At the beginning of 2017, I set a goal that I wanted to do more of what I loved to do but didn’t seem to have the chance to do. One of those things included reading. I set a reasonable goal to read at least 26 books. But in the middle of trying to deal with emotional situations, financial situations, and a renovation, I usually just ended up using my free time making sure not to exert much effort to anything. I spent more time binge-watching shows than burying my nose in a book.

Then the summer came and I promised myself again that I would read more since I’ve had some time to relax and gather myself. But when the end of the year came and I fell short.

This year, I plan is to be more proactive and actionable with the goals that I’ve set for myself. I’ve made procrastination a horrible habit last year and I’m working hard to break that. One of my goals was also to read more and learn more from what I read. I’ve been on the hunt to find new reads and I’ve noticed many others that want to do the same.

Book Girl Magic Reading Challenge

I discovered a challenge on Instagram that caught my eye so I’m definitely going to give it a try. And I wanted to share it with you all just in case you’re looking for something to read or you’re interested in doing a reading challenge. Perhaps you’re like me and you need a little motivation to get back into the habit of reading.

The goal is to read one book based on a theme set for each month, but I’ve decided to double up on this challenge. The book chosen by the creator of the group for this month is The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, which is being turned into a movie, and my additional selection is to finish reading Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates that I started last year. Another part of the challenge that I’ve added for myself is to choose a book from my own library to read. (Although I did buy When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi because I HAD to add this to my MomCave.)

truths and freedoms - brandie freely

Aside from this challenge, I also just finished reading Truths and Freedom by Brandie Freely. Excuse the fingerprints. I’ve been following her on Instagram for some time. I’ve also frequented her blog so in my head, she was my distant homegirl that I hadn’t talked to in a while. I always loved her style of writing and the book did not disappoint. Through poetry and essays, Brandi narrates the journey from her past to where she is now and all that she has learned about life and herself along the way. It’s a short, but interesting read that could easily take about 2 hours if uninterrupted.

I’m off to a good start since I’ve already finished one book, finishing another today, and will have read at least 2-3 more before the month is over. It helps to leave the television off, even if that means missing the return of The Good Doctor. Last night, I fell asleep on Chapter 5 of The Hate U Give. That was definitely a nostalgic moment.

What’s on your bookshelves and nightstands? Are you participating in any reading challenges this year? Leave some suggestions in the comments!

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  1. Daenel T.

    January 9, 2018 at 2:29 pm

    Oooooh, I love this challenge. I set a reading goal for myself this year too. I mean, you’d think since I’m a librarian and all… But, nope. I haven’t been reading much at all because “Underground”, “This Is Us”, “Blackish”, “The Walking Dead”, and “The Handmaid’s Tale”. But this? I think I can swing.
    I read “The Hate U Give” and loooooved it. I’m not a YA reader at all, but this book hit me on so many levels {momma, sister, daughter, friend, etc.}. I can’t wait to see the movie.

    1. Rae

      January 9, 2018 at 3:59 pm

      I remember hearing about his because of you! Then I bought the book, but it had been sitting on my shelf for some time.

      Binge-watching is addictive and it’s a hard habit to break.

      Good luck with your reading goals this year!

  2. Bee Lola

    January 10, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    Hey girl! I saw this article today and figured you’d love it too if you already read When Breath Becomes Air;

    1. Rae

      January 14, 2018 at 6:13 pm

      oh wow!! Thank you!!!

  3. Dre

    January 12, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    I saw this challenge on Instagram earlier! I think I will give it a shot. I have The Hate U Give and Dear Martin on my TBR, so I’ll just bump them up for January. Thank you for sharing!

    1. Rae

      January 14, 2018 at 6:14 pm

      I heard that Dear Martin was a good book. I’ve seen it circulate through pictures on Instagram as well as Twitter. It’s definitely on my To-Read List.

  4. Nicole

    January 18, 2018 at 7:13 am

    This is such a good challenge! I am always trying to find the time to disconnect from screens and read more. Because reading my favorite thing to do as a kid. Currently trying to finish One Hundred Years of Solitude.

    1. Rae

      February 7, 2018 at 10:07 am

      I spend waaaaayyy too much time in front of a screen. I’m in front of one for about 8 hours a day and when I’m at home, my phone or the tv is in my face. I’ve been doing a good job so far this year of only being in front of the screen unless I absolutely have to, and devoting more of that “screen time” to reading a book or writing something. I’m loving the transition so far.

  5. Vaneese

    February 5, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    I’m certainly down for this challenge! Last year, I tripled my reading from the year before, but didn’t meet my Goodreads challenge goal. This year, I’ve increased my goal and I think I can do it.
    I read both THUG and Between the World and Me. Both were great reads! I hope you enjoy(ed) them! One thing that helped me last year was coming up with a list of “must reads” so that I wasn’t wasting time searching for what to read next. I think your idea of making sure you read one from your TBR pile is brilliant. I think I’m going to steal that. :)

    1. Rae

      February 7, 2018 at 10:08 am

      I need to update my Goodreads account. I didn’t think people still used that so maintaining my profile kinda fell by the wayside.

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