Mythical, Mystical, Magical Reading Challenge 2021 (being edited)

Run by Ketutar Writing



Read a fantasy novel from 10 different countries

Read a fantasy novel with

– black and white cover (can have different shades of grey on it, but no color)
– red cover (mostly red)
– orange cover
– yellow cover
– green cover
– blue cover
– purple/lilac/violet cover
– brown cover

Read a book from each of these lists:

Pre-Tolkien Fantasy (and alike)
Fantasy Classics
The Best Epic Fantasy
Hidden Gems: YA-Fantasy Novels
Best Fantasy on Goodreads with less than 100 ratings
Popular Fantasy on Goodreads with between 100 and 999 ratings
Popular Fantasy on Goodreads with between 1000 and 9999 ratings
Popular Fantasy on Goodreads with between 10000 and 24999 ratings

Read a Fantasy novel written in

1930s
1940s
1950s
1960s
1970s
1980s
1990s
2000s
2010s
2020s
and two written before 1930s

Popular Pre-1900 Fantasy Novels
Popular 1900s, 10s and 20s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1930s and 40s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1950s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1960s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1970s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1980s Fantasy Novels
Popular 1990s Fantasy Novels
Popular 2000s Fantasy Novels

Pick an author who writes Fantasy. Read their favorite Fantasy book, a Fantasy book that has inspired them, a Fantasy book they recommend.

Read a Fantasy novel written by a female author
Read a Fantasy novel written by a male author

Read a Fantasy novel with a female MC
Read a Fantasy novel with a male MC

Read a Fantasy novel with a female mentor/tutor/guardian/parental figure
Read a Fantasy novel with a male mentor/tutor/guardian/parental figure

Read a Fantasy novel written by a person who has a different — from you

– gender
– generation
– race/ethnicity
– nationality
– mothertongue
– sexual orientation
– religion (either personal, or if not religious or known, the majority religion of the society/background they come from)

Choose one, choose many, choose all, read one book by each category, combine them all, what ever rocks your boat

Read a Fantasy novel where the MC has a different — from you
(mothertongue in this case means the language the character was written in, not their language.)

Read a Fantasy novel where the MC has at least one parent and grandparent alive, and they have a good relationship with them

Read a Fantasy novel with less than 250 pages
Read a Fantasy novel with 250-350 pages
Read a Fantasy novel with 300-500 pages
Read a Fantasy novel with 500+ pages

Read a Fantasy novel from 10 different subgenres.
Try to choose ones you don’t usually read.
One of them has to be fairy tales. Not retellings. Read a fairy tale you haven’t ever read or heard in any version before.

Read the three first books you haven’t read from any list of “best Fantasy books”

For example:
Times The 100 Best Fantasy Books of All Time
The 25 Best Fantasy Novels
31 of the best fantasy books everyone should read
Top 100 Fantasy Books
The 60 Best Fantasy Books of All Time
Top 25 Best Fantasy Books
/r/fantasy best books

Read a Fantasy book that has received an award

Read a non-Fantasy book that’s related to Fantasy, for example a book about Fantasy literature or fairy tales, a biography of a Fantasy author, or about writing Fantasy

Read a Fantasy book with an amazing cover
Read a Fantasy book with a horrible cover

Read a Fantasy book with a one word title

Read a Fantasy book that was made into a movie or tv-series

Read the Fantasy book you are most ashamed/sorry/irritated of not having read 😀 

Read the Fantasy book that has been on your TBR the longest time
Read the Fantasy book that has been on your TBR the shortest time

Finish a Fantasy series
Start a Fantasy series

Read a self-published Fantasy novel

Reread a favorite

Reread the first Fantasy book you ever read (or the first you remember) 

A literary Map Chain Challenge

Pick a number (how many books you are going to read, at least 5), and pick one of your favorite Fantasy authors and write his/her name on the Literature Map
(If you don’t know where to start, start with Tolkien :-D)
You get a “map” with authors who are more or less similar to that author. The names closest are most similar to the author.
Pick one of the names, check that they have written Fantasy, and read a Fantasy book by that author.
Then insert his/her name in the map and choose the next author.
Continue until you have read the number of books you chose in the beginning of the challenge.
Don’t read the same author twice!

The only rule is that the book has to be Fantasy

Not Science Fiction, not Horror. 

So – what’s the difference?

* fantastical elements must be obvious through the whole work. 

Outlander doesn’t classify as Fantasy, because the only fantastical element I know of was the time travel through some kind of magic. I think there’s some witches in the series later on, but 99% of the book is about the MC and her life in a totally normal environment in our world, and relations with other totally normal humans.

 * non-humans should be Fantasy races, not classical horror monsters, like vampires, werewolves, zombies and ghosts. Let’s say that if they were humans once, and then something happened and now they are something else, then it’s not fantasy. Even when the story in itself isn’t a horror story, I classify it as belonging to Horror genre. This is why I have discarded a bunch of books that are marked as “Fantasy” on Goodreads, and that some others classify as Fantasy. If you have a vampire fighting heroine, or vampires fighting other vampires and werewolves, I classify it as part of Horror, not Fantasy.

* Paranormal events and talents classify also as Horror (ghost stories, most of the things Stephen King writes about), even if the story in itself isn’t horrifying. Like Bid Time Return (Somewhere in Time). Unless the story is set in a Fantasy world, and the paranormal is just part of that world.

* science should be equal or lesser partner to magic. Steampunk counts as Fantasy, when it’s set in a Fantasy world, like in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld. If the world doesn’t have magic, more than our world does, and everything can be explained with science, technology, machines, and aliens, then it’s SciFi, not Fantasy.

* Dystopian and post-apocalyptic stories are 9/10 SciFi, and not Fantasy. Hunger Games is not Fantasy. 

* Magical realism is not a subgenre of Fantasy in my book, but it’s own genre. It can be hard to separate Urban Fantasy and Magical realism, because they both are set in our modern world, but with a magical twist. In Urban Fantasy, the world is fantastical, with magic and magical beings, just as any other kind of Fantasy, but it’s set in a world that looks like our world. In Magical realism, it’s our world, but with… let’s say chaos pockets, where magical things can happen. 

* Even though a book is classified as Fantasy or Urban Fantasy, I don’t count it as Fantasy, unless it fulfills these requirements. Check the genre classification on Goodreads, and if it says something like this:
Fantasy > Paranormal,
Fantasy > Supernatural,
Romance > Paranormal Romance,
Fantasy > Urban Fantasy,
Paranormal > Vampires
Science Fiction > Steampunk
Horror > Zombies
Science Fiction > Alternate History
Science Fiction > Time Travel
etc., it doesn’t qualify as Fantasy for this challenge.

Bah, whom am I kidding? 😀
Read what ever you want. 😀

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