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2014 Hub Reading Challenge Check-in #13

2014 May 4
by Carli Spina
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Hub Reading Challenge logoNot signed up for YALSA’s 2014 Hub Reading Challenge? Read the official rules and sign up on the original post. Anything you’ve read since February 3 counts, so sign up now!

Happy Spring (and happy May the Fourth for Star Wars fans)! While it has technically been Spring for some time, it is only just starting to feel consistently warm and pleasant where I am, so it is finally the perfect weather to grab a book and read outside. Finish up your Hub Reading Challenge books in the great outdoors or curled up by your favorite window. Even if you haven’t started yet, sign up now! There is still plenty of time to read 25 books before the end of the competition!

Regardless of where you are in the Challenge, let us know how it is going for you. What’s the latest book you’ve finished? What is the best book you have read so far? Have you added anything new and exciting to your Hub Reading Challenge to-be-read list? Personally, my favorite book that I finished since my last check-in post was Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets by Evan Roskos. I can’t wait to see what else I will discover on the Challenge list.

The 2014 Hub Reading Challenge will run until 11:59PM EST on June 22nd, so even if you haven’t started reading yet, you still have plenty of time to read 25 books! Just be sure to keep track of what you are reading/listening to as you go along. We’ll be posting these check-in posts each Sunday so you can share your thoughts about the book(s) you read/listened to that week and share links to any reviews you post online. If you just can’t wait for our weekly posts, share your thoughts via social media using the #hubchallenge hashtag, or join the 2014 Hub Challenge group on Goodreads. We will be compiling posts from various places online into a Storify collection. You can see the social media conversation so far below!

If you have already completed the challenge by reading or listening to 25 titles from the list of eligible books, be sure to fill out the form below so we can send you your Challenge Finisher badge, get in touch to coordinate your reader’s response, and, perhaps best of all, notify you if you win our exciting grand prize drawing! Be sure to use an email you check frequently and do not fill out this form until you have completed the challenge by reading/listening to 25 titles. 

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21 Responses leave one →
  1. May 4, 2014

    This week I listened to:

    The Boy on the Wooden Box: I thought the story was quite powerful overall, but I thought it was odd that it won an “Amazing Audiobook” because I thought the narrator was really monotone.

    and read:

    The Adventures of Superhero Girl: I loved it and it made me laugh out loud, but I wish there was more to it. Wish it had been a larger compilation.

    So now my total is 11.

  2. May 4, 2014

    I hit 20 books this week adding Proxy and Ash to my completed list – not as impressed with Ash as I hoped I would be, though I did like the ending. I liked Proxy because I’m a sucker for dystopian fiction and this was an interesting addition to the genre. My colleague just finished listening to Zombie Baseball Beatdown so I think I may look to that one next.

  3. charlene.librarian permalink
    May 4, 2014

    I finally finished Boxers after having read Saints first quite a while ago, both by Gene Luen Yang. Apologies to Mr. Yang for butchering his name in a previous posting. I really liked both of these, but I wasn’t expecting the seriousness of the content. I’m curious how YAs respond, and especially Chinese/Chinese-American YAs. I think the sequential art is superb along with the coloration and really like the fact that the content is a significant historical subject.

    I first listened to Maggot Moon (audio book not on the hub challenge list) not knowing anything about it except for the cover with Standish and his mis-matched eye color, dramatized by the book cover illustration. Then, I read the book. Wow! This one is definitely in my top five within the challenge list. I was really amazed at the story’s arc and didn’t at all expect the ending, and I absolutely loved the drawings in the book. What a captivating way to add value to the book. I would like to read more by Sally Gardner.

    Happy reading next week to all…

  4. Meaghan permalink
    May 4, 2014

    I only just realized this past week that the printed list I’ve been using to track my reading (and choose titles) isn’t the updated version. Oops! I can now add #17: The Testing to the list — I read it at the end of February and didn’t realize it was included in the challenge.

    Unfortunately the downloaded version of Eleanor & Park that I was listening to expired before I could finish so I’m on the waiting list at my library again. I must say that I’m enjoying the audio book much more than the print version — the narrators are perfectly dramatic!

    Overall, I would still say that my favorite so far is The Nazi Hunters.

  5. Julie T permalink
    May 5, 2014

    No print reading this week on the list – still waiting on my last 3 books at local library. Did read 3 from Teen Read Week 2014 list; I listened to/finished listening to 3 of the audio books (spent a lot of time in the car this past week & weekend).

    Etiquette & Espionage – 4/5 – Ms. Quirk did a great job with the voices & I am surprised
    I liked the story. I am coming out of my comfort zone.

    Scowler – 2.5/5 – Not too into the story and the reader didn’t appeal to me, but his voice was
    the same tone as the story – drab/depressing

    Crap Kingdom – 1/5 – UGH! Author was poor reader w/ very boring voice. Story was just too
    something – did not like at all.

  6. Beth permalink
    May 5, 2014

    I hit 20 this week as well! I’m currently patting myself on the back.

    #19 – The Death of Bees – I’ve had this one sitting on my shelf for a while, so I was thrilled that it won an Alex Award. I have to say that the tone was unpleasantly gritty and off-putting, but I think that was the point. I started off slow, not knowing if I would ever get into it, and I ended up really getting sucked into the story and the pace. I’m glad I read it, but I feel like it might be one of those books that is hard to recommend even though it’s great and I liked it.

    #20 – Courage Has No Color – I had heard a little bit about the Triple Nickels so I didn’t feel like I was blown away by the content, but it was well-written and interesting. Seems like there could be some great Common Core connections, so I’m very glad I read it.

