May To-Read Pile & Mini Break (Health Update)

Boy, this week has not been a fun one. At all. To be vague, something has happened (or, rather, not happened), and while it very much could mean nothing, my brain has been working in overdrive to churn out the worst possible scenarios. And the looming possibility that I unwittingly did something terribly wrongย has been knifing away at my heart and siphoning off energy like nothing else. So I’ve been oscillating between getting too little sleep and too much sleep–and feeling exhausted regardless of which–with panic attacks in between. And it’s gotten to the point where I just don’t have the willpower or focus to write anything substantial for the blog (which is why I ended up skipping Top 5 Wednesday and Diversity Spotlight Thursday).

Anxiety is a fucking bitch, guys.

So I’m going to step away for a week so to try to figure things out. A part of me thinks that taking any kind of break or hiatus is going to make my content obsolete and my audience vanish–which I know is a common fear for most content creators–but, really, I don’t see much choice. I do apologize for the comments that I haven’t gotten to yet and for not being very active on some of your blogs this week.

On a cheerier note, I did get a May TBR list ready before this week, so we can still go through those today! I also have a half-completed Most-Anticipated list in the draft, so I might just end up posting that sometime early next week.


The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang:
I’ll be starting a buddy read of this tomorrow with Alice from Arisutocrat and I’m pretty excited. The story apparently descends into brutal, bloody stuff in the second half, so I’m not sure if it’s a right thing to dive into in my current state, but we’ll see. I’ll kick myself later if I have too.

Armistice (The Amberlough Dossier 2) by Lara Elena Donnelly:
Last year, Donnelly’s debut Amberlough took my heart in its beautiful art deco hands and crushed it to smithereens. The first book was unapologetically, gloriously queer and explored the creeping emergence of fascism–making it very, very topical–and I expect the good things to continue in the sequel.



Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse
Native American urban fantasy is not something you see everyday and I’ve been looking forward to digging my fingers into this debut for a while now.

The Rig by Roger Levy
When I first read the blurb for this book months ago, I knew I had to get my hands on it. I mean, just listen to this:

On a desert planet, two boys meet, sparking a friendship that will change human society forever.
On the windswept world of Bleak, a string of murders lead a writer to a story with unbelievable ramifications.
One man survives the vicious attacks, but is left with a morbid fascination with death; the perfect candidate for the perilous job of working on a rig.

Welcome to the System. Here the concept of a god has been abandoned, and a new faith pervades: AfterLife, a social media platform that allows subscribers a chance at resurrection, based on the votes of other users.

So many Lives, forever interlinked, and one structure at the centre of it all: the rig.


A Lite Too Bright by Samuel Miller
I didn’t know this book even existed until several days ago when I saw it among the deals of the week on Chapters Indigo, but I couldn’t not preorder it. It’s a road-trip story in which a teenage boy embarks on a quest to uncover truths about his grandfather who had been a very famous writer. In other words, it’s right up my alley. I fell in love with the premise and the cover and hopefully the content will be as equally wonderful.

Anger is a Gift by Mark Oshiro
This books has a similar premise to The Hate U Give and from what I’ve heard, it’s just as much of a gutpuncher. Give me all the books, contemporary or otherwise, that tackle matters of societal injustice and brim with righteous anger.


I’ll definitely be checking out other books this month, but these are the definite ones.

I hope the rest of your week is much, much better than mine. See you all on the flip side.


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0 comment

Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum May 3, 2018 - 1:35 pm

I loved The Poppy War, but yes, the second half especially around the 75% mark or so, things get pretty brutal. But it’s an amazing book and worth it if you can bear it or just skim or skip the disturbing bits ๐Ÿ™‚ Hope you feel better.

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 3, 2018 - 1:47 pm

Gotcha. I’ll just do my best to mentally prepare for it. ๐Ÿ™‚ And thank you!

