The 2016 Reading Challenge.

Devoted readers and aspiring readers: this list is for you if you love to read (or want to read more) but don’t believe reading is a competitive sport. If you need structure in choosing your books but don’t want to be pinned down. If you want to stretch a bit instead of forever reading the same author/genre/plot line.

For the MMD challenge, read 12 books in 12 different categories in 12 months. It’s simple and doable, but it provides the structure you need to approach your reading list with intention in 2016.

Make 2016 your best reading year yet with this reading challenge. It’s simple and doable, but provides the structure you need to approach your reading list with intention in 2016.

The 12 categories are practical and flexible. They’ll bend to fit your TBR list, but they’ll also challenge you to explore new territory, revisit old favorites, and finally read those books you’ve been putting off for years.

Make sure you track the books you’re reading: Download the printable to track your progress.

If you don’t use a reading journal, now’s the time to start. I use a good old-fashioned paper reading journal (I made my own printable journal to suit my needs, and you can get your free copy here), but I still update my Goodreads account because I love to search and sort my titles.

I’m also continuing last year’s group Pinterest board for the reading challenge for inspiration and motivation. To join the board, follow me on Pinterest (or Pinterest won’t let me invite you). Then leave a comment below with your Pinterest email address. (If you’d rather not leave your email address in comments, email me at modern mrs darcy (at) gmail (dot) com.) (If you participated in 2015, you’re already in: no action required.)

Let’s get started! Pin the challenge graphic for inspiration and share it with your fellow book-lovers. We’ll revisit the challenge periodically to share what we’re reading.

Join the Pinterest board, 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 2016. This is gonna be fun.

Are you in? What are you most looking forward to reading in 2016?

P.S. Click here to see MY picks for the Reading Challenge.


Leave A Comment
  1. Jeannie says:

    These are great criteria. Still, I think my first 2016 reading challenge will be making it through all the amazing books that just came in for me at the library in the past 2 weeks: The Lake House (Kate Morton), Dear Sugar (Cheryl Strayed), Out of Sorts (Sarah Bessey), and Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity (Steve Silberman). I also got Lorilee Kraker’s book Anne of Green Gables, My Daughter, and Me for a Christmas present. So, see you in June or thereabouts…. 😀

  2. Jami says:

    I’m so glad you are doing this again! I just finished my 2015 Challenge on Sunday and had so much fun with it. Twelve is the perfect number. Thanks, Anne!

  3. Katrina says:

    Every time you post a picture of the colorful children’s set on the right, I drool. How I s the binding/covers/craftsmanship on those books? (Likewise on the Jane Austen set?)

    In this new year, I’ve resolved to send snail mail again. I ordered the Flow Book for Paper Lovers to get me started!

    Last year I read tons of middle grade books so I could make better recommendations to my fourth grade class. (The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller completely changed my approach to teaching reading.) This year, my
    main focus is the classics that have been on my to-read list! (With a smattering of genres on the side.)

  4. Caroline says:

    I really love the 2015 challenge and added a couple of books I wouldn’t have otherwise made time for because of it. Definitely looking forward to this challenge! Love the categories!

  5. Ariel says:

    For 2015 I checked off every book on this challenge when I was reading for the 52-book popsugar reading challenge. I’m not doing another big challenge like that for 2016, but I haven’t decided yet whether I want to do this small one.

  6. Hannah Beth Reid says:

    I laid out some of my plans for reading in 2016 last night and I think many of them will fit these categories! Now if I can get some of our book club picks to line up, it’ll be easy.

  7. Lindsay says:

    Yay! I found your blog too late in the year to get on board with 2015, so I’m pumped to be able to join the 2016 challenge. So many good books to read!

  8. Meghan says:

    YAY. So excited! I finished about 50% last year, but some of my favorite posts were the ones where you blogged about each category. I really hope you do that again! This year I’m trying to get my BFF to do it with me (we read books together all the time anyway!) so maybe I’ll actually finish 🙂

  9. I’m in! I am looking forward to reading my books on writing as I get focused on writing again, as well as my home magazine subscriptions! But very much looking forward to reading new reads, and stretching myself out of my box of regular reads.

  10. Kelli says:

    Perfect timing ~ I’m finishing the 2015 challenge today! This has been such a great thing – it got me to read some really great books this past year that I never would have chosen otherwise. Very excited to get going on this one!

  11. B J says:

    I’m already doing a Classics Challenge for 2016, because I am not a classics kind of reader and am trying to broaden my horizons. Take a look at this challenge at to see the monthly categories. I think I’m going to read Emma for January. I would love to do this one too. Find me at [email protected]. In 2015 I did a Snagged at the Library challenge and read almost 100 books from the library. My goal for 2016 is to read some of my own books from my shelves and my Nook/Kindle. Looking forward to more recommendations from you, Anne, and the other readers here.

  12. Dawn says:

    I have so many books on my ‘to read’ I am sure if I follow this challenge it will get me through some of them. Looking forward to this challenge.

  13. Susan in TX says:

    Looking forward to doing this again. As for what I’m most looking forward to, I don’t even know how to answer that – there are too many. Just a few sitting on the shelf are The Lake House, The Bronte Plot, Dead Wake, and Being Mortal.
    Happy Reading!

  14. I’ve been trying really hard to read through books I own (but often get sidetracked by goodies from the library). As for books I’m looking forward to next year, there are a number of fantastic middle-grade novels coming that I’m especially excited about. Here are a few spring titles:
    Paper Wishes — Lois Sepahban (January 5)
    Sweet Home Alaska — Carole Estby Dagg (February 2)
    The Remarkable Journey of Charlie Price — Jennifer Maschari (February 23)
    The Key to Remarkable — Natalie Lloyd (February 23)
    Hour of the Bees — Lindsay Eagar (March 8)
    The Charmed Children of Rookskill Castle — Janet Fox (March 15)
    Counting Thyme — Melanie Conklin (April 12)

    It’s going to be a great year for children’s literature!

  15. Sonya says:

    Hi Anne,

    Love the list! Would it be possible to make it a printable pdf that I can print off and put in my planner to remind me of the categories throughout the year?


  16. Yara says:

    I’m a moody reader so sometimes I am not as intentional as I want to be. Hopefully, this challenge will help me make better choices, since I haven’t accepted the fact that I will not be able to read every book on my “to read” list before I die.

  17. Gillian says:

    Exactly what I’m needing this year! I have the goal to read every single day in 2016 (because, unfortunately, reading is something I convince myself I ‘don’t have time for’ but tv is not…), and I can’t wait to supplement it with this. So excited to be sharing on Pinterest and Instagram. [email protected]

  18. Terri says:

    I’m excited to join the 2016 Book Challenge. I followed the 2015 Challenge without actually doing it; I thought I didn’t have enough time. Well, my Goodreads self-challenge for 2015 was to read 45 books this year. I exceed that by 4 books. I guess I do have the time! My daughter, my daughter-in-law and I are starting a “book group” and we’re using your Challenge to pick a book each month.

    BTW, I read your Free Kindle Books for today. The only Agatha Christie I ever read was also And Then There Were None. My mom was an avid Christie reader, but I never got into it.

    I follow you on Pinterest, so don’t know if you need my pinterest url, but here it is:

  19. Donna says:

    Hi Anne!
    I am so excited.:) If I am already on the 2015 reading challenge board, I’m good to go, right? I shared my winter 2016 reads on the blog last week.
    I’m so excited to explore new genres!
    In 2016, I’m most excited about reading Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson – a book I’ve been meaning to read.
    A few 2016 releases I’m looking forward to reading:
    The Crooked Heart of Mercy by Billie Livingston (publication date: January 5)
    The Expatriates by Janice Y. K. Lee (publication date: January 12)
    The Travelers by Chris Pavone (publication date: March 8, 2016)

  20. Aoife says:

    Did this last year unknown to myself – can’t wait to start 2016’s offering! Thank you so much, I’ll be featuring my progress on my blog from time to time too.

  21. Marina says:

    Fun challenge! This list may not be structured enough for my brain but I’m definitely going to figure out some type of challenge for myself. 2016 will be my third year doing a Goodreads reading challenge and I’m excited to make a new list for next year. Thanks for the inspiration.

  22. Amy says:

    Count me in!! 🙂 This challenge sounds just right for me! Downloading your reading journal and heading to Target tomorrow to buy a cute binder for it!
    Loved listening to you on the RAR podcast!

    Oh…and here is my email for the Pinterest board….
    kempfyre21 @ yahoo dot com.

