At the beginning of 2015, I signed up for the Goodreads reading challenge. It is basically a reading target you set for yourself and keep a track of the progress throughout the year. Last year was pretty lackluster in terms of reading for me. I read very few books and some of them were the breezy reads like Ruchita Misra’s I do! Do I? So this year I started out with 24 books for the year. I later revised it to 30 books to match the HT Brunch #BrunchBookChallenge. Am now trying to kill two birds with one stone 😉
I am pretty pleased with my progress so far. I read tonnes of books in February and March due to a vacation and 2 work related trips. Yes it was insane travel. I read on those long haul flights, taking only occasional breaks for meals. So here ladies and gentlemen is my progress update!
Am 6 books ahead of schedule!!! Yippeee *does a silly dance and jumps around with glee*
Do you wanna know the books I read? Okay, here goes the list
The Casual Vacancy – JK Rowling
I was really really looking forward to reading this. Maybe because my expectations from the author were very high, this turned out to be an okay read. JKR weaves a complex web of inter related characters. Each character has layers that get peeled one by one. Read it for the fantastic way she interlaces lives of people in a small town
Sacred Games – Vikram Chandra
A long long novel. This tells the story of an average policeman past his prime and a dead gangster. The book is set in Mumbai primarily but the narrative branches of to sub stories. Chandra tries to tie it all back in the end. The result is a fairly interesting read that takes you to pre partition punjab, the underbelly of Mumbai and even the oriental waters of Thailand where a Don rules from a boat!
Seriously… I’m Kidding – Ellen Degeneres
This is one of the few non fiction books I have read… and enjoed. Ellen talks about random stuff. From her lesbian partner to being a covergirl model and keeps you engaged. A light read, I was done with this in three hours over a bus ride 🙂
The Perks of being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky
Now here is an interesting one. It started out a little vague but soon turned into a gripper. You see the world through the eyes of a Charlie, who is surprised people notice him. It is a coming of age book where a loner discovers friends.
Maids of Misfortune – M Louisa Locke
Set in 18th century San Francisco, this book is a murder mystery. Nothing unusual, nothing grand. It is an interesting summer read. Annie, the lead heroine is a widow who pretends to be a maid in a household rocked by murder as a threat of bankruptcy hangs above her head. If you like strong female leads, this book is for you!
Only Time Will Tell – Jeffrey Archer
The Clifton Chronicles part 1. Jeffrey Archer decided to break a story into seven (maybe) parts and sell each book on its own. If you are an Archer fan, you will love this… the story of Macie and Harry Clifton and their humble beginnings.
The Fourth Estate – Jeffrey Archer
Archer’s tale of two media barons, based on real life Robert Maxwell and Rupert Mudroch is so so gripping that I had my nose in this book anytime I was not sleeping or working. I even read this on the way to my coffee break at office. I am not kidding. Ask my colleagues, they made plenty fun of me for this!
Shopaholic to the Stars – Sophie Kinsella
I was a fan of the Shopaholic series till I read this one. In each book before this, the protagonist Becky Bloomwood is shown as a loyal friend, loving wife, doting mother and a dutiful daughter. A bit materialistic but basically adorable. In this book, she is vain and inconsiderate. Not at all like the Becky we have all come to love! The fact that the story does not end in the book and there are several loose threads does not help. Was Ms. Kinsella trying to pull an Archer will this one? Epic Fail!
The Maze Runner – James Dashner
I picked this because a guy next to me on a flight was reading this. He read this throughout and when I asked him about the book, he said it was an interesting read. What helped was there is a movie made on this book which was available as in-flight entertainment. Reading this book taught me not to take recommendations from random strangers! Sigh…
The Scorch Trials – James Dashner
This is book #2 in The Maze Runner series. The first book had unexplained bits and I read this for just that.
The Death Cure – James Dashner
Bizarre is what I would call this. The book made no sense at all to me. Again, I read this only for the yet (!) unexplained answers from books 1 and 2
The Sins of the Father – Jeffrey Archer
Book 2 of the Clifton Chronicles. It picks off from where book 1 ended just like that… no preamble. This is one series you have to read in order. The saga of the characters continues and we get more of Hugo Barrington in this book. And no, am not giving away the story. Go read it for yourself! I loved it and hopefully, so will you…
Best Kept Secret – Jeffrey Archer
This book introduces us to the third generation of Cliftons and makes me fall in love with Emma’s character a little more. New enemies of the family spring up!
Be Careful What You Wish For – Jeffrey Archer
Full of sabotage and some brilliant coups by the friends and well wishers of the Clifton family. A delightful read indeed 🙂
So finally that is my reading list. Except The Maze Runner series, I enjoyed reading each and every one of them. At one point, I was hoping to finish the challenges by June. But then, I would need a few more vacations and a few more work trips to accomplish this 🙂