GoodReads Around the Year in 52 Books 2021

1. A book related to “In the Beginning…”: Tunkashila
2. A book by an author whose name doesn’t contain the letters A, T or Y: The Reluctant Assassin by Eoin Colfer
3. A book related to the lyrics for the song “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music: Girls Made of Snow and Glass
4. A book with a monochromatic cover: Medicine Walk
5. A book by an author on USA Today’s list of 100 Black Novelists You Should Read
6. A love story: The Prodigal
7. A book that fits a prompt suggestion that didn’t make the final list
8. A book set in a state, province, or country you have never visited: Bring Jade Home
9. A book you associate with a specific season or time of year
10. A book with a female villain or criminal: The Puffin of Death
11. A book to celebrate The Grand Egyptian Museum
12. A book eligible for the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation
13. A book written by an author of one of your best reads of 2020
14. A book set in a made-up place: The Lust Lizard Of Melancholy Cove
15. A book that features siblings as the main characters: The Sacrifice
16. A book with a building in the title: The House in the Cerulean Sea
17. A book with a Muslim character or author: The Olive Season
18. 3 books related to “Past, Present, Future” – Book 1: The Reluctant Assassin
19. 3 books related to “Past, Present, Future” – Book 2: The Lesson
20. 3 books related to “Past, Present, Future” – Book 3
21. A book whose title and author both contain the letter “u”: The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich
22. A book posted in one of the ATY Best Book of the Month threads
23. A cross genre novel:
24. A book about racism or race relations: This Is What America Looks Like
25. A book set on an island: Claire of the Sea Light
26. A short book (<210 pages) by a new-to-you author
27. A book with a character who can be found in a deck of cards
28. A book connected to ice
29. A book that you consider comfort reading
30. A long book
31. A book by an author whose career spanned more than 21 years: Aleph by Paulo Coelho
32. A book whose cover shows more than 2 people: My Two Moms
33. A collection of short stories, essays, or poetry
34. A book with a travel theme: Gullible’s Travels
35. A book set in a country on or below the Tropic of Cancer
36. A book with six or more words in the title: The Woman Who Died a Lot
37. A book from the Are You Well Read in World Literature list
38. A book related to a word given by a random word generator
39. A book involving an immigrant: The Buddha in the Attic
40. A book with flowers or greenery on the cover: The Olive Tree
41. A book by a new-to-you BIPOC author
42. A mystery or thriller: Gone Bamboo
43. A book with elements of magic: The Bear and the Nightingale
44. A book whose title contains a negative: We of the Never-Never
45. A book related to a codeword from the NATO Phonetic Alphabet: Secret Daughter (India)
46. A winner or nominee from the 2020 Goodreads Choice Awards: The Midnight Library
47. A non-fiction book other than biography, autobiography or memoir: What If?
48. A book that might cause someone to react “You read what?!?”
49. A book with an ensemble cast
50. A book published in 2021: The Immortal Boy
51. A book whose title refers to person(s) without giving their name: The Boy from Baby House 10
52. A book related to “the end”: Armageddon Summer

Published in: on January 16, 2021 at 5:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

2021 Book Riot Read Harder Challenge

Read a book you’ve been intimidated to read
Read a nonfiction book about anti-racism
Read a non-European novel in translation
Read an LGBTQ+ history book
Read a genre novel by an Indigenous, First Nations, or Native American author
Read a fanfic
Read a fat-positive romance
Read a romance by a trans or nonbinary author
Read a middle grade mystery
Read an SFF anthology edited by a person of color
Read a food memoir by an author of color: Eat a Peach
Read a work of investigative nonfiction by an author of color
Read a book with a cover you don’t like: Keeper of the Female Medicine Bundle
Read a realistic YA book not set in the U.S., UK, or Canada
Read a memoir by a Latinx author
Read an own voices book about disability
Read an own voices YA book with a Black main character that isn’t about Black pain
Read a book by/about a non-Western world leader
Read a historical fiction with a POC or LGBTQ+ protagonist
Read a book of nature poems
Read a children’s book that centers a disabled character but not their disability
Read a book set in the Midwest: My Two Moms
Read a book that demystifies a common mental illness
Read a book featuring a beloved pet where the pet doesn’t die: Bring Jade Home

Published in: on January 16, 2021 at 4:31 pm  Leave a Comment  

2021 Popsugar Reading Challenge

Another new year of reading! I’ve joined this challenge since 2018, so this is my fourth year participating.

Last year I wrote “Of all the challenges I participate in, this one really takes me out of my comfort zone, not to mention introduces me to some new genres and words” and seems like this continues to be true! I’ve never heard of Afrofuturist? And what is dark academia? And locked room mystery is definitely something I would read for the challenge.

REGULAR
1. A book that published in 2021: The Immortal Boy
2. An Afrofuturist book: The Lesson
3. A book that has a heart, diamond, club, or spade on the cover
4. A book by an author who shares your zodiac sign
5. A dark academia book
6. A book with a gem, mineral, or rock in the title: Bring Jade Home
7. A book where the main character works at your current or dream job
8. A book that has won the Women’s Prize for Fiction
9. A book with a family tree:
10. A bestseller from the 1990s
11. A book about forgetting: The Book of Lost Names
12. A book you have seen on someone’s bookshelf (in real life, on a Zoom call, in a TV show, etc.)
13. A locked-room mystery
14. A book set in a restaurant: The Apprentice
15. A book with a black-and-white cover
16. A book by an indigenous author: Medicine Walk
17. A book that has the same title as a song: Gone Bamboo
18. A book about a subject you are passionate about
19. A book that discusses body positivity
20. A book on a Black Lives Matter reading list
21. A genre hybrid: Keeper of the Female Medicine Bundle
22. A book set mostly or entirely outdoors: Row for Freedom
23. A book with something broken on the cover: The Woman Who Died a Lot
24. A book by a Muslim American / Muslim British author: This Is What America Looks Like
25. A book that was published anonymously
26. A book with an oxymoron in the title
27. A book about do-overs or fresh starts: My Maasai Life
28. A magical realism book
29. A book set in multiple countries: The Book of Lost Names
30. A book set somewhere you’d like to visit in 2021: A Van of One’s Own
31. A book by a blogger, vlogger, YouTube video creator, or other online personality: What If?
32. A book whose title starts with “Q,” “X,” or “Z”
33. A book featuring three generations (grandparent, parent, child): Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
34. A book about a social justice issue: My Two Moms
35. A book in a different format than what you normally read (audiobooks, ebooks, graphic novels)
36. A book that has fewer than 1,000 reviews on Amazon or Goodreads: Gullible’s Travels
37. A book you think your best friend would like: The Buddha in the Attic
38. A book about art or an artist: The Last Nude
39. A book everyone seems to have read but you
40. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

ADVANCED
41. The longest book (by pages) on your TBR list
42. The shortest book (by pages) on your TBR list
43. The book on your TBR list with the prettiest cover
44. The book on your TBR list with the ugliest cover
45. The book that’s been on your TBR list for the longest amount of time
46. A book from your TBR list you meant to read last year but didn’t
47. A book from your TBR list you associate with a favorite person, place, or thing
48. A book from your TBR list chosen at random
49. A DNF book from your TBR list
50. A free book from your TBR list (gifted, borrowed, library)

Published in: on January 16, 2021 at 12:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

Make Their Dreams Come True

Have you ever read about a character who has financial woes and you just so wish you can help them? Well, here’s your chance! Help them achieve their dreams, and imagine a better life for them!

I wonder if anybody else is reading memoirs today? A good one can be as much a pageturner as the best novels. For this readathon, one of the books I am reading is The International Bank of Bob by Bob Harris. The author travels around the world to find out how microloans are helping people in developing countries, which inspires this mini challenge.

Kiva.org is a nonprofit that links people in need with those who can help. When you visit the site, you can check out the borrower profiles and see who you would like to lend your money to: an artisan in Bali, a bookstore in Kenya, a coffee grower in Nicaragua…

For this challenge, you will help a book character write their story, in a few short paragraphs, about them and what they aspire to do with the loan. You can click on a few profiles on Kiva.org to get some idea how the profile looks like.

Here’s an example:

Liz is a high school senior in Indiana who lives with her grandparents and her brother. She has excellent grades in school and plays the clarinet as well as compose music. Liz is accepted into a prestigious college, and she hopes that Kiva loaners can help her with her education fees. She hopes to play in the orchestra in college and her dream is to become a doctor and cure her brother’s sickle cell disease. (You Should See Me in a Crown

Please post your loan profile, or a link to your reply, below. I will randomly select a winner for a Kiva gift card, so you can make a real life loan to help someone. You will need to provide me with an email for me to send the prize.

Published in: on October 20, 2020 at 10:42 pm  Comments (7)  

2020 Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge

This is the sixth year of the Read Harder Challenge and my fourth year participating.  This challenge really does help me “break out of your reading bubble and expand your worldview through books”.  This year’s challenge seems relatively easy, or rather, not too far from what I normally read. The only one that’s a little challenging is the play, which I won’t imagine picking up to read unless I’m in a class, lol. 

