April 2020 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch

May 1, 2020 Best of the Bunch, Monthly Recap 36

My Goings On in April:

  • Once again, there isn’t really anything to say here. I’ve been listing our random quarantine activities in my Sunday Posts, so I don’t think I should mention them all here again, but go check out the pictures of how my home improvement project turned out!
  • Quarantine hasn’t been all that bad for me, really. I’ve realized I’m truly an introvert. There are five of us living in this house, and I’m mostly fine with only having them for company—I’m not so sad about not being able to go other places. I have thought about my privilege lately, though, and how easy it is for me to say that. I have three kids who all have computers (two of them have them from school), so they can easily do their schoolwork. We have easy access to deliveries. My husband can work from home and his company is doing well, so we don’t have to worry about finances. No one I know directly is sick. It’s been easy to just sit back and enjoy our extra time as a family, but I realize not everyone has that luxury.

Features & Discussions:

April 2020 Discussion Challenge Link-Up & Giveaway
My Teenagers Are Reading Again and My Heart Has Never Been So Happy!!
I’ve Been Impersonated on Instagram!! Let’s Discuss
April 2020 Monthly Wrap-Up Round-Up Link-Up & Giveaway!

My 2020 Reading Progress:

I’ve read 52 books so far this year, putting me 19 books ahead of my Goodreads goal. (I made my goal smaller this year, hoping it would help me write more—it’s maybe working?)

April 2020 Reviews

  • More Than We Can Tell by Brigid Kemmerer** | Review
  • The Darkest Star by Jennifer L. Armentrout | Review
  • Efrén Divided by Ernesto Cisneros | Review
  • Awesome Dog 5000 vs. Mayor Bossypants by Justin Dean | Review
  • Pretty in Punxsutawney by Laurie Boyle Crompton | Review
  • Man Up by Kim Oclon | Review
  • If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo** | Review
  • Aru Shah and the Song of Death by Roshani Chokshi | Review
  • Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi | Review

**Dual Review with Danielle Hammelef

April Best of the Bunch:

(Best of the Bunch is hosted over at Cocoon of Books. We link up our favorite reads of the month!)

Both of my choices were really tough this month, and I had close runner-ups. For MG, I ended up going with Efrén Divided, just because it’s such an important book (Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes was close, though!)

For YA, I chose Man Up, but it just barely edged out More Than We Can Tell!


2020 Goals Progress:

Progress: 9/21-30 Discussions (Chatty Kathy)

2 discussions this month puts me on track with 9.

My Teenagers Are Reading Again and My Heart Has Never Been So Happy!!
I’ve Been Impersonated on Instagram!!
Google Searches Are Weird (AKA: You Found Me HOW?)
All Those Deleted Drafts
Book-Related Anxiety. It’s a Thing (and I Have It).
The Wonders of a Writing Accountability Partner
The Cybils Awards Finalists! Which Books Do You Hope Will Win?
My 2020 Goals & Challenges
2019 End of Year Book Survey (& Year in Graphs!)

HOST/SIGN-UP LINK – Feed Your Fiction Addiction & It Starts at Midnight


My Bookish Goals for 2020:

  • My Writing Goals

    • Finish first draft of my Selfish Giant retelling. I met my April goals for this! Yay! I’m making good progress!!
    • Attend one writing conference and at least one online class. I did listen to some craft stuff in April, but I focused more on getting my actual writing (and the editing project I was working on for a client) done.
    • Read writing craft books and resources. Okay, start a book in May.
    • Edit A Memory of Magic. Not on the schedule for May because I’m focusing on Selfish Giant.

    My Reading/Reviewing Goals

    • Review (requested) review books within two weeks of publication. I’ll confess that I’ve been a bit of a mood reader this month, so I have two review books I still need to get to. Not too bad, but I definitely don’t want to let myself get too far behind…
    • Review two backlist review books per month. I posted two reviews this month and read another book that I plan to write a review for soon!
      • Here’s the spreadsheet I created specifically for my backlist ARCs and review copies. (This was adapted from one of the tabs on Val @ Reader Voracious’s 2020 spreadsheet). Hopefully seeing this list here monthly will help keep me on track!


Wrap-Up Round-Up!

Don’t forget to link your April wrap-up posts up to the Monthly Wrap-Up Round-Up. And enter the giveaway!

36 Responses to “April 2020 Wrap-Up & Best of the Bunch”

  1. Christine @ Captivated Reading

    I’m like you SO much! I’m such an introvert! My life actually doesn’t look much different than it did before–the only difference is that the husband is getting home earlier since they’re trying not to have anyone there longer than necessary.
    My kids all homeschooled before so they also all have their own computers.

    I do feel for those who are struggling right now… I know there are so many people that are sick or without work right now and struggling. It really breaks my heart.

    On another note, it looks like you got a good amount of reading done this month! I hope your May is amazing!

    Christine @ Captivated Reading recently posted: Last Girls: Blog Tour-Official Dream Cast & Giveaway
  2. Karen Alderman

    I feel the same. I’m incredibly lucky. My husband is working from home. We can get outside quite a bit and it hasn’t been terribly inconvenient overall.

    I miss a few things like plant shopping and the farmers market but I don’t normally go out much or socialize so that hasn’t been different.

