Reading Challenges

All over the internet I’ve been finding different reading challenges, from classics to science fiction to 100 books in a year. This made me want to try one, since I haven’t done it before. However, instead of taking a challenge someone else thought up that I may get sick of, I’m going to make up my own. If you have any suggestions for future challenges, please feel free to suggest them!


2016 Reading Challenge (5/40)
Time: January to December 2016

I found a reading challenge on Pinterest (love!) that I think will be a good one to attempt this year. I’ve already finished several books, so hopefully I stop spending so much time playing video games and watching TV shows and more time reading and completing this (insanely long) challenge! I failed miserably last year completing the challenge variety, so hopefully this time I will branch out!

  1. A book based on a fairy tale
  2. A National Book Award winer
  3. A young adult bestseller: Twilight (Twilight Saga #1) by Stephenie Meyer
  4. A book you haven’t read since high school
  5. A book set in your home state
  6. A book translated to English
  7. A romance set in the future
  8. A book set in Europe
  9. A book that’s under 150 pages: Hatchet (Brian’s Saga #1) by Gary Paulsen**
  10. A New York Times bestseller
  11. A book that’s becoming a movie this year
  12. A book recommended by someone you just met
  13. A self-improvement book
  14. A book you can finish in a day: Brian’s Winter (Brian’s Saga #3) by Gary Paulsen**
  15. A book written by a celebrity
  16. A political memoir
  17. A book at least 100 years older than you
  18. A book that’s more than 600 pages
  19. A book from Oprah’s Book Club
  20. A science fiction novel
  21. A book recommended by a family member
  22. A graphic novel
  23. A book published in 2016
  24. A book with a protagonist who has your occupation
  25. A book that takes place during summer: Hatchet (Brian’s Saga #1) by Gary Paulsen**
  26. A book and its prequel
  27. A murder mystery
  28. A book written by a comedian
  29. A dystopian novel
  30. A book with a blue cover: Brian’s Winter (Brian’s Saga #3) by Gary Paulsen**
  31. A book of poetry
  32. The first book you see in a bookstore
  33. A classic from the 20th century: Hatchet (Brian’s Saga #1) by Gary Paulsen**
  34. A book from the library
  35. An autobiography
  36. A book about a road trip
  37. A book about a culture you’re unfamiliar with
  38. A satirical book
  39. A book that takes place on an island
  40. A book that’s guaranteed to bring you joy


Goodreads 2016 Challenge (2/16)
Time: January to December 2016

2016 Reading Challenge

2016 Reading Challenge
Bailey has
read 2 books toward her goal of 16 books.

(All books I’ve read will have two asterisks ** after them, as well as a link to my review. All books I’m in the process of finishing will have one asterisk * after them.)


Epic Years Challenge (0/7)
No deadline

This challenge will consist of me reading several epic classics before I die. There isn’t a real time deadline with this, which I like, especially since I hate long, boring books. But, I want to try! I will start with a few, and if I feel I should add more as I go, I will.

  1. imageMoby-Dick by Herman Melville (635 pages)
  2. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (1,225 pages)
  3. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas (928 pages)
  4. Ulysses by James Joyce (approx. 700 pages)
  5. The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo (536 pages)
  6. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand (1,168 pages)
  7. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand (720 pages)


A Month of Harry Potter Challenge (0/7)
One month whenever

I love Harry Potter. J.K. Rowling, in my opinion, is a genius coming up with this series. And so, I decided to make this a challenge. I’ve done it before (in one week on a bet of pizza and pop), but this time, the goal is do read all seven in one month, and watch the movies (I always have to watch the book’s movie after). If you want to join me, please do! I would love hearing about your adventures with HP alongside mine.

  1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter series #1)
  2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter series #2)
  3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter series #3)
  4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter series #4)
  5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter series #5)
  6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter series #6)
  7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter series #7)


Jane Austen Book Club of One Challenge (0/6)
One year whenever

In 2013, I finally got all six copies of Jane Austen’s novels. I haven’t read them all, and this challenge is to ensure that I do. This challenge will consist of me finishing all six books by the end of a year of my choosing. Afterward, I will probably be spending time eating ice cream, drinking and watching Game of Thrones.

  1. Pride and Prejudice
  2. Sense and Sensibility
  3. Mansfield Park
  4. Emma
  5. Persuasion
  6. Northanger Abbey


Sci-Fi Section Challenge (3/20)
No deadline

I’m not a big science fiction reader, so I decided to make a challenge focused on that. This one won’t have a deadline, as there are so many science fiction books out there, setting one would be difficult. So, my goal for this is to just read more sci-fi! I enjoy sci-fi movies, and plan to watch the movies for some afterward. And, if you have any suggestions, please let me know!

