EUROPEAN READING CHALLENGE

The European Reading Challenge
January 1, 2012 to January 31, 2013



THIS IS THE SIGN UP PAGE (SEE LINKY BELOW).
TO POST A REVIEW, GO TO THIS PAGE.
TO ADD YOUR WRAP UP POST, GO TO THIS PAGE.

THE 2013 EUROPEAN READING CHALLENGE IS LIVE NOW -- GO TO THIS PAGE.

Welcome to the European Reading Challenge – where participants tour Europe through books. And win prizes. 2012 is the first year for this challenge.  Please join me for the Grand Tour!

The gist: The idea is to read books by European authors or books set in European countries (no matter where the author comes from). The books can be anything – novels, short stories, memoirs, travel guides, cookbooks, biography, poetry, or any other genre. You can participate at different levels, but each book must be by a different author and set in a different country – it's supposed to be a tour. (See note about the UK, below)

What counts as "Europe"? For this challenge, we will use the list of 50 sovereign states that fall (at least partially) within the geographic territory of the continent of Europe and/or enjoy membership in international European organizations such as the Council of Europe. This list includes the obvious (the UK, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy), the really huge Russia, the tiny Vatican City, and the mixed bag of Baltic, Balkan, and former Soviet states.

Note: Technically, the United Kingdom is one country that includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.  So one book from any one of these four should count as your one book for that one country. I'm not going to be a stickler about it because challenges should be about fun not about rules.

Here is the list, in alphabetical order: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and Vatican City.

LEVELS OF PARTICIPATION

Five Star (Deluxe Entourage): Read at least five books by different European authors or books set in different European countries.

Four Star (Honeymooner): Read four qualifying books.

Three Star (Business Traveler): Read three qualifying books.

Two Star (Adventurer): Read two qualifying books.

One Star (Pensione Weekender): Read just one qualifying book.

Alternate Arrangements

Agritourisimo: For foodie readers – read a selected number (your choice) of food-related books written by European authors or about European food, cooking, restaurants, culinary traditions, farming, winemaking, etc. Again, each book must be by a different author and set in a different country.

Youth Hostel: For participants under 18 only – read a selected number of books (your choice), by European authors or set in a country of Europe. (Adults reading YA books still participate as adults, not in this sub-category).

Culture Vulture: For those obsessed with prize-winners – read a selected number of books (your choice) that won a major literary prize in its original country. Any of the following literary prizes would count, but there may be others: Anton Wildgans (Austria), Magnesia Litera (Czech Republic), Finlandia (Finland), Le Grand Prix du Roman (France), German Book Prize (Germany), Balint Balassi Memorial Sword (Hungary), Icelandic Literary Prize (Iceland), Bagutta (Italy), Batty Weber (Luxembourg), Norwegian Critics (Norway), NIKE (Poland), Camões (Portugal), Russian Booker (Russia), Prešeren (Slovakia), Premio Planeta de Novela (Spain), August (Sweden), Swiss Book Prize (Switzerland), Sedat Simavi (Turkey), Shevchenko National (Ukraine), Booker (United Kingdom).

PRIZES

Only books reviewed count towards prizes.  Challenge participants are encouraged to write reviews, but are not required to do so except to qualify for a prize.

Jet Setter Grand Prize: The participant who reads and reviews the greatest number of qualifying books (more than five) will get a $25 gift card to Powell's Books (can be used in store or on line).  Participants living in Europe (or anywhere else Book Depository goes) will get a $25-equivalent gift card to Book Depository. Each book must be by a different author and set in a different country.

Agritourisimo: In addition to qualifying for the Jet Setter Grand Prize, the participant who reads and reviews the greatest number of qualifying books in the Agritourisimo category will receive a $10 gift card to Powell's Books.

Youth Hostel: In addition to qualifying for the Jet Setter Grand Prize, the under 18 participant who reads and reviews the greatest number of qualifying books in the Youth Hostel category will receive a $10 gift card to Powell's Books.

Culture Vulture: In addition to qualifying for the Jet Setter Grand Prize, the participant who reads and reviews the greatest number of qualifying books in the Culture Vulture category will receive a $10 gift card to Powell's Books.

