Some of you may be wondering what the challenges are all about in the left-hand column. I tried to link to the challenge pages using the blogger template, but for some reason it won’t allow it. So instead I’m going to explain it here.

In addition to my personal goal of reading 52 books this year (or one book a week), I also joined two challenges I found on the internet. The first is the TBR (to be read) Challenge, which encourages participants to finally read the books that have been lingering unread on their shelves for far too long. Any book that you’ve been planning on reading for more than one year can be added to your challenge list, which is 12 books long (one for each month of the year).

The second challenge I joined is the Chunkster Challenge. In this challenge participants choose four books (one for each quarter of the year) that are 450 pages in length or longer.

I only chose to do these two challenges because I’m going to have less time this year with going to grad school, moving back to California and looking for work. However, if you are interested in participating in a challenge, and neither of these suits you, I’ve provided links to a number of other challenges you may find interesting. Many of you have expressed a desire to read more, but haven’t found the inspiration or motivation to really do it. Perhaps one of these challenges will be just the motivation you need…

The Graphic Novel ChallengeEncourages readers to read six graphic novels by the end of 2008. Also provides a list of award-winning graphic novels in case you’re just getting started in the graphic novel genre.

The What’s In a Name Challenge: The mediator of this challenge gives a subject, say animals, and you have to pick a book that has that subject in the title (To Kill A Mockingbird would work for the animals subjet). This looks like a fun one because you can be creative in what you choose.

The 19th Century Women Writers Challenge:If you’re a big fan of Jane Austen and her kind, this might be the challenge for you (Ahem, Steph, Ahem). The blogger also has a link to a list of books in case you’re coming up blank. For this challenge you are only required to read six books. Not bad, I’d say.

The First in a Series Challenge: I think the title of this one says it all, as many of them do. This challenge requires 12 books by the end of 2008.

The Year of Reading Dangerously Challenge: This one encourages readers to read books from genres that intimidate them. There is a suggested reading list, or you can choose your own. Again, 12 books, one per month.

Feel free to look for other challenges and join at will. I hope this gets some of you reading a bit more this year. Also, you may consider reading some of the books from The 100 Best Books of 2007 list. There are quite a few on my TBR list already.

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