Around the Year in 52 Books discussion

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2019 Plans > Completed Challenges 2019

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message 1: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2369 comments You did it! Check in here when you completed your 2019 ATY challenge so we can celebrate together! Share your favorite reads and prompts, your stats, etc.


message 2: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Stop taunting me, Katie! I need to think everyone else is two books behind like I am!


message 3: by Tracy, Constellation Mod (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 2542 comments Mod
Emily wrote: "Stop taunting me, Katie! I need to think everyone else is two books behind like I am!"

No worries Emily, I've only read 11 !!!!


message 4: by Lieke (new)

Lieke | 709 comments Tracy wrote: "Emily wrote: "Stop taunting me, Katie! I need to think everyone else is two books behind like I am!"

No worries Emily, I've only read 11 !!!!"


Me too Tracy :(


message 5: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3489 comments I'm on 8. Together, we can all make Emily feel like she's actually kicking butt!


message 6: by Laura, Celestial Sphere Mod (new)

Laura | 3821 comments Mod
And here I am, 9 books behind 😂


message 7: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Bahahaha you have all made me feel loads better about being behind (although we've ruined Katie's thread!)


message 8: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2369 comments No ruining here at all.

Though I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here.


message 9: by Sophie (new)

Sophie (sawphie) | 2920 comments Whaaat Katie you’re a machine!!! Congrats!


message 10: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 1719 comments Katie wrote: "I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here."

Wow! Well done, you!


message 11: by Edie (new)

Edie | 848 comments Katie wrote: "No ruining here at all.

Though I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here."


Congrats! How are you going to fill all those days between today and December 31?


message 12: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3489 comments Holy crap, Katie! That’s amazing!!


message 13: by MJ (new)

MJ | 681 comments Whaaaat? I am SIX BOOKS BEHIND.

Congrats, Katie! What on earth will you do now?


message 14: by Sara (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 930 comments Dang, Katie. I guess this means you will now have to do ALL the rejects.


message 15: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2369 comments Thanks everybody! I still have PopSugar, Book Riot & my personal reject challenge that I'm trying to get done this year. It's my first year taking on Book Riot, and since I was able to knock out ATY, I feel like there's actually a chance to be able to complete my other challenges.

I kind of can't believe how many books I've been reading this year. I know at some point a reading slump will come, and I'm actually surprised it hasn't happened yet. For my ATY challenge, I focused on reading diversely, and I loved it. I feel like that choice to focus on marginalized voices really invigorated my reading.

Some stats on my ATY challenge:

Fiction/Nonfiction: 31/21
Female Author/Male Author/Both: 37/12/3
American Author/Author from around the world: 35/17
New Author/Repeat Author: 45/7
5 Star/4 Star/3 Star/2 Star: 10/11/28/3

My top 3 books of the challenge:

A Place for Us (A book with a title, subtitle or cover related to an astronomical term)
The Girls at 17 Swann Street (A book related to something cold)
Becoming (A book from the 2018 GR Choice Awards)


message 16: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Those are excellent stats! Congrats Katie!


message 17: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Audiogirl.booking.it (audiogirlbookingit) | 488 comments Wow Katie!! Nice job I was feeling good with 23 books done but you smoked it!!


message 18: by Rachelnyc (new)

Rachelnyc | 943 comments Katie wrote: "Thanks everybody! I still have PopSugar, Book Riot & my personal reject challenge that I'm trying to get done this year. It's my first year taking on Book Riot, and since I was able to knock out AT..."

Wow, that's amazing, congratulations!

A Place for Us and Becoming are two of my top three so far this year as well. I'll have to check out The Girls at 17 Swann Street.


message 19: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 441 comments I finished at the end of March. But only because I decided to focus on ATY first and then move on to other challenges. Last year I kind of read whatever, whenever, slotted books in as appropriate and then mopped up what was left. Overall I’m pretty happy with my picks - four 5 star reads, 41 4 star reads and the rest were 3 stars with an average rating of 3.94. My favourite were Where the Crawdads Sing, Daisy Jones and the Six and The Heart’s Invisible Furies. I stuck to my original list but later in the year I may go back and make substitutions if I read something I like better or that I feel is a better fit. I’m meant to be focusing on Popsugar now but keep getting distracted by all the shiny new things I see on Bookstagram .


message 20: by Steve (new)

Steve | 533 comments Katie wrote: "No ruining here at all.

Though I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here."


Katie, in the past was it that you were finishing your 52nd book OVERALL at the end of the year, or were you well over 52 but weren't reading things for THIS challenge the whole time? I'm curious because if it's the former, I'd LOVE to know how you managed to significantly increase your reading. If it's the latter, I'm curious why you decided to focus on ATY right away this year.


message 21: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2568 comments Wow Katie and Serendipity! That’s crazy that you’ve already finished. Congrats! 8 months to work on other challenges OR just read without thinking about prompts.


message 22: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Steve, two years ago, I finished my 52nd book on New Years Eve night. Last year, I read 93. I'm currently on book 41 (on pace to hit 130 this year).

The things that greatly increased my reading:

- Always having a few books on deck. It's harder to pick up a new book when you don't have an idea of what you want to read next. I found that picking a few books that I wanted to read in a month (and reserving those ahead at the library) helped tremendously. I even move them to a separate shelf on my bookshelf each month so that I have that stack to choose from (rather than all of my shelves overwhelming me).

- Putting down my phone. Obviously. But I really made an effort to read for at least 30 minutes each night, and that was typically the time between supper and sleep, when I would normally be scrolling through Instagram on my phone.

- Having a routine for when I finish each book. I would look forward to finishing a book so that I could log it in my spreadsheet, upload a review on GR, and add it to my ATY plan, the A-Z folders, and the weekly topic thread. Getting to engage with the community on here really helped me stay motivated to keep reading.

Couldn't help putting my two cents in, even though I'm behind on ATY (but way ahead on my ATY Rejects and also allllll the side reads).


message 23: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Audiogirl.booking.it (audiogirlbookingit) | 488 comments Serendipity wrote: "I finished at the end of March. But only because I decided to focus on ATY first and then move on to other challenges. Last year I kind of read whatever, whenever, slotted books in as appropriate a..."

Great job!! i am always so impressed by some of you that do mulitiple challenges. I read a log of books but find that one challenge is more than enough of structured reading the rest of the time i just want to read what strikes my fancy! But had to chime in that I LOVED Hearts Invisible Furies and Where the Crawdads sing. ( I should check out Daisy in the 6). Curious of your other 2 5-star reads. I am very stingy with my 5-stars so far this year think i have 2 or 3. Congrats on finishing the challenge!


message 24: by Irene (new)

Irene | 93 comments I am no way near finished and I lost a bit of steam recently, but I just had to say I also LOVED where the crawdads sing, think it was my favorite book this year so far.

Congrats Katie and Serendipity!


message 25: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2369 comments Steve, I have read more than 52 books each year. Starting in 2017, I started adding additional requirements onto my challenge to make them more difficult. In 2017, I didn't plan my books, but I decided to read the prompts in order. In 2018, I planned all of my books ahead of time and read them in any order. I'm a huge mood reader, so when I had these additional requirements, I became less motivated to read the books I had selected, or find a book that fit the particular prompt that was up next.

Since I found these approaches less successful for me personally, this year, I decided not to read in order or plan any books ahead, but just try to focus on reading diverse authors. This more free-spirited approach suited me much better, and my topical approach to the challenge made me most enthusiastic in my reading.

Next year I plan to follow in Marina & Jody's footsteps & read long books. So I don't anticipate the quick finish in 2020.


message 26: by MJ (new)

MJ | 681 comments Katie wrote: "Steve, I have read more than 52 books each year. Starting in 2017, I started adding additional requirements onto my challenge to make them more difficult. In 2017, I didn't plan my books, but I dec..."

Everyone’s reading style is so different. Thanks for sharing this. I’ve been thinking about next year’s challenge and part of me wants to focus on chunksters too. The other part of me wants to do a year of non-fiction. This year my goal is that 50 percent indigenous: either author or subject. Maybe it’s too soon to plan for next year?. I have not finished an ATY challenge yet. Is this my fourth year?


message 27: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
It's never too soon to plan, MJ!

Katie, I may steal your idea of reading strictly diverse authors next year for the challenge!


message 28: by Hannah (new)

Hannah | 384 comments Emily wrote: "It's never too soon to plan, MJ!

Katie, I may steal your idea of reading strictly diverse authors next year for the challenge!"


I think I’m going to focus on diverse authors as well. If you do decide to do this next year, it will be really interesting to compare lists and share ideas.

