Friday, December 31, 2021

My Year in Reading

 Here are my results for reading in 2021.

I am now ready to start again tomorrow as 2022 begins. Not sure yet what my first read of the new year will be. 
In July I got 31 books, and 34 in December, the most I can recall in a single month. A lot of my December books were short ones, including several holiday picture books. 
I am now anxious to see what my longest and shortest books next year will be. I knew I would not get anything longer than 1,084 pages this year.  I did not (and do not ever) envision reading two 1000+ page books in one year, though I did get several books that were 400 or more pages. Most picture books and some poetry books and ebooks and audiobooks were done in one sitting. 

There are a few challenges for 2022 I am still waiting on, to see if they will happen. No word yet on the Newbery, Dystopian, Back to the Classics, or NJM challenges. I'm also waiting on the Foodies Read, though that one usually gets posted on January 1. If none of these happen, there are others I will consider. I was sad to learn that two I have been doing will not be happening next year. The Reading Women podcast has closed down, meaning its reading challenge will no longer happen. I really liked that one. I did find something similar, though, for next year.  And I got an email from the Modern Mrs. Darcy site that her challenge will not be offered next year. That too, was a little upsetting. But I have plenty others I can do.
Still no retelling challenges happening that I have seen, although the Fairy Tale challenge comes close, as reading a retelling of the tale-of-the-month is one of the options.

The Nerd Daily’s 2022 Reading Challenge

 Decided to do this one again. Last year was my first time.

  1. Book with a red spine:
  2. Debut author:
  3. Bookstore recommendation:
  4. Title starts with F or S:
  5. Mystery or middle grade:
  6. NY Times bestseller:
  7. Set in summer:
  8. Bought based on cover:
  9. Anthology:
  10. Recommended by family/friend:
  11. Part of a series: The Rivals--Daisy Whitney
  12. 2022 movie adaptation:
  13. Reviewed by Nerd Daily in 2022:
  14. Author starting with R:
  15. A retelling:
  16. YA or sci-fi:
  17. Released in February 2022:
  18. Under 350 pages:
  19. Four-word title:
  20. Fantasy or romance:
  21. A book you never finished:
  22. Purple on the cover:
  23. Reread:
  24. Recommended on social media:
  25. Protagonist starts with B:
  26. Standalone:
  27. 2022 TV adaptation:
  28. An author new to you:
  29. Released in July 2022:
  30. #ownvoices author:
  31. A questionable cover:
  32. Author starting with G:
  33. A book gifted to you:
  34. Protagonist starting with T:
  35. In your TBR pile:
  36. Non-fiction or audiobook: Kitchen Confidential--Anthony Bourdain
  37. #booktok recommendation:
  38. Bought based on cover:
  39. Setting: where you'd rather be:
  40. Written by a fave author:
  41. Features a journey:
  42. Start a new series: The Mockingbirds--Daisy Whitney
  43. Number in the title:
  44. Released before you were born:
  45. Picked at random:
  46. Quoted by an author you like:
  47. Illustrated cover:
  48. One-word title: Moloka'i--Alan Brennert
  49. Bought on holidays:
  50. Book with blue spine:
  51. Multiple perspectives:
  52. BIPOC author:

Thursday, December 30, 2021

The 2022 Pick Your Poison Reading Challenge

This is my third time doing this challenge. In 2020, I picked Bakers'd Dozen as my goal, but upgraded to Fortnightly. I chose Fortnightly again in 2021, then just kept going to see much farther I could get with the list (I ended up covering all the categories, including all the Wildcard categories). This is how I will approach the challenge for 2022. (Click the link in the paragraph above to see a larger image of the categories graphic).