OFFICIAL RULES
  • Read all books between January 1, 2012 and January 31, 2013.  I like having 13 months so there is extra time to finish after the holidays. 
  • Sign up here using Mr. Linky under the "PARTICIPANTS" heading below. If Mr. Linky isn't working, please leave your link in a comment and I will make a list myself. Please use a link to your challenge post, not your blog home page.   
  • If you do not have a blog, please leave a comment below with the level you are signing up for, and your list of books if you want to name them now, and I will add you to the list.
  • You do not have to commit to your choices now; you can change your mind about books at any time.
  • Overlap with other challenges is allowed -- and encouraged! The Venice in February Challenge is just one idea. Others? Please leave links in comments and I will add them.
  • Re-reads count. Audiobooks count.  E-books count.  Self-published books count.
  • As you progress, please let us know by leaving comments with links to progress reports and reviews.  Reviews are not necessary, unless you are going for one of the prizes, in which case only books reviewed count.  If you do not have a blog, put your reviews or reports in a comment on this post.
  • You can copy and paste the button. Or, if you want me to send you the code, please leave a comment with an email and I will. I cannot figure out the fancy ways of giving button instructions.

PARTICIPANTS: SIGN UP HERE
(To post a review, go to this page)

Please sign up using Mr. Linky below.  Please leave the link for your challenge page, not your blog home page.





REVIEWS

To post a review or see the list of reviews, please go to this page.

IDEAS

My shelves are crammed with books set in European countries and/or written by European authors.  I hardly know where to begin!

But I could start with this list of books with French Connections, or this list of books set in Venice.

Other sources of inspiration:

The Venice in February Challenge also has a list of ideas.

The Black Sheep Dances is hosting an Eastern European Reading Challenge.

The perpetual Nordic Challenge on Notes from the North.

Murder is Everywhere is a collaborative authors' blog about their mystery novels set in various international locations.

The World Literature Forum also has an active European literature forum

And please check out other participants' sign up posts listed in Mr. Linky (above) for ideas and inspiration.





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74 comments:

Sandra said...

This one is right up my alley. Count me in. I'll post about it and link when I can.

Bev Hankins said...

I'm in! I know my first book...but I'll have to think about the rest.

Meg @ A Bookish Affair said...

Hi! I just came across your challenge on the Novel Challenges blog. I'm so in!

Meg @ A Bookish Affair said...

Could you please send me the button html? I want to make it a little smaller so I can fit it in my sidebar.

abookishaffair(at)gmail(dot)com

Rose City Reader said...

Welcome! I think this one will be fun. Thanks for signing up.

Meg: I'll send you the button code.

thewriteedge said...

This sounds like fun -- count me in! The form on the challenge post didn't accept my blog address, so here it is:

thewriteedge.wordpress.com

Also, could you please email me any buttons or links connected to the challenge so I can post it in my book reviews section? Thanks! My email address is egarg0201[at]gmail.com

Incidentally, love the picture of Mt. Hood. We lived in Tualatin for five years before moving for a job change and still miss it!

Rose City Reader said...

thewriteedge: Glad you are joining us! I look forward to seeing what books you pick.

I will email you the button code. Please come back to Mr. Linky with the link to your actual challenge post, not just your blog post. (I think if you put in the http://www part it may work.) If it doesn't work, tell me and I'll figure something else out.

Have fun and happy reading!

Ally said...

I am in! Most books I read are my European writers, so this should be easy :)
I will link one of these days! :)

Ally said...

P.S. There's a Venice in February Challenge hosted my yours truly and Bellezza, if your readers would like to join in the fun! :)

Bev Hankins said...

I have updated my list with all my planned reads.

Rose City Reader said...

Christina: Thanks for signing up! For the life of me, I can't get my comment to post on your blog. So I hope you see this.

In the Woods is on my TBR shelf too -- good idea.

I look forward to reading your reviews. Especially on the Hedgehog book. My book club just read it and we were, on the whole, disappointed. So I'm curious about what you think.

booklover206 said...

I'm excited about this!

J.G. said...

Oh my goodness, you are feeding my habit here. All those new prizewinners (*swoon*)! I will be back with a sign-up.

Schmackofatz! said...

Count me in, Chickapee! I don't know what the button/link thing is, and I don't have a challenge page. What do I do?

Rose City Reader said...

Ally: I added links to the Venice challenge. I'll put my own post up soon.

Bev: Thanks for the full list -- temptation!

BookLover: Can't wait to see what you sign up for!

Jane: Wonderful! And I'm in again for the Birth Year Reading Challenge if you do it again.

Sisty: You can make a "challenge page" by putting a post on your page listing the books you are going to read. Argitourisimo? Then add the link to that page here, using Mr. Linky. I'll explain the button thing to you later. Or you can just list your books in a comment to this.

thewriteedge said...

My list is up! Check it out on my blog on the European Challenge page under the "BookEnds" section. I'm pretty excited about this; can't wait to start reading!

o said...

Great challenge! I'm definitely up for it, but need a few days to figure out my reads :)

Rose City Reader said...

thewriteedge: Great! I'll come by to see your list right now.

o: Can't wait to see your official list!

