What happened in January?

After the madness of the festive period, January was a somewhat quieter month. The good kind of quiet.

I got back into a routine with work and even managed to score myself a few new clients. All in all, a pretty great start to 2019 work-wise.

We also managed to get a lot of wedding planning done – we have our wedding venue booked, the party we’re having the following week booked and many of the small details organised. Next on the list is our ‘save the date’ invitations, which I’ve designed myself and should be arriving this week ready to send to our guests.

There was one big bit of bad news in January, though. My beloved dog Ben was diagnosed as having a tumour in his liver and possibly another in his brain.

My poor baby had a seizure and we thought the worst, but he’s on steroids now and is back pretty much to his normal self. He’s playing with his toys, going for walks and has us all at his beck and call.

After his seizure, we spent a few nights sleeping on the living room floor with him as he recovered, which he did much quicker than anyone predicted. I’m typing this post from my couch, as he no longer wants to hang out with me in my office, while he lies beside me sleeping.

Obviously, we don’t know how long he has left with us but as long as he’s happy and not in any pain we’re going to cherish every single moment with him.

Books I read in January…

2019 is the year I’ve vowed to read 70 books after reading a grand total of 64 last year. I got off to a good start reading 7 books in January, some of which I really enjoyed.

My first book of the year was one recommended to me – Skinner’s Rules by Quintin Jardine. I’d been told Detective Skinner was like a better version of Ian Rankin’s Rebus. Although I enjoyed the book, Skinner is nothing like Rebus and, in my opinion, isn’t as good. It’s the raw grittiness of Rebus that I enjoy so much and there isn’t as much of that in Jardine’s novel. If you’ve read Rankin’s books before, don’t shy away from reading Jardine, but try to do it without comparison to enjoy it best.

Next up was Into The Darkness by Sibel Hodge. I think this was my third Sibel Hodge read and another one that I enjoyed. Each of the novels I’ve read from Hodge have been easy to read thrillers that kept me turning the pages. They are rather gory though and there’s lots of detail about some rather gruesome things so I wouldn’t recommend reading if you have a weak stomach!

I moved onto With or Without You by Shari Low, which I really enjoyed. It’s a different type of book than I normally read and was a kind of romantic lifestyle novel. It’s set in Glasgow – my home city – so I found it really relatable and recognised most of the places in the book. It’s kind of like Sliding Doors in that it follows a couple in two different scenarios – one where they decide to divorce and go their separate ways and the other where they stay together and make their marriage work. A really interesting look at the paths our lives take and how our decisions affect the lives of those around us.

My fourth read of the month was The Things You Find in Rockpools by Gregg Dunnett and I really enjoyed this book. It follows 11-year-old Billy who decides to play detective when a tourist visiting his town goes missing. First, he accuses a local man, then he begins to suspect his own father. Could his dad really have killed a teenage girl? Full of suspense, intrigue, excitement and, at times, utterly heartwarming.

One of the things I want to do more of this year is read some of the books on my Amazon wishlist. I have dozens and dozens of books on the list and The Fifth Letter by Nicola Moriarty had been on my list since November 2017. I don’t remember where I was recommended this book from, but it was a good read. Four friends go on holiday and write an anonymous letter each that reveals a secret to the others, but then a fifth letter is discovered and the girls try to work out who the author of the letter is.

Up next was Hold Back The Stars by Katie Khan. This was another on my Amazon list and I downloaded it onto my Kindle without even reading the synopsis. That meant I didn’t realise it was a book about outer space and a futuristic world until I started reading it. I’m not really into books that aren’t set in reality so I didn’t love this, but I did like the two main characters and that got me through.

My seventh and last read of January was The Forgotten Hours by Katrin Schumann. I really enjoyed this book despite, at times, feeling a little uneasy reading it. A father is jailed after being found guilty of raping his daughter’s friend and, as he prepares to be released from jail, his daughter digs into the past in an attempt to discover what really happened during those forgotten hours.

New Posts in January...

Will I Make it to 40 Countries Before I Turn 30?

The Places I Probably Won’t Return to

My 2019 Goals

Dealing with Uncertainty as a Freelancer

All The Books I Read in 2018

My 2018 Travels

What to Wear on a Princess Cruise

What’s happening in February?

I’m heading to Amsterdam for 4 days this month for my future sister-in-law’s hen weekend! There are 14 girls going and we’ve got lots planned while we’re there. Amsterdam is a city I really like and I can’t wait to be back there. If you have any Amsterdam tips leave them in the comments below!

And that’s it for another month! As always, thank you for taking the time to check in to my blog and read about all my adventures and musings. If you’re not already then please follow along on Twitter and Facebook to stay even more up to date.  

Emma x