OPL invites patrons to take part in the 2022 Reading Challenge, opens a new window! For each challenge, OPL offers suggestions for titles to listen to or read. As you’re working through the challenge, feel free to tag @omahalibrary on Twitter, opens a new window, Instagram, opens a new window, or Facebook, opens a new window, to let us know which read you picked up this month!
I don’t know about you all, but this weather has me wishing I were anywhere but Omaha! Perhaps you, too, are not feeling the ups-and-downs of our current climate. Maybe the mid-year burnout is hitting you?
Instead of loading yourself up with self-care books full of motivational and lifestyle advice, I recommend picking up a book about travel. Many of us turn to books to “escape” our present, and this reading challenge is a perfect fit. Let your mind go as far away from your current perch as you feel comfortable.
Destination: L-O-V-E! Add these to your TBR pile if you want some romance with your travel. Escape on a spontaneous holiday vacation with the heartwarming "Royal Holiday, opens a new window." In “The Romantic Agenda, opens a new window,” Joy is invited to vacation with her boss/best friend and his new girlfriend who is bringing her friend and ex-boyfriend! And the ultimate rom-com question of “What if you picked up the wrong suitcase and fell head over heels for its mystery owner?” is answered in “Just Haven’t Met You Yet, opens a new window.” After the death of her fiancé, Anna decides to complete the sailing voyage they had planned, alone. Sail away with her in the heartfelt story, “Float Plan, opens a new window.”
Looking for a book that makes you utter Liz Lemon’s famous line, “I want to go to there!”, check out these novels with a strong sense of place: "Six Days in Rome, opens a new window," “Paris for One & Other Stories, opens a new window,” “Enchanted August, opens a new window,” “The Old Drift, opens a new window,” or “Red Island House, opens a new window.”
If traveling to a new destination isn’t your vibe, what about traveling through time?? "This Is How You Lose the Time War, opens a new window" features two time-traveling agents from warring futures, working their way through the past, and when they begin to exchange letters, could their love end the war? Intricately plotted and fast-paced, “Atomic Anna, opens a new window” will leap from 1986 to 1992! Time travel was made for the speculative psychological suspense reader! Turn to “The 22 Murders of Madison May, opens a new window” for an offbeat and witty thriller. Fans of the TV series Russian Doll might enjoy “The Other Me, opens a new window” for a visit to an alternate reality.
Did you know some people are lucky enough to get paid to travel and all they have to do is write about?? Okay, writing about it can be difficult, but if you want to pretend to have gone on some wild adventures, reading travelogues is the way to do it. I don’t think you can go wrong with any Bill Bryson, opens a new window. "Lands of Lost Borders: A Journey on the Silk Road, opens a new window" is an evocative travelogue and memoir of the author’s bicycle journey. Whip through the Grand Canyon with “The Emerald Mile: The Epic Story of the Fastest Ride in History Though the Heart of the Grand Canyon, opens a new window.” Flight of fancy? Check out “Medallion Status: True Stories from Secret Rooms, opens a new window” by John Hodgman. Former The Daily Show writer Hodgman's obsession with gaining “medallion status” with his much-beloved airline of choice forms the backbone of this laughable memoir-in-essays about travel, almost-fame and the metrics we adopt to understand our lives.
And of course, there are historical expeditions worth reading about and assist you with preparing your audition for Drunk History! Try "Eighty Days: Nelly Bly and Elizabeth Bisland's History-making Race Around the World, opens a new window" or “To the Edges of the Earth: 1909, the Race for the Three Poles, and the Climax of the Age of Exploration, opens a new window.”
Safe travels, my friends!
For more ideas check out this list, opens a new window or request a custom reading list or book bundle,, opens a new window tailored to your interests by OPL librarians.
You may submit your completed reading log online, opens a new window, or return a completed tracking sheet to any OPL branch to receive a pin and to be entered into a drawing for some fun literary-themed prizes! All completed tracking sheets or online challenge form entries must be received by December 31, 2022, to be entered into the prize drawing.