January 12, 2018

2018 Reading Challenge and Goals

Happy New Year everyone! Hope it's going well for you all so far. I've been sick with a nasty cold most of this new year, but I'm looking forward to feeling better and getting some reading done!

This year, as in past years, I'm setting my reading goal to 50 books.

I'm also looking forward to taking part in Tim Challies 2018 reading challenge. There are 4 sections to the challenge, but I am only focusing on one, and that is to read 13 books from the props he has given. I'm picking my props from throughout the whole challenge instead of just the 'light reading' section. You can check  it out... HERE

Here are my props and picks for 2018:

1. A book by a female author -  'None Like Him' by Jen Wilkin

2. A biography - 'Jane Austen: A Life' by Claire Tomalin

3. A book by your favorite author - 'Miracles' by C.S. Lewis

4. A book more than 100 years old - 'Crime and Punishment' by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

5. A classic novel - 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' by Robert Louis Stevenson

6. A book about history - 'Mysteries of the Middle Ages' by Thomas Cahill 

7. A book you have read before - 'Pride and Prejudice' by Jane Austen

8. A book about Christian living - 'This is Our Time' by Trevin Wax

9. A novel longer than 300 pages - 'The Snow Child' by Eowyn Ivey

10. A memoir or autobiography - 'The Emancipation of Robert Sadler' by Marie Chapian and Robert Sadler

11. A book about theology - 'The God Who is There' by Francis A. Schaeffer

12.  A book of 100 pages or less - 'Mary' by Leonardo De Chirico

13. A book of your choice - 'Elizabeth and her German Garden' by Elizabeth von Arnim


I'd also like to get to some more classics. I really enjoyed reading the ones I got to last year.

Here is that list of classics read in 2017:

1. 'Treasure Island' by Robert Louis Stevenson - this was a little slow going and a bit boyish for my taste, but enjoyable over all.

2. 'The Vicar of Wakefield' by Oliver Goldsmith - I listened to this one while painting my daughters room and enjoyed the narrators exuberant voice.

3. 'Holiness' by J.C. Ryle - this was one of my favorites this year, you can read about it... HERE

4. 'The Secret Garden' by Frances Hodgson Burnett - this was my least favorite classic. I loved the first half of the book, but the second half had some elements that I found disturbing. ex. (children dancing around the fire in what seemed like nature worship). : (

5. 'Answers to Prayer' by George Muller - another wonderful Christian classic. Loved it.

6. 'Anne of Green Gables' by Lucy Maud Montgomery - these books are so wonderful and I can't wait to read the rest of the series this year.

7. 'Anne of Avonlea' by Lucy Maud Montgomery

8. 'Anne of the Island' by Lucy Maud Montgomery

9. 'The Great Gatsby' by F. Scott Fitzgerald - this one was so so. I did like the message that material things can't make you happy.

10. 'Villette' by Charlotte Bronte - 'Jane Eyre' by Charlotte Bronte is one of my all time favorite novels so I found this one a bit lacking in comparison, but enjoyed it non-the-less.

11. 'North and South' by Elizabeth Gaskell - this was an interesting read set in the industrial age. I liked it, but wish I hadn't watched the mini-series before-hand, which of course gave away the story!

12. 'David Copperfield' by Charles Dickens - Loved this one!

13. 'The Rector' by Margaret Oliphant - A short read, but enjoyable.

I've started Oswald Chambers 'My Utmost for His Highest' and hope to continue throughout the year. This is probably my favorite devotional, one that is thought-provoking, as well as convicting.

Here's a quote from the Jan. 1st devotional, 'Let Us Keep to the Point'...

"Shut out every other thought and keep yourself before God in this one thing only - my utmost for His highest. I am determined to be absolutely and entirely for Him and Him alone."

"Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."  1 Cor. 10:31

That's what I desire for 2018. Doing all to the glory of God. My utmost for His highest.

I want to step up my bible reading as well, as more and more I see how privileged we are to have God's Word at hand. A privilege that could be taken away at any time. Keep it close to your heart, drink it in, as Jeremiah said...

