2019 Popsugar Reading Challenge

I’ve wanted to try this challenge for at least 2 years now but I always forgot about it until the middle of the year. 2019 is the year that I start from January 1, so I am so pumped about it! I will be keeping track of the challenge on this post and will continue to update it as I complete more prompts. If you’re also doing the challenge let me know where you are!

The Challenge

Count: 18/40

[X] A book becoming a movie in 2019

[X] A book that makes you nostalgic

[X] A book written by a musician (fiction or nonfiction)

[X] A book you think should be turned into a movie

[] A book with at least one million ratings on Goodreads

[] A book with a plant in the title or on the cover

[] A reread of a favorite book

[] A book about a hobby

[X] A book you meant to read in 2018

[] A book with “pop,” “sugar,” or “challenge” in the title

[] A book with an item of clothing or accessory on the cover

[X] A book inspired by mythology, legend, or folklore

[] A book published posthumously

[] A book you see someone reading on TV or in a movie

[X] A retelling of a classic

[X] A book with a question in the title

[X] A book set on a college or university campus

[] A book about someone with a super power

[X] A book told from multiple character POVs

[X] A book set in space

[] A book by two female authors

[] A book with a title that contains “salty,” “sweet,” “bitter,” or “spicy”

[] A book set in Scandinavia

[] A book that takes place in a single day

[X] A debut novel

[] A book that’s published in 2019

[X] A book featuring an extinct or imaginary creature

[] A book recommended by a celebrity you admire

[] A book with ‘love” in the title

[X] A book featuring an amateur detective

[X] A book about a family

[] A book written by an author from Asia, Africa, or South America

[] A book with a zodiac sign or astrology term in the title

[] A book that includes a wedding

[] A book by an author whose first and last names start with the same letter

[] A ghost story

[] A book with a two-word title

[X] A novel based on a true story

[] A book revolving around a puzzle or game

[X] Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR Reading Challenge


[] A cli-fi (climate fiction) book

[] A “choose-your-own-adventure” book

[X] An “own voices” book

[] Read a book during the season it is set in

[] A LitRPG book

[X] A book with no chapters, unusual chapter headings, or unconventionally numbered chapters

[] Two books that share the same title (1)

[] Two books that share the same title (2)

[] A book that has inspired a common phrase or idiom (e.g., Big Brother from 1984)

[] A book set in an abbey, cloister, monastery, vicarage, or convent

January 2019

  1. when dimple met rishiA book you meant to read in 2018: When Dimple Met Rishi (5/5 stars)

I absolutely loved this book! Dimple and Rishi were such great characters and I really enjoyed the author’s writing style. I had seen this book in bookstores and libraries but had never checked it out, despite its longtime place on my tbr list. I’m going to work hard to shorten that list this year, and this was the first book I crossed off. You can read my full review here.


2rayne & delilah's midnite matinee. A book written by a musician (fiction): Rayne & Delilah’s Midnite Matinee (5/5 stars)

I got this arc through NetGalley and will be releasing my review when the book is published on February 26, 2019. This book is written by Jeff Zentner who, according to his Goodreads bio, started his writing career as a songwriter and guitarist. He has released five albums and has recorded with many well-known artists.


3.this is what it feels like A book told from multiple character POVs: This is What it Feels Like (4/5 stars)

This is What it Feels Like is told from three main points of view and one secondary point of view. The book follows three post-high school graduates as they try to win the Sun City contest for a chance to win $15,000 and a shot to work with their favorite band. But Dia, Jules, and Hanna have a long and complicated past together, and they need to figure out how to work together long enough to win the contest. You can read my full review here.

the golden tresses of the dead.jpg4. A book featuring an amateur detective: The Golden Tresses of the Dead (5/5 stars)

