Reading Round-Up: January

Hello Lovelies!

I hope you’re all well. Have we read any exciting books in January? January is a difficult month because there’s the post Christmas slump and the fact that it’s dark and cold all the time. Anyway, I’ve got a small window of opportunity so I thought I’d just write my round-up post while I’m sat with a Diet Coke waiting for my next gym class. But, you know when you’re so exhausted, you sit down and like melt into the chair? I’ve also got some drama with my tights – the elastic has gone! Anyway, that’s my current state. Hopefully you’re in a better position than I am!

Anyway, I can’t wait to round up my books from January! I did have a wobble in the middle of the month where I panicked because I have so many books to read and I couldn’t get into any but thankfully, I managed to get through that! It can be very overwhelming though, especially if others around you a reading loads!

Regardless, I read 12 books which is an increase on January 2021. I’m really, really chuffed with that! There’s been some absolutely gems in this list too so I can’t wait any longer. Let’s check out the shelves!

Picking a top three has been really hard… I’ve reviewed An Inspector Calls, Lockdown Secrets, Codename Villanelle and The Sky Above the Roof. That makes things a bit easier! (Is that cheating though? Hmm…) Anyway, my top three are:

  1. The Assistant – S.K. Tremayne. Oh my gosh this book! It was absolutely terrifying. It impacted my sleep. I reached a point where I could only read this in daylight. It was a strange mix of desperately wanting to read it and being absolutely frightened to death by it. If you’re a thriller fan, absolutely read this book. BUT, I did warn you!
  2. The Love Hypothesis – Ali Hazelwood. This book was utterly adorable. I love it so much. I was a touch worried about the sciencey stuff but to be fair, it didn’t impact it at all. It was cute, cosy and just left me wanting it for myself. Loved it.
  3. Storm in a C Cup – Caroline Flack. Nearly two years ago, Caroline Flack committed suicide. It’s taken me that time to read this book because I found the whole story utterly heartbreaking. This book was funny, charming and devastating. I did enjoy reading it but it made me feel the loss even more. We have to do more to protect people from the media.

What a brilliant reading month. I am exhaustedly buzzing! Do let me know if you’ve read any of these and how you’ve found them. Also, let me know any books I need to add to my TBR pile too!

Until next time my sweets!

Big Love xxxx

2022!

Hello Lovelies!

I firstly want to wish you all a Happy New Year and welcome 2022 in with a bang! I hope it is full of wonderful experiences, good books, peace, health and warm friendships. None of us know what the future holds but I am going to be positive for the year ahead because I’m certain there’s good books waiting to be read and memories waiting to be made.

Anyway, I’m here today to share with you my thoughts and summary on 2021 and to show you all the books I’ve read in 2021 too. Also, I’m really excited to launch my new Reading Challenge for 2022 as well and I hope you take part in this with me!

2021 was a wonderful year in so many ways but utterly devastating in others. Like the rest of the world, we went into 2021 not really knowing what was going to happen. I decided I would just do what I always do – work on my blog, read plenty, get out there and take advantages of any opportunities that came my way and provide stability to the children in my classroom. I’m absolutely certain I’ll be doing exactly the same now we are in 2022 too!

I remember this time last year in my post I was overjoyed to have read so may books in 2020 – a huge 148. Well, in 2021 I managed to read 161 books. I honestly can’t believe it. I know that sounds so silly because I did my monthly round-ups but it’s still something I’m so proud of and something I never expected to be able to do. Also, how lucky am I to have had the time and the ability to read so may amazing books. It also tells me (not that I need reminding) that reading is definitely a thing of respite and joy for me. I’m still the girl that will read before bed, in the car on long journeys and at any given moment really. My head is usually in a book and I doubt that will ever change!

2021 in books!

  1. Corcoran, Caroline – The Baby Group
  2. Bell, Anna – We Just Clicked
  3. Fennell, David – The Art of Death
  4. Ridpath, Michael – The Diplomat’s Wife
  5. Ryan, Iain – The Spiral
  6. Bond, Caroline – One Split Second
  7. Rankin, Ian – Mortal Causes
  8. Rauf, Onjali Q – The Night Bus Hero
  9. Collen, Lindsey – Mutiny
  10. Watson, Christie – The Courage to Care
  11. Wood, Giles & Killen, Mary – The Diary of Two Nobodies
  12. May, Peter – Lockdown
  13. Turner, A.K. – Body Language
  14. Bailey, James – The Flip Side
  15. Napolitano, Ann – Dear Edward
  16. Rowell, Rainbow – The Prince and the Troll
  17. Potter, Alexandra – Confessions of a Forty-Something F##k Up
  18. Lee, Krys – How I Became A North Korean
  19. Logan, T.M. – The Holiday
  20. Carr, John Dickson – The Corpse in the Waxworks
  21. Walliams, David – Code Name Bananas
  22. Clarke, Rachel – Breathtaking
  23. Grisham, John – The Rooster Bar
  24. Priestley, J.B – An Inspector Calls
  25. Rowell, Rainbow – Eleanor and Park
  26. All on the Board – All on the Board
  27. Alam, Rumaan – Leave the World Behind
  28. Howells, Debbie – The Death of Her
  29. Cavanagh, Steve – Fifty Fifty
  30. Mackesy, Charlie – The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
  31. Michaelides, Alex – The Silent Patient
  32. Hardiman, Rebecca – Good Eggs
  33. Dowling, Tim – How to be a Husband
  34. Charles, Janet Skeslien – The Paris Library
  35. Lefteri, Christy – The Beekeeper of Aleppo
  36. Logan, T.M. – Trust Me
  37. Barnes, Simon – Rewild Yourself
  38. Rosen, Michael – Many Different Kinds of Love
  39. Dowling, Tim – Dad You Suck
  40. Vesper, Inga – The Long, Long Afternoon
  41. Sakhlecha, Trisha – Your Truth or Mine?
  42. Hogan, Ruth – Madame Burova
  43. Hawker, Luke Adam – Together
  44. Morray, Beth – Saving Missy
  45. Logan, T.M. – The Catch
  46. Perry, Annika – Oscar’s Quest
  47. Patterson, James – Murder Games
  48. Swanson, Peter – Her Every Fear
  49. Coben, Harlan – Long Lost
  50. Coles, Richard – The Madness of Grief
  51. McConaughey, Matthew – Greenlights
  52. Moore, Captain Tom – Captain Tom’s Life Lessons
  53. Logan, T.M. – 29 Seconds
  54. Logan, T.M. – Lies
  55. Benedictus, Leo – Consent
  56. Bauer, Belinda – Exit
  57. Toon, Francine – Pine
  58. Cohen, Julie – Together
  59. Redhill, Michael – Bellevue Square
  60. Sher, Abby – All The Ways The World Can End
  61. Kinsella, Sophie – Shopaholic and Sister
  62. Henry, Emily – Beach Read
  63. Kinsella, Sophie – Shopaholic & Baby
  64. O’Leary, Beth – The Road Trip
  65. Schutz, Lars – The Alphabet Murders
  66. Markinson, T.B. – The Setup
  67. Cloke, Nicci – Close Your Eyes
  68. Taggart, Caroline – The Book Lover’s Bucket List
  69. Latham, Martin – The Book Seller’s Tale
  70. Wurger, Takis – Stella
  71. Woods, Carolyn – Sleeping with a Psychopath
  72. Nealon, Louise – Snowflake
  73. Grisham, John – The Associate
  74. Tolkien, J.R.R – The Hobbit
  75. Candlish, Louise – The Skylight
  76. James, Peter – Wish You Were Dead
  77. Liardet, Frances – We Must Be Brave
  78. Hwang, Sun-Mi – Miracle on Cherry Hill
  79. Brandi, Mark – The Rip
  80. Williams, Candice-Carty – Notting Hill Carnival 
  81. Lansdale, Joe R – Cold in July
  82. Earle, Phil – When The Sky Falls
  83. Lefteri, Christy – Songbirds
  84. Kaplinsky, Natasha – Letter from Lockdown
  85. Wharfe, Ken – Guarding Diana
  86. Patterson, James – Mistress
  87. Paris, B.A. – The Therapist
  88. Adimi, Kaouther – A Bookshop in Algiers
  89. Michaelides, Alex – The Maidens
  90. Skördeman, Gustaf – Geiger
  91. Wix, Katy – Delicacy
  92. Owens, Delia – Where the Crawdads Sing
  93. Woolridge, Addie – The Checklist
  94. Craven, M.W. – The Puppet Show
  95. Philby, Charlotte – A Double Life
  96. Carpenter, Elisabeth – The Woman Downstairs
  97. Maclean, Julianne – These Tangled Vines
  98. Bell, Alex – It Started With a Tweet
  99. French, Dawn – Because of You
  100. Berry, Lauren – Living the Dream
  101. Ayrton, Lucy – One More Chance
  102. Rous, Emma – The Au Pair
  103. Baker, Tim – Fever City
  104. Galbraith, Robert – Troubled Blood
  105. Hislop, Victoria – The Island
  106. Hislop, Victoria – One August Night
  107. Patterson, James – The Quickie
  108. Rentzenbrink, Cathy – Dear Reader
  109. Patterson, James – Kill Me If You Can
  110. Crawford, Susan – The Pocket Wife
  111. See, Lee – The Island of Sea Women
  112. Coble, Kaela – Friends and Liars
  113. Dinsdale, Robert – Gingerbread
  114. Christie, Agatha – Hercule Poirot and the Greenshore Folly
  115. Patterson, James – Texas Ranger
  116. Hawkins, Paula – A Slow Fire Burning
  117. Carpenter, Elisabeth – Only a Mother
  118. Taylor, Kathrine Kressmann – Address Unknown
  119. Sharpe, Tess – The Girls I’ve Been
  120. Chaney, Lawrence – Drag Queen of Scots
  121. Pullman, Philip – Grimms Tales for Young and Old     
  122. Natsukawa, Sosuke – The Cat Who Saved Books
  123. Ryan, Katherine – The Audacity
  124. Shakespeare, William – Macbeth
  125. Seuss, Dr – Green Eggs and Ham
  126. Williams, Margery – The Velveteen Rabbit
  127. Frazier, Jean Kyong – Pizza Girl
  128. Peston, Robert – The Whistleblower
  129. Patterson, James – Private Princess
  130. Hope, Lucy – Fledgling
  131. Rowling, J.K. – The Ickabog
  132. Kinsella, Sophie – The Party Crasher
  133. Patterson, James – Texas Outlaw
  134. Walters, Minette – The Swift and the Harrier
  135. Miller, Ben – The Day I Fell Into a Fairytale
  136. Norbury, James – Big Panda and Tiny Dragon
  137. Carr, Jimmy – Before & Laughter
  138. Benjamin, Ali – The Thing About Jellyfish
  139. Grisham, John – Sooley
  140. Page, Alexandra – Wishyouwas
  141. Dickens, Charles – A Christmas Carol
  142. Beaumont, Lucy – Drinking Custard: Diary of a Confused Mum
  143. Stevenson, Robert Louis – The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
  144. Barnett, Laura – Gifts
  145. Hoang, Helen – The Heart Principle
  146. French, Nicci – Killing Me Softly
  147. Prior, Hazel – Call of the Penguins
  148. Daley, Tom – Coming up for Air
  149. Thayne, RaeAnne – Christmas at the Holiday House
  150. French, Nicci – What to do When Someone Dies
  151. Fletcher, Carrie Hope – Into the Spotlight
  152. Ahlberg, Janet & Allan – The Jolly Christmas Postman
  153. Patterson, James – Don’t Blink
  154. Wilson, A.N. – The King and the Christmas Tree
  155. Kinsella, Sophie – Love Your Life
  156. Perry, Sarah – The Essex Serpent
  157. Fargher, Anna – Umbrella Mouse to the Rescue
  158. Cooper, Daisy May – Don’t Laugh, It’ll Only Encourage Her
  159. Rayner, Jay – Chewing the Fat
  160. Lean, Sarah – The Good Bear
  161. Donaldson, Julia & Sandey, Victoria – The Christmas Pine     

