Congrats for making it to the end of the 2023 Summer Reading Challenge! As I sat down to work on the list of books I read this summer, I am so proud of us and of this challenge. Thanks to this challenge, every summer I read several books that I simply would not have read without this nudge of this challenge. I imagine it’s the same for you.
Three things to know for me this summer:
1. Last summer I only read one novel. (What?! I know). This summer had a lot more fiction. Yay!
2. Thanks to the “Penalty Book” category, for the sixth summer I read a book I have been meaning to read for ages! Go penalty books! After last summer’s colossal disappointment of a penalty book read, this year I’m back on track. I’m so glad I read No Ordinary Time by Doris Kearns Goodwin and that it has moved from the “I want to read” to “I’ve read that!” column.
3. Summer reading makes me happy.
So, how did The Summer Reading Challenge go for you? Remember, in The Summer Reading Challenge the goal is to read seven books between June 1 and August 11th. Comment below and you are entered for one of ten $10 Amazon gift cards. Even if you didn’t read seven books, still share what you read! This isn’t really a contest so much as a chance to share and a see how many books we read collectively.
I also find great books for my fall reading in your comments :).
I’m going to put the categories here if you want to cut and paste them into the comments. Also feel free to just list books, whatever works for you.
A biography or a book about history
A book you already own
A book you’ve been wanting to reread
A book a friend recommended
A Young Adult book (YA)
A book of poetry
A memoir or autobiography
A graphic novel
A book for professional development (loosely defined)
A book longer than 600 pages (counts as two books)
A book with a verb in the title
A book about a country or culture you have never visited
A book that won an award
A book by someone with a different view point than you
A book by an author you know (get “credit” for supporting your friends 😊)
A book with an animal
A book less than 100 pages
A book you want to discuss with others
A book you read as a child
A book in a different language than English (could be sign language, morse code, Spanish, don’t get hung up on terms 😊)
Read out loud to someone. Could be a whole book, a favorite passage, or to a child
Listen to someone reading out loud (not an audio book, an actual person)
Penalty book—subtract 2 books if you didn’t read.
Amy’s books with a five star rating (you don’t have to do this!)
A biography or a book about history—The Personal Librarian by Marie Benedict (3.5 stars)
A graphic novel—My Begging Chart by Keiler Roberts (3 stars)
A book longer than 600 pages (counts as two books)—No Ordinary Time by Doris Kearns Goodwin (I love Doris Kearns Goodwin’s writing. Very interesting to read about WW2 in light of the current war in Ukraine. In the middle of WW2, it became evident the Allies would win and so the leaders started thinking about Europe and Asia after the war. What are current leaders already working on for Ukraine and Russia? This was my penalty book 4.5 stars)
A book with a verb in the title—The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave (I must be living under a rock! I’d never heard of this book until a member of our book group won 12 copies for us. Yes, it’s a TV show which I have now watched. Page turner! Great summer book. 5 stars)
A book that won an award—Transcendent Kingdom by Yao Gyasi (WOMEN’s prize finalist. 4 stars)
A book by an author you know —Hello, My Name Is Phillip by Brian Shimer (I met Brian at a Member Care Conference in May. His booth was next to mine and after hearing me desperately force my books people because I didn’t have suitcase space, he told me he’d written a book. He’s a kind man!)
An audiobook—Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave (Having read The Last Thing I Told You, I was curious about her earlier work. Definitely a few themes beginning to emerge in her writing! Enjoyed listening, but not as much as The Last Thing, 3.5 stars)
A book with an animal—Anxious People by Fredrik Backman (Okay, so there was a man with a rabbit mask, and the main character called her daughters “monkey” and “frog.” So, you can see that we can loosely interpret these categories. This was a reread for book group . . . and I loved it even more! 5 stars)
Listen to someone reading out loud (not an audio book, an actual person)—Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco (I had the privilege of hearing my mom read this book. My friend Katie and her family were in the States for the summer and the love to have “Mama Young” read to them. 4.5 stars)
You can see I didn’t read in every category.
I come back to this not being a contest, if you read four books and that was your goal, great! I find that I’m more likely to accomplish my goals if I tell people what they are. I wouldn’t have read a book out loud or pushed to read the book Brian mailed me. I’m 99% sure I would still be intending to read No Ordinary Time. Thanks to you, I read all of them.
All who comment between now and August 14th with the names of the books they read will be entered to win one of ten $10 Amazon gift cards. To enter, leave a comment on this post.
I can’t wait to see what you’ve been reading. I’ll pick winners on Monday so you have several days to leave a comment.
Thank you for joining in!