  23. Rosemary Murphy says:

    That sounds like a great plan. I already well ahead on the the Category for reading what i didn’t read as a child. My son has a huge book collection and i read a book a night to him. My husband just got me the last book in the Divergent Series which is fours story cant wait to crack it open. I kinda think its funny with the rout 12 books in 12 months not including my son i read roughly 3 books a month from Mystery to Fiction and everything thats in between Im a visual reader. i love books that are detailed that i can really sink my teeth into.. and that i know i will pick it up again and again.. I am always asking people for there recommendations you never know there may be a book out there that i shy away from just by the title but i always love a good read.. I am looking forward to this challenge

  24. Stephanie says:

    I was in desperate need of a new reading challenge for this coming year, thanks! The “I’ll read at least 100 books” challenge I always do has become to easy and also I found myself trying to hit a number and not enjoying what I was reading as much.

  25. Tracy Stoller says:

    I loved last year’s challenge and look forward to this one. I am also doing a more personal challenge of reading/finishing a list books I already own. This has become a bad habit of mine in recent years and I am trying to change it.

  26. Stephanie says:

    I’m thinking about trying the Rory Gilmore challenge this year. Last year my Goodreads goal was 75 books and I think I’m ending in the 120s. I’d love to connect on Goodreads! I’m also thinking I need to read more classics – I’ve only read half of the Austen I’d like to and am currently finishing Jane Eyre for the first time (I blush to admit)….

  27. Jo Yates says:

    I’m looking forward to the 2016 Reading Challenge. Really enjoyed the 2015 and reading books I might not have read otherwise. I’m also going to create a reading journal, and I am giving myself another challenge also: each month to read a book from a Dewey Decimal main category (000s in January, etc.) I should be able to read at least 2 books per month!

  28. Anna says:

    Excited about books for the new year. I already have a long list of books that I’m currently reading, or started to read, stopped, but still want to finish. Then it continues with other categories. 🙂

  29. Monica says:

    This is one I will definitely do! I’ve decided to lessen my reading challenge load this year because I love to read, so having a number to hit has been stressing me out for the past year or so. This, however, will give me more motivation to read different things and it’s less intense. Thanks so much for doing this every year! I’m glad I can participate in 2016. I already have ideas for most of these!

  30. Gracey says:

    I’m going to join and follow along with my blog. I don’t belong to Pinterest and don’t plan on joining….its another time suck, I don’t need…..but I have an email and a blog and will check in…

    • Anne says:

      Pinterest wouldn’t let me add your user name so I sent an invite to this email address. Let me know if that doesn’t work and we’ll figure it out.

    • Anne says:

      I’ll blog through the categories in order, one per month (and will have plenty of banned books suggestions!) Feel free to read them in any order that works for you.

      • B J says:

        Thanks! I just think I’d like to do a book published this year, later in the year, although one I would like to read is being published in January, I’d like to let a few more books come out first before doing that one.

  31. Jennifer says:

    I’m excited to start this year’s reading challenge! I found your site a few months back and really enjoy it and your reading list challenge is such a fun way to diversify my reading. I’m not sure what book I want to start next but I downloaded a bunch on my kindle and am ready to beat last year’s goal! (I managed 52 books out of my 55 goal)

    [email protected]

  32. Quenby (Gaijinmama) says:

    I can7t say no to a good challenge! I’m not on Pinterest, but I’m very active at Goodreads so I will subscribe to this post and join the Goodreads group. Is that OK?

  33. Jeanette says:

    I’ve been looking for a good reading challenge for 2016. I’m in. Do we need to start at the top of the list or is it our choice?

  34. Heather says:

    This looks like a great, attainable, interesting challenge (I hate the crazy long ones that make me feel tired and defeated before I ever get started!). I just downloaded _The Magicians_ by Lev Grossman, which I’ve been meaning to read for at least a year now, so it’s a perfect beginning. Looking forward to seeing everyone’s choices!

    • Anne says:

      It wouldn’t let me add you so I sent an invite to this email address. Let me know if that’s not the right one and we’ll get it straightened out.

  35. Kathy Grey says:

    I’m looking forward to re-reading The Secret Garden, a favorite from my childhood. Also looking forward to The Book Thief. Afraid to set my sights further than that — don’t want to overwhelm myself! Love your list, and I’m excited to get back into my first love — reading!

