The 2017 Reading Challenge

The 2017 Reading Challenge

Devoted readers and aspiring readers: want to get more out of your reading life in 2017? We’ve got a challenge just for you, and a free kit to help you see it through.

Here on Modern Mrs Darcy, we love reading, but don’t believe it’s a competitive sport. We care about quality way more than we care about quantity. Reading well doesn’t necessarily mean reading more. We know reading is a very personal thing, and your reading list should reflect that.

So this year, we present our choose-your-own-adventure reading challenge. Here’s what to do:

The Modern Mrs Darcy 2017 Reading Challenge. Get more out of your reading life in 2017 with this choose-your-own-bookish-adventure challenge!

1. Choose your list.

Dear reader, what do you want to be different in your reading life in 2017? What do you want more of?

Do you want your books to bring you more fun, or to challenge you more deeply? Are you reading fluff but craving substance, or does your steady diet of Serious Literature have you yearning to lighten up a bit? Has 2016 left you searching for an enjoyable escape, or has it pushed you to get serious about how you spend your downtime?

Choose the path that helps you get where you want to go, whether that means finding the fun in reading again, or stretching yourself with titles of depth and breadth.

For some of you, that path will look like the deluxe plan of all 24 categories. Maybe that’s the path for you.

The Modern Mrs Darcy 2017 Reading Challenge. Get more out of your reading life in 2017 with this choose-your-own-bookish-adventure challenge!

2. Make a plan.

“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” Maybe Eisenhower didn’t have your reading life in mind when he said this, but it absolutely applies. This challenge is simple and doable, but it provides the structure you need to approach your reading list with intention in 2017.

As soon as you sign up, start thinking about what you want to read, and when you’re going to do it. What do you want your reading life to look like next year? What do you want more of? Planning is everything, even though your plan will likely evolve as the year goes on.

3. Track your reading.

This is big: make a way to record what you read and what you thought of it. Make it as simple or complex as you’d like. We’re providing simple printables to track your progress, and I’d recommend taking it a step further and tracking all your reading in the coming year.

If you don’t use a reading journal, now’s the time to start. I use my bullet journal to track my reading these days (and if that interests you, I’m teaching a course on how to do it in January for book club members). I used to use the MMD printable reading journal, free for subscribers. I still update my Goodreads account occasionally because I love to search and sort my titles.

Let’s get started! Click here to join the challenge and get your free kit to see it through in 2017.

Pin your challenge graphic of choice for inspiration and share it with your fellow book-lovers. We’ll revisit the challenge periodically to share what we’re reading. And we’ll be talking all about our titles and encouraging each other in the MMD Book Club.

Browse the book list archives here for reading ideas, and start making your lists. Share this with your fellow book lovers (I’ll be using the hashtags #MMDchallenge and #MMDreading on twitter and instagram @annebogel). But most of all, enjoy the challenge.

I’m looking forward to reading with you all through 2017. This is gonna be fun.

P.S. For ideas on what books to read, check out my picks for the 2017 Reading Challenge. Don’t miss the hundreds of great suggestions in comments!

The Modern Mrs Darcy 2017 Reading Challenge. Get more out of your reading life in 2017 with this choose-your-own-bookish-adventure challenge!

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestEmail this to someonePrint this page


  1. Kelli Bullock says:

    Is there a list of book suggestions for each category yet? I’m having trouble finding some choices for all the categories. I’m crazy and doing both lists.

  2. Colleen says:

    My choice for the category “A Book about Books or Reading” is “The Bad Ass Librarians for Timbuktu” by Joshua Hammer. It’s about librarians protecting ancient books and manuscripts from ISIS. It could also fill the category “A Book about Current Events.

  3. Claire says:

    Not sure how this works. Do I pick a book for every category or just pick ones that I would like? I’m looking forward to this. Thanks.

  4. Lisa B says:

    So excited for this! But I need a little help remembering a title to add to my list…in an early(ish) podcast episode, I remember you recommending a book (series?) about a “literary detective” who solves mysteries through (inside?) books. I wish I had written it down! Any ideas?

    • Barbara says:

      It’s probably this one. The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. Definitely fits the bill and is utterly delightful. It’s a series. The Big Over Easy also by Fforde is pretty good. Happy reading!!

  5. Elodie says:

    Oh great!
    I would like to participate… but in french…
    Thanks for this challenge!
    Perhaps i will try to read in English!!! I hope to succeed in!

  6. Amanda says:

    Thanks for the great challenge! I followed the 2016 one, and it really made me step out of my comfort zone and choose books I was putting off or would have never read otherwise. Your guidance is really appreciated.
    I have a blog – I don’t keep up with enough! – where I log my reading challenge. I look forward to seeing what others are reading as inspiration as I start my challenge.
    Thanks again!

  7. Colleen says:

    I am not sure about the category #diverse books or #own voices author. I am not into hashtags or twitter or anything like that. I was thinking of reading Hidden Figures by Margo Lee Shetterly for this category. Would that work? It is about African American women and mathematicians who help get a man to space. It is written by an African American woman. But I am not sure if it has this hashtag attached to it.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.