Monday, January 12, 2015

Vintage Mystery Reading Challenge 2015

Once again I am daring myself to cover both the Golden Age and Silver Age Bingo cards in Bev Hankins' Vintage Mystery Reading Challenge. I throw down the gauntlet at myself. Do better this year!

This year I think I will have 35 books picked out in advance for each card and allocated to the proper categories. The 36th book for each card is one that must been picked out at random to fulfill the "TBR Pile First Line" category. With 70 books pre-selected I won't be vacillating trying to fit books I read to the categories as I did for almost all the books in last year's challenge. This is part of the reason I never successfully completed both Bingo cards. Another reason was I read way too many new books that I had promised to review for PR agents and their new book advertising campaigns.

As I did with last year's challenge I am a starting off with a 19th century whopper of a novel by a writer I think few people have ever heard of, but who was one of Charles Dickens' protégés. With nearly 500 pages of duplicity, conspiracy, murder and kidnapping there is a lot to discuss. That essay will be posted in the next couple of days.

Rules and sign-up page for Bev's challenges can be found by clicking here. Choose one or both bingo cards. It's up to you. Only one Bingo line is required per card in order to complete the challenge. You really need only commit to six books or twelve for both cards. Very easy to do, I think. Only the book obsessed maniacs like me try to read all 72 books.

8 comments:

  1. That is quite a challenge you have set for yourself. Good luck!

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  2. I have set my sites much lower, John. (I haven't signed on yet but I will soon.) I will be watching your progress.

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  3. John, good luck to you! You have raised my curiosity about Dickens' protégé.

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  4. Seventy books is a full year of reading for a lot of people and nearly so for me. I wouldn't have enough time for SF-F, YA, non-fiction, pulp, adventure and the other stuff I read, or hope to. I wish you best of luck with this, you'll probably knock it off in four or five months, right?

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    1. Not as fast at that Rick. I read 86 books last year and abandoned about six or seven as unfinished and they never count in the year's end total. Of that 86 only 58 were for this double-edged Reading Challenge devoted solely to vintage mystery and detective fiction. I read all types of books, both new and old, as I always do though not as much non-fiction as I hoped. Still I barely finished the Golden Age bingo card (with 36 books) last year. I was reading the final book up until the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve. I hope to be done well before December 31 this year.

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  5. Welcome back, John! I'll be interested to see if you stick to your planned reading. I'm actually winging it this year. I found that I put a lot of effort into planning all the books for all my challenges (you want to talk about challenge maniacs...did you notice that I did 47 of the things last year? 47?!), but then quite often went off the plan and just picked books that looked good. We'll see how it goes this year. Looking forward to your reviews, as always!

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    1. Yes, you are known to be quite a challenge addict. Just can't say No can you? ;^) I thought I'd be fine with just winging it. Didn't work. I'm not going to say yes as often as I did to new book reviews. I read exactly 20 new books last year and reviewed less than half of them for this blog. They included both brand new contemporary books and reissues of out of print titles. I got derailed. I think two boxes of 35 books pre-selected with keep me on track.

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    2. No...they're like Lays Potato Chips, I can't do just one.....I am trying REALLY hard not to sign up for challenges that will require me to read very many outside my usual fare. I like to do a couple that force me out of my comfort zone--for one thing, it's good to mix a little something different in with my mysteries, otherwise I start getting tired of writing up the reviews. But there were several last year that wanted me to read new releases or whatnot and it was too much.

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