There are so many great books here by brilliant writers. Yet, I am well aware when people post how many books they’ve read, it can be quite overwhelming. Confession time: there are so many books that I’ve given up on. I’m absolutely ruthless as well because I can give up after reading the first page. I just know if it’s a book for me or not. That isn’t to say that it’s a bad book. I’m in no position to judge and never would – it’s more about how I react to it. For example, I struggle when there’s lots of characters because I get confused. I’m less good with books that constantly change time frames. These books are still amazing to other people, but just aren’t the right ones for me. Don’t ever feel like you didn’t do very well because you read less. Reading a book is an absolute joy and honour. Most of all, reading is for you. Don’t ever forget that or doubt yourself when it comes to reading.


And now the bit I’m most excited about… My new reading challenge!

I’ve reflected quite a lot on my Reading Challenge of 2021. I loved doing it and I am so pleased I made it but I want 2022 to be even better. Last year, each month had a different theme. This year I’ve gone for a more fluid approach whereby I’ve made a bingo card and I will tick off one of the twelve focuses each month across the year.

Anyway, I’m proud to introduce to you all Book Bingo: Reading Challenge 2022!

There are some obvious things here where it fits certain months but I think this flexibility means I’ll be branch out into new areas that I haven’t gone into before. I can explore self-published books, new genres and tick off those books that I’ve been meaning to read for years but never quite got round to because a beautiful cover somewhere else caught my eye…

I’d love it if you took part in this with me and shared with me what you pick. After all, my to be read pile grows because of this community – let’s face it! Most of all, I really hope you like it! Happy New Year again and here’s to a booktastic 2022! Until next time…

Big love all xxx

Blog Birthday!

Morning Loves!

Well, I’ve finally made it to half term. I can honestly say that in my career I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a term quite like that one. There have been some really wonderful highlights though. We threw a party for our Year 11 students which was wonderful and we managed to at least give the year group a good send off. It’s also been the month for being able to socialise in groups of up to six. Six is clearly the magic number because I want to share with you today the fact that my little blog is now six years old!

On the 25th May 2015, I decided to take up blogging because I just wanted a little space to call my own. I wanted to be able to write about the books and places I love. I can’t believe those six years have flown by and where we are now. So much has changed and yet I’d like to thing my blog has grown from strength to strength. Part of that is because of you wonderful fellow bloggers.

I’d like to share with you all on this post some of my top sixes. I hope you enjoy!!

Top Six Favourite Books EVER:

1. Harry Potter Series – J.K. Rowling. This isn’t going to be a surprise to anyone that knows me or my blog. I grew up with these books. They were a huge part of my childhood. I was also a little bit devastated when I didn’t receive my letter…

2. The Toymakers – Robert Dinsdale. I found this book to be utterly incredible for so many reasons. It’s still the one book I buy for all my friends for birthdays. Everyone has to read it. It’s just one of those gems that stay with you.

3. Cartes Postales from Greece – Victoria Hislop. I have two copies of this book – paperback and hardback – where the postcards are all in colour. This book is really incredible. Set in my favourite country of Cyprus, this book was another that I found by pure chance. It’s also the book I’ve re-read most (outside of the texts I teach annually at school).

4. Hungry – Grace Dent. This book is a new addition to my favourites list because it’s a fairly new book. However, I thoroughly enjoyed this book because it made me reflect on my own foodie childhood. It’s something I’ve really never considered before – the relationship between food and our memories. I can remember ever Saturday morning whilst my mum worked, sending the day with my dad eating beans on toast. It’s the little things like that that this book reminded me of.

5. The Ravenmaster: My Life with the Ravens at the Tower of London – Christopher Skaife. London is a brilliant city full of life and energy. This book gave me a glimpse into what life is like in the Tower of London. It’s steeped in history and I found that I really wanted to see the ravens once I’d read it. You may have seen recently in the news about the death of Merlina but the birth and the new name being announced of the latest addition. This is really a gem of a book.

6. To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee. This book was my GCSE text when I was at school. I remember reading it and feeling lost with the world that I didn’t really know. This book really has stood the test of time and it’s one that I would urge everyone to read. I also think having a child narrator (Scout) is really clever. Seeing the world in the eyes of a child is quite a revealing thing.


Top Six Books I Need To Read:

1. The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien
2. 1984 – George Orwell
3. The Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
4. Little Woman – Louisa May Alcott
5. Fahrenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury
6. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens

These are all classics and I am absolutely well aware that there are hundreds if not thousands more that I want to read. Looking at my own TBR pile at the moment is overwhelming in itself but the holidays are for this moment – sleeping and reading. I can’t wait!!

What are your favourites? Have you got any books you really should have read by now? Regardless, I hope my lists have inspired your next read. The majority of my TBR list comes from my fellow bloggers in this community. I’m going to attempt to make a dent in the HUGE pile of books I’ve got to read over my half term break. Of course, I’ll be here for my review of this months book choice for my reading challenge and I’ll be posting my round-up of the month too. If we’re lucky, I’ll also be sharing with you more book reviews on books I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading.

Thank you for all of the support over the last six years.

