Friday, January 09, 2009

More challenges...

When I wrapped up the Graphic Novels Challenge at the end of last year I hadn't yet heard who was taking it over from Dewey, but I knew I'd want to join again. So this just makes it official. Thank you to Laza for hosting the Graphic Novels Challenge this year. There are a few options this time around and I'm going with the Minor Level so the goal is to read 6 graphic novels over the course of the year. I'm not sure yet exactly which ones I'll read for the challenge but I hope to read these this year:
Skim - Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
French Milk - Lucy Knisley
Mouse Guard: Fall 1152 - David Peterson
Embroideries - Marjane Satrapi
I have a couple others I'd like to read too but I don't own them yet. And I'm looking forward to hearing what everyone else is reading and getting some more ideas.

I really enjoyed participating in Joy's Non-Fiction Five Challenge the last couple of years. I tend to read fiction most of the time so it was a great little incentive to pick up some non-fiction instead. This year, Eva's World Citizen Challenge is tempting for the same reason. There are several levels to choose from for this challenge too, and I'm again going with the Minor Level. Therefore my goal is to read 3 books from 2 different categories (of the 6 defined for the challenge) in 2009. (Click on the button to read more about the challenge).

I'm not going to set out a specific list ahead of time but I do have a few non-fiction books lying around to choose from. My choices will probably lean towards Asian, and specifically Japanese culture and history since that's where my interest lies but I wouldn't mind reading more about some global issues so we'll see how it goes as the year progresses.
Here are a few of the ones I have waiting to be read:
Embracing Defeat - John Dower
Polite Lies: On Being a Woman Caught Between Cultures - Kyoko Mori
The Lady and the Monk: Four Seasons in Kyoto - Pico Iyer
Tibet, Tibet - Patrick French
Re-enchantment: Tibetan Buddhism Comes to the West - Jeffrey Paine

I don't get too many review copies, due to that pesky overseas shipping, but I plan to try to keep on top of the ones I do have. I feel guilty otherwise if they sit for too long. So I figured I might as well join Teddy Rose's ARC Reading Challenge. (For the purposes of the challenge, ARC stands for any book received for review purposes). You can see my list of review books waiting to be read here, as well as links to the ones I've already read and reviewed.

And last but not least, I'm of course still continuing with the long-term Orange Prize Project. I only read a measly two books for it last year, How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff (New Writers Prize Shortlist 2005) and The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney (Longlist 2007), but hopefully I'll manage to fit in a few more this year. I know joining so many other challenges doesn't help but I can't seem to resist, and they really do encourage me to get some books out of TBR purgatory. Here's hoping for a fun year of reading, whether for challenges or not!


  1. Thanks for joining my challenge! I look forward to your reviews on books about Japan, since I know next to nothing about the country. :)

  2. Your sidebar says you're reading After Dark! I hope you're enjoying it. It was the third book of the new year for me and I really liked it. :)

    I look forward to your review!

  3. I'm hoping to read Mouse Guard this year too, looks lovely! I'll be interested to hear what you think of it. Happy reading!

  4. Challenges do tend to make books that have been on the TBR pile forever look more promising, huh? Even if you only read a couple, that's more than you might have read otherwise!

  5. Thanks for joining the ARC challenge!

  6. Eva - Thanks for hosting! I always seem to need a little encouragement to read non-fiction which is silly since I usually do enjoy it once I pick something up.

    saveophelia - I actually finished it in the airport on our way back to Japan but haven't written up the review yet. I liked it but not nearly as much as some of Murakami's other stuff.

    mariel - Mouse Guard does look great, doesn't it? I look forward to hearing what you think of it too.

    Kailana - That's exactly how I feel about challenges. I love finishing them but even if I don't and they've got me to read some old TBR books, then it was worth it. :)

    Teddy Rose - Thanks for hosting!

  7. Happy New Year! May your year ahead be filled with successfully completed reading challenges. :-P

    I see another one signed up with the World Citizen Challenge. Must say, it's looking pretty tempting...

    By the way - that's a lovely haul of books you brought back from home. And yeah! on the Cheerios!

  8. You have some great reading ahead of you! I especially look forward to your thoughts on Mouse Guard and Embroideries.

  9. I've read 3 out of the 4 graphic novels you listed - very good stuff! I sort of wanted to jump into this challenge but am trying to show some restraint.

    Actually, that's why I'm passing up on Eva's too but I still think about it every once in a while :)

    Have fun with your challenges!

  10. Good luck with your challenges, Nat! I considered doing the graphic novels challenge again this year, but decided against it. I'll be curious to see what everyone else is reading though and I hope I can fit in one or two this year as well.

    The ARC Challenge was a no-brainer for me and I hope it helps keep me on task. I am glad you are joining in that one as well. :-)

  11. indigo - Thanks! And Happy New Year to you too! :)
    I keep eyeing the box of Cheerios but I kind of don't want to open it yet because I'll be sad when they're all gone. :P

    Nymeth - I'm looking forward to reading both of those this year. :)

    Iliana - Thanks. I'm looking forward to reading some more graphic novels this year. :)

    Wendy - You could always have a little graphic novel marathon again at some point.
    I know I don't have nearly as many review books as some others but I do want to keep on top of them this year so it made sense to join.
    Good luck with all of your challenges too! :)

  12. Good luck on your challenges! I just finished reading French Milk and really enjoyed it. I am going to try and get my hands on a copy of Embroderies, too.

  13. Lesley - Thanks! Good luck with all of yours as well. Glad to hear you enjoyed French Milk, I'm really looking forward to reading it.


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