"Your words were found, and I ate them,
And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart;
For I am called by Your name,
O LORD God of hosts." Jer. 15:16

May His word bring you joy and His peace be with you this coming year!


  1. Cathy, thank you so much for inspiring me with your reading list. I just checked out Tim Challies' list and I'm considering which books I can include under the categories he mentioned. I think this will be a great way to keep me motivated in my reading this year.
    Blessings to you!

    1. Hope you have fun with the Tim Challies challenge! Thanks for stopping by Marva!

  2. I just saw a review of The Snow Child a few days ago and put it on my TBR list. I'm considering The Great Gatsby - I have never read Fitzgerald before. The Secret Garden is on my list for this year as well. I had seen a movie version of it and was disturbed by that element as well. I just read (or listened to) Jeckyll and Hyde last year - it was quite compelling not as a double personality or monster situation, but as someone trying to separate his sin nature from the rest of himself. I loved Jen Wilken's Women of the Word but haven't read anything else by her except a couple of articles. David Copperfield is a favorite.

    1. I'm enjoying The Snow Child, very beautiful writing style.

      I've heard that about Jekyll and Hyde! Piqued my interest! Looking forward to reading it. : )

  3. Thank you for sharing this reading challenge. This is a great way to stay motivated to read and to read variety.

  4. Sounds like a great reading list. I am an avid reader, but keeping up just with my Bible study books, devotions and reading through the Bible is all I can handle.

    1. That's awesome! I'm reading Oswald Chambers, 'My Utmost for His Highest' again this year, but I'd like to find a bible study. Glad you stopped by!

  5. I loved checking out your reading list! I think I need to add more classics to my list, too. I've read a lot, but there are so many great ones out there!

    1. I love the classics too! Though they can take me awhile to get through. When I need some help I use audio-books from the library and read along or listen while working around the house.

      Thanks for stopping by Lexie!

  6. I've read some of the books on your lists but not all by far. Thanks for sharing them. I'll have to check some of them out. I want to read more this year, too.
    Blessings to you! I'm your neighbor at #HeartEncouragement.

    1. Hope you enjoy whatever to get to this year in reading! Thanks for stopping by Gayl. : )

  7. I enjoyed reading your list. I am a huge L.M. Montgomery fan as well. Two books I would recommend if you get a chance to check them out are The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay and Caroline: Little House, Revisited by Sarah Miller. The Austen Escape is fun and light, and Caroline has writing that makes you feel like you're really there with the Ingalls family. Nice to see another blogger who loves historical fiction and the classics!

    Teresa from https://mamamuseme.wordpress.com

    1. I've enjoyed a couple of Katherine Reay's books, but haven't read this one yet. I just got it on sale for my kindle, so it's on my list! I've read 'Caroline' and thought the writing was beautiful, but had a few issues with some sexual scenes I thought were unnecessary and that I wasn't expecting. I would have given it a 5 out of 5 otherwise.

      Glad you stopped by Teresa! Always nice to meet other bloggers who love books!

  8. Happy reading, my friend. Thanks for linking up at #PorchStories!

  9. Nice list of books for 2018. Oswald Chambers is always thought-provoking and often convicting. Secret Garden is on my classics list for this year.

    1. Enjoy all your 2018 reads! Glad you stopped by. : )

  10. Such a great list of choices. I am lucky if I will read 10 this year. Right now my focus is to read through some of the free Kindle books I've been downloading. Just basically reading for pleasure. Blessings!

    1. Hope you enjoy your picks this year Barbie!

  11. I love reading other people's reading lists because they help inspire me to add new choices to my reading list for the year!

    1. I love to do that to! Thanks for stopping by Julie. : )

  12. Well, you will be busy this year! Thanks for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com!

    1. LOL, yes it's fun being busy with things you love to do. : ) Thanks for stopping by Tina!


Feel free to leave your own thoughts in the comments. I try to respond to all of them by the end of the week. : )

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