2015 Reading Challenge

I’ve never felt the need to participate in a reading challenge before. I always figured that these challenges were for people who weren’t reading enough, and I’ve never had that problem thanks to my overflowing bookshelves. My library reflects my literary comfort zone – it’s largely filled with children’s books and non-fiction. But 2015 is the year I want to step out of my reading comfort zone a bit and explore new genres. Inspired by the Book Riot Read Harder challenge as well as a few tips from this post, I’ve put together a list of my reading goals for the year. I may add more if I come across/think of any. One of my general goals for 2015 will be to make a dent in the 100+ unread books I already own. I have a bunch of titles I can’t wait to read, but they keep getting buried under the piles of new books I’m constantly buying. In fact I’m hoping to hold back on buying new books for as long as my willpower allows. Keeping in mind that this resolution has hopelessly crumbled in the past, I’ll have to take it one week at a time.

MY 2015 READING CHALLENGE


1) One children’s book by an Indian author every month: I read many children’s books but I’ve realised that most of them aren’t by Indian authors. So discovering new children’s books by Indian authors is going to be a conscious effort.

JANUARY

SuperZero by Jane DeSuza

FEBRUARY

Raja Raja and the Swapped Sacks by Natasha Sharma

Being Boys by Various Authors

MARCH

The Mystery of the Silk Umbrella by Asha Nehemiah

Re-read Vanamala and the Cephalopod by Shalini Srinivasan

APRIL

Bookasura: The Adventures of Bala and the Book-Eating Monster by Arundhati Venkatesh

Girls to the Rescue by Sowmya Rajendran

2) A collection of poetry: Children’s poetry doesn’t count because that falls well within my comfort zone.

3) A collection of short stories: I’ve never really been into short stories. But I read a few last year and enjoyed them, so I hope to continue the trend.

Breaking the Bow: Speculative Fiction Inspired by the Ramayana by Various Authors

4) A book by or about someone that identifies as LGBTQ: I have never gravitated towards this in my literary selections, but it sounds interesting.

5) A book by an African author: I read A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali by Gil Courtemanche last year, a book set in the background of the Rwandan genocide. The chronicling of the gruesome historic events left me horrified. At the same time I realised how little I know about Africa. This goal is an effort to remedy that lack of knowledge.

6) A Young Adult book: I’ve read a few YA books in the past, but it’s never been a genre I’ve found myself entirely comfortable in. But I do want to seek out more.

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

7) A science-fiction book: Another genre I can’t wait to explore. The two Kurt Vonnegut books on my shelf are calling out to me.

8) A romance novel: Usually a genre I don’t even glance at. Far, far, faaaar out of my comfort zone, but who knows what I’ll find?

9) A book by an Indian author: I’ve been unnecessarily unfair to Indian authors (children’s books excluded), and want to read more (or even some!) Indian fiction.

Breaking the Bow: Speculative Fiction Inspired by the Ramayana by Various Authors

10) A National Book Award/Booker/Pulitzer Prize winner: It never hurts to read what a panel of judges recommends, I suppose.

11) A retelling of a classic: I love classic narratives (particularly fairy tales) with a twist and I can already think of a few I’d like to read.

Breaking the Bow: Speculative Fiction Inspired by the Ramayana by Various Authors

12) A graphic novel: This is the year I’m finally going to read one and see what the fuss is all about.

13) A book published in 2015: This goal doesn’t seem particularly challenging unless you go through the list of books I’ve read. I almost never read books that were published in the same year. I usually buy used books, and the new ones I do buy end up belonging to past years.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

14) A book published in the 1800s: Project Gutenberg and Open Culture to the rescue!

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

15) A book published in the early 1900s: Ditto.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

16) A self-improvement book: Egad! But I’m in the deep end of the pool now and committed to it.

17) A feminist book: Not necessarily one expounding feminist theories, but feminist-oriented, yes.

18) 10 books from my Goodreads To-Read list: I can’t keep adding new books to the list without checking off any! The balance in the universe needs to be restored! (Or at least chipped away at, considering the list currently stands at 1005 books.)

Oliver by Birgitta Sif

Who Could It Be At This Hour? by Lemony Snicket

My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

Round Ireland with a Fridge by Tony Hawks

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal by Mary Roach

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?: (And other concerns) by Mindy Kaling

The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy

19) Six classic books: I’m spectacularly behind on my classics. I did make a bit of an effort last year, but this – one every two months – seems like an achievable goal.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

20) A book in another language: I definitely want to read something in Hindi or Marathi, even though I’m just about fluent in both languages. This will be a tough one, so I’m hoping to stick to short stories or poetry. Maybe a really simple novella will work too.

21) A horror book: I generally avoid scary movies and I don’t remember seeking out books to scare me silly. It seems like an interesting experiment.

22) A contemporary eBook: Thanks to Project Gutenberg and Open Culture, the only eBooks I end up reading don’t belong to this century.

23) A mystery book: I’ve grown up with the Famous Five and Secret Seven series of course but I’m thinking along the lines of a crackling mystery for adults.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

24) A book recommended by a friend: I usually get my book recommendations off the internet (newsletters, blogs and suchlike). So I’d like to read something a friend enjoyed.

25) A book that was originally in another language: Marquez or Murakami perhaps?

26) A banned book: I’m sure I’ve read plenty, but I’d like to research which books have been banned throughout history and why.

27) An audio book: My favourite audio books last year were, unsurprisingly, the Harry Potter series. Currently, I’m binge-listening to podcasts during my commute to and from work. But I’d like to leave room for another audio book or two too.

28) Russian authors: Expand my knowledge about even one of the much-celebrated Russian authors and actually read one of their books.

2 thoughts on “2015 Reading Challenge

  1. Pingback: 2015 Reading Challenge – January Update | Bookworm Etc.

  2. Pingback: 2015 Reading Challenge – February Update | Bookworm Etcetera

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