March Reads: The List

On the first day of the year, I laid out my 2018 reading goals.

Update on My Goals: spring 2018 has been one of the most challenging of my ten-year teaching career. I can’t go into details on the reasons, mainly due to student confidentiality and correctional facility rules, but know that I am going to be okay, and that I want to keep reading. I’ve taken advantage of my two-hour round-trip commute to the correctional facility by listening to audio books, which is why I reviewed Janet Mock’s Redefining Realness even though it wasn’t on the list. I finally finished all the books on the list for January and have half of February covered. March means spring break, and I’m hoping to get back on track during that one blissful week of reading. Either way, I want to keep putting up my montly to-read posts so I don’t get discouraged.

Here’s what’s on the list for March:

#1 Fat Fiction: I’ll be reading Fat Bodyguards, the follow-up to Fat Assassins. *SO PUMPED*

Brief Description: “Still skittish from their last job, the girls are reluctant to sign on until he promises – no killing required. They quickly learn that being assassins was a helluva lot easier than protecting the mobster’s spoiled teenage daughter, Princess.”

fat bodyguards
I can’t wait to learn why they’re in the desert.

#2 The Oldest Book Shelved: In This Light: New and Collected Stories by Melanie Rae Thon was purchased September 23, 2011 at a reading given by Thon. I even picked her up from the airport.

Brief Description: “This selection of Melanie Rae Thon’s stories showcases her breathtaking ability to become each one of her characters, to move inside the bodies and minds of the dispossessed. One woman speaks for them all: ‘I’m your worst fear. But not the worst thing that can happen.’”

in this light.jpg

#3 Newest Book Shelved on Goodreads: In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware was a book I picked up just this past November. Someone donated it in the teacher’s lounge.

Brief Description: Women gather in a house in the woods for a bachelorette party and things get a little murder-ish. On NPR, the author said the setting was inspired by the movie Scream in which no one seems capable of closing their blinds so the killer can’t see in.

dark wood

#4 Random Pick: Whiskey & Ribbons by Leesa Cross-Smith, a novel based on a short story I read and loved in Cross-Smith’s collection, Every Kiss a War.

Brief Description: “Evi—a classically-trained ballerina—was nine months pregnant when her husband Eamon was killed in the line of duty on a steamy morning in July. Now, it is winter, and Eamon’s adopted brother Dalton has moved in to help her raise six-month-old Noah.”

whiskey and ribbons.jpg



  1. I hope you’ll enjoy Fat Bodyguards. It’s always all that much better when the second in a series is as good as the first. And I’ve heard the Ware is very good; hope you’ll like that.

    • I thought The Woman in Calling Ten was a little goofy, but it was chosen by my book club. I tried to talk them into Dark, Dark Wood instead because the author said she was inspired by one of my favorite movies, 1996’s Scream.

      • Ohhh, I love Scream too. And it’s STILL good!

        It’s good to have books to fall into when work/life is stressful. What do non-readers do?! (You know it’s really bad when you can’t read.) I hope you get to all the reading you want to do in March. (I’ve wondered about Thon’s short stories; I might have read one or two, but I’ve never read an entire collection, not enough to really get a sense of her voice.)

  2. Sounds like an interesting mix! Somehow I wouldn’t have thought of you as reading the likes of Ruth Ware but I’m intrigued to hear your thoughts on it.

    I’m glad to hear you’re going to be OK after a challenging month – teaching in a correctional facility must be very different to your other work. I know when I worked with teenage boys with behavioural problems, there was a constant feeling of intensity that I never really experienced in other areas of work, which made it both more difficult and more rewarding. Cliché, I know, but give yourself time to process your feelings properly…

    • I’m mostly trying to figure out how to think of each individual. They are VERY smart, but also isolated from society. I read Ruth Ware’s book The Woman in Cabin Ten for book club, but I didn’t love it. I was more drawn to this, her first novel, so I’m happy to read it.

  3. Sorry to hear you’ve been having a tough time. You have some good books lined up here. I downloaded both the Fat Assassins books but have had some books I’ve HAD to read for external reviews or my one challenge I’m doing. I’ll save your review of the second one when it comes!

  4. I was wondering why the donkey in the background looked so mad? Maybe the donkey is the spoiled princess?!

    I have In a Dark, Dark Wood, but haven’t read it yet. I don’t think I will ever be able to be in a house in the woods now and not close the curtain (and that’s without having read the book!).

    Sorry to hear your work has been so challenging lately. I hope you have a great March Break with lots of reading!

  5. Interested to see what you think of In a Dark, Dark Wood. I wasn’t a huge fan of The Woman in Cabin 10, but I’d been willing to try out another book by her. Happy March and I hope you get a chance to make the most of your spring break!

    • I wasn’t really a fan of The Woman in Cabin Ten, either. My book club picked it, and while I wasn’t enthused by the choice, I decided to listen to the audio book. That helped improve my opinion of the novel. The voice actress was very good.

  6. Ooh lots of good ones here! Hearing so much buzz on Leesa Cross-Smith’s book, eager to hear what you think.

  7. I’m so sorry you are having a rough time right now in your professional world. I have complete faith that whatever it is that you are going through, you will get through it. I’ll be thinking about you!

    I’m excited to see what you think of Ruth Ware’s book! I’ve never read one of her books, but she is coming to Cincinnati in June. Of course I’ll be on vacation in Charleston when she’s here because that’s the kind of luck I have lol

    • I want in love with The Woman in Cabin Ten, but from what I’ve heard Dark, Dark Wood if right up my alley.

      Thank you for thinking of me. I’m on spring break now, so I’ve got some space to think and get it together.

  8. It sounds like it’s been rough. I’m glad to know that you’ll be okay. I haven’t had much time for reading lately either. When I do, it’s been entirely non-fiction. For some reason, though I keep adding novels to my TBR list, I haven’t read a single piece of fiction in 2018 (except for the books I read with the kids).

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