Monthly Wrap-Up: January

Well, that’s the first month of 2021 done, can you believe it? (I definitely can’t!).

I would love to say that January was a month of fun and catching up for lost time but, unfortunately, Covid The Plan Canceller was still going strong.

Rather than dwell on that, though, I thought I’d start posting monthly wrap-up posts sharing what I watched, read and listened to.

Let’s start with TV shows. As much as I love books and baking as a way to escape every day life, there’s nothing better than getting comfy on the couch, with or without snacks (let’s face it, always with snacks), losing yourself in the telly. The first thing I watched – and definitely binge-watched – was Bridgerton.

Everyone and their dog has watched this Netflix show (which found its way on our TVs in December 2020) but why wouldn’t you watch a show full of fit, well dressed people in Regency era Britain? Admittedly, I was pretty sceptical about it at first because I’ve never been a massive fan of period, costume dramas (and I also never finished Gossip Girl, the show everyone has been comparing this to) but – wow – I loved it.

The costumes were exquisite, the scenery was gorgeous and I loved the idea of putting popular, modern songs in the background of the traditional dance scenes (even if it did make me pine for the time I could dance – although a lot less co-ordinated and choreographed- with my mates in crowded bars).

Next up, I watched the first two series of Big Mouth. I’m not big on cartoons, although I did really like Adventure Time in my teens, but this was a hit for me…a surprise one though!

It’s not every day you watch shows with inappropriate monsters and hormonal teenagers, but Big Mouth takes this (previously unexplored) genre in its stride. It’s funny, it’s informative and sometimes you find yourself thinking how was that allowed?! Saying that, I feel like humour and fun is just what we needed in January and this show is definitely full of it.

On my friend’s recommendation (in part because we both fancy the lead actor), I watched A Teacher. I went into this one completely blind, so I didn’t know what I was getting into at all.

Whilst superbly acted, and the soundtrack is also brilliant, there’s no denying the subject matter is intense. Though it was hard to digest, and made me angry at times, I think it’s an important subject matter to think about and portray on screen.

Next up I watched Finding Alice. This was definitely not what I anticipated- from the brief trailers I’d seen. It was heartbreaking, sad but also quite funny as well.

Sometimes you rooted for the characters, other times you were frustrated with them. The only thing I wasn’t too happy about was the open ending, as there were so many things that needed tying up.

The last series I watched this month was It’s a Sin. It was vibrant, fun, hilarious yet heartbreaking. So brilliantly acted, and informative, it made me realise there is so much more to that moment in history – and the people who experienced it – than everyone thought.

Now, onto movies. I think we all hoped 2021 would be the start of amazing new films being released, and cinemas would reopen, but that hasn’t been the case exactly. Though I am really missing going to the cinema, thankfully, Netflix and Amazon Prime have still provided me with stuff to watch (plus, you can’t pause a movie in the cinema to go and get more snacks – so I’m counting my blessings!).

The first movie I watched this month was Yesterday. I’ve already seen this before but I still throughly enjoyed the Beatles-centric film, full of their greatest hits and other lesser known songs. I’m not a massive fan of the band – despite being from the very city they came from – but I loved the fun, romance and British humour in the film.

The second movie I watched this month was Wild Target. It’s not a new film but it’s one that must’ve missed my attention when it was released. It’s funny, thrilling and has a very quirky premise (plus I feel like any film with Bill Nighy in is going to be good – by default).

The third movie I watched this month was Baby Teeth. I’d not seen this film – but had thought about going to see it back when places were open – but I’m glad I decided to put it on one night. It’s moving, it’s wonderfully shot and it’s also heartbreakingly sad (Note: watch with plenty of tissues).

The fourth movie I watched this month was Promising Young Woman. I’d not heard of this one so I had no idea what to expect. It was darkly funny in places, sad in others and the ending was wild.

The fourth movie I watched this month was Saint Francis. This was a new release on Netflix recently and it only took one quick watch of the trailer for me to want to watch it. It’s funny in places, a little bit sad in others and it’s an interesting watch.

The fifth movie I watched this month was The Lie. I’d heard about this film a while back but hadn’t got round to watching it. It was brilliantly paced, fascinating and one of those films that keeps you guessing until the end.

The last movie I watched this month was Queen and Slim. I wanted to watch this film a while ago. It was so well acted, funny in places but heartbreaking in others. I think this is a film that people will think about – and talk about – for a long time.

You might remember I mentioned in my Reading Goals for 2021 post that one of my goals is to read 50 books like last year. Whilst I haven’t made great headway with this goal so far (it is only January after all!), I managed to read 5 books this month – some for blogs tours and others to get lighten my NetGalley TBRs!

The first book I read this month was Asking for a Friend by Andi Osho. This was a contemporary romance full of female friendship, figuring life out and finding out dating isn’t as easy as you thought.

The second book I read this month was Victoria Park by Gemma Reeves. This was a contemporary novel about place, connections and people.

The third book I read this month was Before I Saw You by Emily Houghton. This was a contemporary romance about injury, recovering and falling in love.

The fourth book I read this month was Ever Alice. This was a retelling of a classic, full of intrigue, exciting moments and great characters.

The final book I read this month was Married at First Swipe. This was a contemporary romance about family, finding love and figuring things out.

Anyone who follows the blog – or knows me personally – will know music is one of my favourite things. I love going to concerts (or maybe loved is more accurate, cheers Covid!), listening to music and finding out more about songs and artists.

Every Monday since January 4th, I’ve posted my Music Mondays posts – sharing 5 tracks I’ve listened to (and loved) each week.

As well as those tracks, my favourite releases this month were Garden of Eden by Billie Marten, Eugene by Bull, Collapsed in Sunbeams by Arlo Parks and What a Day by Ben Howard.

🗓 🗓

So that’s it, my monthly wrap up for January. What did you read, watch and listen to this month? Let’s chat in the comments 💬.

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