2011 Challenges – The Results

I did  7 reading challenges in 2011. I finished most of them. To be fair, I didn’t always check back with the organisers. It was enough work to keep track of the challenges per sé.

Off the Shelf Challenge: SUCCESS

Off the Shelf Challenge

Off The Shelf! Challenge was organised by Bookish Ardour. As of January 1st, 2011, I had 31 unread books on my shelves and I pledged to read them all. And so I did! A few books I didn’t finish (but for me, that’s good enough, they’re off the shelf now).

1. East is East by T. C. Boyle (Read Jan. 20st)
2. 2666 by Roberto Bolano (Read during April and May, 2011)
3. More Tales of the City by Armistead Maupin (DNF, April, 28th, 2011)
4. Sweetie by Kathryn Magendie (ebook) (read Jan 25th, 2011)
5. Olivia Joules and the Overactive Imagination by Helen Fielding (read Jan 7th, 2011)
6. The Bostonians by Henry James (Read April, 2011)
7. Little Brother by Cory Doctorov (e-book) (DNF)
8. Measuring the World by Daniel Kehlmann (read April, 16th, 2011)
9. 31 Hours by Masha Hamilton (read Jan 9th, 2011)
10. Asylum by Patrick McGrath (read May 20th, 2011)
11. Kindred by Octivia E. Butler (read Jan 4th, 2011)
12. We by Evgeni Zamiatin (e-book) (DNF)
13. What To Do If Someone Dies by Nicci French (read October 22, 2011)
14. Harvest by Tess Gerritsen (read Jan 2nd, 2011)
15. Life Support by Tess Gerritsen (read Jan 15th, 2011)
16. Life Sentence by David Ellis (DNF, Jan 10th, 2011)
17. Seven Up by Janet Evanovich (read Feb 27th, 2011)
18. Solace by Nicci French (read Jan 26th, 2011)
19. The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen (read Feb 3rd, 2011)
20. Agaat by Marlene van Niekerk (DNF)
21. De tranen der Acacia’s by W. F. Hermans (Dutch) (read Jan 14th, 2011)
22. Ballet Russes by Rosita Steenbeek (Dutch) (read Jan 25th, 2011)
23. Ik haal je op ik neem je mee by Niccolo Amaniti (Dutch) (read Feb 25th, 2011)
24. Het volgende verhaal by Cees Nooteboom (Dutch) (DNF,  Feb 12th)
25. A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks (read December, 2011)
26. The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland Age 42 and Three-Quarters by Barbara Silkstone (ebook) (read March 16th)
27. Het ultieme recept by Torgny Lindgren (Dutch) (read May 10th, 2011)
28. Gran Cafe Boulevard by Tomas Lieske (Dutch) (read March 2011)
29. The Lady and the Poet by Maeve Haran (DNF) (read October 2011)
30. Your Presence Is Required at Suvanto by Maile Chapman (Read April 1st, 2011)
31. Tikkop by Adriaan van Dis (Dutch, ebook) (read Feb 3rd, 2011)


Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge: FAIL

Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge

The Book Bloggers Abroad 2011 Challenge was the challenge I organised myself. I planned to read recommendations from 10 people who did a guest post in 2010 in my Book Bloggers Abroad feature. I only managed 2 out of 10. Terrible!!!

  1. Sri Lanka: Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje. (read April 2011)
  2. Finland: Purge by Sofi Oksanen (also for Nordic Challenge)

The Atrocious Covers Challenge: SUCCESS

Atrocious Covers Challenge

The Atrocious Covers Challenge was organised by Pink Sheep Cafe. Yes, this involved books with ugly covers! I intended to read two and I did! This challenge inspired me to run the very successful Ugly Covers Competition.

1. Asylum by Patrick McGrath
2. The Human Race by O. C. Heaton


South Asian Challenge: SUCCESS

South Asian Challenge

The South Asian Challenge was organised by S. Krishna. I pledged to read one book by a South-Asian writer and so I did.

1. Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje.


