Take The Uncorked 2020 Reading Challenge

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Are you looking for a 2020 Reading Challenge for book lovers and wanderlusters?

Take the Uncorked Reading Challenge with 12 categories – one for each month – with books to inspire travel and diverse, international reads.

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Join our 2020 Reading Challenge today!

Guys, I’ve crossed over to the Dark Side and got sucked into the reading challenge wormhole.

If you are unfamiliar with The Uncorked Librarian, I focus on diverse books to inspire travel with a love for indie authors and diverse, global reads.

I also sneak plenty of YA into my adult book lists, travel a lot, and drink my fair share of wine…

I could not think of a better way to kick off the New Year than with an Uncorked 2020 Reading Challenge. This is my first annual Reading Challenge.

I’d love for you to be a part of my new tradition.

This 2020 reading challenge is not about how many books you read. Nor will you have to read specific titles.

Instead, find 12 themes, one for each month, where you can read one book or 20. Or none. I am not judging if you miss a month or two.

The themes are based on my love for books, booze, and travel.

Each month, I will send out suggestions to my mailing list with book recommendations per theme as well as post ideas in our FB group, Uncorked Readers.

Choose from suggestions or pick your own reads.

Start reading as soon as the month begins or anytime during that month. If you want to skip that month, that’s OK too.

This 2020 Reading Challenge is that easy.

I’d love to know what books you are reading and if you are participating. Whenever you start or finish a book, please let me know on social media by using the hashtag: #UncorkedReading and tag @ theuncorkedlibrarian or @ theuncorklib for Twitter.

So, what do you say?! Are you all in with this 2020 Reading Challenge?! Cheers, and let’s get started!

Uncorked 2020 Reading Challenge

The Uncorked Librarian 2020 Reading ChallengePin

January: Book That Changes Your World Perspective

One of the best ways to grow and stay open is through powerful, life-changing books. What books inspire you to think about the world in a different way?

This could be books that make you cry, laugh, or help you decide to make small life improvements like going to the gym or cleaning out your closets.

Maybe there are authors that inspire you to travel or a cookbook that challenges your palate.

Grab more January 2020 reading ideas and share your thoughts here.

February: Book Set In Iceland

I never play favorites when it comes to travel. However, last year, Iceland in February literally and figuratively blew us away.

For the first time, I saw the Northern Lights, glaciers with playful seals, and nature which brought me to tears. Who knew mountains could turn navy blue with the sunset?!

OK, and maybe a $26 bowl of soup in Reykjavik.

With this trip, TUL decided to niche down after reading so many Icelandic novels. Burial Rites made the history of Iceland come alive for me.

From that moment on, I wanted my site to become a place that inspired and enhanced people’s travels.

Discover more February 2020 book ideas and share your thoughts here.

March: Mulan Retellings

In honor of the new live-action March 27, 2020, Mulan movie release, let’s read a popular Mulan retelling together.

I love this centuries-old fairy tale, and there are so many international stories that celebrate this Chinese legend.

You can find the March 2020 Book Discussion For Mulan here.

April: Indie Novel

TUL has a soft spot for indie authors and publishers. In fact, I cannot believe how some of us will never discover some of the best books written because they are indie.

Over the past year, I read many new books that were on no one’s radar. Some indie authors promote away, while others stay quiet with their masterpieces.

For Indie April and our 2020 reading challenge, I will pull together some of my absolute favorite indie titles. I know you’ll find a new favorite that you didn’t even know existed.

You can find the April 2020 Book Discussion For Indie Books here.

May: 50 State Book

In honor of our move to North Carolina, TUL started pumping out southern book lists. Throughout 2020, we’ll branch out to all of the US and North America.

Let’s start by reading a book set in one of the 50 states. I’ll have endless Reading Challenge 2020 suggestions for this one.

You can find the May 2020 Book Discussion for books set around America here.

June: Beach Book

What travel writer doesn’t love the islands and the beach for a little escapism now and again?

In honor of an American summer, I cannot wait to read books set on the islands, in warm destinations, and books perfect for the beach. I am getting vampire pale since we moved from FL to NC.

Participate in the June 2020 Reading Challenge here.

July: Book Set In Bucket List Or Upcoming Travel Destination

Are you a traveler too? Where are you headed in 2020? We are already planning our vacations now.

