamous one with only 50% efficacy, which is what our government is providing.

On the movie front, Cruella was the talk of the town. I’m not big on 101 Dalmatians but I absolutely loved that her origin story is about fashion designers trying to one up each other. I adored the costumes! My favorite was the military uniform with the ruffled skirt. Cruella’s style reminds me of Daphne Guinness.

'Cruella' 2021: The Plot, Trailer, Release Date ...

There was a time when I wanted to be a fashion designer. I even took lessons but I didn’t finish. I got frustrated because I don’t know how to sew and draw very well. I also got tired of my teacher always describing my work as avant garde. I know I tried to make my designs different but I don’t think they were avant garde. I just wanted to make clothes that don’t look like the ones in department stores because what is the point of designing something you can already buy off the rack?

Blog-wise, there are a couple small additions here and there. You can now play the month’s songs directly from the right sidebar. I have also added UK buy links for Bookshop and Amazon whenever available.

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The month opens with two songs from genre-bending duo Sad Night Dynamite. Singer-songwriter, Jake Bugg, breaks out two very danceable singles. I prefer this new sound to his old folksy stuff. New discoveries were indie-pop, Weathers, indie darling, Wallows as well as Canadian post-punk, Heathers. This month had more solo artists from mega-producer and former Vampire Weekend, Rostam, indie staple Hozier, singer-songwriters Jaymes Young and Josef Salvat. Rounding up the list is alternative band, AWOLNATION, with another song for my favorite steampunk series.


  • The Venetian And The Rum RunnerL.A. Witt (4 stars) historical, prohibition era, mafia, crime, enemies to lovers
  • The GangsterC.S Poe (5 stars) steampunk, urban fantasy, mystery, magic, law enforcement, federal agent, outlaw, established couple,
  • LeoSilvia Violet (3 stars) contemporary romance, crime, action, vigilante, size difference, insta love, bdsm, age gap, ex-military
  • XavierSilvia Violet (2.5 stars) contemporary romance, crime, action, vigilante, size difference, bisexual awakening, insta love, age gap, ex-military
  • Black MoonElle Keaton (4 stars) mystery, police procedural, crime, sheriff, private detective, established couple, small town

May was an eclectic mix of historical, steampunk, contemporary romance and police procedural.

The Gangster is a steampunk dream with its rich imagery that brought to life a living, breathing, magically-run 1880s New York. Add to that the high-octane fight scenes, two very compelling MCs and a tender, heart-melting romance, this is hands down the best book of the month, if not the year.

Black Moon is the best book in the Veiled Intentions series. It tied up many loose ends, ending with Niall and Mat tying the knot. I loved catching up with the grumpy Viking and his sheriff. I’m glad they got to their HEA but I’m not ready to say goodbye to Piedras Island just yet.

Enemies-to-lovers historical The Venetian And The Rum Runner brought together one crafty Irish gang leader and an Italian mob boss. I enjoyed the rum-running schemes and that delicious slow-burn romance. The only thing that kept me from giving a perfect score was the ending.

I don’t know why but I just felt the need to see things through to the end with Vigilance despite many disappointments. Book 3, Leo, was tolerable. It put closure on the huge case the boys were working on. Final and much-awaited book, Xavier, was sadly a rehash and brought nothing new to the table.


Great month for manga. I enjoyed all 4 stories. Best ones were Ikigami to Donor and Smile. Prettiest one is Pause.


Short Films


That wraps up May. Stay safe!

Thanks for reading!

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