5 Books I Recommend – March 2020

ā€œA library is infinity under a roof.ā€
– Gail Carson Levine

5 Books I Recommend

Every month I share the best of what I’ve finished reading. Here are books I recommend from March. See all my recommended books here.


1. The Library Book
by Susan Orlean

The Library Book

I love libraries. So naturally I loved this book.

Our library closed its doors two weeks after I finished reading this book and recording the video. I don’t think I had even considered the possibility. But of course I understand their wise decision. And of course I’m heartbroken.

[click here if you can’t see the 1-minute book review, The Library Book]

2. Live in Grace, Walk in Love
A 365-Day Journey
by Bob Goff

Life in Grace Walk in Love Bob Goff

This little book has been a lifesaver of encouraging words in this season. Bob Goff points you to what really matters, loving God and loving people in every way you can, no strings attached. Everything else is extra. He shares the best stories, making you laugh along the way and sometimes cry, too. 

[My review here of Live in Grace]

3. Talking to Strangers
What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know
by Malcolm Gladwell

Such an interesting book! Gladwell shows through stories that we don’t always make proper assumptions about strangers. And those misconceptions lead to problems. “We should accept the limits of our ability to decipher strangers.”

4. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone
A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed
by Lori Gottlieb

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone

Another excellent book! Gottlieb is a therapist herself who decides she needs a therapist after a breakup. Her honesty and insights about her own therapy as well as her patients makes for such interesting stories that we can apply to our own lives. 


5. The Turn of the Key
by Ruth Ware

The Turn of the Key

This suspenseful mystery will keep you turning the pages, but without the violence that often comes with mystery novels. This one is about a nanny, Rowan Caine, who accepts a dream job in the Scottish Highlands working for a family with young children, but something goes terribly wrong. 

Reading Now

  • The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry
    How to Stay Emotionally Healthy and Spiritually Alive in the Chaos of the Modern World
    by John Mark Comer
  • Write Better
    A Lifelong Editor on Craft, Art, and Spirituality

    by Andrew T. Le Peau
  • Upstream
    The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen
    by Dan Heath
  • A Spark of Light
    by Jodi Picoult
  • I’ve Seen the End of You
    A Neurosurgeon’s Look at Faith, Doubt, and the Things We Think We Know
    by W. Lee Warren
  • Human(kind)
    How Reclaiming Human Worth and Embracing Radical Kindness Will Bring Us Back Together
    by Ashlee Eiland

* * *

What good book are YOU reading this month? Please share in the comments.

My books on Goodreads
More books I recommend

sharing with Modern Mrs. Darcy

32 thoughts on “5 Books I Recommend – March 2020

  1. Martha J Orlando

    I’m just about finished with 1776, which has been a fascinating read. Next up is Kennedy and Nixon. Yes, I’m reading some history!
    Thanks for the excellent recommendations, Lisa. I do like the sound of that mystery, so may have to order it as our libraries are closed, too.

  2. Pat

    Thank you for these book recommendations. I’ve been wanting to read The Library book for along time and I’ll have to see if it is available on our library’s audio page. I loved your video review! I am missing visiting our library very much but thankfully I had bought some used books before it did and have a stack to read. Stay well!

  3. Laurie

    Thanks for the good book recommendations, Lisa. I just started reading “Everybody Lies” on your recommendation. I like it a lot so far. I have been thinking about getting “Talking to Strangers”. I think this post is the nudge I need to get it. Thank you!

  4. Joanne

    I think you sold me on The Library Book. We have an experience of a library fire where I live…only in my case it was a library earthquake that destroyed the library before I was one meaning that I grew up effectively without one (or without a fully functioning one anyway) and our society is in some ways re-learning the place of a library in society (I think). Anyway, your quick vid review resonated. Love the whispering post quote.

  5. floyd

    Great list. Gladwell’s is definitely on my list. Everything he does is excellent.

    I’m reading, still reading, Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens. What a wordsmith she is.

    Thanks for sharing. Love that accent!