I was tempted to only read longer books next year, but this year I’ve already read 18 books over 500 pages, and 6 of those were more than 800 pages so reading diverse authors would be more of a challenge.


message 29: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Katie, don't forget to update the spreadsheet so I can gray out your list as COMPLETE!


message 30: by Sara (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 930 comments I'm thinking of doing something very strange next year. I'm going to try to do re-reads. I so often come across books that I read when I was much younger, particularly classics, that I want to revisit, but I can never make myself do it because there are so many books I have never read that I believe need my attention. On the other hand, the books I want to re-read are 5-star books, and I often find I have wasted my time reading something that only rates 2-stars in my evaluation. So, I might use the ATY to try and spur myself to read it again instead of read it at last, so to speak.


message 31: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (last edited Apr 25, 2019 02:38PM) (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 7391 comments Mod
Sara, I love love love rereads! I usually choose 5 or 6 books that I want to reread throughout the year... and that usually happens in September and October when work is crazy and I just want the comfort of not having to struggle to remember plot and worry about an outcome... knowing the ending ahead of time means you can focus on the details more closely and enjoy the book more thoroughly the second time around.

That being said, I don't think I'd want to do 52 rereads. But I usually pick out a few that I want to come back to... I think I had 6 rereads last year (including one trilogy).


message 32: by Sara (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 930 comments Of course, it wouldn't be 52, Emily, because I don't think I could find one to fit every prompt...for instance this year we have a prompt for a book published in 2019...but I'm betting I can fit in at least half of the prompts, so maybe 25 re-reads. Some of them go back so far in the past they would be like new books to me, I'm sure. Just a thought to kick around.


message 33: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 441 comments I made two challenges for myself this year. One was to read at least 10 books set in countries I’d never read about before. Ideally they’d be written by authors from that country. The other challenge was to read more non-fiction, specifically to read at least one book from each of the ten main Dewey classifications. So far I’ve read from 8 new-to-me countries and 17 books from 7 Dewey classifications. I’m already thinking about other self-I posed challenges. One will definitely be to read more books from my country (New Zealand). So far I’ve only read one New Zealand book out of 80 or so books this year! Probably an indication of the dominance of the US publishing industry.


message 34: by Irene (new)

Irene | 93 comments I like the idea of adding some rereads. I hope I would have more understanding and appreciation now for some of the books I read in my teens or early twenties.


message 35: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3489 comments TEAM CHONK INTENSIFIES.

Always excited to see someone join us! 😁


message 36: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 1719 comments Sara wrote: "Of course, it wouldn't be 52, Emily, because I don't think I could find one to fit every prompt..."

I think it might be possible to do all 52, with some tweaking. Like, for a book published in 2019 you could do a book with a new edition published in 2019. Or for a book from the goodreads award you could choose something from an earlier year rather than 2019. Just a thought. :)


message 37: by Sara (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 930 comments I suppose that is true, with some tweaking, but I don't know how you would get around a prompt that says "41. A book from the 2018 GR Choice Awards" without disregarding an important element of the prompt-the year. Still, I wasn't planning to have every single book a re-read, only to scatter some of them in, so not a problem for me.


message 38: by Sandra (new)

Sandra The Old Woman in a Van (theoldwomaninavan) | 66 comments Katie wrote: "No ruining here at all.

Though I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here."


dalex wrote: "Katie wrote: "I am very pleased to announce that after 2 years of finishing the challenge on December 31, I finished this year's challenge on April 16! Party over here."

Wow! Well done, you!"


Well done!!!


message 39: by Sandra (new)

Sandra The Old Woman in a Van (theoldwomaninavan) | 66 comments I am done! I read some great books this year and again was pushed out of my comfort zone. I love this challenge. I’ll come back and post highlights once I sort it all out. The spreadsheet is filled in. I review every book I read; you can find them on my page.


message 40: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2568 comments Congrats Sandra! 🎉🎉🎉


message 41: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Audiogirl.booking.it (audiogirlbookingit) | 488 comments Sandra wrote: "I am done! I read some great books this year and again was pushed out of my comfort zone. I love this challenge. I’ll come back and post highlights once I sort it all out. The spreadsheet is filled..."

NICE JOB Sandra.. would love to see what your faves were!


message 42: by Sara (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 930 comments Bravo, Sandra!


message 43: by Michelle (new)

Michelle (maezyreads) I have 1 book left to finish. I'm 45% of the way through. I went away from the list for a bit and read a few other books. I'm going to make myself finish this last book tomorrow.
I have also completed the Popsugar Challenge.


message 44: by Sandra (new)

Sandra The Old Woman in a Van (theoldwomaninavan) | 66 comments Michelle wrote: "I have 1 book left to finish. I'm 45% of the way through. I went away from the list for a bit and read a few other books. I'm going to make myself finish this last book tomorrow.
I have also compl..."



