Francie’s 2016 Reading Challenge


Anyone who knows me well knows of my love of reading. I can’t help it. It’s ingrained in my body and soul to spend time with my nose in a book…as often as I can.

My mother raised me to read. When I was very young, she taught me to read by underlining words in the books she read to me. I have vivid memories of seeing the words THE and AND underlined with ink. They stared at me from the page, mystical symbols that – when spoken – became words. It was a form of music. The love affair between the English language and I started at or before age 3 and has only grown stronger over time, thanks to my loving mother.

This year, on January 1, I did the usual thing. I laid out some goals for myself. Not resolutions. Just goals. There were only three. One of them was to read more.

Facebook has until now consumed most of my free time. Until recently, I would lie down on the bed in the evenings and scroll to my heart’s content, reading all the posts and looking at pictures and before I knew it, it was bedtime.

Before I got my first smartphone, I read at least 50 books a year. That may not sound like a lot, but for someone who also works full-time for a living, knits, crochets, travels, hangs out with friends, plays instruments, makes art, stargazes, creates jewelry – among other things – I’d say that’s a lot.

Since the smartphone came into my life, I’ve been doing good to complete roughly a dozen a year.

Yes, a dozen. That is pathetic. I’m embarrassed to even admit this.

Since I’ve decided to put FB away and concentrate on this new blog, I know that I can accomplish this one of my big three goals for 2016.

On FB a few weeks ago, I saw this 2016 Reading Challenge floating about in my newsfeed. Hmm, a reading challenge. As someone who likes to challenge herself on a daily basis, I figured I’d give this a shot.

I gathered up the books I already own that made it to the list and inserted a photo above. (Seems like I have a preference for Signet Classics, huh?)

Here is the list of books I plan to read during 2016:

  • A book published this year:
    • (I need to figure out what’s out there so far this year…to be determined)
  • A book I can finish in one day:
    • The Harvest Gypsies – John Steinbeck
  • A book I’ve been meaning to read:
    • This Cold Heaven – Gretel EhrlichFINISHED!
  • A book recommended by a library or bookseller:
    • Resisting Sherman – F.M. Robertson
  • A book I should have read in school:
    • Anne of Green Gables – Lucy Maud Montgomery
  • A book chosen by someone:
    • The Martian – Andy Weir
  • A book published before I was born:
    • Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl – Harriet Jacobs
  • A book banned at some point:
    • Uncle Tom’s Cabin – Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • A book previously abandoned:
    • Les Miserables – Victor Hugo
  • A book I own but have never read:
    • Don Quixote – Cervantes
  • A book I’ve been intimidated by:
    • Catch-22 – Joseph Heller
  • A book I’ve already read once:
    • Weetzie Bat – Francesca Lia Block

Oh, to pick only 12 books out of gazillions of titles was difficult, but I like the specific parameters set for each choice. I admit that a few of these books are slim but, knowing me and my pre-smartphone self, I will be reading more than just these 12 books this year.

Heck, it’s February 8 and I’ve already got 8 under my belt. One of those is on the reading challenge list. Yay me! LOL

In the future, I may do a short book review of each of these titles, if the spirit moves me to. In fact, I might write a little about the book “This Cold Heaven” by Gretel Ehrlich. It’s been a week since I finished it and the ice is still in my soul. (The book is about one woman’s love of Greenland, and the seven seasons she spent on that frozen land.)

Does this challenge interest you? If so, give it some thought and see what you come up with for your own list. Share your picks. I’d love to see what you choose to spend time with over the course of the year.

Till next time, happy reading!



6 thoughts on “Francie’s 2016 Reading Challenge

  1. I have a similar problem with my smart phone replacing the books I would normally read throughout the year, and would also like to change that aspect of my life.. I like the way that you made this challenge a little more than just “read x amount of books”. I like the idea of putting those extra goals in the challenge, I bet it helps with reading a different variety of books. I especially like the book that I own that I’ve never read and the previously abandoned categories.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the variety of books in the challenge was exciting. I had to give some serious thought to the challenge and that alone was a good exercise in stretching oneself. The abandoned book made me realize that before I totally turn away a book, I should give it a second try. Can’t wait to see how I feel about it on a second go-round. Happy reading, and thank you for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

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