** January challenge 2018 – Something New! **

goodreads The Aussie Readers group on Goodreads has the January challenge 2018 Something New!;

It’s 12 months since my last challenge attempt, and 2017 didn’t turn out to be a big year in books for me at all.

Let’s start the new year by reading some new books and new authors. See if you can do these five tasks.
1. Choose one of your favourite books that you read in 2017 and read another book by the same author.
2. Now take the author of this book and go to http://www.literature-map.com/
Choose another author whose name is close to your chosen author and read a book by that author.
3. Choose a book to read from our lists of top 5 -10 Aussie or International books
4. Read a book by an author you have never read before.
5. Read any book of your choice.
Make sure at least two of your books are by Aussie authors!!!

1). Choose one of your favourite books that you read in 2017 and read another book by the same author.
I gave Alastair Humphreys – Microadventures: Local Discoveries for Great Escapes ★★★★★ in 2017.

Alastair Humphreys – Grand Adventures
Following on from his popular Microadventures, in Grand Adventures Alastair Humphreys shines a spotlight on the real-life things that get in the way: stuff like time, money or your other commitments. Grand Adventures is also crammed with hard-won wisdom from people who have actually been there and done that: by boat and boot, car and kayak, bicycle and motorbike. People who had one epic trip then returned to normal life, or who got bitten so badly by the bug that they devoted their life to the pursuit of adventure. Young people, old people. Men, women. Mates, couples, families. Extraordinary, inspiring people. People like you.
(Media: dead tree. This book is sitting ready in my book shelf.)

2). Now take the author of this book and go to http://www.literature-map.com/
Choose another author whose name is close to your chosen author and read a book by that author.

From the literature map it is pretty clear that Patrick Leigh Fermor is the closest author. (I would have guessed Tobias Mews would be closer, but there you go. On further investigation Tobias is not listed.)

❝ Sir Patrick Michael Leigh Fermor DSO OBE was a British author and soldier, who played a prominent role behind the lines in the Battle of Crete during World War II. He was widely regarded as “Britain’s greatest living travel writer”. ❞

Patrick Leigh Fermor – A Time of Gifts (Trilogy #1)
In 1933, at the age of 18, Patrick Leigh Fermor set out on an extraordinary journey by foot – from the Hook of Holland to Constantinople. A Time of Gifts is the first volume in a trilogy recounting the trip, and takes the reader with him as far as Hungary. It is a book of compelling glimpses – not only of the events which were curdling Europe at that time, but also of its resplendent domes and monasteries, its great rivers, the sun on the Bavarian snow, the storks and frogs, the hospitable burgomasters who welcomed him, and that world’s grandeurs and courtesies. His powers of recollection have astonishing sweep and verve, and the scope is majestic. First published to enormous acclaim, it confirmed Fermor’s reputation as the greatest living travel writer, and has, together with its sequel Between the Woods and the Water (the third volume is famously yet to be published), been a perennial seller for 25 years.
(Media: audio book 🎧)
Series: Trilogy

3). Choose a book to read from our lists of top 5 -10 Aussie or International books
From Your end of year top 5 – 10 AUSSIE AUTHOR titles of 2017

Ben Pobjie – Error Australis [AUS]
We’re obsessed with reality television these days yet we so often neglect the greatest reality of all: the reality of our nation, and how it came to be. In Error Australis, TV columnist, comedian and history buff Ben Pobjie recaps the history of Australia from its humble beginnings as a small patch of rapidly cooling rock, to its modern-day status as one of the major powers of the sub-Asian super-Antarctic next-to-Africa region. Pobjie recognises that history can be as gripping as any reality show – as thrilling as it is to see Delta Goodrem’s chair turn around, there is an argument that the Second World War was even more exciting – and like any good recapper, he provides an immediate, visceral sense of what it was like to be there in the moment at our nation’s defining events.
All historians know that it is only by looking at where we have been that we can understand who we are, what we stand for, and why nothing seems to work. Error Australis is a scholastic and side-splittingly funny account of a young nation that has spent many years seeking its place in the world, and almost as many years not liking what it has found.

(Media: audio book 🎧)

4). Read a book by an author you have never read before.

Dion Leonard – Finding Gobi: The true story of a little dog and an incredible journey [AUS]
In 2016, Dion Leonard, a seasoned ultramarathon runner, unexpectedly stumbled across a little stray dog while competing in a gruelling 155 mile race across the Gobi Desert. The lovable pup, who earned the name ‘Gobi’, proved that what she lacked in size, she more than made up for in heart, as she went step for step with Dion over the treacherous Tian Shan Mountains, managing to keep pace with him for nearly 80 miles.
As Dion witnessed the incredible determination of this small animal, he felt something change within himself. In the past he had always focused on winning and being the best, but his goal now was simply to make sure that his new friend was safe, nourished and hydrated. Although Dion did not finish first, he felt he had won something far greater and promised to bring Gobi back to the UK for good to become a new addition to his family. This was the start of a journey neither of them would ever forget with a roller coaster ride of drama, grief, heartbreak, joy and love that changed their lives forever.
Finding Gobi is the ultimate story of hope, of resilience and of friendship, proving once again, that dogs really are ‘man’s best friend.’

(Media: dead tree already in my library // audio book 🎧)
VERDICT: ★★★★.★

5). Read any book of your choice.

Rosie Swale Pope – Just a Little Run Around the World: 5 Years, 3 Packs of Wolves and 53 Pairs of Shoes
After her husband died of cancer, 57-year-old Rosie set off to run around the world, raising money in memory of the man she loved. Followed by wolves, knocked down by a bus, confronted by bears, chased by a naked man with a gun and stranded with severe frostbite, Rosie’s breathtaking 20,000-mile solo journey is as gripping as it is inspiring.
Rosie’s solo run around the world started out of sorrow and heartache and a wish to turn something around.
Heartbroken when she lost her husband to cancer, Rosie set off from Wales with nothing but a small backpack of food and equipment, and funded by the rent from her little cottage. So began her epic 5-year journey that would take her 20,000 miles around the world, crossing Europe, Russia, Asia, Alaska, North America, Greenland, Iceland, and back into the UK.
On a good day she’d run 30 miles, on a bad day she’d only manage 500 yards, digging herself out of the snow at -62 degrees C, moving her cart inches at a time. Every inch, every mile, was a triumph, a celebration of life, and 53 pairs of shoes later Rosie arrived home to jubilant crowds in Tenby, Wales.
Rosie’s incredible story is a mesmerizing page-turner of the run of her life. It will wake up the sleeping adventurer in you; it will inspire hope, courage and determination in you; but most of all it will convince you to live your life to the full and make every day count.

(Media: dead tree already in my library)


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