Wednesday, December 21, 2011

2011 Reading Challenges Wrap Up!

I'm going to apologize in advance, this is a long post and anyone who reads is all should win a prize! I signed up for 15 Reading Challenges in 2011 and enjoyed them all! I've posted a couple that I have completed so far throughout the year but as I have one more book review to come before year's end and it doesn't make or break any of these challenges, I am going to wrap these up now!

First for the positives! Here are the challenges that I completed successfully in 2011!


Hosted by The Book Vixen, the Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge was a raging success for me! My goal was to read 5 more books than I did in 2010 or a grand total of 80 books in 2011. I blew that number out of the water, reading 96 (it will actually be 97 when the year is over, but who's counting!). 


I will read 5 more than I did in 2010, for a grand total of: 80!
1. This Christmas by Jane Green, Jennifer Coburn and Liz Ireland
2. The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern
3. Awkward Two: Brevity by Various Authors
4. She's Gone Country by Jane Porter
6. The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
8. Velva Jean Learns to Drive by Jennifer Niven
9. Small Wars by Sadie Jones
10. Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler
14. Take a Chance on Me by Jill Mansell
15. Save as Draft by Cavanaugh Lee
17. The Bird House by Kelly Simmons
18. The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker
19. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
20. Diary of an Ordinary Woman by Margaret Forster
21. The Matchmaker of Kenmare by Frank Delaney
22. Mr. Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt
23. Helen of Pasadena by Lian Dolan
25. Dear Mrs. Kennedy: The World Shares it's Grief Letters, November 1963 by Jay Mulvaney and Paul De Angelis
26. Table of Contents by Judy Gelman and Vicky Levy Krupp
27. The Life You've Imagined by Kristina Riggle
28. The Postmistress by Sarah Blake
29. Heart of Deception by M. L. Malcolm
30. The Heights by Peter Hedges
32. A Thread of Sky by Deanna Fei
34. Skinny by Diana Spechler
35. The Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift
36. The Sandalwood Tree by Elle Newmark
37. Wrecker by Summer Wood
38. The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett, and Amanda Pressner
40. Song of the Silk Road by Mingmei Yip
42. The Distant Land of My Father by Bo Caldwell
45. There's Cake in my Future by Kim Gruenenfelder
48. Faith by Jennifer Haigh
49. Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin
50. Knit Two by Kate Jacobs
51. The Winter Ghosts by Kate Mosse
52. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
53. By Fire, By Water by Mitchell James Kaplan
54. Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran
55. The Storm at the Door by Stefan Merrill Block
56. The Tapestry of Love by Rosy Thornton
57. The Silver Boat by Luanne Rice
58. The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin
59. One Day by David Nicholls
60. 29 by Adena Halpern
61. The Alchemy of Chance by Peter S. Brooks
63. Before Ever After by Samantha Sotto
64. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
65. Life from Scratch by Melissa Ford
66. The Madonnas of Echo Park by Brando Skyhorse
67. Let's Take the Long Way Home by Gail Caldwell
68. Just My Type: A Book About Fonts by Simon Garfield
69. Sister by Rosamund Lupton
71. Wedlocked by Bonnie Trachtenberg
72. Bossypants by Tina Fey
75. Emily and Einstein by Linda Francis Lee
76. Already Home by Susan Mallery 
77. The Tudor Secret by C.W. Gortner
78. The Night Circus by Erin Morganstern
79. Holy Ghost Girl by Donna Johnson
81. The First Husband by Laura Dave
82. Her Sister's Shadow by Katherine Britton
84. How Shakespeare Changed Everything by Stephen Marche
85. Sherry and Narcotics by Nina-Marie Gardner
86. The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brow
88. Dracula in Love by Karen Essex
89. What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
90. Leaving Parma by Angie Sarich
91. The Mistress's Revenge by Tamar Cohen
92. A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley
93. The Printmaker's Daughter by Katherine Govier
95. Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright
96.  Dreaming in English by Laura Fitzgerald

Since these were all of the books I read this year, you'll have to wait until my top reads of 2011 to be published next week to find out what my favorite read from this list was!

Hosted by Teresa's Reading Corner, I signed up for the Addictive Level in the Audio Book Challenge which set a goal of reading 12 audio books last year. I had a great audio year and ended up reading 17 audio books total!

