2016 Book Riot Read Harder Challenge

One of my 2016 resolutions will be to add some diversity to my reading. Looking back on this year, I see a definite tendency to go back to old friends (romance, steampunk, urban fantasy) whenever I’m in a reading rut. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but there’s a whole lot of books out there that I’m missing out on!

To that end, I’ll be doing the 2016 Book Riot Read Harder Challenge. It’s 24 reading tasks over 12 months ranging from “Read a food memory” (piece of cake!) to “Read a book about politics, in your country or another (fiction or nonfiction)” (oh dear!). If doing the challenge is anywhere near as fun as pulling together the list of books has been, this should be great!

  1. Read a horror book – Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
  2. Read a nonfiction book about science – Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach
  3. Read a collection of essays – A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again: Essays and Arguments by David Foster Wallace
  4. Read a book out loud to someone else – Interstellar Cinderella by Deborah Underwood and Meg Hunt
  5. Read a middle grade novel – Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
  6. Read a biography (not a memoir or autobiography) – Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg
  7. Read a dystopian or post-apocalyptic novel – Zone One by Colson Whitehead
  8. Read a book originally published in the decade you were born – The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  9. Listen to an audiobook that has won an Audie Award – The End of the Affair by Graham Greene, read by Colin Firth
  10. Read a book over 500 pages – A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
  11. Read a book under 100 pages – The Turn of the Screw by Henry James
  12. Read a book by or about a person that identifies as transgender – Nevada by Imogen Binnie
  13. Read a book that is set in the Middle East – The Arab of the Future: A Childhood in the Middle East, 1978 – 1984 by Riad Sattouf
  14. Read a book that is by an author from Southeast Asia – Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho
  15. Read a book of historical fiction set before 1900 – Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
  16. Read the first book in a series by a person of color – The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
  17. Read a non-superhero comic that debuted in the last three years – Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick
  18. Read a book that was adapted into a movie, then watch the movie. Debate which is better – The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
  19. Read a nonfiction book about feminism or dealing with feminist themes – Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay
  20. Read a book about politics (fiction or nonfiction) – Religion for Atheists: A Non-Believer’s Guide to the Uses of Religion by Alain de Botton
  21. Read a book about religion (fiction or nonfiction) – All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren
  22. Read a food memoir – Relish: My Life in the Kitchen by Lucy Knisely
  23. Read a play – The Real Inspector Hound by Tom Stoppard
  24. Read a book with a main character that has a mental illness – Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman


  1. I just finished Notorious RBG — it’s a good one! I had been planning on reading Frankenstein for the horror challenge, but your post reminded me I have a copy of The Haunting of Hill House on my shelf waiting to be read.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s