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Mary Havens: The Reading Challenge (TRC) 2024

Reference Librarian/Associate Professor


What is TRC?

  1. The Reading Challenge is a year long (January 1st - December 31st) challenge.
  2. Any book read during this challenge, that fulfills a category, applies!
  3. Only one book per category, please.
  4. It cannot be a book you have read before unless otherwise indicated (example: revisit a childhood favorite). 
  5. Once you sign-up, you will be added to a Google Sheet where you can keep track of what books you read.
  6. A list of suggested ACC titles is available. 

Questions? Email Mary at

Suggested Titles

man and woman in blue jackets with their backs turned

Locked Room Mystery Category - Anxious People by Frederick Backman

red claws gripping on blue background

Ends on an Odd Numbered Page Category - Our Shadows Have Claws edited by Yamile Saied Méndez

three young men in winter jackets in front of pizza restaurant

Plot Contains Music Category - Beastie Boys by Mike D.

two silhouettes of men in orange on purple background with orange flowers

Purple Cover Category - A Marvellous Light by Freya Marske

white cover with three dust spots

Set in a State You Live/d In - The House of Breath by William Goyen

half of a woman's face wearing medieval chain head covering

Name in the Title Category - Joan by Katherine J. Chen

illustration of two men on their stomachs, backs to reader

Becoming a Movie/TV Show in 2024 Category - Heartstopper v.2 by Alice Oseman

African American man in doorag with chain in red shirt standing in front of red background

Treat Yo'Self (An Author You Love) Category - Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas

large beak with teeth and wings

Short Read (poetry, graphic novel, play, novella) Category - Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll

three wolves with yellow eyes on hill

Ends on an Even Numbered Page Category - Greywaren by Maggie Stiefvater

woman's face with illustrated animals on dark orange background

Features Indigenous Culture/People Category - Warrior Girl Unearthed by Angeline Boulley

large hill with house on top in silhouette

Guilty Pleasure/Indulgent Read Category - The Only One Left by Riley Sager

orange falling man in silhouette on white background with blue whale tail illustration in background

Set During a Holiday You Don't Celebrate Category - The Edge of Sleep by Jake Emanuel

woman holding microphone, man holding guitar

Start/Continue/Finish a Series Category - Kiss the Girl by Zoraida Córdova

young woman with long brown hair in front of red background with white flowers in a vase at the top

Published in the Year of the Dragon - In the Name of Salomé by Julia Alvarez (2000)

illustrated large ocean wave behind fluorescent title letters

Cover Without People On It Category - Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

illustrated man holding broom in doorway

Apostrophe in Title Category - Kim's Convenience by Ins Choi

close up of half of woman's mouth and nose

Title Starts with "L" Category - Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

ink spilling out of inkwell like a river with a canoe on the right, woman on the left of the river

Features the Water Category - At the Bottom of the River by Jamaica Kincaid

woman's face with lots of vegetation around it, full moon in background

Contains Cryptids/Monsters Category - Lobizona by Romina Garber

four African American people in profile with vegetation in front of them and an orange sun in the background

Young Adult Book Category - Black Birds in the Sky by Brandy Colbert

light blue background with small people looking at each other

Vacation Destination! Category - Beautiful World, Where Are You? by Sally Rooney

large orange title letters on fire

Author of Asian Descent Category - Minor Feelings by Cathy Park Hong

African American woman with afro in profile

Banned/Challenged Book Category - Assata by Assata Shakur

pink title letters in front of lounge chair with wine glass on arm

One Word Title Category - Blush by Jamie Brenner

white salt shaker on black background

Book at the Bottom of Your To Read List Category - Salt by Mark Kurlanskey

illustration of woman without a face, in sports bra, taped up like a poloraid

Author with a Different Background than Your Own Category - The Fire Never Goes Out by ND Stevenson

overexposed black and white image of large building with pond in front, black clouds overhead

Narrative Non-Fiction Category - The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

off white cover with tree and animals, made to look like a carving

Picked for the Cover Category - Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo

black book title letters with address for PostSecret on brown background that looks like a paper grocery bag

Secret, Secret, I've Got a Secret - PostSecret by Frank Warren

The 2024 Reading Challenge

illustration of woman on beach chair with book

Join TRC!

What are the categories?

**Categories can be completed in any order**


  1. Locked Room Mystery
  2. Ends on Odd Numbered Page
  3. Plot Contains Music
  4. Purple Cover
  5. Sets in a State You Live/d In
  6. Name in Title
  7. Becoming Movie/TV Show in 2024
  8. Treat Yo'Self (author you love)
  9. Short Read (poetry, novella, graphic novel, play)

Advanced (essential categories plus the following)

  1. Ends on Even Numbered Page
  2. Features Indigenous Culture
  3. Guilty Pleasure/Indulgent Read
  4. Set During a Holiday You Don't Celebrate
  5. Start/Finish/Continue a Series
  6. Published in the Year of the Dragon 
  7. Cover Without People on it
  8. Apostrophe in Title
  9. Title Starts with "L"
  10. Features Water
  11. Contains Cryptids/Monsters
  12. Young Adult
  13. Vacation Destination!
  14. Author of Asian Descent
  15. Banned/Challenged Book
  16. One Word Title
  17. Bottom of Your To-Read List
  18. Author from a Different Background Than Your Own
  19. Narrative Non-Fiction
  20. Picked for the Cover
  21. Secret, Secret, I've Got a Secret

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