Do I Have That Book? Challenge

Do I Have That Book_

I first came across this book tag after watching Hannah and Hailey’s Booktube channels. The Challenge was originally created by Tabby at the YouTube channel Keeping Tabs.

As you know, I don’t have a YouTube channel (yet), so we’ll do this the blogger way.

Let’s get right into it.

1. Do you have a book with deckled edges?


Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances by Neil Gaiman

I actually really detest deckled edges, as I think it cheapens the look of the overall book. Despite that, I have so many books with these edges. Stop it, please!

2. Do you have a book with 3 or more people on the cover?

Star Trek: The Next Generation Imzadi

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Imzadi by Peter David

I knew I’d have to go with one of my Star Trek novels for this, as I very rarely buy books with people on the cover.

3. Do you have a book based on another fictional story?


This Monstrous Thing by Mackenzi Lee

I could only find two retellings, although I have a feeling I have more than that. My other choice could have been Ibi Zoboi’s PrideLee’s This Monstrous Thing is a Frankenstein retelling.

4. Do you have a book with a title 10 letters long?


Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor

This one took me way longer to find that I’d like to admit. I haven’t read this story yet, but I’ve heard great things about it.

5. Do you have a book with a title that starts and ends with the same letter?


The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

You know I have to throw my favorite book in here somewhere, right?

6. Do you have a Mass Market Paperback book?


One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

I never understood the amount of hate surrounding mass market paperbacks. They’re cheap, which makes them more accessible to a lot of people. You don’t always need to have the most expensive, nicest version of every book.

7. Do you have a book written by an author using a pen name?


Anthem by Ayn Rand

I had to do a wee bit of research for this one. Ayn Rand’s real name is Alisa Zinov’yevna Rosenbaum.

8. Do you have a book with a character’s name in the title?


Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke

I still haven’t read this behemoth of a book, and I don’t even really know what it’s about. I picked it up on a thrift store trip a couple years ago.

9. Do you have a book with 2 maps in it?



Skyward by Brandon Sanderson

Brandon Sanderson’s novels are always full of maps, so this was an easy one.

10. Do you have a book that was turned into a TV show?


Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

Technically, this series hasn’t been made into a television show yet, but it’s going to be. I can’t wait for the Netflix series! 

11. Do you have a book written by someone who is originally famous for something else? (celebrity/athlete/politician/tv personality…)


The Assault on Reason by Al Gore

It’s been ages since I read this book. I read it for one of my university classes back when I was still studying political science. I don’t have any books written by actors or musicians, so a vice president is the best I could do.

12. Do you have a book with a clock on the cover?


The Clockmaker’s Daughter by Kate Morton

This was one of the first books I chose for my Book of the Month Club box. I still haven’t read it, but I’m hoping to get to it soon!

13. Do you have a poetry book?


Harvest Poems by Carl Sandburg

I have very few poetry collections. This is an ancient collection I’ve had through multiple moves and for who knows how many years. You’d think I’d have read it by now. I haven’t.

14. Do you have a book with an award stamp on it?


The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

The award stamps aren’t attached to this cover very well (you can see in the picture that they’re peeling), but The Hate U Give deserves all the awards it’s received.

Read my review of The Hate U Give here. 

15. Do you have a book written by an author with the same initials as you?


Nope. This is the only question I couldn’t answer. I even looked up a list of authors whose last names start with W and still couldn’t find any P.W’s whose books I own. Oh well.

16. Do you have a book of short stories?


Stone Mattress: Nine Wicked Tales by Margaret Atwood

I love Margaret Atwood’s writing style, and this book of short stories are phenomenal.

17. Do you have a book that is between 500-510 pages long?


Gandhi: An Autobiography by Mahatma Gandhi

Finding a book that was between 500 and 510 pages took me so long. I’d almost given up before I grabbed this one, which comes in around 502 pages, not including the glossary/index.

18. Do you have a book that was turned into a movie?


Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier

I can’t say I enjoyed the movie adaptation of Cold Mountain, but it is one of my favorite stories set in my beloved Appalachian Mountains.

19. Do you have a graphic novel?


Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi

This graphic novel memoir of the author’s childhood in Iran during the Islamic Revolution is incredible.

20. Do you have a book written by 2 or more authors?


The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

I was surprised that I don’t own more books with more than one author. Aside from a few of my Star Trek novels, this is the only one I could find.

