2022 Reading Challenge discussion

ARCHIVE: Monthly Challenges > March Challenge: Courage

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Kadijah Michelle (kadmich) | 2176 comments March's theme is courage:
Duration: March 1, 2016 to March 31, 2016

For this challenge, we would like you to read books that you define as courageous because what is brave to one person can be different to another.

We would like to give you some suggestions:
1. Look for books that are memoirs/autobiographies/biographies.
2. Books of historical fiction during times of war or political unrest.
3. Books that explore difficult topics where the protagonist must do something courageous.

It is up to you, all we ask is that you justify your selection.

So, for this challenge, please pick the number of books you like to read and let the challenge leader know.

This challenge is based on an idea given to us by Bobbie. Bobbie will be leading this challenge. Thank you Bobbie.

message 2: by Janet (new)

Janet (goodreadscomjanetj) | 784 comments I will read 1 book for sure that is courageous. Probably more than that but I will have to read the books first to see if they qualify.

message 3: by Jessica (last edited Mar 16, 2016 08:54AM) (new)

Jessica R. | 508 comments Put me down for five (books TBD). I have a lot of books on my plate coming up regarding body positivity and feminism, as well as some fiction where I'm sure that I'll find some courageous heroes/heroines. :)

1. The Supergirls: Fashion, Feminism, Fantasy, and the History of Comic Book Heroines - Book discusses courageous heroines from the comic book world
2. Black-Eyed Susans - Thriller that centers on a female protagonist who has to face her trauma
3. Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love & Fashion - Strong book on the body positivity movement
4. DC Comics: Bombshells #14 - Series centered on female heroes and villains.
5. The Shining - Story includes courageous acts by Dick Hallorann, Danny Torrance, and Wendy Torrance.


message 4: by Alison (new)

Alison G. (agriff22) | 1083 comments I am going to read I am Malala, so put me down for 1

message 5: by Janine (last edited Apr 01, 2016 02:00AM) (new)

message 6: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie  | 976 comments Put me down for 5. As March progresses I will update :)

message 7: by Bobbi (last edited Apr 02, 2016 07:21AM) (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Hi everyone! I hope you all have some fun with this. Adding my book choices below this list.

Janet 1/1
Jessica 5/5
Allison 0/1
Janine 2/2
Stephanie (R-A) 7/5
Bobbi 4/4
Charity 2/3
Alex 5/5
Sam F 1/1
Blagica 3/2
Becca 7/5
Geri 2/2
Andrew 4/3
Amanda 2/2
Kelly 2/2
Nicole 2/1
Emma 3/3
Maria 1/1
Katharine 4/4
Ayush 0/1
KellI 3/3
Cynthia 0/3
Annette 2/1
Lindsey 0/8
Erika 3/3
Rachel 1/3
Karin 0/2 ~Possibly more because who doesn't love books here, right? :)~
Nik 0/3
Jill 0/3
Katherine 0/3
Tania 2/3
Wanda 5/5
Rachel (post #48) 6/5
Joanne 0/1
Clare 2/2
Stephanie 2/2
Destiny 0/2
Akshay Krishna 0/1
Emily 2/5
Julie 0/1

message 8: by Bobbi (last edited Mar 28, 2016 05:27AM) (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments To see original plans, look here:(view spoiler)


1. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah ★★★★★ - This follows two sisters during the German occupation of France in WWII and it represents courageousness because both women find ways to stand up not only for their own families, but their Jewish countrymen at great risk to themselves. I loved it.
2. The Woman Who Lost Her Face How Charla Nash Survived the World's Most Infamous Chimpanzee Attack by NBC News ★★☆☆☆ - Charla Nash showed courage not only in going over to her friend's house to try to corral her loose chimpanzee, but also in the aftermath of the attack when dealing with the surgeries, complications, and stares from people who didn't know what to think of her/didn't know why she looked that way.
3. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee ★★★☆☆ - Atticus Finch stands up to his friends and neighbors in a time of segregation and pretty blatant racial motivations to do the right thing by defending an innocent black man against charges of raping a white woman.
4. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad ★★☆☆☆ - In which Marlowe, during a much different time period, travels to the Congo to collect a man named Kurtz and finds that not all is sunshine and roses as many are lead to believe back home. Not only does he take fire from "natives" and hitch a ride along with cannibals, but then there is Kurtz himself and the Harlequin, a man with, shall we say, macabre decorating tastes. It's a hard to understand book, because Conrad was a sadist and actually want it to be that way, and courage may not be the main point, but it is there if you squint right.