1. Velva Jean Learns to Drive by Jennifer Niven
2. Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler
6. The Postmistress by Sarah Blake
7. The Heights by Peter Hedges
10. Knit Two by Kate Jacobs
11. Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran
12. The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin
13. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
14. The Madonnas of Echo Park by Brando Skyhorse
16. Bossypants by Tina Fey
17. The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

If I had to pick a favorite audio book from last year, well, you'll have to wait for my yearly wrap up because there will for sure be an audio feature as this was such a big part of my reading year!

Hosted by Splash of Our Worlds and My Love Affair with Books, the Into the Old World Reading Challenge asked us to read any book that was published before 2009. I love reading older books throughout the year and not just focusing on new books. My goal was to read 5-10 books that fit this bill and I did by reading 9!

1. Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler (2007)
2. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (1847)
3. Diary of an Ordinary Woman by Margaret Forster (2003)
4. The Distant Land of My Father by Bo Caldwell (2002)
5. Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin (2007; org. 1976)
6. Knit Two by Kate Jacobs (2008)
7. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay (2008)
8. A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley (1991)
9. Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright (2005)

If I had to pick a favorite from this list, I would have to choose Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.

Hosted by Betty and Boo Chronicles, Memorable Memoirs Reading Challenge was an obvious choice for me because of my love for memoirs! There were no levels so of course I knocked this one out of the park by reading 16 memoirs this year. Man, I love memoirs!

4. Dear Mrs. Kennedy: The World Shares it's Grief Letters, November 1963 by Jay Mulvaney and Paul De Angelis
6. The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett, and Amanda Pressner
10. Let's Take the Long Way Home by Gail Caldwell
12. Bossypants by Tina Fey
14. Holy Ghost Girl by Donna Johnson
16. Leaving Parma by Angie Sarich

I think my favorite memoir of the year was Bossypants by Tina Fey!

Hosted by Journey to the End of the TBR Pile, the Chick Lit Challenge was an obvious choice for me because of my undying love for Chick Lit! The goal for this challenge is to read at least 8 chick lit books in 2011. I read 15, so yeah I like chick lit!

1. This Christmas by Jane Green, Jennifer Coburn and Liz Ireland
2. The Book of Tomorrow by Cecelia Ahern
3. She's Gone Country by Jane Porter
4. Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler
5. Take a Chance on Me by Jill Mansell
6. Save as Draft by Cavanaugh Lee
7. Helen of Pasadena by Lian Dolan
8. The Life You've Imagined by Kristina Riggle
9. There's Cake in my Future by Kim Gruenenfelder
10. Knit Two by Kate Jacobs
11. The Tapestry of Love by Rosy Thornton
12. Wedlocked by Bonnie Trachtenberg
13. Emily and Einstein by Linda Francis Lee
15. Dreaming in English by Laura Fitzgerald

If I had to pick a favorite chick lit book of the year, it would have to be There's Cake in My Future by Kim Gruenenfelder!

I consider myself to be a bit of an Anglophile so for the second year in a row, I participated in the British Books Challenge hosted by The Bookette. I challenged myself to read 12, and I did great on this one by reading 16!

1. Small Wars by Sadie Jones
2. Take a Chance on Me by Jill Mansell
3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
4. Diary of an Ordinary Woman by Margaret Forster
5. Mr. Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt
7. The Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift
9. The Winter Ghosts by Kate Mosse
10. The Tapestry of Love by Rosy Thornton
11. The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin
12. One Day by David Nicholls
13. Just My Type: A Book About Fonts by Simon Garfield
14. Sister by Rosamund Lupton
15. The Mistress's Revenge by Tamar Cohen

My favorite book from this group would easily be Small Wars by Sadie Jones!

Historical Fiction is one of my absolute favorite genres so I jumped at the chance to join in the fun of the Historical Fiction Reading Challenge hosted by Historical Tapestry. My goal was to read 10 books and I am so pleased to announce that I read 21 books as I really wanted to read more historical fiction this year!


1. The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer
2. Velva Jean Learns to Drive by Jennifer Niven
3. Small Wars by Sadie Jones
4. Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler
5. Diary of an Ordinary Woman by Margaret Forster
6. The Matchmaker of Kenmare by Frank Delaney
7. Mr. Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt
8. The Postmistress by Sarah Blake
9. Heart of Deception by M. L. Malcolm
10. The Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift
11. The Sandalwood Tree by Elle Newmark
12. The Distant Land of My Father by Bo Caldwell
13. The Winter Ghosts by Kate Moss
14. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
15. By Fire, By Water by Mitchell James Kaplan
16. Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran
17. The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin
18. The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
19. The Tudor Secret by C.W. Gortner
20. Dracula in Love by Karen Essex
21. The Printmaker's Daughter by Katherine Govier





My favorite from this group was Small Wars by Sadie Jones!