  36. Julia says:

    This is such a cool idea. Our library’s adult summer reading program was a reader’s bingo and it had a similar concept – I discovered that short stories are great antidotes for a short attention span or busy brain that cannot focus on a novel and that science fiction isn’t always obscure and boring . . . Look forward to participating here and shaking up my normal repertoire.

    [email protected]

  37. Shari says:

    Hi Anne,
    I would love to be a part of your 2016 Book Challenge. It is a fun list and I’m excited to read along with you all!

  38. My friend linked me to this challenge and we started a Facebook group to keep up with our progress, share with and invite others and talk about the books they read!! Thanks for hosting! I be blogging my reads too!

  39. Erika says:

    I had a great time quietly playing along in 2015! I hope to actually pin and post as I complete this challenge in 2016 🙂 I know that for the 2015 challenge you posted about the challenges in order, which I loved, because I was able to follow along with my own selections and add to my TBR list. This leads me to ask if “a book published this year” means a book published in 2015 or 2016? Thanks!!!

  40. Carl says:

    Looking forward to the reading challenge! Reading “To Kill A Mockingbird” as the book I should have read in school.

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  42. Amanda Sue says:

    Well considering I hopped on Twitter to beg you to do it again in 2016, so I could redeem my pitiful efforts, I’m obviously in. hehehehe

    I also made a brand new blog for reading challenges this year… I’ve been DYING to blog about books, but didn’t feel like it meshed well with my main site, so now I have a brand new book blog. I’m so happy!!!!

  43. Karen says:

    I think I’m going to give this a try. I like how you have the categories much better than the one I attempted to try for 2015 (and ended up not completing even though I read quite a few books last year). I’m excited to try this challenge! One of the previous commenters asked about the category for a book published this year wondering if that’s for 2015 or 2016. I was wondering the same thing. I know what I would pick if it’s 2015. 🙂

    • Anne says:

      2016! Don’t worry: you have almost the whole year to figure out what to read, and I’ll have plenty of suggestions for coming books this week. 🙂

      • Looking forward to your book suggestions. I’ve been thinking about various books for the challenge. My youngest daughter (7yo) is a voracious reader and so I read a good bit of children’s books both pre-reading and as read-alouds. I like that a number of the categories in this challenge are compatible with that! I also have jotted down several books I’d like to read for myself. I have heard a lot of good things about Quiet by Susan Cain and have added that to my list of books to read this year. Being an introvert myself, I am looking forward to reading this book. 🙂 For the category of a book that intimidates me, I think I would probably choose Les Miserables. It was a book that my oldest daughter was skeptical about reading when she was a junior in high school and it turns out that she loved it. It ended up being one of her favorite literature reads that year. She has also recommended that I read Frankenstein. So that’s on my list for the category of book chosen for you. I’m not on pinterest; but I do blog and so will try to get a post up this week about the challenge. 🙂

    • Anne says:

      Pinterest wouldn’t let me add your user name to the board so I sent an invite to this email address. Let me know if that doesn’t work and we’ll figure it out.

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  45. Terri says:

    I’m excited about this reading challenge. I didn’t do well last year, but I’m hoping this year will be different. I am scheduling time for reading this year instead of waiting until I happen upon time to read. I got three e-books and 2 regular books for Christmas that I’m going to read this month!

    • Anne says:

      Pinterest wouldn’t let me add your user name to the board so I emailed an invite to this address. If that’s not right let me know and we’ll figure it out.

  46. Lily Luty says:

    I’m in, getting my reading focus back after a long period of depression and looking forward to the challenge! My pinterest is @liwwwwwwwwwwww (sorry can’t get the link as on the app but I’ve followed you!)

  47. Regina says:

    Add me as well, please. [email protected]
    Just one question – is the first book on the list the January challenge? If so, can the book be one published in the last year? can I do the challenge in any order?


    • Anne says:

      Read a book published in 2016! I’ll have ideas for you next week. You can do the challenge in any order, but I’ll be blogging through the categories in the order of the list, one each month.

  48. Michelle says:

    I told myself I was stopping with the challenges I found already, but I don’t think I can pass this one up. It looks fun! thisquietmorning @ gmail dot com

  49. Pam B says:

    Hiya!!! I’d like to join the pinterest group. My email is playamom57 at yahoo dot com. I did the Goodreads challenge last year and ended up reading 70 books. I’ve been a bookworm since first grade and would be lost without the library. Thanks for having this. Blessed be, hugs!!! Pam

  50. Laura says:

    I have got off to a good start with the Challenge this year.I have already read Animal Farm by George Orwell and The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien,and I have started Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie.I hope to average one book a week.I have started a list on Pinterest- will add more books I will read as I finish them.I have used your templates for a journal,and my tablet has lots of books ready to go!

