125 episodes

Sarah’s Bookshelves Live is a weekly show featuring real talk about books and book recommendations from a featured guest. Each week, Sarah of the blog Sarah’s Bookshelves will talk with her guest about:

- 2 OLD BOOKS THEY LOVE
- 2 NEW BOOKS THEY LOVE
- 1 BOOK THEY DON’T LOVE
- AND 1 NEW RELEASE THEY’RE EXCITED ABOUT

I’m getting real about all things books and serving you up a bit of snark on the side.

Sarah's Bookshelves Live Sarah Dickinson | Sarah's Bookshelves

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 5 Ratings

Sarah’s Bookshelves Live is a weekly show featuring real talk about books and book recommendations from a featured guest. Each week, Sarah of the blog Sarah’s Bookshelves will talk with her guest about:

- 2 OLD BOOKS THEY LOVE
- 2 NEW BOOKS THEY LOVE
- 1 BOOK THEY DON’T LOVE
- AND 1 NEW RELEASE THEY’RE EXCITED ABOUT

I’m getting real about all things books and serving you up a bit of snark on the side.

    Keri Blakinger (Author of Corrections in Ink)

    Keri Blakinger (Author of Corrections in Ink)

    In Episode 119, Keri Blakinger joins me to discuss her debut memoir, Corrections in Ink, a mind-blowing personal story, also speaks to the broader issues of addiction and women in the prison system. Keri went from being an elite figure skater in her youth to being arrested for possession of heroin while a student at Cornell, and then serving two years in the New York prison system. In her memoir, Keri is self-reflective, sharing what is ultimately a hopeful and redemptive story, despite the dark places it goes along the way.

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Highlights When and why Keri decided to share her story in book form. How the pandemic impacted her journalism career and writing her memoir. The connection between her figure skating, her mental health, and her drug addiction. Some of the bigger surprises she experienced in prison. How Keri thinks she managed to overcome the statistics and “make good on a second chance.” An example of the ways inmates work around some of the arbitrary and unwritten rules of jail. All about ‘books in jail’: requesting and ordering books, time allotted to reading, access, and prison libraries. Keri’s personal reading experience in jail and covering this topic as a journalist. Current issues Keri is investigating within the prison system. Keri’s Book Recommendations [32:02] Two OLD Books She Loves
    Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro | Amazon | Bookshop.org [32:17] The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein | Amazon | Bookshop.org [33:56] Two NEW Books She Loves
    Leaving Isn’t the Hardest Thing by Lauren Hough | Amazon | Bookshop.org [37:30] Breathing Fire by Jaime Lowe | Amazon | Bookshop.org [39:33] One Book She DIDN’T LOVE
    Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn | Amazon | Bookshop.org [41:47] One NEW RELEASE She’s Excited About
    A Deal with the Devil by Pamela Colloff (November 2023) | [44:04] Last 5-Star Book Keri Read
    Mexican Gothic by Sylvia Moreno-Garcia | Amazon | Bookshop.org [47:20]
    Other Books Mentioned On Lynchings by Ida B. Wells-Barnett (new edition on November 15, 2022)  [26:43] Blood in the Water by Heather Ann Thompson [27:13] The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern [29:30] The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger [29:42] Orange Is the New Black by Piper Kerman [30:28] The Keep by Jennifer Egan [30:32] About Keri Blakinger Website | Twitter | Instagram
    Keri Blakinger is a Texas-based investigative reporter and the author of the Corrections in Ink, a memoir tracing her path from figure skating to heroin addiction to prison and, finally, to life as a journalist covering mass incarceration.  Currently reporting for The Marshall Project, her work covering criminal justice, has previously appeared in VICE, the New York Daily News, the BBC, and The New York Times. She previously worked for the Houston Chronicle and was a member of the Chronicle‘s Pulitzer-finalist team in 2018.  Her 2019 coverage of women’s jails for The Washington Post Magazine helped earn a National Magazine Award.

