Reading Challenge
If you’re looking for a bit more structure for your Sirens reading, or you simply love a challenge, you’re in the right place. Each year, our staff reads a wide selection of fantasy works written by women and nonbinary authors, some within our theme and some more broadly. This year, we invite you to take our challenge!

To take the challenge, simply read 26 books, in accordance with the rules below, by October 1, 2018. Once you’ve finished, send an email to (help at sirensconference.org) with Reading List Challenge as the subject line, and let us know that you’ve finished the challenge and the books that you read to do so. We’ll give all timely finishers a special button at Sirens, suitable for gloating.

If you’re looking for a little support, we invite you to visit the Sirens Goodreads group, where, in 2018, Sirens communications director Faye Bi will read and discuss books on her way to—maybe—finishing the challenge.

To purchase these books, please consider using the links below, which will take you to the website of the Tattered Cover, Denver’s renowned independent bookstore. If you use those links and then purchase books or other items, Sirens will receive a referral fee from the Tattered Cover.


Sirens 2018 Reading Challenge

In each required category, you must read—or have previously read—each work listed. In each category of selections, you must select books by authors who are new to you. If you cannot reach the required number of selections without selecting authors you have already read, you may select works you haven’t read by authors you have read before. If you cannot reach the required number of selections without selecting books you’ve read, bravo, and please read as many new-to-you books as you can to complete the challenge.


Guests of Honor: Required

Leigh Bardugo

Zen Cho
Spirits Abroad

Kameron Hurley

Anna-Marie McLemore



Hauntings Books: Select Three

Violet Kupersmith

Jennifer Mason-Black

Judith Claire Mitchell

Emily Bain Murphy

Helen Oyeyemi

Nova Ren Suma

Kali Wallace

Jesmyn Ward



Revolutionaries Books: Select Three

Kelly Sue DeConnick & Valentine De Landro

Lara Elena Donnelly

Kate Elliott

Christine Heppermann

Ausma Zehanat Khan

Nisi Shawl

Sabaa Tahir

Lidia Yuknavitch



Lovers Books: Select Three

Jacqueline Carey

Roshani Chokshi

Isabel Greenberg

Heidi Heilig

S. Jae-Jones

Ellen Klages

Sarah McCarry

Heather O’Neill



Women Who Work Magic Books: Select Three

Katherine Arden

S. A. Chakraborty

Rin Chupeco

Julie C. Dao

Kay Kenyon

Nnedi Okorafor

Sarah Porter

Mary Rickert



Middle Grade/Young Adult: Select Five

Melissa Bashardoust

Kendare Blake

Kristin Cashore

April Daniels

Lindsay Eagar

Zetta Elliott

Heather Fawcett

Moïra Fowley-Doyle

Stephanie Garber

Imani Josey

Aditi Khorana

Tricia Levenseller

Katherine Locke

Nilah Magruder

Lana Popović

Margaret Rogerson

Jordan Stratford & Kelly Murphy

Laini Taylor

Cat Winters

Ibi Zoboi



Adult: Select Five

Presented by Narrate Conferences, Inc.
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