January 1, 2023 to December 31, 2023




Please join us for the eleventh edition of our Grand Tour of Europe through books! The European Reading Challenge has been going strong since 2012. Choose your own level of commitment to complete the challenge. There is a Jet Setter Prize for the person who visits the most countries between the covers.

Thank you to those loyal readers who have joined in since the beginning! A warm welcome to those joining us for the first time or those coming back after some time off.

THE GIST: The idea is to read books set in European countries or books by European authors. The books can be of any genre – fiction, nonfiction, novels, short stories, memoirs, travel guides, cookbooks, biography, poetry, whatever. You can participate at different levels, but each book must represent a different country -- either written by an author from a different country or set in a different country, no two books from the same country. It's supposed to be a tour!

WHAT COUNTS AS "EUROPE"?: For this challenge, we use the standard 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, and Italy), Scandinavian countries, the really huge Russia, the tiny Vatican City, and the mixed bag of Balkan, Baltic, and former Soviet states. Please see note below about the UK in particular.

These 50 European sovereign states are:
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.
NOTE: Even with Brexit, the United Kingdom is still one country, part of Europe, that includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. One book from any one of these four counts as your one book for the United Kingdom. Challenges should be about fun not about rules, so I'm not going to be the Challenge Police about this. However, when it comes to winning the Jet Setter prize, only one book from one of the UK countries counts.


Participants can read as many books as they want and are encouraged to visit as many European countries as possible. The Jet Setter Prize will go to the person who reads (and reviews) books from the greatest number of different countries (see below). If there is a tie, both (all) win a prize. 

Not everyone wants to compete for a prize, review books, or read a lot of books. I get that. I fall into that camp. As we say in my family -- "Vacation rules apply! You do not have to do anything you do not want to do." You can "complete" the challenge by reading one to five books from different countries. If you want to do more, read more books and compete for the prize.

To participate in the challenge, sign up at the levels below. If you want to go on to compete for the Prize, keep reading!

  • 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.


The participant who reads and reviews the greatest number of qualifying books (more than five) will get a $25 gift card to Bookshop.org. Participants living outside the US will get a $25-equivalent gift card to the Bookshop.org (UK) or the Amazon store in your country, if possible. If you live in a country where none of these options will work, we will try to find something that does or sorry, you are out of luck.

Each book must be by a different author and set in a different country. This means that only one book from one of the four UK countries will count. Only books reviewed count towards the prize.


INSTAGRAM: Since 2021, the European Reading Challenge has not only been on Instagram, but bookstagrammer has won a Jet Setter Prize each year for reading books from all 50 countries! 

So if you bookstagram, feel free to participate in the challenge on IG and we hope you connect back here so we can follow along. Use the hashtag #europeanreadingchallenge so we can find each other. Unfortunately, #ERC2023 is used by a popular car race and come kind of robot competition, so that one doesn't work.

To participate on Instagram, please post some kind of sign up post on IG. This could be a stack of possible books, the first book you plan to read, books you read last year, or a picture of your dog. Whatever. Just post something with the #europeanreadingchallenge hashtag so you have a link to use here on the sign up page and the hashtag so I can find you on Instagram. 

Then post your book reviews and a wrap up post on IG. As you post, come back here to Rose City Reader and link your Instagram posts on the review page and the wrap up page the same way people link to a blog post. Please be sure to copy and past the link to the relevant IG post, not your main IG feed! It's super easy to do on a computer, a little trickier on your phone (look for the three dot above the picture, to the right of your name).

SPECIAL NOTE ABOUT INSTAGRAM: For all of you who participate through bookstagram -- thank you! Please tag me in your European Reading Challenge posts @gilioncdumas and I will share them in my stories.

For those of you who follow me there -- thank you even more! Please note that I had to start a new IG account back in May 2022 when my old one got hacked. Please find me on Instagram @gilioncdumas. My new, real account is my name with my middle initial C, I'm wearing a red shirt, and the posts are up to date.

If you still follow my old, hacked account on Instagram, it is called @giliondumas. It has no middle initial C, I'm wearing a blue sweater, and the posts are old. The account is now private, which is another clue. Please unfollow that account and block it because the hackers occasionally send out evil spam messages. My apologies if anyone got one of the evil messages!

GOODREADS: For the last couple of years, we've done the European Reading Challenge on goodreads. I think it works, but I haven't keep track as well as I planned. If you like posting your book reviews on goodreads, go ahead! Let me know if it is working or if there are problems with it. If no one is participating through goodreads, we can scrap this experiment. 

Link to your Goodreads profile or a specific comment (goodreads confuses me) for your sign up post and then link to your reviews on the review page. Again, please post the links to each review, not your goodread profile. If you have problems, email me.

OTHER WAYS TO PARTICIPATE: Likewise, if you do your bookish activities on other social media, participate in this challenge wherever you like to post. If you can figure out how to post a link to your sign up post and reviews, go ahead!

For example, on Facebook, you can click the "embed post" option (found under those three dots above each post, to the right of your name) and find the URL link for your post. Use it, not the link for your Facebook account. The post has to be public (grey globe). Other social media probably has similar ways to get the links to your posts.

If you simply want to play along right here, leave comments on the right pages with your sign up plan, book reviews, and wrap up.


  • Sign up here under the "PARTICIPANTS" heading below. Please add a link to your challenge post, not your blog home page. I don't like to be rude about this, but we can't find your post if you link to your home page. If you link to your home page and I can't find your sign up post to fix it, I may go ahead and delete your link. 
  • Read all books between January 1, 2023 and December 31, 2023. The December 31 reading deadline was new in 2022. We used to go until January 31 of the following year, but it is too confusing. So now you have to finish reading all your books by December 31. But you have until January 31, 2024 to finish writing all your reviews and your wrap up post. The winner of the Jet Setter Prize will be announced in February 2024. 
  • You do not have to commit to your book choices now; you can change your mind about books at any time.
  • Overlap with other challenges is allowed – and encouraged! If you know of other challenges that overlap with the European Reading Challenge, drop a note in the comments, preferably with a link. Thanks! 
  • Re-reads count. Audiobooks count. E-books count. Self-published books count. Magazines do not count. But anything published as a book between two covers counts, even if it is stand alone short story. Any genre or type of book counts. 
  • As you progress, please link to your reviews on the review list page. You do not have to review the books you read, unless you are competing for the Jet Setter Prize. If you are going for the prize, only books reviewed count toward winning. Link to your review post or post your review in a comment on the review page. When you finish, please link to your wrap-up post on the wrap-up page or list your books and countries in a comment on the wrap-up page.
  • Please copy and paste the challenge button. Please encourage other people to join! This is a great crossover challenge with other "read the globe" type challenges.


Please use a link to your challenge post, not your blog home page.

If you sign up through social media, please use a link to your sign up post not your profile, unless it is not possible to do a sign up post with a link.

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  1. So glad to see you are hosting this again. I didn't complete it last year, but I want to try it again in 2023. Thanks for hosting!

  2. I'm excited to join this year since I do enjoy reading my way around the world. Nudged over the edge by Maphead's success in her wrap up post. I've set my goal at 10 - we'll see how I do! :)
    BTW, this linky always gives me trouble and won't let me choose a pic from my website - wonder if it's because it's hosted by WIX, not Blogger? Consequently mine is all blurry, but.....it still counts :)
    Terrie @ Bookshelf Journeys


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