In my efforts to read more, I am going to participate in some reading challenges this year! A girl can always use a little motivation and there are so many good ones out there. There are no public libraries here in Al Ain (gasp!) and knowing I have a limited selection of books available here in the UAE and only a membership at the Al Ain English Speaking School's library (which does hold an adult collection as well), I am choosing challenges that are realistic and flexible!
Here are the challenges I have decided on, including books I have completed so far:
My Year of Reading Dangerously Basics: Read 12 books you deem "dangerous" in 2009. Books may be banned or challenged books, new-to-you genres, books that seem to inhabit a permanent space on your stacks, or authors you're afraid of.
01. The Giver by Lois Lowry - because a "perfect world" or utopia always is scary underneath 02. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison - very powerful read 03. Life of Pi by Yann Martel 04. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood 05. Princess: the True Story of Life Inside Saudi Arabia's Royal Family by Jean Sasson 06. Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi 07. The Olive Readers by Christine Aziz 08. The Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea 09. The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
a: Atwood, Margaret. The Handmaid's Tale. a: Aziz, Christine. The Olive Readers. a: The Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea c: Cleary, Beverly. Ramona Quimby, Age 8. d: Dahl, Roald. The BFG. d: Dahl, Roald. George's Marvellous Medicine. l: Lowry, Lois. Number the Stars. l: Lowry, Lois. The Giver. m: McCaughrean, Geraldine. The Kite Rider. m: Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye. m: Martel, Yann. Life of Pi. n: Nafisi, Azar. Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Mrmoir in Books. s: Sasson, Jean. Princess: The True Story of Life Inside Saudi Arabia's Royal Family s: Santos, Marisa de los. Belong to Me. s: Salinger, JD. The Catcher in the Rye. w: White, E.B. Stuart Little.
The Well-Seasoned Reader (FINISHED) Basics: Read 3 books between 01.01.09 - 03.31.09 that have a food name in the title OR be about cooking/eating OR have a place name in the title OR be about one (or more) person's travel experience OR be about a specific culture OR be by an author whose ethnicity is other than your own.
01. Number the Stars by Lois Lowry 02. The Kite Rider by Gerldine McCaughrean 03. Life of Pi by Yann Martel 04. Princess: The True Story of Life Inside Saudi Arabia's Royal Family by Jean Sasson ****************continued to read after challenge completed: 05. The Olive Readers by Christine Aziz 06. The Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea
01. Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary 02. Stuart Little by E.B. White
I'll be updating this post and sidebar with the books I have read. All the challenges allow cross-overs which I am counting on. I am keeping track of all books I read with exception to picture books (too voluminous) but am planning on lots of children's books. I also have a few ongoing personal challenges including reading all books awarded the Newbery and Caldecott Medal.
Al Ain is the fourth largest city in the United Arab Emirates and is approximately 1.5 hours from both Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Al Ain (meaning "the spring" in Arabic) is referred to as the "garden city" of the UAE. Approximately 10% of the population in the UAE are Western expats.