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50 Book Pledge: Part Deux

January 4, 2016

Happy 2016!

In 2015, I participated in my first 50 Book Pledge (

And………..I hit 29!

At least at 29, I’m pleased to be in good numeric company with a couple early 90s tunes by Robert Plant & Gin Blossoms.

My 2015 bookshelf:


A few of these books were blogger recommendations, much obliged!

My 2016 bookshelf:


A blank canvas as of yet.

I encourage any and all to join the fun, you can also do different pledge amounts if 50 is too much/too little.

As always, I love hearing about what people are reading in the comments – happy reading!

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  1. A challenge, pledge and empty bookshelf — I’m intrigued! I haven’t heard of this and will check the link you provided.

  2. Dude, you broke 50%!! Given everything else you’ve done this year, I’d say you did amazingly well! I really like this 50 book pledge. I am in favour of everyone reading tons (I’m a big reader myself)!

    I participated in a To Be Read 20 challenge in 2015, meaning I had to read 20 unread books in the house before buying a new one, and finished up mid-August.

    I have a whole new set of challenges for myself for 2016, and last year’s results, on the TBR-A page at the top of the KMA!

    Way to go Geoff! Good luck this year. I know you’ll hit 50… and beyond!

    • Haha – above 50% is true, as students sometimes say, Five – Oh and good to go!
      I really like that TBR challenge, congrats on completing it!

      • They’re happy with 50%? Really? Wow. I wasn’t the greatest student but I usually averaged out around 70! Haha

        The TBR Challenge was soething I heard about from evastalker (that’s our infernal HMO’s lovely lady). She was doing a TBR 20 and I joined in. It was great fun.

        This year my goals are quite different. Instead of TBR 20, I’m just doing TBR. I’m gonna start at one end of the bookshelves here at the house and see how far I get! I’ve also resolved to read all of Ernest Hemingway’s fiction in 2016. I’m already 3/4 through his first novel! And of course I’ll still be going to the library so I’ll have a ton of stuff from there.

        2015 ended up being a really good year for me, reading-wise. I did the TBR 20, and supplemented from the library, and finished off at 166 books. Now, if you check out the TBR-A page at the top of the KMA main page, you can see from the list that many of those were graphic novels, and those don’t always take as long as a full novel. But, as my lovely wife will attest, I still take my time and absorb the artwork as much as the story. But I also read a ton of other stuff too, and it’s all to the good!

        My secret? I have a book on the go in every room of the house. That way, no matter where I go, I can pick one up!

  3. Congratulations on your 29! What did you think of The End of Your Life Book Club? I like the title. šŸ™‚

    • Thanks Danica – it was an ideal way to start the challenge last year, as it was full of discussions about books well worth reading!

  4. Hey! Good job on your reading challenge!! I am reading a psychology book on the highly sensitive person. I just started it. But, I read a couple of graphic novels over the vacation too, so I feel I have really broken the reading wall I had up in 2014.

    • Thanks Sarca – and kudos to breaking down reading walls! I found myself in an October/November reading funk last year, but I’m enjoying being back in reading mode these days

  5. jprobichaud permalink

    29 is a pretty sound number. I don’t know if I hit that myself but I think I can safely blame it on the roadblock of a book I ran up against in Thomas Pynchon’s “Mason & Dixon”. I finally gave that one up and have started into the final book book in Follett’s latest trilogy. Good stuff.

    • I have a few books started too with characters sitting in limbo at the moment – I have you to thank for Kill Your Friends last year! I gather he’s written another good one, with equally unlikeable characters.

      • jprobichaud permalink

        Yes. In fact, the unloveable narrator makes an appearance in another book by the same author, “The second coming”, a hilarious book about the return of Jesus.

  6. I am a sucker for lists and challenges, sometimes this is the best way to read a book or two, not sure about fifty.

    • Luckily I get to pick the books to read – unlike the 1001 albums where they’ve been pre-selected for me!

  7. Do Take Away menus count? Oh. Then I’m most impressed with 29 books. Your favourite?

    Having just completed a re-read of Dune (some thirty years later it holds up remarkably well) I’m continuing with Bill Buford’s excellent autobiography. And for personal and professional development, I’m enjoying Irvin Yalom’s most recent publication, Creatures of a Day.


    • A colleague was telling me about Dune recently – the others sound promising too, I like that idea of both personal & professional development.
      Thanks Bruce!

    • Oh and it benefits from its recency, but Station 11 was a real standout!

  8. Got a top 3 (or so) recommendations from those 29?

    • Good question Andy – I’d say Station Eleven, And the Birds Rained Down, and Sherlock Holmes!

  9. 29 is impressive, Geoff. I mentioned on Aaron’s post about the Lemmy book that I haven’t finished a book since I gave up on Waging Heavy Peace in 2014! Man, that book bored me to tears!

    Anyhoo, I plan to do better this year. Intend on making The Secret Life of Houdini the first book I finish in nearly two years!

    … unless children’s books count, of course! šŸ˜‰

  10. I’m reading Greg Renoffs book on surprise surprise Van Halen titled Uprising! It’s a great read as he doesn’t go past 1978! He interviewed over 250 people for the book including Michael Anthony so there’s so legitimacy there as well
    Watch for the review…haha…cheap plug…

  11. 29’s not bad at all. I’m currently reading a biography of the artist Grayson Perry called ‘Portrait of the artist as a young girl’ and then I’ve got a load of Christmas books to lunge through. My goal for this year is to re-read a load of 18th/19th century books I studied for my degree, pretty much back in the late 19th century!!

    • You inspired me to pick up Pride & Prejudice this week, it’s off to a good start. Really liked the line, ‘you want to tell me and I have no objection to hearing it’

      • Brilliant news, I love every word, every scrap of punctuation and every space between the words in that book! I re-read it on holiday last year, I always take an Austen with me and I always get new things out of them.

      • Let me know how you get on.

  12. Also curious: how does Brave New World hold up in 2015?

  13. I’ve signed up and created bookshelves! Thanks again for this post, Geoff.

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