Yay, it’s here! Read Harder 2020 is here! I look forward to this list every year. In part, I just like to see what the brains at Book Riot have come up with, and in part, I love to put together a plan for myself for how to cover the tasks. Additionally, I try to make it more feminist by finding books to cover each task that are written by women or authors who identify as women. For various reasons, this doesn’t always happen, but I try hard to make it so. #RequisiteStarTrekReference
So, what do we have this year? How will this pan out? I am thinking of the following:
- Read a YA nonfiction book: #NotYourPrincess by Lisa Charleyboy or How Dare the Sun Rise by Sandra Uwiringiyimana
- Read a retelling of a classic of the canon, fairytale, or myth by an author of color: Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi OR One Thousand and One Nights by Hanan Al-Shaykh. Probably the 1st one since I’ve owned it forever and haven’t got round to reading it yet.
- Read a mystery where the victim(s) is not a woman: The Appraisal by Anna Porter OR The Distant Hours by Kate Morton OR Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson
- Read a graphic memoir: Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide by Isabel Quintero
- Read a book about a natural disaster: Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala OR Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
- Read a play by an author of color and/or queer author: Angels in America by Tony Kushner. Mostly because I know Jason Isaacs (Twitter) was in this play at one point. Carrying on with my hardcore Jason Isaacs (Insta) crush.
- Read a historical fiction novel not set in WWII: The Land Beyond the Sea by Sharon Kay Penman. Also, this task is funny to me, as ALL the HF I read is set in a time other than WWII. Is there really that much WWII HF? LOL. I’m already reading this one, so I might as well use it for this task; I won’t get it finished before the new year, so I reckon it counts.
- Read an audiobook of poetry: If They Come for Us by Fatimah Asghar OR The Poets’ Corner by John Lithgow
- Read the LAST book in a series: Big Sky by Kate Atkinson (don’t know if it is the LAST, last, but it is the most recent one out in the Jackson Brodie series). Also, DID YOU KNOW that there is a TV series of these books called Case Histories? It stars… wait for it… Jason Isaacs! Dear god, that man’s eyes…
- Read a book that takes place in a rural setting: Gilead by Mary Robinson OR The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily Danforth
- Read a debut novel by a queer author: How to Survive a Summer by Nick White OR Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead OR Bright Lines by Tanwi Nandini Islam
- Read a memoir by someone from a religious tradition (or lack of religious tradition) that is not your own: Muslim Girl by Amani Al-Khatanahtbeh OR Educated by Tara Westover. Every religion is different for me. Hardcore atheist…
- Read a food book about a cuisine you’ve never tried before: Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds by Yemisi Aribisala OR Notes from a Young Black Chef: A Memoir by Kwame Onwuachi (both Nigerian chefs). This was hard for me even to find some since it turns out I’ve eaten a LOT of different cuisines, and many that I haven’t seem not to have any books written about them.
- Read a romance starring a single parent: Maybe Home Again by Kristin Hannah, mostly because someone gave it to me and so I don’t have to look for something else. I really don’t know yet since I am definitely not a romance reader. I might pick one from this list because it’s awesomely comprehensive: Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
- Read a book about climate change: Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward (double dipper!) OR The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert
- Read a doorstopper (over 500 pages) published after 1950, written by a woman: The Land Beyond the Sea by Sharon Kay Penman (double dipper!)
- Read a sci-fi/fantasy novella (under 120 pages): Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire OR Last Summer at Mars Hill by Elizabeth Hand. Probably the 2nd. I love Elizabeth Hand; her stories are so fucked up.
- Read a picture book with a human main character from a marginalized community: No idea. I’ll probably just wander around the kids’ section at the bookstore and pick one while my daughter is browsing.
- Read a book by or about a refugee: Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai (because my daughter already has it, so that’s convenient) OR The Silence and the Roar by Nihad Sirees
- Read a middle grade book that doesn’t take place in the U.S. or the UK: Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai (double dipper!) OR Sweetness in the Belly by Camilla Gibb. Probably the 1st since the 2nd seems a little older than middle grade.
- Read a book with a main character or protagonist with a disability (fiction or non): House Rules by Jodi Picoult or maybe Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
- Read a horror book published by an indie press: After the People Lights Have Gone Off by Stephen Graham Jones. Been wanting to read this one forever.
- Read an edition of a literary magazine (digital or physical): I have a backlogged stack of Arthuriana that will do nicely for this.
- Read a book in any genre by a Native, First Nations, or Indigenous author: #NotYourPrincess by Lisa Charleyboy (double dipper!) OR The Round House by Louise Erdrich
It’ll be interesting, at the end of 2020, to see how many of these books I’ve planned are the ones I actually ended up reading for this year’s challenge.