Sunday, January 3, 2016

Book Challenge By Erin 4.0 Picks

When Erin announced her Book Challenge by Erin 4.0 categories at the beginning of December, I immediately started thinking about which books from my ever growing "To Read" list I could use.

And then, like many other things blog related, it took a backseat. Between busy days at work, Christmas shopping, in-law family holiday events, and traveling to spend Christmas with my family in West Virginia, I stopped devoting a lot of time to my blog. As a result, my list for this book challenge was never quite finished.

So today I've finally taken the time to finish and post my list.

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1. A Book, Any Book, That Is At Least 200 Pages Long - 5 pts

This was obviously the easiest category (which is probably why it's only worth 5 points), but, as any book lover knows, these "easy" categories can be deceiving. I mean, how could I possibly choose just one book to fulfill this requirement? In the end, I let the library choose for me: a book I'd literally been waiting for for months finally became available! I may be late to the game, but I'm finally going to read it (and, at 369 pages, it more than satisfies the 200 page requirement)!

My pick: The Martian by Andy Weir

2. A Book That Begins With The Letter "D" - 10 pts

There were several books on my "To Read" list that would be perfect for this category, so I chose one that both Erin and Jana highly recommended.

My pick: Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg

3. A Book With A Four Word Title - 10 pts

If you've been reading my blog for any length of time, you've probably already figured out that I'm a little weird and quirky about certain things. A perfect example of this would be my choice for this category. I knew I could probably use a book with "a," "and," or "the" in the title, but I really wanted to pick a title that didn't use any of those words and still fulfilled the four word requirement.

My pick: What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wiseman

4. A Book With "Mother," "Father," "Son," "Daughter," Or "Child" In The Title (Or The Plural Of These Words) - 15 pts

I've enjoyed some historical fiction in the past, but it's not a genre I usually go out of my way to pick up (especially if the story takes place hundreds of years ago, as is the case with the book I chose for this category). However, if a book sounds intriguing, I'll read it regardless of genre. Several months ago, I found this book on Goodreads, and, despite the mixed reviews, I added it to my "To Read" list. I may regret choosing it since it's a little over 500 pages long, but I guess that will just add to the "challenge" aspect.

My pick: The Bloodletter's Daughter by Linda Lafferty

5. A Book From Amazon's "Most Popular Authors" List (And The Author Must Be New To Me) - 20 pts

I searched through the entire list, and there were a ton of authors I'd never even heard of. However, I decided to go with an author I've heard of but never read in an effort to cross off another book from my "To Read" list. (And I couldn't resist adding this one since everyone has been raving about it!) As I'm writing this, Kristin Hannah is number 33 on the list.

My pick: The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

6. A Book Set In Any Country In Asia - 20 pts

After reading Out earlier this year (the review can be found here, if you're interested), I was eager to read more of Natsuo Kirino's work. And, since her novels take place in Japan, this category gave me the perfect excuse to pick up another of her books.

My pick: Grotesque by Natsuo Kirino

7. A Book With A Season ("Winter," "Spring," "Summer," Or "Autumn"/"Fall") In The Title - 25 pts

Since I'm starting this challenge in the winter, I thought it fitting to choose a book with "winter" in the title. There were a few books on my "To Read" list that would work, but I chose a book that has been on my list for a long time and was readily available at my library.

My pick: Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

8. A Book That Will Make Me Laugh From This Buzzfeed List - 30 pts

I've already read a few of the books that made this list, but I was happy to find a book from my "To Read" list on there as well. Hey, the more books I can knock off my 'To Read" list, the better! (Though it's not like it won't constantly be adding to it throughout the year!)

My pick: This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper

9. A Book That Is A Friend Or Family Member's Favorite (Or The Favorite Book Of Another Challenge Participant) - 30 pts

I asked a few people in my life which books they'd consider to be "favorites," but I had to ultimately choose a book I actually thought I might enjoy. (Otherwise I knew I'd never finish this challenge!) The book I chose is one of Allison's (a close friend of mine since the first grade) favorites.

My pick: The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards

10. A Book Published The Year I Was Born - 35 pts

1984 was a surprisingly dismal year for literature. (At least in my opinion.) When I was searching Goodreads for a book for this category, I realized I've already read most (if not all) of the books published that year that I think I would actually enjoy. I wound up choosing a book I'd never heard of (though it's apparently very famous). I have no idea if I'll like it, but maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised.

My pick: Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney

Hopefully I can manage to complete this challenge and the Semi-Charmed Winter Book Challenge. Wish me luck ... I seriously need to finish 8 books by the end of the month in order to complete the Semi-Charmed challenge, and, for me, that's a lot!


  1. I love your list for so many reasons. I love that you tell us why you chose a particular book. I loved The Nightingale. I think Did You Ever Have a Family is a book that you will feel all the feels. I remember choosing a book a challenge or two ago that was 899 pages, being intimidated by it, but I ended up thinking it was the best book I read the entire challenge (I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb). I, too, want to read Wintergirls. And, I have a bonus round where participants can select another book from each category, and I encourage selecting what others have read. Grotesque is already my selection for Asia.
    Thanks for joining!

  2. Bright Lights Big City was a great movie and since it's based on a book, well, then you know it'll be a good book, too :)

    I'm glad you chose Did You Ever Have a Family. It's not a happy book, but so, so good. And Erin's assessment of I Know This Much is True is spot on. I read it YEARS ago and it's one of those books that just sticks with you.

  3. good luck! yay the martian! wintergirls is on my list for one of my challenges, don't remember which one. i'll be interested to see what you think of the memory keepers daughter, i read that one years ago.

  4. We both chose The Nightingale as our book written by an author from Amazon's top 100 list! I've heard her name several times, and everybody that's read her books swears about how good her books are, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity to read one! From what Kristen and Erin have both said, we'll need to have the tissues ready!

  5. We didn't choose any of the same books for the challenge! So crazy since I feel like the categories are so specific. I look forward to following along and seeing what you do/don't like :)

    I do what I want.