Sadly, there were some challenges that I was unable to complete in 1 year's time. Here are the one's that I have marked, Challenge Fail!

Hosted by Book Obsessed , the 50 States Reading Reading Challenge was probably one of my favorites of the year. I loved seeing where my read took me through the US. Even though I was unable to read throughout all 50 states, I will still be signing up again for it next year as it was so interesting to see! All in all I read in 18/50 states, or 36% of the states!

1. Alabama - 
2. Alaska -
3. Arizona - Dreaming in English by Laura Fitzgerald
3. Arkansas - 
6. Colorado - 
7. Connecticut - 
8. Delaware - 
9. Florida - 
10. Georgia - Save as Draft by Cavanaugh Lee
11. Hawaii -
12. Idaho - Leaving Parma by Angie Sarich
15. Iowa - A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley
17. Kentucky - 
18. Louisiana - 
19. Maine -
20. Maryland - 
21. Massachusetts - The Postmistress by Sarah Blake
22. Michigan - The Life You've Imagined by Kristina Riggle
23. Minnesota - 
24. Mississippi - 
25. Missouri - The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
26. Montana -
27. Nebraska - 
28. Nevada - 
29. New Hampshire - 
30. New Jersey - Heart of Deception by M. L. Malcolm
31. New Mexico - 
32. New York - The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker
33. North Carolina - Velva Jean Learns to Drive by Jennifer Niven
34. North Dakota - 
35. Ohio - The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown
36. Oklahoma - 
37. Oregon -
38. Pennsylvania - Don't Sing at the Table: Life Lessons From My Grandmothers by Adriana Trigiani
39. Rhode Island - 
40. South Carolina - 
41. South Dakota - 
42. Tennessee -
43. Texas - She's Gone Country by Jane Porter
44. Utah - 
45. Vermont - 
46. Virginia - 
47. Washington - Wanderlust: A Love Affair with Five Continents by Elisabeth Eaves
48. West Virginia - 
49. Wisconsin - 
50. Wyoming - 

If I was to pick a favorite from the above group of books it would have to be The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown. 

I love reading food themed books so I thought the Foodie's Reading Challenge, hosted by Joyfully Retired was an obvious choice. Sadly, I just didn't read enough food themed books this year! I challenged myself to read 12 and I only read half that. 
2. Table of Contents by Judy Gelman and Vicky Levy Krupp
3. Skinny by Diana Spechler
5. Life from Scratch by Melissa Ford
6. Already Home by Susan Mallery 

My favorite from this group would easily be Already Home by Susan Mallery!

I realize that this challenge technically lasts until February 2012 but since a new one has been released that starts in January, I am going to throw in the towel for Caribous Mom Chunkster Challenge! My goal was to read 4. I probably would have gotten there but I didn't quite get there. 

1. The Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift
2. The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett, and Amanda Pressner
3. The Printmaker's Daughter by Katherine Govier

My favorite from this group would have to be The Lady's Slipper by Deborah Swift.


Are you still with me? That wraps it up for this year! Phew. I hope you are doing well with yours!

6 comments:

  1. Hi Leah,

    Whew! I got tired just reading the humungous list of books you have read this year, I am ashamed by the paltry list I have amassed.

    I only did one challenge this year and have already made the decision that I won't be doing any in 2012, I just don't have the time.

    The upside is that I am getting a steady stream of author'publisher requests coming through and I am enjoying the variety of genres which I am being asked to read/review, it is great fun and I am grateful to them all.

    I did smile to myself when I noticed that one of the challenges you failed to complete was the 50 States challenge, I would have thought that one would have been at the top of your list!

    Congratulations on your achievements and enjoy the rest of your week and the holiday weekend.

    Yvonne

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Yvonne! I know, it was an exhaustive post to write up but I figured better that then peter them out one challenge at a time! I am thinking, while I love challenges, I might be a little more selective next year. Sounds like you are getting ready for a fabulous reading 2012!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Congrats on the challenges you finished - you did great!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yep, read the whole thing - except I really didn't but skim the titles. Did you do that without any overlap? I couldn't tell, but I bet you had to at least count the states books in other places, too, yes?

    Congrats! and we still have a few days - I bet you get more than one more done by New Years.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Care - I defintely had some overlap! In pretty much every category but that's ok because they all allowed it :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. I think you did great for The Chunkster Challenge! I hope 2012 is just as successful!

    ReplyDelete

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