1. Read a YA nonfiction book – Tisha

2. Read a retelling of a classic of the canon, fairytale, or myth by an author of color – Revenge of the Mooncake Vixen

3. Read a mystery where the victim(s) is not a woman – The Fire Kimono

4. Read a graphic memoir – Dare to Disappoint

5. Read a book about a natural disaster – The Preservationist

6. Read a play by an author of color and/or queer author – Yellow Face

7. Read a historical fiction novel not set in WWII: A Mercy

8. Read an audiobook of poetry – Poetry of K.Y. Robinson

9 Read the LAST book in a series – Silvertongue

10. Read a book that takes place in a rural setting: Driving Over Lemons

11. Read a debut novel by a queer author: You Should See Me in a Crown

12. Read a memoir by someone from a religious tradition (or lack of religious tradition) that is not your own: The Betrayal

13. Read a food book about a cuisine you’ve never tried before: Gastronaut

14. Read a romance starring a single parent: Born to Bite

15. Read a book about climate change: South Pole Station

16. Read a doorstopper (over 500 pages) published after 1950, written by a woman: Midnight Sun

17. Read a sci-fi/fantasy novella (under 120 pages): The Artemis Fowl Files (includes two novellas)

18. Read a picture book with a human main character from a marginalized community: The Last Story of Mina Lee

19. Read a book by or about a refugee: I Shall Not Hate

20. Read a middle grade book that doesn’t take place in the U.S. or the UK: Lara’s Gift

21. Read a book with a main character or protagonist with a disability (fiction or non): Ghost Boy

22. Read a horror book published by an indie press: Slightly Spooky Stories

23. Read an edition of a literary magazine (digital or physical): Tiny Words

24. Read a book in any genre by a Native, First Nations, or Indigenous author: The Song the Owl God Sang

Published in: on January 13, 2020 at 3:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

2020 Ultimate Popsugar Challenge

My third year doing this challenge. Of all the challenges I participate in, this one really takes me out of my comfort zone, not to mention introduces me to some new genres and words, like bildungsroman. Of course I’ve read my fair share of “coming of age” stories but I didn’t know there’s a fancy word for that.

This is the first year I manage to complete the advance prompts as well! There are quite a few books in this list that I really enjoy, including the medical thriller which is totally out of my normal reading preference.  

Regular prompts

1. A book that’s published in 2020: The Henna Artist
2. A book by a trans or nonbinary author: Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars
3. A book with a great first line: Raspberries on the Yangtze
4. A book about a book club: The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
5. A book set in a city that has hosted the Olympics: The Fire Kimono
6. A bildungsroman: Graceling
7. The first book you touch on a shelf with your eyes closed: Ka Shin Fu
8. A book with an upside-down image on the cover: A Thousand Pieces of You
9. A book with a map: The Twentieth Wife
10. A book recommended by your favorite blog, vlog, podcast, or online book club: The Henna Artist
11. An anthology: Switch Bitch
12. A book that passes the Bechdel test: Frog Music
13. A book with the same title as a movie or TV show but is unrelated to it: Internment
14. A book by an author with flora or fauna in their name: Magyk
15. A book about or involving social media: The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success
16. A book that has a book on the cover: The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
17. A medical thriller: The Sisterhood
18. A book with a made-up language: The Artemis Fowl Files
19. A book set in a country beginning with “C”: A Long Petal of the Sea
20. A book you picked because the title caught your attention: The Solitude of Prime Numbers
21. A book published in the month of your birthday: Spinning Silver
22. A book about or by a woman in STEM: The Pull of the Stars
23. A book that won an award in 2019: The Grief Keeper
24. A book on a subject you know nothing about: The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success
25. A book with only words on the cover, no images or graphics: Eating Animals
26. A book with a pun in the title: Naturally Tan
27. A book featuring one of the seven deadly sins: Switch Bitch
28. A book with a robot, cyborg, or AI character: Clockwork Prince
29. A book with a bird on the cover: Dare to Disappoint
30. A fiction or nonfiction book about a world leader: In the Garden of Beasts
31. A book with “gold,” “silver,” or “bronze” in the title: McIlhenny’s Gold
32. A book by a WOC: A Mercy
33. A book with at least a four-star rating on Goodreads: Graceling
34. A book you meant to read in 2019: The Solitude of Prime Numbers
35. A book with a three-word title: Howl’s Moving Castle
36. A book with a pink cover: Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars
37. A Western: The Vengeance of Mothers
38. A book by or about a journalist: The Dressmaker of Khair Khana
39. Read a banned book during Banned Books Week: George
40. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading Challenge – A book that involves a bookstore or library (2018) – The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

