Reviews and Essays

2019 Reading Challenge Results

HAPPY NEW YEAR’s EVE ♥ I must say, 2019 was not my best year, but I did read a lot of great books. So that’s something! But with all the major life events that occurred this past year, I kid you not, I 100% forgot about this challenge until mid-December. I probably only paid attention to it for January, and MAYBE part of February. That said, I have read over 100 books this year, so there’s bound to be some happy coincidences in there, right? Let’s see how I did.

Complete a Series I’ve Started check-mark-2025986_1280

Paper Girls by Brian K Vaughan & Cliff Chiang — sad it’s over, glad I saw it through

A Physical Book check-mark-2025986_1280

Many, the most recent being Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan — It was okay, but I much preferred his other book, Sourdough

A Non-Fiction Book check-mark-2025986_1280

Quite a few, but the most recent was American Kingpin: The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road by Nick Bilton — un-put-downable!

A Classic check-mark-2025986_1280

The Curious Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson — I read it in one sitting and enjoyed it. I even happily re-read it for a book club a few months later

An LGBTQ+ Author check-mark-2025986_1280

Only a couple that I know of, including Michael McDowell, Cold Moon Over Babylon — a very creepy and atmospheric read

A Protagonist with a Disability check-mark-2025986_1280

I did encounter more side characters with disabilities than protagonists, but I will go ahead and cite Merricat in We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson who surely suffers from an unnamed/undiagnosed mental health disorder.

A Debut Author check-mark-2025986_1280

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng — Wow. How was that a debut? It’s so good.

A Book by a Podcaster I Listen to check-mark-2025986_1280

The Lady from the Black Lagoon by Mallory O’Meara (Reading Glasses) — So good! I listened to the audiobook and loved every minute of this untold Hollywood story

A Male Author check-mark-2025986_1280

Everyone always says that we need to diversify our reading life by including women, but I actually default to women, so I decided to throw in some male voices this year 🙂 I read a few, including two books by Riley Sager, Final Girls and The Last Time I Lied, which were both full of silly horror tropes but still lots of fun

A Book from Inside a Culture/Community I Don’t Belong to check-mark-2025986_1280

Quite a few, including Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood — listened to the audio twice in a row and will probably listen to it a third time at some point!

A Random Book from my Goodreads TBR check-mark-2025986_1280

The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter had been in the backlog for a long time — it wasn’t that good 😦

A Random Book from my Kindle Library check-mark-2025986_1280

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman was one that had been there the longest — I really enjoyed it

A Book I Had Bailed on in the Past check-mark-2025986_1280

Splintered by A.G. Howard — It was one I really wanted to enjoy, but didn’t get far before deciding it wasn’t what I was hoping. I ended up giving it a second shot, seeing it through, but my mind didn’t change. Not for me.

A Book Adapted to a Movie/TV Show I Like check-mark-2025986_1280

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson — Both the book and the show are incredible

A Book Being Adapted for the Screen mark-39951_1280

Not that I’m aware of, though there are plenty I’d like to see get made. I think Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell would be a great movie.

A Goodreads Recommendation I Was Skeptical of  check-mark-2025986_1280

Admittedly, I had no idea what to expect when I saw a rec for a book series called The Vampire Knitting Club by Nancy Warren. It was so odd that I couldn’t resist, and figured it would at least be good for a few laughs. I loved it. I did laugh, both at and with it, but ultimately I was all in. I’ve since read the first 4 of the ongoing series haha

A Book that has Been on My TBR for 2+ Years check-mark-2025986_1280

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier — It had been on my TBR list since I saw the Hitchcock adaptation a over decade ago, and I was not disappointed

A High Fantasy check-mark-2025986_1280

I think Uprooted by Naomi Novik might count — I absolutely loved it, but I still resist reading more of the genre. Not sure why.

A 2019 Release check-mark-2025986_1280

Magic for Liars by Sarah Gailey — Very unique use of the magic school trope; I gobbled it up

A Book Someone Bought for Me check-mark-2025986_1280

Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens — I don’t usually pick up middle-grade fiction but I had heard good things about this one. So when I got it for xmas last year, I was excited, and for good reason! I loved it.

A Judy Blume Book mark-39951_1280

Nope. Never even crossed my mind.

A Book About a Woman in her 30s check-mark-2025986_1280

I think I got a few of these in, one of which was Wherever She Goes by Kelley Armstrong — a good thriller

A Book About a Natural Disaster check-mark-2025986_1280

The Fated Sky by Mary Robinette Kowall, which is about the fallout of a meteorite crash

A Book About a Pandemic check-mark-2025986_1280

The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline, about a pandemic that takes away people’s ability to dream (sounds weird, but it’s a beautifully crafted story).


So all in all, I did pretty good. Without even realizing it, I hit 22 of my 24 reading goals. I think that’s because I really varied my reading this year by finding a variety of bookish sources (multiple podcasts, Litsy, Goodreads). It’s made me a much more diverse reader than I’ve been in the past, which is really great. I can’t wait to see what 2020 holds!

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