YALSA’s 2014 Hub Reading Challenge Begins!

Hub Reading Challenge logoIt’s now February 3rd, so we are kicking off YALSA’s 2014 Hub Reading Challenge! We hope this challenge will encourage you to read/listen to more great books than you might have otherwise — and to discover something new in a genre or category you might not have tried.

Challenge objective Read/listen to 25 of the titles on our list of eligible titles [pdf] to finish the challenge. The list includes YA novels, audiobooks, graphic novels, and books for adults, so there’s plenty to choose from. Bonus objective: read/listen to all eligible titles to conquer the challenge!

Challenge rewards Beyond experiencing the best of the best that YA lit has to offer, everyone who finishes the challenge will be invited to submit a response to a book they read for the challenge. The response can be text, graphics, audio, video and will be published on The Hub. Furthermore, everyone who finishes the challenge will be entered into a random drawing for our grand prize: a YALSA tote bag full of 2013 and 2014 YA lit! (If the winner is a teacher or librarian or something similar, we’ll also include a few professional development titles.)

Challenge conquerors will receive an elite digital badge to show off how well-read they are. (And don’t forget major bragging rights and the undying awe and respect of everyone, everywhere.)

Challenge guidelines

  • The challenge begins at 12:01AM EST on February 3 and ends at 11:59PM EST on June 22.
  • Eligible books are the YA titles that were named winners or honor titles for the Schneider Family Book Award and the Stonewall Book Award and those on YALSA’s 2014 Best of the Best list (2014 winners and honor books for the Alex Award, Award for Excellence in Nonfiction, Margaret A. Edwards Award, Michael L. Printz Award, Odyssey Award, and William C. Morris Award, as well as the 2014 Top Ten Amazing Audiobooks, Best Fiction, Great Graphic Novels, Popular Paperbacks, and Quick Picks.) Middle grade titles recognized by these lists and awards are not included in the list of eligible titles for this challenge.
  • Format matters: a title that has been recognized for both the print version and the audiobook version can be both read and listened to and count as two books, but a book that has won multiple awards or appears on multiple lists in the same format only counts as one title. If a book was recognized as a print version, listening to the audiobook does not count.
  • Books must be read/listened to (both begun and finished) within the challenge time period. If you’ve already read/listened to a title, you must re-read/listen to it for it to count. The only exception is for titles you read for the Morris/Nonfiction Reading Challenge; whether or not you finished that challenge, you may count that reading toward your 25 titles.
  • Just about everyone who doesn’t work for ALA is eligible to participate. Non-ALA/YALSA members are eligible. Teens are eligible. Non-US residents/citizens are eligible. (More eligibility questions? Leave a comment or email us.)
  • Once you finish the challenge, we’ll contact you with details about creating and publishing your response.
  • The grand prize winner will be selected by 11:59pm EST on June 25. The winner will be notified via email.

How to participate

  • Comment here announcing your intention to participate. If you’re going to be tracking what you read/listen to on your blog or on Goodreads, LibraryThing, YouTube or some other site, include a link to your blog/shelf/channel/profile in your comment. If you’re not tracking your reading online, keep a list some other way.
  • You may register for the challenge by leaving a comment here and starting your reading any time during the challenge period.
  • Make it a social experience! Share your challenge progress and get to know other participants by using the hashtag #hubchallenge on Twitter. If you’re on Goodreads, join the 2014 Hub Challenge group.
  • Every Sunday, we’ll publish a check-in post. Leave a comment with everything you’ve read/listened to since the last check-in post. If you’ve reviewed those titles somewhere online, include links to those reviews! Otherwise, let us know what you thought of the books in the comments.
  • If you’ve finished the challenge since the last check-in post, fill out the embedded form with your name and contact information. This is how you’ll receive your Finisher’s Badge, how you’ll be contacted about your reader’s response, and how you’ll be entered into the drawing for our grand prize. Please fill out the form only once.
  • If you’ve conquered the challenge, let us know in the comments and we’ll send you your Conqueror’s Badge.

Sound good? If you have any questions or problems, let us know in the comments or via email. Otherwise, grab this Participant’s Badge, put it on your blog or in your email signature, and start reading!


Published by

Allison Tran

Past Member Manager for YALSA's The Hub. Passionate about information literacy, social media, and connecting readers with books they'll love.

327 thoughts on “YALSA’s 2014 Hub Reading Challenge Begins!”

  1. Can’t wait! I have lots of books at home waiting to be read for this challenge! YAY! Happy reading everyone!

  2. I started at 12:01 last night – took a early nap so I could.

    Hope everyone has a great time & expands their comfort zone – know I will.

  3. I’m in! I’ll try to keep track on Goodreads again this year. Thanks for the printable list!!

  4. I’m in – started my first audio on the way in to work. Always tend to do at least half the list, so that’ll be my first goal.

  5. I’m in! I finished the Morris/Non-fiction challenge by the skin of my teeth so I am already well on my way to finishing at least 25. I hope to finish all of the titles, but I had a hard time locating some of them last year and my purchasing budget can only stretch so far. We shall see what happens. My fingers are crossed, I hope my eyes do not end up the same way! This year I am trying to read them in some order. Last year I just did a hit or miss scheme and I had a very hard time keeping things straight mentally.

  6. I’m totally in! This is my third year and it’s so fun to discover books that I wouldn’t normally choose. I’m be keeping track at goodreads (mugsypark).

  7. I am going to aim for 25 titles again this year. I’ve already read 13 titles from the list, so as last year, this will force me to stretch a little :)
    I’ve got a hub challenge 2014 shelf started on Goodreads http://bit.ly/1aWp9Vk and may possibly tweet @MHHSLibrary as well.

  8. I’m in! I’m going to be reviewing the titles at my book blog (Brittney Reads, brittneyreads.tumblr.com), and keeping track of it all on my hubchallenge shelf on Goodreads.

  9. I also plan to participate in this year’s challenge along with two of my co-workers. We’ll be keeping track of our books on Goodreads.

  10. I’m in! I’ll track my progress on my blog Writing Bout Reading and on my Goodreads account Angela’s Books. I have a shelf called “Hub 2014 Challenge.” There’s also a separate shelf for the 2014 Nonfiction and Morris Challenge.

    Withing the larger Challenge, I always try to read at least one from each category. I also avoid re-reading so that I am forced to read things I would not otherwise have read. Even thought having done the Winter Challenge gives me a head start on this one, I’m going to try to read 25 additional titles. I’ve already finished my first: The Adventures of Superhero Girl by Faith Erin Hicks.

    The Quick Picks list is now up and, doesn’t it figure, the one YA book I read last weekend is on that list. If I’d known, I would have waited until today to start Killer of Enemies. Oh well, there are plenty of other tempting titles.

  11. All in! Started on Charm & Strange this morning and finding it totally engaging…

  12. I’m in! I did the Morris/Nonfiction challenge and almost finished (Go is still not here yet), so I’ve got a good head start. I’ll be keeping up with my reading at Goodreads and (hopefully) on the library blog, fmplteens.wordpress.com.

  13. Sign me up! I am feeling optimistic, especially since the Morris challenge has put me 5 books ahead. I’m starting with All the Truth That’s In Me, and I’ll be documenting my progress on

  14. I’m in. I read one book this year for the Morris/Non-Fiction challenge, Sex and Violence. Looking forward to tackling the Alex awards. I’ll track on Goodreads and Tumblr.

  15. I am in – my first YALSA reading challenge, but I am hoping to make a big dent in my reading this year. We’ll see. I’ll be tracking on my blog – youngpeoplesbooks.blogspot.com and will add the badge. Thanks for the opportunity!

  16. I am going to give a try! I just printed the list and crossed off all the titles I have already read (15) and added an new shelf on my Goodreads account. Here goes!

  17. I did this last year and was introduced to a lot of books I would not have otherwise tried. I have Rose Under Fire sitting on the desk next to me waiting to be started!

  18. First year participating! Can’t wait! I’ll be trying to keep track of my list on Goodreads (Kelly Trowbridge)

  19. This will be my first attempt. The audiobooks might be a little difficult, but I’m going to do my best!

  20. I am in. I read 15 last year and did not get the challenge completed so my goal this year is to complete the challenge with at least 25.

  21. I enjoyed this so much last year and am looking forward to another year of great books and finds for my school library. This also gives me the opportunity to put more information on my blog.

