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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Reading Challenges 2017: Halfway There? (Or not)

I'm writing this on June 5, so this is my progress up to this point. So far the year has been absolutely packed with some great and some not-so-great reads and seriously crazy life stuff. Thankfully, I have awesome friends and family to back me up! Since I don't know when I'll get another chance, let's look at my progress thus far (and I will try not to cry over the ones I'm seriously behind on!)

In order:

  1. New to Me
  2. Pick Your Genre
  3. Pervy Girl
  4. Alphabet Soup
  5. Back to the Classics
  6. Banned and Challenged
  7. Dystopian Bingo
  8. Pop Sugar Ultimate
  9. You Read How Many Books?



I. New to Me

A) The Plan: Read 12 books that are from authors I have never read before, or the first in a series, before the 31st of December, including:

  • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
  • Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
  • Left Behind (Left Behind, #1) by Tim LaHaye, Jerry B. Jenkins
B) What I've read:
  1. No Medals Today by Shlomi Tal
  2. The Kingdom - Part One: The Runaway by Amir Or
  3. Instruments of the Angels (Hallows & Nephilim: Waters Dark and Deep #1) by Monica Leonelle
  4. Poems for Kids and Me by Jessie L Best
  5. Ariel Bradley, Spy for General Washington by Lynda Durrant
  6. Mama Bird Papa Bird by Wanda Obermeier
  7. Evil Ernie: Godeater by Justin Jordan
  8. The Five Fierce Tigers of Rosa Martinez by Burt Kempner
  9. Birds of a Feather: A Book of Idioms and Silly Pictures by Vanita Oelschlager
  10. The Adventure of Thomas the Turtle by Stuart Samuel
  11. Caleb and Kit by Beth Vrabel
  12. Thicker than Water (Murray of Letho, #10) by Lexie Conyngham
  13. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
  14. Finders Keepers by Russ Colchamiro
  15. Petals by Laurisa White Reyes
  16. The Bearded Prince by Rajesh Talwar
  17. Into The Air by AK Downing
  18. The Undelightened (The Undelightened, #1) by Bentz Deyo
  19. Strungballs by Mike Russell
  20. Scars (Time of Myths: Shapeshifter Sagas, #1) by Natasha Brown
  21. Whisper of Love (The Bradens at Peaceful Harbor, MD #5; The Bradens #21; Love in Bloom #36) by Melissa Foster
  22. The Prince Returns (The Keeper of Dragons, #1) by JA Culican
  23. Actual Malice by Breton Peace
  24. Laguna Dreams, Laguna Beach Book 5 by Kaira Rouda
  25. Big Bona Ogles, Boy! (Send for Octavius Guy, #3) by Michael Gallagher
  26. Zombies, Migrants, and Queers: Race and Crisis Capitalism in Pop Culture by Camilla Fojas
  27. Rosinanti (The Rosinanti Series Book 1) by Kevin J Kessler
  28. Christy by Catherine Marshall
  29. The A-Z of Stuff by David Fletcher
  30. Ziggy Popper at Large: 14 Tales of General Degeneracy, of Mayhem & Debauchery - For the Morally Conflicted & Borderline Criminal by Kirk Alex
  31. Majestic by Peter Parkin
  32. How to Be Happy: A Memoir of Love, Sex and Teenage Confusion by David Burton
  33. Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU by Cory Silverberg
  34. Death Unmasked by Rick Sulik
  35. Blood Divine by Greg Howard
  36. The Unquiet Bones (Hugh de Singleton, Surgeon Chronicles #1) by Mel Starr
  37. The Blue Hour by Isabelle Simler
  38. The Queen of the Frogs by Davide Cali
  39. Washed Away by Nikki DuBose 
  40. Shift (Mackenzie Grey #1) by Karina Espinosa
  41.  His Little Princess Wants It Hard and Unprotected by Amy Berg
C) Where do I go from here?
     Since I've totally blown 12 out of the water, I want to see how far I can get with new 
     authors and books! I'm also going to try and read those 3 I originally planned to read!


