29 Sep 2007

PS, I Love You - Cecelia Ahern

I bought this book when I was in London last and finally finished it last night. It's beautiful and heartbreaking. Do read it, but have tissues handy. PS, I Love You has been an amazing read for the Fall Into Reading challenge.

26 Sep 2007

The Whitcoulls Challenge - DONE

Since I'm hosting this challenge, I thought I'd better actually sign up for it too ;) The list is subject to change if I'm unable to find some of the books at the library, and I make no plans of which book to read which month :-P

My list:
My Sisters Keeper - Jodi Picoult, The Other Boylen Girl - Philippa Gregory, A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth, The Pilot's Wife - Anita Shreve, Sophie's World - Jostein Gaarder

The 888 challenge - DONE

This challenge is rather daunting, so I wavered for a long time whether or not I wanted to sign up for it. It was really tempting though, and what finally pushed me over the edge was the fact that I can change categories and/or titles at any time, so if I need to tweak it to fit another challenge or if I can't find all these books at the library, it's no big deal.

Read eight books in eight categories in the year 2008 (8 "overlaps" are allowed, so 56 unique titles).

My problem with this challenge is although I read a LOT I seldom plan ahead what I read, as I don't like it to get too rigid. 56 books in a year won't be a problem, but will I still feel like reading them when next year rolls around. We'll see, and if not, rule 5 here says that I can change books at any time, so hopefully it'll all work out :-D

After "great and deep brain things inside my head" this is the list I came up with:
  1. Children / YA - DONE
    1. Mary Poppins (Library)
    2. Winnie-the-Pooh (Own)
    3. Charlotte's Web (Library)
    4. Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh (Library)
    5. The Ordinary Princess by M.M. Kaye
    6. Ballet Shoes (Own)
    7. Mathilda (Own)
    8. Meet the Malones (Own)
  2. Historical Fiction (will double for "Back to History") - DONE
    1. Such a Time as This (Own)
    2. The Last Jew (Own)
    3. Pope Joan (Own)
    4. Cross-Stitch (Own)
    5. Water for Elephants (Library)
    6. The Red Tent (Own)
    7. The Scarlet Spy (Own)
    8. The Clan of the Cave Bears (Own)
  3. TBR (owned unread books) - DONE
    • Behaving Badly - Isabel Wolff
    • 20.000 Leagues Under the Sea - Jules Verne
    • Looking Forward - Marcia Willett
    • The Colour Purple - Alice Walker
    • Robin Hood and his Merry Men - Unknown
    • Dragonflight - Anne McCaffrey
    • Last Chance Saloon - Marian Keyes
    • Seven for a Secret - Victoria Holt
  4. Rereads - DONE
    1. f2f (Own)
    2. Eclipse
    3. Dragonsinger (Own)
    4. Nothing Lasts forever
    5. Cross-Stitch
    6. Mathilda
    7. A Breath of Snow and Ashes
    8. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
  5. Armchair Interviews - Done
    1. The Stormcaller (Own)
    2. Such a Time as This (Own)
    3. Between the Sheets (Own)
    4. Anatomy of a Boyfriend (Own)
    5. Seduced by a Spy (Own)
    6. Evacuation Plan
    7. Mrs. Darcy's Dilemma (Own)
    8. Hollywood Crows (Own)
  6. Non-fiction - Done
    1. A Diary of a Young Girl (Own)
    2. Wild Swans (Own)
    3. Long Walk To Freedom (Library)
    4. The Alpine Path (Own)
    5. The Hiding Place (Own)
    6. Celebration of Discipline (Own)
    7. Stolen Lives (Own)
    8. Those Who Trespass Against us
  7. Top 100 - DONE (will double for the Whitcoulls challenge)
    1. Wild Swans (Own)
    2. The Poisonwood Bible (Library)
    3. The Red Tent (Own)
    4. Anybody Out There? (Library)
    5. Life of Pi (Library)
    6. The Stand (library)
    7. Long Walk To Freedom (Library)
  8. Medical Madness - Done
    1. Sue Barton, Student Nurse (Own)
    2. Sue Barton, Senior Nurse (Own)
    3. Sue Barton, Visiting Nurse (Own)
    4. Sue Barton, Rural Nurse (Own)
    5. Sue Barton, Superintendent of Nurses (Own)
    6. Sue Barton, Neighbourhood Nurse (Own)
    7. Sue Barton, Staff Nurse (Own)
    8. Nothing Lasts forever (Own)