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An Update on the #readtheworld Challenge


At the beginning of the month, I announced the Read The World Challenge, where each month I would pick a different country and read books in translation from that country or non-fiction books about that country.

In November, I chose China, and there were some great posts. See the November Wrap-Up for more info on those.


I wanted to post an update to the challenge and what I learned during the first month. Most notably, that it is really stressful trying to find books in translation and read a bunch of books from a specific country when you also have other books you need and want to read.

Moving forward, each month will not have a particular theme, but I am going to read at least three books in translation each month. I have a bowl with the names of every country on earth in it, including some contested areas such as Tibet. Three times each month, I’m going to pull Countries out of the bowl and read a book from each place.

This update to the challenge will allow me to be less stressed out about the whole project while still reading plenty of #intranslation books. I love reading books that were originally written in other countries because it allows us to learn about other cultures and travel to places we may not be able to otherwise. I’m looking forward to reading a lot of new books moving forward.

I really enjoyed having Meonicorn from The Bookish Land do a guest post, and I want to include plenty of guest posts each month. If you are from a country outside of America and you’re interested in writing about the literature of where you’re from, head to the Contact page and shoot me an email.

I hope this isn’t disappointing to anyone. I had fully intended to move forward with the challenge with how I had originally approached it at the beginning of the month, but it was just too much to take on. Choosing three #intranslation books per month is much more doable, and I hope you’ll stick around for those books in December.

GUEST POST: 7 Chinese Books in the Last 70 Years from Meonicorn

For the #readtheworldchina challenge, the amazing Meonicorn of The Bookish Land has written a guest post about 7 Chinese Books of the past 70 years. I love Meonicorn’s blog and Youtube channel, so definitely go check her out for some amazing content and book recommendations. 

The Bookish Land

7 Chinese Books in Recent 70 Years

By Meonicorn ( The Bookish Land)

Hi, I am Meonicorn from the BookTube channel: The Bookish Land. Thanks a lot to Penny for inviting me to talk about books from China (since I was born and raised in China, I love talking about them). China has a long history of literature but I feel it’s very difficult to find Chinese books that have been translated into English, especially the recent publishes. So I’ve selected 7 Chinese books from the recent 70 years, maybe you’ll find them interesting, and hope we will have more good Chinese books translated into English in the future!

2010 – NOW: FOLDING BEIJING by Hao Jingfang, 2012, Genre: Science Fiction


This Hugo Award-winning novelette was set in an unspecified future when people have been divided into three classes and lived in Beijing accordingly. Beijing cycles every 48 hours, where the first 24 hours belong to the highest class, the next 16 hours belong to the second class and the last 8 hours belong to the rest of the population. The living space for each class was folded when they were not using it and the people were put to asleep, and the space would be unfolded when people could use it. People were forbidden to travel across different space. However, a worker called Lao Dao decided to do so because of his daughter and started his space traveling journey.

This novelette was translated by Ken Liu, who also translated the Hugo Award-winning novel The Three-Body Problem.

2000 – 2009: THE LAST QUARTER OF THE MOON by Chi Zijian, 2005, Genre: Historical Fiction


This was a beautiful family saga about an ethnic group called Evenki, it is told from the perspective of the wife of the last chief in their tribe, following her story for almost 100 years. Their tribe experienced changes from traditional hunting lifestyle to modern culture lifestyle, accepted opportunities and losses, as well as glories and declines. The narrator was also changed by time and generations. The book was beautifully written, the language was poetic, the story was atmospheric and the culture was mysterious.

This novel won the Maodun Literary Prize in 2008. (One of the most important literary prizes in China)


1990 – 1999: TO LIVE by Yu Hua, 1993. Genre: Literary Fiction


To Live discussed the meaning of life with the story of Fugui. Fugui was born in a wealthy family but lost all his fortune by gambling. After that, his life seemed to be a tragedy, his family suffered from the consequences of poverty, he himself had a difficult time living. Whenever there was a warm moment in life, it would be destroyed in the next second.

This book was written when the author was facing some life difficulties, it was a reflection of the author’s life and his attitude towards life.




1980 – 1989 RED SORGHUM by Mo Yan, 1986, Genre: Historical Fiction


Red Sorghum was a multi-generation novel. The story happened in 1930 when World War II happened and China was fighting with Japan. The protagonists were heroes who fought with Japan but knew little about why they fight, who loved deeply but didn’t know what’s love, who contributed to the country but also did illegal business. This book shows the complexities of human nature and the unclearness of moral truth.

