2012 TBR Pile Challenge and Finishing the Series Challenge

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A challenge that encourages me to tackle the massive stacks of books on my To Be Read shelves, I'm in. Adam at the Roof Beam Reader is hosting the 2012 TBR Challenge. You can sign up to join here and see a complete list of the details.

The basic idea is to pick 12 books (and two alternates) that you've owned for at least a year, but have not yet read. I decided to pick a variety of books, including classics, modern lit, fantasy and sci-fi. I also included a particular Salinger book in honor of our host. It's a travesty that I haven't read it yet, but I'll admit, I've been saving it because it's my last unread book by the author.

Here is my complete list ...

1) Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell (finished March 2012)
2) The Loved One by Evelyn Waugh (finished April 2012)
3) Raise High The Roof Beam, Carpenters by J.D. Salinger (finished June 2012)
4) Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglas Adams (finished July 2012)
5) Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne Truss (finished April 2012)
6) Bleak House by Charles Dickens (finished March 2012)
7) Silver on the Tree by Susan Cooper (finished January 2012)
8) The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood
9) Affinity by Sarah Waters
10) The Quiet American by Graham Greene
11) The Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy (finished May 2012)
12) Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson (finished February 2012)

1) Nobody's Fool by Richard Russo
2) That Hideous Strength (Space Trilogy) by C.S. Lewis (finished July 2012)

Here are the details ...
The Goal: To finally read 12 books from your “to be read” pile (within 12 months).
1. Each of these 12 books must have been on your bookshelf or “To Be Read” list for AT LEAST one full year. This means the book cannot have a publication date of 1/1/2011 or later (any book published in the year 2010 or earlier qualifies, as long as it has been on your TBR pile – I WILL be checking publication dates). Caveat: Two (2) alternates are allowed, just in case one or two of the books end up in the “can’t get through” pile.
2. You must write an original review/response (it doesn’t have to be anything fancy) for each book, to help us ensure you are actually completing the books you say you are.
3. The link you post in the Mr. Linky below must be to your “master list” (see mine below). This is where you will keep track of your books completed, crossing them out and/or dating them as you go along, and updating the list with the links to each review (so there’s one easy, convenient way to find your list and all your reviews for the challenge).

I'm also going to attempt the Finishing Series Reading Challenge hosted here. I'm going for the top level, 3 or more series.
Level 1 - Complete 1 series.
Level 2 - Complete 2 series.
Level 3 - Complete 3 or more series.
I'd like to complete the following series...

The Dark is Rising series - Silver on the Tree by Susan Cooper
The Wolves of Mercy Falls series - Forever by Maggie Stiefvater
Anne of Green Gables series - Rainbow Valley and Rilla of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery
The Space Trilogy - That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis
*Photo by moi.


Alex (The Sleepless Reader) said...

- Read Travels With My Aunt this year and thought it was... ok.
- Cloud Atlas and Miss Pettigrew are great (just ignore the political incorrectness of the latter).
- Also want to read Scarlet Pimpernel and then watch the TV series.
- Also have Eats, Shoots.. in the TBR

Sandy Nawrot said...

I'm all for these types of challenges, but I must support my best bud James (Ready When You Are, C.B.) with his TBR Dare. I guess we could incorporate both! With James, you just read your own books from Jan through Apr. This is what set up my excellent reading year in 2011.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Alex - Thanks for the tips. I just swapped Travels With MY Aunt out for another Graham Greene before I made my list official. I'd rather read something great, than something just ok.

Sandy - Somehow I hadn't even heard of that one! I'll have to check it out.

JReiss said...

You will be disappointed with That Hideous Strength. It's like the last season of Gilmore Girls; the series is better if you pretend it doesn't exist.

Roof Beam Reader said...

Woo hoo! Glad you're joining us!

I love the Salinger, obviously (are you also going to be reading Seymour: An Introduction, or have you read that one already? They're usually published as companion novellas...) and I see a lot of The Scarlet Pimpernel on these lists this year - I should have added that, as it's sitting on my shelf (with Cloud Atlas), of course.

Eats, Shoots & Leaves is great too! Fun for grammar buffs. :)

Greg Zimmerman said...

Oh, man - I would soooo move Nobody's Fool off the Alternates list! It's incredibly, incredibly good!

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

JReiss - I've held off on that one for so long because I'd heard that, but I just want to finish the trilogy.

Adam - Yes, I'm definitely reading Seymour too, my copy has them published together. I'll probably update the list to show the complete title.

Greg Zimmerman - That's good to hear. I love Russo's work, but limit myself to one of his books a year. I've been looking forward to this one for a long time.

B said...

Good luck with this one! That's quite an impressive TBR list. (I am so scared of Bleak House.)

Kate Maxwell said...

Loved the Scarlet Pimpernel - Sink me!

Would love to get my hands on Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day!

Allie said...

Great picks! I'm actually not that familiar with most of your picks. I haven't read that Salinger title either, but it is one my TBR list. The only one I have a definite opinion on is Bleak House. I REALLY didn't care for it, but then again, I'm not the biggest fan of Dickens.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Brenna - I'm intimidated by that one as well, but I'm excited about it too.

Kate - I've heard very little about Scarlet Pimpernel. For some reason it's just like the Three Musketeers in my mind.

Allie - I've heard very mixed reactions, but I think I've enjoyed Dickens more than you have in the past, so we'll see.

BookQuoter said...

Good luck on this challenge. Would love to know which will be hits.

Melanie said...

I have to say i read Cloud Atlas this year and really loved it. Dirk Gently is fun, as is The Scarlet Pimpernel. Have you read the rest of the Susan Cooper series? I loved the first 3 books but haven't finished them yet.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Melanie - I have read all the rest of the Susan Cooper series and can't wait to read the final one!