  51. Samantha Stone says:

    Last year with goodreads i made a goal to read 5 books. I didn’t get to read any in 2014 so i thought 5 was a good start. I ended up reading 19 and am so proud of myself and really enjoyed it. I read all sorts. But this gives me some great ideas on how to keep things different. My goal this year is to beat last year and get 20 books read, starting with Little Women. I have reviewed some of your blogs and really enjoy a lot of what you have to say. Thank you for spending the time to do this.

  52. My book: “Run Gently Out There”
    We cheat and include all books purchased or received in December as Christmas books. My current stack:

    The Sixth Extinction : Elizabeth Kolbert
    The Flight of the Nez Perce : Mark H. Brown
    In Pursuit of the Nez Perces : Linwood Laughy
    H Is for Hawk : Helen Macdonald
    Brave Men : Ernie Pyle
    Runner : Lizzy Hawker
    The White Cascade : Gary Krist

    Cod : Mark Kurlansky

  53. Alyssa Dahlberg says:

    So we just sign up here?
    If so, count me in. Where do we put what book we’re reading for each challenge? Thanks

  54. Megan says:

    Already made my list of books for this challenge, and will be reading your list as well. My list has a few books with film adaptions that my cinephile friend has been meaning to watch so this way he can finish his film challenges too.

    Megancosman at gmail dot com

  55. Tiffany says:

    Excellent book list. My goals this year is to attack my NetGalley list. I was approved for so many and went nutso but didn’t get to read them. So I’m going to read the list and publish my reviews, even if they’re a year late!

  56. MarDee Spurgeon says:

    I am going to be reading Anne, spark of joy, wild money and harmony black. I am currently ready Ghost Story and love it. Reading my addiction and I love the movie that plays in my mind as I read.

  57. Ellie Colver says:

    A book published this year – The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin (3rd in the trilogy)
    A book I previously abandoned – The Famished Road by Ben Okri
    A book I have already read at least once – Gone with the Wind

    sign me up for the challenge please: [email protected]

  58. P.J. Coldren says:

    I just retired and have about 35 linear feet of books I haven’t read yet – this challenge will inspire me to explore the stacks. Thank you!

  59. Judy says:

    I’m in! A book I have been meaning to read: The Power of One
    A book I previously abandoned: The Red Tent
    A book I own but have never read: The Kite Runner

  60. Kimberley Kilcommons says:

    I started my 2016 challenge! I reread The Giver by Lois Lowry, which spurred me into reading the Quartet. Though geared to YA, the series was thought provoking for my 50+ years. I will count these as my Read in a Day. The book I will Complete is London, by Edward Rutherfurd, a daunting book at over 1,100 pages. My Banned book will be I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou, one I have been very curious about. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley, is the Book Before I Was Born. Not my usual reading, but classics make me feel good! Gone With The Wind, by Margaret Mitchell, the Book I Own, But Have Never Read. I don’t know why, as I love the play and movie. Eeks! I see I have droned on! The rest will be a surprise!

    • Anne says:

      Pinterest wouldn’t let me add your user name so I sent an invite to this address. Let me know if that doesn’t work and we’ll figure it out.

  61. Valerie Blackmer says:

    I’m reading Start of the Sea by Joseph O’Connor. I’m going to stay the Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg when that’s finished. I think that I have more books than I can possibly ever read.

      • Laura says:

        I know!I’ve surprised myself too!I have always loved reading and have always read books quickly,but haven’t made the effort to just sit still and read for a good number of years.That’s why this challenge has motivated me to start doing just that,and now I can’t stop!Thank you Anne for re awakening my love for reading by putting this challenge,and your blog out there.xx

      • Laura says:

        Also,meant to say that I have extended the challenge so I am aiming to read at least one book a week.I know I am of to a flying start but life will start to get in the way at some point!

