Monday, April 19, 2010

Announcing the 2010 EW Summer Books Challenge

I am a huge fan of the magazine Entertainment Weekly, and I especially enjoy their write-ups on books. When I receive my copy every Friday, the first thing I do flip to their book recommendations and see what they have to say about the new releases. I won't say that I agree with them 100% of the time, but I definitely find myself agreeing more often than not.

So a few days ago (thanks to a few fellow book bloggers), I saw their on-line slide show of EW's 18 Books We Can't Wait to Read This Summer. Of course, I immediately wanted to read many (if not most) of them. And then I thought "why not see who else wants to read some of them over the summer?" One thing led to another, and I decided to set up a very informal challenge!

I'm probably one of the worst people to be starting another challenge because I'm not doing a great job with the ones I've currently signed up for. And, I pretty much know that I'm not going to read all 18 of the books, but.....I just couldn't help myself.

Here's EW's list of the summer's must-reads:

THIS BODY OF DEATH by Elizabeth George (April 20)

HALF LIFE
by Roopa Farooki (April 27)

GIRL IN TRANSLATION by Jean Kwok (April 29)

THE INVISIBLE BRIDGE
by Julie Orringer (May 4)

THE LAST STAND
by Nathaniel Philbrick (May 4)

SLOW LOVE: HOW I LOST MY JOB, PUT ON MY PAJAMAS AND FOUND HAPPINESS by Dominique Browning (May 9)

WAR
by Sebastian Junger (May 11)

THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET'S NEST by Stieg Larsson (May 25)

THE PARTICULAR SADNESS OF LEMON CAKE
by Aimee Bender (June 1)

THE SHORT SECOND LIFE OF BREE TANNER
by Stephenie Meyer (June 5)

THE PASSAGE
by Justin Cronin (June 8)

SO COLD THE RIVER
by Michael Koryta (June 9)

THE COOKBOOK COLLECTOR
by Allegra Goodman (July 6)

LUCY by Laurence Gonzales (July 13)

RED HOOK ROAD by Ayelet Waldman (July 13)

I CURSE THE RIVER OF TIME by Per Pettersson (August 3)

YOU LOST ME THERE by Rosecrans Baldwin (August 12)

MOCKINGJAY
by Suzanne Collins (August 24)

Since I want this to be fun and stress-free (just like a summer vacation!), I've decided to include lots of levels, and the first one only challenges you to read one book -- how easy is that? (And I know almost every one of you will be reading MOCKINGJAY before the summer ends.) The names of levels might look familiar to you. Remember those swimming lessons you took at the YMCA when you were a kid?

Levels:

1-3 Books: Polliwog
4-6 Books: Guppy
7-9 Books: Minnow
10-12 Books: Fish
13-15 Books: Flying Fish
16-18 Books: Shark

Details:

The 2010 EW Summer Books Challenge will run from May 1, 2010 through September 6, 2010 (Labor Day). I know summer doesn't officially start until June, but I figure it's always a good idea to get a jump-start on the fun! To join me in this challenge, all you need to do pick your level of participation (you can always go up levels, but not down.) Then after you read a book, just write a review to share your thoughts with others!

Sign Up:

You can join this challenge at any time during this summer. All you have to do is grab the challenge button at the top of this page and write a post announcing your participation in the challenge -- remember you don't need to pick the specific books, just your level. Once you have posted your 2010 EW Summer Books challenge post, come back to this post and click on Mr. Linky. Please leave your name and link directly to your introductory post (not just to your blog’s home page.) If you don’t have a blog, no worries -- you can just leave a comment on this post telling me you want to participate.

On May 1st, 2010 I will place a 2010 EW Summer Books Challenge button in the upper right hand corner of my blog. When you click on this button, you will see a post where all the participants are listed as well as the links to the reviews.

I haven't worked out all of the prize details yet, but I promise that there will be some prizes. I do know that your chances of winning will increase with each review you write. In other words, your name will be thrown in the hat each time you post a review.

I'm asking you to check out the list of books and see if a few don't interest you. Then, I'm really hoping that you'll decide to join me for some fun summer reading!

And remember how I said that I'm not doing so well on a lot of my challenges? I'm only going to sign up for the Guppy Level -- 4-6 books -- I'd hate to not complete my own challenge!

60 comments:

April said...

How fun!! I am going to check these books out and pop back over to join in the challenge!! I hope I could at least become a poliwog, lol!

writergal said...

