Challenge 2010

I need little reason to pick up an interesting book and dive in. Every since I got my grubby little hands on my first book, it’s rare not to find one (or 10 or 20) within arm’s reach.

Throughout my life, there have been clear examples that I became a bookworm early on:

  • Cleaning my room: Growing up, my bedroom was pretty much always a disaster. So when my mom was at her wits’ end and forced me to clean it, she would have to regularly check on me, as I would be hiding on the far side of my bed with my nose buried. After a couple of hours, the rolltop desk in the hallway supported a nice pile of books a foot or so high that she had confiscated.
  • Want Kate to shut up? Stick a book in her hands: As no one who knows me will be surprised, I can be verbose. Example: Spent most of first grade facing the wall by the pencil sharpener for talking in class. Anyway, family vacations consisted of many, many hours and hours and miles and miles in our camper/van, so my parents learned early on that the best way to manage me was to put a book in my hands. I think my dad instituted a “Kate’s book budget” every summer vacation, since I was also a quick reader.
  • Everybody knows your name: At our neighborhood library in Lisbon, all of the librarians knew my sister and I by first name. I bet we were there at least once a week picking out a new stash of books to enjoy. (We’ll skip the part where I was hoooooorrrrrrriiiiiible about returning books on time. My mom swears I personally paid for the library’s addition. Note: She also made me pay the fines out my weekly allowance, which somehow did not deter me from continuing to rack up more.)

Ok, enough of this stupid rambling, this blog isn’t about my weirdness (well, it may be down the line) as much as it’s about me taking on the challenge of reading 100 books in a year. The book challenge gauntlet was originally thrown down by my friend, The Book Pimp, who obtained the it from her cohort, Magnolia Kelly. (Want to make sure to give credit where credit is due.)

And as it isn’t just any 100 books, I’m going to loosely use the same rules as The Book Pimp:

Rule #1:
All new material. Although I love to re-read books, and have a number that I re-read on a yearly basis, re-reading kind of defeats the purpose of this exercise.

Rule #2:
No audio books. I will limit my audio book listening in the workplace to books I have already read.

Rule #3:
The 100 books have to represent a variety of genres and subjects. (From me, I’m changing up my categories from her’s a little bit.)

  • 20 recommendations from friends, colleagues or random people I meet on the street (or anyone brave enough to leave a comment here)
  • 15 classics
  • 10 books that have been adapted into movies
  • 5 autobiographies or biographies
  • 10 other non-fiction books
  • 2 books of poetry
  • 3 short story collections
  • 5 historical fiction
  • 5 science fiction
  • 10 fantasy
  • 3 graphic novels
  • 3 teen
  • 2 children’s
  • 1 romance
  • 1 Oprah’s book club pick
  • 5 “just for the hell of it” books

Hopefully, that equals 100.

Rule #4:
I will post a book report style review for each book that I finish, and I will also rate them, using a 1-5 star rating. (From me: I’m not much of a book report writer, so I’m going to choose one quote or passage from each book that is meaningful or impactful to me.)

Ok, I’m ready. Are you? Game on!

(By the way, I started my challenge on October 21, 2009. And, any book recommendations for the above categories will be much appreciated…)

———————————————————

TRACKING THE CHALLENGE

I’m on a quest…an honorable and mighty quest…to consume 100 books between the dates of October 21, 2009, and October 20, 2010. As with many things dealing with me, the date is arbitrary (as in the whimsical definition of this word, not the dictatorial version).

Of course, I couldn’t just make it any random 100 books; it had to be a true, throw-down-the-gauntlet challenge. For a look at the fairly ambitious pilgrimage I set out for myself, you’ll have to read the original challenge.

While I was always a pretty eclectic reader, we all get into reading ruts from time to time, repeat authors and genres with which we are enamored. If it is nothing else, this challenge has been a great practice in stepping outside the (book) box to uncover some new gems.

The list below is my running accountability of my quest status.

List last updated 10/20/10 = 100 down, 0 to go

Recommendation (20/20 = done)

  1. Dead in the Family – Charlaine Harris (311)
  2. Blockade Billy – Stephen King (144)
  3. The Fence My Father Built – Linda Clare (294)
  4. Water for Elephants – Sara Gruen (350)
  5. Sleep Toward Heaven – Amanda Eyre Ward (304)
  6. Little Children – Tom Perotta (368)
  7. A Touch of Dead – Charaine Harris (208)
  8. Seriel – Jack Kilborn and Blake Crouch
  9. Chasing Harry Winston – Lauren Weisberger (278)
  10. Driving with Dead People – Monica Holloway (336)
  11. Into the Wild – Jon Krakauer (207)
  12. Bone Worship – Elizabeth Eslami (368)
  13. Hide in Plain Sight – Marta Perry (256)
  14. Yertle the Turtle & Other Stories – Dr. Seuss (96)
  15. A Scattered Life – Karen McQuestion (266)
  16. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet – Jamie Ford (320)
  17. The Good Good Pig – Sy Montgomery (272)
  18. Revenant – Carolyn Haines (368)
  19. I Feel Bad About My Neck – Nora Ephron (160)
  20. Xenocide – Orson Scott Card (416)

Classics (15/15 = done, 2833 pages)

  1. Dracula – Bram Stoker (236)
  2. Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (94)
  3. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (246)
  4. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (480)
  5. The Man Who Would Be King – Rudyard Kipling (88)
  6. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow – Washington Irving (76)
  7. An Old-Fashioned Girl – Louisa May Alcott (360)
  8. Daisy Miller – Henry James (142)
  9. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Other Jazz Age Stories – F. Scott Fitzgerald (464)
  10. Alexander’s Bridge – Willa Sibert Cather (92)
  11. Siddhartha – Hermann Hesse (108)
  12. Civil Disobedience – Henry David Thoreau (26)
  13. The Member of the Wedding – Carson McCullers (176)
  14. Botchan – Natsume Soseki (80)
  15. Fahrenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury (165)

