Monthly Challenge Updates- March 2018

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For the month of March, I managed to complete only 5 books. Once upon a time, that would have been amazing for me but 2018 started out strong so I was hoping for a slightly larger number. To be fair, I am in the last quarter of The Wife Between Us (Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen) but doubted I would get it done before April 1st (since I am working the next few days).

Even though I am kind of disappointed by my reading accomplishments this month (especially in comparison to last), in the very least I can say the covers of the books I did read this month were gorgeous. Anyone else notice that it was a very blue month for me? Very odd how things work out that way sometimes.

General Updates

Books Started this Month: 6

Books Completed this Month: 5

Reviews: 3

 

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Book of the Month choices (and link):

Not That I Could Tell by Jessica Strawser

Other People’s Houses by Abbi Waxman

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Challenges

Beat the Back List

  • Wonder Woman by Leigh Bardugo

 

POPSUGAR

A book that is published in 2018

  • Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

 

A book from a celebrity book club

  • An American Marriage by Tayari Jones (Oprah’s book club choice 2018)

 

Book Riot Read Harder

 

 

This is the point of time during the year where my interest and attention towards reading challenges dwindles down to practically nothing. I am reading, but it is more about what looks appealing and what is readily available as opposed to consciously selecting something I know fills in parts of my lists. Again, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but just a little insight as to why my prompts are a bit empty this month.

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April TBR

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Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Not That I Could Tell by Jessica Strawser

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

  • POPSUGAR- A book with a time of day in the title

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowan

  • POPSUGAR- A book with characters who are twins
  • Beat the Back List

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

  • Beat the Back List

American Panda by Gloria Chao

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

  • Beat the Back List

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi

 

I decided to take the Orangutan Librarian’s advice and cut my TBR down to a much more realistic number, while also choosing titles I really want to get to in the next month. Obviously I hope to read more than this list, but I am at least going to try to start here first. I only have three new releases on this list as of right now, which again pushes me to work harder on my Back List. As the months move forward, the rules for “Back Listed books” gets blurrier. What originally started as books that I owned with publication dates prior to 2018, now tries to include general TBR books that I may have borrowed from the library (still before 2018). What do you guys think? Should I include all books before 2018 or just ones that I own? How was March for everyone else? Have you read any of the books I’ve mentioned in this post? Let’s chat!

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Monthly Challenge Updates- February 2018

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Another month, come and gone already! I know February is the shortest month but I feel like it was extra short this year. I will say though, I am fairly pleased with my reading though, it was my best so far (I think)! Unfortunately, I did NOT do much damage to any of my reading challenges, something I am going to try my very hardest to focus on next month. Wicked Deep (by Shea Ernshaw) is being released in March, and it was my most anticipated book of the year, so I expect to get to that right away. Otherwise, I hope to knock out as many of my physical books (that I own) as I can. This month, I focused pretty heavily on Graphic Novels. My brother Thomas is a cartoonist, and had many suggestions for me, and I got a little side tracked. Actually, I am trying to finish up the last few graphic novels he got me, so that I can start March off fresh with either An American Marriage or another book that has been sitting on my desk.

General Updates

Books Started this Month: 13

Books Completed this Month: 12

Reviews: 3

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Book of the Month choices (and link)

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

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Challenges

Beat the Back List

Gunslinger Girl by Lyndsay Ely*

 

POPSUGAR

A book with alliteration in the title

  • Gunslinger Girl by Lindsay Ely

 

Book Riot Read Harder

A comic written or illustrated by a person of color

  • Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC or Image

  • The Babysitter’s Club by Raina Telgemeier (books 1-4), Gale Gallagan (book 5), based on the series written by Ann M. Martin

A western

  • Gunslinger Girl by Lindsay Ely

 

I have stated in the past that my main focus for the year is not on my reading challenges, but my Back List. The reading challenges are mostly to give me ideas (for when their are slumps) and an easier way for me to see what kinds of books I am reading throughout the year. Sadly, my Back List has taken the least amount of damage thus far, and it truly undermines my reading. I mean, I am literally 11 books ahead of schedule on my Goodreads challenge (I set it for 50), but it doesn’t feel like I have made a reasonable dent yet, because I haven’t touched my Back List books. Fingers crossed that I can stay on track for March.

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March TBR

These are the books (and their challenge prompts) that I hope to get to in the month of March.

