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Ariel over at Sycoraxpine has just announced a fall challenge, the Unread Authors Challenge. The rules are simple:

Read six books by authors you have never read before
. If you would like to read more in this time frame, go for it!
You are welcome to approach the Challenge in any of several different ways. You can choose one or two (or 3-5) unread authors and read several of their works, or you can choose six neglected (by you) writers and read a book apiece by them. Authors of fiction, non-fiction, genre fiction, graphic novels/comics, drama, and poetry are all welcome inclusions, although the individual works you choose should be book length. I will leave the definition of "book length" to your discretion, but in my mind a full length play or epic poem would certainly count, as would collections of shorter works.

I recently vowed not to sign up for another challenge unless it supported my efforts to work off my TBR pile. This one fits the bill, since I have several TBRs written by new-to-me authors.  And, none of these books overlaps another challenge.  Here's my list:

  1. The Yacoubian Building, by Alaa Al-Aswany (completed 9/19/2007 - review)
  2. Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader, by Ann Fadiman (completed 9/19/2007 - review)
  3. When the Emperor was Divine, by Julie Otsuka (completed 10/12/2007 - review)
  4. Wide Sargasso Sea, by Jean Rhys (completed 11/16/2007 - review)
  5. The Art of Mending, by Elizabeth Berg (completed 12/14/2007 - review)
  6. Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe (completed 1/17/2008 - review)
  7. The Secret River, by Kate Grenville (completed 2/3/2008 - review)


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 14th, 2007 02:03 pm (UTC)
I read "Things Fall Apart," and I think you'll like it. I haven't read Elizabeth Berg yet, but she's an author I've been interested in for some time. I'll be curious to see your reviews - as always.

=) Jill
Jul. 14th, 2007 08:43 pm (UTC)
Oh, you'll love Achebe! The Berg book you picked isn't my favorite of hers, but it is a quick read. I can't wait to see your reviews for The Secret River, Wide Sargasso Sea and The Yacoubian Building - all books I want to read, but haven't yet (you'll be my "test" as to whether they're worth my time *giggles*)

Jul. 16th, 2007 04:40 am (UTC)
Unread Authors Challenge
Amazing list, Laura! I absolutely loved "Ex Libris" (really, I LOVED it), and "The Secret River" is definitely on the list of books I wanted to cover when I designated 2007 as a year of reading more Australian literature. Now, even though we are only halfway through the year, I feel that I am running out of time! Ack!
At any rate, I just wanted to drop you a quick line (I tried to earlier today, but livejournal had some sort of an outage and ate my comment) to say how glad I am that you have joined the challenge. I look forward to hearing how you find these books.
Jul. 16th, 2007 04:42 am (UTC)
Re: Unread Authors Challenge
(I forgot to sign my comment this time. Oops!

-Sycoraxpine/Pour of Tor)
Jul. 16th, 2007 03:50 pm (UTC)
That is a wonderful list! Things Fall Apart is one of my top reads this year, I hope you enjoy it. Ex Libris is also a terrific little book of essays. If I join this challenge, I will probably also have Elizabeth Berg on my list (I have her book, Say When, on my TBR shelf).

Jul. 20th, 2007 11:54 am (UTC)
I loved Ex Libris and Wide Sargasso Sea is on my list as well. Great choices!

-Sarah (Loose Baggy Monster)
Jul. 22nd, 2007 07:08 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed Ex Libris so much I'm now on my third copy: I've given the previous two copies to people I thought should read it. I haven't read anything by the other authors, but I have considered doing so.
I, too, am considering joining this challenge if it will help me reduce my to-be-read stack
(If you like Ann Fadiman, I really recommend her work, The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down)

Aug. 6th, 2007 01:45 am (UTC)
I am planning on joining in on this one and am checking out others' lists. Elizabeth Berg is a good choice. Maybe I should consider her for my list. I have several of her books, but have yet to read anything by her, can you believe?
Aug. 6th, 2007 11:24 am (UTC)
That's how I felt, too -- have heard Elizabeth Berg mentioned so many times that I just had to pick up one of her books. Hope you enjoy the challenge!
Aug. 7th, 2007 06:18 am (UTC)
Hello! I just browsed over from the participant list. :)

When the Emperor was Divine was one of my favorite books from a literature course I took a few years ago. I'm a pretty big World War II lit geek, and it's high up there on the books that have really moved me. I hope you enjoy it!
Aug. 8th, 2007 12:55 am (UTC)
Thanks, this book was recommended to my by another blogger, great to have a "second opinion"!
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )