For the 8th year, MobileRead has an Annual Reading Challenge!
But unlike most reading challenges, for this one you make up your own target, and then track your progress through the year.
Maybe you would like to read a certain number of pages this year, finish a certain number of books, concentrate on a specific genre, or deplete your ever-growing TBR list.
If you'd like to join in, reserve a post in the 2017 Reading Challenge List Thread. In this post you should set out your 2017 challenge, and track your progress (by editing your post) through the year.
Above all, remember that this is just a fun activity that some of us have enjoyed doing in the past. Many of us have found reading challenges to be an entertaining way to set goals for ourselves, get ideas for books, and see what others are reading.
Whatever you do, please do not worry about whether or not you will complete your challenge for 2017.
"Older individuals, regardless of gender, health status, wealth, or education, showed the survival advantage of reading books,” says Becca Levy, a professor of epidemiology and psychology. The survival advantage, she adds, persisted after adjustment for baseline cognition—meaning that it was the benefits of reading, rather than the readers’ previous cognitive capacity, that helped lengthen life spans. “More questions need to be answered,” Levy says. “But we know that reading books involves two cognitive processes that could confer a survival advantage: the slow, deep immersion needed to connect to content; and promotion of empathy, social perception, and emotional intelligence."
Help us select the book that the MobileRead Book Club will read for December, 2016.
The nominations will run through midnight EST November 26 or until 10 books have made the list. The poll will then be posted and will remain open for five days.
The book selection category for December is: Fantasy.
In order for a book to be included in the poll it needs THREE NOMINATIONS (original nomination, a second and a third).
How Does This Work?
The Mobile Read Book Club (MRBC) is an informal club that requires nothing of you. Each month a book is selected by polling. On the last week of that month a discussion thread is started for the book. If you want to participate feel free. There is no need to "join" or sign up. All are welcome.
How Does a Book Get Selected?
Each book that is nominated will be listed in a poll at the end of the nomination period. The book that polls the most votes will be the official selection.
How Many Nominations Can I Make?
Each participant has 3 nominations. You can nominate a new book for consideration or nominate (second, third) one that has already been nominated by another person.
How Do I Nominate a Book?
Please just post a message with your nomination. If you are the FIRST to nominate a book, please try to provide an abstract to the book so others may consider their level of interest.
How Do I Know What Has Been Nominated?
Just follow the thread. This message will be updated with the status of the nominations as often as I can. If one is missed, please just post a message with a multi-quote of the 3 nominations and it will be added to the list ASAP.
When is the Poll?
The poll thread will open at the end of the nomination period, or once there have been 10 books with 3 nominations each. At that time a link to the initial poll thread will be posted here and this thread will be closed.
The floor is open to nominations. Please comment if you discover a nomination is not available as an ebook in your area.
Official choices with three nominations each:
(1) Silverlock by John Myers Myers Goodreads Print Length: 360 pages
In this richly picaresque story of a modern man's fruitful adventurings in legendary realms of gold, John Myers Myers has presented a glowing tapestry of real excitement and meaning. In essence, this is the tale of Silverlock's wanderings in the Commonwealth, the land of immortal heroes real and imagined, in search of his true destiny. In form, it is sheer headlong narrative, with occasional clangorous verses woven into its fabric. In content, it is something between a many-peopled, incident-studded story of high emprise, and a morality for our time. Always it is fresh and bold in concept, superb in its execution . . . How A. Clarence Shandon came to the Commonwealth, exchanging his everyday name and Chicago-bound life for that of a traveler beyond time; what great ones of old legend and modern story he encountered, and to what purpose; what loves he knew and what fights he fought; what trials befell him in the Pit, and what truth he discovered when at last he won to the Hippocrene Spring -- these are matters of such crowding variety and implicit significance as the reader must discover for himself . . . And in the discovering, the literate reader will have a wonderful time. He will be amused by the wicked wit that illumines the vast panorama, and intrigued by the challenge it offers his own learning. Most of all, he will be impressed by its profound knowledge, of our cultural heritage, and stirred by its vital interpretations.
Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can't seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse—Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy's mom finds out, she knows it's time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he'll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends—one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena—Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.
The Handmaid's Tale is not only a radical and brilliant departure for Margaret Atwood, it is a novel of such power that the reader will be unable to forget its images and its forecast. Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States, now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men of its population.
The story is told through the eyes of Offred, one of the unfortunate Handmaids under the new social order. In condensed but eloquent prose, by turns cool-eyed, tender, despairing, passionate, and wry, she reveals to us the dark corners behind the establishment's calm facade, as certain tendencies now in existence are carried to their logical conclusions. The Handmaid's Tale is funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing. It is at once scathing satire, dire warning, and tour de force. It is Margaret Atwood at her best.
(4) A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness Goodreads | Print Length: 224 pages
At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn't the monster Conor's been expecting-- he's been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he's had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It's ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd-- whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself-- Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.
The monster showed up just after midnight. As they do. But it isn’t the monster Conor's been expecting. He's been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he's had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming... The monster in his back garden, though, this monster is something different. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth. Costa Award winner Patrick Ness spins a tale from the final idea of much-loved Carnegie Medal winner Siobhan Dowd, whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself. Darkly mischievous and painfully funny, A Monster Calls is an extraordinarily moving novel of coming to terms with loss from two of our finest writers for young adults.
