2016 Reading Challenge

If you follow this blog, you know that I read.

reading-icarlyA lot.

I have love affairs with books.  I have fallen asleep clutching them to my chest like they’re a hard, rectangular teddy bear.  I get so involved in audio books that my husband bought a bluetooth shower speaker for me to hook my phone up to.  Books are ways to live many lives within just one, and I can’t get enough of them.


This year, as of writing this blog post, I’ve read 116 books, which makes it my top year as far as number of books, since I started keeping track with the GoodReads challenges challengesa few years ago.  Not, however, my top year as far as pages read, as many of my books this year were short, which is a whole nother issue.  They need a pages challenge there, too.  Are you listening, GoodReads??

I really enjoy the challenge format as it pushes me to read, and lets me set my own goals, which vary depending on what I have going on during the year.  I had originally set my goal for 2015 as 50 books.  I wasn’t sure I’d even meet that at the start of the year, because my reading time was scant, but after our adoption disruption, time opened up significantly, and I edited my goal accordingly.

I filled up much of that time with books, which has been wonderful, but lately I’ve felt like I was getting into a bit of a rut, and started looking around at various reading challenges.  There are tons of them out there, from the “Read Harder” challenge on BookRiot, to the Rory Gilmore challenge for fans of the Gilmore GIrls, to PopSugar’s “Ultimate Challenge.”  They all have merit, and they are all interesting, and any of them might expand my reading horizons.  I like to push myself beyond the ordinary, which is part of why I joined a Book Club some 7 years ago now, because it got me reading books I might not pick up on my own.

That’s when it hit me; I also adore the social aspect of talking about books, and while I don’t really have the time or social energy to join another real time group, there was likely one on GoodReads just for that.

I was right.

There were a bunch, and I chose one that had, it seemed to me, the most interesting list for their 2016 challenge.  It had items that interested me and left me a lot of freedom to choose my own books as well, as it will probably only take up half of my books for the year.  It’s kind of like reading Yahtzee – do I choose this book for my South American author slot or for my fantasy slot?  I also am going to need LOTS more wild card slots.


Want to join me?  Grab the list below and fill in the blanks as you go.  I’ll be reposting this list every month (with my updates) in 2016 until I’ve finished it.  If you’re a GoodReads member, join the group linked above, too!  I’m excited to get started with my 2016 reads, though reviews from 2016 won’t start showing up til February as I still have a bunch of 2015 reviews waiting for publishing.


The Categories

Read a book that takes place on each continent, or is written by an author from that continent (fiction or non-fiction)

1. North America
2. South America
3. Africa
4. Antarctica
5. Europe
6. Asia
7. Australia

8. A banned or challenged book
9. An award winning book (Pulitzer, Hugo, Man Booker, etc.)
10. Memoir/Autobiography/Biography
11. A dead author’s last book
12. A book with LGBT matter or character(s)
13. A book your favorite author loves
14. A retold fairytale
15. A Young Adult book
16. A history book (fiction or non-fiction)
17. A book where you have seen the movie, but not read the book
18. A book from the NYT Bestseller list
19. A book with the point of view of an immigrant
20. A controversial book
21. The first book you see when you walk into a library or bookstore
22. A classic
23. A debut novel
24. Published this year (2016)
25. Based entirely on the cover
26. Own but never read
27. A book by an author you never read before
28. A book recommended to you by a friendly librarian
29. A book by a Nobel Prize winner
30. Mythology (not just Greek)
31. A book written by someone born the same year as you
32. Dystopia
33. Reread of a favorite book
34. A book about books
35. Book published the year you graduated high school
36. A book a child/teen/someone younger than you loves
37. A book about/set by the sea
38. A book with two authors
39. Author from your own state, province, or country
40. A book about a trip (road, cruise, around the world)
41. A book with the name of a person in the title
42. Science Fiction
43. Fantasy
44. Wild card
45. Wild card
46. Wild card
47. Wild card
48. Wild card
49. Wild card
50. Wild card
51. Wild card
52. Wild card

4 Comments for “2016 Reading Challenge”

Patt O'Connor


Interesting challenge, but I doubt I could complete it! I’ll have to check out some of the others!

Katie Kenig


Some of the others are even longer! In that particular group on GoodReads it’s a two tier challenge, with the lower tier being 36 books. And heck, remember that you can choose books that are 200 pages, not all have to be 600 – 700 or anything! But there are other, smaller challenge groups on the site as well, with 24 books or so.

Samantha Adkins


Well done Katie! I read a whopping 26 books, so you are way ahead of me and I think that puts me out of the 52 book challenge, but good luck. Go Katie Go!

Katie Kenig


26 is awesome considering how much you had going on this year – working, moving, writing, the kids, etc!!! There are shorter challenges, too, if you’re looking. I liked that this one would push me out of my comfort zone a bit with some stuff I might not think of looking for in a book. You can always pick and choose just 15 – 20 of the categories to try! But I’m hoping to make it all the way through. 🙂 It helps that I listen to audiobooks almost constantly, LOL.