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{Wrap up} Cold Winter Challenge 2020

{Wrap up} Cold Winter Challenge 2020

This is the third year I’ve taken part in the Cold Winter Reading Challenge, and the first year I’ve blogged about it. Originally created up by one of my favourite booktubers: Margaud Liseuse, but this year she handed the running of it over to L’Enluminée. This year’s CWC ran from the 1st December 2020 to the 28th February 2021.

This year I decided to aim for the second tier of the challenge: Flocon de neige, for which I had to read 4 books based on 2 prompts from 2 of the different reading menus. I actually ended up reading a 5th book for this challenge, which was cool!

The menus I chose were: Mysterious Winter, and Walking Together in the Snow.


For Mysterious Winter‘s first prompt, New Year, New Me, I read “Pride” by Idi Zoboi. A review can be found here. The evolution the main character goes through feels realistic, and I loved the fresh take on “Pride and Prejudice“.

The second prompt, Snow Queen, was fulfilled by one of my many comfort re-reads: “Wildwood Dancing” by Juliet Marillier.
This book is a retelling of the fairy tale “The 12 Dancing Princesses”. Set in a magical Romania, the magical atmosphere of this book sucks me in every time.


The two prompts I read for Walking Together in the Snow were Santa’s Reindeer, and Aurora Borealis.

I chose “The Tale of Shikonoko” for Santa’s Reindeer. I really enjoyed the book until the part where [highlight below – spoiler]

the hero rapes a teenager (she’s practically a child).

Which put me right off.

The second prompt, Aurora Borealis required that I read a book with a journey or adventure in. Monty Don’s “The Road to Le Tholonet” was a brilliant discovery.
It isn’t the sort of book I normally read but as it’s one of the 1000 books I got off E-Bay, it’s one in my collection. It was partly an exploration of various gardens’ histories, and partly review of said gardens. As a professional gardener, Don knows his acorns (see what I did there?), and as a professional TV and radio presenter, he knows how to write a compelling yarn. The gardens were a charming mix of small gardens he got to know in his younger years in Provence, and also grand gardens like those of Chenonceaux, and Versailles.

I would absolutely read something by Monty Don in the future.


Overall: this challenge encouraged me to read outside of my comfort zone, which was definitely for the best. Any worries I had about the challenge changing radically because of the change of hands were assuaged by the excellent challenge prompts created by L’Enluminée. This remains my favourite seasonal reading challenge, and I’m already looking forward to the 2021 Cold Winter Challenge!

 
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Posted by on March 11, 2021 in Uncategorized

 

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{Review} The First Step (A Thousand Li series) by Tao Wong

{Review} The First Step (A Thousand Li series) by Tao Wong

I have wanted to read a xianxia novel since I watched a TV adaptation of The Untamed, and felt a giddy rush of love for the genre. Before I rush breathlessly into the review, I’m going to give a quick explanation of what xianxia actually is.

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Posted by on March 2, 2021 in Uncategorized

 

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{Book Review} Pride by Ibi Zoboi

{Book Review} Pride by Ibi Zoboi

Hello, my name is WildNightIn, and I have an addiction to retellings of Jane Austen novels. If you’ve gone out on a limb and guessed that “Pride” is a retelling of “Pride and Prejudice“, then you are 100% correct. But if you think you already know how this story is going to pan out then you, my friend, are going to be pleasantly surprised.

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Posted by on February 17, 2021 in 2021 Challenges

 

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Reading Challenge 2021: one I bet you haven’t heard of before

I don’t know about you, but this year is probably going to be spent hunkering down and trying to power through until the vaccine gets rolled out across the country. So unlike most years where I sign up to a dozen reading challenges and only finish 2, this year I’m only going to sign up for 2 of my favourites and not get frustrated if I don’t complete them both (or indeed either of them).

This a post about one that I’ve been doing for a few years now. Originally I was not going to take part in it this year, but as we have had so much snow over the last week I am feeling quite excited about taking part in such a wonderful, atmospheric challenge.

So what’s this atmospheric click-baity sounding reading challenge that I think you won’t have heard of before?

Cold Winter Challenge 2020

Created by one of my favourite Booktubers, Margaud Liseuse, who has decided to hand the torch on to L’Enluminée this year. This winter themed reading challenge runs from 1st December 2020 to 28th February 2021 which gives you enough time to stay curled up in your cosiest reading spot immersed in the festive spirit until spring is just within view.

The challenge has 3 levels:

  1. Une vie de lutin” which translates as “An elf’s life“. For this challenge, you read a book based on one prompt from one of the 5 reading menus on offer. Just one book, and you are a winner, my friend!
  2. Flocon de neige” / “Snowflake” is the next level. For this you need to read books based on two prompts from two different menus.
  3. Mordu.e de l’hiver” / “Winterholic” is for the hard-core winter reading lover. To gain this lofty title you need to read books based on all the prompts from 4 menus (or 5 if you’re going for glory and reading the bonus menu as well).

The 5 menus each contain 3 prompts. I feel that translating them to English here will spoil the flow, so if anyone wants a translation of any of the prompts then feel free to ask! Here they are:

Menu 1: “Magie de Noel” / “Christmas magic“.

The prompts are:
Under the mistletoe” choose to read a romance or a feel-good novel set at Christmas or New Year.
Raclette” for which you read a book based on family, friends, or secrets.
Danse de la fée Dragée” choose a book based on a dream, set in a dreamlike universe, or choose a fantasy novel.

Menu 2: “Hiver Mystérieux” / “Mysterious Winter

The prompts are:
Yule” read a book based on mythology, legends, or deities.
Reine des Neiges” choose a book with a powerful female character, one containing magic, or one containing feminism.
New Year, new me” read a book containing a metamorphosis, transformation, or evolution.


Menu 3: “Marcher Ensemble Dans la Neige” / “Walking Together in The Snow

The prompts are:
Rennes du Pere Noel” read a book about or including animals, nature or ecology.
Aurore Boréale” choose a book with a journey, or adventure in, or a travel book.
Carol of the Bell” for which you choose a choral novel, or one with different narrators, or one where many different characters share the same experience.

Menu 4: “Hiver Obscur” / “Dark Winter

The prompts are:
Fantomes des Noel passés” read a book containing ghosts or spirits, a journey through time, or even a book that takes place in several different times.
Frissonner sous un plaid” choose a horror, thriller, mystery, or suspense novel.
Nuit de solstice” read a book that’s under 300 pages.

Bonus Menu: “Au Chaud Devant La Cheminée” / “Warm In Front Of The Fire

The prompts are:
Grands Enfants” read a children’s book.
Vitrine de Noel” read a graphic novel, or an illustrated novel that’s set during the winter season. It can be a Christmas one, but doesn’t have to be.
Chocolat Chaud” a book that makes you feel good. From any genre.

Most of my reading friends haven’t heard of this challenge because it’s run by French-speaking Booktubers. I think it deserves some extra recognition because it is so incredibly festive, and the community is incredibly supportive and friendly.

Are you inspired to take part? If you do and you post about it on social media, feel free to use the hashtags: #coldwinterchallenge or #cwc

Happy reading to you all!

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2021 in Uncategorized

 

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