Big Love to you all! Xx

Reading Round-Up: March

Morning Book Lovers!

I hope you’re all well and settling into the Spring weather nicely. I say that… I went from wearing a strappy top because of the warmth created by the glorious sunshine one day to snow and a big jumper the next. British weather really is a surprise sometimes! Now I am back by the fire, today’s post is a round up of the books I’ve read in the month of March – a little late, I know. Please forgive me! I’ve spent my Easter break catching up and having the best time really. It’s wonderful to be back with my support bubble.

I managed to read a total of 14 books which is just one less than last month. Considering we have had children back in school and life has become a different kind of hectic, I’m really thrilled with this number. I must confess, the last six books on the list were ones I read on holiday though… Regardless, I’ve experienced some new writers this month and ones where I have already added more of their titles to my book order… Please reassure me that it isn’t just my TBR list that doesn’t seem to go down… Anyway, let’s look at the shelves for March!

Picking a top three for this month is going to be pretty difficult – there’s just so many good ones. This month has been the month for some absolutely brilliant books for lots of different reasons. Sometimes a book comes along at just the right moment. It seems that I fell on my feet so much with regard to this. It’s a real blessing when it happens. I’ve decided for my top three this month, I’ll pick books I’ve not reviewed yet. However, if you’re wanting to see the reviews for Many Different Kinds of Love, Madame Burova and Oskar’s Quest please click herehere and here

  1. Trust Me by T.M. Logan. Logan has become one of my favourite writers. I literally cannot get enough of him. I received a review copy of Trust Me and I have been recommending it to everyone and anyone that will listen to me. It was thrilling, gripping, frightening, unnerving and utterly sublime. I’m now working my way through the rest of his work too. I really need to review more of his work on my blog so you can see how brilliant he is. 
  2. The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri. Despite this book being about the harsh realities of life in Aleppo, fleeing conflict and the horrors that come with it, I found this book to be more about hope than anything else. I literally couldn’t put it down and read it in one sitting. To see the resilience and complete faith in the worst circumstances is really inspirational and humbling.
  3. Your Truth or Mine? by Trisha Sakhlecha is my third choice for this month. A writer I have never heard of before but certainly won’t forget now. This book had me utterly gripped from start to finish. I also didn’t quite work out the twists and turns either. I was so thrilled to have received this in one of my many book subscription boxes and it is a writer that I will keep my eyes out for in the future. 

Another successful month I feel, despite the challenges faced in education right now. I thank you all for your patience and interaction with me on my blog. I do try really hard to keep up with you wonderful people. I blame you all for my ever increasing TBR list as well! 

Hopefully I’ll be able to squeeze another review out before I head back to work next week. I’m embracing the inclement weather and reading opportunities with a hearty gusto, I must say! Next month sees another focus for my reading challenge and hopefully many more wonderful books that I can’t wait to read. Take care everyone!

Big Love xxx

Reading Round-Up: February

Hello Loves!

First of all, let me wish you a happy March. March is the month that gifts us with Spring 🌻. It’s a month that is bringing us all hope for the future too. We definitely have light at the end of the tunnel after a difficult winter. Nevertheless, the evenings are lighter and there is a lot to celebrate. ☀️

I really enjoyed writing my round-up last month so I thought it would be something I do every month now. February was a shorter month (my excuse anyway?) but I did manage to read 15 books which I’m quite pleased with. It’s a little less than last month but that’s really ok. It is the joy of reading that matters more than the numerical amount. There’s been some personal challenges for me this month so once again the writing left me but the reading remained. Regardless, I’ve read some brilliant books in February and I can’t wait to share them with you. Let’s check out the shelves!

As I say, there’s some fantastic books here and some reviews I really need to post. Picking a top three has been difficult. However, my top three books of February are:

  1. Breathtaking by Rachel Clarke. I don’t have the eloquence or the words really to explain how sublime this book is. Like I said in my previous post, we have all been affected by the pandemic, myself included. This book shows us inside the beating heart of the NHS at the start of the pandemic. What the NHS staff have seen and experienced this time is incomprehensible. My heart broke when I was reading about how they make sure nobody dies alone.💜
  2. All On The Board by Ian Redpath and Jeremy Chopra. Based at North Greenwich station two underground workers, Ian and Jeremy, try and make the day a little better by leaving messages and poems on the board for people passing through the station. This collection shows some of their work. It’s a really uplifting book and you can see more on their Facebook page here.
  3. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides. This book kept me gripped from start to finish. It’s been doing the rounds recently so it is clearly a popular choice and I can totally see why. It was also a book where I didn’t work out the ending either which can happen with thrillers. A great, pacy book. (Mind you, Fifty Fifty by Steve Cavanagh was just as pacy too.)

