Saturday, 7 February 2015

Reading Challenges

If you had met me as a child, the thing I would've told you before anything else is that I loved reading. I had an overflowing bookcase, I'd read everything in my local library and my school library, and I was secretly stealing books that were way too old for me from my parents' room. As I grew older I still loved reading but tended to read the same books over and over and really stayed within my comfort zones (fantasy and crime).

Now, as an adult, I find it more challenging to schedule in reading time (don't we all). Sometimes I hate having a job that requires me to bring paperwork home! And I still find great comfort in reading my favourite books (Harry Potter, I'm looking at you! Seriously, I always just skip to my favourite bits when I need a pick me up or just before I fall asleep). Last year I made it a goal to read at least twelve books that were new to me. And I made it. I read:

1. Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy by Helen Fielding
2. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
3. The Brave by Nicholas Evans
4. Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
5. The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
6. The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
7. Before I go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
8. Enigma by Robert Harris
9. Heaven is Here by Stephanie Nielson
10. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
11. The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
12. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
13. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
14. Unnaturally Green by Felicia Ricci
15. Sail by James Patterson

I think the ones I enjoyed the most were The Cuckoo's Calling and The Silkworm (could this be why?). I really struggled with Enigma as I found it really slow. Although The Shock of the Fall was interesting and an eye opener, I could not wait to get to the end of it. I am proud of myself for reading some books out of my comfort zone and things I would normally have stayed away from!

Books I started and abandoned:
1. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James (just horrific)
2. Divergent by Veronica Roth
3. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (although I have since completed it this year)
4. The Take by Martina Cole (I read the beginning, skipped the middle and read the end)

I've got plenty lined up for this year! I'd like to continue to broaden my horizons and read things I wouldn't normally, as well as reading more of the classics. As mentioned above I already finished Gone Girl. Loaded and ready to go on either my Kindle or my bookshelf are:

1. A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett (almost finished!)
2. Wild: A Journey from Lost to Found by Cheryl Strayed
3. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
4. The Angel's Game by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
5. The Last Testament by Sam Bourne
6. The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
7. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
8. Several Peter James books, courtesy of my father

I think that's plenty to be getting on with! Now to find the time...

What are you currently reading? How do you prioritise reading time?


  1. I always read before bed for 30 minutes to an hour. Right now I am reading book 14 of the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. TOTALLY recommend!! So engaging and good simple reads before before bed.

    PS- I am totally the same about Harry Potter :)

  2. I loved Heaven is Here! Stepanie is such an incredible and inspiring woman. I read her blog before the accident and for years after, though I don't read it much anymore. I did not like 50 Shades but I did read all three just to see what the hype was all about, and I promised my sister I'd see the movie with her. I hated the writing and the premise of the book. Such a terrible example for young women. I did not like Gone Girl at all! I do have Sharp Objects and will probably read that sometime this year. I just finished A Thousand Splendid Suns - I do recommend it but it was a slow-to-start book for me. I liked the Kite Runner more, but this was a page turner for the last half of the book. I spend a good chunk of time on the weekends reading and squeeze in little bits during the week when I have less time. I try to do 20-30 minutes before bed, but only if it's an easy read because otherwise I fall asleep.