2014 was the first year I set two reading challenges for myself. That year they were focused on my own books and habits – specifically, an “off the shelf” challenge to read books I already owned and a rereading challenge. I intended to read 12 of each, but that proved to be too much! (In 2015 and 2016, my goal was to read six books per challenge.)
Off the Shelf Challenge
- The Stars My Destination, Alfred Bester
- The Skull Mantra, Eliot Pattison
- The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera
- Death Comes for the Archbishop, Willa Cather
- Life After Life, Kate Atkinson
- The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien
- Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
- The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde
- Sense and Sensibility, by Jane Austen
- Nerilka’s Story, by Anne McCaffrey
- Watership Down, by Richard Adams
- Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie
- A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett
In some ways, these two challenges were extremely successful – Death Comes for the Archbishop and Life After Life are two of my favorite books now and rereading Watership Down showed me that it was so much more than a children’s classic.
However, there were some parts that fell flat. I’d been looking forward to reading The Stars My Destination for some time – it’s a science fiction classic based on The Count of Monte Cristo for goodness’ sake! Except it’s grossly sexist and glorifies rape. I ought to do a critical reading to post here, but that would require reading it again, and I’m not sure I’m up for it.
Soon, I’ll post my 2015 challenges and following that, my progress on my 2016 challenges!