In January of 2016, I began the year by issuing myself a new list of reading and video game challenges. Upon the discovery of some fantastic reading apps via my local library, though, the video game challenge ended up being set to the side while I concentrated on, and furthered myself, back into the land of the written word, as well as comics. This is something that I've been meaning to do for sometime. I've written in the past about how much of an avid reader that I was growing up. Unfortunately, throughout my college years, I was reading much less for pleasure, so I'm glad to have finally gotten back to reading for the love of it.

2016 Reading Challenge

2016 Reading Challenge
Mandie has read 1 book toward her goal of 12 books.

Looking back at last year's challenge, I'm pleased to say that, overall, I read/listened to a grand total of 50 books, audiobooks, and graphic novels/trade paperbacks with my original goal beginning at only 12. I tried to follow through on the two challenges that I looked into last year. I all but completed the 2016 Modern Mrs. Darcy Challenge, as I am shy just one book due to not re-reading a single thing throughout the past year.

As a wrap up, though, here's how the rest of the 2016 MMD challenge turned out:

A Book Published This Year: Saga, Volume 6 - Brian K. Vaughn A Book You Can Finish In a Day: A Leaf on the Wind of All Hallows - Diana Galbadon A Book You've Been Meaning to Read: A Breath of Snow and Ashes - Diana Galbadon A Book Recommended By Your Local Librarian or Bookseller: Lumberjanes, Volume 1 - Noelle Stevenson A Book You Should Have Read in School: Chrysanthemum - Kevin Henkes A Book Chosen for you by your spouse, partner, sibling, child, or BFF: You're Never Weird on the Internet - Felicia Day A Book Published before you were born: The Art of War - Sun Tzu A Book that was banned at some point: World War Z: The Lost Files - Max Brooks A Book you previously abandoned: Tasting Beer - Randy Mosher A Book you own but have never read: Two Generals - Scott Chantler A Book that intimidates you: Lakota Woman - Mary Crow Dog A Book you've already read at least once: N/A

As for the Harry Potter Challenge, I read a grand total of four, out of the eight, books that actually fit in within the very specific criteria. The suggestions gave much less leeway than that of the 2016 MMD challenge. I weighed the fact that I was on a roll with my reading against trying to force myself to cater to the challenges. I think that decision turned out for the best.

2017 Reading Challenge

2017 Reading Challenge
Mandie has read 22 books toward her goal of 52 books.
2016's momentum seemed to help me immensely as I rolled into 2017. Towards the end of last year, I finally started working through Marvel's Civil War II (I had been working through a few other TPBs and such, so my comics were put on the back burner for a bit), which gave the push into the beginning of this year. The fact that I'm already 22 books of 52 (my goal for this year) just goes to show that.

In the realm of challenges, though, I hadn't really found one that I wanted to pursue until earlier this evening. I've been an avid follower of Book Riot for a long while now. In all actuality, I would love to be able to write for them at some point. For the time being, though, I enjoy their site, their authors, and recommendations. Today, I found their Read Harder Challenge in my email digest and just had to consider doing it for 2017. I'm already looking forward to this challenge, as they have multiple posts on their site, as well as a GoodReads group in support of it. Additionally, if you finish the challenge and submit it, you have the chance of earning 30% in their online store. What excellent motivation to encourage others to read.

In addition, after researching a bit about the Book Riot challenge, I found that Better World Books has their own challenge, too. From a quick glance over, it looks like quite a few of my already-been-read books in 2017 fit the criteria. Look forward to an update about both challenges, what they require, and what I'm reading to fulfill them.

Current Books in Progress:
America's First Daughter - Stephanie Dray
Erin's Daughters in America: Irish Immigrant Women in the Nineteenth Century - Hasia R. Diner

Current Comics/TPBs in Progress:
Captain America: Steve Rogers, Vol 2: The Trial of Maria Hill - Nick Spencer
The Mighty Captain Marvel, Vol 1 - Margaret Stohl
The Ultimates 2, Vol 2: Troubleshooters - Al Ewing
Spider-Woman: Shifting Gears, Volume 3: Scare Tactics - Dennis Hopeless
Thunderbolts, Volume 2: No Going Back - Jim Zub
DC Comics: Bombshells, Vol 1: Enlisted - Marguerite Bennett