Semi Charmed Winter 2016 Book Challenge

Well, after I finished my GoodReads challenge it was only a matter of time before I signed up to a new one*. I spotted Karen over at RunWright was doing Megan’s Semi Charmed Winter 2016 Book Challenge and the categories were so inspiring I just had to take it on. The rules (copied from Megan’s blog) are as follows:

  • The challenge will run from November 1, 2016, to January 31, 2017. No books started before 12 a.m. on November 1 or finished after 11:59 p.m. on January 31 will count.
  • Each book must be at least 150 pages long. Audiobooks and large-print books are fine, as long as the regular print version meets the length requirement.
  • A book can only be used for one category, and each category can only be completed once.
  • The highest possible total is 200 points, and the first five people who finish the challenge will be invited to contribute a category for the summer 2017 challenge.
  • Have fun! Read some books you might not have read otherwise. Discover new authors and make new bookworm friends. (Yes, these are the most important rules!)

And the categories:

  1. 5 points: Freebie! Read any book that is at least 150 pages long.
  2. 10 points: Read a 2016 finalist (longlist or shortlist) for one of the following literary prizes:National Book Award, Man Booker or Man Booker International.
  3. 10 points: Read a brand-new release (something published between November 1, 2016, and January 31, 2017).
  4. 15 points: Read a book by an author of a different race or religion than you.
  5. 15 points: Read a book featuring a main character who is of a different race or religion than you.
  6. 20 points: Read a modern retelling of a classic (e.g. an Austen Project novel, Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler, etc.)
  7. 25 points: Read a book with an alcoholic beverage (neat or cocktail) in the title.
  8. 30 points: Read a book with a character that shares your first or last name. (Alternate spellings are okay, e.g. Megan and Meghan or Smith and Smyth.)
  9. 30 points: Read two books: a nonfiction book and a fiction book with which it connects. For example: A is for Arsenic: The Poisons of Agatha Christie and one of Christie‘s mystery novels that features poison, or The Monuments Men and All the Light We Cannot See. The possibilities are endless, so have fun with this one!
  10. 40 points: Read two books: one by an author whose first name is the same as the last name of the author of the other book. For example: You may read a book by Martin Cruz Smith and a book by George R.R. Martin, or a book by James Joyce and a book by Joyce Carol Oates. The shared name must be spelled exactly the same, no variations.

See what I mean? I could never have resisted trying this one. So, here’s the list of what I plan to read

Reading list!
  1. The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch by Philip K Dick
  2. The Vegetarian by Han Kang**
  3. Lift and Separate by Marilyn Simon Rothestein
  4. Beloved by Toni Morrison
  5. Ruby by Cynthia Bond
  6. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame Smith
  7. The Double Helix by James Watson (if that’s not the name of a cocktail I’ll invent one for it personally)
  8. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
  9. In Search of Time by Dan Falk** and A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
  10. Schindler’s Ark by Thomas Keneally and Going Out by Scarlett Thomas

Ok, so there’s one on this list that I can’t choose yet and one that I simply can’t decide on, but I think it looks like fun overall. I tend to change my mind a lot about the books I intend to read next, so obviously I reserve the right to find a different text to meet the criteria whenever I please but otherwise I’m going to go for it. Incidentally, if anyone has any suggestions for any of the categories I’m up for hearing them.

Does anyone else feel like joining in? Are you doing any other reading challenges at the moment? Let me know!

*Those paying attention will notice I also have a small badge in my sidebar indicating that I’m doing a non-fiction book challenge this year. I have completed it but I’m keeping the badge in case I manage to read enough books to push me into the category beyond the one I initially set myself.

**Yep, I did end up changing my mind about a couple of books. Bound to happen.

21 thoughts on “Semi Charmed Winter 2016 Book Challenge

  1. Yeah for you joining into the challenge. Double yeah for you reading Toni Morrison’s Beloved. I just finished it a few days ago and LOVED it. I look forward to chatting with you about it when you’re done, or even as you read it.
    Suggestions for category 10 – John and Gregory and Martin are very common first and last names. I used Maria Elena John and John Green and I notice you’re also using someone with last name Dick in category 1, that would have been a good name for finding an author with first name Dick, just in case you want to change your pick for category 1 and move that book to #10.
    Options, options.
    But I’m so happy you joined the challenge. I’m also doing the Non Fiction challenge which I think I got from your blog. My goal was 50 NF books this year but I’m lagging behind a little.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am especially excited about reading Beloved! Its been on my to read list for ages and I picked up a copy not long ago 🙂
      Good ideas for the category 10. That one had me pretty stumped. Perhaps it’s good to leave one a bit vague for a while though, gives me chance to adjust my plans if necessary.
      You are speeding way ahead of me on the NF! I think I’ve read about 10 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Absolutely leave some freedom in the TBR. I often end up changing up a couple of books too. Sometimes because I just can’t get the book I want from the library or I no longer want to read something I had chosen.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m impressed that you can contemplate reading so much in so little time! I suppose you have a commute now. And lucky you being called Rebecca – I’m not sure I’d find that bit terribly easy. Rebecca is a book I’ve read several times and feel differently about on each reading.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My commute is making a huge difference to how much I’m getting to read and I’m really appreciating that, although I also anticipate having some time to read over Christmas.
      Didn’t Frank L Baum write a book called Anabel?


    1. I haven’t read much of his before either to be honest. I recommend The Ocean at the End of the Lane as an introduction (I’ll decide if I like Stardust in a few weeks!) Thanks for hosting 🙂


    1. Yeah, I did think about that and how my background would contrast to someone else’s. Surely there must be hundreds of thousands of options but only twenty of them known to a western audience.


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