2016 Reading Challenge Completed


I read a little over 60 books in 2016.

Granted, I had to sacrifice some sleep to read 4 novels in the last 10 days but I made it! Competitive? Not really. Terrified of the fact that if I don’t complete my challenge, Goodreads will not keep my 2016 books in a neat virtual bundle. This is probably some kind of OCD, but it sure is motivating!

Here’s the complete list, with links and ratings – entirely subjective, with rating explained at the end of this article – only reflecting my own personal opinion.


Switch On Your Brain, Caroline Leaf  *****
Heaven, Randy Alcorn (Kindle)  *****
Daring Greatly, Brene Brown (Kindle) *****
At Home, Bill Bryson *****
Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell *****
Esther, Beth Moore *****
Funny in Farsi, Firoozeh Dumas ****
The Artisan Soul, Erwin McManus (Kindle) ****
Bringing up Bebe, Pamela Druckerman ****
Jesus Is…, Judah Smith (Kindle) ****
7 Men, Eric Metaxas ***
Scary Close, Donald Miller (Kindle) ***
Let’s All be Brave, Annie F. Downs (Kindle) ***
It’s Not What You Think, Jefferson Bethke ***
The $100 Start-up, Chris Guillebeau ***
The End of Your Life Book Club, Will Schwalbe ****
How to Really Love Your Child, Ross Campbell (Kindle) ***
How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie ***
Fired, Kangmyoung Chang ***
Kwon-Sun Chan and Nice People, Ki-Ho Lee ***
Where Would you Like to Go?, Ae-Ran Kim ***
The Xenophobe’s Guide to the Germans ***
A Taste of Hot Apple Cider, N.J. Lindquist (Kindle) **


A Man Called Ove, Fredrik Backman ****
Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good, Jan Karon *****
The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde *****
The Language of Flowers, Vanessa Diffenbaugh *****
The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion *****
Comfort Food, Kate Jacobs (Kindle) *****
The Friday Night Knitting Club, Kate Jacobs (Kindle) *****
Knit Two, Kate Jacobs (Kindle) ****
Knit the Season, Kate Jacobs (Kindle) ****
Count of Monte Cristo, Alexander Dumas ****
The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon, Alexander McCall Smith ****
Hector and the Search for Happiness, Francois Lelord (Kindle) ****
Counting by 7’s, Holly Goldberg Sloan (Kindle) ****
The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey, Trenton Lee Stewart ****
Elderberry Croft, Becky Doughty (Kindle) ****
Prairie Rose, Catherine Palmer (Kindle) ****
My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell you She’s Sorry, Fredrik Backman (Kindle) ****
Lost in a Good Book, Jasper Fforde ****
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett (Kindle) ****
The Christmas Note, Donna VanLiere (Kindle) ***
Sushi for Beginners, Marian Keyes (Kindle) ***
Peril at End House, Agatha Christie (*Kindle*) ***
The Mystery of the Blue Train, Agatha Christie (Kindle) ***
God’s Grammar, Mick Money (Kindle) ***
The Thing About Luck, Cynthia Kadohata ***
Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms, Katherine Rundell ***
Three Bird Summer, Sara St. Antoine ***
Cross Roads, Wm. Paul Young ***
Something Rotten, Jasper Fforde ***
The Well of Lost Plots, Jasper Fforde ***
The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster ***
Austenland, Shannon Hale ***
In Between, Jenny B. Jones (Kindle) ***
Me Before You, Jojo Moyes **
Flora & Ulysses, Kate DiCamillo **
Because of Winn-Dixie, Kate DiCamillo **
Eleanor & Park, Rainbow Rowell **
Holes, Louis Sachar **
Black Coffee, Agatha Christie (Kindle) **

Total: 62 books

Non- fiction: 23 books

Fiction: 39 books

Kindle: 25 books (still hooked on hard copy books!)

Most Read Author: Kate Jacobs and Jasper Fforde share this spot with 4 books/each

Books of the Year: Switch On Your Brain, by Caroline Leaf (non-fiction) and A Man Called Ove, by Fredrik Backman (fiction)

Discovery of the Year: Contemporary European authors. Fredrik Backman, Francois Lelord, Jonas Jonasson. I’m delighted with the novel that deals with deep and important issues in a lightweight, humorous manner, with a dash of the ridiculous. Easy-reads with a heart, that’s how I describe them. Don’t be surprised if you shed a tear or two even as you laugh out loud.

2016 To Read List: I have read 8 out 9 titles (complete list here)


– I’ve read quite a few good novels this year, most of them courtesy of the Itaewon Global Village Centre or friends.
– I’ve continued reading Kids’ Lit but it’s been hit and miss with them this year.
– My interest in Agatha Christie is dwindling perhaps because I prefer the Miss Marple stories and I finished reading all of them.
– Haven’t ventured too much out of my comfort zone, although I have read some bestselling titles and I’m not in the habit of doing that – does that count?
– Highlights are the following:

The Ladies’ Book Club in Seoul – we read and discussed some great kids’ lit titles. The Itaewon Global Village even got a new bookshelf specifically for the LBC.
The K-Fiction Young Writer Award – I got to be one of their international reviewers and judges, but sadly missed the Award Ceremony because we were moving countries. Happens.
Paju Book City – I finally got to visit Korea’s Book capital, in the company of dear bookworm friends.

How many books should I plan to read next year? This needs a bit more thought. Will give you the exact number in my next post, together with a list of books I look forward to reading in 2017.

I’ve been documenting (and completing!) my reading challenges since 2011, so do check out my previous lists:

2015 Reading Challenge – 65 books
2014 Reading Challenge – 60 books
2013 Reading Challenge – 60 books
2012 Reading Challenge – 64 books
2011 Reading Challenge – 56 books

One last thing. Goodreads has their traditional “The Year in Books”, with a few fun stats. Check out mine: 2016 Year in Books.

How many books have you read this year? Any good ones you’d recommend?

RATINGS explained:
*****  excellent
**** great!
*** pretty good
** will do when bored
* why did I waste time reading this?


5 thoughts on “2016 Reading Challenge Completed

  1. Yuhuu! Îmi place sa stiu de un asa final pozitiv. Felicitări!

    Nu pot să te sfătui câte cărți sa citești anul viitorul, insa definitiv stiu din ce domeniu ar trebuie sa prevaleze. 😉


    1. Multumesc, Taniush!

      Haha clar! Sa stii ca eu deja imi pregatesc o lista de vre-o 5 carti anume despre ASTA 😀
      Posibil chiar sa scriu un mic articol cu recomandari.
      Sunt binevenite si din partea ta sugestiile, apropo!


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