This is the 10th book in the Flavia deLuce series by Alan Bradley. The series follows Flavia deLuce, a spunky 11 year old who has a penchant for chemistry and mystery. Flavia is one of the funniest, wittiest book characters I’ve read, and the mysteries Alan Bradley concocts are fantastic. You can read my review of this book on my Goodreads page. If you haven’t started this series yet I would highly recommend doing so!

library of fatesAdvanced 1: An ownvoices book: The Library of Fates (5/5 stars)

Aditi Khorana writes about Indian folklore in The Library of Fates. This book follows Amrita as she embarks on a journey to get her kingdom and her family back from a ruthless emperor. The author dedicated this book to those whose voices aren’t being heard, and her acknowledgements section mentions the importance of the ownvoices movement. You can read my full review here.

two can keep a secret5. A book you think should be turned into a movie: Two Can Keep a Secret (4/5 stars)

As I mentioned in my original blog post, I prefer McManus’s debut novel over Two Can Keep a Secret. However, I think this would make a great movie. You have the creepiness of the horror park, the woods, disappearances, and overall thrilling mystery. I think the style would be better executed on a more visual platform like a movie or TV show (I’m almost getting Riverdale vibes).

strange graceAdvanced 2: A book with no chapters, unusual chapter headings, or unconventionally numbered chapters: Strange Grace (4/5 stars)

Strange Grace is overall a very unconventional book. It has impressive LGBTQ+ representation (especially for YA), tells the twisted tale of a devil in the forest, and is written in parts rather than chapters. Within each part there are breaks to switch POV between the three main characters, but even those just pick up right here the last POV left off. I think this really added to the book by keeping us on our toes with the supernatural mystery surrounding Three Graces.

starfish6. A book about a family: Starfish (4/5 stars)

I guess this book is more about a girl trying to discover her own voice within her family and society as a whole. However, Starfish touches on a lot of serious issues that can occur within families, such as sexual and emotional abuse, mental health issues, and divorce, to name a few. Even as the main character is doing her own thing in California, she is still drawn to her family and the role they have in her life. It isn’t the type of narrative you usually find in YA books, and I think it is important to change that.

warrior of the wild7. A book featuring an extinct or imaginary creature: Warrior of the Wild (5/5 stars)

This is another book that I received from NetGalley, so my review will be coming later in February when the book is published. Warrior of the Wild contains many imaginary creatures like the ziken, the gunda, valder, and many more. The world the author has created in this book is rooted in old civilizations but has fantastical elements like imaginary monsters that make the plot exciting and more imaginative.


five feet apart8.  A book becoming a movie in 2019: Five Feet Apart (5/5 stars)

I’m really looking forward to this movie. I’ve read that the screenplay and the book were developed closely together, so I’m excited to see the differences between the movie and the book. Based on the trailer, Cole Sprouse and Haley Lu Richardson look like the perfect cast for our two main characters. I’m glad we don’t have to wait too long after the book’s publication to see the movie.

9. A book that makes you nostalgic: Coraline (4/5 stars)coraline

This month was the first time I read the book, but the movie came out 10 years ago earlier this month! I can’t believe it’s been that long. I remember seeing the movie with my neighbor’s family when it came out and being simultaneously freaked out and in love with the story. I recently re-watched the movie on a plane ride around Thanksgiving and still loved it. Reading the book definitely brought back a lot of memories.


what if it's us10. A book with a question in the title: What If It’s Us (4/5 stars)

There’s not much explaining that’s necessary here! What If It’s Us tells the story of Ben and Arthur as they navigate their meet-cute love story in New York City. Are they destined to be together or does fate have other plans? The authors did a great job co-writing such different characters and putting them in funny and awkward (usually at the same time) situations.

me before you11. Your favorite prompt from a past POPSUGAR reading challenge- A book about mental health: Me Before You (3/5 stars) **Mild spoilers ahead!**