  62. Pat says:

    Hi, I just joined ePantry and received my first shipment. So glad I discovered this through Modern Mrs. Darcy’s Reading Challenge. I have a book that is called Scarlett, that is a sequel to GWTW and am looking forward to reading it this year for sure. I also just “pinned” a recommended book, “Before Green Gables”, I think that will be fascinating. I’d love to add to my already-extensive library by winning the 12 books!

  63. Holly says:

    I’ve picked up a book that intimidates me, one that I should have read in high school, and one I’ve put down multiple times: The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Can I check all three boxes? LOL. Great reading plan. I’m inspired!

  64. Tanis Woods says:

    I would love to join your challenge! I have books lined up for some categories already, One that intimidates me is definitely “A Game of Thrones” one I should have read in school will be “A Catcher in the Rye” One published before I was born, (my husband suggested the Bible, insinuating that I was so old that would be the only book available!) but I think I will pick “The Bell Jar” Previously Banned will probably be “The Satanic Verses” book that I have put aside will probably be “Shogun”, read half and just stopped for some reason, I don’t know why!

  65. Angie Robertson says:

    I love reading challenges 🙂 The book I want to highlight is a book that spans several categories on the challenge list: War and Peace. My brother gave me a copy of the book for Christmas because it is his favorite book. He says that as I love a good novel, this book is the novel of all novels. I have previously tried to read the book and abandoned it. As an English major, I should have read this book as an undergrad. Thank you for giving me another reason to enjoy this book 🙂

  66. Jaime Southwick says:

    Great Challenge! I’m in!! New to your blog- via read aloud revival podcast! Loved what you had to share on reading with kiddos and best of all making time for us Mamas to read!!

  67. Bonnie Lungren says:

    Excited to join this Challenge!!! I know for sure that on my 2016 challenge list I will read:
    Victor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning (Book published before I was born)
    Jeanette Wall’s The Glass Castle (Book I’ve been meaning to read)
    … the others are “to be determined”!!!
    Sounds like fun, though!!!!

  68. Melanie Gibbs says:

    This is a great idea! I’m in! [email protected].
    I’m going to start with one that was recommended to me by a local bookseller, Outlander. It would also fit the books I have abandonned and book I already own and have been meaning to read, but I bought it because the owner of a tiny bookstore in Maryland highly recommended it to me. Yay! Ready to get started and back into this book!

  69. Sarah says:

    I still have to sort out my categories, but I plan to read Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford, The Poisonwood Bible, Go Set a Watchman, and you’ve re-inspired me to read No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency- which I own but still have never read. I am also considering re-reading The Gift of an Ordinary Day by Katrina Kenison; I loved it when I read it several years ago. I am really excited to do this challenge- I recently moved across the country and am really missing my former book group and am loving this way to have a reading plan and feel connected with other readers!

  70. Karla says:

    A few of the books on my challenge list include Pride and Prejudice, which I should have read in high school but never got around to, Jane Eyre, which I started and never finished, Macbeth, which intimidates me (although I may opt for an alternate WS title when the time comes), Interupted by Jen Hatmaker, which I’ve read before, The Last Sin Eater by Francine Rivers, which I can read in a day, and Mudhouse Sabbath, as recommended by MMD. I’m starting with Pride and Prejudice as soon as my new Kindle arrives. 😀

  71. Pam says:

    When I was in high school – 50 years ago (!) – I read We Have Always Lived In the Castle for a book report. I still recall standing in front of the class reporting on that book that I liked so much. Definitely time to read it again.

  72. Earl M. Thomas says:

    I finished The Metamorphosis, by Kafka, which was recommended by a friend. I can check that off the list. The next one will be Crime and Punishment, a book I had abandoned.

  73. Lois says:

    I really like this challenge; I’m also going to recommend to my book club when we get together later this month. I plan to choose my books as I go. I’m looking forward to a great year of reading.

  74. Ashweeni says:

    One of my new year resolutions for 2016 was to get back to reading for leisure, and I accidentally stumbled on your website. Looking forward to this challenge!

  75. Julie says:

    I am a bit confused. I commented what a great idea I think the MMD reading challenge is as part of winning the twelve books. Thought I was signing up for the challenge as well. If I have signed up, great. If not my Pinterest address is Thanks for being patient with technical plodders, Anne!

  76. Henriette says:

    I really want to join! All the way from Denmark, so some choices might be in danish (or another scandinavian language).
    Henrietteterkelsen (a)

  77. This is wonderful! How fun! I started a Facebook group to lead the challenge. If you want to join, it’s called 2016 Reading Challenge (just search for it). “I’m currently reading “the book that intimidates you”. It’s called Shot in the Heart by Mikal Gilmore.