Why not read a book set in your next destination for the 2020 Reading Challenge?

If you cannot travel far this year, consider a staycation. But also, let’s read books that spark our wanderlust too.

Don’t miss the July 2020 Reading Challenge here.

August: Women In Translation

August is Women in Translation Month.

A few years ago, Meytal Radzinski deemed August a month to celebrate women writers in translation.

This initiative fights the underrepresentation of women’s work being translated from their native languages.

I’m super excited to take this one on as a Smithie and book blogger.

September: WW2 Books

Who doesn’t love reading books set during WWII?

With this 2020 Reading Challenge, try to find a lesser-known WWII book set where the history is lesser-known and more obscure.

You can bet that I’ll suggest Ruta Sepetys or even Denise Kiernan as September grows closer.

You may also find helpful titles on these new 2020 WW2 upcoming releases for January to June or want to check out a few Holocaust books for teens.

October: Creepy Classic

I love a good paranormal book in the fall. TUL has endless fall book lists showcasing all things spooky.

What 2020 Reading Challenge would be complete without trying a classic or two…how about a creepy classic?

Plus, I love a good debate about what classics are worthy of our time vs the duds.

November: Cookbook To Inspire New Meals

TUL has never written a cookbook list, but I think it is time. Do you ever travel somewhere and return home, wanting to recreate everything that you just ate? I do!

In honor of learning and growing abroad, let’s cook up something new. Plus, this Reading Challenge 2020 theme is perfect for Nonfiction November.

December: Hygge Book

Hygge is that Scandinavian – Danish and Norwegian – feeling for happiness and coziness.

We definitely understand this concept more while living in the Asheville mountains. Our winters are perfect with the fireplace, cozy blankets, cats on our lap, and a heartwarming novel.

Let’s embrace this international concept with books that warm the soul.

TUL Newsletter

Join our mailing list so that you never miss a 2020 Reading Challenge update. I typically send 2-3 emails a month. I will never spam you.

Take The Uncorked Reading Challenge!

Travel around the world with our Uncorked Reading Challenge. Never be late to the party with unique new book releases. Get the latest movie and book lists straight to your inbox.

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Are You Ready To Take The Uncorked 2020 Reading Challenge?

Please let me know below if you will join us this year and what you are reading. I’d love to hear from you.

Don’t forget to follow TUL on Goodreads, too.

All Reading Challenges:

2023 Uncorked Reading Book Challenge
2022 Reading Challenge
2021 Book Challenge

Christine Owner The Uncorked Librarian LLC with white brunette female in pink dress sitting in chair with glass of white wine and open bookPin
Christine Frascarelli

Christine (she/her) is the owner, lead editor, and tipsy book sommelier of The Uncorked Librarian LLC, an online literary publication showcasing books and movies to inspire travel and home to the famed Uncorked Reading Challenge.

With a BA in English & History from Smith College, an MLIS from USF-Tampa, and a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship in Christine's back pocket, there isn't a bookstore, library, or winery that can hide from her. Christine loves brewery yoga, adopting all of the kitties, and a glass of oaked Chardonnay. Charcuterie is her favorite food group.


  1. I love the idea of this challenge. I need low-key right now..no pressure!

    I’ve been wanting to read more books set in TX since we moved and you know I love WW2 fiction. I’ve been reading an ARC about Clementine Churchill and it’s so, so interesting. I love that it would fit multiple categories. I feel so ahead already LOL.

    I know it’s literally a year away, but I love December’s category. As a Danish family I love the concept of hygge but I get a little irritated at how commercialized it’s become in the US! It’s funny because my mom grew up using that word since I was little and now it’s a big thing. We sort of joke about it but I’m also happy that these customs are making their way over here and (hopefully) inspiring people to be happier. She’s a dual citizen of the US and Denmark and my sister and I always say that we’re going to apply for our citizenship and move there because they’re literally the happiest people. OKAY, that was a tangent… but I love this challenge and I’m totally in.

    1. I know how crazy your week was the family (I hope the weekend was much more chill).

      We are headed to Switzerland soon so I feel you about reading books set where you just moved. I gotta get on that.

      Haha, I’ve definitely heard that people have done studies showing that the Danish are much happier.

