2021 Reading Challenges

Another year, another set of reading goals!

As always I’m trying to keep it relatively simple to start but expect to add on a few as the year progresses. But since so much about the upcoming year is still uncertain, I really have no idea how much I’ll actually be able to read.

Graphics associated with each challenge were created by the host(s).

Last updated September 1, 2021

Goodreads Reading Challenge

PROGRESS: 204 / 200
COMPLETED IN AUGUST

Yeah, I somehow surpassed 400 books in 2020 (!!!), but that’s not the kind of pressure I want to put on myself going into a new year; it’s psychologically much easier for me to increase than to decrease my goal later on.Β 

MAY UPDATE: Raised from 150 to 200.

Beat the Backlist Bingo

PROGRESS: 52 / 52
COMPLETED IN JULY

In the past few years, I’ve found that the majority of the books I read are backlist, so I don’t feel the need to set a number goal. But I’ll still be aiming to complete the bingo prompts, because I love reading bingos.

βœ“ more than one author – Dear Haiti, Love Alaine
βœ“ dragons OR lizards – The Last Hero
βœ“ it’s on a ship! – Peter and the Starcatchers
βœ“ purple cover – This Is the Circle
βœ“ set in a major city: NYC – Behold the Dreamers
βœ“ book you forgot you had – Year of Yes
βœ“ caused a major book hangover – Middlegame

βœ“ multiple points of view – Sourcery
βœ“ book you’re giving another chance – Palimpsest
βœ“ quest to find lost/hidden object – Gray Wolf Island
βœ“ chapter title page has art – The Secret Commonwealth
βœ“ kept you up late reading – An Accusation
βœ“ picked by a friend/trusted reviewer – Heartless
βœ“ non-human character – Fledgling

βœ“ first line is less than 10 words – The Wise Man’s Fear
βœ“ banned book – Go Ask Alice
βœ“ cover features your favorite color prominently: (navy) blue – The Midnight Library
βœ“ all about music – Absolutely on Music: Conversations with Seiji Ozawa
βœ“ character lets out a breath they didn’t realize they were holding – Invisible Ghosts
βœ“ genre you never/rarely read: romance – Truly, Madly, Royally
βœ“ standalone – If It Makes You Happy

βœ“ lost royalty – Ace of Shades
βœ“ cover with your country’s flag colors: red, white, blue – Get Your Sh*t Together
βœ“ written in letters or diary entries – Ella Minnow Pea
βœ“ book centered around politics – What Happened
βœ“ features a carnival or circus – We Walked the Sky
βœ“ snake on the cover – Girl, Serpent, Thorn

βœ“ on the Indie Bestseller list in 2020 or earlier – Kitchen Confidential
βœ“ historical with a twist – The Girl in the Tower
βœ“ character has a dream scene – Storm of Locusts
βœ“ set in autumn – Ballad: A Gathering of Faerie
βœ“ based on non-Greek/-Roman mythology: DinΓ©tah (Navajo) – Trail of Lightning
βœ“ non-binary protagonist – The Empress of Salt and Fortune
βœ“ a book with illustrations – Let’s Make Ramen!

βœ“ WTF plot twist – The Dragon Republic
βœ“ second book in a duology – Magic in the Mix
βœ“ non-fairytale retelling – The Weight of Feathers
βœ“ from your 2020 backlist TBR – Owls and Other Fantasies
βœ“ book where the woods/forest are important – The Queens of Innis Lear
βœ“ black and white – A Promised Land
βœ“ novella – The Slow Regard of Silent Things

βœ“ person on the cover – Hunted
βœ“ anthology – Devotions
βœ“ has a map – The Poppy War
βœ“ book about bones OR “bone” in the title – The Bone Shard Daughter
βœ“ good book, bad cover – How the GarcΓ­a Girls Lost Their Accents
βœ“ brings out the geek in you – Because Internet
βœ“ bought it for the cover – When You Ask Me Where I’m Going

βœ“ book written in verse – The Opposite of Innocent
βœ“ includes a 2nd person POV – Not for Nothing
βœ“ author has a book releasing in 2021 – Malinda Lo – Adaptation
βœ“ mentions a pineapple – The Last Continent

POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

PROGRESS: 50 / 50
COMPLETED IN AUGUST

βœ“ A book that’s published in 2021 – Tales From the Hinterland
βœ“ An Afrofuturist book – The Deep
βœ“ A book that has a heart, diamond, club, or spade on the cover – Ace of Shades
βœ“ A book by an author who shares your zodiac sign – Year of Yes
βœ“ A dark academia book – How We Fall Apart
βœ“ A book with a gem, mineral, or rock in the title – The Map of Salt and Stars
βœ“ A book where the main character works at your current or dream job – Beach Read
βœ“ A book that has won the Women’s Prize For Fiction – An American Marriage
βœ“ A book with a family tree – Legendborn
βœ“ A bestseller from the 1990s – Hannibal
βœ“ A book about forgetting – The Bone Shard Daughter
βœ“ A book you have seen on someone’s bookshelf – Middlegame
βœ“ A locked-room mystery – And Then There Were None
βœ“ A genre hybrid – One Last Stop
βœ“ A book set mostly or entirely outdoors – Across the Green Grass Fields
βœ“ A book with something broken on the cover – The Library of the Unwritten
βœ“ A book by a Muslim American author – The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali
βœ“ A book that was published anonymously – Go Ask Alice
βœ“ A book with an oxymoron in the title – Big Little Lies
βœ“ A book about do-overs or fresh starts – Dear Haiti, Love Alaine
βœ“ A magical realism book – The Mirror Season
βœ“ A book set in multiple countries – The Midnight Library
βœ“ A book set somewhere you’d like to visit in 2021 – Convenience Store Woman
βœ“ A book by a blogger, vlogger, YouTuber, or other online personality – The Anthropocene Reviewed
βœ“ A book whose title starts with Q, X or Z – (The) Queens of Innis Lear
βœ“ A book featuring three generations – How the GarcΓ­a Girls Lost Their Accents
βœ“ A book about a social justice issue – The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
βœ“ A book set in a restaurant – Kitchen Confidential
βœ“ A book with a black-and-white cover – A Promised Land
βœ“ A book by an indigenous author – Trail of Lightning
βœ“ A book that has the same title as a song – Adaptation
βœ“ A book about a subject you are passionate about – Because Internet
βœ“ A book that discusses body positivity – If It Makes You Happy
βœ“ A book found on a Black Lives Matter reading list – I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness
βœ“ A book in a different format than what you normally read (audio + Kindle) – Know My Name
βœ“ A book that has fewer than 1k reviews on Amazon or Goodreads – Law School Confidential
βœ“ A book you think your best friend would like – Sourcery
βœ“ A book about art or an artist – Steal Like an Artist
βœ“ A book everyone seems to have read but you – The Poppy War
βœ“ Your fave prompt from a past PS challenge:Β story within a story – The Marrow Thieves

Advanced Prompts
βœ“ The longest book on your TBR – The Wise Man’s Fear
βœ“ The shortest book on your TBR – TED Talks Storytelling
βœ“ The book on your TBR with the prettiest cover – Invisible Ghosts
βœ“ The book on your TBR with the ugliest cover – Foolish Hearts
βœ“ The book that’s been on your TBR for the longest – Of Bees and Mist
βœ“ A book from your TBR you meant to read last year but didn’t – Owls and Other Fantasies
βœ“ A book from your TBR you associate with a fave person, place, or thing – The Ring of Solomon
βœ“ A book from your TBR chosen at random – Hunted
βœ“ A DNF book from your TBR – Palimpsest
βœ“ A free book from your TBR – The Secret Commonwealth

Books and Tea Reading Challenge

PROGRESS: 13 / 12
COMPLETED IN JUNE

βœ“ hexed with color: ask a friend for a color, read a book with a cover to match – red – Red Dragon
βœ“ hidden creations: an author’s lesser known book / a lesser known author –Β This Is the Circle
βœ“ stardust: a book you’ve owned since 2016 – The Invisible Man
βœ“ awesome, of course: book by author of color –Β Fledgling
βœ“ in Satan we stan: a book with 666 pages or more – The Wise Man’s Fear
βœ“ full of pride: LGBT+ books and authors –Β Adaptation
βœ“ highly recommended: a recommendation from a friend – The Summer of Jordi Perez
βœ“ a fresh look: a new to you diverse read –Β How the GarcΓ­a Girls Lost Their Accents
βœ“ star’s the limit: travel to another country or world –Β Dear Haiti, Love Alaine
βœ“ new kids on the pub(lisher): 2021 debut author –Β The Sword in the Street
βœ“ opposites attract: swap a TBR entry with someone – Heartless + The Travelling Cat Chronicles
βœ“ small stories: an anthology or book that’s shorter than most – Devotions

Cross-Country Reading Challenge

PROGRESS: 15 / 51

(You can check out the full post, linked above, for the challenge details and titles that I’ve read!)

  • What reading goals do you have for 2021?
  • Which challenges and readathons, if any, are you participating in?
  • Do you have any titles picked out (whether for a prompt or monthly TBR or just to read soon), or do you prefer to leave your options open?

14 thoughts on “2021 Reading Challenges

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