Thursday, December 05, 2019

2020 Victorian Reading Challenge

Victorian Reading Challenge
Host: Becky's Book Reviews (sign up here)
Duration: January - December 2020
Goal: Read between 4 to 6 Books (4 minimum)

Choose to participate in the basic challenge (quarterly) or the advanced challenge (themed months). All books must fall into the "Victorian" category being either a) books originally published between 1837 and 1901 b) books originally written (but not published) between 1837 and 1901 c) general nonfiction about the Victorian era (the times, the culture, the people, the events) d) biographies of Victorians.

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I. Quarterly Victorian Challenge; Check-Ins will be posted at the end of each quarter so you can share your progress.

Read ONE book between January 1, 2020 and March 31, 2020
Read ONE book between April 1, 2020 and June 30, 2020
Read ONE book between July 1, 2020 and September 30, 2020
Read ONE book between October 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020

II. There will be ELEVEN themed monthly posts. (And ONE Super-Bonus Theme that will cover all twelve months). You can sign up for this level of the challenge and not "have" to participate every month. The goal is to read at least four to six books throughout the whole year. It is also more important to finish your current book than start a new theme. So if a new month comes and you're still halfway through your book...finish your book...and don't worry about keeping up with that month's theme. I will post check-ins throughout the year.

JANUARY/FEBRUARY: The theme is JOURNEYS and TRAVELS. Read any book where a character goes on ANY journey. (For example, Pickwick Papers, Three Men in a Boat, Jane Eyre, Can You Forgive Her?, Great Expectations, Treasure Island, Alice in Wonderland, etc.) The journey does not have to be a grand adventure or luxurious vacation.

FEBRUARY/MARCH: The theme is LOVE and MARRIAGE. Read any book where characters fall in love, or fall out of love, or court, or become engaged, or get married. It doesn't have to be an epic romance with a happily ever after. (Though it can!)

MARCH/APRIL: The theme is SECOND CHANCES. Give an author a second chance. Give a book a second chance. Give a genre a second chance.

APRIL/MAY: The theme is NAMES AS TITLES. Read any book where a proper name (a person, a place, etc) is the title of the book.

MAY/JUNE: The theme is LONG TITLE OR LONG SUB-TITLES. Victorians could be RIDICULOUS and a bit over-the-top with the titles and subtitles of their books. Choose to read one with a long/longer title and/or subtitle.

JUNE/JULY: The theme is ADAPTATIONS. Read any book that has been adapted into a movie, miniseries, or television show. OR read any book that you think SHOULD be adapted into a movie. If you choose that option you can even make a case for WHO should star in it.

JULY/AUGUST: The theme is FAVORITE AUTHORS, NEW-TO-ME Books. Choose a favorite author and read a book by him/her that you've never read before.

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER: The theme is BACK TO SCHOOL. Read (or reread) any book that you were assigned to read in school or university. OR Read any book where a character's education is emphasized (Great Expectations, Nicholas Nickleby, Jane Eyre, etc.) OR Read any book that you think SHOULD be required reading for high school or university.

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER: The theme is CRIME OR TRUE CRIME. Thrillers. Mysteries. Suspense. Horror. GOTHIC. This would be a great place to fit in general nonfiction about the Victorian era. Some great true crime books have been published.

OCTOBER/NOVEMBER: The theme is HOME AND FAMILY. Read any book with a focus on family life and relationships between family members. (The relationships do not have to be healthy.)

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER: The theme is COMFORT READS. Reread a book (of any length) that just makes you HAPPY.

January Through December: The super-bonus theme is BEARDED VICTORIANS. I've listed a few examples below.

Charles Dickens

Anthony Trollope
Wilkie Collins

George MacDonald

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Jamie Ghione 11:20 AM  

I'm in again. Will be reading the four book minimum.

Fanda Classiclit 8:35 PM  

I'm in, for the basic challenge!
Thanks for hosting it again. :)

Kim 2:25 PM  

I'm in for the themed challenges. Better late than never. :)

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

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