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If today’s featured photo looks familiar, it’s because I used it a few months ago for my reading challenge post. I’ve decided to share an update on my progress, as there are only about two-and-a-half months left to complete the challenge. While I have updated the original post with the books I’ve read since I began, in this post, I’ll provide my star ratings of each book along with a one line review. If you need another book for your TBR list, perhaps this list will inspire you. I’ve listed the books in order of how many stars I gave each book. The last two books are still in progress, which is why I’ve put them at the end with no star ratings (yet). I’ll update this post as I continue reading more books.



The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

5/5 Stars

A must read.


The Sun Is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon

5/5 Stars
You can read my full review here.


The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling

5/5 Stars
I love that it’s not just the tales, but also Dumbledore’s commentary.


Silver Silence by Nalini Singh

5/5 Stars

My only adult book on this list. I love her world building, so if you like politics in your paranormal romances, this series might be for you.


The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

5/5 stars

An absolutely fantastic book about the science of habits, but written in an easy to understand style.


Graphic Novels for Children and Young Adults: A Collection of Critical Essays edited by Michelle Abate and Gwen Tarbox

4.5/5 stars

I’ll definitely use chapters from this book in future teaching and research situations.


The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

4.5/5 Stars
You can read my full review here.


The Popularity Papers: Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment of Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang by Amy Ignitor

4.5/5 Stars
I absolutely love the writing/illustrative style of this book.


Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

4.5/5 Stars

It’s not 5 stars because teaching it and reading so much fanfic has made me too aware of some plot holes.


Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

4.5/5 Stars

I really enjoyed this book and am looking forward to seeing the movie adaptation.



Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan

4.5/5 Stars
A bit too optimistic an ending to be realistic, but still worth the read.


The Arrival by Shaun Tan

4.5/5 Stars
My favorite wordless picture book/graphic novel.


Beartown by Fredrik Backman

4.5/5 stars

A very intense read, and I loved the multiple POVs and overall narrative structure.


Cinder by Marissa Meyer

4.5/5 stars

So many interesting elements in this book, though I wish it didn’t end on such a major cliffhanger.


The Day of Ahmed’s Secret by Florence Parry Heide and Judith Heide Gilliland

4/5 Stars
Great watercolor illustrations.


The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

 4/5 Stars

The narrative structure of this book creates a confusing reading experience, but I’m still glad I checked it out.


Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

4/5 Stars
I’m really interested to see how this book translates to the big screen.


And I Darken by Kiersten White

4/5 stars

A good read for anyone interested in historical fiction that includes multiple POVs and expansive settings.


Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne

4/5 stars

Teaching this book to undergrads was surprisingly productive.


Shatter Warrior by Sharon Shinn

4/5 stars

A good read, as it’s definitely a graphic novel with a lot of societal implications.


Eight Winter Nights by Laura Krauss Melmed

4/5 stars

Learn the basics about Hanukkah in this lovely picture book.


There is a Bird on Your Head! by Mo Willems

4/5 stars

Like the other books by Willems, an enjoyable read at any age.


The Great Good Summer by Elizabeth Garton Scanlon

3.5/5 Stars
A bit too much focus on religion, but still worth giving a chance.


Stranger Than Fanfiction by Chris Colfer

3.5/5 Stars
Some obvious twists, but it’s a good quick read.


The 100 by Kass Morgan

3.5/5 Stars

The television adaptation is so different, though really, I prefer the fanfiction over both the book series and the show.


The 100: Day 21 by Kass Morgan

3.5/5 Stars
I haven’t felt the need to continue the series.


One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

 3.5/5 Stars

Some twists are too obvious, but I liked the concept.


“Shouldn’t You Be in School?”: All the Wrong Questions 3 by Lemony Snicket

3.5/5 stars

I liked the meta aspect, but I was a bit too annoyed by the adult characters to really enjoy this book.


Lowriders in Space by Cathy Camper

3.5/5 stars

A short read about teamwork that taught me more about lowriders than I anticipated.


Your Lie in April by Naoshi Arakawa

3/5 stars

Another manga I tried this year, this story is engaging enough for me to want to read the next issue.


Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

3/5 Stars
It was an enjoyable read, but not a favorite.


Fast Track by Julie Garwood

3/5 stars

While the dynamics between the ensemble of characters was well-written, I found the male protagonist too controlling.


Cooking Solo: The Joy of Cooking for Yourself by Klancy Miller

3/5 stars

Some great recipes for someone who lives alone, but many of these recipes require way too many ingredients that would prevent me from wanting to attempt these meals.


How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

2.5/5 Stars

Slow read and most of the tips are really obvious.


Fairy Tail, vol. 1 by Hiro Mashima

2.5/5 stars

This story really didn’t grab my attention or inspire me to read the next volume, even though it ended on a semi-cliffhanger.


The Awakening by L.J. Smith

2/5 Stars
The television series is so much better, even with its issues.


Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard

2/5 Stars
The only reason I put in the effort to finish this book is because I bought it.


The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer

2/5 Stars
Truthfully, I checked it out twice and still couldn’t finish it.


When Will This Cruel War Be Over? The Civil War Diary of Emma Simpson by Barry Denenberg

1.5/5 stars

In the form of a published diary, my issue with this book isn’t the writing style, but the fact that I couldn’t really sympathize with Emma, as she is part of a confederate slave-owning family.


Final Book Read:


Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

4/5 stars

While I didn’t LOVE  it, as a Harry Potter fan who enjoys critically engaging with the series and reading tons of its fanfiction, this book is a must read.


Final Thoughts


I’m books away from completing the challenge, so I’ll definitely be picking up the pace a bit. If you have any suggestions for the prompts I’m missing, let me know in the comments below.