A to Z
Book with the letter Z in the title:
Author whose name starts with A or Z:
Book about letters:
A "comprehensive" book:

The Same, But Not
Book with color red or word "read" on cover:
Author whose last name could be a first name: The Red Queen--Philippa Gregory
Retelling of a classic:
A "He said, she said" book

What's the Dish?
Book with mug or cup on cover:
Book that includes recipes:
Book about food from another culture:
Book about gossip:

Book about memory loss:
Author whose name you remember easily:
Book with word "remember" in title:
A diary:

Back to Basics
Classic novel:
By a well-known author:
A paperback:

Time is Ticking
Book with a clock on the cover:
Book about time travel: The Time Traveler's Wife--Audrey Niffenegger
Suspense novel:
Book to pass the time while your favorite author finishes their next novel:

'Til the Fat Lady Sings
Book about body image:
Space Opera:
Book with word "over" in title:
Book about a singer/musician:

It's All Relative
Book about animal families:
Book that relates to an interest you have:
Book about finding family:
Book with "aunt" or "uncle" in title:

Book by author who sounds like a geek:
Cover that reminds you of a video game:
Book about an obsessive hobby:
Book about fandom or fanfic:

Workin' for a Living
Book by author whose name is a trade or profession:
Memoir focused on author's profession:
Protagonist works in field similar to yours:
Nonfiction book about worker's rights:

Cover Up
Cover with someone who could use some clothes:
Book with blue cover:
Book with multiple fonts on cover:
Book with author's name above the title

Taking the Plunge
Book with cliff or ocean on cover:
Book by author you've always wanted to read:
Book over 600 pages: Glass--Ellen Hopkins
Book someone dares you to read:

Book set somewhere you might wear shorts:
Book under 150 pages:
Book wider than it is tall:

Book with "attic" or "kitchen" in title: Kitchen Confidential--Anthony Bourdain
Book by author who lives in another country:
Book about a movie being filmed on location:
Book about your homeland:

TBR Guilt
Book dusty from waiting to be read:
Book someone gave you that you haven't read yet:
Book you've been meaning to read: Castle Rackrent and The Absentee--Maria Edgeworth
New release you feel guilty reading because TBR list is so long:

Book with devious villain:
Book about a craft you do or would like to learn about:
Book with craft-related pun in title:
Book known for unexpected twist at end:

People We Should Know
Book about women's issues:
Book by BIPOC author:
Book with LBGTQIA+ protagonist:
Book written by immigrant:

Book about a heroic event:
Nonfiction book about someone you admire:
Book with "feet" or "clay" in title:
Book with cape or cloak on cover:

Crossing Over
Book with "bridge" in title:
Book about a ghost:
Book that crosses two genres:
Book with X or cross on cover:

Childhood Days
Reread childhood favorite:
Book about the circus:
Book set within 10 years of your birth:
Coming of age story: Moloka'i--Alan Brennert

Book about a mythical creature:
Book about a legendary hero:
Book about lost treasure:
By an author you consider amazing:

Book with alternating timelines or narrators:
Book that features a classic car:
Book that takes place on both land and sea:
Alternate history:

Musical Inspirations
West Side Story--a tragic love story:
Sweeney Todd--book about revenge:
Phantom of the Opera--book about a hidden world:
Chicago--set in jail or prison:

Other Lands
Book translated from another language:
Book by author from country you'd like to visit:
Book set in area geographically different from your home:
Book with "land" in title:

Timely Topics
Book about a pandemic:
Book about climate change:
Book about a social movement:
Book about space travel:

Stories with Grit
A Western:
Book with a desert on cover:
Beach read:
Gritty detective story:

Book with an orange cover:
An epistolary book:
Award-winning book:
Book at least 20 years older than you:
Book about your favorite animal: 

Happy Stay Home for New Year's Eve

With new cases of the virus occurring, people are now being advised to avoid large gatherings on New Year's Eve. Just like last year, I'm prepared to stay home. Even before COVID hit, I had pretty much given up on going out for New Year's Eve. So I was somewhat prepared.

I don't think I'll be missing much by staying home. But I do hope it will be safer to go out to celebrations next year. I really did miss being out for Halloween this year. That's one I want to be out for. I have been hesitant this past year about such celebrations since I will not know who has been vaccinated or not, and may encounter people without masks. Like everyone else int the world, I'm awaiting the day this will no longer have to be true.

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Fairytale Reading Challenge 2022

 Here is a new one to me.

Each month there is a fairytale prompt. You can read a retelling or the original fairytale. For 2021, several people also watched a movie for each prompt as well. 

January: Die, Snow White! Die, You D*** Fool!--Yuri Rasovsky












Friday, December 24, 2021

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Last Christmas

It's now Christmas Eve and the world is facing nearly the same thing as last Christmas. The virus is still looming, with the new variant. Even though we now have vaccines, which we didn't have a year ago, there are still people refusing to get them. And now hospital workers are preparing once again to treat COVID patients.   