2020 Challenge – Advanced prompts
1. A book written by an author in their 20s: Barnheart
2. A book with “20” or “twenty” in the title: The Twentieth Wife
3. A book with a character with a vision impairment or enhancement (a nod to 20/20 vision): Castle of Water
4. A book set in the 1920s: Tisha
5. A book set in Japan, host of the 2020 Olympics: The Samurai’s Tale
6. A book by an author who has written more than 20 books: Clockwork Prince
7. A book with more than 20 letters in its title: The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pim
8. A book published in the 20th century: Home Sick
9. A book from a series with more than 20 books: Tall, Dark & Hungry
10. A book with a main character in their 20s: Farewell to the East End
Published in: on January 13, 2020 at 2:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

Around the Year in 52 Books 2019

So, while chatting with fellow readers during a reading challenge, someone mentioned the ATY reading challenge. Naturally… I couldn’t resist finding out what it is about.  While we are already into October, reading the prompts I realize that a lot what I’ve read fit neatly in.  It is almost like emptying out a box of jigsaw puzzles and somehow the pieces fall in place to near completion.  If I knew about this challenge at the beginning of the year, I probably would have said that I’ve signed up for too many already. Now, however, I decide to just copy this down out of curiosity how much I’ve already done.

Dec 16: I just finished the Fruit of a Drunken Tree, thus completing this challenge. Turns out this challenge, the last to join, is the first to finish, due to its less restricting prompts.  So happy to complete it!

1. A book that was nominated for or won an award in a genre you enjoy – The Girl Who Drank the Moon (Newberry 2017)
2. A book with one of the 5 W’s in the title (Who, What, Where, When, Why) – The Dogs Who Found Me
3. A book where the author’s name contains A, T, and Y – The Samurai’s Garden (Gail Tsukiyama)
4. A book with a criminal character (i.e. assassin, pirate, thief, robber, scoundrel etc) – Malice at the Palace
5. A book by Shakespeare or inspired by Shakespeare – Uppity Women of Shakespearean Times
6. A book with a dual timeline – The Lake House
7. 2 books related to the same topic, genre, or theme: Book #1 – Body of Work
8. 2 books related to the same topic, genre, or theme: Book #2 – The Anatomist
9. A book from one of the top 5 money making genres (romance/erotica, crime/mystery, religious/inspirational, science fiction/fantasy or horror) – My Jane Austen Summer
10. A book featuring an historical figure – Nine Days a Queen
11. A book related to one of the 12 Zodiac Chinese Animals (title, cover, subject) – The Hare with Amber Eyes
12. A book about reading, books or an author/writer – Tolstoy and the Purple Chair
13. A book that is included on a New York Public Library Staff Picks list – With the Fire on High
14. A book with a title, subtitle or cover relating to an astronomical term – Walk Two Moons
15. A book by an author from a Mediterranean country or set in a Mediterranean country – Four Seasons in Rome
16. A book told from multiple perspectives – Stay With Me
17. A speculative fiction (i.e. fantasy, scifi, horror, dystopia) – Strangers
18. A book related to one of the elements on the periodic table of elements – Crucible of Gold 
19. A book by an author who has more than one book on your TBR – The Renegade Hunter
20. A book featuring indigenous people of a country – #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women
21. A book from one of the polarizing or close call votes: A book by an author from an island – The Farming of Bones
22. A book with a number in the title or on the cover – Ajax Penumbra 1969
23. 4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #1 Something Old – 1421
24. 4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #2 Something New – Brand New China
25. 4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #3 Something Borrowed – The Borrower
26. 4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #4 Something Blue –Alentejo Blue
27. A book off of the 1001 books to read before you die list – Fugitive Pieces 
28. A book related to something cold (i.e. theme, title, author, cover, etc.) – The Spy Who Came in From the Cold
29. A book published before 1950 – Just So Stories
30. A book featuring an elderly character – Unforgettable
31. A children’s classic you’ve never read – Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator
32. A book with more than 500 pages – Perdido Street Station
33. A book you have owned for at least a year, but have not read yet – Getting Stoned with Savages
34. A book with a person’s name in the title – Ajax Penumbra 1969
35. A psychological thriller – Strangers
36. A book featured on an NPR Best Books of the Year list – Sourdough
37. A book set in a school or university – The Golden Day
38. A book not written in traditional novel format (poetry, essay, epistolary, graphic novel, etc) – Milk and Honey
39. A book with a strong sense of place or where the author brings the location/setting to life – The Summer Book
40. A book you stumbled upon – The Realm of Shells
41. A book from the 2018 GR Choice Awards – Fruit of a Drunken Tree
42. A book with a monster or “monstrous” character – Perdido Street Station
43. A book related to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) [fiction or nonfiction] – Brilliant
44. A book related in some way to a tv show/series or movie you enjoyed (same topic, same era, book appeared in the show/movie, etc.) – The Art of Aardman
45. A multi-generational saga – The Years of Rice and Salt
46. A book with a (mostly) black cover – Blackfish City
47. A book related to food (i.e. title, cover, plot, etc.) – Banana
48. A book that was a finalist or winner for the National Book Award for any year – Challenger Deep
49. A book written by a Far East Asian author or set in a Far East Asian country – Ceres: Celestial Legend
50. A book that includes a journey (physical, health, or spiritual) – Tales of a Female Nomad
51. A book published in 2019 – House of Salt and Sorrows
52. A book with a weird or intriguing title – Island of the Sequined Love Nun