Also, there was a new focus for the reading challenge this month and I read my first John Grisham book. Some of you lovely people also recommended other Grisham books that I have added to my ‘never ending and will probably out live me’ reading list. Thank you so much. If you missed it, you can catch up with it here.

I wish you a happy, bright and healthy March. I’m hoping to share with you more books I’ve loved as well and to keep catching up with you all. Happy Spring everyone! 🌸 🌺 🌻

Big love all xxx

Reading Round-Up: January

Good Morning Lovelies!

After a good nights sleep and with the rain currently sloshing down my windows, I thought now was the perfect time to share with you what I’ve been reading in January. First of all, how beautiful is my image for this post? I LOVE it. Anyway, this is new to my blog but I thought it would make a good addition because I read a few books but I don’t always review them all. This way, I can share with you monthly the books that have captivated my attention and share with you stories that are too good to miss. I’ve found so many amazing books through the blogging community so I hope this gives you the opportunity to add to your own to be read pile. 📚

In January, I read a total of 18 books which is a bit of a record for me. There were some absolute page turners in that eighteen too! Let’s check out the shelves!

My Top Three books for this month would have to be:

  1. The Art of Death by David Fennell. This book is the epitome of page turner. I was completely hooked and just had to find out what happened. It will grab you instantly.
  2. The Diary of Two Nobodies by Giles Wood and Mary Killen. Known for being on Gogglebox, these two make me laugh every time I see them. The book was exactly the same. I could hear their voices in my head, that’s for sure.
  3. The Flip Side by James Bailey. You can check out my review for this one here. Sometimes we all just need a bit of fluff and this provided me with a light read that I thoroughly enjoyed.

I was lucky this month because there weren’t any books that I didn’t enjoy. This is because I tend to stop reading them if I’m not liking them. After all, there’s not enough time to read everything anyway, why waste it on something you’re not enjoying?

This month also saw the start of the reading challenge for 2021. January’s book Mutiny by Lindsey Collen definitely took me to a beautiful geographical setting, but instead gave me the hangover version of that country. Check out the view here.

February brings us the month of love ❤️ and we all know my first love is books! I’m excited to see what this month brings and to see what page turners I can possibly read in that time.

Keep safe, dry and well.

Big love all xxx

4th Blogiversary 🥳

Hello Lovelies!!

Just a quick post from me today to reflect upon my little blog because yesterday, 25th May, it turned four years old! I can’t believe it!

Every year I feel like I say the same thing which must be so boring for you all. I tend to just gush with gratitude and marvel in how amazing this community is. I’m incredibly grateful for the love and kindness I get on here.

However, this year I’d like to share with you a few things I’ve learnt along the way.

  1. It’s absolutely ok to not post something every day / regularly. I admire people who do this! They’re extremely talented. Personally, sometimes I just don’t want to or I feel like I don’t have anything worthwhile to say or (most likely) I’ve done a 12 hour day at work and I’m about to drag myself home to mark some exercise books. Regardless, I know the community will welcome my next post with open arms when I return. They do it for everyone.
  2. We can’t all like the same thing. I mainly blog about books, places I’ve visited or a few photos here and there. Whilst this is perfect for me, it may be that I blog about a book / place which you absolutely dislike. That is fine! How boring would the world be if we all liked the same thing?! 🤗
  3. Offer support back. I mentioned in the first one that the community always welcome you back with open arms, but give something back. Leave them a like, tell them you’re pleased to see them. We’re all behind a screen here so none of us really know how the other is or what insecurities they may be feeling. Reach out to someone new. Make them welcome. I wouldn’t have got this far without the support of some of my fellow bloggers, especially those from the start.
  4. Have realistic goals. Whether this be for scheduled posts or word counts or number of books, keep it realistic to you. Don’t compare what you’re doing to everyone else. It’s not a competition on here – it’s a network, a community. I’ve never set a target of how many posts or anything like that. For me, my goals are to keep in touch with the bloggers I follow now and post whenever I feel like it. I do have one goal this year and that is to read 100 books. So far, I’m on 42! 😎
  5. Be kind, always. I know I have flaws. I miss posts that people have spent hours crafting. I forget to check notifications after a long, challenging day at work. None of that matters if you show kindness with it. I apologise (a lot)! I do catch up or try to at least. Inevitably, there will be something people miss. That’s absolutely ok! I’m really really fortunate. In four years I’ve never received any hateful or hurtful comments. This is the place where you can write what you want! Your blog is for you, after all.

