Reading challenge redux

Pop Sugar
Pop Sugar

When I wrote about Pop Sugar’s 2015 Reading Challenge here in December, I was excited for the inspiration the list gave me. But after the novelty wore off a bit, I set the printed list aside and just kept whittling away at my To Be Read pile–or Kindle queue, as the case may be! So I was surprised when I sat down with that list again in August to see just how many of the titles I’d read fit the list, and I’ve added a few more since then. Here’s my recap for 2015 as of the first November.

A book published this year:  Any number of them—I choose Whiskey and Charlie

A book written by someone under 30:  How’s 32? Jay Asher wrote 13 Reasons Why when he was 32. Actually, that’s when it was published, so maybe he did write it at 30!

A book with nonhuman characters: Lawyer for the Dog (a cute schnauzer) & Leaving Time (elephants)

A book with a number in the title: Second Sister

A funny book: Mrs. Queen Takes the Train

A book by a female author: Seriously?! Too many to count, but I’ll choose The Truth According to Us

A book set in a different country: The Miniaturist

A nonfiction book: A Million Miles in a Thousand Years

A book your mom loves: My mom loves Jan Karon’s Mitford series, so even though she hasn’t read the new one, I’ll choose Come Rain or Come Shine

A book based entirely on its cover: Book of Speculation

A memoir: Cider With Rosie

A book you can finish in a day: The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt

A book set somewhere you’ve always wanted to visit: Take Me With You

A book with a love triangle: Etta and Otto and Russell and James

A book set in the future: The Heart Goes Last

A book set in high school: Eleanor and Park

A book with a color in the title: A Spool of Blue Thread

A book that made you cry: Before I Go

A book with magic: The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster

A book by an author you’ve never read before: About forty bazillion of the books I read this year

A book that takes place in your home town: I fudged on this one—how about my home state? You Don’t Have To Live Like This was set in Detroit

A book that was originally written in another language: Little Paris Bookshop

A book set during Christmas: The Christmas Train by David Balducci (review to be posted)

So wowzers, right? There’s a number of other categories I probably just won’t get to because I’d rather read new books right now—so “A book more than 100 years old” will have to wait. There are a couple categories that intrigue me, though: A book that came out the year you were born (1958) and a book written by an author with your same initials (LL). Those sound like fun, but I’ll have to do some sleuthing for those two.

We’re only eight weeks away from the end of 2015–How did you do on your reading challenge this year?

A sweet lil’ reading challenge

When I browse online reading challenges, I’m usually underwhelmed by what I find at the linky parties: 30 posts in 30 days and I’m to write about my “favorite side character” (really?!); a mix-it-up challenge and I’m reading “medical thriller fiction” (what the-what the?!); or 52 books in 52 weeks? (I’ve got a life, here, folks!)  I have participated in the Goodreads Reading Challenge for the past two years because it’s flexible—I set my own goal, as few or as many books as I want—and that sliding bar on my Goodreads homepage is a nice nudge in the right reading challengedirection. But it’s all me. And kind of boring.

But Popsugar’s 2015 Reading Challenge (link) caught my eye, for some reason when it popped up on Pinterest. Odd because I’m not Popsugar’s demographic (18-40-year-old-women … ah, I don’t think so!), nor am I particularly interested in the hottest trends or any place “women’s passion points connect”, Popsugar’s tag line. And I have no idea what a “lifestyle brand” is. But there it was, “the ultimate reading challenge”–50 categories, all but winking at me on the screen.

There are some serious categories—book more than 100 years old, a banned book. Some light reading—a book you can finish in a day, a funny book. And some that will probably stretch my comfort level a bit—a book with nonhuman characters (Have I told you how much I hate talking rabbits?), a book that scares you. Popsugar reassures that even though they included 50 categories (or 52 with the trilogy), readers should pick and choose according to their reading tastes—which I will definitely do.

And if the categories aren’t that different from the million and one other reading challenges on the interwebs? Well, there’s something about a handy printable graphic to download (link) that caught my over-40 year-old, decidedly untrendy eye.

So there it is–printed, tucked in my Kindle cover, all 50 little checkboxes just waiting for me to add my tick marks.