Whether you prefer to leaf through or mull over this gloomy article, you will certainly experience the joylessness of an English winter with Tim Bowen's latest collection of lonely phrasal verbs.

February in the northern hemisphere has got to be one of the most depressing months. It’s the time of year when many people long for (want very much) some sunshine and dream of jetting off (flying) to somewhere warmer.

Within minutes of arriving at their destination, they would be lapping up (enjoying it and keen to get more of it) the sunshine, lounging around (relaxing doing nothing) the hotel pool and luxuriating in (enjoying something that is very pleasant, comfortable or relaxing) the beautiful surroundings. 

The reality is that you are still stuck in your office listening to your colleagues jabbering away (talking quickly in a nervous or excited way) on the telephone as the work mounts up (gets much larger in stages) on your desk.

You are lumbered with (given a job or responsibility you do not want) a load of boring paperwork that you leaf through (turn the pages quickly without looking at them carefully) listlessly, mulling over (thinking carefully about) the possibility of taking a few days off and wondering if you can muster up (find) the courage to ask your boss if you can take a holiday next week.

Then you spend the weekend moping around (spending time with no particular purpose, feeling bored or unhappy) at home because it’s too cold to go out and the days seem to merge into one another (combine so that one is no longer clearly separate from the other). You wonder if you’ll actually manage to last out (survive) until the warmer weather finally arrives, if it ever does.