Friday, January 4, 2013

2012 Challenges Wrap-up

In 2012 I finished all of my challenges! And unlike in previous years, I really wasn't scrambling to do so. I finished my last challenge on Dec. 11 and my first one in June! In fact, I am showing that I read THIRTEEN books over 450 pages (Chunksters) although, had I needed to use them all for the challenge, I'm sure a few would have dropped off because of notes or appendixes or other pages that are listed in Goodreads' page counts, but I wouldn't count towards a Chunkster challenge. I also read one extra non-fiction non-memoir book, and I have three books that I probably could count towards the Immigrant Stories Challenge. The only challenge where I didn't read any more than I signed up for was the Aussie Challenge, because I really had signed up for what I thought was my maximum. It was awesome to read all those books before and after my trip to Australia - they really made an impact on my visit, both as I knew more about the history, and also about the culture. Below are my 2012 challenges, my thoughts on them a year ago, and the books I read that fulfilled them.

January 1, 2012 - December 31, 2012
A chunkster is 450 pages or more of adult literature. A chunkster should be a challenge. No Audio books in the chunkster. You don't need to list.

The Plump Primer - this option is for the slightly heavier reader who wants to commit to SIX Chunksters over the next twelve months.

Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak, translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky - 675 pages
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry - 975 pages
The Fatal Shore: The Epic Of Australia's Founding by Robert Hughes  - 603 pages
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough - 692 pages
The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters - 512 pages
Balance of Power by Richard North Patterson - 602 pages
6/6 as of 9/9/12 DONE!
January 1, 2012 – December 31, 2012

The Non-Fiction Non-Memoir Reading Challenge will exclude memoirs, which seem to be the most read type of nonfiction. Instead, we'll focus on learning about a variety of different topics and discovering new facts. The challenge will run from January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012.

What Counts:
- Books can be any format (bound, ebook, audio) but must be written for adults or young adults.
- Books can cover many different topics, including science, technology, religion, sociology, business, biography, politics, economics, history, food, art/design, etc.
- How-to, self-help and travel books are permitted, as long as you actual read them cover to cover, and don't just use them as a reference.
- Crossovers with other challenges are permitted.

What Does Not Count:
- Reference books, cookbooks and instruction manuals that are not meant to be read cover to cover
- Essays and articles
- How-to, self-help or travel books that are not read cover to cover
- Memoirs, journals and autobiographies
- Books written for children
- Re-reads don't count since the point is to learn something new

My level:
Bachelor's Degree - 15 nonfiction books
The non-memoirs was intriguing to me since that's definitely my favorite genre, but I do think of myself as a more general non-fiction reader. I checked my stats for 2011 and I read 13 books I'd consider general nonfiction (although a couple are tricky as to whether they are really memoirs or not.) But I do like general nonfiction and I have a couple of big ones on my must-read list for 2012 already, so I am going to try to tackle this. And I'll go for the Bachelor's Degree level! I'm very glad audio books count because most of my audio listening is nonfiction.

Strength in What Remains by Tracy Kidder
Lost to the West: The Forgotten Byzantine Empire That Rescued Western Civilization by Lars Brownworth
The Killer of Little Shepherds: A True Crime Story and the Birth of Forensic Science by Douglas Starr
Lincoln's Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness by Joshua Wolf Shenk
Everything I Needed to Know About Being a Girl I Learned From Judy Blume by Jennifer O'Connell
The Girls from Ames: A Story of Women and a Forty-Year Friendship by Jeffrey Zaslow
Outcasts United: An American Town, a Refugee Team, and One Woman's Quest to Make a Difference by Warren St. John
Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand
The Fatal Shore: The Epic Of Australia's Founding by Robert Hughes
Bad Land: An American Romance by Jonathan Raban
Triangle: The Fire That Changed America by David von Drehle (audio)
Guns, Germs and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond
The Dig Tree: The Story of Burke and Wills by Sarah Murgatroyd
The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson
15/15 as of 12/7/12 DONE!!
2012 Aussie Author Challenge
Whether you are a patriotic Australian, an aspiring or armchair tourist or simply an international reader wanting to discover some talented new authors with like-minded readers, the 2012 Aussie Author Challenge could be for you!
Challenge Period: 1 January 2012 – 31 December 2012
OBJECTIVE Read and review books written by Australian Authors – physical books, ebooks and audiobooks, fiction and non-fiction!

My Challenge Level:
DINKY-DI – Read and review 12 books by at least 6 different Australian authors
‘Dinky-Di’ is Australian slang meaning ‘true or genuine’.

I did this challenge 2 years ago at the Tourist level. I am going to Australia in the summer of 2012 (woo hoo!) so this is a natural as I'll be reading up, and I'm going to sign up for the Dinky-Di level. It might be a little hard for me to achieve here in the states but I expect I'll purchase a few books while in Australia. After all, if I (still no ereader for me) try to bring all the books for the horribly long flights and two weeks, I'll be over my weight limit in no time. If I only bring books for the flight there, I should be able to finish this challenge without too much trouble.

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
Foreign Correspondence: A Pen Pal's Journey from Down Under to All Overby Geraldine Brooks
Tomorrow, When the War Began by John Marsden
True North: A Memoir by Jill Ker Conway
The Fatal Shore: The Epic Of Australia's Founding by Robert Hughes
The Secret River by Kate Grenville
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough
The Last Anniversary by Liane Moriarty
The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas
Eucalyptus by Murray Bail
The Dig Tree: The Story of Burke and Wills by Sarah Murgatroyd
The Dead of Night by John Marsden
12/12 as of 11/14/12 DONE!

From Books in the City:
For the second year, I am proud to host the Immigrant Stories Challenge. As I said in the post announcing the inaugural Immigrant Stories Challenge last year, I am the child of immigrants and have always been drawn to immigrant stories in my reading. As I started to pay attention to the theme, I realized it is actually very prevalent in literature. Across many genres, books features immigrants from and to many nations in addition to the stories of their children as they try to fit in.

The Challenge
The only requirement of the challenge is that the books read for it include an immigrant story. The immigrants can be coming to or from any country - expand your horizons!
All types of books are eligible - fiction, non-fiction, short stories, audiobooks, e-books.
Re-reads are acceptable as are cross-overs with other challenges.
The dates for the challenge are January 1, 2012 - December 31, 2012.

My level:
Just off the boat: 1-3 books

I noticed this challenge last year (even suggested a couple of titles for it) and it intrigued me again this year but I was trying to sign up for fewer challenges. But then I realized that the very first book I am reading in 2012 qualifies, and one other book I am definitely reading this year also qualifies and darn it, I am up for the challenge! But I am signing up for Just Off the Boat, 1-3 books.

Strength in What Remains by Tracy Kidder
Outcasts United: An American Town, a Refugee Team, and One Woman's Quest to Make a Difference by Warren St. John
The Fatal Shore: The Epic Of Australia's Founding by Robert Hughes
3/3 as of 6/21/12 DONE!


B said...

Wow great work! You participated in a good amount of challenges in 2012.

Jo @ Booklover Book Reviews said...

I am so glad you got a lot out of participating in the Aussie Author Challenge Carin.

Booksnyc said...

Thanks for joining the Immigrant Stories challenge in 2012!

Julie said...

Congrats on completing the Non-Fiction Non-Memoir challenge! Hope you enjoyed all the books you read!