    • 49 min
    Editing Literary Fiction with Caroline Zancan (Senior Editor at Henry Holt)

    Editing Literary Fiction with Caroline Zancan (Senior Editor at Henry Holt)

    In Episode 118, Caroline Zancan, Senior Editor at Henry Holt, joins me for another episode in the Genre 101 series — this time with a twist.  Caroline answers behind-the-scenes questions about editing literary fiction, as well as a deep dive into the genre itself.  

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Announcements I’d love your feedback on the podcast!  Please take a moment to complete my 2022 Podcast Survey! Highlights How Caroline got into editing: right place, right time, and Craigslist. The varying college degrees, the wide range of colleagues’ previous careers, and whether there’s a typical career path to becoming an editor. The je ne sais quoi factor and determining if a book is for Henry Holt. The entire process of book acquisition at Henry Holt — from determining what books to pursue and bidding on manuscripts to the approval process. Caroline’s preference for dealing with an author’s agent. The execution of a compatible vision for the editor-author relationship. The “right” length for a book and editing big-name authors. What the heck is ‘literary fiction’ and why there seems to be a lack of consensus about this question. Current trends in the literary fiction world. Caroline’s Book Recommendations [39:19] Two OLD Books She Loves
    Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders | Amazon | Bookshop.org [39:33] Trust Exercise by Susan Choi | Amazon | Bookshop.org [41:25] Two NEW Books She Loves
    Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason | Amazon | Bookshop.org [42:33] Cult Classic by Sloane Crosley | Amazon | Bookshop.org [44:14] The Series of Books She DIDN’T Love
    Elena Ferrante Titles  [45:46] One NEW RELEASE She’s Excited About
    All This Could Be Different by Sarah Thankam Mathews (August 2, 2022) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [47:32] Last 5-Star Book Caroline Read
    Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason | Amazon | Bookshop.org [49:40] Other Books Mentioned We Wish You Luck by Caroline Zancan [2:00] Happiness by Heather Harpham [2:17] The Parking Lot Attendant by Nafkote Tamirat [2:21] Sleepwalk by Dan Chaon [2:29] Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance by Alison Espach [2:34] On Writing by Stephen King [29:08] Unlikely Animals by Annie Hartnett [40:48] I Was Told There’d Be Cake by Sloane Crosley [44:58] Look Alive Out There by Sloane Crosley [45:00] About Caroline Zancan On Twitter
    Caroline Zancan is a Senior Editor at Holt, acquiring literary and upmarket fiction and memoir, and the author of We Wish You Luck and Local Girls. She is a graduate of Kenyon College and holds an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars.  Caroline lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their children. 

    • 51 min
    Annie Hartnett (Author of Unlikely Animals)

    Annie Hartnett (Author of Unlikely Animals)

    In Episode 117, Annie Hartnett, author of Unlikely Animals, shares the intriguing backstory behind her new novel. She is wonderfully candid and shares interesting tidbits from the germ of the idea, through some of the editing process, all the way to the finished book and finding a publisher. 

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Highlights How interesting information transitions to the idea to write a book. The importance of voice in her stories. How she infuses comedy into her writing and embraces the potential for silliness. Annie shares the experience of having her second book under her belt and how that affects her confidence going forward. The difficulty in talking about and promoting a multi-faceted book. Cover design and summary decisions for Unlikely Animals. Why she chose to tell the story in the collective voice. The atmospheric place she lived when she began writing Unlikely Animals. Annie answers lightning round questions about some delightfully weird elements in the book. Annie’s Book Recommendations [33:09] Two OLD Books She Loves
    The Electric Woman by Tessa Fontaine | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [33:18] We Ride Upon Sticks by Quan Barry | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [34:56] Two NEW Books She Loves
    Walk the Vanished Earth by Erin Swan | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [36:30] More Than You’ll Ever Know by Katie Gutierrez | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [40:05] One NEW RELEASE She’s Excited About
    Now Is Not the Time to Panic by Kevin Wilson (November 8, 2022) | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [42:24] Last 5-Star Book Annie Read
    Sigh, Gone by Phuc Tran | Amazon | Bookshop.org : [46:26]
    Other Books Mentioned Rabbit Cake by Annie Hartnett : [1:20] The Last Chairlift by John Irving (October 18, 2022) : [20:54] The Mothers by Brit Bennett : [24:42] Our Town by Thornton Wilder : [28:04] Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders : [28:15] Wild by Cheryl Strayed : [34:13] Detransition, Baby by Torrey Peters : [35:27] When I’m Gone, Look for Me in the East by Quan Barry : [35:48] How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu : [37:16] Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel : [37:38] Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel : [38:19] Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber : [40:45] Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson : [42:45] The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson : [45:30] Perfect Little World by Kevin Wilson : [45:35] About Annie Hartnett Website | Twitter | Instagram
    In addition to her new book, Unlikely Animals, Annie Hartnett is the author of Rabbit Cake, which was listed as one of Kirkus Reviews’s Best Books of 2017 and a finalist for the New England Book Award. She has received fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and the Associates of the Boston Public Library. She studied philosophy at Hamilton College, has an MA from Middlebury College, and an MFA from the University of Alabama. When she began writing Unlikely Animals, she was living in the groundskeeper’s house in a cemetery. She now lives in a small town in Massachusetts with her husband, daughter, and darling border collie, Mr. Willie Nelson.