The Whitcoulls Challenge

Whitcoulls was my favourite bookstore in New Zealand. Every year they published the "Top 100 List" as chosen by New Zealanders. Everybody can nominate their three favourite books, and the 100 books with most votes made the list. Unlike many other of these lists, this one represents what people actually read. I've managed to find the list for three years - 1998, 2002 and 2006.

I've been wanting to host a challenge myself, and this seems like the perfect opportunity. Read Your Way Through The Whitcoulls Top 100 List.

When: From November 1st, 2007 to November 1st, 2008.
What: Pick 12 books from either or all of the lists linked above, and read one a month (or - if you're feeling daring - pick 12 from each and read 3 a month!! But that's only for the obsessed ;) )
Why: To broaden our horizons and because it's fun of course!

I can't figure out how to use Mr. Linky, so just leave a comment with either your list or a link to your blog post and you're in! :-D

Have fun!

25 Sep 2007


This is not a real challenge as much as a reminder to myself that despite all the wonderful challenges out there, I need to remember to make time and place for spontaneous reading as well.

No pre-made list here. It will grow as I go, adding the reviews to it as I read them. And these books can ONLY be some I read 'just4thehelluvit' - not for any (other) challenge, not for book clubs and not for reviewing.

Let's see how large that list grows in a year.

24 Sep 2007

Casual Reading Challenge

I know I said I wouldn't add more challenges for the time being, but once you see the twist of this one, you'll understand why I couldn't help myself.

WHEN: October 1, 2007 -to- October 1, 2008

  • Make a list of books you've been wanting to read (from your collection, the library, etc)
  • read books from this list between the dates specified
  • THE TWIST! You do NOT have to have read every book on your list by the end of this challenge!
The idea is to have crossed of at least some of the titles on your list by the end of the challenge, and to feel good that you have been able to do so! There is absolutely NO PRESSURE to complete the entire list, so it can be as long as you want!

On List of Bests I have a list of 100 books I want to read before I die. Some of these are already crossed off, but there are 70-something left still. This will be my list for the Casual Reading Challenge - with lots of cross-overs to other challenges. For this one I won't post my list here as it'd be far too long for the sidebar, but you can follow my progress via the link above.

23 Sep 2007

Bibliography Challenge - Completed

I know, I know. I said I'd be good and not sign up for any challenge I came across, but I love books and I love books about books so... I couldn't help myself! Besides, cross-overs are allowed and it might spur me to finally reread "The Never-Ending Story" - something I've been meaning to do for 5 years now!

This is the Bibliography Challenge. The Challenge is to read 3 Books about Books. This challenge starts October 1st. And finishes December 31st. Fiction or Non Fiction, Crossovers are acceptable.

My picks:

The Book of Lost Things - John Connelly

"Rikki-Tikki-Tavi" was so short that I had time to finish yet another book - The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly. I've been reading it for awhile, but since it was so very different from what I expected (even though I have no clue what I actually did expect) it's taken me awhile to get through it, but today I sat down to read the last 100 pages so I could strike it off my list :-)


The Fall Into Reading 2007 Challenge started today, and I've finished my first book! Rikki-Tikki-Tavi by Rudyard Kipling. A quick read (only 43 pages) and a very cute story for kids :)

Back To History - DONE

Okay, I probably should start to limit myself about now, but this challenge doesn't start until 2008 and sounds absolutely fascinating. I LOVE historical fiction, but read far too little of it, so this is a great chance for me to read (or reread) a bit more of it.

