Monday, January 10, 2011

Take a Chance Challenge

This challenge really caught my imagination. It's the Take a Chance Challenge, and here are the ten chance challenges I'll try to complete this year:
1: Staff Member’s Choice: Go to a bookstore or library that has a “Staff Picks” section. Read one of the picks from that section. Completed 18 February 2011; see list below.

2: Loved One’s Choice: Ask a loved one to pick a book for you to read. (If you can convince them to buy it for you, that is even better!) Completed 16 January 2011; see list below.

3: Blogger’s Choice: Find a “Best Books Read” post from a favorite blogger. Read a book from their list.

4: Critic’s Choice: Find a “Best of the Year” list from a magazine, newspaper or professional critic. Read a book from their Top 10 list.

5: Blurb Book: Find a book that has a blurb on it from another author. Read a book by the author that wrote the blurb.

6: Book Seer Pick: Go to The Book Seer and follow the instructions there. Read a book from the list it generates for you.

7: What Should I Read Next Pick : Go to What Should I Read Next and follow the instructions there. Read a book from the list it generates for you.

8: Which Book Pick: Go to Which Book and use the software to generate a list of books. Read a book from that list.

9: LibraryThing Pick: Go to LibraryThing’s Zeitgeist page. Look at the lists for 25 Most Reviewed Books or Top Books and pick a book you’ve never read. Read the book. (Yes … you can click on MORE if you have to.)

10: Pick A Method: Pick a method for finding a book from the choices listed below (used in previous versions of the challenge). Completed 19 January 2011; see list below.

* Random Book Selection. Go to the library. Position yourself in a section such as Fiction, Non-Fiction, Mystery, Children (whatever section you want). Then write down random directions for yourself (for example, third row, second shelf, fifth book from right). Follow your directions and see what book you find. Check that book out of the library, read it and then write about it. (If you prefer, you can do the same at a bookstore and buy the book!)
* Public Spying. Find someone who is reading a book in public. Find out what book they are reading and then read the same book. Write about it.
* Random Bestseller. Go to and, using the True Random Number Generator, enter the number 1950 for the min. and 2010 for the max. and then hit generate. Then go to this site and find the year that generated for you and click on it. Then find the bestseller list for the week that would contain your birthday for that year. Choose one of the bestsellers from the list that comes up, read it and write about it.

How fun is that? I'm looking forward to finding an interesting (or perhaps terrible) book this way!

Proposed reading and completed challenges:
1. Powell's Books has a Staff Top 5 of 2010 of their store webpage. I noticed how Room by Emma Donoghue was on several lists and have decided I want to give it a try. Completed 18 February 2011; best book of the year so far! My review here.

2. Completed 16 January 2011: The Eyes of the Dragon by Stephen King, recommended by my husband. My review is here.

3. Floor to Ceiling Books lists Department 19 as the best she read in 2010 (she read the ARC) and I'll have to wait til March to read it, but I'm looking forward to it!

4. Using the NY Times Best of 2010 list, I've found Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff. Looking forward to giving it a try.

10. Completed 19 January 2011: We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver. My review and explanation of how I chose the book are here.

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