My 2016 reading challenge

   Earlier this year I posted this picture on Instagram:

Because I'm a total bookworm and I'd seen lots of other folks doing reading challenges and I thought that this might be somewhat manageable (meaning the list wasn't super long). It would push me to actually seek out books more intentionally than before. Also, I'm a sucker for dares and challenges. Side-effects of being a very competitive person I suppose.

   I kept track of my progress using my instagram and goodreads accounts. I will now attempt to take stock and see how I did.

1. A book published this year
Harry Potter and the cursed child - John Tiffany

A lot of people I know had mixed feelings about this book after all the hype. Personally I'd been waiting for a new Harry Potter book since I finished Deathly Hallows at the age of 17. I loved it, even the script-format. All I can say is: Broaden your horizons and literary palates people!

2. A book you can finish in one day
Shadows on the moon - Zoe Marriot

  I found this book quite by accident when I wandered into a book-store with the intention of 'just-browsing-and-not-really-buying-anything' (Lies I tell myself). The book-store had a sale and I fell in love with this cover and the blurb at the back. So I decided to take a chance on this author I'd never heard about and hope I wouldn't regret the money spent afterwards. My gamble paid off! Think 'Memoirs of a geisha' meets dystopian feudal Japan  featuring African characters who wield prominent positions instead of being mere slaves. Yeah I's out of the box. But boxes tend to get musty and mouldy and oh so common!

3. A book you've been meaning to read / A book recommended by your local librarian or bookseller
The color purple - Alice Walker

Kindly allow me to cheat and include the same book in two categories. It just so happens that I've always been meaning to read the color purple, and the bookseller recommended it to me as I was once again ' just-browsing-and-not-really-buying-anything'.

4. A book you should have read in school
I've got nada. I sort of did more than my share of reading in school :-). But maybe I'll make a point to explore Shakespeare in 2017.

5. A book chosen for you by your spouse, partner, sibling, child or BFF (or friend?)
Eat, pray, Love - Elizabeth Gilbert

 It was a graduation gift from a friend of mine. It's also a book I'd been meaning to read at some point. Interesting take on a lot of things. And now that reminds me that I need to watch the movie. Oh well!

6. A book published before you were born
The chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis

   These books were first published in the 1950s...Yup totally fits the bill. This particular edition is actually the first book I ever bought myself. I keep coming back to these books because let's face it, CS Lewis is a great story-teller. These are the kind of books that are timeless. I still understand the references made despite a 50-year gap between publication and my reading them. I can imagine reading these books to my kids.

7. A book that was banned at some point
La prissoniere - Malika Oufkir

This book was banned in Morocco at some point because it revealed some undesirable things about the then monarch and other prominent people. It was to them what George Orwell's 'Animal Farm' once was to Kenya (Which reminds me to add it to my to-read list).

8. A book you previously abandoned
   I don't have a book that I read after previously abandoning...but I do have a book that I abandoned this year. Officially adding it to the 2017 priority list. The lucky winner is none other than:

Mere Christianity - CS Lewis

Why did I abandon it? I was busy with school. And it's the kind of book that takes a bit of effort to read, unlike the sweep-you-off-your-feet-and-get-you-obsessed stories I usually read. But it's got a good thing going on, which is why I'll come back to it.

9. A book that you own but have never read
That is not how I roll. I've read everything I own...and then some.

10. A book that intimidates you
That would have to be lucky winner no.8. So obviously I can't put it up here properly because I abandoned it. This is my cue to put on my big-girl pants and carpe diem!

11. A book you've already read at least once
Prey - Michael Crichton

   Enter another great love of my life: Science fiction! This guy will forever be one of my favourite authors because he's unpredictable. His books are filled with awkward moments when you think you know what's going on but realise you know nothing actually. So you stop second-guessing and supposing and just settle-in for the ride. And I love that! Being a wide reader I love it when things can still surprise me. Believe me, life gets boring when you can guess the entire book plot after the first 10 or 20 pages!

Well, that was my year in books, how was yours? I'm going to look for a new reading challenge for 2017. I'm determined to top this.

Ciao...and Happy New year folks!:))



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