I had a blast with last year’s PopSugar Challenge. It was a great way to expand my taste and focus my reading.
2022’s challenge seems just as diverse and fun and I can’t wait to sink my teeth into it! I checked out some wonderful GoodReads lists to get ideas for books to read for each challenge as well as my own divine inspiration. I have also upvoted some books I like a lot in the group to help fellow readers!
Like last year, completing this isn’t a total priority rather just a way to guide my reading, I will only complete one prompt per book. If I list certain books a few times, it’s just for flexibility purposes. I listed books in order from more likely to less likely to read and marked ones I already own or are likely pubic domain with an asterisks.
Let’s do it!
POPSUGAR READING PROMPTS
✅01. A book published in 2022: Olive recommended a few books coming out next year that sounded interesting: Home/Land: A Memoir of Departure and Return, Sentence: Ten Years and a Thousand Books in Prison and Funny Farm: My Unexpected Life with 600 Rescue Animals. I don’t actively keep up with what’s being released so it’s anyone’s game, really. Edit: I read Home/Land.
02. A book set on a plane, train or cruise ship: I’ve read a handful of these on the list and I upvoted Salt to the Sea and The Woman in Cabin 10. For myself, I’m leaning towards Luck of the Titanic or Dead Wake
✅ 03. A book about or set in a non-patriarchal society: You mean heaven? Scythe, The Mercies, The Eyes of the World. Edit: I read Scythe.
04. A book with a tiger on the cover or in the title: Someone at PopSugar really wanted us to read The Life of Pi, huh? Or I might pick up The Paper Tiger Menagerie and Other Stories
✅ 05. A Sapphic book: Of course, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo was an instant classic that’s worth the hype. I’d also recommend Wilder Girls and The Price of Salt. For myself, I’m leaning towards In the Dream House, The Color Purple or This is How You Lose the Time War. Edit: I read a lot of sapphic books this year, but for the sake of the prompt I will say In the Dream House.
✅ 06. A book but a Latinx author: In the Dream House, Her Body and Other Parties, One Hundred Years of Solitude* Edit: I read Tender is the Flesh.
✅07. A book with an onomatopoeia in the title: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest*, Gulp* Edit: I read Gulp.
✅ 08. A book with a protagonist who uses a mobility aid: So I own Have Dog, Will Travel* about a blind man and his guide dog if that counts. Or All The Light We Cannot See, Treasure Island or Lock In. Edit: I read Have Dog, Will Travel.
09. A book about “found family”: To everyone who voted Harry Potter and monopolized top voted spots for this prompt with the whole series, you have to move on. I’m leaning towards A Little Life*, Anxious People* or The Fellowship of the Ring*.
10. An Anisfield-Wolf Book Award winner: Autobiography of Malcolm X, Half of a Yellow Sun, Beloved
✅ 11. A #BookTok recommendation: I have read a lot of the top ones despite not using TikTok so I’m just going off what the GoodReads list says. I’ve upvoted The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, The Song of Achilles, Gone Girl and One of Us is Lying. I’ll check out The Book Thief, The Night Circus, One Last Stop or All The Light We Cannot See Edit: I read One Last Stop
12. A book about the afterlife: I don’t know how I feel about this prompt, The Midnight Library and The Lovely Bones are strongly upvoted but I wasn’t crazy about either. I’ll probably go for Beloved, The Astonishing Color of After or re-read From Here to Eternity*
13. A book set in the 1980s: I’ve upvoted Just Mercy (one of my top reads last year), It and The Vanishing Half. Maybe this attempt is the time I actually finish 1984. If not, I’ll try The Secret History*
✅ 14. A book with cutlery on the cover or in the title: The Disappearing Spoon, Crying in H Mart, In My Dreams I Hold a Knife Edit: I read In My Dreams I Hold a Knife
✅ 15. A book by a Pacific Islander author: A Little Life* Edit: I read A Little Life
✅ 16. A book about witches: Again with the Harry Potter shit. If someone hasn’t read it by now, they probably don’t want to. I might give Good Omens another try or pick up The Witches. Edit: I read In Defense of Witches
17. A book becoming a TV series or movie in 2022: How do I downvote Where the Crawdads Sing? I upvoted Daisy Jones and the Six and I might re-read The Nightingale or check out Death on the Nile, Conversations with Friends or Station Eleven
✅ 18. Romance novel by a BIPOC author: I read The Heart Principle for this prompt.
19. A book that takes place during your favorite season: My favorite season is autumn, so Little Women*, The Night Circus or The Secret History*
✅ 20. A book whose title starts with the last letter of your previous read: For obvious reasons, it’s hard to plan for this one! Edit: I read Wish You Were Here
✅ 21. A book about a band or a music group: I’ve upvoted Elton John’s autobiography Me and for myself I’ll look into The Storyteller, Dave Grohl’s autobiography (hope he mentions Seattle!) and Station Eleven. Edit: I read The Storyteller
22. A book with a character is on the ace spectrum: A Prayer for Owen Meany*, Loveless, Radio Silence
✅ 23. A book with a recipe in it: Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe is the only one on the recommended list I have shelved but I’m not too keen about it, maybe something will come up later in the year. Edit: I read Cod
✅ 24. A book you can read in one sitting: I read Bad Blood for this prompt.