 

Published in: on October 2, 2019 at 1:13 pm  Leave a Comment  

Book Riot Read Harder 2019

My third year doing this challenge! I finished this with a few hours left in 2019. In fact, I had to hide in the bathroom at my friend’s New Year’s Party just to finish the last few pages of Sorcery and Cecelia on my phone!

1. An epistolary novel or collection of letters – Sorcery and Cecelia
2. An alternate history novel – The Years of Rice and Salt
3. A book by a woman and/or AOC (Author of Color) that won a literary award in 2018 – The Leavers
4. A humor book – Point Your Face at This
5. A book by a journalist or about journalism – And a Bottle of Rum
6. A book by an AOC set in or about space – How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe
7. An #ownvoices book set in Mexico or Central America – The Farming of Bones
8. An #ownvoices book set in Oceania – Unpolished Gem
9. A book published prior to January 1, 2019, with fewer than 100 reviews on Goodreads – A Cultivated Life (just 34 reviews!)
10. A translated book written by and/or translated by a woman – The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
11. A book of manga – Ceres: Celestial Legend
12. A book in which an animal or inanimate object is a point-of-view character – Firmin
13. A book by or about someone that identifies as neurodiverse – Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend
14. A cozy mystery – Malice at the Palace
15. A book of mythology or folklore – Baba Yaga Laid an Egg
16. An historical romance by an AOC – The Lost Daughter of Happiness
17. A business book- How Would You Move Mount Fuji?
18. A novel by a trans or nonbinary author – Blue Boy
19. A book of nonviolent true crime – The Orchid Thief
20. A book written in prison – De Profundis
21. A comic by an LGBTQIA creator – This One Summer
22. A children’s or middle grade book (not YA) that has won a diversity award since 2009 – Shooting Kabul
23. A self-published book – William the Last
24. A collection of poetry published since 2014 – Milk and Honey

Published in: on March 3, 2019 at 2:24 am  Leave a Comment  

Popsugar Reading Challenge 2019

This year there are a lot of fun categories. And I’ve added a few words to my vocab: I had no idea what is LitRPG or cli-fic.

1. A book becoming a movie in 2019 – Children of the Sea
2. A book that makes you nostalgic – Just So Stories
3. A book written by a musician (fiction or nonfiction) – Blue Boy
4. A book you think should be turned into a movie – The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two
5. A book with at least one million ratings on Goodreads – To Kill a Mockingbird
6. A book with a plant in the title or on the cover – Sister of My Heart
7. A reread of a favorite book – Goose Girl
8. A book about a hobby – Tolstoy and the Purple Chair
9. A book you meant to read in 2018 – Baba Yaga Laid an Egg
10. A book with POP, SUGAR, or CHALLENGE in the title – Challenger Deep
11. A book with an item of clothing or accessory on the cover – My French Whore
12. A book inspired by myth/legend/folklore – Baba Yaga Laid an Egg
13. A book published posthumously – Dalai Lama, My Son
14. A book you see someone reading on TV or in a movie – The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
15. A retelling of a classic – Hamlet
16. A book with a question in the title – How Would You Move Mount Fuji?
17. A book set on college or university campus – Body of Work
18. A book about someone with a superpower – Ceres
19. A book told from multiple POVs – Sister of My Heart
20. A book set in space – The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: Earth Edition
21. A book by two female authors – This One Summer
22. A book with SALTY, SWEET, BITTER, or SPICY in the title – The Years of Rice and Salt
23. A book set in Scandinavia – The Almost Nearly Perfect People
24. A book that takes place in a single day – Today Will Be Different
25. A debut novel – A Teaspoon of Earth and Sea
26. A book that’s published in 2019 – House of Salt and Sorrows
27. A book featuring an extinct or imaginary creature – Perdido Street Station
28. A book recommended by a celebrity you admire – The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
29. A book with LOVE in the title – Island of the Sequined Love Nun
30. A book featuring an amateur detective – Malice at the Palace
31. A book about a family – Green Island
32. A book author from Asia, Africa, or South America – The Gift of Rain
33. A book with a zodiac sign or astrology term in title – Paris to the Moon
34. A book that includes a wedding – Aya: Life in Yop City
35. A book by an author whose first and last names start with the same letter – Crucible of Gold (Naomi Novik)
36. A ghost story – Strangers
37. A book with a two-word title – Red Dust
38. A novel based on a true story – The Realm of Shells
39. A book revolving around a puzzle or game – The Pun Also Rises
40. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading challenge: A novel based on a real person – White Truffles in Winter

