My Monthly Reading Challenge

I have a confession to make.

I haven’t felt much like reading these days. Crazy, right? With the COVID-19 pandemic going on, it has been easier to entertain myself by binge watching television shows and movies (Tiger King – check. Harry Potter movie marathon – check and double check) than crack open a book.

I’m giving myself some grace though, and I encourage you to do the same. Don’t throw in the towel on reading, but if you need to take a break, then take one. The books will still be there when you are ready.

Another thing I have noticed is that I enjoy reading print books more than ebooks. That is a tough thing to do when access to print books is more difficult these days. My original plan was to get the books I didn’t have at the library (ie To Kill a Mockingbird and three Margaret Atwood books), but since the library is closed, you will see some changes to my original Reading Challenge list. More on that later.

With those caveats, here is my current status on the book challenge:

Completed books:

A debut novel – According to Plan: Novel – Kimberly Kessler

A book outside your (genre) comfort zone – Redcap (Folklore Series Book 1) – Larry Yoakum III

A book by a local author – The Secrets We Keep – Lara Prescott

A book published in the decade you were born: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH

A re-read: The Giver – Lois Lowry

A classic you didn’t read in school: Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton

The details: 

The Giver by Lois Lowry is one you love or you hate. There doesn’t seem to be an in-between. In Jonas’ world, everyone is given “sameness” and is under strict supervision. In this type of environment, the reigning power has more control over what is happening. This book got me thinking about our post-COVID-19 world. While I see some benefit to having strong centralized government, the loss of personal choice is frightening.

My original pick for a classic I didn’t read in school was To Kill a Mockingbird. I had to return the book since the library closed, so I found Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton online at Project Gutenberg. While it was not a print copy, the ebook is short and kept my interest, despite being written in 1911. I took it as a cautionary tale of what happened to women at the turn of the century.


Non challenge books:

I thought I would share what else I have been reading and a little bit about why I chose the books.

Cognitive Dominance by Mark CcLaughlin, MD and Shawn Coyne – You might recognize Shawn’s name from last month. He edited The Threshing by Tim Grahl. This nonfiction Big Idea book is told from the perspective of a neurosurgeon who has to deal with fear.

What’s next?

Back to Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. Wish me luck. I’m starting over for the third time. Let’s see if the third time really is the charm.

If you are reading along, let me know how the challenge is going for you! You can send me at or comment below!

Until next time…

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash