I chose a nice mix of reading challenges last year and really enjoyed them. With some, I didn't meet my goals and with others, I far exceeded my goals. A good reading year, in any case! Check out my Top Ten lists of best books I read in 2014.
You can see all the detailed lists of the books I read for each challenge on my 2014 Reading Challenges page, but here is a brief summary:
Big Book Summer Challenge: This was the third year that I hosted my own challenge, Big Book Summer Reading Challenge, and I plan to host it again in the summer of 2015. I love this challenge because it gives me some incentive to finally read the larger books that tend to pile up on my TBR shelves. You can check out my Big Book Summer Wrap-Up post. Here are the 5 Big Books I finished this summer for the challenge:
- Emma by Jane Austen, 487 pages (I had never read a Jane Austen before!)
- The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer, 538 pages
- Good Fortune by Noni Carter, 482 pages
- Unsouled by Neal Schusterman, 404 pages
- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, 771 pages
2014 Audio Book Challenge, hosted by The Book Nympho
In contrast, I rocked this challenge last year! My goal was to listen to 10 -15 audio books in 2014 (Stenographer level), but I ended up listening to a whopping 26 audios! Woohoo! In 2013, I only listened to 14 audio books, so this was a huge improvement. Much of the increase is due to the switch from mostly CD-format audio books to digital downloads. With my iPod and ear buds, I can listen while walking or cooking or doing dishes, etc.
Nonfiction Reading Challenge 2014, hosted by The Introverted Reader
I signed up for Explorer level (6 -10 nonfiction books) and ended up reading 8 in 2014, so mission accomplished! I would still like to read more memoirs because I enjoy them so (and have a bunch collecting dust on my TBR shelves!).
The Classics Reading Challenge 2014, hosted by Thoughts At One in the Morning
I always want to read more classics but have trouble finding the time, so this challenge was right up my alley. I read 4 classics this year. That's not a huge accomplishment, but a couple of them - Emma and Frankenstein - I'd been meaning to read for many years, so I was glad to finally get to them.
- The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
- Emma by Jane Austen
- The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
- Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
Travel the World in Books Challenge, hosted by Mom's Small Victories
Back in September 2014, I added this new challenge which runs through December 2015. My goal was to read 10 books set in other places/cultures, and I have already read these 5, so this one is going well so far:
- The Ghost Bride by Yangsze Choo
- The Thing About Luck by Cynthia Kadohata (immigrants, Japanese culture, transient workers)
- Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (takes place in Switzerland, Germany, France, Russia, and the Arctic)
- Haunters by Thomas Taylor (UK and Switzerland, WWII)
- Hild by Nicola Griffith (England 7th century)
I enjoyed my reading challenges in 2014. Now comes the fun part - choosing new challenges for 2015! I better get moving...
What challenges did you enjoy in 2014 and which ones do you recommend (or host!) for 2015?