message 9: by Charity (last edited Mar 23, 2016 05:40PM) (new)

Charity (faeryrebel78) | 1465 comments Put me down for 3


1. Rose Under Fire 3/18/16
2. Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women and the Rest of Us 3/23/16

message 10: by Alex (last edited Mar 15, 2016 02:25PM) (new)

Alex Shelby (jynxmecrazie) | 277 comments COMPLETED

March's Courage Challenge
5/5 completed

1. Radhika's Story: Surviving Human Trafficking
Radhika's Story Surviving Human Trafficking by Sharon Hendry
Nonfiction book of a woman's survival from human trafficking.

2.Night Road
Night Road by Kristin Hannah
This book focuses a lot on making sacrifices and doing what you think is right, as well as on the courage to forgive.

3.The Girl from the Well
The Girl from the Well (The Girl from the Well, #1) by Rin Chupeco - Without giving too much away, this book is about a boy possessed by a ghost who has to try and rid himself of her. I think dealing with evil spirits makes someone pretty damn courageous!

4.Between Shades of Gray
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys - The story of a 15 year old girl, her brother, and her mom who are ripped from their home in Lithuania and forced to work in a Siberian prison camp. The courage the characters have to carry on each and every day comes from the motivation and influence of love.

5.Inside Out & Back Again
Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai - A young girl from Vietnam must flee after the Fall of Saigon to Alabama with her family. She feels out of place and must learn to overcome the feelings of inadequacy that happen when you're living in a completely foreign place and culture.

message 11: by Sam F (new)

Sam F | 1091 comments I will try for one as well.

message 12: by Blagica , Cheerleader! (new)

Blagica  | 12014 comments i'm in for 2 for now ty for the idea and hosting!

message 13: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments You're absolutely welcome Blagica. I'm happy to help out and have some fun with everyone.

I have everyone to here. If I miss you at any point, just let me know. Good luck everyone!

message 14: by Bec (last edited Feb 25, 2016 04:17PM) (new)

Bec (_becandbooks) I have so many books on my shelf to fit this category, maybe will use this category as motivation to read them. Put me down for 5 please :)

Reading at least the next three volumes of the Saga series which I think are courageous af (alien Romeo/Juliet couple flying through space with their hybrid/illegal child).

Saga, Volume 3
Saga, Volume 4
Saga, Volume 5
A Child Called 'It'
Memoirs of a Geisha/Orphan Train/Shoot the Damn Dog: A Memoir of Depression [TBD]

message 15: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments That sounds like an interesting series, Becca. Who's the author?

message 16: by Bec (new)

Bec (_becandbooks) It's a graphic novel series by Brian K Vaughan. I don't mind graphic novels but this series has got me hooked! The characters and species and worlds are just ridiculously amazing. Although I would warn that it is definitely adult and quite graphic at some points.

message 17: by Geri (last edited Mar 27, 2016 07:16AM) (new)

Geri | 63 comments I'll try for 2.

1. Look for books that are memoirs/autobiographies/biographies. I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban
2. Books of historical fiction during times of war or political unrest. To Kill a Mockingbird


Challenge completed!

message 18: by Andrew (last edited Mar 30, 2016 01:06PM) (new)

Andrew (nitesead) | 329 comments I will try for three. I am definitely reading the book about Malala. I'm not sure about the other two yet. I suspect I'll get more than three, but I keep overdoing my challenges so I'm playing it safe.

Also, as I go, I will present my justifications.

Thumbs up for the praises bestowed upon Saga. I'm caught up I think with the trade pbks.

