Read Outside Your Comfort Zone Challenge

I've seen some other bloggers initiating challenges for 2011, and it inspired me to come up with my own. So lo and behold...the Read Outside Your Comfort Zone Challenge!

I think most of us like to stick with certain genres of books, but every once in a while, it's good to explore something we might not normally read. You never know, you might end up discovering some fabulous reads!

This challenge encompasses any and all genres; the point is to pick some books you would ordinarily pass by or shy away from. Don't read many books with male protagonists? Don't quite see the appeal of werewolves? Never tried a graphic novel before? Jump on in (or at least test the water!) They do not all have to belong to the same genre - the goal is just to stretch your reading choices a little.

The levels:

1-3 books: Peering Out the Window
4-6 books: Opening the Door
7-10 books: Standing on the Porch
11-15 books: Walking through the Neighbourhood
16-20 books: Exploring the Unknown

The challenge will run from now until Dec. 31, 2011 (you can sign up at any point).
If you would like to join me in this challenge, fill out this form! At the end of the year there will be a giveaway (and hey, you can choose the easiest level and still be entered!)

And feel free to grab this button to put on your sidebar :)

A Tapestry of Words

I'm not sure yet just how many books I'll get to, but here are some I have in mind:

- The first in the Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead and/or Sunshine by Robin McKinley. I am not a big vampire fan (although I did go through a Twilight phase) and the few vampire books I've read haven't appealed to me that much. However, I have heard fabulous things about both of these books, so I figure I should give them a try.

- Non-fiction. I read almost no non-fiction, but I'm sure there are some fabulous books out there I'm missing. Any suggestions for this category? Biographies/memoirs, perhaps?

- Books with PoC (people of color) characters and/or written by PoC authors. There need to be more of these in YA as it is, and The Story Siren's feature on PoC books last year made me realize that I haven't read all that many. The Latte Rebellion by Sarah Jamila Stevenson has been on my wishlist for a while now (it's being released this month). Others I'm considering are Duplikate by Cherry Cheva, When the Stars Go Blue by Caridad Ferrer, and Little Paradise by Gabrielle Wang.

- Some of the lighter, fluffier-looking YA books I might ordinarily pass on. For instance, the Pretty Little Liars series or You Wish by Mandy Hubbard.

- Adult fiction. I haven't had too much success with adult fiction in the past, but there have been the occasional books (Still Alice by Lisa Genova, Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen, and some of Jodi Picoult's novels) that I have definitely enjoyed. I'm thinking about reading more books by these authors - Left Neglected by Lisa Genova and The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen are both being published this year. Any suggestions for other similar books you think I might like? Or adult books that would also be suitable for YA readers?

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