Good luck!!


message 45: by Sandra (last edited May 04, 2019 07:24AM) (new)

Sandra The Old Woman in a Van (theoldwomaninavan) | 66 comments A long post but I wanted to share my thoughts on this year’s challenge. I tried to diversify my reading beyond the prompts; therefore, I looked for books written by diverse authors and from a range of countries. Many of my books were written by or featured people of color, indigenous people and LBGTQ’s. Algeria was a country I had read little from but Camus, and The Last Summer of Reason was lyrical, foreboding and memorable.

A Thousand Acres was a top read. The Shakespeare prompt was excellent and challenging and brought me to this book which I otherwise would never have attempted. Interestingly, it is set in Iowa, where I grew up; and in the decade I was in my teens. Even though I never lived on a farm, I “knew” these people. The writing and story were deserving of the Pulitzer it won. Reading this book also led me to finally identifying the title of another book I had been seeking for decades- one both I and the daughter of a character in the book both read in high school- Giants in the Earth. The latter was as excellent upon rereading as I remembered. There is no book that compares in its description of the white settlers of the north central plains. This was NOT The Little House.

One prompt, for a book with a sense of place, could have been met by several exceptional books I read for other prompts. Trask transported me to the Oregon coast as it was first settled by whites. The depiction of the indigenous people of that time and region brought the book to life. I am amazed at all the other books I read this year that transported me through time and location: Moloka’i, Days Without End, In the Shadow of 10,000 Hills, Someday I Will Write About This Place, The Glass Palace and The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane are the standouts. The Worst Journey in the World brought me to Antarctica and I “experienced” cold like I never imagined. This book would not have made it onto my reading list without the challenge of this prompt, and it was a gem. I don’t typically read non-fiction adventure, but maybe I will now do so more often. I even traveled to the future and outer space this year with A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet.

I read a fair number of Audible books and Becoming is by far the standout so far this year. I felt like I was having a cup of coffee with the former First Lady - the book was engaging and relevant to any woman.

Non-fiction gems included Being Mortal, Where Do We Go From Here and White Fragility, all books I believe everyone would benefit from reading. The latter ended up one of my real-life book club reads, and several members did not want to read it - and are now giving the book to friends and extolling its content. That is high praise for a book with a very provocative title.

Brown Girl Dreaming made me reluctantly admit that maybe I do like poetry. Year One and A Long way to a Small Angry Planet got me started on two series I am going to pursue.

I mostly read books rated 4 stars and above by Goodreads and in general I agreed. I can recommend almost all the books on my list, but those described above were my favorites. There is only one book I could have done without reading - Frankenstein. It is now checked off my list forever but I will go watch Young Frankenstein again before I ever go back to this gothic melodrama.

Again, many thanks to those who keep this challenge running - I know it takes a lot of time. I am looking forward to voting on next year’s list and will look for some of the sub-challenges to stay connected.

1. ❌A book that was nominated for or won an award in a genre you enjoy James Fenimore Cooper Prize - Historical Fiction The Last Town on Earth
2. ❌A book with one of the 5 W's in the title (Who, What, Where, When, Why) Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?; Who Will Catch Us As We Fall
3. ❌A book where the author’s name contains A, T, and Y Leaving Atlanta
4. ❌A book with a criminal character (i.e. assassin, pirate, thief, robber, scoundrel etc)True History of the Kelly Gang

5. ❌A book by Shakespeare or inspired by Shakespeare A Thousand Acres
6. ❌A book with a dual timeline Winter Garden
7. ❌2 books related to the same topic, genre, or theme: Book #1 Snow Blind
8. ❌2 books related to the same topic, genre, or theme: Book #2 Shoot to Thrill

9. ❌A book from one of the top 5 money making genres (romance/erotica, crime/mystery, religious/inspirational, science fiction/fantasy or horror) New Erotica for Feminists: Satirical Fantasies of Love, Lust, and Equal Pay
10. ❌A book featuring an historical figure The Whip
11. ❌A book related to one of the 12 Zodiac Chinese Animals (title, cover, subject) Horse on cover Jubilee
12. ❌A book about reading, books or an author/writer The Shadow of the Wind

