Monthly Wrap-Up – August 2022


Hello everyone,

It is time to look back on another month, and August was a busy one that contained a mixture of enjoyment and anxiety. It included my birthday and a few quite memorable days here and there, but there were times where I had a lot on my mind, both at work and elsewhere.

Starting on a positive note, my birthday was a really good day, mostly spent with my family. I had a nice time in London the day before too, visiting the museums and also taking a close look at the Royal Albert Hall. The only challenge was the heat wave, which returned with a vengeance!

I received two books for my birthday – that is always my maximum – and both are high up on my TBR.


The Dictionary Of Lost Words has been on my list for what feels like forever. I have heard amazing things about it and in general it sounds like a book I will love. As for Wrong Place Wrong Time, the reviews are gushing in their praise and Gillian McAllister is already one of my favourite authors anyway, so I have very high hopes that I will like this one too.

In terms of actual reading done in August, it was a disappointing month as far as quantity goes as I finished – by my standards – a paltry three books. The reason for this was partly a lack of time and also the fact I have found it really difficult to focus on anything lately. I ended up giving all three books the same rating, too. Here they all are:


The House Of Fortune ⭐⭐⭐.5
The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo ⭐⭐⭐.5
Magpie Lane ⭐⭐⭐.5

So yes, the biggest headline is that I finally read The Seven Husbands Of Evelyn Hugo, having previously said I would probably never pick it up. Times change! It is an excellent book in a lot of ways and Evelyn is quite a character, although it was not perfect and I certainly did not connect with it as much as Daisy Jones And The Six.

My most anticipated book of the summer was The House Of Fortune, which was a very decent sequel to The Miniaturist if just a little unspectacular in places. Meanwhile, Magpie Lane was all set to receive at least a four-star rating until the ending spoilt things a little. But overall, I cannot say that I did not enjoy any of these books.

Looking ahead for the rest of September, the target is simply to get my reading mojo back and finish as many books as I can. I am on the brink of finishing The Cottingley Cuckoo and am also listening to Alias Grace on audiobook. Last weekend I started The Night Circus, a book which I have always been intrigued by. I also want to read Truly Devious, and hopefully I might pick up one of my birthday books too!

My main writing assignment in August was to edit the upcoming issue of the Soccer 360 magazine, and it was fun but exhausting. A lot of the articles were long and a couple arrived late because the writers contracted COVID-19, so that led to a few late nights and some last-minute work, but we got there in the end.

You may notice a new graphic at the top of this post – I finally set some time aside to update my existing ones, which I have used since March 2020 and needed refreshing. The background is a picture of my own bookshelves, and I wanted to create something clear and pretty but not too overwhelming. Any feedback would be welcome!

I also started using Instagram in August – I am @stephenreads1308 if anyone wanted to give me a follow. I will mostly be posting reviews and bookish content, but I also plan to use it to share photographs from my holidays and day trips. I have considered Instagram for some time; it was just finding a way to make the best use of it.

From the outside, it may seem that universities are not busy in the summer because most of the students are away, but the opposite is true. Work has been more hectic than ever and my to-do list never seems to decrease, especially as I take on additional tasks. Time is a very precious thing right now…

Other August highlights included some really nice catch-up with friends over lunch, seeing the film adaptation of Where The Crawdads Sing (which was pretty good), and my mum’s 60th birthday, where she was spoilt with lots of nice food in particular.

But September is now upon us and autumn looms. I hope everyone has a wonderful month filled with lots of great books!

Happy reading 🙂

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8 thoughts on “Monthly Wrap-Up – August 2022

  1. Great wrap-up! Happy belated birthday, Stephen! Glad that you had a wonderful day with family and sightseeing in London. 😃 I can relate to you about August reading plans not going according to plan. It has been tough to focus and I’m feeling lots of restless or off energy! I’m hoping we both find that reading mojo back in September. I like your new post banner—your shelf is so nicely organised and the colours are pretty too. 😍 I hope you have an amazing month ahead!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Dini! It was wonderful in London, even in the middle of a heatwave 😅 So far September has been a slightly better month for reading, I hope it’s been the same for you too. Thank you for the feedback about the banner! ☺️

      Like

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