1. Deadly Class, Vol. 3: The Snake Pit by Rick Remender (3/1/16) - High school kids in an impossible situation - going up against the most violent people you can imagine. In this volume, the protagonist even has to go against his own friends. This is a graphic novel, emphasis on the graphic!
2. Zlata's Diary: A Child's Life in Wartime Sarajevo by Zlata Filipović - (3/14/16) - A girl goes on with her life in the middle-literally-of bombs falling around her
3. Batman: Bruce Wayne, Murderer? by Greg Rucka (3/24/16) (It's Batman, the definition of courage, yes?)
4. Liberator, Vol. 1: Rage Ignition by Matt Miner (Animal Rights undercover action stuff)

message 19: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments I have everyone to here. Good luck!

Andrew, I know what you mean. I have a lot of challenges too but they're so fun. I'm competitive, even if it's only against myself. :)

message 20: by Amanda (last edited Apr 01, 2016 01:59PM) (new)

Amanda R (fairyteapot) | 1423 comments Sign me up for 2 thanks.

Duration: March 1st - March 31st 2016

For this challenge, we would like you to read books that you define as courageous because what is brave to one person can be different to another. It is up to you, all we ask is that you justify your selection.

1. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls Completed 9/3/16 Rating 4 stars

This is a memoir about the author's upbringing. Not only does she and her 3 siblings live in poverty but her parents are also dysfunctional: her father is an alcoholic and her mother would prefer to paint than take responsibility for the children. The children have to show extreme courage in their difficult circumstances: they are picked on at school, they have to live in a house which is falling apart, they move a lot at a moment's notice, they have to deal with their parents as if they, themselves are the adults and the parents, the children. The children do not chose this life but bravely live each day as best they can.

2. Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China by Jung Chang Completed 28/03/16 Rating 4 stars

Jung Chang has written a family history written around the lives of her grandmother, her mother and herself. It begins with traditional China, through the rise of Communism and the leadership of Chairman Mao and ends with the author's acceptance of the West.

This is what Jung Chang had to say about the first twenty-six years of her life and this sums it up:

"I had experienced privilege as well as denunciation, courage as well as fear, seen kindness and loyalty as well as the depths of human ugliness. Amid suffering, ruin, and death, I had above all known love and the indestructible human capacity to survive and to pursue happiness."


Challenge completed

message 21: by Kelly (last edited Mar 20, 2016 05:51AM) (new)

Kelly (kellysrambles) | 1000 comments Sign me up for 2 please!

Duration: March 1st - March 31st 2016

For this challenge, we would like you to read books that you define as courageous because what is brave to one person can be different to another. It is up to you, all we ask is that you justify your selection.

1. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo ✔

It took an enormous amount of courage and bravery for Kaz and his gang to complete the heist in this story. We also see how each of the characters are courageous in their own way, eg. We learn about Inej escaping from her abuser in the Menagerie and becoming stronger than ever.

2. I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai ✔

This doesn't need explaining. Malala is one of the most courageous young women I've learnt about in recent years. Such an inspiration to others all over the world.


message 22: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Welcome Amanda and Kelly! Good luck to you both.

message 23: by Nicole (new)

Nicole Woods (nicole_woods65) | 909 comments I'm in for 1!

message 24: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Welcome Nicole! Best of luck. :)

message 25: by Emma (last edited Mar 23, 2016 11:45PM) (new)

Emma Green | 198 comments I'll try for 3 please
1. The Death House by Sarah Pinborough
2. The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon - ruthie shows courage when her mum goes missing
3. The Ghost Tree by Sara Bain. Characters face up to spirits who set fire o things, hrow stones etc.

message 26: by Maria (new)

Maria (mariah90602) | 1728 comments I will try 1.

message 27: by Katharine (last edited Mar 30, 2016 11:31PM) (new)

Katharine | 101 comments I think I will try for 4.

Completed: 4/4

The Weight of Water by Anita Shreve The Weight of Water by Anita Shreve finished 3/3/16 ★★★½
Jean, the main character, investigates an old murder and finds herself questioning her emotions and her life.

