Monthly Wrap-Up – January 2021


Hello everyone,

It is already time for my first wrap-up of the year and my goodness, January seemed to pass by very quickly! A lot of the month was spent at home due to the latest round of lockdown restrictions, and for me that perhaps unsurprisingly led to relatively equal share of highs and lows.

Thankfully I managed to get two nice long walks in before we were placed in lockdown, as ever since then I have only been outside for small amounts of time. This includes having to work from home, which I don’t particularly enjoy but it is manageable, and right now, the much safer option!

During this lockdown I have found it more difficult to use my time as efficiently as I would like, so hopefully I can make progress with that in the weeks to come. However, I still managed to have my fair share of good days.

Reading followed a similar pattern. I was getting through books quite fast at the start of January, then fell into a mini slump before picking up speed again in the last few days. I ended up finishing four books, while there are two more that I have started and am still currently reading.

Here are the books I read in January:


The Dark Room ⭐⭐⭐.5
The Confession ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Two Can Keep A Secret ⭐⭐⭐
The End Of Her ⭐⭐.5

Those ratings would have made for better reading were it not for the final few chapters of The End Of Her, which ruined most of what had gone before it (more to come in my review!), but overall I am happy with the books I read. The Confession was certainly a powerful and addictive read which I shall remember for a long time.

My February TBR looks very exciting, as it includes the blog tour for Deity, the next book in the incredible Six Stories series, as well as The Thursday Murder Club, and The House On The Cerulean Sea. Having heard so many great things about each of those books, my expectations are high!

In terms of writing, I made some good progress in January with the time I had. I wrote some more poetry and another magazine article among other things, but hopefully I can really push myself to start on a new WIP – I have a good idea in mind and it’s all about finding the motivation to develop it into something more.

Two of my biggest successes over the month were completing an online course in web development, and finishing off painting my new flat. I’m really happy with how it looks! The pandemic has delayed my moving in as I still don’t really have any furniture, but fingers crossed it will not be long now! I have a feeling that I shall be spending a lot of February looking up sofas and bookshelves and all sorts of other things!

To finish, here are some of my favourite posts in January from across the book blogging sphere:

  • Darina posted a thoughtful and detailed list of goals for 2021, as well as a look back on 2020.
  • Sammie discussed her thoughts on all the different types of endings, and gave detailed thoughts and examples.
  • Veronika read some of her co-blogger Sabrina’s favourite books and shared her thoughts.
  • Florence asked if book awards really matter and what impact they have on our reading habits.
  • Amy highlighted some of the classic fairytales that deserve to have retellings.
  • Chana discussed the highly relevant topic of misogyny in fiction.
  • Sofii shared a list of anticipated Latinx books due to be released in 2021.
  • Kay marked her three-year blogging anniversary with a recap of 2020.
  • Ash also wrote a brilliant 2020 recap.
  • Sophie posted her list of resolutions for 2021.
  • Alexia looked back on the most impactful books she read in 2020.
  • Emily did the super interesting and fun Last 10 Books Tag. I’ve loved all of her recent posts, so it was hard to choose just one!
  • Celine reviewed the Washington Poe series by M.J. Craven. It made me want to pick up all three books right away!
  • Becky wrote a very detailed review of The House On The Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune – made me even more excited to read it!
  • Ellie @ Read To Ramble reviewed One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus, which we buddy read in November.
  • Ellie @ Elspells wrote a wonderfully eloquent review of The Clearing by Samantha Clark

Happy reading, and have a lovely February 🙂

34 thoughts on “Monthly Wrap-Up – January 2021

  1. Thank you so much for the link back Stephen! 🥰 Looks like you’ve had a great reading month in January and there are lots of exciting books to come in February! I’m especially excited to hear your thoughts on The Confession and The Thursday Murder Club! 📚❤️ X x x

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for the link back Stephen 🥰🥰 I’m glad you had a good reading month in January! And I’m so excited to hear your thoughts on ‘The House on the Cerulean Sea’ – I’ve been dying to read it! Maybe your review will push me to finally get it 😉 I’m also glad to hear that writing went well, are you freelancing too? And I hope you get to move in to your new place soon! 💜 I hope you find the perfect pieces for your bookshelves and reading spaces 📚💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re welcome, Alexia 🥰 I’m so excited to read The House On The Cerulean Sea as I have heard the best things! I shall definitely be telling you what I think. I’m not freelancing but I do write for a magazine. 😊 And thank you so much!! 🥰

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  3. Amazing post, as always!! ❤️ Thank you so much for sharing my Latinx releases post, it means a lot to me 🥺✨ & OMG, here ready to know all your thoughts on The House On The Cerulean Sea, I’ve heard only the best things about that book. 👏🏻
    Happy reading 🥰

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you so much for including my post, it means the world to me! I had so much fun writing it and I’m really glad you enjoyed it too! I’m going to make myself a cup of tea, get myself cosy and read all the other wonderful posts on your list!

    Your TBR for February sounds great and I look forward to hearing your thoughts soon! 🥰✨

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I feel like the most frustrating thing is when a book is doing great right up until the very end! But it looks like you have some super exciting picks for February – I’m looking forward to your reviews on The Thursday Murder Club and the House on the Cerulean Sea!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely, and this is one of the worst endings I have ever come across! But yes, I am really looking forward to all my February reads, I’ve heard great things. Have a lovely month, Julie Anna!

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  6. Yaaay! I’m so excited to see that The House in the Cerulean Sea is no your Feb TBR 😍 I hope you enjoy it, Stephen! I’ve heard a lot about The Confession (and about Burton’s books in general actually) and it does seem really good. It sounds like it was quite the impactful read! Being stuck at home all the time is definitely a struggle, especially when you’re trying to stay focused and on track (at least for me anyway 😂) but I do hope that February brings more good days your way!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can’t wait to read it, thank you so much Dini! The Confession contained great storytelling as was also quite moving in parts. Staying on track can be difficult for sure! Have a lovely February 😊

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  7. So glad to hear you’ve been doing well Stephen!! And I definitely agree, January went by at an inhuman pace 😱 I hope you enjoy all the books on your February TBR — I can’t wait to hear what you think of them! 😊

    Great wrap-up ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks so much for the mention, you’re so kind! I’m glad to hear you had a good writing month, and wishing you luck for developing your new WIP. I’ve also been curious about The House on the Cerulean Sea and would love to see your thoughts on that one when you get to reading it! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re very welcome! Thank you, getting started on a new WIP feels like a difficult leap, but hopefully I’ll get there! I am really excited to read The House on the Cerulean Sea after hearing all the great things about it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I hope you’ll love The House in the Cerulean Sea! I’ve only read it in December, but I’d consider it one of my all time favorite books. 😀 Glad to see that you enjoyed The Confession, I’m planning on reading it soon. Thank you for highlighting my post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Thank you for featuring my post, Stephen! I agree that working from home is tough and balancing work and life when almost always at home is a struggle. I hope you are able to read some more great books in February!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I hope you enjoy all the books on your February TBR, Stephen! 😊 I’ve heard great things about The House on the Cerulean Sea and look forward to seeing your thoughts on it. Happy reading! 💜📚

    Liked by 1 person

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