Friday, January 2, 2015

7 Continents, 7 Billion People, 7 Books - Reading Challenge 2015


The idea of this reading challenge is to explore the world by books from different continents and countries, and by visiting various world lists while planning the reads, to encounter the one or other unknown angle and fact about our world.

7 Continents Reading Challenge 2015
To join the challenge, select and read seven books, each belonging to one of the following categories - or, if this works better for you, simply pick one book from each continent:

A book from....
- the 7 countries with the most population
- the 7 highest countries in the world
- the 7 oldest countries of the world
- one of the 7 megacities of the world
- the 7 countries with the most immigrants
- a continent not visited yet
- and a book with a journey from one continent to another

There's more information about the categories included below, with links to country lists.

Why 7 Books? 
To keep it simple and playful, and leave space for extra reads that might be inspired by the lists. Also, with 7 continents, and the world population reaching 7 billions, the 7 seems to be the best number for this kind of challenge.

Challenge Guidelines: 
  • This challenge will run from Jan 1, 2015 – Dec 31, 2015
  • Books can be any format (novel, non-fiction, poetry or story collection, anthology, as well as any phyisal format: print, ebook, audio)
  • The idea of the challenge is to read books from different cultures and continents - so if ithis works better for you, you can alternatively simply pick one book from each continent
  • You are welcome to count these books towards any other challenges as well
  • You can start wherever you want. 
  • When picking a country, the idea is to also pick an author from that country. If that turns out to be difficult, try to find an expat author who lived in the country for a while.

Resources, lists, links: 
Here is more about the 7 country categories, with links to the global lists, and with the top 7 countries listed already. The lists mostly are wiki-lists, as those often offer addditional search options.

1) The starting point: 
A book from one of the 7 countries with the most population
2) From most populated to the mountains:
A book from one of the 7 highest countries in the world
3) From high to old:
A book from one of the 7 oldest countries of the world
  • It's an own challenge to create a definite ranking of the oldest countries of the world, some references: About/Geography and here: Wiki-answers.
  • Some of the oldest countries: Japan, China, San Marino, Egypt + Iraq, Iran, Greece
4) From old to new:
 A book from one of the megacities of the world 
5) From megacity to migration:
 A book from one of the 7 countries with the most immigrants 
6) From migration to continents
 A book from a continent you havn't visited yet in this challenge  
  • The 7 continents: Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, South America, Australia/Ozeania, North Pole 
  • The listing is sorted by population, more about the 7 continents: Wiki/Continent
7) From continents to journey
  • A book that includes a journey from one continent to another.  


How to find books by country
How to find books set in particular countries? And preferably books that are written by an author who is coming from the country, or who has lived in it for a while? Here are also some lists that focus on the country: 
Searching for a place in an e-reader
If you have an e-reader, it might be interesting to run a search there: e-book readers can look for a word in all e-books they have in their files, and create a neat sorted list with bookmarks.

To join the reading challenge 

To join the challenge, just leave a comment with the link to your blog.
There also is a 7 continents / 7 books facebook group, to post review links, or just the cover or title of a book you enjoyed, or other related news and links - it's open to everyone who is interested in global reads. 

Looking forward to this different kind of journey around the world! And don't worry that some already started – it's never to late to start!


Dorothee said...

I'm joining of course :)
Here's the link to my reading notes: books, notes, places
For the challenge, I will probably start in China.

Susan said...

I'm in!

Rouchswalwe said...

Count me in, too ...

Anonymous said...

Love this idea, Dorothee. I'm planning to work on my book whenever I have free time this January, and if obligations don't allow that, I'll try again in February. The very next thing on my list will be this challenge. I might just go for one from each continent. It would be a great opportunity to finally read some books that have been far too long on my TBR list; some of those are even awaiting me in my TBR pile. Looking forward to seeing what books you will read.

Dorothee said...

Chris, Roucheswalwe, Susan - great that you love the idea and are joining. And yes, simply picking one book from each continent works just as well, too, especially if you already have fitting books in the TBR-shelf. I now added that alternative approach in the guidelines above.

Jen at Introverted Reader said...

This sounds like fun! Here's my sign-up post. Thanks for hosting!

Susan said...

My first review is for "a continent not yet visited for this challenge" - South America. Thursday Night Widows by Claudia Piñeiro. I found the book by searching the Location index on Stop You're Killing Me website.
My review:

Susan said...

My second review is for "one of the 7 countries with the most immigrants" - UK.
Dark Entry by M. J. Trow

Dorothee said...

Jen, great that you are joining. And Susan: thanks for adding your reviews. There are also several reading notes, links and reviews up in the facebook group already, for example "The Cellist of Sarajevo" and "Sightseeing" (short story collection from Thailand). Here's the group link:
7 Continents Facebook group link

DoingDewey said...

I'll also be joining in! Here's my challenge sign-up/progress post:

Unknown said...

Sounds like a lot of fun. Count me in!

Unknown said...

Here is my first review, of Cry the Beloved Country, which I read before joining so it doesn't reference the challenge. I have never been to Africa so it qualifies for the 6th--from a continent I have not visited.

Susan said...

My third review is for "one of the 7 countries with the most population" - US.
Death on a Vineyard Beach (Martha's Vineyard Mystery #7) by Philip R. Craig.

Susan said...

My fourth review "includes a journey between two continents" - Europe and Africa.
A Burial at Sea (Charles Lenox mystery #5) by Charles Finch.

Susan said...

My fifth review is "from one of the 7 highest countries": India.
East of the Sun by Julia Gregson.

Brigita said...

I'm joining the challenge and starting with France. :-)

Susan said...

My sixth review is "from one of the 7 oldest countries": Greece
Assassins of Athens by Jeffrey Siger

Amanda said...

Late joiner:

BookishRealm said...

I'm joining in! I just started a book blog and this will be my first challenge! Here's a link to my blog:

Susan said...

My seventh (final) review is for "one of the mega-cities of the world" - Istanbul.
Istanbul Passage by Joseph Kanon
My review:

Tiera said...

I'm In. :)

Jen at Introverted Reader said...

Here's my completed list. Thanks for hosting!