I long planned to join in with Megan at Semi-Charmed Kind of Life on her Summer Book Challenge. It has quirky categories. I like quirky categories. Normally I would sit here for hours and work out which books they will be, but this time I am going to let things develop more organically. Here are the categories, and I'll let you know the books as I read them. (Lucky you.)
5 points: Freebie! Read any book that is at least 200 pages long. A Rogue By Any Other Name; Sarah MacLean.
10 points: Read a book that was written before you were born. The Man in the High Castle; Phillip K Dick.
10 points: Finish reading a book you couldn't finish the first time around. (You must have at least 150 pages left in the book to use it for this category.) There has only really ever been one book that I put back down and didn't pick up again: I dread going back, but looks like I will have to. It is Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's August 1914. Yay. Love gigantic war fiction epics. These points may go wanting.
10 points: Read a book from the children’s section of the library or bookstore. The Name of this Book is Secret: Psuedonymous Bosch.
15 points: Read a book that is on The New York Times' Best Sellers List when you begin reading it.
15 points: Read a historical fiction book that does not take place in Europe.
15 points: Read a book another blogger has already read for the challenge. (Yes, you will have to wait until the first check-in to choose this book! So no one will be able to finish this challenge in only one month; sorry!)
20 points: Read a book with “son(s),” “daughter(s)” or “child(ren)” in the title. No other words will count—including kids, offspring, etc.—so please don’t ask. :) Ooh, perfect opportunity to get out the Salman and do a little magical realism in Midnight's Children.
20 points: Read a book that was/will be adapted to film in 2014. Gone Girl; Gillian Flynn.
25 points: Read a book written by a blogger. (Submitted by Jessica of The Tangerine.)
25 points: Read a biography, autobiography or memoir.
30 points: Read a pair of books with antonyms in the titles. The Hanging Valley; Peter Robinson and Highland Surrender; Tracy Brogan. Valley and Highland. Get it? Too much of a stretch?
What I didn't plan was to find one more little challenge that looks like fun. It's The Morning News Tournament of Books (ToB) shortlist. I have just discovered this 'thing'. Every March, The Morning News selects around sixteen of the best books published the previous year and randomly sets them in the ring, two by two, to fight it out. A more succinct explanation can be found here. For us mere mortals in the reading world, we can follow along the battles (too late now, come back next March), or, like I am going to do, we can read the books. Any excuse to read more books. Here is the list:
At Night We Walk In Circles by Daniel Alarcón
The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton
The Tuner of Silences by Mia Couto
The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsim Hamid
The Dinner by Herman Koch
The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri
Long Division by Kiese Laymon
The Good Lord Bird by James McBride
Hill William by Scott McClanahan
The Son by Philipp Meyer
A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
The People in the Trees by Hamya Yanagihara
Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
Woke up Lonely by Fiona Maazel
That is it though! No more book challenges for this year. It's a grand total of four: the one above, the one below, the Eclectic Book Challenge 2014 and the Around the World in Twelve Books Challenge. And of course, Goodreads over there in the sidebar. No more. And I'm thinking cross-contamination may happen. Better get something read now!
Who Wore It Better?
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