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

  • POPSUGAR- A book with an animal in the title
  • Book Riot- A book set in or about one of the five BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China or South America)
  • Beat the Back List

Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo

  • Beat the Back List

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

  • POPSUGAR- A book with a time of day in the title

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

  • POPSUGAR- A book with characters who are twins
  • Beat the Back List

Red Clocks by Leni Zumas

  • POPSUGAR- A book about feminism

The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

  • POPSUGAR- A book by two authors

Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney

  • Beat the Back List
  • POPSUGAR- A book by a local author

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

  • Beat the Back List

Camino Island by John Grisham

  • Beat the Back List
  • POPSUAGR- A book that involves a bookstore or library

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

  • POPSUGAR- A book that is published in 2018

A Man Called Ove

  • Beat the Back List

 

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How did everyone else do this month? What was your favorite read? Are any of these books on your March TBR? Let’s chat!

Monthly Challenge Updates- January

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Hey guys! Since I am participating (or trying to) in a few different reading challenges this year, I thought it would be helpful (mostly for me) to do a monthly update. I will use these updates to highlight what I’ve read over the month, which prompts I am hoping to tackle, and any that I may have gotten to thus far. Basically this is a monthly wrap-up.

General updates

Books started this month: 9

Books completed this month: 6

Reviews?: 4

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BOTM choices (and link):

Red Clocks by Leni Zumas

As Bright as Heaven by Susan Meissner

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Challenges

Beat the Back list

Popsugar

  • The next book in a series you started
    • The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (book #2) (mini review)
  • A book that was borrowed or that was given as a gift
    • Warcross by Marie Lu (library book) (feature)
  • A book about death or grief

BookRiot: Read Harder

  • A one-sitting book

I will reiterate that I have no plans to actually complete any of these challenges this year. Looking at these prompts, I know for a fact some of them I am absolutely uninterested in. However, some have made me excited for new books that weren’t on my radar (just what I need!). This is more or less so I can keep track of the things I am doing throughout the month. I will say that I want to work the hardest on my Beat the Back List though. And while I am organizing and keeping track of those books, I might as well tick off any challenge prompts I complete along the way, right?

I also want to try to pick up my Kindle books more going forward. Perhaps in between physical books? I need to start making a dent in my ARCs now that I have finally been approved for some!

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February TBR

These are the prompts that I can (potentially) fill this month, with back listed books that I own.

Popsugar

  • A book made into a movie you’ve already seen
    • The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero & Tom Bissell
    • A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron
  • A book with a time of day in the title
    • Batman: The Nightwalker
  • A book about time travel
    • 11/22/63 by Stephen King
  • A book with an animal in the title
    • The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
    • A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron
  • A book with characters who are twins
    • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • A book that is also a stage play or musical
    • Wicked by Gregory Maguire
  • A book about feminism
    • Red Clocks by Leni Zumas*
  • A book about mental health
    • One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
  • A book by two authors
    • The Wife Between Us by Sarah Pekkanen & Greer Hendricks*
  • A book by a local author
    • Watching Glass Shatter by James J. Cudney
  • A book from a celebrity book club
    • Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman (Reese Witherspoon)
    • Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (Reese Witherspoon)
  • A childhood classic you’ve never read
    • The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
    • Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
  • A book that’s published in 2018
    • The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw*
    • Gunslinger Girl by Lyndsay Ely*
  • A past Goodreads Choice winner
    • All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood
  • A book you wanted to read in 2017 but didn’t get to
    • my whole backlist?
  • Your favorite prompt from 2015, 2016 or 2017 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge
    • (from the 2017 list) A book of letters- Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

 

BookRiot Read Harder

  • A book set in or about one of the five BRICS countries
    • Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
  • A western
    • Gunslinger Girl by Lyndsay Ely*
  • A comic written or illustrated by a person of color
    • Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi**
  • A children’s classic published before 1980
    • The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
  • A celebrity memoir
    • The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

 

*2018 releases so not “back listed” but I either own them or will very very shortly.

**Library books I currently have at home

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How did everyone else do this month? What was your favorite read? Are any of these books on your February TBR? Let’s chat!

Beat the Backlist Challenge 2018

Hey guys! So 2018 is already underway and even though I have posted a wrap-up of last year which included any (reading) challenges I was planning on participating in, I only just saw this one and it is a must do.

Unlike the Popsugar and Book Riot challenges where you fill in prompts throughout the year with books you have read/are reading, Beat the Backlsit allows you to create your own TBR from already existing books on your list! There is no struggling to find the perfect book to fill a specific prompt. This is completely unique to you and your reading preferences, allowing you to slay those books you really (actually) want to get to.