Movie adaptations (10/10 = done, 3937 pages)

  1. Shutter Island – Dennis Lehane (400)
  2. The Princess Bride – William Goldman (512)
  3. I, Robot – Isaac Asimov (256)
  4. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson (600)
  5. Ethan Frome – Edith Warton (128)
  6. Nights in Rodanthe – Nicholas Sparks (240)
  7. Charlie St. Cloud – Ben Sherwood (320)
  8. Bee Season – Myla Goldberg (275)
  9. The Girl Who Played with Fire – Stieg Larsson (630)
  10. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest – Stieg Larsson (576)

Autobiographies/biographies (5/5 = done, 1570)

  1. How Starbucks Saved My Life – Michael Gates Gill (272)
  2. Mornings on Horseback – David McCullough (370)
  3. The Glass Castle – Jeannette Walls (288)
  4. John Newton: From Disgrace to Amazing Grace – Jonathan Aitken (400)
  5. Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl – Stacey O’Brien (240)

Other non-fiction (10/10 = done, 2704 pages)

  1. Have a Little Faith – Mitch Albom (272)
  2. Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster – Jon Krakauer (332)
  3. Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman – Jon Krakauer (416)
  4. The Johnstown Flood – David McCullough (267)
  5. The Daily Coyote – Shreve Stockton (287)
  6. Eiger Dreams: Ventures Among Men and Mountains – Jon Krakauer (208)
  7. Orange Is the New Black – Piper Kerman (320)
  8. The Case for Easter – Lee Strobel (96)
  9. Ship Ashore – Joe A. Mobley (170)
  10. Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight – Alexandra Fuller (336)

Poetry (2/2 = done, 145 pages)

  1. The Trouble with Poetry – Billy Collins (85)
  2. The Spell of the Yukon and Other Verses – Robert Service (60)

Short story collections (3/3 = done, 880 pages)

  1. The Girls’ Guide to Hunting and Fishing – Melissa Bank (304)
  2. Too Much Happiness – Alice Munro (320)
  3. Best Sex Writing 2010 – Rachel Kramer Bussel (256)

Historical fiction (5/5 = done, 1848)

  1. Fireflies in December – Jennifer Erin Valent (362)
  2. Kuy Syan Joshua – Magnolia Belle (396)
  3. Little Wolf Ranch – Magnolia Belle (496)
  4. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society – Mary Ann Shaffer (274)
  5. T’on Ma – Magnolia Belle (320)

Science fiction (5/5 = done, 1368)

  1. Brainbox – Christian Cantrell
  2. Containment – Christian Cantrell (248)
  3. Star Trek: TNG: Enterprises of Great Pitch and Moment – Keith R. A. DeCandido (320)
  4. Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card (384)
  5. Speaker for the Dead – Orson Scott Card (416)

Fantasy (10/10 = done, 3675 pages)

  1. Dead Until Dark – Charlaine Harris (336)
  2. Living Dead in Dallas – Charlaine Harris (320)
  3. Club Dead – Charlaine Harris (304)
  4. Dead to the World – Charlaine Harris (304)
  5. Dead as a Doornail – Charlaine Harris (295)
  6. Definitely Dead – Charlaine Harris (352)
  7. All Together Dead – Charlaine Harris (352)
  8. From Dead to Worse – Charlaine Harris (336)
  9. Dead and Gone – Charlaine Harris (320)
  10. Breaking Dawn – Stephanie Meyer (756)

Graphic novels (3/3 = done)

  1. Star Trek: Nero – Numbers 1-4
  2. Coraline – Neil Gaiman (192)
  3. Owly: Splashin’ Around

Teen (3/3 = done, 1760 pages)

  1. Twilight – Stephanie Meyer (544)
  2. New Moon – Stephanie Meyer (576)
  3. Eclipse – Stephanie Meyer (640)

Children’s (2/2 = done, 80 pages)

  1. The Christmas Miracle of Jonathon Toomey – Susan Wojciechowski (40)
  2. Amelia’s Are-We-There-Yet Longest Ever Car Trip – Marissa Moss (40)

Romance (1/1 = done, 195 pages)

  1. Coming Out – Danielle Steel (195)

Oprah’s book club (1/1 = done, 224 pages))

  1. The Reader – Bernhard Schlink (224)

Just for the hell of it (5/5 = done, 1704 pages)

  1. Crybaby Ranch – Tina Welling (307)
  2. Treason – Don Brown (325)
  3. Hostage – Don Brown (352)
  4. Defiance – Don Brown (336)
  5. The Apocalypse Stone – Pete Earley (384)

5 Responses to “Challenge 2010”

  1. Liz August 15, 2010 at 10:17 pm #

    I think this is the coolest idea ever! I love reading new books, and I always need new recommendations!

    http://polkadotsock.wordpress.com

  2. kateeidam August 16, 2010 at 12:20 pm #

    Thanks for the feedback. I’m plugging away to reach my goal. It’s been a fun ride though. Even though I’m a pretty eclectic reader in general, the different genre approach has forced me outside my reading comfort zone. There are some books I’ve found and loved, but wouldn’t have likely read if it wasn’t for this.

  3. Gretchen October 19, 2010 at 11:24 am #

    KT, I will need to take this kind of challenge… It won’t be hard. I just need to keep track of the books 🙂
    Congrats on your accomplishment!!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Mic and Jack’s summer vacation reading list (via Loonyville) « The 100 Book Ninja - August 22, 2010

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  2. Ender’s Game = 81 down, 19 to go « The 100 Book Ninja - August 22, 2010

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