Book Riot’s 2015 Read Harder Challenge — Update #6 & Read-a-thon Outcomes

In the month of July I managed to knock out two more Book Riot Read Harder Challenges. Let’s see what I tackled, shall we?

#6: A Book by a Person Whose Gender is Different From Your Own


Momo by Michael Ende

Oh my goodness this book, did it make me cry. Seriously, what a smart, charming little book from the author of The Neverending Story. So I want to say thank you to my childhood best friend for giving me this book last year as a wedding shower present. I finally had the chance to sit down and read it, and it was such a beautiful, emotionally rich story. The inscription in the book made me cry (but I cry easy), and I understood the parallel that was made in it between myself and Momo. I think this book is much better than The Neverending Story, I feel like it’s a classic no one talks about, and yet it’s just such a gentle, slow, thoughtful book that doesn’t ask a lot of the reader other than to listen, and listen closely.

#7: A Book That Takes Place in Asia


Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan
by Jake Adelstein

I’ve had this book on my shelf for awhile, as it was a birthday gift from my husband, and I’m struggling to figure out why I had put it off for so long. This is a work of investigative journalism, focusing on Adelstein’s career as a new reporter for one of the largest newspapers in Japan, and the focus of his work was mainly doing the crime beat. What’s fascinating about this read is the way in which the author explores issues of prostitution, human trafficking, and the way in which the laws in Japan are fairly strict yet problematic in these situations. There’s also a large focus on the yakuza and loan-sharks, which is a topic that’s always interested me. A really dark and rough read, but it provides some unique insight into Japanese law-enforcement and why the seedy underbelly is the way it is. I highly recommend this piece of non-fiction, especially if you’re interested in organized crime or tougher issues.

And with these two books read, I am at 16/24 challenges completed, which means I only have seven challenges to go, and five months left to go. I think I’ll be able to complete this, though I am worried about the book I selected for one of the challenges because it’s over 800 pages. I supposed I should get on that, huh?


#CRAMATHON happened from July 10th to the 12th and was hosted by Whitney @ WhittyNovels. Basically the goal of this readathon was to try and read as many tiny books on your shelf. I don’t own any novels in verse or any novellas, so I am skipping those challenges and did all the other ones. Challenges to be completed were:

1. Read a children’s book – The Book of Deares for Lost Friends by Jane Kelly
2. Read a hardback – Fariest by Marissa Meyer
3. Read 2 books in 24 hours – The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow & Wild Cards by Simone Elkeles
4. Read a graphic novel – Codename: Sailor V Vol. 2 by Naoko Takeuchi
5. Read 5 books total – DID IT!


tbrtakedown#TBRTakedown 2.0 is hosted by the amazing Shannon @leaninglights and this one was held on July 25th-31st. There were also challenges to be completed and they were…

1. First Book in a series – Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
2. Sequel Book in a series – Storm by Amanda Sun
3. Out of your comfort zone (genre, author, reviews, etc) – Tokyo Vice by Jake Adelstein (non-fiction) 
4. On your shelf over a year (or the longest) – Momo by Michael Ende
5. Most recently hauled book – Wind / PInball by Haruki Murakami

I am so proud of myself! The last time I did #TBRTakedown I didn’t finish the challenges, but this time around I managed to read all five books I selected and I did it before the time was up. If I had to choose a favourite, I’d say Momo by Michael Ende. It was such a surprise and joy to read, and it left me feeling quite emotional. An easy book to recommend, and it’s a great classic too!

My husband also gave me another monthly challenge to read diversely through my shelves. Here were the challenges and what I read to correspond with it.

1. I don’t know what it’s called but the cover is red — A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

2. Boo! haunted house (read a horror novel) – Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire (ghost stories!)

3. ‘For Asgard! For Albuquerque!’ read a superhero team-up — Hawkeye vs. Deadpool by Gerry Duggan  & Matteo Lolli 
4. Free Space (anything I want) – Don’t Fail me Now by Una LaMarche
5. Something funny. – Me, Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
So unlike the last time my husband gave me a challenge, I completed this one on time! Mind you, this time around I didn’t have to read a 500+ page novel (that turned out to BE AWESOME). It was just to just try to find books to fit his silly challenges, and I appreciate when he tries to get me to read larger books or other things than YA and Middle Grade. With that, these are all the challenges and read-a-thons I took part in during the month of July. I hope you guys will participate in ARC August and Book-tube-a-thon! (Or at least cheer me on!)

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