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Checking in on Book Riot’s 2016 Read Harder Challenge

book riotLast week, in a bit of packing-related procrastination, I decided to check in on how I was doing with Book Riot’s 2016 Read Harder Challenge. Last year, I managed to finish 19 of the 24 tasks, which I thought was pretty good. Unfortunately, I’m not doing as well on the challenge this year. After seven months, I’ve only finished eight of the 24 tasks!

Here are the tasks, with the ones I’ve manged to complete so far in bold:

  1. Read a horror book –
  2. Read a nonfiction book about science –
  3. Read a collection of essays – You’ll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein
  4. Read a book out loud to someone else –
  5. Read a middle grade novel –
  6. Read a biography (not memoir or autobiography) – HRC by Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes
  7. Read a dystopian or post-apocalyptic novel – The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood
  8. Read a book originally published in the decade you were born –
  9. Listen to an audio book that has won an Audie Award –
  10. Read a book over 500 pages long – Stiletto by Daniel O’Malley
  11. Read a book under 100 pages – Ongoingness by Sarah Manguso
  12. Read a book by or about a person that identifies as transgender –
  13. Read a book that is set in the Middle East –
  14. Read a book that is by an author from Southeast Asia –
  15. Read a book of historical fiction set before 1900 – The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
  16. Read the first book in a series by a person of color –
  17. Read a non-superhero comic that debuted in the last three years –
  18. Read a book that was adapted into a movie then watch the movie –
  19. Read a nonfiction book about feminism or dealing with feminist themes – Something New by Lucy Knisley
  20. Read a book about religion (fiction or nonfiction) –
  21. Read a book about politics in your country or another (fiction or nonfiction) – Another Day in the Death of America by Gary Younge
  22. Read a food memoir –
  23. Read a play –
  24. Read a book with a main character that has a mental illness –

Given everything going on in the next few months, I’m not sure that I will get to really focus on this particular reading goal for the year. But I’m ok with that too. Either way, I’d love some of your suggestions for books that meet some of my unfinished tasks for the year!

{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Sarah's Book Shelves July 28, 2016, 6:39 am

    Here’s the few recs I have…

    Science nonfiction: Lab Girl (I haven’t actually read it, but have heard good things)
    Book Out Loud: any kids book to any kid!
    Food Memoir: Does Dinner With Edward count as a food memoir? I think so and really enjoyed it!

    Good luck!

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:07 am

      I’ve got Lab Girl queued up as an audio book for my vacation this week — I’ve heard lots of good things about it.

  • AnneL July 28, 2016, 8:09 am

    I’m doing the challenge again this year and I’m almost done (gotta read a book aloud to someone and I’m in the middle of Dark Matter and Dinosaurs).

    A couple that I liked:
    If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo – Transgender protagonist
    Saga – Non superhero comic
    The Burning Sky by Sherry Thomas – first book in a series by a person of color
    I listened to Jim Dale read Around the World in 80 Days which was thoroughly enjoyable

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:09 am

      Thanks for the recommendations!

  • Amelia July 28, 2016, 12:47 pm

    I just did the same thing, I went through the list and compared what I’ve read with the challenges and then added some books for the challenges I want to attempt next. A few that I’ve read or will read in categories you still need:

    Horror book – Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
    NF Science book – Cosmos by Carl Sagen
    Middle Grade novel – Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhug (just finished reading it this morning)
    Audie award – Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson
    book by or about a person who identifies as transgendered – Trans by Juliet Lacques
    first in a series by a person of color – A Virtuous Ruby
    Book about religion – The Faith Club
    A play – Harry Potter and The Cursed Child

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:10 am

      Good suggestion on Shirley Jackson, I have her biography to read this fall, but I wanted to read some of her fiction ahead of time.

  • Shaina July 28, 2016, 3:37 pm

    There’s still time! 🙂 My rec is short, too, so you could be able to squeeze it in. For middle-grade novel, I could not more highly recommend A WIZARD OF EARTHSEA by Ursula K. Le Guin.

    Best of luck with packing!

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:11 am

      Thanks for the suggestion — that’s one of the categories I was struggling with because I don’t have any occasion to read middle grade.

  • Amanda July 29, 2016, 11:59 am

    Horror I’d read Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix. It’s hilarious and not too gross. MG – Wonder at the Edge of the World was great.

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:11 am

      Good suggestions! I’m apprehensive about horror — it’s not my normal genre — and so was looking for a “light” version.

  • Kailana July 30, 2016, 8:29 am

    I am planning to read Lab Girl, which I see someone suggested above, on audio. I am seeing lots of good buzz about it in general. And, I don’t think it is very long. The comic prompt just means you need to check out some new comic book series. I am actually surprised you haven’t read one that counts, but maybe I am thinking of books you read last year. 🙂

    • Kim July 31, 2016, 11:13 am

      I’ve heard nothing but good things about Lab Girl, it’s queued up for this week’s plane rides to and from Portland. My comics reading has been pretty slow this year, mostly older stuff and keeping up with series I’ve been reading. I need to expand!

  • Julie Eckerle August 1, 2016, 12:43 pm

    Have you tried The Passage for horror? There’s also the sequel The Twelve. And the third City of Mirrors. I’m not usually a horror reader, but I absolutely love this series. Justin Cronin.

    • Kim August 13, 2016, 12:29 pm

      I haven’t, thanks for the recommendation!

  • Buried In Print August 15, 2016, 12:32 pm

    I’ve got to check-in as well, before the autumn strikes and the swell of new reading and fresh bookllists. It’s a great mix of categories though: a lot of fun. Haven’t heard of that Lucy Knisley in your feminist category: will have to take a peek around for it!

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