I too like the EW book reviews and EW in general. I already read WAR. Interesting as a summer read.

Cindy said...

I will check out the list to see if there is any I want to read.

Julie I am like you about not doing so well with the challenges that I am doing right now. Oh well we can only try.

Lydia Ruth said...

I've already read GIRL IN TRANSLATION and absolutely loved it - if the other books EW has included live up to Kwok's debut novel I'm sure this will be an amazing challenge! Thanks so much for planning, Booking Mama!

novelwhore said...

Oh no I commented from a blog I thought was defunct! Please note that the "LydiaRuth" comment above should actually be linked to this account... My apologies!

Ti said...

I have The Passage now and it's going to take a couple of months to get through it. It's huge!! I am very excited about reading it though and Mockingjay? I cannot wait.

Melissa (Betty and Boo's Mommy) said...

I'm really excited about THE PASSAGE, as Justin Cronin was one of my writing instructors in grad school. I've heard this is a hefty novel, though, so it is possible that this might be the only one I finish (and that's an ambitious statement, at that).

Needless to say, even though I truly don't need another challenge, I'm in.

Julie P. said...

I will be doing the reader challenge with you, however. The picks look great. I'll secretly shoot for shark but am realistic enough to promise only poliwog!

Kristin L.

Mari said...

I want to play! I have already read one of the books so I will exclude that one... mostly because I didn't like it (not a genre I would pick on my own). I just posted on this and added the button. Now I need to get the books!

Sandy Nawrot said...

Sigh. YOu know that I have to play. I mean, there are gimmes here. Like The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest. And Mockingjay. And the next Elizabeth George novel. I would read them no matter what. I just can't keep track of all my challenges at this point, but whatever! When I get home this evening, I'll officially sign up!

P.S. I love EW too!

bermudaonion said...

This should be fun - count me in!

Julie said...

While I would love to do this, I just can't. I have way too much to read and can't do anymore books.

I do love EW's book reviews though.

Whitney said...

This sounds like so much fun. I'm going to shoot for a "Fish"...maybe wishful thinking, but I'm going to try. Oh, and I cannot wait for Mockingjay!!

Dawn @ sheIsTooFondOfBooks said...

Very fun - I love the button and the levels you've created!

We just started a subscrition to EW with airline miles, and I do the same as you - flip right to the book review page.

Sandy Nawrot said...

OK! I'm signed up and my post is done!

shelburns said...

What a fun challenge! I have a couple of those titles, so maybe I'll take the plunge and join in.

Beth F said...

There are actually 6 on this list I absolutely want to read -- so I'll be signing up for level 1 or 2. Look for my sign-up post and my link-up later this week.

Vasilly said...

Yay! I'm glad you decided to do this challenge! Count me in. Now I need to figure out what books I'm going to read.

Molly said...

OH, I would LOVE to do this challenge with you! Unfortunately this summer is going to be so hectic with academic pursuits, that I am not sure I will have time to read much of anything else.

I will definitely keep tabs on everyone's progress, and I look forward to reading all the reviews.

Beth said...

I am going to sign up for level 1 although I am hoping to read enough for level 2. Than I will just be excited when I exceed my goals.

FICTION STATE OF MIND said...

great idea I'm in

Emen said...

Can't wait for these books to get out so that I can start reading!

Nor Cal Beagle Rescue said...

Yippee! A new challenge to start the summer off right! Thanks for the invite :)

Heather said...

Ok. I will try to read as many of these as possible. These aren't authors I usually read so this will be nice to branch out my selection.

Kate T said...

I think I can make it to poliwog because there's at least two books on that list that I know I'm going to read for sure!

Me said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Me said...

ok, being me I screwed up. I started a blog instead of facebook. Here is the link:
http://readingreadingandlife.blogspot.com/2010/05/summer-reading-challenge.html

Alipet813 said...

I'm in! I'm reading The Passage right now and loving it. There are several more on the list I want to read as well. I am only promising Polliwog, but hope to do much better.

Carol Fleserieu-Miller said...

Looks like a great list! I have wanted to read a couple of these anyway. Thanks for the challenge.

Karen said...

I'm starting out as a polliwog, but I wouldn't be surprised if I move up along the way! Thanks for the challenge.

Cheryl said...

I'm committing to my first reading challenge! I'm starting off small, though, attempting Guppy status. :) I look forward to reading everyone's reviews.

Grilsgood said...

I have a long list, but then again I read 51 books last month, so lets see how many of these i can read before Sept

Finger Exercises said...