(5) Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho Goodreads Print Length: 371 pages
In this sparkling debut, magic and mayhem clash with the British elite…
The Royal Society of Unnatural Philosophers, one of the most respected organizations throughout all of England, has long been tasked with maintaining magic within His Majesty’s lands. But lately, the once proper institute has fallen into disgrace, naming an altogether unsuitable gentleman—a freed slave who doesn’t even have a familiar—as their Sorcerer Royal, and allowing England’s once profuse stores of magic to slowly bleed dry. At least they haven’t stooped so low as to allow women to practice what is obviously a man’s profession…
At his wit’s end, Zacharias Wythe, Sorcerer Royal of the Unnatural Philosophers and eminently proficient magician, ventures to the border of Fairyland to discover why England’s magical stocks are drying up. But when his adventure brings him in contact with a most unusual comrade, a woman with immense power and an unfathomable gift, he sets on a path which will alter the nature of sorcery in all of Britain—and the world at large…
Kate Archer left home years ago, swearing that she would die before she returned to Maine. As plans go, it was a pretty good one — simple and straightforward.
Not quite fast enough, though.
Before she can quite manage the dying part, Kate gets notice that her grandmother is missing, leaving the carousel that is the family business untended.
And in Archers Beach, that means ‘way more trouble than just a foreclosure.
At the publisher's request, this title is sold without DRM (Digital Rights Management).
Carousel Tides pulls you into the chill foggy reality of peeling-paint sand-grit coastal Maine outside of tourist season and then hands you something else -- the hidden world lurking in shadows or under the land's surface or just offshore, where black dogs hunt the night and selkies toss unpleasant truths over their shoulders before diving into the next wave. In the center of this, Kate Archer tends and guards one of the spookiest carousels this side of Ray Bradbury and wonders what has happened to her grandmother. The old woman sent her a letter, left papers deeding over the carousel and old house and the Land (meaning much more than property), and vanished, telling the spirits of the land and sea that she expected to be back before the turning of the year.
Now March has come and gone and Kate must return from self-exile to take up powers and responsibilities she has renounced, or dying will be the least of her problems . . .
Sharon Lee weaves fantasy into reality so deftly that you scarcely notice when you slip across the edge. And once you're there, the story's own magic won't let you turn back from the strong characters, deep mysteries, and even deeper danger.
--James A. Hetley, author of Dragon's Eye, Dragon's Teeth, and Dragon's Bones.
The vampires had been living in London since the time of Elizabeth I, but now they were being ruthlessly murdered by someone who ripped their coffins open for the light of day to burn them to ashes. No vampire could endure the daylight to destroy the murderer. They had to turn to a mortal human for aid.
Thus it was that Professor James Asher, one-time spy, returned home to find his young wife in a strange coma and Simon Ysidro, oldest of the London vampires, waiting for him. Ysidro, although polite, left no doubt of his power to locate his spell on the young woman, wherever she might flee. Asher must agree to find the destroyer of the vampires for them.
But if he found the killer, what must happen to them? What would inevitably be the fate of any mortal human who learned the identities and locations of the vampires? The answer was all too obvious. Whether he succeeded or failed, it seemed that Professor James Asher was doomed!
Claire, the Devil’s assistant, knows very little about the world she was dropped into five years ago, when she inherited her mother’s unpaid debt to the Demon King. She certainly didn’t expect to be a contender for the Fallen Queen’s throne, a target for the Druid King’s mafia, or a suspect in the murder of Junior, the Devil’s oldest hell spawn.
In a last ditch effort to save her life and get out of her deal with the Devil, she sets out to solve Junior’s murder only to be taken prisoner by the four most dangerous immortal hell spawn alive.
Not to be out done, the Pagan Queen Mab, claims Claire for entering her realm uninvited. She has an old debt to settle with her brother the Devil. Taking Claire from him after losing her years ago is just icing on the cake.
Will Claire win her freedom, and save herself from the Devil? Or be trapped by Mab forever?
(9) The Bees by Laline Paull Goodreads Print Length: 352 pages
Flora 717 is a sanitation worker, a member of the lowest caste in her orchard hive where work and sacrifice are the highest virtues and worship of the beloved Queen the only religion. But Flora is not like other bees. With circumstances threatening the hive’s survival, her curiosity is regarded as a dangerous flaw but her courage and strength are an asset. She is allowed to feed the newborns in the royal nursery and then to become a forager, flying alone and free to collect pollen. She also finds her way into the Queen’s inner sanctum, where she discovers mysteries about the hive that are both profound and ominous.
But when Flora breaks the most sacred law of all—daring to challenge the Queen’s fertility—enemies abound, from the fearsome fertility police who enforce the strict social hierarchy to the high priestesses jealously wedded to power. Her deepest instincts to serve and sacrifice are now overshadowed by an even deeper desire, a fierce maternal love that will bring her into conflict with her conscience, her heart, her society—and lead her to unthinkable deeds.
Thrilling, suspenseful and spectacularly imaginative, The Bees gives us a dazzling young heroine and will change forever the way you look at the world outside your window.