Reading Goals for 2018: Bringing Back Reading Bingo…and more

Happy New Year! Time to start those lists and ideas for your bookshelves! Last year I didn’t set a number goal and read over 100 books! Since that non-goal worked well for me I’m going to avoid shooting for quantity again (if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it). On the flip side, setting a goal to re-read a few books flopped royally (I think I managed one re-read?). So I’m shoving that under the rug, putting those books in the back of my mind for maybe later this year…maybe…and moving on. 

What I did enjoy was playing a bit of Reading Bingo. So I’m brushing off last year’s Bingo card, picking a different theme, and making that my first goal. If you weren’t here for last year’s effort, I created a Bingo card of various qualifications for books to read and then I picked a theme to focus on the playing/reading board. Last year I completed two themes. One theme focused on Race Relations and the other theme was Expressions of Faith. This year I’m going to focus on a geographic region: the Caribbean.

Goal #1: Read a five-in-a-row-BINGO! of books from the Caribbean. 

Here’s the card if you want to play along:

reading book bingo

Goal #2: Read five books of  history, including at least 3 biographies.

I’m rusty on history in general so I’m going to focus on the U.S. end of the spectrum to start, but I suspect I’ll branch around the world once this latent interest kicks into full gear. I’m open to this goal being one of surprises!

This past year I started noticing a few people of historical significance that I wanted to know a bit more about for one reason or another. 2018 will hopefully at least get me back in the game. I have my eye on the Grant biography by Chernow, and I’m looking for a good biography of Theodore Roosevelt and one for Eleanor Roosevelt. Recommendations appreciated!

Goal #3: An A-Z read from my TBR pile

I found this idea in a post over at Fictionophile. In an effort to make a concentrated dent in my TBR pile this year, I’m going to read books with titles that progress alphabetically. I’ve modified this goal for my purposes so that some of these I own, some are mentions in an outdated and ignored Goodreads shelf and will be library borrows, some I’m not even sure the library will have so I may be checking out my options on Amazon. In any case, at least 26 books from my TBR pile this year. I’ll post as I go through. I’ve got my A, B, and C in line so look for that post coming soon!

Goal #4: Reading and Writing

My writing time is likely to be whittled down considerably in 2018 so I’m going to use my reading space to do some research. The piece of fiction I’m working on has several areas where I’m lacking in detail and context so I’m on the prowl for good books to provide that understanding. This is my least specific goal but probably my most important one. Here are a few of the areas I’d like to explore more in-depth: military culture, Vietnam War, early onset Alzheimers, and single mothers in the 1970s-1980s. I’m going for fiction and non-fiction. Most of these are areas I need to understand in order to supplement back story and support my secondary characters, but I have a hunch when I get some of these pieces in order the protagonist is going to come to life more clearly. Fingers crossed!

***

What are your reading goals?

Any good recommendations for biographies to read? Books in the Caribbean? How about military culture or early onset Alzheimers? 

Good luck to you!

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16 thoughts on “Reading Goals for 2018: Bringing Back Reading Bingo…and more

  1. Your reading goals are always more lofty than mine. I just want to be entertained. 😄 That being said, I would like to finally clear some of the books off both my physical and virtual shelves. I have far too many purchased books I still need to get to!

  2. I read a book called Theodore Rex ages ago – it wasn’t especially memorable but I noted it as “interesting and informative”. Reading this, I wish you lived near me as one of the local libraries had a bunch of Alzheimer’s books on their “books to buy” shelves! If I go back, I’ll try to look for the titles of some.

    I’ve read and reviewed four diverse books set in the Carribbean so far, plus others with immigrants from the Caribbean but no action set there. The Jumblies was my favorite of the fiction, and This Kid Can Fly was my favorite non-fiction. Both are middle grade reads.

    What aspects of the Vietnam War are you looking to read more about?

    1. Fantastic! These are great recommendations! Soldier life and general context is where I’m focused. The piece I’m working on has a connection to the VW but it’s not a significant part of the work. I still feel like I need a better grasp even to write the backstory with some integrity. 😬

      1. Hmm. I’d suggest The Things They Carried for soldier life and Where the Domino Fell for general context. First one is fiction and second is nonfiction – it does get heavy at times but should have most of the info you need. Husband’s read a lot more about Vietnam from the military side so I can ask him if you’re looking for others. I tend to read more from the Vietnamese side and then we have very interesting conversations.

      2. Oh that sounds like a great combination of reading interests for dynamic conversations! I’ll start with these by putting these two on my list. I think my personal interests would sway more towards understanding the Vietnamese side, but my book research needs the U.S American soldier perspective. 🤷‍♀️ #readtolearn one way or the other I guess. Thank you so much for following up with these two recommendations!

  3. My big reading goal is to read all of the books I own – which is probably close to 100 (I’m doing a “solid” count at the end of this month, although it will change throughout the year as I acquire new books). It’s a terrifying goal for me but hey, I’m filled with the optimism of the new year. 🙂 For book recs I second The Things They Carried – I read it in high school and actually “enjoyed” it, to my surprise. For Alzheimer’s, have you read Alzheimer’s in America: The Shriver Report on Women and Alzheimer’s? I read it (and wrote a blog post about it) last year and although the stats are a bit outdated now, and cover more than just early onset, the information is still quite valuable and written to be understood by non-researchers. There are true stories intermingled with the research results too, all of which I sobbed through, so there’s a great balance of information and personal experiences.

    1. Wow – what a great goal! It would be awesome to have shelves full of books I could recommend to others because I’ve actually read them. Good luck! And now I’m curious just how many I have physically sitting on my shelves that I haven’t read. I can’t even look at my neglected Goodreads account because I know that would at least double the numbers!!

      Looks like The Things They Carried is going to be a starting point for me! I have not heard of Alzheimer’s in America but it sound EXACTLY like what I’m looking for. I will be finding it and reading it this year – THANK YOU!

      Looking forward to hearing how your reading year progresses! Hope you find some new favorites!

      1. Thank you! My overall goal is to clear off some of my shelf space – any book that doesn’t grab ahold of me (mentally, emotionally) I’m going to donate/give away (this goes for books I’ve read and not read). I’m looking forward to remembering why I loved some of the books I’ve placed on my shelves, as well as asking myself “why did I decide to add this book to my library?!” which I already know I’m going to do in some cases. 😉

        And you’re so welcome, I hope they turn out to be books you’ll recommend in the future, too. 🙂

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