Advanced Reading
1. A “cli-fi” (climate fiction) book – Blackfish City
2. A “choose-your-own-adventure” book
3. An “own voices” book – #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women
4. Read a book during the season it is set in – Isaac’s Storm
5. A LitRPG book
6. A book from a genre/subgenre you’ve never heard of
7. A book with no chapters / unusual chapter headings / unconventionally numbered chapters – Book of a Thousand Days
8. Two books that share the same title – Dandelion Wine
9. A book that has inspired a common phrase or idiom
10. A book set in an abbey, cloister, monastery, vicarage, or convent – Women in Korean Zen

Published in: on January 11, 2019 at 12:30 am  Leave a Comment  

Book Riot Read Harder 2018 Challenge

I am happy that this year’s challenge is not as hung up on color and sexual-orientation like previous year’s. I am also doing Popsugar for the first year. Here is the Book Riot list. And I do spot a few items I like in their store so I definitely am going to complete this.

Well… I barely completed it in time. My last book is the Western. I am not a fan of cowboy and Indians, and I thought about reading a Western Romance, though that was barely more palatable. Then I noticed that I had a children’s book, Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie, which I figure fits the definition of western, with its pioneers, Native Americans and all that.

I was planning to read Green Island as my colonial read, the book starts as the end of Japanese occupation in Taiwan. Unfortunately I was 30 pages short of finishing it by the end’s year, and, scrolling through my read list, figured Brick Lane will likely qualify for the category.

One book that this challenge encouraged me to read is Cinder, which I likely won’t have picked up otherwise. I didn’t exactly love it, but it’s a really original story.

A book published posthumously – A Confederacy of Dunces
A book of true crime – Bones
A classic of genre fiction (i.e. mystery, sci fi/fantasy, romance) – Rebecca
A comic written and drawn by the same person – From Eroica with Love
A book set in or about one of the five BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, or South Africa) – Bones of the Master
A book about nature – In Bear Country
A western – Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie
A comic written or drawn by a person of color – Yakitate!! Japan
A book of colonial or postcolonial literature – Brick Lane
A romance novel by or about a person of color – When Dimple Met Rishi
A children’s classic published before 1980 – Pollyanna
A celebrity memoir – Siberian Dream
An Oprah Book Club selection – Wild
A book of social science – The Little Book of Hygge
A one-sitting book – Fortunately, the Milk
The first book in a new-to-you YA or middle grade series – Alcatraz Versus The Evil Librarians
A sci fi novel with a female protagonist by a female author – Cinder
A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC, or Image – Entangled Circumstances
A book of genre fiction in translation – Doctor Proctor’s Fart Powder
A book with a cover you hate – A Confederacy of Dunces
A mystery by a person of color or LGBTQ+ author – Raiser of Gales
An essay anthology – Yellow Woman and a Beauty of the Spirit
A book with a female protagonist over the age of 60 – Wise Women
An assigned book you hated (or never finished) – Moby Dick

Published in: on April 11, 2018 at 4:21 pm  Leave a Comment  

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge

My friends on BookCrossing led me to a new challenge, Popsugar Reading Challenge. Last year’s 666 was fun, but it was rather hard to find books from Oceania and South America, and I ended up reading a few books that I just read because I have to. I do not feel like doing it again so soon. Meanwhile, the Book Riot one which I have been participating every year, seems to get too hung up on color and sexual orientation. A new challenge is therefore most welcome.