This will be my first challenge. The timing looks good (and who doesn't love to read over the summer) and it looks like I can be as ambitious as I want. Count me in!

Mary said...

I'm in! As much as I'd like to say I'd be a shark I better play it safe and become a flying fish! Housework will need to be done I guess!

NB said...

Hey! This is the first time on your blog, and I'm really excited about the challenge. I am going to strive for guppy status since I only have about a month of summer left for me since nursing school starts the end of June, then sadly I will be lost in the world of nursing education.

Peppermint Ph.D. said...

I'm in as well...Thanks, Mary for finding this challenge so I would find it on your blog :)

Paula said...

Sounds like a great way to pass the time this summer as we move and take road trips. I'll start slow and hopefully complete at least the first level!

Leigh Anne Wilkes said...

Can't wait to start reading - always looking for fun new books so love the list!!

Icedream said...

I officially have my name on the list. I've been working my way through EW's "new classics" so I thought this would be a fun challenge as well. Plus there are some great titles on this list. :)

Just Add Walter said...

I'm a new follower and I am so excited!! :) count me in!

Deb said...

I am new too, but I am ALL in! I will be going for the Shark level. Thanks for doing this. How fun! P.S. I voted for your blog on Scholastic just 30 minutes ago!!! Good luck.

kdreader said...

This looks like a great Challenge! I was planning to read the new Elizabeth George and I've already reserved some of the other books at the library. I'll definitely try the guppy level!

AshleyinWadmalaw said...

Sign me up for Guppy Level!

Jackie said...

I am going for the Guppy Level:)

Suzanne said...

I have half those books on my TBR list! What a great way to "force" me to fit them in between the books I "have" to read! :-)

I'm just like you with challenges, BUT I just can't resist!

I'll post this week and sign up....
Thanks for hosting!

Suzanne said...

Ok, Posted the Challenge and ready to go! Thanks for the nudge to get to these great books this summer!

Coffee Please!?! said...

I'm in ... I wanna be a shark!!!!!!! we'll see how that goes. LOL

Journey2Goal said...

I'm so excited about this challenge! I shared it on both of my blogs and am sharing it w/ my book club! I've already read one book before even knowing about the challenge...the Short Second Life of Bree Tannar, if you are a Twilighter you'll enjoy it!

Journey2Goal said...

Oh yeah! Since I'm starting so late my goal is GUPPY, but I already have 1 down so hope I can read more than my goal by Labor Day!

Breana B. said...

OK, I am going to try for Minnow and see how it goes. I don't belong to any other challanges so maybe I can do this. I am excited and I too already have one down (The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner). And yes Mockingjay should already be crossed off because I can't wait for that one and will read it in about a day. Let's go!

Breana B. said...

OK, I am ready! I ordered 4 books and they should be here shortly. I really can't wait! Minnow here I come!

Gerbera Daisy Mom said...

Wow -- how did I miss this post back in April??? My husband would die without his subscription to EW -- and I too sneak it away to look at their book recs. Alas, none of them really appeal to me (even The Passage, heaven forbid). I would read Aylete Waldman's book. Does 1 book count as a challenge?!!

Amy said...

I love my EW. Just have to hide half of them from the kids because the covers are often a bit disturbing. So it's my little guilty pleasure. Thanks for the challenge!

Esme said...

I am signing up for the polliwog level-as I want an easy summer. There are some great titles here.

Amy said...

I just signed up! Looks like fun! :-)
Amy

Shelly B said...

Thanks so much for inviting me to join! I've been needing to read some of these and your challenge is a great way to motivate me. The levels are what hooked me...won't feel like a failure for not reading ALL the books.

Whitney said...

Where do you want us to post our links once we've reviewed the books we're reading for this challenge?

Here's a link to the first 5 I've read so far.

http://aroomwithoutabook.blogspot.com/2010/07/ive-been-readingjust-not-blogging.html

Suzanne said...

The Challenge is working already! :-) I've finished my first challenge book, The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephanie Meyer! Here's the link:

http://chickwithbooks.blogspot.com/2010/07/short-second-life-of-bree-tanner.html

But I actually have a link posted on my challenge post too!

Laura said...

I wish to participate. I will start with the minnow level. I do not have a blog.

Laura.Adams@ky.gov

Mari said...

I just posted my review for Red Hook Road.

http://www.bookwormwithaview.com/2010/07/review-red-hook-road.html