I have been hesitant to get out, worrying over the size of the crowds and not knowing who has been fully vaccinated, and possibly seeing others without masks on. As much as I would have liked to see the the local production of Beauty and the Beast Jr., (which had been postponed from March of 2020 following the initial COVID shutdown), I was hesitant to do so. And I skipped going to the bar celebrations for Halloween since I had only received my booster less than two weeks prior. I don't count on going out for New Year's Eve, though, since I have not done so in years, even before the coronavirus hit. And I have nothing big planned for Christmas tomorrow, something that has been true for several years now, again even before COVID. 

Now it seems we're heading into a two-year pandemic. Who knows how much longer this will go on. 

Whatever you are celebrating, have a happy holiday, whatever you plan to do.

2022 Book to Movie (and TV) Reading Challenge

 Doing this once again.

My books:

  1. The Time Traveler's Wife--Audrey Niffenegger

Thursday, December 23, 2021


 I'm doing this one again, getting as many books as possible.

WHAT COUNTS AS "EUROPE"?: For this challenge, we use the standard list of 50 sovereign states that fall (at least partially) within the geographic territory of the continent of Europe and/or enjoy membership in international European organizations such as the Council of Europe. This list includes the obvious (the UK, France, Germany, and Italy), Scandinavian countries, the really huge Russia, the tiny Vatican City, and the mixed bag of Balkan, Baltic, and former Soviet states. Please see note below about the UK in particular. 

These 50 European sovereign states are:
Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Vatican City.
NOTE: Even with Brexit, the United Kingdom is still one country, part of Europe, that includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. One book from any one of these four counts as your one book for the United Kingdom. Challenges should be about fun not about rules, so I'm not going to be the Challenge Police about this. However, when it comes to winning the Jet Setter prize, only one book from one of the UK countries counts.


Participants can read as many books as they want and are encouraged to visit as many European countries as possible. The Jet Setter Prize will go to the person who reads (and reviews) books from the greatest number of different countries (see below).

Not everyone wants to compete for a prize, review books, or read a lot of books. You can "complete" the challenge by reading one to five books from different countries. If you want to do more, read more books and compete for the prize.

To participate in the challenge, sign up at the levels below. If you want to go on to compete for the Prize, keep reading!

  • FIVE STAR (DELUXE ENTOURAGE): Read at least five books by different European authors or books set in different European countries.
  • FOUR STAR (HONEYMOONER): Read four qualifying books.
  • THREE STAR (BUSINESS TRAVELER): Read three qualifying books.
  • TWO STAR (ADVENTURER): Read two qualifying books.
  • ONE STAR (PENSIONE WEEKENDER): Read just one qualifying book.

My Books:

  1. The Red Queen--Philippa Gregory (UK)

The Feminist Reading Challenge 2022

 I was sad to learn that the Reading Women podcast is ending this year and as such, so is the Reading Women challenge. I was glad to find this new one, by this Instagram user:

My Books:

  1. Short-story collection: When It Happens to You--Molly Ringwald
  2. Historical Fiction by an African Writer: The Red Queen--Philippa Gregory

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

2022 Southern Literature Reading Challenge

Another I am doing again next year, at Introverted Reader.

2022 Southern Literature Reading Challenge Button

Definition of “The South”

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia

Level 1–C’mon in the house! Read 1-2 books.

Level 2–Pull up a seat and stay a while! Read 3-4 books

Level 3–Have a glass of sweet iced tea, honey. Read 5-6 books

Level 4–Y’all come back now, y’hear! Read 7+ books

My Books:

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

2022 Books in Translation Reading Challenge

 Doing this one again, getting as many books as possible.

  • You can read a book that’s been translated from any language into the language of your choosing. The challenge is not limited to translations to or from English.
  • You can read any genre
  • You can read books meant for any age group
  • Crossovers with other challenges are fine
  • Any format that you choose is also acceptable

My Books:

Monday, December 20, 2021

Romance Throughout the Year Challenge for 2022

I missed there being a general challenge for reading romance last year. Now there are several offered for 2022, and it was hard deciding on one, but this is the one I chose.