Tammy May 3, 2018 - 1:39 pm

Good luck with your anxiety, I’m sorry you’re going through this. Hope everything resolves itself. On a brighter note, your TBR for May is excellent:-)

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 3, 2018 - 1:50 pm

Thanks, Tammy. <3 And, if nothing else, I'll be swimming in a pile of good books for the next few weeks. ๐Ÿ™‚

Vera May 3, 2018 - 2:04 pm

Oh no, if itโ€™s any consolation I know what anxiety feels like and itโ€™s never fun when it does happen to come over uninvited. โ˜น

I really hope your time off will help you. I found private journaling useful as sometimes writing my heart out really helps me cope a little better. Fingers crossed you feel better soon!

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 4, 2018 - 1:21 am

It’s just so crazy how you can go from a 0 to 100 in a matter of minutes without warning. And I will definitely try the journaling–thank you, Vera! <3

Nadine - todaysechoes May 3, 2018 - 3:25 pm

Take care!
I’m super excited to read The Poppy War, so I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts. I recently read Trail of Lightning and it was awesome! Hope you enjoy it.

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 4, 2018 - 1:05 am

Thank you, Nadine! <3 Also looking forward to hearing your thoughts on The Poppy War!

meltotheany May 3, 2018 - 6:55 pm

Sending you love and light, and a friendly reminder to always put yourself first. Anxiety is no joke, but I’m here if you ever need anyone to talk to or anything like that. I do love your TBR! I just finished The Poppy War and REALLY enjoyed it! I’m wishing you all best this May and always! Happy reading! ๐Ÿ’•xx

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 4, 2018 - 1:34 am

Thank you, Melanie!! <3 I'm even more pumped up for The Poppy War now! And I might just take you up on that talk offer because the issue is kind of book-related and holy crap, my friends do NOT get anxiety or they don't get anxiety of this severity. Is it okay if I message you on Discord?

meltotheany May 4, 2018 - 6:57 pm

Yes! Message away, love! I canโ€™t wait to talk books with you! ๐Ÿ’—

Justine May 3, 2018 - 11:43 pm

You described anxiety so perfectly, and I hope you feel better! I’m reading The Poppy War and Anger is a Gift, too, this month!

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 4, 2018 - 12:44 am

Thanks, Justine! <3 And I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts on those two. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anna @MyBookishDream May 4, 2018 - 11:53 pm

I hope you feel better soon and that everything resolves itself! <3

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 5, 2018 - 1:26 am

Thank you! โค๏ธโค๏ธ

gwalsh1985 May 5, 2018 - 9:32 am

Health, in all its forms, is the most important thing and you *must* always do what you need to do in order to healthy and well. That is both physically and mentally. I don’t know your level of anxiety but as a fellow anxiety and panic attack sufferer I have empathy as it is completely unpleasant and frustrating experience and its just so many layers of utter suck.

Do what you need to do to be well and focus on yourself! Look forward to your return when you are ready!

Kathy @Pages Below the Vaulted Sky May 6, 2018 - 1:15 am

Thank you! <3 "So many layers of utter suck" is the perfect phrase to describe it. I've been talking to people and getting some outdoor exercise (I know a lot of people scoff at the whole "get some sun" part of depression/anxiety advice, but Vitamin D does wonders) so things are slowly getting better!

gwalsh1985 May 7, 2018 - 7:07 pm

I always stick by my little motto ‘do what you need to do to survive’ and by that I mean do what benefits you and sod what everyone else thinks! I know things like exercise and nutrition and sleep etc. don’t and never will cure any depression/ anxiety but eating right and sleeping well and taking care of your body doesn’t *harm* it either. At the risk of sounding of all floaty, the mind and body are pretty much combined! Help one, help the other.

maddalena@spaceandsorcery May 7, 2018 - 7:58 pm

A much-needed break will certainly bring everything in better perspective, and help with that obnoxious anxiety – so don’t worry: we’ll be waiting for your return and welcome you back once you’re ready. Meanwhile, enjoy all those intriguing books you lined up! ๐Ÿ™‚


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