II. Pick Your Genre

A) The Plan: Read 12 books that fall within the horror genre before the 31st of December, including:

  • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
  • Sarah by Teri Polen
B) What I've read:
    1. Evil Ernie: Godeater by Justin Jordan
    2. Sarah by Teri Polen
    3. Chameleon by Zoe Kalo
    4. Blood Divine by Greg Howard

          C) Where do I go from here?
               Not quite where I want to be...yet. But I'm looking forward to picking up some spine-
               tingling horror later this year!

          III. Pervy Girl

          A) The Plan: Read 12 books that have some kind of kink in them, before the 31st of December, including:

          • 50 Shades of Gray by Alvin Schwartz

          B) What I've read:
          1. MIne by Andie M Long
          2. Ziggy Popper at Large: 14 Tales of General Degeneracy, of Mayhem & Debauchery - For the Morally Conflicted & Borderline Criminal by Kirk Alex
          3. His Little Princess Wants It Hard and Unprotected by Amy Berg

          C) Where do I go from here?
               So. I haven't been able to bring myself to read my intended book (mostly because it's a 
               seriously inaccurate representation of BDSM). I also haven't made much headway in 
               this challenge. I took on the challenge to push the boundaries of what I'm 
               *comfortable* with. A lot of it isn't that I'm too squeamish to read the books (that sure 
               as hell isn't it!) but that I'm still trying to get past the OMG MY FRIENDS WILL 
               KNOW part. I'm 30, I think by now I'm allowed to read whatever the hell I want 
               without embarrassment. Now I just have to convince myself!

          IV. Alphabet Soup

          A) The Plan: Read 26 books, one for each letter of the alphabet, before the 31st of December, including:

          • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
          • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
          • Christy by Catherine Marshall
          • The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
          • East of Eden by John Steinbeck
          • Fifty Shades of Gray by E L James
          • Gauntlet by Holly Jennings
          • The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
          • I Funny - A Middle School Story by James Patterson
          • Justice at Dachau by Joshua M. Greene
          • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
          • Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
          • Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
          • Night by Elie Wiesel
          • Overcoming Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts by Sally M. Winston; Martin N. Seif
          • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
          • The Queen of Frogs by Davide Cali, Marco Soma
          • Red Butterfly by A.L.Sonnichsen
          • The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy
          • Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
          • Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
          • Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
          • White Fang by Jack London
          • Xingu by Edith Wharton
          • Your Perfect Right 10th Edition by Robert Alberti; Michael L. Emmons
          • Zen for Druids by Joanna van der Hoeven

          B) What I've read:

          1. Christy by Catherine Marshall
          2. Gauntlet by Holly Jennings
          3. Justice at Dachau by Joshua M. Greene
          4. The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy
          5. Your Perfect Right 10th Edition by Robert Alberti; Michael L. Emmons
          6. Zen for Druids by Joanna van der Hoeven


          C) Where do I go from here?
                Six our of 24 isn't GREAT but I still have a little over six months to get through this, 
                and I think I'll be able to!

          V. Back to the Classics

          A) The Plan: Read 1 book from each category, before the 31st of December, including:

          • David Copperfield by Charles Dickens - 19th century classic
          • The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald - 20th century classic
          • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - female author
          • The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas - translated into English
          • The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer - published before 1800
          • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë - romance
          • The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo - gothic
          • Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut - # in title
          • White Fang by Jack London - animal
          • Peter and Wendy by J M Barrie - setting I'd like to visit
          • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - award
          • Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov - Russian

          B) What I've read:
               *insert sounds of crickets*

          C) Where do I go from here?
               Well...guess I know what my summer reading list looks like!

          VI. Banned and Challenged Books

          A) The Plan: Read 12 books that have been banned or challenged at some point by a major group, before the 31st of December, including:

          • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
          • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
          • The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
          • Fifty Shades of Gray by E L James
          • Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
          • The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
          • Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz
          • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
          • The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
          • Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
          • The Anarchist Cookbook by William Powell
          • The Call of the Wild by Jack London

          B) What I've read:
          1. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

          C) Where do I go from here?
               Well, still a lot of books to go, but I'm looking forward to reading them!

