Saturday, March 12, 2016

My 2016 Reading Challenge (updated to subtract what I've read this year)

For the fourth year in a row, I'm participating in the GoodReads reading challenge. I'm planning to read 75 books.

My list is a continuation of last year's, where, again, I set a goal of reading 75 books. I selected 75 books from the Rory Gilmore Book List, the BBC Book List, and the Read Harder Challenge.

This was very ambitious of me, because some of the books on my list were Very Heavy Going Indeed. I didn't manage to read the 75 titles from these extremely worthy lists--far from it--there were cozy mysteries that needed reading, too!

For this year, I retained all the books I hadn't read in 2015, so I'm like the U. S. Government--already in debt. I kept the leftovers and added new titles to suit the tasks of the 2016 Read Harder Challenge. Many of the books work for more than one part of the list, which frees up some books for me to pick.

From the Rory list:

1] Daughter of Fortune, Isabelle Allende
2] Eleanor Roosevelt, Vol 1, 1884-1933
3] I'm with the Band: Confessions of a Groupie
4] The Naked and the Dead, Norman Mailer
5] The Peace of Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition, Donald Kagan
6] Quattrocento
7] The Vanishing Newspaper: Saving Journalism in the Information Age
8] War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy

from the BBC list:

9] Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
10] The Time Traveler's Wife
11] The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
12] Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Louis de Bernières
13] The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood
14] Life of Pi
15] A Suitable Boy
16] The Shadow of the Wind
17] Love in the Time of Cholera, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
28] The Secret History, Donna Tartt
29] The Lovely Bones

The 2015 Read Harder Challenge:

30] SwitchFlipped (Read a book from an independent press)
32] Half-Breed (Read an author who is a member of an indigenous people)
33] Lays of Ancient Rome (Read collection of poems)
34] Imperial Spain, 1469-1716, J. H. Elliott (Read a book recommended by someone)
35] Go Ask Malice: A Slayer's Diary (Read a guilty pleasure)
36] The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck (Read a self-help book)

and 37 other titles to be determined, one of which will be

37] The Color Purple, Alice Walker

And now, to fill out my 75 titles, additions from the 2016 Read Harder Challenge. This is a draft of my early picks, selected because they're either already on my list, or are on the Rory Gilmore reading list:

Task 3: A collection of essays
38] A Bolt from the Blue and Other Essays, Mary McCarthy (Rory)

Task 4: read a book out loud to someone else

Task 7: Read a dystopian or post-apocalyptic novel
The Handmaid's Tale, Margaret Atwood (BBC booklist)

Task 8: Read a book originally published in the decade you were born
39] Howl and Other Poems by Allen Ginsberg (Rory)

Task 11: Read a book under 100 pages
40] The Year of Magical Thinking: A Play by Joan Didion (Rory)
The Art of War, Sun Tzu (Rory)
The Little Prince (BBC)

Task 13: Read a book that is set in the Middle East
41] Palace Walk: The Cairo Trilogy, Volume 1, Naguib Mahfouz

Task 14: Read a book by an author from Southeast Asia
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress, Dai Sijie (Rory)

Task 15: Read a book of historical fiction set before 1900
War and Peace (Rory)

Task 17: Read a non-superhero comic that debuted in the past three years
42] TBD

Task 19: Read a non-fiction book about feminism, or deals with feminist themes
43] Backlash, Susan Faludi (Rory)


The Second Sex, Simone de Beauvoir (Rory)

Task 20: Read a book about religion
44] The Gnostic Gospels, Elaine Pagels (Rory)

Task 23: Read a play
45] Henry IV Part I (Rory)

Task 24: Read a book about a character who has a mental illness
46] Girl, Interrupted (Rory)

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