My Monthly Reading Challenge

It’s been two months since I shared my progress on the reading challenge.

Last month was full of book release news. My Best Decision – Sara’s Story, launched on June 4! Thanks again to those of you who have read the book and posted reviews. It’s always great to hear what you think! And if you haven’t posted a review, feel free to post it wherever you bought the book or over at Goodreads.

As a reminder, I am doing The Modern Mrs. Darcy 2020 Reading Challenge. The goal is to read 12 books in a variety of categories. Here is the recap.

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 Fromm by Edith Wharton
  • Three books by the same author: Gayle Foreman – If I Stay, Where She Went and one more TBD

The details:

I was recently introduced to Gayle Foreman by a fellow friend/writer. My friend warned me to have a box of tissues when I read them and she was right. The two books I read, If I Stay and Where She Went, follow the story of Mia, a high school student whose life is tragically changed one morning and Adam, her boyfriend, who only wants the best for her. If I Stay is told from Mia’s perspective and Where She Went from Adam’s. I ended up reading these stories straight through one weekend.  The dialogue was sharp and entertaining. Both books take place in a day with flashbacks that give great insight into the characters. I will be reading more Gayle Foreman, not just to finish this challenge, but because she is really good!

Non challenge books:

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

Amish Vampires in Space by Kerry Nietz – As crazy as this title sounds, it is actually a good genre-mashup, which is what the author set out to write. I’m about halfway through the book and I can see how readers who enjoy sci-fi and post-apocalyptic adventures would like this. Neither of these are my go to genres so I’m won’t be reading the rest of Peril in Space series. Book 2 is Amish Zombies From Space and Book 3 is Amish Werewolves of Space. The books are well written, but I think I will have maxed out on outer space for a while.

The Sand Sea by Michael McClellan – This is an epic fantasy that comes out at the end of June. I’m on an advance review team and got the book before its official release. I also had a chance to listen to an interview with the author. It is a well-written, easy-to-follow story with great character development. One caveat: I am not an epic fantasy reader. The length of the book (the ebook was over 1200 pages) and level of description aren’t exactly in my wheelhouse. That being said, I love the miniplot structure (multiple characters with separate but overlapping plots) and how it shares how different characters experience and process the same event.

What’s left?

I still need to find books in the following categories:

  • A book recommended by a source you trust: Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel was my original pick, but I just can’t get into it. Anyone out there have any suggestions?
  • A book in translation: Convenience Store Woman – Sayaka Murata – Now that the library is open again, I will put my name on the list for this one.
  • A book nominated for an award in 2020: Again, any suggestions?
  • Three books by the same author: Gayle Foreman here I come!

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