  22. Couldn’t quite finish last year, better luck this year, right?
    So glad a pdf of titles is included this time :)
    I’ll be writing about what I read on Goodreads and also my blog, sarahsbookjournal.wordpress.com

  23. I’m completely on board. But as far as eligibility goes, does being on a YALSA task force mean I can’t participate? Just wondering.

  24. I’m in! Looking forward to reading and knowing about the book titles the high schoolers will be checking out!

  25. I’m in – first time learning about this challenge – hoping to conquer it and know what the high school students are interested in for their Media Center!

  26. I’m in! This will be my third year and I’ve been waiting for this year’s challenge to start! I’ll be keeping track on goodreads; will post the link once I have a shelf and something to put there!

  27. I’m in! I completed this challenge for the first time last year and I’m hoping to do it again this year.

  28. The 2 Stonewall winners aren’t showing up on the PDF list. (Well, Beautiful Music for Ugly Children is, but it isn’t identified as Stonewall, only Popular Paperbacks.) The honor books are on the list. Fat Angie should be added.

  29. This is my second year doing the challenge. Last year, I made it through about 75% of the titles. This year, I’m going to push myself to read EVERY title. I’ll start by rereading either Beauty Queens, The Book Thief, or I am the Messenger because I have those in my collection. I’ll be posting weekly on my blog .

    I’ve also joined the Goodreads group, but I don’t know how active I’ll be, especially since I’ll be reading like crazy. :)

  30. I really enjoyed this last year, so I’m in for another year. Last year I read 25, but didn’t submit my completion information on time…so middle school! This year I’ve already started with the Morris and Nonfiction lists, and am anticipating both reading books that I know I’ll like and others that I probably wouldn’t have picked without the challenge. I’ll be keeping track on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/13804296-sharon-amastae?shelf=2014-hub-challenge.

  31. I’m in! I did the Morris and non-fiction challenges and so I am looking forward to adding to the list.

  32. I want to double-check on this: the Stonewall and Schneider titles are eligible for this challenge, but the Coretta Scott King, Pura Belpre, and Batchelder titles are not. Correct?

    Any reason why?

    1. I second this comment: Pura Belpre author award winner, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass, is YA so I would argue it should be part of the challenge. The other awards went to middle grade/youth titles this year so I understand why those would not be eligible.

  33. Count me in! Now to decide where to start… How ’bout Charm & Strange by Kuehn? pg 1: “I don’t feel the presence of God here.” ohhh, good opening line…

  34. I’m in!

    “Freakboy” by Kirstin Cronn-Mills. A novel in verse, from the perspectives of Brendan, his girlfriend Vanessa, and transwoman Angel. Brendan, who’s on his school’s wrestling team (his school requires a set amount of athletic participation) sometimes wishes he were girl. His girlfriend and wrestling teammate Vanessa knows that something’s amiss in their relationship, and she has family members pressuring her to be more conventionally feminine. Angel recognizes Brendan as transgendered and faces an ethical dilemma after she discovers that Brendan. confused by his feelings, vandalizing the GLBT center where she’s a counselor–and that he’s the one anonymously paying for the needed repairs bit by bit. I didn’t care for novel in verse aspect, but found it an interesting story well told.

  35. I am joining, and this year I am starting earlier so that I can accomplish my goal of reading 25 books! I have already read 6 titles on the list, so I’m excited to see what else the list has to offer!
    I will be keeping track of what I read on my Goodreads page here:

    I have been wanting to start a blog for some time now, so maybe this is the perfect excuse…errrr opportunity! Good luck everyone! Happy Reading!

  36. I’m hoping I get further this year than I did last year! The website listed is the shelf I’ve created for the challenge within my Goodreads account. I can’t wait to read all of these great books! :)

  37. Hmmm, posted on Monday that I’m in. But it seems the post is still “awaiting moderation.” So either I write too much or, maybe, include too many links?

    Anyway, I’m in. I’ve joined the Goodreads group and will try to keep my blog up to date as well. Any reviews will also go out via Tumblr and Twitter (@booksnquilts).

  38. I’m in! I’m going to try and finish the challenge this year, though I’ll probably be starting a little later as I crank out my ePortfolio. Final semester! =) I’ll be keeping track of my progress on Goodreads, as well as checking in here.

