Book Riot Logo


I didn’t manage to complete all my reading challenges from last year, but I had great fun participating in them, and I did find that they caused me to foray into new reading territory and discover a few books that I am very glad to have read. So this year I’m trying again. I’ll be joining in a few, the first of which is Book Riot’s 2015 Read Harder Challenge.

Diversity was a big topic of discussion for readers and online book folks in 2014. I for one think it should always be a big topic of discussion – and I have become more aware of the fact that my own reading could really use a bit of diversification. It seems I’m not the only one. This year’s Read Harder Challenge is all about diversity and features books from different genres, cultures and formats. Some of these I can easily see myself completing in the course of my regular reading, others will require some conscious effort. But I’m really excited to give it a try!

Here are the details of the challenge:

    1. A book written by someone when they were under the age of 25 The Shore by Sara Taylor (I think…)
    2. A book written by someone when they were over the age of 65 A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler  
    3. A collection of short stories (either by one person or an anthology by many people)One More Thing by B.J. Novak 
    4. A book published by an indie press
    5. A book by or about someone that identifies as LGBTQ  Just Kids by Patti Smith 
    6. A book by a person whose gender is different from your own Why New Orleans Matters by Tom Piazza
    7. A book that takes place in Asia
    8. A book by an author from Africa Leaving Before the Rains Come by Alexandra Fuller
    9. A book that is by or about someone from an indigenous culture (Native Americans, Aboriginals, etc.)
    10. A microhistory
    11. A YA novel Black Dove White Raven by Elizabeth Wein 
    12. A sci-fi novelAlive by Scott Sigler
    13. A National Book Award, Man Booker Prize or Pulitzer Prize winner from the last decade A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan 
    14. A book that is a retelling of a classic story (fairytale, Shakespearian play, classic novel, etc.)
    15. An audiobook
    16. A collection of poetry – Not sure if this counts, but since I’m not big on poetry, likely the only book of poems I’ll read is Citizen by Claudia Rankine
    17. A book that someone else has recommended to you Swamplandia! by Karen Russell 
    18. A book that was originally published in another languageA book that was Blood On Snow by Jo Nesbø 
    19. A graphic novel, a graphic memoir or a collection of comics of any kind (Hi, have you met Panels?)
    20. A book that you would consider a guilty pleasure (Read, and then realize that good entertainment is nothing to feel guilty over) Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella
    21. A book published before 1850
    22. A book published this year  The Girl On the Train by Paula Hawkins 
    23. A self-improvement book (can be traditionally or non-traditionally considered “self-improvement”)

I’ll be updating this post with my progress as I go along, and would love to hear from any of you who are participating in this challenge. Even better if you’ve got some excellent recommendations that fit into any of these challenge categories! Particularly a book published by an indie press, a microhistory, a romance novel that hopefully won’t make me sprain an eyeball rolling them, and a book published before 1850 that is somewhat accessible.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *