2020 Reading Challenges

Reading challenges and readathons can be very hit or miss. But I have discovered a few that really, really work for me. They are fun, they motivate me, they have a great community surrounding them, so of course I’ll be joining again in 2020.

2020 Retellings Challenge

Tracy from Cornerfolds is back with another Retellings Challenge. This was so much fun last year so I definitely want to participate again. I’m going to aim for High Fae (16-20 retellings) but of course, I not-so-secretly hope to get a bingo blackout again!

Here is the excellent bingo card for 2020. There are so many new prompts that already make me scratch my head as to what to read. But I’m sure the Goodreads group will give fantastic recommendations again, and I also look forward to our group reads. This is easily the challenge I am most excited for!

German Myth/Fairy Tale: Kalynn Bayron – Cinderella is Dead
1001 Nights: Diana Wynne Jones – Castle in the Air
Sherlock Holmes: Brittany Cavallaro – A Study in Charlotte 
Debut Author: Joan He – Descendant of the Crane
Goodreads Award nominee/winner: Alexandra Christo – To Kill a Kingdom
Edgar Allan Poe: Cat Winters – The Raven’s Tale
Sirens or Mermaids: Julia Ember – The Seafarer’s Kiss/Andrzej Sapkowski – Sword of Destiny
Jane Austen: Diana Peterfreund – For Darkness Shows the Stars
Set in Space: Yoon Ha Lee – Dragon Pearl
POC Author: Benjanun Sriduangkaew – Mirrorstrike
King Arthur: Kiersten White – The Guinevere Deception
African Myth/Fairy Tale: Jordan Ifueko – Raybearer
Free Space: Juliet Marillier – Beautiful
500+ Pages: Tessa Gratton – The Queens of Innis Lear
Les Misérables: Jessica Brody & Joanne Rendell – Sky Without Stars
Middle Grade/Graphic Novel: Leigh Dragoon – Little Witches
Mulan: Cameron Dokey – The Wild Orchid
Mythical Creature on Cover: Sara Ella – Coral
Villain Origin Story: Gregory Maguire – Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister
South American Myth: Isabel Ibanez – Woven in Moonlight
Author Duo: Cynthia Hand, Brody Ashton, Jodi Meadows – My Lady Jane
Dracula/Frankenstein: Ahmed Saadawi – Frankenstein in Baghdad
2020 Release: Melissa Bashardoust – Girl, Serpent, Thorn
Hades & Persephone: Martine Leavitt – Keturah and Lord Death
Own Voices: Roshani Chokshi – The Star-Touched Queen/S.L. Huang – Burning Roses

New-to-me Black Authors

June 2020: If you’ve been following the news, you know what prompted this challenge. I don’t live in the US but I’ve been watching and listening and learning, and I want to support the community that has given me so much joy. So for the second half of this year, I want to pick up books by 10 new-to-me Black authors. It’s as simple as that. I did the Women of Genre Fiction challenge a few years back and ever since then, I have discovered so many new favorite authors and I’m actually reading more books by women than men. I hope to see a similar trend with this challenge.

  1. Tade Thompson – Rosewater
  2. Tochi Onyebuchi – War Girls
  3. Ebony Elizabeth Thomas – The Dark Fantastic
  4. Akwaeke Emezi – Pet
  5. Kalynn Bayron – Cinderella is Dead
  6. Jennifer Marie Brissett – Elysium
  7. Kacen Callender – Queen of the Conquered
  8. Jordan Ifueko – Raybearer
  9. Micaiah Johnson – The Space Between Worlds
  10. Evan Winter – The Rage of Dragons
  11. Alexis Henderson – The Year of the Witching
  12. John Lewis – March 1-3
  13. Marlon James – Black Leopard, Red Wolf

And just because I want to, here are a few more books by authors I already know but really want to read this year:

  1. Nalo Hopkinson – The Salt Roads
  2. Octavia E. Butler – Kindred
  3. P. Djèlí Clark – Ring Shout
  4. Rivers Solomon – An Unkindness of Ghosts
  5. N.K. Jemisin – The Stone Sky
  6. Octavia E. Butler – Parable of the Sower

Worlds Without End

See the button near the top right? That’s where these challenges hide. Technically, Worlds Without End offers many different reading challenges created by users of the page. I always pick a few of them to participate in but I don’t put a huge effort into finishing them. The two most important ones to me are “New Publications” and “Read the Sequel”, because I want to keep up with new books in any given year, and at the same time I don’t want to forget to continue all those series I’ve started. I am not super ambitious with these challenges, but they make it easier for me to track my reading throughout the year.


2020 Publications:

Goodreads Reading Challenge

I always say I don’t take the Goodreads Reading Challenge all that seriously but it still feels very nice to have read a certain number of books in a year. But because I want to make sure I am able to complete the challenge, I don’t set my goals too high. Last year, I did really well, so I’ll up my goal but I won’t stress myself out over it.
ETA: Well, this Covid-19 thing and the sheer quality of this year’s Hugo finalists made me read a lot more than expected. So why not shoot for 100 books?

  • Books to read: 75 100
  • Books read: 137