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Dekko's Book Challenge of 2014


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#1 DekkoCards

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 03:20 AM

The challenge could have been started earlier, but it wasn't until I had purchased my Kindle that I planned on doing this. Basically, the challenge for myself is to read an average of 2.3 books a month throughout 2014, resulting in a 28 total for the year.
 
As of February 20th I have finished two books for the challenge, The Hunger Games and Catching Fire. I didn't really decide on going through with this until about 2 weeks ago, so some research and setup were put into place that caused me to take a bit longer to finish the first book for the challenge.
 
I've decided to track my progress while matching it with what my current day progression should be. I feel the hardest part is going to be the beginning Quarter, as I'm already over a month late in starting, but I'm confident that I can catch up to where I should be by somewhere in the middle of the second Quarter. For anybody interested, you can download a personal copy of my excel speadsheet here. I will update the sheet as I complete books from the challenge list, so download updated versions if you wish to keep track of my progress.

 

Below is a list of my current books I'm aiming to read and finish for the duration of the challenge. I reserve the right to change these should something come up in terms of content, such as a new book catching my eye or wanting to take a break between going to the next book in a overall series.

 

Excel Progress Spreadsheet [Updated 3/11/2014]

 
Quarter One Books [January 1st - March 31st]
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins Started 2/1 - Finished 2/16

Catching Fire by Suzaane Collins Started 2/17 - Finished 2/19

Mockingjay by Suzaane Collins Started 2/20 - Finished 2/23
Divergent by Veronica Roth Started 2/26 - Finished 3/11

Insurgent by Veronica Roth Started 3/12 - Finished 4/7

Allegiant by Veronica Roth Started 4/9 - Finished 4/18

The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger by Stephen King Started 4/21 - Finished 6/26
 

Quarter Two Books [April 1st - June 30th]

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin Started 6/28 - Finished 7/3

A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin Started 7/4 - Finished 7/10

The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro Started 7/11 - Finished 7/18

The Fall by Guillermo Del Toro Started 7/18 - Finished 7/21

The Night Eternal by Guillermo Del Toro Started 7/22 - Finished 7/29

1984 by George Orwell Started 7/30 - Finished 8/10

The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three by Stephen King Started 8/11 - Finished 8/18

 

Quarter Three Books [July 1st - September 30th]

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin Started 8/19 - Finished 8/31

A Feast of Crows by George R.R. Martin Started 9/1 - Finished 9/10

Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein Started 9/11 - Finished 9/16

Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton Started 9/17 - Finished 9/22

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams Started 9/23 - Finished 9/27

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick

The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands by Stephen King

 

Quarter Three Books [October 1st - December 31st]

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien

Timeline by Michael Crichton

The Dark Tower IV: Wizard and Glass by Stephen King


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#2 daedalus212

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 07:56 AM

if you haven't read them i would recommend ender's game and an astronaut's guide to life on earth both great books


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#3 DekkoCards

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 09:04 AM

if you haven't read them i would recommend ender's game and an astronaut's guide to life on earth both great books

 

Yea, the Ender's series is really good. I read through it prior to the movie coming out, but had read it long before that as well. Never heard of Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth though, but I'll check it out to see if it's something I'd be interested in. Thanks!


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#4 TheWinslow

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 01:38 PM

I would also recommend Hyperion, The Fall of Hyperion, Endymion, and The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons. Some of the best sci-fi out there.


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#5 DekkoCards

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 01:57 PM

I would also recommend Hyperion, The Fall of Hyperion, Endymion, and The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons. Some of the best sci-fi out there.

 

Read Hyperion before, but not the books that come after. I do have it on the list of books I'll read again though. The excel sheet has about 65 books listed that I picked from to make the 28 for this year. I'm planning on doing this for the foreseeable future, not just this year. So all the suggestions are appreciated and welcomed, as I'll be adding them to the ever-growing list if I think they seem interesting.


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#6 ThatAverageGuyMike

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 07:19 PM

Good luck Dekko! That is quite the list of books - the ones I've read off of there (LOTR trilogy, Hunger Games trilogy, Sherlock Holmes stories, Jurassic Park, etc.) are excellent. Definitely a good lineup.


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#7 RomanticsWes

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Posted 02 March 2014 - 05:53 PM

That's a great list. I've read most of the books on there. I love 1984 in a different way than most books I read and like. It's a powerful message and just keeps becoming more and more meaningful every day.

 

Oh and just to bust your balls, there's a typo in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. :D


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#8 LOOPYDOG

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 01:28 PM

Wow Dekko, Wish i could read that fast, I need lots of pictures ;) .   Awesome !!  keep it up.


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#9 DekkoCards

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Posted 12 March 2014 - 02:30 AM

I finished reading Divergent yesterday afternoon. The book itself was pretty decent, but for me it was a hard book to start. The entire book is from the point of view of a sixteen year old girl going through an initiation process after joining one of the factions in the story, Dauntless. It wasn't until about three quarters through that I actually got into the overall politics, war, and meanings behind everything. Overall it has grabbed my interest, and as such has made me rearrange some of my scheduled reading for the year. I'm still going to be aiming for the same amount of books, but instead of jumping into the Game of Thrones series, I'm going to finish this trilogy first.

 

Besides that change, I swapped out a few books from the original list and added a few from the Dark Tower series by Stephen King. Overall I wanted to try and give myself a break when going through a series. With that in mind I've spread out the "A Song of Ice and Fire" series throughout the year, same with books from the Dark Tower Series. Everything else remains the same for the most part, with the Sherlock Holmes books being removed from the main list for now. If I end up ahead of schedule or look like I'm going to be able to complete more than the alotted books per quarter I'll probably throw them in as each book is only about 150 pages.


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#10 DekkoCards

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Posted 27 September 2014 - 06:20 PM

So I figured I'd update the thread to show everyone my progress. The challenge so far has been difficult, as missing any significant period of time causes you to fall far behind on the completion date. From the end of April to the end of June I only managed to read one book. This way due to varying circumstances that caused me to go days, sometimes as long as two weeks without reading.

 

It has been a long road since that date, trying to catch up in terms of meeting my goal. The end of September will be the end of Q3 for me in terms of how I split the amount of books up. I'm currently 2 books behind the end of Q3 goal, which isn't bad considering I started a challenge a month late (February) but included January in the Q1 Portion and missed almost two months of reading in Q2.

 

As it stands I am off track for my 2014 Book Goal. I have until December 31st to complete 9 more books. If I can manage to keep on pace as I did in Q3 I should be able to hit that goal. I think next year I will probably decrease the amount of books in the challenge to either 5 or 6 per period to allow myself some wiggle room, but also so that when I read these books I don't feel like I'm trying to force myself through them to meet a goal like this. I'd like to enjoy the books I read and with my schedule 28 for the year was just a bit to high.


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