"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

'My Own Books' Reading Challenge is completed

Today is the last day of the 'My Own Books' Reading Challenge. My goal was to read at least ten books from my own bookshelves and then to decide what to do with the books now that they've been read. I didn't end up reading all the books I thought I was going to read, but I found others to fill in, so all-in-all it was a successful challenge.

The original list (click on titles for hyperlinked reviews):
  1. La's Orchestra Saves the World by Alexander McCall Smith -finished March 20th. Gave to my mother.
  2. Redeployment by Phil Kay- finished April 9th. Book belongs to my husband and he wants to keep it.
  3. Ten Windows by Jane Hirshfield- started but decided it needed my full attention which I was unwilling to give at this time.
  4. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom- finished March 26th. Gave to my sister.
  5. The Four Things that Matter Most by Ian Byock, M.D.- finished April 15th. Will keep.
  6. On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan- finished April 5th. It was a mini-book club selection so I placed it back in circulation for other club members to read. 
  7. The Confessions of Fitzwilliam Darcy by Mary Street- finished on April 24th. Gave it to my daughter.
  8. Small Wonders by Barbara Kingsolver- started and read four or five essays but realized that my heart wasn't into it so set it aside for another time.
  9. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson- finished April 3rd, review hyperlinked here. Added to my church library.
  10. The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka- finished April 12th. Want to donate to a friend who I haven't seen for a month. I'll try again soon.
I completed 8 of the original books on my list. In addition I read, or tried to read, the following books from my own shelves:
  1. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin (audiobook)- I got the audio CD set from the library book sales several years ago. I tried listening to it but the first CD wouldn't play. I could play the 2nd CD but didn't know what was going on. I decided to stop trying and threw the whole set away.
  2. A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen- finished April 19th. A friend gave this book to my daughter years ago, she left it behind when she moved. I hope to donate it to my other daughter or I will donate it to the library for their book sale.
  3. The World According to Bob by James Bowen- finished May 6th. Sequel to the above book, the two books will go out-into-the-world together.
  4. The Selected Poetry of Rainier Maria Rilke, translated by Stephen Miller-I read the whole introduction which was over 30 pages but when I started reading the poetry I realized I am not sophisticated enough to like his poems, so I set the book aside.
  5. East of Eden by John Steinbeck- this is sort of cheating for this challenge because I bought the book during it. I am reading this tome for another challenge, Classics Club Spin, but have only read 100 pages or so of 600. I will be working on this book for a long time.
  6. The CBS Murders by Richard Hammer-I started this e-book last night. I purchased it when I got my Kindle Fire several years ago. I can't believe it is a true story and I've never heard of it before. It reads like fiction. I will finish it, but when?
In total I read ten books for the 'My Own Books' challenge and feel so good about it, I will keep going. And it is wonderful to actually free up shelf space on my book shelves by off-loading the books when I am finished. The photo shows some of my own books I want to finish by my new deadline of July 31st. As I considered the stack I realized that of the ten books shown, I purchased only three of them. All the rest were given to me or I selected from free-bins. No guarantees I will read these ten books, but my goal is to read ten more books from my own shelves by the end of July. Feel free to join me. Stay tuned. 


  1. It's always a good feeling to check books off your TBR shelf as having been read. I've been working my way through my TBR shelves this year, but I've only checked off six so far. (The library is like a siren's call...I just can't stay away.) :D

  2. Wow that's awesome, Anne! I did participate with you, but only completed two books. However, one of them was SO GREAT I hate to think it would be still sitting on my shelf, unread, if not for you and this challenge. [Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegner]

    The second book was not interesting, unfortunately, but that's ok. I might consider joining you again. Even if I only knock out one book, that's still progress, and, I might find another gem!

    1. I think two books is good especially if the book have languished on your shelves for years, I'm due for a re-read Crossing for Safety.

  3. What a wonderful sense of accomplishment!! Great job in your reading and divesting.

  4. Great job on the challenge! I'm so glad you posted so that I am reminded that the challenge is over. It really motivated me to read books from my own shelves. I read 20 from my own shelves, though I will confess one of them came from Book of the Month part way through. :-) And, the book I am currently reading has been on my shelves for a while so you've started me on a wonderful path. Thank you!

  5. Looks like you did a good job! I managed to complete all ten from my list. My wrap up will be posted soon. :D

    1. Great job. It's amazing what we can do when we set out minds to it.

  6. You did a fabulous job. Not only did you complete ten books from your own shelves, but you should take credit for the ten books I read from my own shelves. And all the other people who read books off their own shelves who were motivated by this challenge that you created. Thank you!

  7. I need to read my own books too. Too many have languished for years. I have East of Eden too. I'll try to challenge myself to get thru a few of my own stacks. You did a wonderful job

  8. Oooh, I like this. I'm just not sure if I'm organizationally capable of another challenge right now. I've joined Classics Club and am working on reading Printz titles, OBOB titles, and titles from ProjectLIT. Plus I have a tendency to see random books at the library and just start reading them even though they don't "qualify" for anything!


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