      In Amsterdam, we learned about “gezelligheid,” which is somewhat similar to hygge. I don’t think I’ve noticed the US commercializing the term as much, but now I’ll have to look for it–and it will probably be EVERYWHERE lol.

      I’m excited to showcase Iceland’s Book Flood, too, and dispel some memes. Partly, I think because so many more people are traveling these days, they are stoked to adopt international customs (hopefully without appropriating or tainting too much).

      We want to retire in Italy because we feel, overall, that Europe is a much more chill and happier place for us. Like you, we want double citizenship. Tom’s dad was born in Sicily. We can swap places in Europe and travel together when we move there ; )

      I’m so excited that you are joining in on the reading challenge. Low-key is what we all need. Have a great holiday!

  2. I love this Christine!!!! Not sure, that I’ll be able to take part each and every month, but I totally want to jump in whenever possible. These categories are amazing, & they fit the month so well. Hygge for December?? Cuisine for November?? July & travel??? Perfect. You’re so creative, and I’m amazed that you came up with this fantastic idea that’s thought out so well 🙂 <3

    1. Thanks so much, Macey. I saw online that you are cruising through the last of the semester and finals. YAY! That’s the best time of the year. I’m so glad that you love these themes. I had SO MANY ideas that I think I already have my 2021 Challenge determined. AHAHA. Also, for February’s Icelandic Challenge, I have a BIG announcement to make that I think you WILL LOVE. I’m going to plan something BOOKISHLY amazing for December…

  3. Aww this is such a great idea! Love the categories!! It’s actually one of my 2020 goals to read more books beyond ones set in NYC. I’m really hoping that switching things up with my blog will help in that effort. My next NYC read might be historical fiction but not WWII. I wouldn’t mind reading another one of those books though. They are always gut wrenching. Our Christmas movie this year might be 1917. That looks gut wrenching!
    Anyway, these categories are cool! I’m definitely due for a book to change my world perspective. Can’t wait for your suggestions for that one. I might be reading two more romcoms, then my historical fiction maybe and then I’ll change my world perspective. Oh I also need to read The Starlet and the Spy. Maybe that fits in that category??

    Love this! I will definitely participate when I can!?

    1. I love your NYC dates, and I can’t wait to see where you explore outside of the city. Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. And you are so right: WWII fiction can be pretty gut-wrenching.

      I just looked up The Starlet and the Spy. That looks amazing, and YES, I totally think that title works, too. I’ll have to add Starlet… to my TBR.

      I just started Cork Dork last night, and I am in awe. The story is also bringing me back to my [nightmare] retail days as Bosker starts out as a “cellar rat” stocking the wine. *Shiver* I remember the horrors of making so many mistakes (but in a different field). I knew that the world of sommeliers was pretty intense–we met a full-blown Master Sommelier in Florida–but the book is eye-opening to the world of wine.

      Participate whenever you can. I’m sure plenty of people will dip in and out–because LIFE! I’m excited to have you along. XXXxx

  4. Love these categories! Also I’m looking forward to seeing the contributors picks since you always have such a wide range of bloggers and bookstagrammers giving their input! Thankfully this challenge seems nice and relaxed so it might actually be doable for me! I’m most looking forward to the Mulan retellings. I definitely did not know that was a thing, but it’s an amazing Disney movie so I’m sure it will inspire some fascinating reads.

    1. Hey! Thank you so much! I’m definitely hoping to have a few more upcoming contributor lists soon. I need to put the call out there ASAP. I felt a little bad after Tennessee novels took me longer than expected. I had never asked for contributors for THREE book lists at the same time. It was fabulous for content but not for my organization skills. LOL!

      I’m glad that you feel like this challenge is pretty mellow. That was fully my intent since I’m super busy and juggling like everyone these days. I love the book a week reading challenges, but I think I’d stress myself out trying to keep up; there is just no way, right now. And, I’d feel like a failure by February, ahaha. I’ll leave those for the reading pros.

      My plan is to put out monthly ideas in a blog post for each category before the month starts. I’ll try to give new related reads, book lists from everyone and TUL, and discuss what I’m reading too. Of course, I’ll add some old favorites on that post. I’m hoping those posts can be more like a forum and conversation for everyone to share what they are reading. It will be like a super INFORMAL book club where we are all reading different books.

      There are so many Mulan retellings! I have a list up now–but I know that I need to track down more.

      Thanks for participating with me. XXxx

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