Tracey: Yippy! Too bad you already read the Hedgehog book!

southcoastsounds said...

Great idea. I've read quite a few European books this year but the I live in Europe!

Rose City Reader said...

SCS: I hope you sign up! You would be in the running for the Jet Setter award if you read more than five.

Lorelei said...

I am excited to learn more about Europe and I love to read.

Rose City Reader said...

Lorelei: I look forward to seeing what books you pick!

Tanya Patrice said...

For some reason, I can't sign up using Mr. Linky - but I'm down for this challenge :-) Here's my list

Justice said...

I'm having issues adding my link to Mr Linky (weird!), but here's my post :) http://cheapblackpens.tumblr.com/post/14078620341/2012-reading-challenges

L.L. said...

I am unable to sign into the linky, but I am participating! Here is my link: http://thestorygirlbookreviews.blogspot.com/2011/12/sunday-salon-they-just-keep-coming.html

neer said...

Hi.

Want to participate. When is the last date for signing up?

Rose City Reader said...

Tanya, Justice, and L.L.: I don't know what the deal is with Mr. Linky. I think he and I are going to have to break up. Thanks for leaving your links. I will create a list of participants and you will be on it!

neer: There is no deadline for signing up. The sooner the better because we all want to see what books you pick! But there is no official deadline, so people can sign up right up to January 31, 2012.

Margot said...

Count me in on the European Challenge. I'm so ready to travel, know the countries I want to visit, but don't have a list - yet. I'm going to search out your resources.

Mr. Linky isn't cooperating for me either so here is my sign-up post: Joyfully Retired.

Jane said...

Count me in, too. (Even if Mr. Linky won't.)

http://janesbookshelf.blogspot.com/2011/12/european-reading-challenge.html

Rose City Reader said...

Margot & Jane: Thanks for leaving your links. I am going to create a list of participants since Mr. Linky is being pesky. I hope to do that tomorrow (crossing my fingers) or, if work gets in the way of my hobbies, ASAP.

Annie said...

I'll travel with you ! I'm French, but I think I'll try to read books from other countries. Perhaps small ones ?

wordsandpeace.com said...

Thanks for this challenge. I'm aiming at 7. do you know about my reading challenge?
http://wordsandpeace.com/2011/11/15/books-published-in-the-first-years-of-my-life-challenge-%E2%80%93-2012/

Rose City Reader said...

Annie: You are the first French participant. How exciting! Will you be reading small books, or books from small countries? :)

Emma: And you are the second French participant! Although in America now, I see. Thank you for signing up!

Ally said...

My post is up! :)

Introverted Jen said...

I don't know what I'll read, but I'm signed up! Thanks for hosting!

Mari Reads said...

Joining in on the fun.

Alex said...

This looks like such an interesting challenge, I can't wait to start. Here is my link
http://thechildrenswar.blogspot.com/2011/12/omg-another-list-2012-reading.html

Rose City Reader said...

Ally, Jen, Mari, and Alex: Thanks for signing up!

Marny said...

Looking forward to this one :-)

Gwendolyn B. said...

I'm in! Thanks for hosting, and Happy New Year!

Peek a BooK! said...

I'm here from Italy! ^_^
I'll try with "Five Star" level.

Valentina
www.peekabook.it

Alex said...

Just posted my first review for the European Reading Challenge at

http://thechildrenswar.blogspot.com/2012/01/my-brothers-shadow-by-monika-schroder.html

Stop by and have a look!

neer said...

Hi

I am in.

Que Bella said...

Hi, I just found your challenge earlier today. This will be a pleasure to do! Thanks for hosting.

dog eared copy said...

Oh noes! just found out about this challenge this morning and I'm already fully committed, probably over-committed, in terms of challenges for the year! But I wish you success and will definitely make it a point to sign up for 2013!

from one experience into the next said...

Cool! I'm in :)
I am living in Europe myself but for the past two years I lived in Asia so it's a challenge at the right moment!

Michelle @ The True Book Addict said...

Great challenge and thanks for the 13 months!

Ataleofthreecities said...

Excellent idea - question: Do the books have to be translated in English? My review would of course, but I would like to read the originals, where I can...

Rose City Reader said...

Big thanks to everyone for signing up and leaving comments. Sorry I got so far behind in individual responses.

Welcome to the challenge!

Ataleofthreecities: Of course you may read the books in their original language. That isn't a possibility for most of us, but what a wonderful reading experience for a polyglot! Happy reading!

Ashlerose said...

http://ruinistheroad.tumblr.com/europeanreadingchallenge
I can't wait!
I use tumblr, i never use blogspot.

goldmoon said...

