My GIANT October 2021 TBR | can I complete two readathons?!

It’s October! The season of cosiness, autumn, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and plenty of Gothic, spooky books.

This month, I am actually posting a to be read/possibility list, because I want to participate in two readathons, and therefore there are lots of books I want to complete. So far, I’ve read two books in October (though none are on my TBR…), so I’m already doing quite well I think!

Readathon #1: Victober

I’ve always wanted to participate in Victober, but this is the first time I’ve actually made a plan to do so. Victober is run by LucyTheReader on YouTube and Instagram, and it’s all about reading Victorian literature during the month of October. There are some reading challenges to complete, a group book, and a non-reading challenge for the month.

The challenges are…

Read a Victorian sensation novel – for this one, I have chosen Lady Audley’s Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon, which has been a book on my list for a couple of months, so it’s quite new to me. A sensation novel draws on the Gothic and romance genres, ideas of identity and the loss of identity, and were very popular at the time.

Read a Victorian book set in the countryside and/or the city – I have chosen Dracula by Bram Stoker for this prompt. The setting ranges from Transylvania to the countryside of England, and I’m very excited to read it because it’s also perfect for October! I can also use The Merry Men and Other Stories by Robert Louis Stevenson for this prompt, as I want to read it for my second readathon too!

Read a Victorian book with a female main character – I want to read The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte for this prompt, which is one that I have got about 75% of the way through before, really enjoyed it, but never finished it!

Group challenge → Read a popular Victorian book you haven’t yet read – I’m thinking Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte which, again, I’ve got most of the way through and haven’t finished! It’s also quite short, so perfect for a readathon!

Bonus challenge → Read aloud a section of a Victorian work, or have it read aloud to you (ie, by a friend or an audiobook!) – this is a non-reading challenge, and I’ll be posting mine on my Instagram or listening to an audiobook!

Group read → Gothic Tales by Elizabeth Gaskell. This one seems super interesting, and my lovely boyfriend bought it for me as it was in my Amazon basket! I love the Gothic genre, so I’m hopeful I will enjoy this one.

Readathon #2: ThrillerOctober V3

ThrillerOctober V3 is the third round of “ThrillerOctober”, and readathon where you read, you guessed it, thrillers! This one is run by ReadWithAngie on Instagram, and is very much an Instagram-based readathon as to complete it, you have to complete challenges on the platform.

The challenges are…

Read any thriller – obviously this challenge is so open! I think I could read any of the books I have on my Victober TBR for this challenge, so I don’t have an individual book for this one.

Read a thriller with red on the cover – for this challenge, I’d love to read The Silent Suspect by Nell Pattinson, which is the third in a series of books I am loving. I raced through the other two, so looking forward to this one!

Read a witchy book – I’m wondering if Elizabeth Gaskell’s book could work for this challenge, but if not, I also have The Sisters Grimm by Menna van Pragg, which looks super interesting.

Read a ghost/haunted story – for this challenge I am reading The Merry Men and Other Stories by Robert Louis Stevenson. I want to read this for school as it’s in our anthology that includes Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, the GCSE text I am teaching this term.

Read a thriller by a BIPOC author – this challenge was hard for me, and that’s really encouraged me to look at my shelves more! I don’t really look up authors before I read books at all, but I should be being more aware. It’s also made me very aware of how much Amazon and bookshops continue to push white authors above BIPOC authors! Anyway, I have The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead, which Google says is counted in the thriller genre!

Share a picture of your Hallowe’en costume! – no idea what or who I’ll dress up as this year, but it’s an exciting challenge!

Overall that leaves potentially 10 books on my TBR, which used to be manageable once! However, last month, I only read 3 books, and the most books I’ve read in a month so far this year is 11. Still, I’m going to give it a try!

Luckily, some of these challenges can double up between readathons – I think quite a lot of the Victober choices double up as thrillers, or ghostly stories, as many of them are Gothic as that’s my favourite Victorian genre.

If you want to stay up-to-date with how I get on with this enormous TBR, follow me on Instagram! I’ll be posting all my updates on there.

Are any of these books on your to be read pile? Or have you read any of them so far? I’d love to know!

Until the next time,



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