What I’m Reading Now (3/4/19)

Well, I took another weekend away. This time a one-nighter with high school friends. It’s always so great to spend time with old friends, but I’m starting to realize something.

Each time I do this I fall really far behind with podcast work. Basically, I can manage the blog and the podcast in the time I have available without extra childcare if I essentially don’t live life. If I want to live life (including seeing friends on a weekend or going away for a weekend), I can’t keep up with the blog and a weekly podcast. So, I’m kicking around some ways to make this more sustainable over the long-term (ex: try out a bi-weekly schedule for the podcast this summer…or sooner). And, I’d certainly love to hear your suggestions (share them in the comments section or email me at sarahsbookshelves@gmail.com)!


Episode 9 of the Sarah’s Book Shelves Live podcast, featuring Gayle and Nicole from The Readerly Report Podcast came out last week! And, The Readerly Report Podcast is one of my favorite bookish podcasts, so give it a listen if you haven’t tried it yet!

Episode 10, featuring Kelly from The Well-Read Runner, is coming on Wednesday!

New on the Blog

  • March Book of the Month picks are due on Wednesday…I’ve got commentary on all the books plus and updated Judges Guide reflected the structural change BOTM made in February 2018.
  • 2019 Reader Survey…If you haven’t completed the reader survey yet, I’d love your feedback!
  • 2019 Rock Your Reading Tracker – I used my “Rock Your Reading Tracker” this year to track all my reading stats in real time and figure out who my best recommendation sources are…and, my reading QUALITY improved 42% from last year! The new and improved 2019 tracker is now available for $14.99…get more details here!

Hosted by The Book Date.
This post contains affiliate links (plus: here’s your Amazon Smile-specific affiliate link), through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).

I finished reading…

what I'm reading now


A Woman is No Manby Etaf Rum (March 5, 2019)
As promised, this novel is, in fact, an emotionally tough read. These women were in an impossible situation. But, I’m glad I read it because I learned about a different culture, even if it’s horrifying. And, I rooted hard for the women in this book. Mini Review coming.
Affiliate Link: Buy from Amazon

Maidby Stephanie Land (January 22, 2019) – AUDIOBOOK
I was interested in Land’s story of her experience falling into poverty after an unplanned pregnancy and her experience working as a maid while participating in numerous government programs. It certainly opened my eyes to her experience, but I also had some issues with it. Mini review coming in an audiobook round-up.
Affiliate Link: Buy from Amazon

I’m currently reading…

Before She Knew Him


Before She Knew Himby Peter Swanson (March 5, 2019)
I read Swanson’s thriller The Kind Worth Killing in December and I’m picky about my thrillers. So, I was excited that I actually liked it! This one is about a psychologically unstable suburban housewife who has suspicions about her neighbor. I’m just starting it, so don’t have any thoughts yet.

Upcoming reading plans…

If Daisy Jones & the Six doesn’t come in from the library…

White Elephant


White Elephantby Julie Langsdorf (March 26, 2019)
This suburban neighborhood drama has a Desperate Housewives vibe and was blurbed by Meg Wolitzer and Cristina Alger (author of The Banker’s Wife).

How was your reading week?

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  1. I had to cut back on blogging because I just couldn’t keep up so I know where you’re coming from.

    I didn’t find Maid as eye-opening as I’d hoped since I’d read a few other books on the subject already.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  2. Wasn’t A Woman just brutal? It’s hard to imagine living in such a culture. I’ll be interested to hear your thoughts on Maid. I have White Elephant coming up, too and am really excited to get to it.

    I’ve so many March and April books, plus am taking a two week break, so who knows how that will play out. I feel your pain with the blog AND the podcast. You have to have a life, too! Maybe every other week, but slightly longer? I’d like to hear 2 or 3 upcoming releases people are excited about.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  3. Beth F wrote:

    I like having an off-screen life so I’ve really cut back on social media in general. I couldn’t do both podcast and blog.

    I’ve decided to pass on Maid because I’ve read similar books. A Woman Is no Man looks good.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  4. I saw Before She Knew Him on another blog today, too…and I can’t wait to read it. I’m also curious about White Elephant.

    Enjoy your books and your week…and life, too.


    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      So…I finished Before She Knew Him and the ending went totally off the rails for me. Ugh.

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  5. Kathy Martin wrote:

    Nice looking bunch of books. I understand the conflict between life and social media. I’d pick life. Blogging and podcasting both would be too time-consuming for me. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  6. Wendy wrote:

    I’m struggling with finding time to keep up with blogging 3x/week. I cut back to twice weekly for a while–I may need to go back to that. I’m hoping that dropping the Sunday linkup will help. That was so time consuming.

    It’s definitely a labor of love!

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I hear you! Yeah – I think anything you organize takes even more time than a regular post. And you feel the pressure to never, ever take a week off from that particular post.

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  7. I was eyeing the Maid audiobook–I’ll be interested to see your review!

    I think with blogging and podcasting, you need to do what’s sustainable and still enjoyable. It’s so easy to burn out! As a listener (though I admittedly don’t really listen to any podcasts but yours, so I may not be representative), every two weeks would be enough for me. I think as long as people know when to expect it, they’re fine with the schedule you set.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Thanks for your thoughts! I agree – figure most people are fine with whatever as long as expectations are set appropriately. I also foresee having a harder time pinning down guests to record with in the summer given so many people travel, etc.

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  8. Curious to read your review of MAID

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  9. renee wrote:

    I agree with everyone’s comments, you’ve got to put your time where you’re the happiest! You’ve got to have time for life and reading. I’m with Susie on a longer bi-weekly podcast with more upcoming releases.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  10. Tina wrote:

    That Peter Swanson book is on my list too- interested to see what you think about it! Hope you get to do as much reading as you want this week.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Finished it. Wanted to throw it across the room by the end. Total gimmick ending.

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  11. White Elephant looks good. By all means go bi-weekly if the online stuff is getting in the way of life. Family, friends, and fun should come first.

    Posted 3.4.19 Reply
  12. Catherine wrote:

    I really hope Daisy Jones comes in for you because I finished it this morning and it’s either going to be 4.5 or 5, which is freaking me out because it would be my 3rd 5 star read in less than 30 days. Which would, as we both know, mean that the rest of my March reading is going to be a crapfest. I could be sunk under a book hangover!

    Posted 3.5.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      Man, I am jealous!!! So far, I only have one 5 star book this year, but at the halfway mark, Daisy Jones will probably be my second!

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  13. I’ll be interested to hear more about what you think of Maid! I keep mixing it up with The Trauma Cleaner, because they have such similar covers, but I don’t think I’ve read a review fo this one yet.

    Posted 3.6.19 Reply
    • Sarah Dickinson wrote:

      I’ve been seeing that one around!

      Posted 3.8.19 Reply
  14. Rachel Martin wrote:

    I started reading a book my husband just finished called Man Mission. It’s been good so far, makes me want to pack up and just travel for the rest of my life, which may not be a bad thing!! It’s called Man Mission by Eytan Uliel, he’s got a good book here!!

    Posted 3.7.19 Reply

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