666 Reading Challenge: Translated, Classic, and Nonfiction Books I Want to Read This Year

Yet another day of me being a nerd!

I’ve been planning this project/post for a few months now, and I’m very glad to finally be sharing it!!! I know this whole book blog is a sign of me being a nerd, but I think this is nerd taken to another level because I am so so excited for this. Like, kind of scary amount of excited.

Basically, in continuing to branch out in my reading, I decided to create a fun challenge for myself to read at least 6 books from 3 specific genres this year. Those 3 genres are ones I consider myself very new to and want to explore more, which this challenge will hopefully get me to succeed at!

In this post, I’ll be talking about the details of the challenge and listing some books I’m interested in reading for it. For each genre, I’m featuring 3 books that I am 99% sure I will pick up this year. I’ve become such a giant mood reader that there’s no way I can stick to a TBR for the entire year, so this is less of a strict TBR and more of “here are some options” list. (And please feel free to recommend me some more books—this is not at all an exhaustive list!!)

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THE CHALLENGE

There are lots of genres I want to read more from, but I wanted to use this challenge to give myself an extra push to read the ones that I feel the newest to. So, the 3 genres I chose for this challenge are translated literature, classics, and nonfiction!

I’d love to read more than just 6 books and I think I definitely can (it’s just 3 books every 2 months!), so 6 is truly a minimum. And the reason I decided on 6 as the number was because I thought it was a goal I could realistically reach while still continuing to read from other genres I love/want to explore! It’s not at all because of… 666… haha…

I’ll see how I’m doing halfway through the year with my usual mid-year check-in post, and I’ll do a wrap-up at the end of the year with my overall thoughts on the challenge and specific books I want to highlight. And I’ll see if I did well enough to try the challenge again in 2023! (By the way, if I fail, this challenge never existed. This post was your imagination.)

If you’d like join me in doing your own 666 challenge with different genres (or a different number goal, but why would you give up the 666), please don’t hesitate! The more the merrier! But this is something that I created for myself first and foremost, so don’t think that I expect or want anyone to do the challenge too. I would be very surprised if anyone wanted to do it too (but very honored), since this was very much me being a self-indulgent NERD!

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TRANSLATED LITERATURE

Heaven Official's Blessing: Tian Guan Ci Fu (Novel) Vol. 1  Cursed Bunny  The Blind Earthworm in the Labyrinth

  • Heaven Official’s Blessing (Chinese): I’ve been meaning to read Mo Xiang Tong Xiu’s works since 2018, and this is the year I finally do it!!! I’ve been intimidated by their length (literally thousands of pages.. I will die), but since MXTX’s books were officially translated to English with multiple volumes, I think I can finally push myself to read them.
  • Cursed Bunny (Korean): One of my irl friends whose taste I trust wholeheartedly recommended me this, and it looks phenomenal. It blends sci-fi and horror in an exploration of patriarchy and capitalism—and it’s a short story collection, which I’m always wanting to read more of!
  • The Blind Earthworm in the Labyrinth (Thai): This is one of the few translated Thai books that I’ve found (and actually interests me), and I’m super excited for it. It’s apparently a combination of “a Thai soap opera” and “a fever dream”, which very much appeals to me, especially as someone who grew up watching Thai soap operas! I was way too young to be watching them.

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MORE BOOKS

Human Acts  Where the Wild Ladies Are  The Sad Part Was  La Bastarda: A Novel
Beauty Is a Wound  Things We Lost in the Fire  Minor Detail  Breasts and Eggs

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CLASSICS

Some books here could also count for translated, but I won’t be doubling up because that wouldn’t be challenging myself! So I just placed those books in this category based on nothing but Vibes.

(Also, just a quick mention—I never used to be interested in classics, but discovering The Artisan Geek’s channel a few years ago really inspired me and gave me lots of diverse classics to look into!)

Giovanni's Room  Maurice  Notes of a Crocodile

  • Giovanni’s Room: I’m actually in the middle of this one right now, and I’m enjoying it! I’m making my way through it very slowly, but its anguished exploration of sexuality (and manhood) is already hitting me hard.
  • Maurice: Ever since one of my friends jumped into my DMs right after finishing this book and yelling at me to read it, it’s been a high priority on my classics list. So I’m really hoping I can finally get around to it this year! Reading all the gay classics here!
  • Notes of a Crocodile (Chinese – Taiwan): This book is essentially about a group of gaysians having their coming of age in college, written by an important lesbian writer in Taiwan’s history, and I couldn’t be more excited to read it.

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MORE BOOKS

Rebecca  One Hundred Years of Solitude  The Woman Who Had Two Navels and Tales of the Tropical Gothic  Stone Butch Blues
The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas  The Bluest Eye  The Color Purple  The Song of Kieu: A New Lament

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NONFICTION

While I have some memoirs listed, I’m only allowing myself to count 1 memoir toward the total 6, because I want to read more non-memoir nonfiction! (I’ve discovered I really like memoirs, so I’ll probably read them outside of the challenge anyway.) I would prefer to read all 6 as non-memoirs, but sometimes school fries my brain and I can’t properly digest nonfiction in the way I want to… So I’m allowing myself some wiggle room!

The Making of Asian America: A History  A Mind Spread Out on the Ground  Calamities

  • The Making of Asian America: I’m hoping to read this during Asian Heritage Month in May (after I finish school, because while I love history… I cannot do 500 pages of it while taking exams). It seems pretty detailed, and I especially like that it covers some events outside of the US.
  • A Mind Spread Out on the Ground: Part essay, part memoir, this book tackles the trauma and oppression that Native Americans experience in North America, sharing some personal experiences of the author. I’m looking forward to learning more about it Indigenous peoples’ history in Canada, since I’ve usually only read about issues in the US.
  • Calamities: This is a book that a creative writing instructor personally recommended to me, and it looks interesting! To be honest, even after reading the description… I still have no idea what this is about. But I’m excited anyway! It’s a book of essays about writing and life and the body, and I can’t wait to see how I feel about it.

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MORE BOOKS

Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women That a Movement Forgot  Freedom Is a Constant Struggle  Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-first Century  White Tears/Brown Scars: How White Feminism Betrays Women of Color
Craft in the Real World: Rethinking Fiction Writing and Workshopping  A History of My Brief Body  All Boys Aren't Blue  We Have Always Been Here: A Queer Muslim Memoir


shall we chat

what are some genres you’d like to read more from? do you have any recommendations for me? have you read any of these books before?

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40 thoughts on “666 Reading Challenge: Translated, Classic, and Nonfiction Books I Want to Read This Year

  1. I love this challenge idea so much and wish I saw it earlier in the year! I am saving it for myself to do in 2023 I think hehe

    If you do wind up reading Rebecca let me know – that’s been on my TBR for like half of my life and I’d love to buddy read it with you

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This post was such a great reminder for me to keep in mind that I challenged myself to read 3 books from 3 genres that weren’t romance or graphic novels. So far I’ve been failing pretty hard, so maybe what I need to do is list some options that I might read and force myself to have some accountability!

    Like

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