    • 48 min
    Micro Genres We Love with Susie (@NovelVisits)

    Micro Genres We Love with Susie (@NovelVisits)

    In Episode 116, Susie Boutry (@NovelVisits) joins me to talk about niching down from traditional genre categories into the micro genres we love.  Over the past year, I have picked up on some key themes and types of books that I can generally count on for successful reading. Today, we’re putting them all in one special episode as Susie and I bring you a delightfully overflowing list of the micro genres that work for us, books from each, and why we love them.

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Micro Genres We Love  [2:41] Books by Former or Current Attorneys [3:20] Sarah
    The Damage by Caitlin Wahrer | Amazon | Bookshop.org [5:08] & [6:11] Miracle Creek by Angie Kim | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:13] A Good Marriage by Kimberly McCreight | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:15]  The Boys’ Club by Erica Katz | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:18] All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:20] The Eddie Flynn Series by Steve Cavanagh [6:24] The Bad Muslim Discount by Syed M. Masood | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:29] Fake by Erica Katz | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:44] What Comes After by JoAnne Tompkins | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:52] Susie
    Whisper Network by Chandler Baker | Amazon | Bookshop.org [6:57] Frenzied but Favorable Family Dynamics [7:19] Sarah
    Commonwealth by Ann Patchett | Amazon | Bookshop.org [10:04]  The Dutch House by Ann Patchett | Amazon | Bookshop.org [10:05] Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane | Amazon | Bookshop.org [10:39] Olympus, Texas by Stacey Swann | Amazon | Bookshop.org [10:44]  Susie
    The Most Fun We Ever Had by Claire Lombardo | Amazon | Bookshop.org [8:31]  The Children’s Crusade by Ann Packer | Amazon | Bookshop.org [8:44] Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid | Amazon | Bookshop.org [9:07] French Braid by Anne Tyler | Amazon | Bookshop.org [9:13]  The Family Tabor by Cherise Wolas | Amazon | Bookshop.org [9:16] Suspenseful Books That Are Not Truly Thrillers,
    But That Publishers Market as Thrillers  [11:09] Sarah
    The Violin Conspiracy by Brendan Slocumb | Amazon | Bookshop.org [12:47]  My Sunshine Away by M. O. Walsh | Amazon | Bookshop.org [12:59] The Ballerinas by Rachel Kapelke-Dale | Amazon | Bookshop.org [13:31] The Cutting Season by Attica Locke | Amazon | Bookshop.org [13:46]  You Should Have Known by Jean Hanff Korelitz (also retitled as The Undoing for the tie-in edition) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [14:00]  Susie
    Our American Friend by Anna Pitoniak | Amazon | Bookshop.org [15:09]  The Golden Couple by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen | Amazon | Bookshop.org [15:16] Hell No! Women’s Stories  [16:22] Sarah
    Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus | Amazon | Bookshop.org [19:01]  Susie
    Circe by Madeline Miller | Amazon | Bookshop.org [17:27]  The Change by Kirsten Miller | Amazon | Bookshop.org [17:33] The Book of Essie by Meghan MacLean Weir | Amazon | Bookshop.org [17:46] Songs in Ursa Major by Emma Brodie | Amazon | Bookshop.org [18:05]  Hurricane Girl by Marcy Dermansky (June 14, 2022) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [18:12] City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert | Amazon | Bookshop.org [18:17]  The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah | Amazon | Bookshop.org [18:40]  Finlay Donovan Is Killing It by Elle Cosimano | Amazon | Bookshop.org [18:51]  Historical Fiction About Women Breaking the Stereotypes and Limitations of Their Time  [19:19] Sarah
    Loving Frank by Nancy Horan | Amazon | Bookshop.org [20:44]  Circling the Sun by Paula McLain | Amazon | Bookshop.org [21:13]  The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott | Amazon | Bookshop.org [21:24] The Lunar Housewife by Caroline Woods (June 14, 2022) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [21:31] Susie

