2016

Okay, so I obviously love reading, but I also love learning about what new books are out there, and my want-to-read list is so huge at times that it’s overwhelming to choose what to read next, and I can waste a ton of time choosing the next book. Also I like checking things off lists. So, reading challenges provide some structure, ideas, get me thinking about books, and let me do that scavenger hunt check-it-off-the-list thing.

A to Z Reading Challenge
I’ll be reading one book for every letter in the alphabet; I’ve chosen titles. Once I’ve read one, I’ll strike it out and hopefully link to my thoughts on it.

23 / 26 completed

A – And the Birds Rained Down by Jocelyne Saucier
B – Bossypants by Tina Fey
C – Clay’s Ark by Octavia Butler
D – Dracula by Bram Stoker
E – Evicted by Matthew Desmond
F – Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
G – Girl Culture by Lauren Greenfield
H – How We Got to Now by Steven Johnson
I – I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
J – Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
K – Killing and Dying by Adrian Tomine
L – Lena Finkle’s Magic Barrel by Anya Ulinich
M – Mind of My Mind by Octavia Butler
N – Not My Turn to Die by Savo Heleta
O – Octopus Pie: Volume One by Meredith Gran
P – Perfume by Patrick Suskind
Q –
R – Red Rosa by Kate Evans
S – Summer Blonde by Adrian Tomine
T – The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace & Babbage by Sydney Padua
U – The Undertaking of Lily Chen by Danica Novgorodoff
V – Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman
W – Will & Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge
X –
Y – The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood
Z –

Seasonal Reading Challenge
This is a group on Goodreads and they have a huge, points-based challenge, with dozens of tasks. It’s huge and until I’m retired I can’t see actually completing a challenge. But that’s totally fine because it’s such a neat idea and a great resource for people interested in open reading challenges. My idea is to choose one category (like 15 point or 25 point challenges) and try to do all the tasks within my chosen category. Of course I’ll have to read some books (for book clubs, etc.) that don’t fit into that category but will still likely score me points, so I’ll be counting those too, because hey why not. I also reserve the right to swap out one task for another in a different category since my goal is, after all, to have fun and not be strict. So while I will try to keep it within a category, I’m choosing to hold that part more lightly–ultimately I’ll consider my goal satisfied if I have completed 10 tasks, no matter what category on the season’s challenge they come from. The Seasonal Reading Challenge has 4 sessions a year (one for every season), so I’ll be doing this a few times this year hopefully.

WINTER CHALLENGEtasks completed: 15 / 10

See the full list of all tasks for this challenge here.

15.1: “Read two books by authors with names that differ by exactly one letter”
The Curse by Karen Houppert and Blindsighted by Karin Slaughter
15.2: “Word for Word: Using this list Synonyms for the 96 most commonly used words in English read TWO books with synonyms in their titles or subtitles.”
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith and Harmful to Minors by Judith Levine
15.3: “Lost and Found: one book with LOSTFOUND in title&author or one with LOST one with FOUND”
The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage
15.4: multiple options – I read a book that is both sci-fi and third in its series
Clay’s Ark by Octavia Butler
15.5: “Using this random title generator, hit “Give Me Some Titles” once. Read a book with a word from one of the six titles generated in the title or subtitle”
Acid Dreams by Bruce Shlain and Martin Lee
15.6: “In Plein Air: Read a book with an outdoor scene on the cover”
And the Birds Rained Down by Jocelyn Saucier
15.7: “Here Be Dragons: Read a book with a dragon on the cover or with a storyline involving dragons.”
Tooth and Claw by Jo Walton
15.8: “Read a book from the list Popular epistolary novels”
Dracula by Bram Stoker
15.9: “Degas and the Dancers: Read a book that features dancers”
Entwined by Heather Dixon
15.10: “A Reason to Party: Read a book that is identified on Goodreads as #1, #2 or #12 in a series.”
Mind of My Mind by Octavia Butler

EXTRAS / PLUS
5.10: “read a book of your choice”
Red Rosa by Kate Evans

10.3: “read a book whose title/subtitle shares a word (4 or more letters long) with the title of one of Renoir’s paintings”
A Dangerous Woman: The Graphic Biography of Emma Goldman by Sharon Rudahl
10.10: “read a book with a number of pages that is evenly divisible by 4.”
Battlesaurus by Brian Falkner

20.9: “Read a book that is #1 in a series.”
My Soul to Keep by Tananarive Due
20.10: “Group Read”
The Professor and the Mad Man by Simon Winchester

25.6: “read a book whose author’s initials can be found in WHAT’Z IT WORTH” & “read a book that has the genre “Western” listed on its main page”
Angels Burning by Tawni O’Dell and Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman
25.10: “read a book with 17 letters in the book title or in the author’s name or in the two combined” & “read a book the title (title only, no subtitles) of which contains a word of at least 5 letters that is found in the lyrics of Hotel California”
Bossypants by Tina Fey and California by Edan Lepucki

30.1: “read a book with a word in the title that means give” & “read a book of your choice”
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson and The Vegetarian by Han Kang

SPRING CHALLENGEtasks completed: 14 / 10

See the full list of all tasks for this challenge here.

10.3: “read a book found on the first five pages of the Popular Surreal Books list”
Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
10.5: “read a book with a title/subtitle that contains a word of at least four letters that can also be found in the lyrics of ‘Take It Easy’ by The Eagles”
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
10.6: “read a book on the list of Literary Roles of Alan Rickman
Perfume by Patrick Suskind
10.8: “read a book with a main page genre of philosophy or science”
The Empathy Exams by Leslie Jamison
10.10: “read a book found on the 2016 Tournament of Books Longlist
Kitchens of the Great Midwest by Ryan Stradal

15.2: “read 2 books: a nonfiction book containing politics in the genre, and one in the dystopian genre”
Separate & Dominate by Christine Delphy and Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
15.4: “2 books: a) main page genre of science fiction or fantasy, b) author initials can be found in DOUGLAS ADAMS”
The Gigantic Beard that Was Evil by Stephen Collins and Evicted by Matthew Desmond
15.5: “read a book containing all letters of SPRING in title and subtitle”
Lena Finkle’s Magic Barrel by Anya Ulinich
15.6: “read a book with the word FIRE in the title/subtitle or with flames on the cover”
They Poured Fire on Us from the Sky by Benson Deng, Alephonsion Deng, and Benjamin Ajak
15.10: “read a book set at least 50% in a country from which MLB players hail”
Midwife of Venice by Roberta Rich

20.2: “read a book with a genre on its main page that contains history”
Not My Turn to Die by Savo Heleta
20.3: “read a book by an author new to you this challenge; you must have claimed one other task by this author before posting [10.3]”
Authority by Jeff VanderMeer
20.9: “read a book with the complete title in black or white”
Acceptance by Jeff VanderMeer
20.10: “Group Read”
The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

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