January: Time Travel Romance: The Time Traveler's Wife--Audrey Niffenegger

February: Regency Romance

March: Discover a New Culture! – For this month, we recommend finding a romance that centers a culture that’s not your own. 

April: Historical fiction other than Regency – For this month, we recommend finding a romance from a historical period you’d like to learn more about!

May: Celebrity Romance

June: LGBTQIA+ Romance

July: Shared Hobby Romance – A romance where the love interests share a hobby like reading, baking, etc.

August: Fantasy Romance

September: Retelling a Romance

October: Science Fiction Romance

November: 2022 Release

December: Winter Holiday Romance

Book Bingo 2022 @ Unruly Reader

 I first did this one in 2020, but passed last year. Will get as many squares as possible.

This year’s theme is Time — because we kept thinking of topics that evoked different aspects of time.

My books:

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Monday, December 13, 2021

2022 Reading Challenge @ Linz the Bookworm

 Another I have have enjoyed doing.

Level 1: Book of the Month Club
1. Read a book that cost less than $5: Castle Rackrent and The Absentee--Maria Edgeworth
2. Read a book that is under 350 pages
3. Read a book that was recommended to you
4. Read a newly published book (within the past year)
5. Read a book that has a type of plant or flower in the title
6. Read a book because of the cover
7. Read a book about a mythical creature
8. Read a book that takes place in the future
9. Read a book by an author that’s new to you
10. Read a book from NPR’s top 50 Sci-Fi and Fantasy Books of the past decade
11. A book by an author whose first or last name has 5 letters
12. Free Space – Pick any book

Level 2: Casual Reader Club
13. Read a book published 5 years ago
14. Read a Speculative Fiction
15. Read the first book in a duology: The Mockingbirds--Daisy Whitney
16. Read the second book in a duology: The Rivals--Daisy Whitney
17. A book that was published when you were 5 years old
18. Read a book by an author named Alex, Alexander, Alexandra (or variant)
19. Read a book about Zombies
20. Read a book with a black cover
21. Read a book from’s list of 100 (fiction) books to read in a lifetime
22. Read a book with the word City in the title
23. Read a book about a musician (non-fiction or fiction)
24. Free Space – Pick any book

Level 3: Dedicated Reader Club
25. A book with a title that has 5 letters: Glass--Ellen Hopkins
26. Read a book published by Macmillan (or subsidiary)
27. Read a book with a title that doesn’t start with an article (A, An, The)
28. Read a book you recently acquired
29. Read a book that’s been on your TBR for over a year
30. Read a Revenge Story
31. Read a book by Philippa Gregory: The Red Queen
32. Read a book that takes place on an island: Moloka'i--Alan Brennert
33. Read a book that does not have a person (or people) on the cover
34. A book that you intended to read on last year’s challenge
35. Read a Pyschological Thriller
36. Free Space – Pick any book

Level 4: Speed Reader Club
37. Read a book over 500 pages: The Time Traveler's Wife--Audrey Niffenegger
38. Read a book that starts with the letter Z (or has Z in the title)
39. Read a book that takes place around your favorite holiday
40. A book with 5 objects on the cover: Kitchen Confidential--Anthony Bourdain
41. Read a book with the word Wisdom in the title
42. Read a Dystopian Fiction
43. Read a book by an author with the same name as one of your parents (Biological, Step, Adopted)
44. Read a book that a movie/show you’ve watched is based on but have yet to read (example: Watched The Hobbit, but never read the Hobbit)
45. Read a book about a Saint (non-Fiction or Fiction)
46. Read any book from the Men’s Health most popular book list 
47. Read a book published in a year that was important to you
48. Free Space – Pick any book

Level 5: Overachiever Club
49. Read the 5th book in a series or an author’s 5th novel
50. Read a True Crime book
51. Read a book by Georges Simenon (or one of his Pen Names)
52. A book with the number 5 in the title
53. Read a book that takes place in Russia
54. Read a book by an author using intials as part of their name
55. Read a book that has a title in the form of a question
56. Read a banned book from this banned book list 
57. A book with at least 5 prominent characters
58. Read a book that Linz read previously (see book review archive here)
59. Read a book that Tress read previously (see reading category archive here)
60. Free Space – Pick any book