Challenge Update

One and a half months to go on my 2017 reading challenge, and I’m really getting down to the nitty gritty.

When I published my last post about the reading challenge, I had 11 categories still to fill. They were two titles, six first names, and three last names.

In the two months since then, I’ve managed to tick off another six of those categories, which means I have five still to fill.

Interestingly, the categories I’ve ticked off aren’t necessarily filled with the books I thought they might be.


I had two blank spots in title, K, and Z. I was intending to fill K with a Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, but actually ended up reading Kill Me Twice before that, so that’s K ticked off.

Z is still open, but Zenith is sitting at the top of my to-read pile, if I’ll ever get around to it…

First Names

I, Q, U, X, Y, Z

I was ticked off the list pretty quickly, with Nutshell, which I didn’t enjoy.

Q was a book bought specifically to tick it off, by Quenby Olson which I also didn’t enjoy.

U is still as yet unfilled, but it’s going to be A Wizard of Earthsea, which I’m going to reread before the end of the year.

X was Xavier Neal, another book bought specifically for the purpose of filling in a blank, and it was a terrible mistake.

Y remains not only blank, but also uninspired. I don’t think I can think of any authors whose first name begins with Y. What names even begin with Y? I need help here!

Z was unexpectedly crossed off. Although I had been intending to read Barefoot on the Wind, I actually ended up reading The Note last week, which happened to be written by a woman named Zoe. And I think I enjoyed it more for the fact that I didn’t read it specifically to fill a category!

Finally, there’s the surnames. This is the one that’s stumping me.


Q, U, X

I actually managed to tick off Q, with a book written by Susan Kaye Quinn. It was about mind control, and wasn’t great, but wasn’t terrible either. I don’t think I’ll be bothering to read the sequels.

However, the last two letters, U, and X, are also really troubling me. I’ve had a think about surnames which start with U – Underwood, Underhill, Urwin, Unwin? But I can’t think of any authors that have those surnames. I’m going to have to go to the library and comb the shelves to see if I can find something.

As for X, well, I decided to check on Amazon to see if there was someone with the surname Xavier, since it worked to find me a first name, but the only one I could find writes gay erotica, and that’s reallllllly not the kind of stuff I’m looking for.



One and a half months to go. Five more categories to fill. I have two books picked out and ready to go – Zenith and Ursula Le Guin for title and first name. But I am utterly perplexed by the other three, and am going to have to do some serious research.

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