Sunday, 1 January 2017

Reading Challenge Round-Up 2016

Happy New Year! This is my Reading Challenge Round-Up for 2016. I don't have the time or patience to do separate posts for all my challenges. There are still too many essays waiting to be corrected and graded before I go back to work in a few days. For anyone interested in which books I read for the various challenges, visit my Goodreads page, where I have shelves assigned and clearly labelled for each of them.

1. The Cannonball Read. The reason I even have this blog and the "challenge" nearest and dearest to my heart. I was not able to complete as many books as last year, but did manage a total of 135, so a little bit more than two and a half Cannonballs. With my workload this past semester, it's amazing I've managed as much reading and reviewing as I have.

2. You Read How Many Books? hosted by the Crafty Engineer. I signed up for level 2, 150 books and am sad to say that I did not manage to reach this goal. My grand total for the year was 137 (although some of those were re-read more than once). I'll have to set a lower goal next year.

3. Alphabet Soup 2016, hosted by Dollycas. I completed this challenge in the middle of December, mainly because I'd gotten a bit lax about checking off the various letters. It's a really fun challenge, I will be repeating it next year.

4. Colour Coded Reading Challenge 2016, hosted by My Reader's Block. I managed to complete this challenge by the end of May. After they made it possible to read books that feature the colour not just in the name, but as the dominant colour of the cover, this has become a lot easier to complete. Absolutely repeating it next year.

5. The 2016 TBR Pile Reading Challenge, hosted by Bookish Lifestyle once again stopped posting link-up posts by May, I think it was. They seem to be a bit bad about organising the actual challenge throughout the year. Nonetheless, I tried chipping away at my TBR, and was able to reduce it by 78 books. Please don't ask me how many books I've added to the list over the course of the year (I wouldn't be able to answer even if I tried).

6. The Bring Your Own Books Challenge, or B.Y.O.B, is hosted by Literary Distractions. Trying to actually read some of the many many unread books that I own, I finished this challenge having read 42 books that I owned prior to 2016. Again, let's not ask how many books I added to my shelves (most of which I haven't read either)

7. The 2016 Monthly Key Word Challenge, hosted by My Soul Called Life, is one of my favourite challenges and I've really tried to find books I actually OWN with the keywords in them. That doesn't always work, but I managed to read at least one book every month that fit with the assigned keywords, and for most of the months, quite a few more. I ended up having read 43 books for this challenge this year

8. What an Animal IX Challenge, hosted by Socrates' Book Reviews is really a piece of cake for me, as I read so many books featuring paranormal creatures and shapeshifters. As the challenge also allows you to add any book with an animal in the title or on the cover, or in some other way important to the plot, I always enjoy this challenge, because I do so well at it. I set myself the highest level - 21 or more books, and had completed that by early July. In the end, I read 55 books that fit into this challenge.

9. Finishing the Series 2016 is now hosted by Bea's Book Nook was another challenge where the host just plain forgot to make posts where you could log your reviews. I'd promised myself to finish at least 7 ongoing series this year, I ended up managing to complete 28.

10. I suspect the 2016 Women Challenge, hosted by Peek a Book is actually aimed at someone who doesn't primarily read books by female authors. Since I'm a huge fan of challenges that I can complete without actually working to hard, it's another one I've taken part in for the last few years. I read a lot of female authors and therefore set myself the level Wonder Woman - to read 20+ books by female authors. Even if I've read multiple books by some authoresses, I've only allowed myself to count one book per person. I'd completed my initial challenge goal by the end of April, and read books by 81 different female authors this year.

11. The 2016 New Author Challenge, hosted by Literary Escapism, was in its eight year in 2016 and I signed up to discover at least 25 new authors in 2016. I'd completed that challenge by mid-July and ended up nearly doubling my goal, reading books by 49 different new authors over the course of the year.

12. The 2016 New to You Challenge, hosted by The Herd Presents, allows for some crossover with the previous challenge mentioned, as anything new to me - be it an author, a series, a genre all count. I signed up for 50 "new to me" things, and completed that goal in mid-September. In the end, there were 65 "new to me" entries on my list by the end of December.

13. The 2016 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge, once again hosted by Passages to the Past, is one I also enjoy, because I love reading historical novels. As always, I signed up for the highest level, "Prehistoric", with 50+ books and completed my goal by mid-November. My final tally for this challenge was 63 books.

14. The Pick Your Genre Challenge, also hosted by The Herd Presents, allows the reader to pretty much design their own reading challenge. I set myself romance as a genre (of any kind) and read a total of 90 books that would qualify because of a central romance plot or very strong romantic elements as part of the story.

15. The 2016 Diverse Reads Challenge, hosted by Chasing Faerietales, doesn't have any set reading levels. They just want you to read diverse books, with main characters including but not limited to LGBTQIA, persons of colour, gender diversity, people with disability (including physical, sensory, cognitive, intellectual or developmental; chronic conditions, mental illnesses and addiction) and ethnic, cultural and religious minorities. I set myself a personal goal of at least 30 books, which I'd managed to complete by the end of July. In the end, I'm proud to say that I read 52 books that qualify for this challenge, and I should really try to match that number in 2017.

16. What's in a Name 2016, hosted by The Worm Hole is a fairly small challenge, which I completely failed at. Despite the challenge only requiring you to read six books in total, the categories this year were such that I just never felt particularly inspired, and in the end, just gave up on it. I only read two out of the six required books, but the categories for 2017 look more doable, so I will sign up for this one again, to hopefully complete it this time.

17. The 2016 Literary Pickers Challenge, hosted by Delighted Reader is a new one for me this year, a literary scavenger hunt. There's a list of 100 different items to be found in romances (or books with a strong romance element) and I thought it looked like fun. I signed up for level 2, "Garage Sale Guru" (25 items) and had managed to find that many by the end of August, abouts. In the end, I managed to "find" 43 out of the 100 items. I suspect this challenge will require its own round-up post, as just linking to my Goodreads shelf won't actually say what item matches which book in the challenge.

18. The R.I.P (Readers Imbibing Peril) XI Challenge takes place only in September and October and encourages readers to read books in the mystery, suspense, thriller, gothic, horror and dark fantasy genres. I read my seven books fairly quickly and always enjoy this one.

18. I mustn't forget the Goodreads Reading Challenge for 2016 either. I always set my reading goal to 104 books (basically a double Cannonball), but obviously hope to read a lot more. With re-reads and the like, I have read a total of 147 books this year, says the tally.

19. My final challenge of the year was the Reading Challenge Addict where I signed up for "Out of this World", 16+ Reading Challenges entered and completed. For the first year in a long time, there are two that I didn't manage to complete, but the benefit of taking part in such a ridiculous amount of challenges is that I still managed to hit my target for this one (but only just).

I also took part in the October Read-a-thon, but am at a loss to remember why I couldn't do the one in April. I keep saying that I want to reduce the number of challenges I do, but then the end of the reading year finds me discovering all these tempting new ones (or just wanting to repeat the ones that have worked for me for years). I need a day or two to ponder what I want to do with reading year in 2017.

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