On Joining the Legendary Book Club of Habitica

Apparently I didn’t actually join the Legendary Book Club of Habitica when I joined the guild’s 2016 Modest Reading Challenge. Or maybe I did and they kicked me out because I didn’t post enough? But I did complete the challenge, which was a mere 12 books. Anyway, when I went to look at the 2017 challenges, I made sure to join the guild. And this year I decided to attempt the Ultimate Reading Challenge, which is 52 books.

I know, I know, I said I was done joining annual challenges, but I took a peek at this one and realized that it’s composed almost entirely of tasks I already have for other challenges. So I would be a fool not to join. A fool, I say! So, here are the 52 tasks (in no particular order):

  • A book with a red spine – Dragon of the Red Dawn by Mary Pope Osborne
  • A book set in two different time periods – Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  • The oldest book in your TBR pile/list –
  • A book with a month or day of the week in the title
  • A book with an unreliable narrator or ambiguous ending – I’m Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid
  • A book set around a holiday other than Christmas/Yule/Hannakuh/Kwanzaa/Festivus/etc – Poe by J. Lincoln Fenn 
  • A book about a topic you already love – Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog: The Book by Joss Whedon et al.
  • A book set in a hotel
  • A book in translation
  • A book that takes place over a character’s life span – On the Wings of a Butterfly by Marilyn J. Maple and Sandy Haight
  • A book you never finished – You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero
  • A book that is mentioned in another book
  • A book set somewhere you’ve never been but would like to visit – Murder in G Major by Alexia Gordon (Ireland)
  • A book recommended by an author you love
  • A book with a single-word title – Untitled by Julie Kaewert
  • The first book in a series that you haven’t read before – New Beginnings by Victoria Schwab
  • A book about food – French Milk by Lucy Knisley
  • A book about a difficult topic – Writing the Other by Nisi Shawl and Cynthia Ward
  • A book with a subtitle – Boudoirs to Brothels: The Intimate World of Wild West Women by Michael Rutter
  • A script or screenplay – Black Coffee by Agatha Christie
  • A book by an author who goes by at least one of their initials instead of their name – A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
  • A book with a family-member term in the title – The King of the Golden River; Or, The Black Brothers: A Legend of Stiria by John Ruskin
  • A book involving a mythical creature – Promises, Promises by L-J Baker
  • A book featuring something that doesn’t normally talk doing so – Unlovable by Dan Yaccarino
  • A book with a cat on the cover – File M for Murder by Miranda James
  • A book that is set within 100 miles of your location
  • A book by a person with a disability – In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
  • A classic by a non-European author
  • A book with multiple authors – 2017 Fifth Annual Battle of the Bards Poetry Contest
  • A book based on mythology – The House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard
  • A book that is a frame story – Passing Strange by Ellen Klages
  • A Newbery Award winner – The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare
  • A book by an author who uses a pseudonym – Murder at Hazelmoor by Agatha Christie
  • A book wherein all point-of-view characters are people of color – Persona by Genevieve Valentine
  • A book with a title that has a character’s name – Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona
  • A collection of stories by a woman – While the Light Lasts by Agatha Christie
  • A book where the main character is a different ethnicity than you – Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older
  • A book of letters or about letters – The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  • A book by an author from a country you’ve never visited – Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
  • A book with one of the four seasons in the title – In the Dead of Winter by Nancy Mehl
  • A book you loved as a child – Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
  • A book recommended by a librarian or bookseller – Planetfall by Emma Newman
  • A book with pictures – The Steampunk Tarot by Barbara Moore and Aly Fell
  • A book that you can finish in a day – Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
  • A book with a chase scene – Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • A book by an indigenous person
  • A book set in the wilderness – Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne
  • A book published before you were born – Giant’s Bread by Mary Westmacott
  • A book from a non-human perspective – The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • A book nominated for an award in 2017 – All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
  • A book with career advice – The Wonder by Emma Donoghue
  • A book of any genre that addresses current events – Beautifully Unique Sparkleponies by Chris Kluwe

Since double-dipping is discouraged in this challenge, and I have to mark a task as completed in order to get the xp for it, I’m going to be declaring each task as it is completed and just hope it works out well. Most of these I have a pretty good idea what I’m going to read, but a few are new tasks. Like “a book with a chase scene.” Anybody have any suggestions for that one?


My 2016 in Books

I finished 65 books in 2016, and the Goodreads site put together a nice little summary for me. As usual, I’m running behind on writing book reviews, but I’m certainly in much better shape than I have been some years. I’ll be giving priority to reviews for the Award-Winning Science Fiction & Fantasy Challenge so I can get those linked to Shaunesay’s challenge blog. I think I wound up with a whopping three qualifying reads for that challenge, falling short of my goal of five, but I will try it again this year.

I successfully completed two challenges in 2016. I read books for all 24 tasks of Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge, but I took advantage of the double-dipping option, so that does not reflect 24 separate books.


Challenge completed on December 26th!

Though looking it over, I think I probably could have almost completed it without any double-dipping. Then over at Habitica‘s Legendary Book Club, I read 12 books, one for each month’s task in the Modest Reading Challenge. Sometime this week I need to check in over there and see if they have any new challenges I want to do, but it will need to wait until the houseguests have departed.

I did not fare quite so well on my Personal Reading Challenge or PopSugar’s Ultimate Reading Challenge. My 2016 PRC had 30 reading prompts, and I completed 27. Which isn’t too bad, I suppose. That comes out to 90%, which is definitely a passing grade. But it also allows for some double-dipping. I completed only 33 of PopSugar’s 41 challenge prompts, which comes to 80%, but I didn’t do any double-dipping on that one. Between the two challenges, I have 11 prompts unfulfilled, so I will be adding them to my 2017 PRC, which doubles it. Dang.

I haven’t yet chosen my top reads of 2016, but you can watch that link for developments over the next few days. The 2016 Stinker of the Year Award, however, goes to The Cat in the Hat by Dr Seuss.