          VII. Dystopian Bingo

          A) The Plan: Read 12 books that are from the dystopian genre and gain at least 1 biingo, before the 31st of December, including:

          • Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - 2017 release

          B) What I've read:
          1. Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - 2017 release
          2. Savage Run by EJ Squires - Kick-ass rebel
          3. Into the Air by AK Downing - #SquadGoals 

          C) Where do I go from here?
               I absolutely LOVE the dystopian genre, and I'm a bit surprised that I haven't read 
               more yet this year.

          VIII. Pop Sugar

          A) The Plan: Read 1 book for each item on the list, before the 31st of December, including:

          • It by Stephen King - recommended by a librarian
          • The Scarlet Pimpnel by Emmuska Orczy - TBR list for way too long
          • Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson - first book in series haven't read before
          • Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - 2017 release
          • 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff - book of letters
          • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie - book by a person of color
          • The Winter's Tale by William Shakespeare - four seasons in the title
          • Left Behind (Left Behind, #1) by Tim LaHaye, Jerry B. Jenkins - audiobook
          • One Thousand and One Nights by Andrew Lang - story within a story
          • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1) by Stieg Larsson - espionage thriller
          • The Cat in the Hat by Dr Suess - cat on the cover
          • Thinner by Richard Bachman (aka Stephen King) - author who uses a pseudonym
          • All the Other Boys by Laura Rae Amos - bestseller from a genre you don't normally read
          • How to Be Sick: A Buddhist-Inspired Guide for the Chronically Ill and Their Caregivers by  Toni Bernhard - by or about a person who has a disability
          • Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert - involving travel
          • Starting an Etsy Business for Dummies by Kate Shoup, Allison Strine - career advice
          • Christy by Catherine Marshall - red spine
          • The Queen of the Frogs by Davide Cali - with pictures
          • The Shining by Stephen King - set in a hotel
          • Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson - first book in a series you haven't read before 
          • Aphrodite's Call (Pool of Souls Series Book 1) by Krystal Shannan - based on mythology
          • A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth - more than 800 pages
          • Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - published in 2017
          • Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs - read before that never fails to make you smile
          • Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain - about food
          • Watership Down by Richard Adam - nonhuman perspective
          • Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld - steampunk novel
          • Hatchet by Gary Paulsen - set in the wilderness
          • The Hobbit by J R R Tolkien - loved as a child
          • Le Petit Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry - author from a country you've never visited
          • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë - title that's a character's name
          • All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque - set during wartime
          • Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov - unreliable narrator
          • Wild Sees by Octavia Butler - main character is a different ethnicity than you
          • Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay - about an interesting woman
          • Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell - set in two different time periods
          • The Guns of August by Barbara W. Tuchman - month or day of the week in the title
          • To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf - written by someone you admire
          • Live by Night by Dennis Lehane - becoming a movie in 2017
          • Coraline by Neil Gaiman - set around a holiday other than Christmas
          • Merry Christmas, Alex Cross by James Patterson - bought on a trip (while visiting family)
          • Dominion by C J Sansom - recommended by an author you love (Stephen King)
          • A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman - NYT bestseller from 2016
          • The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride - family-member term in the title
          • David Copperfield by Charles Dickens - takes place over a character's life span
          • A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah - about an immigrant or refugee
          • The Journey to the West by Wu Cheng'en - genre/subgenre that you've never heard of (Shenmo  aka Gods and Demons fantasy)
          • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl - eccentric character
          • The Help by Kathryn Stockett - from a used book sale
          • Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys - mentioned in another book (Jane Eyre)
          • Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher - about a difficult topic

          B) What I've read:
          1. The Scarlet Pimpnel by Emmuska Orczy - TBR list for way too long
          2. Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - 2017 release
          3. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie - book by a person of color
          4. Christy by Catherine Marshall - red spine
          5. The Queen of the Frogs by Davide Cali - with pictures
          6. Gauntlet by Holly Jennings - published in 2017

          C) Where do I go from here?
               Not as far along as I would like, but not horrible either. I've been doing a ton of book 
               tours, but I need to start moderating that.

          IX. You Read How Many Books?!

          A) The Plan: Read at least 150 books before December 31st, 2017

          B) How many I've read so far: 89

          C) Where do I go from here?
               I'm over halfway there, and I have a LOT of books to go this year, so I don't think hitting 150 will be that big of a problem.

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