Thursday, December 15, 2011


One of the best things about book blogging again is participating in reading challenges! Here are a few I'm looking forward to. It worries me that I made lists for all of these without duplicates just from items in my TBR stacks...I clearly have a problem! I highly doubt I will finish all of these, but hopefully this will help me make a dent in my stacks!

Well, since I started blogging again in an attempt to clear of my TBR shelves, it's only fitting that I give Ready When You Are, C.B.'s TBR Double Dare a try. The goal is to read only books from your TBR stacks from Jan. 1 through April 1. I think it's fitting that this ends on April Fool's Day! I don't know if I can resist the library that long. He does offer exceptions for library books you already have checked out before Jan. 1 or have a hold for that haven't come in yet. I will not add books to my hold list like a madwoman. I will not! Hopefully.

Allie at A Literary Odyssey is hosting a Shakespeare Reading Month in January. I finally finished all of Shakespeare's plays last summer in anticipation of my trip to Stratford-Upon-Avon and London. I'd read all the sonnets in college, so I just have his longer poems left and I can then say I've read the complete works of Shakespeare! Very excited about that one.

November's Autumn is hosting A Classics Challenge where you read seven classics and then respond to a prompt on the fourth of each month you're participating in. I'm actually going to try to participate each month because I anticipate I'll be reading a lot of classics because I own a ton of them!

  • A Room with a View
  • Something by Dickens
  • The Red Badge of Courage
  • Howard's End
  • Something by Henry James
  • Something by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Far from the Madding Crowd   
Jean at Howling Frog is hosting a Greek Classics Challenge. I'm hoping this one will help me get to some of the many ancient works on my TBR list! I've read most of the Greek plays I own, so I mainly have philosophy and history works to read, which can be a little intimidating in large doses.
  • Something by Aristophanes
  • Something else by Aristophanes
  • Something by Euripides
  • Something else by Euripides :)
  • The History by Herodotus
  • The History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides
  • The Republic by Plato
  • Something by Aristotle
  • Works by Hippocrates
  • Elements by Euclid
  • Works of Archimedes
  • The Amalgest by Ptolemy
Sarah Reads Too Much is hosting a Back to the Classics Challenge. I'm going to try to not double up between this and the A Classics Challenge or the Chunkster Challenge. It's a good thing I like classics since I've bought so many of them!
  • Any 19th Century Classic - Something by George Eliot
  • Any 20th Century Classic - The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • Reread a classic of your choice - This one will be a surprise treat in the midst of all the craziness! Maybe The Great Gatsby since I'd like to reread it before the movie comes out.
  • A Classic Play - Something by Aristophanes or Euripides
  • Classic Mystery/Horror/Crime Fiction - The Complete Sherlock Holmes Volume I
  • Classic Romance - The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte
  • Read a Classic that has been translated from its original language to your language - To clarify, if your native language is NOT English, you may read any classic originally written in English that has been translated into your native language. - The Stranger by Camus
  • Classic Award Winner - To clarify, the book should be a classic which has won any established literary award. - The Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway
  • Read a Classic set in a Country that you (realistically speaking) will not visit during your lifetime - To Clarify, this does not have to be a country that you hope to visit either. Countries that no longer exist or have never existed count. - Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad - it's mostly in the Indian Ocean and on a fictional island based on Sumatra. Probably not traveling there!
Wendy and Vasily are hosting the Chunkster Challenge again and I'm definitely excited about participating. Again, I'm going to try not to double dip on books for my challenges, but we'll see how that goes. I'm hoping to the Mor-book-ly Obese level, although I'd like to do the Do These Books Make My Butt Look Big? level because it's a funny title. I have to read eight adult books of over 450 pages, with at least three weighing in at over 750 pages. Again, given my proclivity to buy mountains of classics, this shouldn't be hard to find in my TBR stack, although finishing all of them will be a challenge! Too bad I read so much Victorian literature before I went to London; I'd have had even more to choose from!
  • The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas - 1095 pages
  • The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand - 752 pages
  • The Decameron by Boccaccio - 807 pages
  • Don Quixote by Cervantes - 1050 pages
  • War and Peace by Tolstoy - 1296 pages
  • Great American Short Stories from Hawthorne to Hemingway - 536 pages  
  • The Idiot by Fydor Dostoevky - 564 pages  
  • Barchester Towers by Trollope - 560 pages
Finally, Amanda at Fig and Thistle is hosting a Truth in Fiction Challenge where you read and post about pairs of books - one fiction and one non-fiction - about the same topic. I tend to read this way anyway, and I think it would be fun to combine the posts. Here are my ideas for some pairings. I'll hit the PhD level if I actually finish all of these!
  • A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens and Reflections on the Revolution in France by Edmond Burke
  • The Life of Charlotte Bronte by Elizabeth Gaskill and Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
  •  Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe and The Autobiography of Frederick Douglass
  • Shogun and A History of Japan
  • Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton and Edith Wharton by RWB Lewis
  • North and South by John Jakes and Civil War Stories by Webb Garrison
  • Becoming Jane Austen and Jane Fairfax


  1. It has been awhile since you've updated! I'm glad to see you back!

    Glad to hear you're joining us in January for some Shakespeare. :) It is going to be a great month. I'm really excited for it!

    Good luck with all of your challenges! I think you have more than me. ;)

  2. Thanks Allie! I'm glad to be back. I went a little crazy with the challenges and know I want finish all of these, but I've got to try to clear out my insane TBR pile!

  3. Thanks for signing up for the Chunkster Challenge! I signed up for the TBR Dare Challenge too. I really need to clear off some books from my tbr pile. I didn't know that we can place books on hold now for next year! I'm not going to do that because I have a ton of library books out now that I really want to read before January 1st. ;-) Happy reading and good luck on all of your challenges.

  4. Thanks for joining the Back to the Classics Challenge! You and I will be reading some of the same (I also want to reread Gatsby before the movie!) so I will look forward to your thoughts on those. You are quite ambitious with your challenges, but if you have all these titles on your TBR shelf - then why not? Right? Best of luck to you!!

  5. Welcome to the Greek Classics challenge, thanks for joining up! I'm also in several of the other ones you've joined, so it's going to be interesting to see what everyone reads. :)

  6. Good luck in all of your challenges! I'm participating in the TBR Double Dare, Back to the Classics (wish I'd thought of Aristophanes, but I chose A Midsummer Night's Dream for my play), and the Chunkster Challenge (haven't made up my full list for that one yet, but I'm starting with Wolf Hall today!) I think I'm going to check out the Classics Challenge as well, since I'm already personally committed to reading at least one classic a month this year!

  7. Julie - I want to try to read Wolf Hall too. I started it last year and the odd point of view threw me off, and I think I had read too much Tudor stuff and was tired of it at that point. She's got a sequel coming out this spring, so I'm going to try it again!

  8. Great challenges...I only have one but not as impressive as yours. :)

    My favorite classic is REBECCA!! :) I should read more classics.

    Silver's Reviews