One of the first book bloggers I followed when I started blogging at Reviews From the Stacks is Elaine Howlin. About a month ago she posted about something called Jane Austen July (read the post here); at this time I was in the midst of enjoying the Louisa May Alcott Reading Challenge, and decided to look into the challenge and consider participating.
The challenge is officially hosted by two BookTubers (people who make YouTube videos talking about books – like a blog, except with videos instead of written posts): Katie @ Books and Things and Marissa @ Blatantly Bookish. Personally, the video format is not my favorite, but for those who it does work for, great! Fortunately, one of the vloggers (Katie) also has a blog, and there is also a Goodreads Group dedicated to the event.
This challenge is a bit more complicated than the LMA one. Here are the guidelines:
1. Read one of Jane Austen’s six novels
2. Read something by Jane Austen that is not one of her main six novels
3. Read a non-fiction work about Jane Austen or her time
4. Read a retelling of a Jane Austen book
5. Read a book by a contemporary of Jane Austen
6. Watch a direct screen adaptation of a Jane Austen book
7. Watch a modern screen adaptation of a Jane Austen book
Needless to say, that is a lot to take on! Given the fact that I was still reading Cloud Atlas and The House of the Seven Gables at the beginning of July, I decided to forego attempting all seven tasks. Instead, I decided that if I finished either Cloud Atlas or The House of the Seven Gables with more than a week left in July, I would read just one Austen-related work: Northanger Abbey. I might also watch one of the movies, but reading this book is my main focus.
Last Friday I finally finished reading Cloud Atlas. That book was a wild ride, but that discussion is for another post. There is still a little over a week left in July, so now I get to move on to Northanger Abbey! I have never read Northanger Abbey, but it sounds like something I should enjoy, and I have read a variety of both positive and negative reviews. Since it is Austen’s shortest novel, I hope that I will be able to read it by the end of the month. I also put a graphic novel version on hold at the library, so if I finish the original version in a timely manner, I will read that adaptation as well and check off another task from my personal year-long reading challenge!
What are your thoughts on Northanger Abbey? Have you ever joined a challenge when it is technically already more than halfway over? Let’s talk about it in the comments!
Until the next chapter,