books · Shar

I completed a reading challenge+ bookish recommendations

Good morning Virtually Readers! Remember this post where I announced I was doing the Ivyclad Ideas reading challenge? I completed it so I thought I’d use it to look at some of the books I’ve read this year and recommend the good ones.


 Column One


A classic—I’ve read two classics this year, both written for children. I recommend Peter Pan if you want to know about the original myth, and The Wouldbegoods as a fun children’s adventure story.

RetellingLunar Chronicles all the way.

Short story—I read two short story collections: Begin, End, Begin and Summer Days and Summer Nights. I didn’t like all the stories in them, but I liked the collections in general and some stories were excellent.

A playThe Importance of Being Earnest is hilarious and a classic and very short.

A book that’s a movieTFIOS. I guess I don’t really recommend this one?


Column Two

Book with a male MCBlack Heart has criminals and magic plus it BREAKS YOU.

1st person narration—I read a lot of books like this, but Night Swimming is a fluffy Australian contemporary.

Book with no romance—Highly, HIGHLY recommend Radio Silence.

Book set in the UKThe Bone Season is this really unique part-fantasy, part-dystopia.

Book that’s less than 200 pagesGirl Code is a nonfiction about girls and tech and coding. It’s written by two girls who made a game called Tampon Run to raise awareness about the menstrual taboo. Interesting if you’re into that thing.

Column 3

Female MCThe Handmaid’s Tale is very depressing but also eye-opening. Dystopian with a lot of oppression of women.

3rd person narrationWhen Dimple Met Rishi is an Indian-American love story. Very cute.

Book with a love triangle—Apparently love triangles are out of fashion, because I haven’t read any proper ones. I had to go for Gemina because it kind of had one?

Set in a fantasy landI did Bright Smoke, Cold Fire for this prompt but I didn’t really like this book. It was too creepy.

More than 500 pages—All the Harry Potter books from 5 onwards. These were rereads, and I obviously recommend them.

Column 4


Has a typo—I don’t really read to look for typos? But Illuminae has a lot of intentional ones. These books are perfect for space+action+unique format.

Has aliens—I didn’t want to repeat Gemina, so I said Avalon. This has space ships+ mystery+a lot of betrayal+ awesomeness. I don’t know if it’s a series? It should be.

Adult book—I read Lost &Found, but I didn’t really like it. It was super weird and had like no point. Plus the 7 year old character in no way acted like a seven year old.

At least four people die—I used Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows for this (Illuminae and Gemina would also count, but the deaths just feel really detached and not that emotional?) (Also, I put HP7 in my more than 500 pages list as well but since there were other books in that category I didn’t think this counted as repeating). SO MANY TEARS.

A book with picturesAmerican Born Chinese is about accepting who you are. It’s a middle grade graphic novel that combines the three stories that all turn out to be connected with a fantastical twist. It’s a fun, easy read.

And that’s it! If you’re interested in any of these books, I linked their titles either to my review, Shanti’s review, or the goodreads page. I really enjoyed this challenge, and it was fun to try to read books that fit the description or fit books I’d read to the inscription. Thanks to Rain for having the idea! You can see the original challenge here.


Have you ever done a reading challenge? Did you enjoy it? Have you read any of these books? And do you have any recommendations for me?


18 thoughts on “I completed a reading challenge+ bookish recommendations

  1. It only took you half a year?! Damn, I’ll have to try harder next year. 😉 (And harder in general, because I’m still not done! :’) )
    Thank you for being the only other person to take my reading challenge!


    1. Thank you so much for hosting it! (and Gemina didn’t really have a love triangle but I’d done everything else so I just counted it. Also, last week I read a book with an actual love triangle so it counts in my head basically)


  2. Avalon has a sequel, but eh. I found the sequel a bit underwhelming. Every time I see someone recommending When Dimple Met Rishi, I just want to read it more! So, that means it’s one of the books I’m most interested in reading at the moment since EVERYONE seems to love it. I haven’t read The Handmaid’s Tale, but I recently watched the show and found it incredibly thought-provoking.


    1. Okay, well I might not pursue the sequel then. Also, read WDMR! I really enjoyed the Indian representation although I found it quite fluffy (side note: we reviewed it a few months ago if you want to see more thoughts).
      After reading The Handmaid’s tale I’m really interested in the TV show! I’ll have to get around to watching that…


  3. Congrats on completing a reading challenge! I am yet to successfully complete one but I have started and abandoned reading challenges before (because I’m a fickle mood reader lol). I’ve read the Harry Potter series and Illuminae too! Also yes, When Dimple Met Rishi is awesome! As for recommendations, Victoria Schwab is a great author to check out (if you haven’t already read all of her books?).

    Rachana @ Spun


  4. The only reading challenge I ever do is the yearly one on goodreads. I always think they sound like a good idea but then when it actually comes around to doing one… lol
    I really want to read Peter Pan. It’s been on my TBR list for ages.
    p.s. I really like the lettering on your blog title!! 🙂


  5. I love reading challenges. I have a ton going on, and I am always almost joining another. I think they have been good for my reading, making me push a little outside of my norm. I loved Dimple & Rishi and the Illuminae Files is one of my fave series (Need. Obsidio. NOW!) Congratulations on finishing the challenge!


  6. I don’t tend to do reading challenges because planning them out and following through takes a very long time and I’m such a mood reader! But they are fun and I like to participate if one catches my eye every now and then!


    1. ILLUMINAE OMG IT’S SO CREATIVE AND INTERESTING! It made me realise how amazing all space sic-fi is, actually. Like wow. (also read those other books, pls. You will ❤ ❤ ❤ them)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Ohh this was a great post, filled with good books – I am so happy to see Radio Silence here, that book is so underrated and it is so good, everyone should read it 🙂 When Dimple Met Rishi is adorable, we agree! ❤


    1. WHY HASN’T EVERYBODY READ RADIO SILENCE? They need to get their priorities straight honestly. WDMR was just so enjoyable and amazing. I like how we agree about so many books!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I just read The Importance of Being Earnest! I’ve read and seen it (live and the movie) before, but it was still a great pleasure to enjoy. 🙂 It’s been a while since I read The Handmaid’s Tale, but despite its depressing content, it is also amazing, SOOOOO. Yeah. Glad you mentioned that one. I don’t think I’ve read too many others, though. My TBR just keeps getting longer and longerrrr…


    1. I’ve seen the movie and one time Shanti performed a scene from it for her drama class, so I was understandably curious. It’s such a hilarious play! I also really enjoyed The Handmaid’s Tale. I think there’s a lot of books like it that are YA, but it’s quite a lot better than most of them? Also, you’re welcome for the longer TBR haha


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