New Year’s Resolutions

It’s been 9 months since a little someone changed my world and about 6 months since my last post. I just don’t have the drive to “just write reviews” anymore so SharleneSays will undergo a few changes this year. I need a passion to write and share, and ‘writing reviews that sound like something you’ve read before’ just isn’t as exciting to me as it once was.

So here are my hopes for 2018:



  • To update my site – I want it to ‘ooze’ how I feel. I want people to know me better when the visit my website.
  • To write one post a week – talk about exceeding my expectations. It might not be about books. It could be about mama life or make-up tips (I don’t wear make-up, so don’t count on this). It could even be the start of a novel. But post I must.
  • To comment on another persons blog every week – I need to connect with other people who think, act, write like me.

  • To read more – As always, this is at the top of my list. 2017 wasn’t a good year for reading, but it was a good year for life. I’ve kept my 2018 Goodreads Challenge to 20. That’s a realistic goal if you compare it to last year. But I plan on smashing it out the box!
  • To be more present – I’m one of two moderators on a Goodreads group called Book Lovin’ Kiwis and I’ve been a little tumbleweedy.

If I can do these few things, stay sane, be an awesome mum and wife, and have fun – then I’ll be happy.

So, these are my resolutions. Have you got any? Share them with me here or leave a link to your resolutions, I would love to chat more.

xoxo Sharlene

My hiatus explained

Enough said? Well, no. So here goes…

I have read a total of 10 books so far this year. This is a new low for me since I got my groove of reading back in 2012-ish, or was it earlier than that? Who cares. The point is, it’s very over halfway through the year and I am not going to reach 100.

Once I got pregnant, I knew that reading would become difficult, so I tried to read more while I thought I had the time. Boy that idea failed. I tried reading on the bus to and from work but morning sickness reared its ugly head and got in the way for 6 months or so. I wore the sea-bands, drank lots of water, ate a little healthier, but reading time eluded me.

Post-birth, I spent a lot of time in the hospital with my baby in the Neonatal unit. She was unexpectedly 6 weeks early. I was expecting early, just not THAT early. It was mostly cuddles with baby, feeding, expressing, watching and waiting for her in between feeds. I could watch her for hours. I would sit in the comfy chair and read a chapter here and there. I managed to finish a book! I thought this was my turning point, and it would only get better from there, but things haven’t really changed.

My little bundle is not so tiny anymore, and while I feel that I have more moments to read, my attention span has shortened. I find myself starting books and never being able to finish them. Since leaving hospital, I have read 1 e-book, and 2 baby books which I haven’t added to GR yet. I started reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone e-book out loud to baby but it expired before Harry made it to Hogwarts. The reading rut has come back.

Life carries on… it turns out reading is not my priority anymore, work isn’t either and I am perfectly okay with that. Although our baby girl had a rough start to life, I wouldn’t change her for the world. She is my priority.

Hey, and if it takes 80 children’s books to complete the GR challenge, well so be it. Every book counts. If I have time to write a review, I will post it. It might seem like tumbleweeds are blowing past, but I will be back in full force in time. Will you stick this out with me? I’m not committing to a number of posts per week, month or year. I will be here when I can. No more, no less.

Just stick with me. Things might just get interesting around here.



Bout of Books 18 | TBR & Progress

Bout of Books 18

Here are some goals for the Bout of Books 18.0 Readathon:

  • Read 5 books
  • Read a book by a ‘new to me’ author
  • Participate in at least one of the Daily Challenges
  • Find a new BookTuber to follow
  • Send a tweet to someone new every day

and here is my TBR pile:

Are you participating? If so, share your TBR!

Here is my Daily Progress:

Day One – Monday
Pages Read: 20
Books: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Day 1 #boutofbooks –> Introduce myself #insixwords . WOULD RATHER READ THAN BRUSH HAIR!

A photo posted by Sharlene Douglas-Huriwai (@sharlenesays) on

Day Two – Tuesday
Pages Read: 31
Books: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Day Three – Wednesday
Pages Read: 157
Books: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Day Four – Thursday
Pages Read: 100 (currently on page 364)
Currently Reading: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Day Five – Friday
Pages Read: 56
Books Finished: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Day Six – Saturday
Pages Read: 80 (21%)
Currently Reading: The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Day Seven – Sunday
Pages Read: 416 (22-100%)
Finished Reading: The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani

Final Comments?
I went hard on the last day to finish the second book. I felt that I didn’t commit a lot of time to reading. Next time I am going to start a day late, as Monday in New Zealand begins before the Readathon timezone and doing the daily challenges a day late was super confusing when it come to posting my progress. I only managed to complete one of the five goals above, but that leaves room for improvement next time.

So, with that, I’ll see you then!

2017 Blog Ambitions

Happy New Year!

I’ve thought about making so many changes to my blog but I know that in 5 months time, with a little one in my arms, I just won’t have the time or energy to make this blog my priority. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going anywhere. I will do my utmost to be here on the regular and keep up with the latest releases. So I thought it best to set myself some blogging goals, and share those. If someone else knows about them, then I have a better chance of sticking to them. I’m going with the KISS Rule & only setting 5. That’s right. That was a challenge limiting myself to 5, because there is so much I want to achieve and so very little time to do it in. How fast did the last 12 months go? Like it just disappeared!

Here are my hopes and dreams for SharleneSays in 2017:

1 | Post a review each month

2 | Start using some of my own photos

3 | Post monthly TBR & Wrapups

4 | Vlog on Bookish topics on SharleneSays on Youtube

5 | Smash out tasks for 101 Bookish Things in 1001 Days

If you’ve got some blogging aspirations, send me a link in the Comments section. I love checking out Bookish blogs.

That’s all for now folks. Have a safe and happy holidays. You’ll see me again very soon with a January TBR.

xoxo Sharlene

Bout of Books 18

Bout of Books 18

OMG! It’s the 31st and I just saw the sign up post. There are just 2 days to prepare, but I’ve GOT THIS! So many books on my shelves right now that I need to read. Time to get our read on! Like Kelly says, Go forth and sign up on the Bout of Books blog! I’ve never regretted it.

For those that don’t know what Bout of Books is… here is the official blurb:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 2nd and runs through Sunday, January 8th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 18 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

So what are you waiting for? JOIN US! No, really. Join us. You might just find your next BBF. Plus, it’s totally fun. AND WITH BOOKS! SQUEEE!

xoxo Sharlene