As we’ve reviewed earlier this year, I did *complete* both the Classics Challenge and the What’s in a Name? Challenge, both with relative and unexpected ease. The Where Are You Reading? Challenge has been most interesting, and I’ve enjoyed keeping track of where all the books I read are set. Click on my map below to see my notes.
A month or so ago I realized I was going to have to start making special efforts to read books that cover certain locations. I’ve done some of that. Some of those books have been good, too; but some of them I’ve been only half-heartedly interested in, and haven’t impressed me.
So, I’m giving up. My review of Love Medicine is still to come, filling out North Dakota (and that was a very enjoyable book!). But aside from that, I’m done chasing states. I have to prioritize. Mostly I like to read what I like to read – whatever I feel like at the moment; or whatever I’ve been looking forward to or planning on or been interested in lately. And then there are the books I’m sent for review, which are in theory skewed to my interests – and in practice, too, my editor at Shelf Awareness does an awesome job of sending me good stuff! And sometimes I undertake to read books I might not like, in the interests of expanding my knowledge of what my patrons at the library are reading. On top of all this, to read books based on location for this challenge has turned out to be more burden than fun. This blog is for fun and enrichment and is not intended to be a source of burdens! So, I’m done with the challenge.
But I have no regrets. It’s been not only fun but and interesting and informative to see where I read. And I didn’t do too poorly! So far, I’ve read in 35 of the 50 states, and 24 foreign locations. You never know, I might even find myself reading something set in Rhode Island by the end of the year. But I doubt that it will be on purpose. Then again, 59 unique locations (35 + 24) isn’t so hot considering I’ve read well over 100 books this year so far. It was interesting to see how many of the books I read are set in a few big US cities (Los Angeles, Chicago, NYC), Texas, and London (or England generally).
2011 has been my first full year of blogging. (I started in October 2010.) This was my first year joining challenges. It was fun; it made the blogging experience more interactive, for one thing, and made reading kind of playful and purposeful. I like challenges, and I’ll sign up for more again. I just want to be careful not to find any extra stress where I don’t need it! Also, let me mention the readalongs – those have been so great, too! First I did the Mad for Maisie Readalong, of the entire Maisie Dobbs series. (Recommended!) Next was the Great Gone With the Wind Readalong, which was educational and fun. And because that one went so well, I’ve just signed up for the Their Eyes Were Watching God Readalong, hosted by The Heroine’s Bookshelf as was the Gone With the Wind one.
So, today’s challenge update in a nutshell: great fun, challenges! But, uncle!