Monthly Wrap Up: December 2021

Before we move into the end of year content for real, I wanted to quickly have a look at what December looked liked reading-wise. December was a true mixed bag for me, for while I completely failed with Blogmas (I’m shattered and so disappointed with myself for not pushing through), I did manage to read twelve books (mostly in audiobook format) and reading-wise the month was rather productive.

In December I read a grand total of twelve books, which worked out to be 2892 pages. This works out to be slightly higher than my monthly average for the year of 2672 pages and comes as my fifth highest month for the year page count wise. Of these twelve books, I read four of the books physically, seven as audiobooks and one ebook. Of the books, four were five-star reads, five were four-star reads, and three were two-star reads. Keeping with what I think my 2021 reading year was, most of the books I read were written for adults: with nine books for adults, two young adult titles and one children’s picture book.

Of the twelve books I read this month, ten of the books were festive reads of some sort. I’m actually really pleased with this count but wish I could have snuck some more in, as it seemed like almost every day in December I was learning about new festive books that I desperately wanted to read.

Most excitingly though, my last book of the year was a buddy read with my friend Brooke, and it became one of my top ten books of the year …it’s probably actually closer to my top three of 2021!

I particpated in two readathons with mixed results. Firstly the Historical Romance Readathon, where I was able to read two historicals but was not successful in getting a bingo, and secondly The Festive Readathon where I hit three Bingos by reading There is Something About Merry and The Holiday Switch.

I love a good Christina Lauren book, so I was really excited to dive into this one in December. While I enjoyed aspects of the book, this book mostly left me asking: Is that it? It was an intriguing set up, but while I loved Maelyn, the hero was not particularly someone I warmed to given the story’s set up. There were some utterly adorable scenes between the two though.

Rating: 3 stars

This was the only picture book I read in December and it was an absoutle delight. Is there anything more iconic and truly Aussie than Santa coming around on the firetruck in the lead up to Christmas?

Rating: 5 Stars

The Love Hypothesis is battling it out for my top read of 2021. Seriously this book was top tier and I can not recommend it enough. Filled with popular tropes likes slow-burn romance, fake-dating and grumpy-sunshine, this book is sizzling and yet so utterly sweet and adorable. I plan to have a full review of all my thoughts in early 2022, but for now READ THIS BOOK because it is EPIC.

Rating: 5 stars

There’s Something About Merry by Codi Hall was a surprise pick (I just needed an audiobook to listen to on the way to work) but it was a super cute festive romance that honestly surprised me. The book is a little on the slow side, and a touch longer than it perhaps needed to be, but if you are looking for a fun read, than I highly recommend this one.

Rating: 4 stars

Eleven Pipers Piping by Pamela Hart was an anticpated read for me and it did not disappoint. A short novella lengh historical romance that has all the feels, this historical is a great read, whether it be Christmas or not!

Rating: 4 Stars

The Perfect Waltz by Anne Gracie is book two in the Merridew Sisters series and so much fun. Gracie’s writing is a breathe of fresh air, with funny and charming characters that worm their way into your heart. I was eagerly sitting on the edge of my seat throughout this historical, eagerly waiting to see where Gracie would take us next.

Rating: 4 stars

The Holiday Switch by Tif Marcelo is the perfect festive read for YA book lovers. I’m still perfecting my thoughts on this book, but I highly recommend reading it.

Rating: 4 Stars

Window Shopping by Tessa Bailey was a bookclub read and holy crap did this book knock my socks off! This is my first Bailey book, but after devouring this one in less than two days, it is most certaintly not my last. This book walked the line of being acceptably festive (takes place over the two week period before Christmas, features Christmas windows for an up market store, Christmas Party) read and an organic, but believable romance.

I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this one, and think it was perhaps my favourite festive read of the year!

Rating: 5 Stars.

Similarly to There’s Something About Merry by Codi Hall, If The Fates Allow by Rainbow Rowell was picked up simply because I needed an audiobook to listen to and I couldn’t make up my mind. I enjoyed this one, but set during COVID times, it was also a raw read that left me with mixed feelings.

Rating: 3 Stars

Likwise, another random audio pick, Oh. What. Fun by Chandler Baker was a mystery festive read that left me … well a little unsatsified to be honest. While the story was ultimately okay, I had no idea where this story was going at times, which while a good thing for a mystery novel, was just a bit confusing due to the storytelling. The book is narrated by the children of the missing mother, and while I disliked the kids and sided with the Mother, I can still appreciate Baker’s writing for what it was.

Rating: 3 Stars

Having listened earlier in the month to There’s Something About Merry, I decided to go back and give the first book a try in the series, and I really enjoyed this friends-to-lovers read. This was my last festive read of the year, and it certaintly helped me get ready for Christmas. Be warned though there are some darker undertones to this story.

Rating: 4 stars.

Bright Side by Kim Holden was decided as a my last book of the year, well and truly in advance as I buddy read this with my friend Brooke. This book … was everything. It was the best way to end my 2021 reading year, but it also broke me into a thousand pieces and I’m not ashamed to admit that I cried for the last hour and half of this audiobook straight!

Bright Side is currently a contender for my top read of 2021, and is defintely in my top three no matter what.

Rating: 5 stars

If you have stuck around and made it to the end of this post, THANK YOU!

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