  39. I’m participating. I don’t know where online I’ll track how much I’ve read, but when I decide, I’ll update. Will be putting the badge on my Facebook page.

  40. I’m ready to begin the challenge.I’ve begun reading Go a Kidd’s Guide to Graphic Design. I’m enjoying his style of presenting his points to the reader.

  41. I’m in! I’ll be keeping track on Morristown-Hamblen Library Teen Room on Facebook. So excited!

  42. Alyisha Foley Wants to Kick the YALSA Hub Reading Challenge’s Ass!
    (Which is to say, “I’m in”).

    I’m taking a temporary break from blogging for the month of February, but after that I’ll be reviewing on my site “The Pooka Picks”:

    This month, I can promise short commentary for each book over at my Goodreads account:

    I think this’ll be fun.
    Good luck, everyone!

  43. I’m totally on board for the challenge this year! Woohoo! :)
    & I’ll be tracking my reading on twitter @hari_vert.

  44. Hope I’m no too late to sign up! I started this week with Beauty Queens! Will be participating using Twitter and my blog. @JediLibrarian42 and minavilly.wordpress.com

  45. Shouldn’t Boxer and Saints be considered as two books? I know they are companion books, but it is a two-volume set that could be read separetely.

  46. Well, I always get to these challenges way after they start! But luckily I can count the one I read for Morris/Nonfiction. So as of right now I am reading The Nazi Hunters at home (I am going to use it for booktalks in May). I have read so far Sex and Violence, Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets, Belle Epoque, Midwinterblood, and In the Shadow of Blackbirds! 5 total. I am going to start Charm and Strange on my lunch break today!

  47. I have a question: I read a few of the Morris titles during the Morris/Non-Fiction reading challenge, but did not list them in any of the update posts. Can I still count those because they were read during the time frame?

  48. I just heard about the challenge. A little late, but I am going to try. I will track the books on my goodreads account.

  49. I am participating, although I likely won’t get to read most of the books until the final month, since I’m in a children’s lit class and I have a ton to read. Can’t wait to read some of these great books though!

  50. I’m a bit late to the party, I guess, but this looks like fun! This is my first reading challenge that I’ve participated in and I’m looking forward to it. I’ll post my progress on twitter!

  51. I am planning on trying it again this year, although I am getting a slightly late start!!

  52. I’m coming late to the party, but I’ll give it a try!
    This March and April, I’ve read both Boxers and Saints by Gene Luen Yang, Far Far Away by Tom McNeal, and Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. 21 more books to go!….

  53. Ok, I’m retired, so I’ve finished 25 books — also reading frantically for Arizona Awards nominations committee meetings so that motivation helps.

    What do I do now?

    Absolute favorites?
    Beauty Queens, and Eleanor & Park, of course
    Go: A Kidd’s Guide to Graphic Design — such a good tie-in to the CCS visual emphasis

    So much of the non-fiction is excellent — parts of history students never hear about and new angles on what they do know

    Far, Far Away and Navigating Early are wonderful, but I wonder about how appealing they are to teens — I’d love to know about others’ experiences with them

    1. Congrats, Marney! I’ll follow up with you (and all other finishers) via email. We’d love to hear more of your thoughts as a “Reader Response” piece on The Hub! Thanks for participating, and again, congrats on finishing!

  54. This is a great idea. It’s fun to have a goal to work toward and I’m coming across all kinds of diverse titles. I appreciate the mix of print and audio, too. Since starting this challenge, I’ve read 6, and am nearing the end of my 7th (Yaqui Delgado).

  55. I just found out about the challenge, but I’m going to try and complete it in the next month! :)

  56. I’m very late starting, but I read the nonfiction award finalists during our faculty version of the Nonfiction Challenge, so those 5 are done. I’ll have to see whether I’ve read any of the others in the designated window, but whatever gets read is good, right?

  57. I found out about this, and had already been reading YA literature quite a bit since February while interviewing for and beginning a new job as Librarian in California, so I will count books read during this challenge period, going back to my goodreads and my interiew preparation notes to be sure I only count things read during this time period. With two weeks to go, I will have some intense reading to do, but now it counts for Summer Reading Challenge too, so that’s good!

    Even if I don’t manage to complete the target number, I’ll be a lot further along, so I’m game. .

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