Nordic Challenge: SUCCESS

The Nordic Challenge

The Nordic Challenge was organised by Notes From The North. I pledged to read two books written by authors from a Nordic country or books that are set there. And so I did:

1. Buzz Aldrin, What Happened To You in All the Confusion by Johan Harstad (read Feb 10th, 2011)
2. Purge by Sofi Oksanen (read Feb 20st, 2011)


Steampunk Challenge

Steampunk Challenge

The Steampunk Challenge was organised by The Bookkeeper and ran from October 2010 to October 2011. I said I’d read 3 steampunk books and I did.
1. Soulless by Gail Carriger
2. Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve
3. Changeless by Gail Carriger


Japanese Literature Challenge

Japanese Literature Challenge

The Japanese Literature Challenge is organised by Dolce Bellezza. Between June 1, 2011 and January 30, 2012, read one or more Japanese books. I still have a few weeks to go for this one.

I wanted to read 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami. I reserved it at the library a while ago and I still haven’t got it. I keep hoping…

About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at bookhelpline.com. In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

28 Responses to 2011 Challenges – The Results

  1. Kinna says:

    Oh but you did great! The Off the Shelf challenge alone is quite a feat. I will sign up for this year. It requires such discipline. All the best.

  2. Well done! Even if you haven’t managed to fulfill every challenge, I’m still at awe.
    I’ve never read so few books in my life as last year, but I did write one (NaNoWriMo). Maybe my readingmojo will be back this year.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Breien, writing a book is also a major achievement. There’s no rule about reading books – just do it when you feel like it (but it helps finding books that you enjoy reading rather than books that you feel you ‘have’ to read).

  3. Kristi says:

    I’m impressed! I signed up for three challenges last year and only managed two. This year, I signed up for three, but I have high hopes.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Good luck, Kristi! I don’t think anyone expects anyone else to finish all challenges. That’s why they are challenges – if they’re too easy it’s no fun.

  4. Chinoiseries says:

    Not too bad a score🙂 Especially the TBR list, you actually knocked off 31 books of that? Very impressive! It was one of the challenges that I failed in 2011.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Chinoiseries – I only had 31 unread books at the beginning of last year and througout the year, I managed to read them all. So now, the oldest unread book on my shelves is from early 2011. I don’t think I will be able to read all (55) books that are on my shelves right now, in the coming year, knowing that there will be other books that I want to read.

  5. Rikki says:

    Well done, esp. the TBR one! You can be proud of yourself!

  6. Lian says:

    Well done Judith! Almost all the challenges were a succes. Let’s hope the library will get the last book for you soon🙂

  7. Tiina says:

    Congrats! You did great with the challenges you joined!

  8. Ellie says:

    You did so much better than me! I had a massive reading slump over the summer and never caught up with the Books to be Read Challenge – I rounded off the year with one last push towards completing the full twelve and managed nine in the end. Some of them were amongst my favourites of the year though, so I can’t count it as a complete failure. And my Classics challenge was an even worse disaster! ONE novella – The Thirty-Nine Steps – and I read part of The Professor but gave up halfway through because my edition had no translation of all the French parts. Hopefully I’ll do better this year – I need to get organised!

    • Leeswammes says:

      Ellie, things happen! And don’t forget challenges are called challenges because they aren’t always easy to fulfil! You still did OK getting 9 out of 12 on one challenge. Hope this year will be good for you!

  9. Trisha says:

    I was so bad with challenges this year that I didn’t even bother writing up a report! Looks like you did really well!

  10. Roxanne says:

    Wow! So many challenges.. I am not sure if I could keep track of that!🙂 But it might be a nice idea to read books from other writers than you’d usually pick…. so that is not such a bad idea🙂

    • Leeswammes says:

      It’s not that many, Roxanne, compared to some people (they have spreadsheets to keep track). Yes, with challenges you often end up picking up (some) other books than normal and that is often really nice.

  11. Suzanne says:

    Congratulations Judith! If only I could get that many books off of my shelf *sigh*

  12. Congrats, Judith! I am really impressed that you managed to read the 31 books off your TBR-shelf. But then I see that you now have 55 books on that shelf… So I guess you won’t be bored this year🙂

  13. Well done! I still haven’t made a decision on 2012 challenges.

  14. JoV says:

    that’s awesome achievement Judith, hope you succeed in many more challenges this year!

    • Leeswammes says:

      Thanks, Jo. I’m trying hard already! I’ve made a spreadsheet to keep track of books and their variables so I hope to be able to make a nice overview at the end of the year like you had.

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