13. ❌ A book that is included on a New York Public Library Staff Picks list Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End
14. ❌ A book with a title, subtitle or cover relating to an astronomical term The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet
15. ❌A book by an author from a Mediterranean country or set in a Mediterranean country Algeria The Last Summer of Reason
16. ❌A book told from multiple perspectives I Liked My Life
17.❌ A speculative fiction (i.e. fantasy, scifi, horror, dystopia) Doomsday Book

18. ❌A book related to one of the elements on the periodic table of elements: The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women
19. ❌A book by an author who has more than one book on your TBR Days Without End
20. ❌A book featuring indigenous people of a country Moloka'i
21. ❌A book from one of the polarizing or close call votes Health or Medicine Happiness: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever AfterBeing Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End

22. ❌A book with a number in the title or on the cover: In The Shadow of 10,000 Hills
23. ❌4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #1 Something Old The Story of Arthur Truluv
24. ❌4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #2 Something New starting anew Year One
25. ❌4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #3 Something Borrowed Half Broke Horses (borrowed from the library)

26. ❌4 books inspired by the wedding rhyme: Book #4 Something Blue I'll Be Your Blue Sky
27. ❌A book off of the 1001 books to read before you die list Half of a Yellow Sun
28. ❌A book related to something cold (i.e. theme, title, author, cover, etc.) The Worst Journey in the World
29. ❌ A book published before 1950: Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?
30. ❌A book featuring an elderly character The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village

31. ❌A children’s classic you’ve never read Bridge to Terabithia
32. ❌A book with more than 500 pages: Becoming
33.❌ A book you have owned for at least a year, but have not read yet Giants in the Earth. I have looked for this book for a couple of decades but found a copy more recently so am using it here.
34. ❌A book with a person's name in the title Trask

35. ❌A psychological thriller The Silent Patient
36. ❌A book featured on an NPR Best Books of the Year list Stay with Me
37. ❌A book set in a school or university The Secret History; Up from Slavery
38. ❌A book not written in traditional novel format (poetry, essay, epistolary, graphic novel, etc): Brown Girl Dreaming
39. ❌A book with a strong sense of place or where the author brings the location/setting to life [book:Trask; One Day I Will Write About This Place: A Memoir

40. ❌A book you stumbled upon Refugee;
41. ❌A book from the 2018 GR Choice Awards: I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer
42. ❌A book with a monster or "monstrous" character Frankenstein
43. ❌A book related to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) [fiction or nonfiction
The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World

44. ❌A book related in some way to a tv show/series or movie you enjoyed (same topic, same era, book appeared in the show/movie, etc.) Same theme as Call the Midwife Outback Midwife
45. ❌A multi-generational saga: The Glass Palace
46. ❌A book with a (mostly) black cover White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism
47. ❌A book related to food (i.e. title, cover, plot, etc.) Summer at the Comfort Food Cafe

48. ❌A book that was a finalist or winner for the National Book Award for any year The Friend
49. ❌A book written by a Far East Asian author or set in a Far East Asian country The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane
50. ❌A book that includes a journey (physical, health, or spiritual) Trekking the Way of St Francis: From Florence to Assisi and Rome; Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal
51. ❌A book published in 2019: The Wedding Guest
52. ❌A book with a weird or intriguing title: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close


message 46: by Joan (new)

Joan Barnett | 1593 comments Sandra wrote: "A long post but I wanted to share my thoughts on this year’s challenge. I tried to diversify my reading beyond the prompts; therefore, I looked for books written by diverse authors and from a range..."

Awesome job! Becoming is my next book to listen to so I'm glad you liked it. I'll be starting that one on Monday!


message 47: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Audiogirl.booking.it (audiogirlbookingit) | 488 comments Love to see why people thought about their favorite reads! I have thousand acres in my list haven’t read it yet. Nice job I still have about 1/2 way to go before I am done.


message 48: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 53 comments Hi all-I’m done! I finished last night. I read in order so that was interesting. Some stats from my read. 7/52 were non-fiction and 45/52 were fiction. Eleven were set in other countries. Favorite nonfiction book was Educated. Favorite fiction was Strange the Dreamer.

This was my first year doing reading challenges and I thoroughly enjoyed this. I think I will read in order again next year. Now I’m going to take some time to read more of series that I read the first of for the challenges I’ve done this year.


message 49: by Pam (new)

Pam (bluegrasspam) | 2568 comments Congrats Lisa!


message 50: by Rose (new)

Rose (rosew77) | 58 comments I finally finished the 52 weeks of books. Yay! i liked the challenge overall -- used a wild card for a psychological thriller substitute since i'd already used The Girl on the Train for another entry -- and couldn't find another to appeal to me.


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