04 January, 2016

Where did I end with the 2015 Read Harder challenge?

A book written by someone when they were under the age of 25 - Never finished this! Please provide any recommendations below for 2016, as I had some troubles finding authors' works published this early that I haven't already read.

A book written by someone when they were over the age of 65 - M Train by Patti Smith! Fabulous, fabulous and quite different from Just Kids, which is also one of my favorites.

A collection of short stories (either by one person or an anthology by many people) - Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace by Ann Lamott

A book published by an indie press - Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli (Pantheon = indie imprint of Knopf.

A book by or about someone that identifies as LGBTQ - Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel

A book by a person whose gender is different from your own - The Divide: American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap by Matt Taibi

A book that takes place in Asia  - The Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri

A book by an author from Africa - I failed this one big time, especially since I've had Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie's books on my TBR for a few years now. Will be pulling them to the top for this year, and I'd also like to read The Fisherman, and other books. Please leave any recommendations below!

A book that is by or about someone from an indigenous culture (Native Americans, Aboriginals, etc.) - This one was also a miss in the end. I had hoped to see if I read diversely without categorizing, but it looks like when it comes to cultural and ethnic diversity, I am not way up there within these conditions. As mentioned above, please leave recommendations below!

A microhistory - Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer

A YA novel - Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce

A sci-fi novel - The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber

A romance novel - Together Tea by Marjan Kamali. This isn't your typical romance novel, but it was stellar and unexpectedly so, for me, given that I kind of judged the book by its cover. I highly recommend this book.

A National Book Award, Man Booker Prize or Pulitzer Prize winner from the last decade - George F. Kennan: An American Life by John Lewis Gaddis

A book that is a retelling of a classic story (fairytale, Shakespearian play, classic novel, etc.) - Castle Waiting, Vol. 1 by Linda Medley

An audiobook - The Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb

A collection of poetry - 100 Poems by Jen Campbell

A book that someone else has recommended to you - Wild by Cheryl Strayed

A book that was originally published in another language - Embroideries by Marjane Satrapi translated from the Persian

A graphic novel, a graphic memoir or a collection of comics of any kind (Hi, have you met Panels?)
 - Ms. Marvel, Vol. 2: Generation Why? by G. Willow Wilson

A book that you would consider a guilty pleasure (Read, and then realize that good entertainment is nothing to feel guilty over) - The Last Summer (of You and Me) by Ann Brashares

A book published before 1850 - The Frogs by Aristophanes

A book published this year - Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

A self-improvement book (can be traditionally or non-traditionally considered “self-improvement") - The Unapologetic Fat Girl's Guide to Exercise and Other Incendiary Acts by Hanne Blank

So, overall I missed three of the challenges, and I didn't even really try. I wanted to use this year to see how diversely I could read if I just read what interested me. Here are a few more stats for you guys:

32/47 books, or about 68% were written by women.

4/47, or 8% had LGBTQ+ themes (this is definitely an area where I could branch out, and would love some recommendations). 

13/47, or 27% were nonfiction.

15/47 were written by authors who aren't/weren't from the U.S. (32%).

4/47 were written by someone who isn't white (8%). This one I take as a real challenge for this year. I need to broaden my reading culturally and ethnically. A few of the books I've listed on my #TBRTakedown should help with this a bit, but it's one of my biggest areas of improvement in terms of diverse reading.

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