Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

2021 Reading Challenges from The Book Girls' Guide

 I know, I have signed up for enough challenges, but I found two more on Facebook that I thought looked interesting.  They are the Decades Challenge and Book Voyage: Read Around the World.  These challenges come with suggested reads for each prompt, which I like as it gets me out of my comfort zone and I discover more that I enjoy.


Each month, you’ll read a book SET in a different decade, in chronological order. The book doesn’t have to be written during the decade, just take place during it.    You can find a list for each of the decades here.  

January - 1910's

February - 1920's

March - 1930's

April - 1940's

May - 1950's

June - 1960's

July - 1970's

August - 1980's

September - 1990's

October - 2000's

November - 2010's

December - Books spanning multiple decades





The second challenge is Book Voyage: Read Around the World. The reading schedule for the year is below - along with a link for book suggestions for the first month.  When you sign up they will send you a link for a fun map that will help you track your books. 

January: Arctic & Antarctic
February: Europe – West
March: Europe – East
April: Asia – North
May: Asia – South
June: Books Set on an Island
July: Australia & New Zealand
August: Middle East
September: Africa
October: South America
November: North America
December: Books Spanning Multiple Continents

Sunday, January 10, 2021

2021 Literary Feast Reading Challenge

 Ok, so I found one more reading challenge on Facebook - so why not, right?  It is called the Literary Feast Reading Challenge and the prompts are as follows:

Thought it might be fun to have some of my own reads mixed in with some group reads.

January: a book with a cover that's your favorite color
February: a book based on a myth or fairytale
(Group reading challenge! Watch for upcoming posts as we choose the book and discuss it!)
March: biography, autobiography, or memoir
April: a book from a series
(but you don't have to choose the first book or read the entire series!)
May: a cross- or dual-genre book
(Group reading challenge! We'll be digging up those sci-fi comedies or steampunk westerns special for the month of May! In fact, if we pick the steampunk western it might end up being a duel-genre. 😉 )
June: a book by an indie or local author
(It'll be your chance to read local and support the self-publishing community!)
July: a book you never thought you'd read
August: a book you can read in a day
(Group reading challenge! Not that you have to read it in a day. But if you could... And with a short book, you could pick more than one this month!)
September: a banned book (September is Banned Book Month.)
October: a book with 300+ pages (bonus if it's 500+!)
(to make up for August's short book... 😉 )
November: a classic
(Group reading challenge. Which classic have you always wanted to read but haven't? Or is there a classic you've been longing to read again? Or a book you wish was a classic?)
December: a book written by a celebrity
Bonus! a book set in the ancient past

2021 Strong Women Reading Challenge

 


Somehow I missed blogging about this reading challenge.  I had added it to my spreadsheet, but never left a post about it.  This is the Strong Woman reading challenge.  It runs from January 1 to May 31 and you have to read 5 books to get a Bingo.  It is hosted by Books and Tea.

Created by @tecsielitybooks, @kuudennenkerroksenkirjat, @kirjaperhonen and @sakubooks


THE PROMPTS:

  1. Finnish female author
  2. feminist book
  3. a book with a word that means woman in the title
  4. a memoir
  5. a book about war with female protagonists
  6. comic or graphic novel targeted to girls
  7. crime novel written by a woman
  8. survivor - The Last 8 by Laura Pohl
  9. a female author who uses a pen name
  10. LGBT book
  11. a woman who doesn’t end up with a man at the end
  12. book rec from a woman you’re close to
  13. author of colour
  14. a book about a friendship between women
  15. book where a woman does well in a “man’s world”
  16. a book written by a trans woman
  17. a female author who won an award
  18. sci-fi/fantasy heroine
  19. generational story
  20. a woman who isn’t from the 2000s
  21. a woman who is a mother
  22. book about witches
  23. a book that fails a reverse Bechdel test
  24. a female author who deserves more love
  25. a book for young girls

Book Review: The Last 8 by Laura Pohl

Title: The Last 8

Author: Laura Pohl

Genre: Science Fiction

This is a YA science fiction book about an alien invasion, where, you guessed, 8 teenagers are left alive to try to figure out why this happened and what to do next. 

It is told from the POV of Clover Martinez, a high school junior who dreams of MIT and NASA and flies planes with her Abuelo.  When everyone in her town is killed by the aliens, she sets off across the country with the companionship of a dog that she picks up along the way.  Thinking she is the last person alive, she is shocked when she hears a radio station broadcasting from Area 51 and sets off for Nevada.  Upon arrival, she discovers 7 other teenagers have been living there since the aliens arrived.  

I liked the beginning of the book, it really grabbed me and pulled me in, then I got kind of weighted down in the middle - seem to go on forever before a plan of action was decided upon.  With this one, I could either just be happy with the ending, or read on with the second book - The First 7.  

Friday, January 8, 2021

Book Review: City of a Thousand Dolls

 

Title: City of a Thousand Dolls

Author: Miriam Forster

Genre: Fantasy

My initial thoughts about this book were that I was not going to like it. While the cover was interesting, it didn't really appeal to me.  In addition, there was a list of characters in the front of the book - or Dramatis Personae.  I am always wary of these books that have lists of characters because I am afraid that I will not be invested in the book enough to keep them straight.  And then, when the names of the characters are not what I am used to (like Nisha and Akash tarVey) I think I will have an even harder time.

