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The Panels 2016 Read Harder Challenge

Rachel Manwill

Staff Writer

Rachel Manwill is an editor, writer, and professional nomad. Twice a year, she runs the #24in48 readathon, during which she does almost no reading. She's always looking for an excuse to recommend a book, whether you ask her for one or not. When she's not ranting about comma usage for her day job as a corporate editor, she's usually got an audiobook in her ears and a puppy in her lap. Blog: A Home Between Pages Twitter: @rachelmanwill

We here at Panels are taking some much needed time off; in the meantime, we’re revisiting some favorite old posts from the last 6 months! We’ll see you back on January 11 with all new posts for your enjoyment.

This post originally ran on December 15, 2015.
It’s here! The 2016 Panels Read Harder Challenge! Last year, we launched the Read Harder Challenge, both here at Panels and over on our sister site, Book Riot. It was the first time we’d done such a thing and we got so much great feedback that we decided that another round was in order.

The Read Harder Challenge is designed to help you expand your reading horizons and encourage you to discover comics beyond your comfort zone, whether that applies to subject, format, publisher, style, genre or creator. You never know when something you didn’t expect to ever pick up turns out to be your new favorite thing.

We’ve got 18 tasks this year, each one of which will hopefully introduce you to a genre or character or art style that you hadn’t explored before. We’ll be posting suggestions throughout the year to help you fulfill these tasks, and I’ve included links in the list below to relevant resources* to help you get a jump start. And if you’ve got a recommendation of your own, please let us know in the comments.

Good luck and happy reading!

Read a self-published comic.

Read a feminist comic.

Read a comic featuring one or more teenage protagonists.

Read a superhero comic whose race or gender has been swapped from the original or traditional hero.

Read a complete run of a comic.

Read a comic based on a book and the book it’s based on.

Read a graphic biography.

Read a comic that was originally published in a language different from your own.

Read a comic set in space.

Read a collected webcomic.

Read a comic with at least one creator of color.

Read a comic set in Asia by an Asian creator.

Read a superhero comic NOT by one of the Big Two.

Read a slice-of-life comic not set in the U.S.

Read a comic that has been adapted from a T.V. show or movie (not vice versa).

Read a comic about a real-life historical event.

Read a black-and-white comic.

Read a watercolor comic.

(Don’t worry – these last two will be the first up on our features to help you explore more).

*Goodreads lists are user-created and the books on them may not fit the challenge requirements. Double check any book you’re using, just to make sure.