Tuesday, February 3, 2015

2014 TBR Reading Challenge Forced Unusual Choices

When I accepted Wendy Crutcher's 2014 TBR Challenge way back in December 2013, I warned her then that my goal was simply to use the prod of accountability to read a non-romance (key!) book every month from my TBR bookshelf, i.e., published before 2014, and comment on it on this blog.

At the beginning of every year, I do a detailed analysis post of my reading of the previous year. What I have noticed year after year is how little I read outside the romance genre. So I started using a couple different reading challenges to diversify my reading. I have discovered that I have sloooooowly started making progress in the right direction. This year, I stepped it up and took on Wendy's challenge as further incentive.

Technically, this is way off base, since the challenge is primarily to read broadly in the romance genre. Here were Wendy's categories:

  • Jan 15: We Love Short Shorts! (Short stories, Novellas, category romance)
  • Feb 19: Series Catch-Up (pick a book from a series you're behind on)
  • Mar 19: New-To-You Author (an author you've never read before)
  • Apr 16: Contemporary romance
  • May 21: More Than One (An author who has more than one book in your TBR pile)
  • Jun 18: Romance Classics (classic book, classic author, classic trope/theme, etc.)
  • Jul 16: Lovely RITA (past RITA winners or nominees)
  • Aug 20: Luscious Love Scenes (erotic romance, erotica, a sensual read)
  • Sep 17: Recommended read (a book recommended to you by someone)
  • Oct 15: Paranormal or Romantic Suspense
  • Nov 19: Historical romance
  • Dec 17: Holiday themes (Christmas, Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day, it's all good!)

  • Wendy took pity on me and my ginormous TBR, and voilĂ , here's the list of books I read:

  • "Einstein's Dreams" by Alan Lightman (blog Jan 15)
  • "Women Who Dared" by Evelyn Beilenson & Lois Kaufman (blog Feb 19)
  • "Weathering Winter: A Gardener's Daybook" by Carl Klaus (blog Mar 19)
  • "Pride & Prejudice: the movie adaptation" by Deborah Moggach (blog Apr 16)
  • "The Prophet" by Kahlil Gibran (blog May 21)
  • "The Girls' Book of Wisdom" edited by Catherine Dee (blog Jun 18)
  • "Word Wizard: Super Bloopers, Rich Reflections, and Other Acts of Word Magic" by Richard Lederer (blog Jul 16)
  • "The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion (blog Aug 20)
  • "From Bath With Love" by Bob Croxford (blog Sep 17)
  • "The Titan's Curse" by Rick Riordan (blog Oct 15)
  • "Robert Frost" edited by Gary D. Schmidt (blog Nov 19)
  • "Stradivari's Genius" by Toby Faber (blog Dec 17)


    Wendy said...

    Prior to taking over hosting duties I rarely followed the monthly themes. Sometimes I did, if they tickled my fancy - but mostly I used the challenge as a prod to look at my ginormous TBR pile for a change. So I'm all for people participating and running "off theme" as it were :)

    Keira Soleore said...

    Thank you, Wendy, for allowing me to be an outlier. I'm using it in various different ways to get me out of the romance-only reading rut, and I'm having a ton of fun with it.