I originally had this book at 4/5 stars, but after more thinking I’ve decided to change it to 3 stars. I didn’t love Lou as a main character and felt that the romantic aspects to the book were lacking. However, I did find Will to be an interesting character. I have read other reviews where his giving up is seen as a very negative thing, but I think the auhter went about this in a unique way. On a person-to-person level I can understand why Will had depression and felt unfulfilled. I can’t say anything from the POV of someone with a disability, but I would hate to go from such an action-packed life to such a pain-filled life. Although the representation might not be the best, I think the context of mental health in this book is unique.

meet me in outer space12. A book set on a college or university campus: Meet Me In Outer Space (3/5 stars)

Meet Me In Outer Space follows Edie, an aspiring fashion designer waiting out the semester until she can go to Paris to study and work with established designers. Unfortunately, she is failing French class and needs to pass before she can leave. Struggling through the class is hard enough in itself; add a cute boy and central auditory processing disorder on top of that and you have an interesting semester ahead of you. Overall I felt like this book had a lot of potential but it just fell short for me. However, one thing I really liked about it was the college setting, even if it wasn’t that present of a setting.

13. A book set in space: The Martian (5/5 stars)martian

I loved this book and am ashamed it took me so long to read it! My friend and fellow-librarian did a buddy read with me for this book and we both couldn’t stop talking about it. I’ve now read the book and seen the movie and love both. This is also my first hard sci-fi and I’m on the hunt for more. The whole concept of being stranded on Mars is terrifying and fascinating- I loved it. You can read my full review here.


stay sweet14. A book with a title that contains “salty,” “sweet,” “bitter,” or “spicy”: Stay Sweet (2/5 stars)

I know people really like Siobhan Vivian’s contemporaries but I really didn’t like this book. Like, at all. I just found it so juvenille, surface-level, and annoying. I’m usually down for a light summer read but this was way too long of a book to be nothing but light content. This may be on this list because it has “sweet” in the title but I’m feeling bitter about wasting my time on this book.

wicked saintsAdvanced 3: A book set in a monastery: Wicked Saints (5/5 stars)

This book isn’t set to be published until April, but I’m going to count it now. You can check out my full review here! The book opens in a monastery with one of our main characters, a girl who grew up there. The majority of the book takes place outside the monastery but the symbol of the monastery plays a vital role throughout the book for the plot and the characters. So although I might be cheating a bit since the book doesn’t solely take place there, I think it should count because of the figurative role it plays in the book.


theodosia15. A book inspired by mythology, legend, or folklore: Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos (4/5 stars)

I read this book years ago in elementary school and decided to give it a reread as an adult. Theodosia helped cultivate my love for mythology, fantasy, and mystery, so it will always hold a special place in my heart. This is the first book in a four-part series about Egyptian mythology and a young girl fighting to keep the evil forces at bay.


16. A novel based on a true story: Romanov (3/5 stars)romanov

Romanov is based off, you guessed it, the Romanov family! This is a fantasy retelling of the fall of the Romanov family and tsarist Russia. My full review will be coming closer to the publication date, but the one thing I loved about this book was the historical retelling element. The author put in a lot of effort while researching for this book and included real people, places, dates, and events during the time period.


again, but better17. A debut novel: Again, But Better (4/5 stars)

Again, But Better is the debut novel of popular booktuber Christine Ricci. I haven’t personally seen her videos (something I hope to remedy soon!) but have heard that she and the protagonist have many similarities. Again, But Better was a fun and original read and I’m excited to read Ricci’s future works! My full review will be up in May, so stay tuned for that.


18with a title that contains “salty,” “sweet,” “bitter,” or “spicy”: Stay Swee. A retelling of a classic: Sky Without Stars (2/5 stars)sky without stars

Sky Without Stars is pitched as a retelling of Les Miserables, a book I haven’t read (never will, tbh) but a musical I have seen many times. I will say that it is an imaginative retelling of the classic and I enjoyed that aspect of it but, unfortunately, my love for sci-fi and the Les Mis musical weren’t enough to get me to like this book. I think the series as a whole has promise but I was disappointed by this first book. Full review to come closer to the release date!



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