Monday, May 28, 2007

UPDATE: challenges

There seems to be a big bunch of new challenges starting on June 1st, so I have been putting a burn on to finish up some old challenges. The new, shiny challenges look like more fun, so I don't want to have these hanging over my head.

Spring Reading Thing: I completed a good bunch of books I had been wanting to read.

1. Reef by Romesh Gunesekera (completed March 24, 2007)

2. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler (completed March 25, 2007)

3. A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (completed March 29,2007)

4. History of the World in 10.5 Chapters by Julian Barnes (completed April 6, 2007)

5. The Virgin Suicides by Jeffery Eugenides (completed April 13, 2007)

6. His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman
book 1 The Golden Compass (completed April 26, 2007)
book 2 The Subtle Knife (completed April 29, 2007)
book 3 The Amber Spyglass (completed May 22, 2007)

Other than The Virgin Suicides, I really liked them all. They were an assortment of genres and styles, but I like a variety of topics and styles. I did this challenge, because I really liked the button. Challenge planners: never underestimate the power of a pretty button!

Once Upon a Time Challenge :

I really wasn't sure about this one, mostly because I don't read a lot of this type of book. However, once I was committed to reading His Dark Materials, it seemed a natural to add a few more and get another button! This helped me get a few books on my list of books from 50_books at livejournal:

  1. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

  2. The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

  3. The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman

  4. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

  5. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

  6. Coraline by Neil Gaiman

I think I picked the cream of the crop in this genre of fantasy and folklore. I read American Gods, also by Gaiman just before this challenge started. It was also excellent.

The Chunkster Challenge, along with the Winter Classics, started all this madness for me. I didn't even really blog about the Classics Challenge. The Chunkster was a real challenge for me, because I signed up before all the other fun challenges began, so this one got adapted, a bit. I read:

  1. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  2. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
  3. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult (will be finished in days - I can't put it down!)

I listed 4 books and hoped to finish 2 of them. Three definately got done. I have some guilt about using His Dark Materials Books for so many challenges. This is how I justify it: I had five other books listed for the Spring Reading Thing, and could have left these off and felt quite accomplished. So if I pretend I used his Dark Materials book 1 and 2 for the Once Upon a Time Challenge and then the third book, which was a Chunkster, over 500 pages, it could have been a chunkster. Then things look more balanced to me and still accomplished. I'm never too clear how 'carved in stone' some of these challenges are. I completed what I said,and also the spirit of the challenges.

Now, bring on

  • Nonfiction 5 (one per month)
  • Summer Reading Challenge Round 2
  • Summer Mystery Reading Challenge
  • Southern Reading Challenge

I'll post another update on these newer challenges later.