    Karen @ For What It’s Worth

  3. Dedra @ A Book Wanderer

    I find myself in the same boat as you. We’ve always homeschooled so that wasn’t any different, and I’ve only got one student left. My oldest two are in college, but commute. So they just had to transition to online classes. And my husband works from home, too. As an introvert, I’ve found the past weeks not too challenging–which does make me feel terribly lucky and guilty. <3

    Dedra @ A Book Wanderer recently posted: April 2020 Monthly Wrap-Up & Book Haul
  4. Sam@wlabb

    Seriously, my lifestyle is quarantine. I have not stepped outside since last Thursday, and I am ok about it. I don’t blame you for mood reading. With everything that is going on, I know I need to do what I have to do. If reading what you need to read according to where your heads at, do it. The books always seem better when I do that anyhow

  5. Aj @ Read All The Things!

    Quarantine has made me think a lot about my privilege too. Money is always tight here, but we have access to free grocery deliveries, and we’re not in dire need of anything. I’m trying to be calm and stay inside as much as possible so I don’t accidentally infect someone who can’t stay inside. I hope you have a good May!

  6. Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight

    Damn girl, that is like the quarantine equivalent of Disney World 😂 I still feel quite lucky to not have to work, even though going from one (very small) salary to none is… a trip. But still, seeing people on the front lines, I feel VERY privileged. Also wow your kids’ schools gave them computers!? That is AWESOME. Lena is using an old one of my parents’, but I am thinking about caving in and buying one because it is a MESS. Idk what my dad did to it, but I cannot ever fully get rid of the viruses, and it freezes all the time. It actually kind of worked out well because I got a new computer with my tax return, so Sam uses my old one. But like- you are lucky in the sense that your kids can all like, operate a mouse, and know what a website is. Kindergarten on a laptop is… special 😂 I mean- I am SO lucky that Sam is creepy smart, I honestly don’t know how other parents do it. (Well- from what I understand, many don’t- and the school hasn’t made any of it mandatory, I guess? Idk it’s all really messy. Lena said only about half her class raised their hand when they asked who had internet access/a computer, so that’s where that stands.)

    Also, I am VERY not an introvert, so it’s been hard. I mean- in a sense it’s a little better because I don’t feel bad that I don’t have anywhere to go? 😂 But yeah. I have only seen my mom and dad and I am SOOOOO lucky to have them. I’d be in the fetal position sobbing in a corner otherwise, I think.

    Your post here also reminded me that I need to link to the WURU in my monthly posts- I keep forgetting! I am going to add it now so I don’t forget next month (I copy the drafts every month, hence the forgetting!)

    Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight recently posted: May 2020 Of Books Giveaway Hop
    • Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

      Yeah, I realize I’m very lucky for sure! Our school districts give each kid their own Chromebook, so that has made things much easier.

      I used to consider myself an extrovert (though I’ve always been pretty much in the middle of the scale), but over the years I’ve realized that’s not really true. I mean, I don’t like to be completely alone for extended periods, but I’m definitely not big on gatherings, and I’m mostly okay with staying home. 🙂

      Oh, and as far as linking, you can’t be worse than me when it comes to the Discussion Challenge—I almost never remember to add a link to the challenge in my actual posts and half the time I even forget to add them to the linky until way later. How can I forget that?!

  7. Emily

    I’m glad you have found some peace in quarantine. It’s good to focus on the positive stuff. I can relate in some ways, but I also differ. Quarantine has been hard because I thrive off of hanging out with friends and family. But, I always thought I was an introvert! It seems to me that quarantine has taught me that I am more of an extrovert than I thought.

  8. Lisa Mandina (Lisa Loves Literature)

    I knew I was an introvert, so for the most part being home isn’t bothering me as bad as I know it is others. But I am alone, so I do miss at least being able to go and get out of my house by myself. My wish or thing I’m missing most is just being able to go sit at the library to do some writing without dogs pestering me. Or to go sit at even a fast food restaurant by myself and read and eat in peace.

    I did an online Airbnb writing type of little seminar this month! But no writing. 🙁 Sounds like you’re doing good with some of your writing goals. And I know when you get into one book that’s the one you want to keep working on.

  9. Jenna @ Falling Letters

    Ahhh, it’s nice to hear someone else is doing alright during quarantine 🙂 I live alone, which is a bit much sometimes, but I’ve been having a pretty good time with my various hobbies and video chatting with my family (2/3 of whom are also laid off right now). I hope May has good things in store for you as well!

    Jenna @ Falling Letters recently posted: April 2020 Month in Review
    • Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

      Yeah, you almost have to feel a little guilty about it, right? Like, I shouldn’t be feeling fine while the world is falling apart. My oldest is even more extreme—she basically thinks quarantine is her living her best life. 🙂

  10. Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

    I’m glad you’re enjoying family time, and your home improvement projects! Good job on your reading and blogging goals. I’ve been a mood reader lately also. I loved The Darkest Star, and The Burning Shadow. I’m eagerly waiting on the next book. Have a wonderful week Nicole!

  11. shooting

    Oh, I’m definitely lucky in terms of how quarantine is going for me. I do miss going to certain places, and seeing specific people (like my nieces and nephew), but overall, I’m lucky. Not to say it’s always easy though – some days are rougher than others for sure! I’m glad you’re doing well though. 🙂

    -Lauren
    http://www.shootingstarsmag.net

  12. Marie @ Drizzle & Hurricane Books

    Ah I’m an introvert as well, so quarantine is… well, it’s okay I guess I can handle it better than others, even if it has had its minor and major breakdowns. I’m happy you are doing well Nicole and hope that May will be kind to you and your family <3

  13. Danielle Hammelef

    I already knew I was an introvert and actually adjusting to home activities has actually been really easy for me. I run by myself, love to read, and have plenty of chores to do. I can’t wait to read Efren Divided, especially if you loved it and I get to read Man Up as soon as it gets here thanks to you and the author! The worst part of all this quarantine and not being able to gather is all the milestones we are missing.

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