25. A book about a secret: Jane Eyre, Rebecca*, The Secret History*
✅ 26. A book with a misleading title: How will I know until after I read it? I guess I’ll just have to trust y’all’s judgement. The Grapes of Wrath, The Jungle Edit: I read Beach Read
27. A Hugo Award winner: I upvoted Flowers for Algernon. I’ll check out Fahrenheit 451*, Dune, Ender’s Game*, American Gods, This is How You Lose the Time War
✅ 28. A book set during a holiday: This is going to be the year I finally read Little Women*, mark my words. Edit: I read One Italian Summer
✅ 29. A book by an author you read in 2021: Seeing as I read 85-ish books last year and just about that many authors, I have a lot to choose from. I’ll see how I feel in the moment Edit: I read The Paris Apartment
30. A book with the name of a board game in the title: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue*, The Answer Is…: Reflections on my Life
✅ 31. A book featuring a man-made disaster: I upvoted two of Elizabeth Kolbert’s books: The Sixth Extinction and Under a White Sky as well as Radium Girls; I can’t recommend the latter enough, it’s one of my all-time favorite non-fiction reads. I might re-read The Sixth Extinction* or pick up Voices from Chernobyl, Silent Spring or Evicted Edit: I read Evicted
✅ 32. A book with a quote from your favorite author on the cover: This is tough because I don’t have a favorite author. So I’m tweaking it a little to an author whose book I gave 5-stars which again, leaves a lot of room to breathe. I’ll have to go to an in-person bookstore to get a better idea of what I’m working with Edit: I read The Woman in the Window
✅ 33. A social-horror book: Beloved, Mexican Gothic Edit: I read The Other Black Girl
34. A book set in Victorian times: Wuthering Heights*, Jane Eyre*, The Picture of Dorian Gray*
35. A book with a constellation in the title or on the cover: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue*
✅ 36. A book you know nothing about: There are a few books on my TBR I’ve added because I’m sure at one point I knew what they were about but now my memory is failing me. When I’m feeling spontaneous I’ll pick one of these to read!
37. A book about gender identity: I upvoted If I Was Your Girl, a lovely YA romance read. I’ll check out Detransition Baby or Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl
✅ 38. A book featuring a party: Like the basic bitch I am, I upvoted Malibu Rising. It’s centered around the party and really builds the anticipation where in the other books like The Great Gatsby or Pride and Prejudice they’re just kind of happening. I’ll check out The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle or Rebecca* Edit: I read Rebecca
40. A book that fulfills a prompt from your favorite previous PopSugar reading challenge: Last year, the most interesting ones to me were a book you have seen on someone’s bookshelf (in real life, on a Zoom call, in a TV show, etc.), a book set in multiple countries, a book that has fewer than 1,000 reviews on Amazon or Goodreads or a book you think your best friend would like. Or, I might choose one of the few prompts I didn’t do to make up for it!
✅ A book with a reflected cover or “mirror” in the title: I’ve upvoted The Push (one of my favorite reads last year) and Trick Mirror. I’ll look into Frankenstein*, Firekeeper’s Daughter or Kafka on the Shore Edit: I read Ace of Spades
A book that features two languages: Americanah*, Eat Pray Love
A book with a palindromic title: I’m not going to lie, I’m not too keen on this prompt. Also, it doesn’t help that a lot of people in the GoodReads list don’t know what a palindrome is so I can’t find any decent suggestions yet.
A duology: I’m thinking of reading Concrete Rose and Doctor Sleep (pre/sequels to books I’ve already read) or the Six of Crows books.
✅ A book about a character leading a double life: I might re-read The Nightingale or pick up The Humans, 11/22/63 or Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Edit: I read Notes on an Execution
A book featuring a parallel reality: I upvoted the hell out of Replay and Dark Matter, both very good but for something more sci-fi/thriller/horror I’d lean towards Dark Matter and for something more for the everyday reader I’d go Replay. I’ll check out One Last Stop, The Starless Sea or 1Q84*
✅ A book with two POVs: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue*, re-read The Storyteller, Get a Life Chloe Brown or Ace of Spades Edit: I read The Deal
A book that takes place in sister cities: I recently discovered that Seattle and Bergen, Norway are sister cities. Seattle also has a few other interesting sister cities like Reykjavik, Galway, Kobe, Mombasa and Nantes. For Seattle, I might read The Boys in the Boat, Truth Like the Sun or Starvation Heights, however for the other sister cities nothing was jumping out to bite me, I’ll have to do more research. Another pairing I’m considering is Barcelona (I really want to read The Shadow of the Wind this year) and its sister cities: Dublin, Boston, San Francisco, etc.
Are you participating in any reading challenges this year?