This book was one of the most famous books by the Nobel Prize in Literature winner Mo Yan.




1970 – 1979 THE ANSWER by Bei Dao, 1976. Genre: Poetry

The Answer was a poetry collection by Chinese poet Bei Dao, it was also the title of one of his most famous poems. The poem was written after The Cultural Revolution in China ended and people were struggling between confusion and development. It shouted out the question the poet had “The Ice Age is over now/ Why is there ice everywhere? The Cape of Good Hope has been discovered/ Why do a thousand sails contest the Dead Sea?”

1960 – 1969 HALF A LIFELONG ROMANCE by Eileen Chang (Zhang Ailing), 1966. Genre: Literary Fiction


Half a Lifelong Romance is set in Shanghai in the 1930s. It was a love story between engineer Shijun and his colleague Manzhen, where they fall in love but had to separate because of their families. While they are facing their fate, Chinese society was also changing because of World War II. The hope that they may meet again was getting smaller and smaller, but yet they didn’t give up. This was a book about the suffering and sorrows of love, but also about the life in 1930s Shanghai, and how people were played by societal expectations.

This book was originally written in 1948 with the name of The Eighteen Spring, but was edited by the author and re-published as Half a Lifelong Romance in 1966.

1950 – 1959 LEGENDS OF THE CONDOR HEROES by Jin Yong, 1957 – 1959. Genre: Wuxia (Chinese Fantasy).


Legends of the Condor Heroes was a classic Wuxia novel, and it was also a historical fiction. Set between 1199 – 1227, this book followed Guojing’s journey from being a boy who knew nothing about himself and his country to a hero who protected his country and his lover. It has a well-rounded character development and is complex but does not have excess historical background. It was one of the most classic Wuxia fictions, and has been translated into English for the first time in 2018.

Read the World Challenge: China


I’ve been looking for a massive reading challenge to undertake. A few months ago, I decided that I wanted to read a book from every country, which in itself is pretty daunting, as there are 195 officially recognized countries in the world.

Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash

I’m taking it a little further though.

One of the personality traits that I love about myself is my need for complete understanding of a topic. It started when I was a kid, and I became obsessed with reading and memorizing my grandparent’s issues of National Geographic. (To this day, I still collect issues of National Geographic!) When I’d research a topic for school, I wouldn’t just stop once the paper was done – I wanted to understand how everything worked, how a place or thing came into being, and… just everything!

Due to that trait, my reading challenge is this: Every month, I will pick one of the 195 countries to focus on. I’ll read books and comic books and poetry created in that country. I want to learn about that location’s mythology, folklore, culture, food, and everything else I can find. Obviously, I can’t learn everything about a country in a single month, but it’s definitely enough time to learn plenty of new things.

For the first month of this challenge, I chose China for a variety of reasons.

First, my boyfriend, Ian, is an art history major with a particular fondness for classical Chinese history, art, and literature. We had the pleasure of visiting the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, VA when they had a visiting exhibition of China’s famous Terra Cotta Soldiers from Emperor Qin’s tomb. Sometime this month, Ian is going to contribute a few guest posts, which I can’t wait to share with you guys.

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Second, China is one of the world’s earliest civilizations and the foundation of so many great achievements in human history. In fact, some of the most well-known inventions in ancient China are known as the Four Great Inventions: the compass, gunpowder, papermaking, and printing. I’m particularly thankful for their contributions to printing, considering how much I love books and the history of bookmaking.

Third, China is absolutely massive. It’s the most populous country in the world, and one of the largest in terms of landmass. China has so much to offer in terms of landscape, culture, philosophy, music, literature, and so, so, so much more.

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During the month of November, you’re going to be seeing regular posts that focus on Chinese culture and literature. I’ve already started reading one of the four classic Chinese novels, Outlaws of the Marsh, and my library is probably a tiny bit annoyed with me for literally requesting everything they had on China.

One thing I want to mention is that I will still be reading non-Chinese books during the month of November, as I have a ton of new releases and ARCs and my massive TBR list to work on.

I hope you enjoy this new series that will be featured on Read Yourself Happy. If you know of any Chinese books I should check out, please leave those recommendations in the comments.

In December, I’m going to read and learn about Norway, so I’m also taking recommendations for books written in and about Norway.

Feel free to participate and share your thoughts! #readtheworld