I found this challenge posted on a friend's blog. I love it :-)

Madeleine said...

I'd love to do this challenge, I read a fair amount of European books :)

Rose City Reader said...

Ashlerose: Thanks for signing up! Tumblr is fine -- no need for blogspot. But I don't have a tumblr account, so I couldn't leave a comment for you. Welcome!

goldmoon: Glad you like it! Let us know is you sign up.

Madeleine: Welcome! I'll come visit your sign up post right now.

Amber said...

Hola. I'm a little late on signing up, but happy I found it.

I definitely plan on tackling some Russian and German lit, as I somehow inexplicably neglect to read those...

laraemilie said...

I've just found out your challenge it's a great idea! I'm a bit late but I'm still in. I've tried to use Mister Linky but I didn't do it properly sorry (my blog's http://powers-of-words.blogspot.com)

And just a question: do we have to read only in English or does it work in other languages as well?

laraemilie said...

I just realised I didn't do it properly again... So the address of my blog with the post is: http://powers-of-words.blogspot.com/2012/02/european-reading-challenge.html

and please I'd like to be in the 5 star category. Thanks

laraemilie said...

Thanks for fixing all my mess... As you can see I'm not that good with blogs yet ;)
Yes I live in Europe, so it might be a little bit easier for me... But as it is my first challenge I decided it would be ok...
One more question. I suppose I have to post my reviews in English or can I put some in French as well?
Good luck to everybody!

Lorelei said...

I don't know how to update my reading list. I did finish the book Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts by Lucy Dillon and have a review on my web cardsnpages.blogspot.com. I would be happy to know how to update in the future. Thanks for hosting this challenge.

TracyK said...

Hi, this is a great challenge and I am joining up today. Will finish my first book for the challenge soon and add a review.

taufe-taufkleid said...

Yes also I consider those sites with minimal/no shipping rates. That's why I prefer Cheap Books Online as this provides no shipping worldwide so its cheaper than what you buy from your nearest bookstore..

Shonna said...

Just found out about this challenge and had to join. Already at seven countries!

Mary said...

I have been reading for this challenge for a couple weeks now, but had to wait to get my blog created before joining. I'm signing up at the highest level, but will be reading far more than five books. Actually, I hope to read one book from each of the countries listed, plus one for each of the four parts of the U.K. To date I have read six books (Poland, Wales, France, England, Armenia, Russia) and have started one for Spain and one for Ukraine. I have lined up book for all of the other countries, though I may swap some out if I find even better choices over the next few months. As I get my reviews added to my blog, I will link them on your reviews post. Cheers!

Rose City Reader said...

Welcome newcomers! And thanks to all for posting their reviews. I've had fun reading all of them!

Mary: I am afraid their is something wrong with your link. It takes me to my blogger dashboard, not your challenge sign up post or even your blog. I will keep trying to find you. Welcome aboard!

Mary said...

I am trying again. Please delete the first two, LOL. And let me know if the third try is not the charm!

zzz said...

Ups, it seems I posted in the wrong thread (sorry) so here it is again:
Is it too late to join? (I just saw it on my friend's blog) Though I've already read this year few that would qualify. I do have blog but posting my book reviews mostly on goodreads.

Amber said...

Hello, I relocated my blog, so the review I've posted is a dead link...do you mind if I re-sign up? And post the review again?

Rose City Reader said...

A little catch up:

Yes, sign up is always open.

Post new links to sign up here, review links on the review page, and I will try to go back and try to remove bad and duplicate links.

audesapere said...

Better late than never! I just found this.

studentspyglass.com said...

I discovered your blog this morning and am absolutely loving all of it! I've thought about joining reading challenges before but never really known where to start, but this challenge sounds great! As well as that, your list of challenges inspired me to take the plunge and sign up to a few, so thanks so much for the motivation!

I've signed up for this challenge, at the Five Star (Deluxe Entourage) level and am looking forward to getting started.

maphead said...

Better than than never indeed!
Sign me up!

Mary said...

Added a review for Ironfire, for the country of Malta. Great book!

Miguel said...

Hope there's still room for one more.

Mary said...

Left a review for Watching the Door, for Northern Ireland. Had planned to add a review for a book on San Marino as well, but it turned out it was about San Marino, California, not San Marino the country. Oops!

Peek-a-booK! said...

Hi there!
I completed the challenge, you can find my post about it here:

http://www.peekabook.it/2012/01/european-reading-challenge-2012.html

I didn't have enough time for the reviews ;)

Thanks for hosted the challenge! :)

Valentina
www.peekabook.it

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