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Penn Valley - Read Harder Challenge: Home

This guide contains information about Penn Valley Library's 2021 Read Harder Challenge

2021 Read Harder Challenge

Book Riot's Read Harder Challenge is back to excite you with new ways to read outside the lines, read differently, and read more. We're excited to bring this challenge to the Penn Valley campus again in 2021 with a twist- we've added 2 bonus tasks just for Penn Valley. There are 26 reading tasks designed to get you out of your reading comfort zone and expand your worldview. Read as much or as little as you'd like, and don't forget books can overlap on reading tasks!

This year we're asking participants to sign up using this form. This will help us stay connected to you! 

 

How to Participate

 

Download a List- Keep track of your reading using this PDF or let us know when you finish a book by using this simple form and we'll keep track for you. 

Read Amazing Books- We've created a list of books we have available at Penn Valley Library. There is a bit of everything- E-Books, E-Audio Books, PV Books, and PV Books on CD! This year we've added two Penn Valley specific bonus tasks! Read a book from the PV President's Book Club and Read the Penn Valley Common Read. You'll find them at the bottom of the list of books.

Win Prizes- Read as much or as little as you'd like. Once you're finished, email your list to amy.fortner@mcckc.edu and you'll receive a prize! (Prizes are for Penn Valley participants only.)

Book Picks

How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

Task 2: Read a nonfiction book about anti-racism

Ibram X. Kendi's concept of antiracism reenergizes and reshapes the conversation about racial justice in America--but even more fundamentally, points us toward liberating new ways of thinking about ourselves and each other. In How to be an Antiracist, Kendi asks us to think about what an antiracist society might look like, and how we can play an active role in building it.

In this book, Kendi weaves together an electrifying combination of ethics, history, law, and science, bringing it all together with an engaging personal narrative of his own awakening to antiracism. How to Be an Antiracist is an essential work for anyone who wants to go beyond an awareness of racism to the next step: contributing to the formation of a truly just and equitable society.

Love After the End: An Anthology of Two-Spirit and Indigiqueer Speculative Fiction by Joshua Whitehead (Editor)

Task 5: Read a genre novel by an Indigenous, First Nations, or Native American author

Love After the End is a new young adult anthology edited by Joshua Whitehead (Lambda Literary Award winner, Jonny Appleseed) featuring short stories by Indigenous authors with Two-Spirit & Queer heroes, in utopian and dystopian settings.

This is a sequel to the popular anthology, Love Beyond Body Space and Time (2019 AILA Youth Honor Book), and features several of the same authors returning, along with new voices!

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins

Task 7: Read a fat-positive romance

Task 14: Read a realistic YA book not set in the U.S., UK, or Canada

What would you do if you had to spend the next 15 days with your lifelong crush?

Felipe gets it -- he's fat. Not chubby. Not big-boned. Fat. And he doesn't need anyone to remind him, which is, of course, what everyone does. That's why he's been waiting for this moment ever since the school year began: school break. Finally, he'll be able to spend some time far away from school and the classmates who tease him incessantly. His plans include catching up on his favorite TV shows, finishing his to-be-read pile, and watching YouTube tutorials on skills he'll never actually put into practice.

But things get a little out of hand when Felipe's mom informs him that Caio, the neighbor kid from apartment 57, will be spending the next 15 days with them while his parents are on vacation. Felipe is distraught because A) he's had a crush on Caio since, well, forever, and B) Felipe has a list of body image insecurities and absolutely NO idea how he's going to entertain his neighbor for two full weeks.

Suddenly, the days ahead of him that once promised rest and relaxation (not to mention some epic Netflix bingeing) end up bringing a whirlwind of feelings, forcing Felipe to dive head-first into every unresolved issue he has had with himself -- but maybe, just maybe, he'll manage to win over Caio, too.

Dread Nation (Dread Nation #1) by Justina Ireland

Task 19: Read a historical fiction with a POC or LGBTQ+ protagonist

Task 22: Read a book set in the Midwest

Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg and Chancellorsville—derailing the War Between the States and changing America forever. In this new nation, safety for all depends on the work of a few, and laws like the Native and Negro Reeducation Act require certain children attend combat schools to learn to put down the dead. But there are also opportunities—and Jane is studying to become an Attendant, trained in both weaponry and etiquette to protect the well-to-do. It’s a chance for a better life for Negro girls like Jane. After all, not even being the daughter of a wealthy white Southern woman could save her from society’s expectations.

But that’s not a life Jane wants. Almost finished with her education at Miss Preston’s School of Combat in Baltimore, Jane is set on returning to her Kentucky home and doesn’t pay much mind to the politics of the eastern cities, with their talk of returning America to the glory of its days before the dead rose. But when families around Baltimore County begin to go missing, Jane is caught in the middle of a conspiracy, one that finds her in a desperate fight for her life against some powerful enemies. And the restless dead, it would seem, are the least of her problems.

Raybearer (Raybearer #1) by Jordan Ifueko

Task 17: Read an own voices YA book with a Black main character that isn’t about Black pain

Tarisai has always longed for the warmth of a family. She was raised in isolation by a mysterious, often absent mother known only as The Lady. The Lady sends her to the capital of the global empire of Aritsar to compete with other children to be chosen as one of the Crown Prince’s Council of 11. If she’s picked, she’ll be joined with the other Council members through the Ray, a bond deeper than blood. That closeness is irresistible to Tarisai, who has always wanted to belong somewhere. But The Lady has other ideas, including a magical wish that Tarisai is compelled to obey: Kill the Crown Prince once she gains his trust. Tarisai won’t stand by and become someone’s pawn—but is she strong enough to choose a different path for herself?

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