    • 51 min
    Bonnie Garmus (Author of Lessons in Chemistry)

    Bonnie Garmus (Author of Lessons in Chemistry)

    In Episode 115, Bonnie Garmus, author of Lessons in Chemistry, discusses the inspiration behind her best-selling debut novel, sexism in the workplace, and the story behind Six-Thirty the dog. Plus, Bonnie’s book recommendations! 

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Introducing Summer Shelves (a companion to my Summer Reading Guide)…
    In addition to my annual 2022 Summer Reading Guide, I introduced Summer Shelves, a companion exclusively for Superstars Patrons ($7/mo). Summer Shelves features BACKLIST summer reading recommendations from over 25 former podcast guests and our team members. The Summer Shelves design is clean, crisp, and unique and is available in a PDF file format via Patreon. If you’d like to get the Summer Shelves companion guide, you can sign up to be a Superstars patron here. You’ll also get access to a monthly bonus podcast series called Double Booked (where Catherine or Susie and I share our own book recommendations in the same format as the big show) and my Rock Your Reading Tracker. Plus, as a patron you can listen to the monthly Superlatives bonus podcast episodes where I continue the discussion with every guest from the full-length episodes, as they answer 5 bookish “superlative” questions. Get Summer Shelves!
    Highlights Bonnie talks about her inspiration for Lessons in Chemistry and the main character, Elizabeth Zott, who began her book life in a previously unpublished book. Why Bonnie chose the professions featured in the book: scientist and television host on a cooking show. How Elizabeth’s rowing brings balance to the story. How her copywriting career played a role in the novel. The significance of the numerical names for the two dogs’ in Bonnie’s life: 99 (in her real life) and Six-Thirty (in the book). The real-life dog who inspired the fictional dog, Six-Thirty. The big message Bonnie would like both men and women to take away from the book. How Sarah and Bonnie feel about posthumously published work. Bonnie shares a little bit about her next book and how it compares to Lessons in Chemistry. Bonnie’s Book Recommendations [25:20] Two OLD Books She Loves
    The Secret History by Donna Tartt | Amazon | Bookshop.org [25:31] The Cider House Rules by John Irving | Amazon | Bookshop.org [27:35] Two NEW Books She Loves
    Free Love by Tessa Hadley | Amazon | Bookshop.org [28:56] Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel | Amazon | Bookshop.org [30:48] One Book She DIDN’T LOVE
    Billy Budd by Herman Melville | Amazon | Bookshop.org [33:15] One NEW RELEASE She’s Excited About
    The Second Sight of Zachary Cloudesley by Sean Lusk (June 9) | Book Depository [36:37] Last 5-Star Book Bonnie Read
    Nightbitch by Rachel Yoder | Amazon | Bookshop.org [38:25]
    Other Books Mentioned The Hearts Invisible Furies by John Boyne [3:20] The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt [26:24] A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving [28:43] The World According to Garp by John Irving [28:47] Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel [31:02] The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel [31:46] Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee [35:11] The Need by Helen Phillips [40:29] Other Links Six-Thirty the dog on Instagram
    About Bonnie Garmus Website | Twitter | Instagram
    Bonnie Garmus is a copywriter and creative director who has worked widely in the fields of technology, medicine, and education. She’s an open-water swimmer, a rower, and mother to two pretty amazing daughters. Born in California and most recently from Seattle, she currently lives in London with her husband and her dog, 99. Lessons in Chemistry is her first novel.