You can find out more, or join the challenge here on their website! They also recommend you updating on social media platforms so that others can follow your progress (and that your progress gets your team credit throughout the year. I will be updating my progress (sporadically) on WordPress, but mostly through my personal twitter account. You can request to follow me/view my page here. **Just as a side note- my Twitter is personal, so I do not exclusively post about books/bookish things**

Update: I am on Team Story Sorcerers (how appropriate)! Can’t wait to get started!

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So, to start off 2018, here is my personal “Back List” that I will be desperately trying to dominate this year. These are all books that I physically own, and have not read (whether in ebook or physical form).

  1. Uncommon Type by Tom Hanks
  2. The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
  3. Camino Island by John Grisham
  4. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  5. The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen*
  6. Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman
  7. Artemis by Andy Weir
  8. Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo
  9. Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu*
  10. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowan
  11. A Man Called Ove by Fredrick Backman
  12. The Girls by Emma Cline
  13. Geekerella by Ashley Poston
  14. Watching Glass Shatter by James J Cudney
  15. The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
  16. Everyone’s and Aliebn When Ur a Aliebn too by Jonny Sun
  17. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  18. Little Fires Everywhere bu Celeste Ng
  19. All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood
  20. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch
  21. Red Clocks by Leni Zumas*
  22. A Dog’s Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron
  23. The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell

 

*Though these titles technically have 2018 publication dates (and those are not allowed for this challenge) they are on my list because I acquired ARCs of them in 2017 and have not started them yet.

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This looks like a pretty solid starting point for me. I am sure I will add more books to this list as I acquire them throughout the year. Again though- these are meant to be books you physically own, that are *not* new releases in 2018. Keep track of my progress and let me know how you are doing throughout the year!

POPSUGAR 2017 Reading Challenge Wrap-Up

So even before I started this wonderful little blog, I had been participating in the POPSUGAR reading challenges on my own. At first I would print them out and fill in books that matched as I went along. Last year though, I printed it out and wrote down choices for each prompt ahead of time. Sadly though, I have misplaced that paper since, and needless to say, did not follow through with many of the suggestions I gave myself.

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Instead, I have reprinted the challenge, and filled in from the books I read this past year as they fit. Today I will present you with those that I have filled (and missed). I feel the need to note that not all the books I read this year fit into the prompts, so this does not reflect a complete overlook of my reading this year.

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Without further ado, I give you the POPSUGAR 2017 Reading Challenge!

 

A book recommended by a librarian

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A book that’s been on your TBR list for way too long

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A book of letters

An audiobook

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A book by a person of color

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A book with one of the four seasons in the title

A book that is a story within a story

A book with multiple authors

An espionage thriller

A book with a cat on the cover

A book by an author who uses a pseudonym

A bestseller from a genre you don’t normally read

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A book by or about a person who has a disability

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A book involving travel

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A book with a subtitle

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a book that’s published in 2017

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a book involving a mythical creature

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I don’t know if you would consider ghosts mythical creatures…but it is as close as I could think of…

a book you’ve read before that never fails to make you smile

a book about food

a book with career advice

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I wouldn’t say that this had “career advice” but it was a book about things that happen in a place that I have made my career…close enough, right?

a book from a nonhuman perspective

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a steampunk novel

a book with a red spine

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a book set in the wilderness

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a book you loved as a child

a book by an author from a country you’ve never visited

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a book with a title that’s a characters name

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a novel set during wartime

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I actually read a lot of books about wartime this year. They are usually some of the best children’s writing that you can find.

a book with an unreliable narrator

a book with pictures

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a book where the main character is a different ethnicity than you

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a book about an interesting woman

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a book set in two different time periods

a book with a month or day of the week in the title

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a book set in a hotel

a book written by someone you admire

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a book that is becoming a movie in 2017

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a book set around a holiday other than Christmas

the first book in a series you haven’t read before

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a book you bought on a trip

Advanced List:

a book recommended by an author you love

a best seller from 2016

a book with a family member term in the title

a book that takes place over a character’s lifespan

a book about an immigrant or refugee

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a book from a genre/sub-genre that you’ve never heard of

a book with an eccentric character

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a book that is more than 800 pages

a book you got from a used book sale

a book that has been mentioned in another book

a book about a difficult topic

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a book based on mythology

 

I still haven’t decided whether or not I am going to map out next year’s list ahead of time with books already on my TBR or if I will just let it fly like I usually do. For those who are curious, here is where you can find 2018’s Reading Challenge.

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Do this with me! What are some prompts you are looking forward to filling? How do you usually participate in a challenge (if not this one, what else do you do throughout the year)?