Reading Challenge Cheater Pants

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Every year I set a reading goal on Goodreads, and for the last 2 years it’s been to read 100 books. A year ago I went way over my goal, but man was this year a struggle. Let’s see if you can figure out how I “cheated” in 2014.

JANUARY (7): Takedown Twenty (Evanovich); Divergent (Roth); Reality Boy (King); Who Asked You? (McMillan); Cross My Heart (Patterson); Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and Other Powerful Web Tools for the Classroom (Richardson); The Goldfinch (Tartt)

FEBRUARY (6): Sycamore Row (Grisham); Strategies that Work (Harvey); Paper Covers Rock (Hubbard); Gone (Patterson); Insurgent (Roth); Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist (Cohn & Levithan)

MARCH (8): The Magician’s Assistant (Patchett); Lie (Bock); The Impossible Knife of Memory (Anderson); Beautiful Day (Hilderbrand); Promises to Keep (Green); Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes (Coerr); Tangerine (Bloor); The Silver Star (Walls)

APRIL (7): Morning (Thayer); The Tragedy Paper (LaBan); Private L.A. (Patterson); The Theory of Everything (Johnson); Allegiant (Roth); There’s a Boy in the Girls’ Bathroom (Sachar); Hate List (Brown)

MAY (5): Roomies (Zarr); The Suitors (David-Weill); Life, After (Littman); Fangirl (Rowell); The Rules of Survival (Werlin)

JUNE (15): Flora and Ulysses (DiCamillo); Sign Language (Ackley); OCD Love Story (Haydu); This is the Story of a Happy Marriage (Patchett); Unlucky 13 (Patterson); Learning a New Land (Suarez-Orozco); This Star Won’t Go Out (Earl); Making Content Comprehensible for English Learners (Echevarria); Hidden Girl (Hall); A Wedding in December (Shreve); Living with Jackie Chan (Knowles); Top Secret Twenty-One (Evanovich); Jumping Off Swings (Knowles); The Chosen One (Williams); Go Ask Alice (Sparks)

JULY (7): Virtuosity (Rodriguez); Joey Pigza Loses Control (Gantos); Charm and Strange (Kuehn); Bunheads (Flack); What They Found: Love on 145th Street (Myers); Teen Idol (Cabot); The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks (Lockhart)

AUGUST (11): The Museum of Extraordinary Things (Hoffman); Chestnut Street (Binchy); October Mourning (Newman); Tilt (Hopkins); Uses for Boys (Scheidt); Big Little Lies (Moriarty); When You Reach Me (Stead); The Coldest Girl in Coldtown (Black); Octavian Nothing (Anderson); Cracked Up to Be (Summers); If I Stay (Forman)

SEPTEMBER (4): Jemima J (Green); Wild Roses (Caletti); Savvy (Law); Suicide Notes (Ford)

OCTOBER (5): Four (Roth); Burn (Patterson); Margot (Cantor); Leaving Home (Picoult); Moxie and the Art of Rule Breaking (Frankweiler)

NOVEMBER (5): Leaving Time (Picoult); The Vacationers (Straub); Atlantia (Condie); Yes Please (Poehler); Dark Places (Flynn)

DECEMBER (20): After (Efaw); The One and Only Ivan (Applegate); The Extreme Internet Searcher’s Handbook (Hock); Gray Mountain (Grisham); Private India (Patterson); Hope to Die (Patterson); The Last Exit to Normal (Harmon); Eggs (Spinelli); Still Life with Breadcrumbs (Quindlen); China Dolls (See); Zoe Letting Go (Price); Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour (Matson); Boy (Dahl); Vacation Under the Volcano (Osborne); Amelia’s Family Ties (Moss); Captain Underpants #7 (Pilkey); Heart to Heart with Mallory (Friedman); Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH (O’Brien); Sophie the Daredevil (Bergen); The Young Gymnast (Jackman)

So… notice anything about December? Yes, I read a lot in June, but December’s pattern is interesting. I read *6* of them on December 31st. And do you see how the quality declines? I go from reading books by authors like Lisa See and Anna Quindlen down to… Magic Tree House books and Captain Underpants. Not that there’s anything wrong with those books. And, I always give myself permission to read middle grade books and the occasional upper elementary book if it’s highly recommended.

But I *had* to get to my goal. Even though, as my lovely husband pointed out, it was an artificial goal set by me, that no one would ever know about. Still, it had to be done. It’s shameful not to read at least 100 books, right? Right.

So, I did it. And I already put up my goal for 2015: 100 more books.

What about you? Are you as… anal freakish weird awesome as me?