Finished this in time. Though not the Advanced ones. I was too busy studying for the exam in November, and work didn’t help with a few people short in our dept… a management team of 5 left with only one… me.

Look forward to the 2019 challenge.

PopSugar Reading Challenge

1. A book made into a movie you’ve already seen – We Bought a Zoo
2. True Crime – Bones
3. The next book in a series you started – The Twelve Clues of Christmas
4. A book involving a heist – Artemis
5. Nordic noir – Mind’s Eye
6. A novel based on a real person – Come August, Come Freedom
7. A book set in a country that fascinates you – The Sweet Life in Paris
8. A book with a time of day in the title – The 6:41 to Paris
9. A book about a villain or antihero – Wickedly Charming
10. A book about death or grief – The Murderess
11. A book with a female author who uses a male pseudonym – The Outsiders
12. A book with an LGBTQ+ protagonist – Being Jazz
13. A book that is also a stage play or musical – The Grapes of Wrath
14. A book by an author of a different ethnicity than you – Lakota Woman
15. A book about feminism – The Help
16. A book about mental health – Truth & Beauty
17. A book you borrowed or that was given to you as a gift – When
18. A book by two authors – The Scalpel and the Silver Bear
19. A book about or involving a sport – Wild
20. A book by a local author – Swamplandia!
21. A book with your favorite color in the title – Lavender Blue and the Faeries of Galtee Wood
22. A book with alliteration in the title – Wine and War
23. A book about time travel – Flight
24. A book with a weather element in the title – The Summer They Came
25. A book set at sea – The Story of a Shipwrecked Sailor
26. A book with an animal in the title – In Bear Country
27. A book set on a different planet – Ray Bradbury Chronicles #1
28. A book with song lyrics in the title – The River
29. A book about or set on Halloween – Pumpkin Pumpkin
30. A book with characters who are twins – A Quick Bite
31. A book mentioned in another book – Truth & Beauty
32. A book from a celebrity book club – Little Fires Everywhere
33. A childhood classic you’ve never read – Call of the Wild
34. A book that’s published in 2018 – We Fed an Island
35. A past Goodreads Choice Awards winner – Before We Were Yours
36. A book set in the decade you were born – The Outsiders
37. A book you meant to read in 2017 but didn’t get to – Stories From The Vinyl Cafe
38. A book with an ugly cover – A Confederacy of Dunces
39. A book that involves a bookstore or library – Mr Penumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore
40. Your favorite prompt from the 2015, 2016, or 2017 POPSUGAR Reading Challenges: A book that has been on your TBR List for way too long – Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

2018 Popsugar Advanced Reading Challenge

1. A bestseller from the year you graduated high school – Hatchet
2. A cyberpunk book – Cinder
3. A book that was being read by a stranger in a public place
4. A book tied to your ancestry – Fried Eggs with Chopsticks
5. A book with a fruit or vegetable in the title – The Grapes of Wrath
6. An allegory – Call of the Wild
7. A book by an author with the same first or last name as you
8. A microhistory – To Cork or Not To Cork
9. A book about a problem facing society today – The Devil’s Highway
10. A book recommended by someone else taking the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge – Artemis

Published in: on April 11, 2018 at 4:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

666 Challenge (2017)

I am not sure where this challenge originated in, but I found it on BookCrossing 666 Challenge.

Here are the rules:

You aim to read 6 books which are set in OR are written by an author from 6 different countries in each of the 6 continents within 2017.  You cannot count books of the same country twice and you cannot count one book for more than one country.

This sounds fun, and as I enjoy reading books from different parts of the world, this challenge is manageable, nudging me a slightly beyond my comfort zone.

AFRICA:

KENYA – Facing the Lion by Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton
ALGERIA – The Attack by Yasmina Khadra (story set in Israel but author from Algeria)
TOGO – An African in Greenland by Tete-Michel Kpomassie
IVORY COAST – Aya of Yop City by Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie
THE GAMBIA – Swing Time by Zadie Smith
ANGOLA – Nzingha: Warrior Queen by Patricia McKissack

EUROPE:

ITALY – Silk by Alessandro Baricco
U.K. – Case Histories by Kate Atkinson
GREECE – The Summer of My Greek Taverna by Tom Stone
FRANCE – The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
SWITZERLAND – Blue Pills by Frederik Peeters
SWEDEN – The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

ASIA:

INDIA – The Empire of Tea by Alan MacFarlane & Iris MacFarlane
ISRAEL – Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari
JAPAN – With the Light by Keiko Tobe
NEPAL – Peak by Roland Smith
CHINA – From Point to Point by Xu Bing
VIETNAM – Silence by Thich Nhat Hanh