The Face Of Deception by Iris Johansen finished 3/10/16 ★★★★★
The main character, Eve Duncan, perseveres in her career as a forensic sculptor despite her tragic past.

My Point... And I Do Have One by Ellen DeGeneres My Point... And I Do Have One by Ellen DeGeneres finished 3/24/16 ★★★★★
The epitome of courage, Ellen DeGeneres was a successful female comedienne at a time when there weren't many AND came out when the world was a much less safer place for LGBTA people (not that is really that safe now, but better) and despite this seemingly insurmountable hurdles, rose to superstardom and yet remains kind, generous, humble, and so much more.

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1) by Marissa MeyerCinder by Marissa Meyer finished 3/28/16 ★★★★★
Cinder is a cyborg, an almost reviled class in what today would be most of Asia, yet fights for her welfare and puts herself at risk for her adopted younger sister and for the people of her nation.

message 28: by Ayush (new)

Ayush Mehrotra (ayushmehrotra) New member here. 1 for me.

message 29: by KellI (last edited Mar 14, 2016 08:17AM) (new)

KellI Preston | 156 comments I am going to join this challenge. Put me down for 3. I know I am going to read
1. I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban: Done on 3/9/2016! Interesting to read about her life in Pakistan and what they went through. She truly is courageous and we will continue to hear from her as the years go on.

2. A Northern Light
A young adult novel that my daughter read so then I did too. The main character was a brave young lady named Mattie who decided courageously leave her family and go out on her own to become a writer. Not a typical or easy thing for a young woman in 1906. It took her the whole book to make the decision as the ties to her family were hard to break. But in the end she did what was best for her so she wouldn't lose herself.

3. The Last Midwife. Oh I loved this book. Gracy is a midwife in the 1800's and what a brave and courageous lady she was. She stood her ground when she knew she was innocent and rather than run away sat through a trial to prove she wasn't a murderer. A wonderful story!

And I will look through my book pile for a 3rd. It will help me focus on what I will read after these two.

message 30: by Annette (new)

Annette Sign me up for 1, thank you. I'm starting out slow, I'm new.

message 31: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments I have everyone added to here. Welcome and good luck!

Ayush and Annette, welcome to the group! I don't get over to the introductions thread very often so I missed you but it's nice to have you. :)

message 32: by [deleted user] (last edited Mar 01, 2016 09:55AM) (new)

I'm ready to read!
Sign me up for 8 at the moment.

1. The Music of Silence by Andrea Bocelli
2. Unstoppable The Incredible Power of Faith in Action by Nick Vujicic
3. The Kid Who Climbed Everest The Incredible Story of a 23-Year-Old's Summit of Mt. Everest by Bear Grylls
4. We Who Are Alive and Remain Untold Stories from the Band of Brothers by Marcus Brotherton
5. Walk to Beautiful The Power of Love and a Homeless Kid Who Found the Way by Jimmy Wayne
6. Elon Musk Inventing the Future by Ashlee Vance
7. And Then All Hell Broke Loose Two Decades in the Middle East by Richard Engel
8. A Child Called "It" (Dave Pelzer #1) by Dave Pelzer

message 33: by Bobbi (last edited Mar 01, 2016 01:47AM) (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Wow! Good luck, Lindsey!

message 34: by Erika (new)

Erika (erikarae) | 708 comments I'll try for 3 please!

message 35: by Rachel (last edited Mar 09, 2016 10:35AM) (new)

message 36: by Karin (new)

Karin | 757 comments Okay, I'm in. I have some historical fiction set during war times:

1. Fallen Land by Taylor Brown
2. The Red and the Black by Stendhal

May I add more if I read more that fit?

message 37: by Nik (new)

Nik (bleepnik) | 852 comments Hi, Bobbi, thanks for the idea and for leading this challenge. =) I think I'll try for 3 and see how that goes. Titles TBD.

message 38: by Ayush (last edited Mar 01, 2016 08:58PM) (new)

Ayush Mehrotra (ayushmehrotra) I bought I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban on my Kindle. Starting it :)

Only 1 as I'm reading War and Peace for another challenge and it would be too overwhelming.

message 39: by Bobbi (last edited Mar 01, 2016 09:13PM) (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Karin wrote: "Okay, I'm in. I have some historical fiction set during war times:

1. Fallen Land by Taylor Brown
2. The Red and the Black by Stendhal

May I add more if I read more that fit?"