The challenge is to read one historical non-fiction, or historical fiction novel a month. They can't all be of the same type (all novels, all biographies, all memoirs etc.) but otherwise no limits. I haven't completely figured out my list yet, but as it runs for all of 2008 that doesn't matter really :)

For now it looks something like this:
but I hope to find more inspiration from Mr. Linky on the original challenge site.

21 Sep 2007

Anybody Care for 2nds? - Completed

In October-December read three books by authors you've only read one other book by.

"I know many of us have discovered several new authors as we have participated in the gazillion challenges we joined this past year (Joy said endearingly!) and I also know that we have stumbled upon some books that we thought were really great and some maybe not-so-great. Well, here's the perfect excuse opportunity to explore 3 new-found authors that you would love to go back for a second helping. I hope you'll join me."

My picks:
  • "Flowers In The Attic" by Virginia Andrews (have read "My Dear Audrina")
  • "The Amateur Marriage" by Anne Tyler (have read "Digging To America")
  • "The Junglebook" by Rudyard Kipling (have read "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi")

  • Amy Tan (have read "The Joy Luck Club")
  • Agatha Christie (have read "Murder in the Orient Express")
  • Valerie Martin (have read "Mary Reilly")
  • George Orwell (have read "1984")
  • Sarah Dessen (have read "Just Listen")
  • Charles Dickens (have read "A Christmas Carol")
  • Isabel Wolff (have read "Rescuing Rose")
  • Inkspell - Cornelia Funke (have read nothing yet but will have read "Inkheart" by next month)
  • John Irving (have read "The World According to Garp")
  • The Marvelous Land of Oz - L. Frank Baum (have read "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz")

20 Sep 2007

Fall Into Reading 2007 - Completed

Fall Into Reading 2007 has no set guidelines and is a casual, low-pressure challenge. The point is simply to provide motivation to read, and to provide an opportunity for all of us to set goals when it comes to our personal reading. All I have to do is make a list of books I'd like to read (or books you'd like to finish!) this fall.

The timeframe of this challenge is September 23rd-December 21st. Since that's 13 weeks exactly, I figured I'd pick 13 books. A book a week should be doable.

These are the books I ended up choosing:

TBR Reading Challenge - Completed

I'm not actually an official participant of this challenge as I didn't find out about it until July. I thought it was a brilliant idea though, so I made my own half-year TBR (To Be Read) Reading Challenge, and will be joining in on the official one next year.

The rules are very simple:
For this challenge you should....
** Pick 6 books - one for each month of the second half of 2007 - that you've been wanting to read (have been on your "To Be Read" list) for 6 months or longer, but haven't gotten around to.

** Then, starting July 1, 2007, read one of these books from your list each month, ending December 31, 2007. :o
My books are/were (as we're already half-way through):


I got this blog a couple of years ago, in order to be able to comment on another blogger's blog because they'd disabled anonymous commenting, so I had to sign up. Ever since then I've tried to figure out what to do with it.

Over the years I've tried several things, but somehow updating it just never got to be a regular thing. So now I've gotten a new idea - a book blog! Yes, I already have one for my book reviews at LiveJournal (http://bogormen.livejournal.com - the link is also shown in the sidebar), but there are some features LJ just doesn't have, which blogger does - like totally customizable sidebars (as long as you know html) and the ability to embed flash - so I thought, let this be my book challenge blog!

Reviews will still go to Bogormen although I will post links here, but the descriptions of the different challenges I sign up for, the lists and my progress will all go here.

Why do I sign up for all sorts of different challenges when I read a lot anyway? Beause I'd like a bit of method behind the madness. I have a to-read list a mile long and at least two shelves filled with books I own but have never read, so instead of the happy-go-lucky method of reading I've used until now, I thought I'd actually make a conscious effort to work my way through those - hopefully discovering a bunch of new favourites along the way.