  78. Jennifer says:

    For January I chose to read a book that I own but have never read: Revealed by J.C. and Kristin Cast, the end of the House of Night series. I will also continue to read other books that I own but have never read all throughout the month. I have decided to continue the theme I chose throughout the ENTIRE month. I will just report the first book though, lol.

    • I started a Facebook group to lead the challenge. If you want to join, it’s called 2016 Reading Challenge (just search for it on Facebook). I’m currently reading “the book that intimidates you”. It’s called Shot in the Heart by Mikal Gilmore.

  79. Cheri says:

    I just finished a book ‘published before I was born’
    The Singing Sands by Josephine Tey
    Tey is an English mystery writer – this particular book definately falls in the cozy mystery category. I could have read it when my husband was out of town. That’s my definition of a cozy!
    The books is more inner dialogue and beautiful language than mystery. The actual murder investigation really starts in the last third of the book.
    I’m looking forward to trying another of Tey’s mysteries.


    • Anne says:

      I’ve never read Josephine Tey but she is on my list: readers with great taste KEEP telling me to read her! Congrats on finishing the book; hoping many more great reads are to come.

  80. Donna says:

    On Sunday, I read Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O’Nan for the ‘a book you can finish in a day’ category. I finished it in about 5 hours and I can’t stop thinking about it. A great winter read and one that will stay with me for a long, long time.

    I plan on reading one of his other books, Wish You Were Here at some point this year. Highly recommend checking him out if you haven’t already!

  81. Laura Nelson says:

    Just finished my January Book – Mansfield Park by Jane Austen. Very different from the movie, but enjoyed it very much. I’m not starting my February Book until February. But to keep the reading going, I’m going to start reading Creative Confidence by Tom Kelly and David Kelly. I’m hoping it will inspire me to keep sketching and maybe take up painting. Target is to have it done before Feb. 1. Wishing myself luck.

  82. Gretchen Garrison says:

    Love this idea. While I do read often, usually it is to unwind, so I tend to pick lighter selections. One book outside of my “comfort zone” is definitely possible. Actually really only 3/4 will be that way since books I will be reading soon already fit the “guidelines.” Thanks!

  83. Laura says:

    I’m really excited about this.

    Most looking forward to reading many on my list, especially The Red Tent.

    Please add me to Pinterest board @lulujane3

  84. Jeanette says:

    Just finished my January book, “Best Friends Forever” by Kimberla Lawson Roby (published this month). It was a page turner from beginning to end. Glad to be in this reading challenge.

  85. Cheri says:

    I finished my second book for the challenge ‘The Greatest Generation’ by Tom Brokaw. It’s my book recommended by a friend. My book group picked it and i did NOT want to read it.
    But I’m glad I did. I went from being proud of our country to ashamed of our generation. Angry at the racism and sexism. And finally back to the realization that people are people – good and bad. There are admirable marks in any generation and things we would rather not be identified with. I even shed a few tears.

    BTW – I love the podcast. My book list is growing!

  86. Yetunde says:

    I’m a little late to the party but hey, it’s a new year. My pinterest email is yesolusola(at)gmail(dot)com. Thanks for the good list of ideas for the 12 books

  87. Joanna Cooksey says:

    My sister asked if I wanted to try this challenge and I thought it sounded a great idea. Have just finished my first book and would like to share on Pinterest.

  88. Jennifer says:

    I’m going to tackle this month with a book that really intimidates me: The Count of Monte Cristo. I don’t know why this book gives me shivers and I hide from it while caressing other classics, but thanks to this challenge I’m going to finally read it!

  89. Deborah says:

    I’ve been doing the Challenge for over a month but haven’t officially joined yet. Happy to be a part of this exciting group.

  90. Bonnie Lungren says:

    So far in my Reading Challenge I have read:
    Jane Eyre (Book I should’ve read in school) Loved it!
    Mans Search for Meaning (Book I’ve been meaning to read) Loved it!
    Yellow Wallpaper (Book I can read in a day) Liked it!
    … I am now tackling War & Peace (Book that intimidates me! Wish me luck!)

  91. Ally says:

    Hi again, Anne!