Fortunately, that did not happen with this book.  I very quickly became invested and loved the relationship that Nisha had with the cats and how they spoke to one another (basically read each other's minds).  They explained to Nisha that they just didn't want to talk to anyone else, but you knew right away that there was a bigger story there.  Through suicides - or was it murders, love, betrayal, guilt, and friendship we learn about Nisha and the role that she plays in the City of Dolls.  A city that was created to take in the unwanted daughters of the Empire.  Unwanted because there was a 2-child ban on the population, and boys were valued more.  

This book was more than just a fantasy though, but also a murder mystery and it was not evident who or why was behind them.  Definitely kept me in the dark until almost the very end.  I really enjoyed it and am glad that I did not let the cover or list of characters put me off from reading it. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

2021 Library Love Reading Challenge

 


The 2021 Library Love Challenge is hosted by Angel's Guilty Pleasures and Books of My Heart.   The challenge is to read books from your library.  Since the majority of my books come from there this was a no-brainer.


Levels are:

  • Dewey Decimal: Read 12 books
  • Thrifty Reader: Read 24 books
  • Overdrive Junkie: Read 36 books
  • Library Addict: Read 48 books
  • Library Card on Fire: Read 60+ books - I am choosing this level!

There will also be quarterly giveaways once you join.

1 - The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver

2 - City of a Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster

3 - The Last 8 by Laura Pohl

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2021 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

 


The 2021 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge is hosted by The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader.


Reading Challenge details

Each month, a new post dedicated to the HF Challenge will be created at the host blog where you can add the links for the books you have read. To participate, you only have to follow the rules:

Everyone can participate! If you don't have a blog you can post a link to your review if it's posted on Goodreads, Facebook, or Amazon, or you can add your book title and thoughts in the comment section if you wish.


Add the link(s) of your review(s) including your name and book title to the Mister Linky we’ll be adding to our monthly post at Intrepid Reader (please use the direct URL that will guide us directly to your review) Any sub-genre of historical fiction is accepted (Historical Romance, Historical Mystery, Historical Fantasy, Young Adult, History/Non-Fiction, etc.)

During the following 12 months you can choose one of the different reading levels:

20th Century Reader - 2 books
Victorian Reader - 5 books
Renaissance Reader - 10 books - I am choosing this level
Medieval - 15 books
Ancient History - 25 books
Prehistoric - 50+ books


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2021 Dystopia Reading Challenge

 


The 2021 Dystopia Reading Challenge is hosted by Brittani @ Game, Read, Teach.  The challenge is to read Dystopian books. Easy Peasy.

Levels are as follows - You will receive a badge based on the level.

Recruit - 1-5 books

Rebel - 6-10 books - I AM CHOOSING THIS LEVEL.

Revolutionist - 11-15

Leader - 16+

1 - The Last 8 by Laura Pohl

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UPDATE SCHEDULE:
  • March 15 - First Quarter Update
  • June 15 - Second Quarter/Mid-Year Update
  • September 15 - Third Quarter Update
  • December 15 - Fourth Quarter Update/Wrap Up

GIVEAWAY SCHEDULE:
  • June - Mid-Challenge Giveaway
  • December - End of Challenge Giveaway
To be entered in the giveaways, you have to link up reviews. Every review you link up equals a giveaway entry. If you happen to get bingo, that counts as an extra entry, up to 5 extra entries if you fill the board! Just let me know when you get a bingo and the extra entry/s will be added!

REVIEW LINK-UPS:
  • January-June Link-Up
  • July-December Link-Up
The Dystopia Reading Challenge has bi-annual link-ups. The first link-up for reviews will be open from January 1-June 30. And the second link-up will be open from July 1-December 31. To be entered in the giveaways, you have to link up reviews. Every review you link up equals a giveaway entry. Review link-ups will be linked in the main menu under Dystopia Reading Challenge for easy finding. :)

LISTS TO GET YOU STARTED:

2021 Cloak and Dagger Reading Challenge

 


The 2021 Cloak and Dagger Reading Challenge is hosted by Carol at Carol's Notebook.  This is a new challenge for me this year.  

The challenge is to read any book that is from the mystery/suspense/thriller/crime genres. Any sub-genres are welcome as long as they incorporate one of the main genres. They also must be at least 100 pages long. 

There will be a monthly link up and giveaways at the halfway point and at the end. 

Levels:

5-15 books – Amateur sleuth

16-25 books – Detective -This is my goal for the year.

26-35 books – Inspector

36 – 55 – Special agent 

56+ books – Sherlock Holmes

1 - The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver

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2021 Literary Escapes Challenge

 


The 2021 Literary Escapes Challenge is hosted by Escape with Dollycas.  The goal is to try to read 1 book set in each of the 50 states + a bonus for the District of Columbia. You can also earn bonus points for books set in countries around the world. You have the option of keeping track on a map or a list - I think the list is easier. 