    Onward! Working on Boxers and Saints, Etiquette and Espionage (audio), and Help for the Haunted right now.

  7. Shannon Krug permalink
    May 5, 2014

    I am up to 19 total – finished Death of Bees. Did not think I would like it as it was very gritty (as Beth said) but I really did want to know what happened, I gained a protective love for the girls, I appreciated Lennie, I liked the pace / breakdown of chapter by each individual’s viewpoint. Hard to recommend because of language and content, but wouldn’t turn someone away as it was good writing. Nothing I would have ever read if not for this challenge, so again, thankful this is happening!

  8. Mindy Engler permalink
    May 5, 2014

    I haven’t posted in a few weeks … so here is my list:
    #42 Hold Me Closer Necromancer
    #43 Zombie Baseball Beatdown
    #44 Proxy
    #45 Boxers
    #46 Saints
    #47 The Testing
    #48 War Brothers
    #49 Etiquette & Espionage
    #50 How to Speak Dog

  9. May 5, 2014

    I finished! With How to Speak Dog, I completed my 25 Hub Challenge books!

  10. May 5, 2014

    Strobe Edge #1
    Strobe Edge #2

    (Finally a manga I actually enjoyed!)

    Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass

    That makes 20.

  11. Sara Ray permalink
    May 5, 2014

    I didn’t finish any this week but will probably finish a graphic novel at lunch today. Started listening to Better Nate than Ever — very cute!! Still stuck in IN the Shadows of Blackbirds. No time to just sit and read but maybe next weekend (then vacation coming SOON! to hit my 25!)

  12. May 5, 2014

    I keep forgetting to check in but I have been very busy reading. Over the past few weeks: GOLDEN BOY, SWIM THE FLY, RELISH, PROXY. I found GOLDEN BOY to be particularly fine, but I really liked them all.

  13. Robin Brandt permalink
    May 5, 2014

    This week I read Winger by Smith, Navigating Early by Vanderpool, and How to Speak Dog by Newman and Weitzman.

    Still waiting to be read: Sex and Violence, Golden Boy (the Sullivan one), and In the Shadow of Blackbirds.

  14. May 5, 2014

    I am so close I can taste it! Read Mother, Mother, what a roller coaster ride of emotion. But I really liked it. That puts me at 19. I am on the final stretch.

  15. Donna Siebold permalink
    May 5, 2014

    Just two this week: Better Nate than Ever, really cute – I enjoyed the author’s reading. The other book was Fighting Ruben Wolfe. I liked it though I had a bit of trouble with some of the slang.

  16. May 6, 2014

    I just finished “Kingdom of Little Wounds” and it was a doozy! Didn’t like it that much, and it was my book that allowed me to finish the challenge. I’m going to continue reading a few more, but for the most part, some of these were tough reads. I’m happy I completed the challenge, especially since this was the first time I have participated.

  17. May 6, 2014

    I’m up to 28 now, but think I’m definitely slowing down.

    I finished Far Far Away. I didn’t like this as much as I thought I would. It was very slow in the beginning and parts of the story line did not seem well integrated. I tried selling this to my teen book group for one of their summer choices. But they weren’t interested.

    I’m still working through Strobe Edge. I finished volume 5 and am waiting for my hold on volume 6 to come in. I am still surprised at how I’ve been drawn into this story.

    Finally read Rose Under Fire! I kept putting this off because of the subject. You know a book about a concentration camp is going to be dark and depressing. But once again Elizabeth Wein has managed to tackle a difficult subject without leaving the reader wallowing in sadness. There’s enough space from the horrors that they aren’t overwhelming. The time in the concentration camp is told as flashbacks, broken up by narrative of Rose’s time immediately after her escape. I’m glad I finally forced myself to read this book. It’s well worth it!

    Finishing Rose Under Fire means I have met my mini-goal of reading at least one title from every category! With well over a month to go in the Challenge, it’s time for a new goal. Now I want to see how many lists I can complete. For this mini-goal, and only this mini-goal, I will count books I’ve read outside the Challenge since I have too much on my plate to even think about re-reading anything. Oh, and I want to go back and read more from the Alex Award list. I’ve really neglected that one this year.

  18. Martha Boksenbaum permalink
    May 6, 2014

    I’ve gotten very distracted by other books, but I am at 17 without Morris or Nonfiction titles so I figure I’m close.

    I loved Out of the Easy, I thought the protagonist was great and I loved the mystery/adventure of it as well. I listened to If You Could be Mine as well, which was so very well done, and very well written.

    I’m trying to see what else I can squeeze in before June

  19. Anna Chappell permalink
    May 7, 2014

    Since my last check-in, I’ve read Help for the Haunted by John Searles and listened to the audio of Better Nate than Ever by Tim Federle. I really liked Help for the Haunted until the end, which completely changed my opinion. I very much dislike the trope the author used and feel the end was tacked on/came out of nowhere. Better Nate than Ever was much better – Nate has a great voice, and it was funny and poignant. So, 15 (25 if you count Morrs/Nonfiction) done! So I guess I’ve finished technically, but I’m going to try for another 10 books before the end. :)

  20. May 8, 2014

    I finished Help for Haunted and that brings my total to 10. I really liked it although I understand the objection some readers had about the ending. I still feel confident that I can finish 25 by the deadline.

  21. May 10, 2014

    11 down, 14 to go! Finished “Better Nate Than Ever” on audio. Laughed out loud so many times. Currently reading “The Universe Versus Alex Woods”. It’s very intriguing.

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