    Apologies as this has been so confusing for me. You kindly sent an invite to the pinterest board for me to my [email protected] email (which is what I used years ago to sign up for facebook). Unfortunately when I tried to log into yahoomail it told me they recycled my account because I haven’t used it in so long. If you could please resend the invite to [email protected] it would be greatly appreciated! Already two books in 🙂


  92. Carrie says:

    I came seeking a printable of this list to put on the fridge and found the original post! haha. I had seen the list on Instagram. I am going to start reviewing the choices, I’ve done three from the list so far.
    Great blog, I plan to explore more. I LOVE this printable it’s gorgeous!

  93. Isabel says:

    Sorry if this has already been suggested but there should be a bonus category: “A book about or set in a culture not your own.” 🙂

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  95. Adair says:

    I found your blog in December while looking for something to help get my struggling readers reading (I teach high school English). I printed this challenge and gave it to the students telling them that they wouldn’t get to finish it, obviously, but that if they were having trouble deciding what to read next they could use this as a guideline. More students than I thought took to this challenge and have read more than they thought they would. They were also super excited that their assigned novels covered some of the categories to get them closer to completing the challenge. They did want me to give them double credit for some of their books; I recommended “The Red Queen” to them and the sequel came out this year so they wanted it to fulfill two categories: a book recommended and published this year, I got around it by saying that I am neither a librarian or book seller. It worked much better than I thought it would and will definitely give next year’s students this challenge when the school year starts as well as the new one once we come back in January. Thank you for posting this!

  96. Bonnie Lungren says:

    Just finished reading War & Peace for the Book that Intimidates me! It wasn’t that bad! Could have done without Tolstoy’s pontificating at the end of the book … but, overall, sort of enjoyed it!

  97. Daniel says:

    I came across this challenge back in January after someone posted it on Facebook, and I completed it today. Thank you for the inspiration.

    Just to share, this is my booklist for each challenge, with the title, year of publication, author, nationality, number of pages, and language:

    A book Published this year – The Expatriates, 2016, by Janice Y.K. Lee (Hong Kong), 330 pages, English

    A book that intimidates you – Vivir para contarla, 2002, by Gabriel García Márquez (Colombia), 576 pages, Spanish

    A book you’ve already read at least once – Lord of the Flies, 1954, by William Golding (Britain), 304 pages, English

    A book you’ve been meaning to read – Americanah – 2013, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria), 588 pages, English

    A book published before you were born – Far From the Maddening Crowd, 1874, by Thomas Hardy (Britain), 386 pages, English

    A book you should have read in school – The Chocolate War, 1974, by Robert Cormier (USA), 272 pages, English

    A book that was banned at some point – The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, 2007, by Sherman Alexie (USA), 230 pages, English

    A book recommended by your local librarian or bookseller – The Boston Girl, 2014, by Anita Diamant (USA), 336 pages, English

    A book you can finish in a day – Twelve Red Herrings, 1994, by Jeffery Archer (Britain), 324 pages, English

    A book you own but never previously read – The Looting Machine, 2015, by Tom Burgis (Britain), 368 pages, English

    A book you previously abandoned – Lincoln at Gettysburg, 1992 , by Gary Willis (USA), 320 pages, English

    A book chosen for your by your spouse, partner, sibling, child, or BFF – Sword & Citadel, 1984, by Gene Wolfe (USA), 416 pages, English

  98. Jessica says:

    LOVE LOVE LOVE! I am normally a huge reader and this past year I have really fallen away from making time for it. I am starting this challenge now 🙂 What a great Challenge!

  99. Steph says:

    When do we get the 2017 challenge? I LOVED this – it is what turned me into a reader! This year I found out how much I love reading and want to thank you!

  100. Nicole says:

    A group of friends/family members took on your challenge last January and have LOVED it! It got us to read more and took us out of our comfort zones, making us try new things. Yours was great that it worked out to one book a month…so many others lists are way too long 🙂 Do you have a 2017 Reading Challenge for us to continue with?!

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  102. Helen Dougherty says:

    I finished the 201 6 Challenge and really loved doing it! It got me to think outside my normal reading parameters. In particular, I had never considered rereading books. I have already decided to try both of the 2017 challenges and have made of list of books that might fit the categories. Nineteen books on my list are already on my shelf! The best part of the challenges for me is that it focuses me to read the books I’ve already bought, instead of wandering off looking for the next new purchase.

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