Alabama

Alaska

Arizona

Arkansas

California - The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver

Colorado

Connecticut

Delaware

District of Columbia

Florida

Georgia

Hawaii

Idaho

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

Minnesota

Mississippi

Missouri

Montana

Nebraska

Nevada - The Last 8 by Laura Pohl

New Hampshire

New Jersey

New Mexico

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota

Tennessee

Texas

Utah

Vermont

Virginia

Washington

West Virginia

Wisconsin

Wyoming

2021 Color Coded Reading Challenge

 


The Color Coded Reading Challenge is once again being hosted by My Reader's Block. It is quite simple - read books with colors in the title or where that color is the dominant color on the cover of the book. 


1. A book with "Blue" or any shade of Blue in the title/on the cover.
2. A book with "Red" or any shade of Red in the title/on the cover.
3. A book with "Yellow" or any shade of Yellow in the title/on the cover.
4. A book with "Green" or any shade of Green in the title/on the cover.
5. A book with "Brown" or any shade of Brown in the title/on the cover.
6. A book with "Black" or any shade of Black in the title/on the cover.
7. A book with "White" or any shade of White in the title/on the cover.
8. A book with any other color in the title/on the cover (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, etc).
9. A book with a word/image that implies color in the title/on the cover (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Shadow, Paint, Ink, etc).

2021 Reading Challenge from Linz the Bookworm

 


This 2021 Reading Challenge is brought to you by Linz the Bookworm


This challenge is either one huge challenge, or five smaller ones.  I prefer to look at it as five smaller ones.  There are five tiers divided into 60 categories. We try to alternate the types in a way that gives a lot of variety and increases in difficulty. Tier one is generally the easier category. You can complete it tier by tier, pick the tiers you want, pick the categories you want, or go about it haphazardly. My path will probably be the haphazardly one. 


Here's a link to a printable list: Printable List


Level 1: Book of the Month Club
1 Read a book obtained from Kindle Unlimited, Audible, Amazon First Reads,  
2 Read a book under 400 pages  
3 Reread a book that makes you happy  
4 Read a stand alone novel (not in a series)
5 Read a book that starts with the letter D
6 Read a book that was recommended to you
7 Read a book with the color white on the cover
8 Read a book where the main character is a High School
or College Student - The Last 8 by Laura Pohl
9 Read a book by an author named Michael/Mike/Michelle or variant
10 Read a book that's been turned into a TV series or Movie
11 Read a book with exactly two words in the title
12 Free Space- Pick any book!
Level 2: Casual Reader Club
13 A book from https://www.whatshouldireadnext.com/
14 Read a Murder Mystery
15 Read the first book in a series you've wanted to
start - The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver
16 Read a book that has a person on the cover
17 Read a book where the main character's occupation is chef or baker
18 Read a book by an author born in the 20th Century (1901-2000)
19 Read a book with a form of royalty in the title
(Queen, King, Prince,Princess, etc)
20 Read a book you meant to read on last year's challenge
21 Read a book by Barbara Cartland
22 Read a book that takes place in Spring
23 Read a book with the word Human/Person/People in the title
24 Free Space- Pick any book!
Level 3: Dedicated Reader Club
25 Read a book by a Self Published Author
26 Read a book for under $5
27 Read a book from : https://time.com/collection/100-best-fantasy-books/
28 Read a book published in the 2010's
29 Read a book from your favorite genre
30 Read a book that has had at least three different covers
31 Read a book that takes place in Europe
32 Read a book by an author with the same first name as
one of your grandparents
33 Read a book where the main character is a magic user
34 Read a book with a time of day in the title
(Morning, Noon, Evening,Dusk, Dawn, etc)
35 Read a book by an author of a different ethnicity than you
36 Free Space- Pick any book!
Level 4: Speed Reader Club
37 Read the next book in a series you've started
38 Read a book with an orange cover
39 Read a book over 600 pages
40 Read a book that uses the "Chosen One" trope
41 Read a book where the main character is elderly
42 Read a book with the letter V in the title or author's name
43 Read a Science Fiction
44 Read a book that starts with the letter P
45 Read a book with a bird on the cover
46 Read a book (Fiction or Nonfiction) about a
lady on this list: https://www.historyextra.com/100-women/100-women-results/
47 Read a book with a main character with a different ethnicity than you
48 Free Space- Pick any book!
Level 5: Overachiever Club
49 Read a book with an interesting cover font
50 Read a book about orphans - City of a Thousand Dolls by Miriam Forster
51 Read a book with the word "wind" in the title
52 Read a book by John Irving
53 Read a book that was published when you were eleven
54 Read a book that takes place in the 1960s
55 Read a book (fiction or Nonfiction) about a
topic that's always interested you, but you haven't read about it yet
56 Read a Nonfiction book that teaches you a new skill
57 Read a book without a picture on the cover
58 Read a book (Fiction or Nonfiction) involving Mental Illness
59 Read a book that has had unfavorable reviews, but you're still curious about
60 Free Space- Pick any book!



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