April Showers! It’s Raining Reading Challenges, Readalongs, and Readathons!

3 Apr

For most people, “spring fever” suggests the urge to open the windows for some fresh blossom-scented air and head outside for a walk. Bookish people do this too, but usually with one or more books in hand. This year, spring fever among the book obsessed corresponds with a glorious shower of new reading events. Let’s list a few I know about:

Roots Readalong @True Book Addict

roots read along button

Michelle of the True Book Addict had the idea to host this readalong, in connection with the new televised mini-series adaptation of Alex Haley’s novel, to begin on May 30 at the History Channel. Since Roots is such a long book, this readalong will continue throughout May, so plenty of time to get the schedule and sign up. I am reading the 30th Anniversary edition, with an introduction by Michael Dyson, and looking forward to the discussions Michelle has planned to host at her blog.

Roots cover


Spring Into Horror @ Seasons of Reading

spring into horror 2016

Michelle is also hosting her Spring Into Horror Read-a-thon at her site for recurring seasonal readathons, Seasons of Reading. I have two books picked out for the week: Painting the Darkness by Robert Goddard and Broken by Karin Fossum.

Painting the Darkness is a darkly threatening Victorian mystery, about a man confronted by a stranger who claims to be his wife’s first fiancé, long believed to be dead.  Is this man an impostor or the real thing?  What will his wife do, and what does she believe? What secrets has she been keeping? I’ve already started this one, and I really like Robert Goddard’s writing–a new find for me!  In Karin Fossum’s novel, one of her writer-protagonist’s characters has come calling on her at night, angry about the way his life is going.  I plan to review this Norwegian writer’s boundary-breaking story at my Northern Lights Reading Project.

#ReadNobels for Travel the World in Books  in April @ Guiltless Reading


My esteemed co-host, Aloi of Guiltless Reading, is hosting our Travel the World in Books (#TTWIB) event for April, combining this ongoing challenge–to read our way around the world with diverse books–with her own fabulous challenge to read books by Nobel prize-winning authors. Her announcement post for April’s combined challenge has all the details, including numerous helpful links to reviews and resources for finding books to choose from. The main thing is to pick ONE BOOK for April, something by an author who garnered the Nobel Prize in Literature. I will be reading Independent People, the most important book by Iceland’s 1955 Nobelist, Halldór Laxness. James Anderson Thompson is the translator of this beautiful paperback in English.

Independent People cover

That’s the lovely thing about the Nobel prize–it tends to motivate skilled translators to take up that author’s works and make them available to more readers worldwide. As another example, Emma of Words and Peace, herself a translator, reviewed 2014 Nobelist Patrick Modiano’s So You Don’t Get Lost in the Neighborhood (in English translation) last year for our October #TTWIB Readathon.  I’m looking forward to answering Guiltless Reader’s fun and stimulating questions slated to chart each week’s progress and cheer on our exploration of Nobel writers.

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon


This overlaps conveniently with Spring Into Horror, so I will probably sign on, though I never go for the full 24 hours. Or keep up with all the mini-challenges. But it is nice to be part of this blogger favorite to see what everyone is reading and how they make room in their lives for our mutual favorite pastime. Signups are open!

And There’s More!

Besides books I am reading for upcoming reviews, I am also looking forward to my Goodreads book club reads:

Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte cover

  • Three books by Jane Smiley are set for our Lit Collective: An Online Reading Retreat. Beginning in April, this will run through August when Michelle (that generous, and very busy girl!) will help get us going with Discussion Board questions on this author.


Will I get all this reading done in April? Probably not! But I love trying, and I love making a start on great books that carry over into the coming months. The best ones bear tremendous fruit–not just another review (although I love writing them!), but something new to think about or understand better about the multifaceted human life all around us.

If you know of other April Reading events you’d like to share, please leave a comment about them!

10 Responses to “April Showers! It’s Raining Reading Challenges, Readalongs, and Readathons!”

  1. faith hope and cherrytea April 3, 2016 at 7:00 pm #

    Love your reading lineup, Lucy! and the xtra challenges of which I wasn’t aware …

    Now, if only I COULD open a window to fragrant blossoms except my breezes are down right freezing and snow filled! So much for Spring 🙂 I’m waiting….

    • Lucy Pollard-Gott April 11, 2016 at 10:27 pm #

      I hope Spring temps and flowers have arrived or are on their way to you soon as well! I plan to “do Dewey” again this year, since we had so much fun checking in during that day last year.

  2. guiltlessreader (@guiltlessreader) April 3, 2016 at 7:28 pm #

    What an exciting April you’ve got in store, Lucy! I’m overwhelmed by the number of challenges you’ve joined but the books are exciting picks. I’ve never tried any of Laxness’s work so am looking forward to seeing what you think. Happy reading (and I know there’s lots of it!)

    • Lucy Pollard-Gott April 11, 2016 at 10:31 pm #

      I am loving the ReadNobels and need to post my Week 2 answers! Most of all, I need to make some progress with Laxness. The first part of Independent People is so brilliant, I’ve reread it a few times, but I need to forge ahead.

  3. truebookaddict April 4, 2016 at 5:47 am #

    A lot of reading fun going on this month…and beyond. Thanks for sharing all of my events (and joining me for them 🙂 ), and for letting me know on Twitter about Read the Nobels and this month’s challenge.

    • Lucy Pollard-Gott April 11, 2016 at 10:33 pm #

      Glad you are joining ReadNobels–what an ambitious list you compiled! I also see a lot of activity on the Spring Into Horror discussion on Facebook.

  4. abetterjulie April 4, 2016 at 12:58 pm #

    Great list! I’m sitting here listening to birds and feeling the sun, wondering how I’m going to fit all of that into April!

    • Lucy Pollard-Gott April 11, 2016 at 10:37 pm #

      Thanks for visiting, Julie! You have a lovely blog, and glad you are doing the ReadNobels and #TTWIB April challenge, designed with such enthusiasm by Guiltless Reader–she’s a wonder!

  5. Sharon @ Faith Hope & Cherrytea April 22, 2016 at 10:52 pm #

    And now…. time to prep for Dewey’s !
    See you off to a great start and cheering for you all the way….

    • Lucy Pollard-Gott April 23, 2016 at 12:13 am #

      Thanks so much, Sharon! I will miss the starting line (at the dentist!) but I’ll see you later on in the morning and cheering you all the way too! 🙂

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