March Reads

It’s time to share what I read in March.

In case you missed it, here’s what I read in January and here’s what I read in February. 

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James

This was a February Book of the Month* book. The story follows journalist Fiona Sheridan as she works on uncovering why anyone would ever want to restore the rumored, haunted boarding school, Idlewood Hall. The story goes between 1950 and 2014 and was a really good book with an ending I didn’t see coming.

Sex, Jesus and the Conversations the Church Forgot by Mo Isom

In a world that is so saturated with sex, author Mo Isom shares her testimony and gives an honest look at the conversations the church forgot to have. She goes where few Christian authors have gone. It was a good read even though parts were redundant. I would recommend this book to youth workers and high school and college age students.

Other People’s Houses by Abbi Waxman

This was my March Book of the Month Club* book. It was a quick and easy read but definitely more chick-lit like than I usually read. Also? A lot of language. Frances Bloom is carpool mom extraordinaire- always available for her kids and her neighbors but when she discovers one of the other neighborhood moms having an affair, everything goes haywire. One thing the book did well was examine the difficulties of divorce and separation on children.

Hunger by Roxane Gay

This one was HEAVY. This was a memoir that I learned about on a podcast at the end of last year so I added it to my list and as an add on one month with Book of the Month*. Roxanne writes about her lifelong weight struggles and the underlying reasons for her overeating and weight gain. It felt like reading the pages of her journal. It was long and it was heavy.

*Interested in joining Book of the Month? Here’s my link– use YESPLZ for a free book when you join.

February Reads

Here’s the books I read in February [and if you missed my January reads, you can see those right here.] As always, you can follow along book by book on Instagram- #SamaraReads2018

After the Eclipse by Sarah Perry

I learned about this book on the Smartest Person in the Room podcast- coined as one of the best books of 2017, I knew I had to read it. It was a really hard, devastating read but also important. When the author was just 12 years old, her mother was brutally attacked and ultimately murdered while she slept in the room next door. Now in adult hood she writes about waking up, what she heard, what she saw and the aftermath of living without a mother. This book took me longer than normal because it was hard to read, it’s hard to think of a 12 year old going through such trauma and the aftermath of being shipped back and forth between family members.

Two Girls Down by Louisa Luna

This was my January Book of the Month* book. A mother’s worst nightmare, her two daughters are taken during broad daylight from a strip mall parking lot. A former bounty hunter and ex-cop team up to find the sisters and put the pieces of the puzzle together. It was an intense, somewhat scary read but really well written.


The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn

Once I started this one I didn’t want to put it down. Such a thriller. This was a Book of the Month* book and while it’s 400+ pages, it’s a quick read. A homebound woman suffering from agoraphobia [fear of going outside] sees something from her window with grave consequences. It’s being made into a movie by Fox. Really good read.

The Tech Wise Family by Andy Crouch

If you’re looking for ways to create healthy boundaries for yourself and your family, this is a good book to start with. Written in a Christian perspective, some of it I didn’t relate with it but still other pieces of it were quite apropos. Raising kids in an iPhone generation is hard.


An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

This was my February Book of the Month* club book and it did NOT disappoint. [It’s also Oprah’s book club book right now, so I expect you’ll be seeing and hearing a lot about this one.] Just a year into their marriage, Roy is wrongly convicted and sent to serve a 12 year sentence in jail. Can their marriage survive while he’s behind bars just a year into their marriage? When the conviction gets overturned five years in, he is ready to return to his life again but is his wife? This was a really bittersweet read. I really enjoyed it.

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

Full disclosure: When I kept hearing about this book I assumed it was about make up and had NO interest in reading it. I was wrong. After hearing Rachel Hollis on a podcast about a month ago, I was intrigued and started following her on Instagram [one of my favorite follows] and knew I had to read her book. She goes through all the lies she once believed and had to overcome to become who she was meant to be. She writes from a Christian perspective but is so real and so raw. I have a feeling this will be one of my top books at the end of the year.

*Book of the Month Club was one of my favorite 2017 discoveries. Each month you’re given the option of five books, you choose one on the 1st and it’s shipped directly to you. Join now with code: YESPLZ for a free book.

*Affiliate links were used in this post. That means, if you use my links and purchase a book, I get a small percentage back. Purchases won’t cost you more or less, but it will help fund my book habit which I in turn share with you.

January Reads

At the request of several I decided that this year I’d recap my books each month [likely with a top ten post to still come at the end of the year] but this way you can get an idea of the books I’m reading throughout the year. In January, I read: Little Fires Everywhere by […]

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Things to Know Before You Go to The Wiz at Children’s Theatre Company

This past weekend, I was able to attend one of the opening weekend shows for Children’s Theatre Company and Penumbra Theatre’s production of The Wiz. The modern day twist of the classic story was very well done by a star studded cast and deserved the standing ovation it received at the end. Here’s a few […]

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My Favorite Podcasts

If 2016 was the year I [re]-discovered reading, 2017 was the year I discovered podcasts. Call me late to the party but I really, really didn’t understand the whole podcast thing for a long time. But it’s actually super easy [especially on iPhone] and there are quite a few podcasts I enjoyed or ended up […]

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Books I’m Gifting This Season

Several people I know have been looking for book suggestions for Christmas. I love gifting good books. And if they are pretty to look at, even better. Here’s a few of my favorites this season for gifting: [You can click on the images to go directly to Amazon for more information or to order.] Little People […]

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Ten Years Gone

On Thursday, December 13th, 2007 at 1:05 a.m. my mother, my mumsy, passed away. She left the pain and the illness she’d been living with and fighting seven months and went home to her heavenly home. Ten years ago today my mom left us and in so many ways she left us prepared for her death. Details […]

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My Best Reads of 2017

At the end of 2016, I decided to challenge myself to read 52 books in 2017. It had seemed that throughout 2016 I had fallen back in love with reading and really wanted to spend more time discovering great books and new authors and just find time doing something I loved. [This meant for most […]

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The Allstate Foundation and WE Day Remind Us That Good Starts Young

This post was sponsored by The Allstate Foundation. All opinions are mine. When it seems as though every day news headlines are more and more depressing, it can be easy to become frustrated with the status of this world in which we live and many of us are raising children. But I am finding that […]

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How The Grinch Stole Christmas Now Open at Children’s Theatre Company

This past weekend, Miss F and I went on a date to the Children’s Theatre Company to see this year’s holiday productions- How the Grinch Stole Christmas. How the Grinch Stole Christmas is one of Children’s Theatre Company’s [CTC] trademark shows. It premiered at CTC in 1994 and is the only Minnesota theatre that can […]

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