My Reading Challenges of 2021

Alright, I know I’m almost 2 months late with this post but better late than never, right? Last year, I signed up for many reading challenges with ambitious (read unrealistic) goals. Then I fell into a reading slump like many others and ended up removing some challenges till I got down to just three. In 2021, I’m trying to be mindful of the fact that life has its own challenges and can get in the way of my reading challenges.

I am planning to focus on classics and non fiction. After a whole year of a self imposed book buying ban, I got the penguin little black classics box set and will start reading them in 2021. So I will be adding these books to my challenges.

As for nonfiction, I want to start reading up on finance and psychology related books. Would highly appreciate recommendations in the comments below.

Here is the tentative list of my reading challenges:

1) Turtle Recall Reading Challenge

This challenge is to read books set in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. You can read whichever books you want and as many as you want. I loved taking part in this last year although I reviewed just one book. This year, I’m once again signing up for The Counterweight Continent level (1-5 books) but hopefully will review more books.

2) Monthly Keyword Reading Challenge


This challenge assigns 8 key words for each month and you have to read a book with one or more keywords in the title. It doesn’t have to be an exact match, similar words are also acceptable. I’ve planned a book for each month from my shelf. If I can’t read a book during the assigned month (like how I didn’t read anything in Jan), I’ll just read it the next month. No pressure because I want to focus on enjoying what I read and not racing to check some boxes.

Here are the books I will be reading for each month:

JAN – End, Princess, Dance, Midnight, Court, Why, Winter, Story: The Old Nurse’s Story – Elizabeth Gaskell

FEB – Over, Edge, Rain, Blade, Red, Come, None, Glass: Come Close – Sappho

MAR – Dear, Ink, Mercy, Fly, Lost, Never, Match, True: My Dearest Father – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

APR – Last, Watch, Save, Girl, Sun, Tell, Garden, Tomorrow: How a Ghastly Story Was Brought to Light by a Common or Garden Butcher’s Dog – Johann Peter Hebel

MAYAway, Wait, Book, Raven, Lake, Angel, Nine, Island: The Book of Difficult Fruit – Kate Lebo

JUN – Beneath, Crown, Sing, Rule, Earth, Find, Happen, Cruel: O Cruel Alexis – Virgil

JUL – Ever, Shine, Gone, Search, Wood, Under, Road, Like: A Slip under the Microscope – H.G. Wells

AUG – One, Secret, Will, Tree, Blue, You, Flame, Thousand: A Cup of Sake Beneath the Cherry Trees – Yoshida Kenkō

SEP – Country, House, Top, Man, Wild, Sweet, Once, Wake: How Much Land Does a Man Need? – Leo Tolstoy

OCT – Fear, Night, Silent, Wicked, Hidden, Bones, Lied, Ghost: The Night is Darkening Round Me – Emily Brontë

NOV – Again, Loud, Star, Stay, Air, When, Since, Race: When Breath Becomes Air – Paul Kalanithi

DEC – Cold, Room, Life, Bell, Kiss, Dream, Until, Drink: The Life of a Stupid Man – Ryūnosuke Akutagawa

3) Mount TBR Challenge


Apart from my tsundoku shelf of physical books, I have way too many ebooks. When I first bought an ebook reader, I went on a download spree which has turned my TBR pile into a massive mountain. I also have too many digital ARCs that I couldn’t get to review last year. The problem with ebooks is that they don’t occupy space and do not offer a reminder that I have to read them. As an intervention, I’m planning to buy only nonfiction books in 2021 and I’m allowed to buy one new book for every 3 books read. Will be signing up for this challenge at El Toro level (75 books).

4) Goodreads Reading Challenge

goodreads 2021 rc

While it should be quality over quantity, I do have too many ARCs I need to read and review ASAP. I’m planning on finishing most of my graphic novels/comics this year, so I’ve set my goodreads reading challenge goal as 150 books. I might increase or decrease it as the year progresses based on how much I read.

Have you signed up for any of these challenges? Which challenge are you excited about? Comment below!

2 thoughts on “My Reading Challenges of 2021

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