NORTH AMERICA (INCL. CENTRAL AMERICA & THE CARIBBEAN):

USA – Still Alice by Lisa Genova
CANADA – Paddle to the Arctic by Don Starkell
MEXICO –  The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
ANTIGUA – Lucy by Jamaica Kincaid
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

PACIFICA (INCL. ANTARCTICA):

NEW ZEALAND – The Wives of Henry Oades by Johanna Moran
PAPUA NEW GUINEA – Islands in the Clouds by Isabella Tree
AUSTRALIA – The Road From Coorain by Jill Ker Conway
HAWAII – Fluke by Christopher Moore
TAHITI – All Good Things by Sarah Turnbull

SOUTH AMERICA:

ARGENTINA – The Aleph by Jorge Luis Borges
VENEZUELA – Indulgence: One Man’s Selfless Search for the Best Chocolate in the World by Paul Richardson
CHILE – Zorro by Isabel Allende
COLOMBIA – One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
BRAZIL – The Zahir by Paulo Coelho
PERU – What Really Happened in Peru by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan

Published in: on June 4, 2017 at 6:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Book Riot’s 2017 Read Harder Challenge

  1. Read a book about sports – Gothic Sports vol 1-2
  2. Read a debut novel – The Girl Who Fell from the Sky
  3. Read a book about books – The First Among Sequels
  4. Read a book set in Central or South America, written by a Central or South American author.– One Hundred Years of Solitude
  5. Read a book by an immigrant or with a central immigration narrative. – Goodbye, Vietnam
  6. Read an all-ages comic – Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier
  7. Read a book published between 1900 and 1950 – Bread Givers
  8. Read a travel memoir – Paddle to the Arctic
  9. Read a book you’ve read before – Something Rotten
  10. Read a book that is set within 100 miles of your location – How Sweet It Is!
  11. Read a book that is set more than 5000 miles from your location – The Summer of My Greek Taverna
  12. Read a fantasy novel – City of Lost Souls
  13. Read a nonfiction book about technology – The Emperor of All Maladies
  14. Read a book about war – All the Light We Cannot See
  15. Read a YA or middle grade novel by an author who identifies as LGBTQ+ – Boy Meets Boy
  16. Read a book that has been banned or frequently challenged in your country. The Book of Bunny Suicides
  17. Read a classic by an author of color. – The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea
  18. Read a superhero comic with a female lead. – Bound Beauty
  19. Read a book in which a character of color goes on a spiritual journey – The Conch Bearer
  20. Read an LGBTQ+ romance novel – Trans-Sister Radio
  21. Read a book published by a micropress – Hot Donut Salad
  22. Read a collection of stories by a woman – Pilgrims
  23. Read a collection of poetry in translation on a theme other than love.
  24. Read a book wherein all point-of-view characters are people of color – The Golden Son

Reading the list, it feels like whoever makes the list are a bit obsessed with the color of the skin and sexual orientation.  I personally read all types of books, and being non-white I read plenty of non-white books anyway, but I don’t like the list is putting emphasis on the skin color of the author, when a well written book is a well written book.

Also, growing up, I have to say I didn’t consider myself as a “person of color.”
I am yellow, there are whites, and blacks, and browns, but white is a color too, isn’t it? Just a different spot on the spectrum of color. They most certainly are not colorless people. Using the term is so divisive, there is “white” and the rest of the world that do not qualify as “white”. It is white supremacy!

For the banned book, I didn’t realize that the banned book list is so extensive in the U.S., that in fact an average reader will actually have to make an effort not to read any. However, I found that The Bunny Suicides book was on one of the lists. A bit of googling told me that a mom in Oregon hated this book so much, she tried to get it banned from his son’s school, and planned to burn the book rather than returning it to the school. The school board said they would then be forced to spend money to buy a new copy to review it, and would have to bill the parent, as well as banning her son from future loans as he failed to return titles he checked out.

I also found out that in China they banned the book, because a few students attempted suicide. Now, the students didn’t try to kill rabbits after reading the book, and they suicided by jumping into the river or taking sleeping pills, not copy-catting any of the unusual ways depicted in the book. It’s a sad fact that students in Asia do get a lot of pressure to perform well in school, and news of suicide is sadly not uncommon. However, I do find the bunnies quite innocent. Therefore, of all the banned books I read, I decide to pick the Bunnies Suicide for my banned book title.

Published in: on January 10, 2017 at 10:23 pm  Leave a Comment