Absolutely. You can either let me know, or I'll just add it to your two so your post, for example would look like:

Karin: 3/2

You're always welcome to read more. I never hold it against anyone. ;)

You're so welcome Nik. I hope everyone has a bunch of fun reading some books about courageous people! Good luck to everyone!

Ayush, you know you can list a book on more than one challenge unless otherwise specified, right? Here's my Challenges Thread to give you an idea of what I mean. So since War and Peace works here and for your other challenge, when you finish, you could list it on both as far as I'm concerned. That's completely up to you though. One book is still great! :)

message 40: by Jill (last edited Mar 02, 2016 12:19AM) (new)

message 41: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Interesting choices Jill! Welcome and good luck.

message 42: by Katherine (last edited Mar 27, 2016 10:36AM) (new)

Katherine | 79 comments COURAGE. Duration: March 1st - March 31st 2016
I'll use 3 books. Completed: 3/3

1. Live Strong: Inspirational Stories from Cancer Survivors-from Diagnosis to Treatment and Beyond 21/3/16
- In real life, I can't think of anything more brave and strong in a person who had to survive and fight to live from cancer.

2. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies - 11/3/16
- I can't think of something else that gives someone courage like battling a horde of zombies that are after your flesh.

3. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire 27/3/16
- Harry & his friends have always made me feel courageous for the things they have done, and they make me want to be as strong as they are emotionally and physically.

Live Strong Inspirational Stories from Cancer Survivors-from Diagnosis to Treatment and Beyond by Lance Armstrong Foundation Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, #1) by Seth Grahame-Smith Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter, #4) by J.K. Rowling

message 43: by Tania (last edited Mar 23, 2016 01:17PM) (new)

Tania | 901 comments I would like to join this challenge with a target of 3 books that are courageous.

Count: 2/3

1. Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali by Kris Holloway
2. The Martian by Andy Weir

message 44: by Wanda (last edited Mar 23, 2016 05:24PM) (new)

Wanda (goodreadscomwanda_williams) | 45 comments I would like to join in this month. I'm going for 5 books. I'll post my choices after I decide. I know I am a little late in getting this info to you. The Courage Tree by Diane Chamberlain, Incidents In The LIfe Of A Slave Girl Written By Herself by Harriet Ann Jacobs, Awesome Bill From Dawsonville: My Life In NASCAR by Bill Elliott. I have read 3/5 in the Courage Challenge.

message 45: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie  | 976 comments I read my first book! The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan. It falls under this challenge because it is about two kids who watch their father be killed in front of them and then they have to confront the Egyptian God who murdered their father before he destroys the world while trying to not be possessed by Egyptian Gods themselves. (Sorry, it's a run-on sentence I know, but it's a lot going on). They are only 12 and 16, so it takes a lot of courage. :)

message 46: by Nicole (new)

Nicole Woods (nicole_woods65) | 909 comments Bobbi wrote: "Welcome Nicole! Best of luck. :)"

Thanks! You, too!

message 47: by Rachel (new)

Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 161 comments I'll say 5 books for me, but I'm honestly not too worried about the number. I'm just curious to see how many of the books I'm already going to read fall into the courage theme.

Yesterday, I read my first book for this month, which was Coraline. I definitely think it fits the theme of courage because Coraline has to enter a creepy alternate world and take on a scary version of her mother to try and rescue her real parents. While there, she encounters all kinds of creepy elements including the spirits of dead children, and a few strange creatures. It takes a lot of courage for a young child to face their fears, and especially to try and do the right thing even when another path might be a little easier.

message 48: by JoJo (new)

JoJo (jojo2013) | 813 comments I will go for 1 for now, I might update my goal later.

1. I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

message 49: by Bobbi (new)

Bobbi  (schadenfreudian) | 499 comments Updated to post 49.

message 50: by Blagica , Cheerleader! (new)

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