  1. Never Let Me GoFoundation (Foundation series #1) by Isaac Asimov
  2. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  3. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  4. World War Z by Max Brooks**
  5. A Princess of Mars (Barsoom #1) by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  6. Sphere by Michael Crichton
  7. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (and other short stories) by Philip K. Dick
  8. Mila 2.0 by Debra Driza
  9. Dust by Hugh Howey
  10. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  11. The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin
  12. Omnifix by Scott Mackay
  13. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
  14. 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
  15. Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
  16. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  17. Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
  18. The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells
  19. Leviathan by Scott Westerfield
  20. Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson
  21. Dark Eden (Dark Eden #1) by Chris Beckett**


Iowa’s Pulitzers Challenge (0/9)
One year whenever

As many of you probably know, I graduated from University of Iowa, where the reputable Iowa Writers’ Workshop is located. I basically grew up there reading anything and everything by authors with some affiliation to the workshop. So, I decided to make a challenge based on this fact. During one year of my choosing, I will read all Pulitzer Prize-winning fiction novels written by graduates or faculty of Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

  1. TinkersAll the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren (winner 1947)
  2. Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner (winner 1972)
  3. Elbow Room by James Allan McPherson (winner 1977)
  4. The Stories of John Cheever by John Cheever (winner 1979)
  5. A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley (winner 1992)
  6. American Pastoral by Philip Roth (winner 1998)
  7. The Hours by Michael Cunningham (winner 1999)
  8. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson (winner 2005)
  9. Tinkers by Paul Harding (winner 2010)


Alphabet Soup, Title, Challenge (1/27)
No deadline

I decided I needed a challenge dedicated to 2015 and 2016. And, what better way than to read the alphabet (and one number)! My goal is to read one book every few weeks, or lots of books at the end of the year, as is my normal process, and post reviews. Most of these will be books I already have, or randomly chosen ones, but if a new one comes out between now and when I start, or in the middle of, the challenge I’ll update.

  1. imageAtonement by Ian McEwan
  2. The Blessing Stone by Barbara Wood**
  3. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
  4. Dracula by Bram Stoker
  5. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
  6. Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
  7. The Glass of Time by Michael Cox
  8. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
  9. I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
  10. The Joy Luck Club
  11. Keeping Faith by Jodi Picoult
  12. Lady Audley’s Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon
  13. The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman
  14. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
  15. Outer Dark by Cormac McCarthey
  16. Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce
  17. The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
  18. The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro
  19. Stardust by Neil Gaiman
  20. Tenth of December by George Saunders
  21. Under the Dome by Stephen King
  22. Velocity by Dean Koontz
  23. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green
  24. X
  25. The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood
  26. Zero Hour by Clive Cussler
  27. 1984 by George Orwell


Alphabet Soup, Author, Challenge (1/26)
No deadline

This is a continuation of the previous challenge, but looking at reading different authors instead of just focusing on titles. Finding authors you like is difficult, and branching out is important, so that is what this challenge is about (this one has no number).

  1. imageAtwood, Margaret: The Handmaid’s Tale
  2. Bray, Libba: A Great and Terrible Beauty**
  3. Connelly, Michael: The Lincoln Lawyer
  4. Duncan, Glen: The Last Werewolf
  5. Eggers, Dave: A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
  6. Fitzgerald, F. Scott: The Great Gatsby
  7. Gudenkauf, Heather: Little Mercies
  8. Hemingway, Ernest: For Whom the Bell Tolls
  9. Ivey, Eowyn: The Snow Child
  10. Johansen, Erika: The Invasion of the Tearling
  11. Kubica, Mary: The Good Girl
  12. Lowry, Lois: The Giver
  13. Morrison, Toni: The Bluest Eye
  14. Orwell, George: Animal Farm
  15. Paulsen, Gary: The Transall Saga
  16. Rand, Ayn: Atlas Shrugged
  17. Salinger, J.D.: The Catcher in the Rye
  18. Tartt, Donna: The Goldfinch
  19. Verne, Jules: Journey to the Center of the Earth
  20. Wilde, Oscar: The Picture of Dorian Gray
  21. Yousafzai, Malala: I Am Malala


Banned Books Challenge (0/9)
No deadline

After reading a Buzzfeed article on things about J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, I decided my banned book library is a bit small. Time to catch up on history’s best novels!

  1. Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
  2. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  3. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  4. A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck
  5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  6. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  7. 1984 by George Orwell
  8. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
  9. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

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