My 20 books of summer (plus a few extras)

The 20 Books of Summer is a reading challenge to read 20 books in June, July and August.

I heard about this originally on Ayushi’s blog, but the challenge was created by Cathy at 746 Books. So far there are over 150 other bloggers taking part! I thought that this sounds great so I had to join. But since I read fast (and have been reading more since lockdown), I am going to try to aim for 60 books this summer.

Some of these will be for upcoming book tours or books I am reading for authors or publishers. But I hope that this challenge will also encourage me to tackle some of my Unread Shelf, both physical and digital! These are all books that I have bought (some years ago!) but haven’t yet read.

Here are the Unread Shelf books I will be trying to read for this challenge, with links to Goodreads (in no particular order).

Fiction eBooks

  1. Aurora Rising, by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. — ✔️ Finished 20th June!
  2. A Song of Wraiths and Ruin, by Roseanne Brown. This is Roseanne’s debut novel and the first of a duology. I kept seeing this on Twitter and was instantly drawn to the beautiful cover!
  3. Six of Crows, by Leigh Bardugo. I started this a while back but never finished it even though I was enjoying reading it, so I would love to finish it.
  4. Queen of the Conquered, by Kacen Callender.
  5. The Painted Man, by Peter V. Brett. I picked this up YEARS ago yet I’ve never read it!
  6. Blood Song, by Anthony Ryan. Again, I bought this many years ago (2014!) yet I haven’t read it!
  7. The Copper Promise, by Jen Williams.
  8. Ten Thousand Doors of January, by Alix E. Harrow.
  9. Shadow of the Fox, by Julie Kagawa.
  10. Vox, by Christina Dalcher. — ✔️ Finished 26th June!
  11. Girl, Woman, Other, by Bernadine Evaristo. I have had this on my list for a while, as I want to read all of the winners and nominees for the Women’s Prize for Fiction!
  12. Children of Blood and Bone, by Tomi Adeyemi.
  13. The Black Tides of Heaven, by J Y Yang.

Non-fiction eBooks

  1. A River in Darkness: One Man’s Escape from North Korea, by Masaji Ishikawa.
  2. Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race, by Reni Eddo-Lodge.
  3. The Good Immigrant, by various authors.

Fiction physical books

  1. House of Leaves, by Mark Z. Danielewski. I tried to read this when I was a teenager but it scared me too much(!). I hope I can finish it now — I am braver (well, sort of).
  2. Three Dark Crowns, by Kendare Blake.
  3. Illuminae, by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. — Currently reading!
  4. The Silent Companions, by Laura Purcell.
  5. Bone China, by Laura Purcell.
  6. Malice, by John Gwynne.
  7. The Sword of Shannara, by Terry Brooks. This was a gift the Christmas before last, I read about half but never finished it.
  8. The Gunslinger, by Stephen King. I bought the box set of the first four books in the series YEARS ago, I read the first few pages of this but couldn’t get into it.
  9. Nevernight, by Jay Kristoff.
  10. Rotherweird, by Andrew Caldecott.
  11. The Lie Tree, by Frances Hardinge.
  12. Rendezvous with Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke. I originally read this when I was 9 or 10 (I got the Rama PC game as a birthday gift from my grandparents) and I don’t remember much of it.
  13. The Starless Sea, by Erin Morgenstern. This was a Christmas gift too, a perfect choice as I love The Night Circus!
  14. Early Riser, by Jasper Fforde.
  15. The Long Earth, by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter.
  16. Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman. This is the only book of Neil’s that I haven’t read!
  17. The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents, by Terry Pratchett.
  18. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman. This is a gorgeous illustrated edition I was given for Christmas, so I want to re-read it!
  19. If It Bleeds, by Stephen King.
  20. The Outsider, by Stephen King.
  21. The Stand, by Stephen King.
  22. Lord’s Foul Bane, by Stephen Donaldson.

Non-fiction physical books

  1. The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story, by Hyeonseo Lee.
  2. North Korea Journal, by Michael Palin.
  3. Explore/Create: My Life in Pursuit of New Frontiers, Hidden Worlds, and the Creative Spark, by Richard Garriott. Not only did Richard create the Ultima games (a big influence on my childhood!), but he is a very interesting person too! My Dad lent me this as he enjoyed it.
  4. The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fuck, by Sarah Knight.


  1. Jamaica Inn, by Daphne Du Maurier. I picked this up in the same Waterstones while on holiday in Cornwall — it seemed appropriate! I’ve read about half and then Christmas happened, but I was enjoying it a lot so I want to re-read it.
  2. Moby Dick, by Herman Melville.
  3. Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo. I’ve read the first part, now I just need to read the rest!
  4. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy.

Phew! Obviously there is no guarantee that I will read all of these, but I’d love to try. Fingers crossed!