  6. Beth Steffaniak

    I always love a good Bob Goff book! I’ll have to check that one out! And the mystery one really tugs at me. I’m not much of a fiction reader, but do love the way you’ve described this one, especially since it’s set in Scotland! Hope you are staying well and enjoying some uninterrupted reading time, my friend! Pinning this!

  7. Trudy

    Thank you for all your recommendations, Lisa. I just finished reading the Heart of the Frontier Series, a historical fiction series about the 1840s frontier, by Tracie Peterson. Very moving… Now the library is closed, though like you, I understand why. The library does offer online versions, but I’ve never used it. I do read Kindle books sometimes, but I prefer to hold the “real” book in my hands. When I get bummed about it, I remember how there are so much worse things to be sad about in the crisis we’re going through. I finally got to reading your last post, and yes, I’m so sad right along with you. I also worry a lot about the domestic violence that is increasing. My heart aches for the spouses and children. Love and blessings of safety, strength, and peace!

  8. Carolyn Seymour Thomas

    SO MANY good ones here, Lisa! I loved Gottlieb’s book…it was a fast and great read for me. I, too, have a very big space in my heart for libraries, but I think I’ll have to wait until mine reopens to read that one because, well…sad. I noticed I’ve Seen the End of You on your current list.; by any chance have you read Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander? You might find it an interesting follow-up, if you haven’t already read it. I just had to set aside Year of Wonders, which came in on audio just before COVID-19 really took off. I just can’t bear it at the moment. I’m enjoying Alexander McCall Smith right now. He’s (sort of) satisfying my itch to go to Scotland and the Isabel Dalhousie books are just a nice, easy escape. Happy reading šŸ™‚

  9. Karen Friday

    Lisa, all these books look tremendous. Bob Goff’s book especially stands out to me. I heard someone say once, at the end of our lives, loving God and loving people will be what matters most. Thanks for sharing.

  10. bill (cycleguy)

    Hi Lisa! Sorry I’m late to this party. Thanks for the recommendation to Bob’s book. I have read his other two and loved them. This crisis has my reading into afterburner in some ways. I am rereading Confronting Christianity by Rebecca McLaughlin. I have What is the Gospel by Greg Gilbert in my cue to read. I also plan to read We Too by Mary Demuth. Resurrection Year by Sheridan Voysey. As well as several others. I am also listening to some great podcasts, which I never thought I could handle due to not being a multi-tasker. But I’ve enjoyed the interviews the ones I listen to have.

  11. Jean Wise

    Love your list. I just requested a new book I heard about today from my library – which is closed like yours – but still I was able to get the request in. Listened to NPR today and an interview about a book called The hot hand: the mystery and science of streaks. You know when we are in the zone or a sports person makes lots of points – is this real or is there some way to increase our chances for a winning streak? I would love to be able to model more creativity. Guess I will have to wait to get the book to see if there are any tricks to this science.

  12. Joanne

    I am really missing our library these last few days. I too understand why they are closed but reading books from my Kindle is just not the same. Plus we see our librarians so much they’re like family too and I can’t help wondering how they’re doing. Thank you so much for sharing your suggestions with us at Encouraging Hearts and Home. Pinned.

  13. Jordan | Read. Eat. Repeat.

    The Turn of the Key sounds great! I have a low obsession with books set in the Scottish Highlands and I like that it doesn’t have as much violence as books in this genre sometimes do, so I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for the recommendation!

  14. Stacie @SincerelyStacie

    I listened to the audio of The Library Book this last month too. I’m on our library board and it was such a difficult decision to close our library during this time. Our librarian is still working and checking out materials to patrons, then having them pick them up in the lobby, but we can do that because we are such a small town (700 pop).

  15. Elena Wiggins

    I have been wanting to read Maybe You Should Talk To Someone for so long!!!! Hoping to get to it once the library re-opens. I am looking forward to hearing your thoughts on The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry! I read it last month and reviewed it, which is linked in my name if interested!

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