That’s it really! But they’re huge lessons to learn and I really value learning them. I want to be a positive support on here, to everyone.

So to start this lovely Sunday, I’m off to celebrate the life of the amazing Judith Kerr now. How many generations have been shaped by her writing?! Such a loss, but what a life! ❤️

Honestly, thank you to each and everyone one of you who have stopped by, commented, liked, and stuck with me over four years. I’ve nothing but love and good feelings for you all! I can’t wait to see what the next four years bring!

Big love all. Xx

Happy 3rd Birthday!

Hey Everyone!

Hope you’re all doing really well and enjoying the best that May has to offer. I’ve reached half term! What a massive relief.

Anyway, today I received a really exciting notification.

I can’t believe my little blog is three years old! I’m quite shocked at how my little space on the web has evolved over the last three years. It’s something I’m incredibly proud of and I’m proud of being a part of this amazing community.

There’s so many bloggers I’d like to thank but I hope you know how important you are to me. We’re like a family on here and the support is overwhelming. Some of you have been with me since my first day and I’ll never forget that. To my newer followers, I can’t wait to get to know you better and join in with your journey too.

To mark the three years, I thought I would share three facts about me and blogging with you all.

  1. I’ve only ever reviewed about books I’ve bought myself. I take great enjoyment from visiting bookshops, feeling the books in my hand and buying them. There’s nothing better!
  2. I never follow a blogging schedule. I blog when I can and when I feel like it. There’s been times when life gets in the way and I just don’t seem to have the ability to find the words I need, so I’ve left it. That’s completely normal.
  3. I will always aspire to do better: to see more, to read more, to do something outside of my ordinary world. That’s why I started to blog about different places I’ve visited. I really enjoyed seeing beautiful photos from all around the world from many blogs on here. There isn’t enough time to see everything so I really appreciate those posts. I hope my posts about little visits give you an opportunity to see somewhere new. Just think about the beauty we can share together.

Lastly, my heartfelt thanks. Thank you for accepting me and my little space on the internet with open arms. You’re all wonderful.

Big love xxx

1000 Followers!

Hey Lovelies!!

I hope you’re all well and having a productive week. I was working away today when I noticed the following notification:

I’m genuinely gobsmacked! I can’t quite believe it nor can I really understand it. However, I am truly grateful. I’ve met some amazing bloggers here. It’s a community I feel privileged to be a small part of.

Some of you fabulous people have been with me since day one when I really had no idea what I was doing. I just posted about random books and places I’d visited, almost like an open memory book. The acceptance and the support is really humbling.

To my first followers and those who are always so active, thank you for being patient when I disappear, for recognising my returns and letting me know that it’s ok when life gets in the way. To my newbie followers, thanks for joining and spending time here. I hope we become wonderful blogging pals. To those I’m yet to meet, I look forward to making your acquaintance.

Without sounding like a broken record, thank you. To celebrate I bought myself this amazing unicorn mug. (Ignore the end-of-work hair and tired eyes!)

Big love xxx

900 Followers! 


Hey guys! 

Happy Saturday. Today I realised some really exciting news… I’ve reached 900 followers. I genuinely can’t believe it. When I started my little blog I don’t really think I had any idea what I was doing really. I read a few books, visited a few places and thought I’d just write about it, almost like an online diary. Little did I know what I would learn and who I would stumble across. 

Today I had a day away, I popped to Newcastle to see the amazing Souter Lighthouse. Despite the spirals and the stairs, it was amazing. The views were lovely. I got lucky and saw a rainbow. 


I’ve never been in a lighthouse before but it really is awesome! I highly recommend it actually. On a sunny day you can see for miles. I enjoyed seeing the tide come in. There’s something about hearing the sea against the rocks; the continuous ebb and flow. I even took a smooth pebble home to remember my little trip. 


So, 900 followers and a trip to a lighthouse. Not bad for a quiet September Saturday. 

Big love to you all. Thanks for being a part of my journey. 


Xx