    • 42 min
    Summer 2022 Book Preview with Catherine (@GilmoreGuide)

    Summer 2022 Book Preview with Catherine (@GilmoreGuide)

    Welcome to the Summer 2022 Book Preview with Catherine of Gilmore Guide to Books!
    In this episode, Catherine and I share our most anticipated books coming out June through mid-August.  

    This post contains affiliate links, through which I make a small commission when you make a purchase (at no cost to you!).
    Introducing Summer Shelves (a companion to my Summer Reading Guide)… In addition to my annual 2022 Summer Reading Guide, I introduced Summer Shelves, a companion exclusively for Superstars Patrons ($7/mo). Summer Shelves features BACKLIST summer reading recommendations from over 25 former podcast guests and our team members. The Summer Shelves design is clean, crisp, and unique and is available in a PDF file format via Patreon. If you’d like to get the Summer Shelves companion guide, you can sign up to be a Superstars patron here. You’ll also get access to a monthly bonus podcast series called Double Booked (where Catherine or Susie and I share our own book recommendations in the same format as the big show) and my Rock Your Reading Tracker. Plus, as a patron you can listen to the quarterly bonus podcast episode series called Book Preview Extras! In these episodes, Catherine and I share at least 4 bonus books that we’re excited about that we did not share in the regular Preview episode.  Get Summer Shelves!
    Highlights The summer theme lands on the spectrum of female relationships — some healthy and some toxic.   Catherine is more optimistic for these summer releases. Debut novels make up 4 of Sarah’s 6 picks! Catherine and Sarah fall into an impromptu new game of Guess What Book This Sounds Like? Catherine shares a funny author meeting gaffe from her past. Catherine and Sarah share their #1 summer release picks. Summer 2022 Book Preview [2:33] June
    Sarah’s Picks:
    These Impossible Things by Salma El-Wardany (June 7) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [5:11] The Measure by Nikki Erlick (June 28) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [11:08] Catherine’s Picks:
    Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley (June 7) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [7:16] Tracy Flick Can’t Win by Tom Perrotta (June 7) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [14:46]  Girls They Write Songs About by Carlene Bauer (June 21) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [22:41]  July
    Sarah’s Picks:
    The Displacements by Bruce Holsinger (July 5) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [17:12]  Crying in the Bathroom by Erika L. Sánchez (July 12) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [25:12]  The Work Wife by Alison B. Hart (July 19) | Amazon [30:24]  Catherine’s Picks:
    Fellowship Point by Alice Elliott Dark (July 5) | Amazon [27:20] Sirens & Muses by Antonia Angress (July 12) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [34:15]  August
    Sarah’s Pick:
    Dirt Creek by Hayley Scrivenor (August 2) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [37:03]  Catherine’s Pick:
    Bookish People by Susan Coll (August 2) | Amazon | Bookshop.org [43:57] Other Books Mentioned Upgrade by Blake Crouch (July 12) [3:51]  Normal People by Sally Rooney [6:52]  Beautiful World, Where Are You by Sally Rooney [6:55]  There There by Tommy Orange [9:44] Brown Girls by Daphne Palasi Andreades [10:00] American Predator by Maureen Callahan [11:00] The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin [11:57]  Election by Tom Perrotta [14:51]  The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta [15:11]  The Gifted School by Bruce Holsinger [18:50]  Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel [19:53]  Fantasticland by Mike Bockoven [20:10]  Frances and Bernard by Carlene Bauer [22:54]  The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer [24:42] Love and Saffron by Kim Fay [24:50]  I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez [25:23]  A Very Punchable Face by Colin Jost [26:29]  Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid [32:05]  The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer [35:22]  The Ensemble by Aja Gabel [35:29]  The Ballerinas by Rachel Kapelke-Dale [35:33]  The Violin Conspiracy b

    • 48 min

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