Embarking upon the Read Harder Challenge

2:10 PM 0 Comments A+ a-

I love reading. I love challenges. If you put the two of them together, I'm basically in heaven. This is why I set seemingly unreasonable goals on Goodreads every year. This year, I've set it at 60, because the scramble to hit 52 at the end of last year apparently wasn't harrowing enough. 



At the beginning of January, my friend Joy alerted me to the existence of the Read Harder Challenge from Book Riot, which is apparently in its second year, and which consists of 24 different reading tasks that you can either complete individually, or complete by finding books that meet multiple criteria at once. Natch, I feel the need to find a different book for each requirement. After all, I'll still be less than halfway through my yearly goal, so what they hey, right?

I like the idea of this challenge because, while I don't necessarily stick to a specific genre or type of book, I am always of the conviction that I have some rather glaring blindspots that could stand to be addressed. My reading in 2015 included, among others:
  • 27 books authored or co-authored by women 
  • 6 audiobooks 
  • 7 memoirs 
  • 2 books by Jon Krakauer 
  • 13 books published in 2015 
  • 5 thrillers
  • 5 books about religion/philosophy
  • 5 books about war
  • 9 YA/children's novels
  • 1 diet book
Notably, though, not one Asian author made my list, nor anything set in the middle-east. I read nothing with an LGBTQ main character. Historical fiction was not on my radar. I didn't touch a single play, which is particularly disappointing as my friend Wes, upon his brief return from his life abroad in China, had hoped to reconvene the cast of our Whedon-esque A Midsummer Night's Dream table read from the summer before to take on another Shakespeare tome, but we forgot.
Just how Shakespeare intended his plays to be read.
I'm going to fix some of these shameful shortcomings this year. I've filled in my goals and I'm ready to roll. Anyone else doing Read Harder or another challenge? Let me know! Let's bookworm together! And as always, add me on Goodreads so I can obsessively follow your progress.