Reading Challenge 2021

main image for Reading Challenge page

This year, Toronto Public Library invites you to read widely and discover new books, authors and genres. Read or listen to 12 books in 12 categories from January to December to complete the 2021 Reading Challenge.

Reading Challenge Form

Download the fillable, printable Reading Challenge form (PDF), or view the categories below.

Download the Form

If you've completed the Reading Challenge and want to enter the prize draw, fill out this online survey by the end of 2021.

How to Participate

  1. Read widely. Try books you wouldn’t normally read, in any format you like, and interpret the categories as broadly as you’d like.
  2. Track your reading. You can use the Borrowing History or Saved Lists features in Your Account, or any other method that works for you.
  3. Connect with other readers. Join the discussion on Facebook, or attend a Reading Challenge event.
  4. Win prizes. Share your booklist at the end of 2021 to be entered into a random draw for a prize pack.

The Challenge

Read or listen to 12 books in 12 categories in 12 months.

We'll be posting recommendations for each category over the course of the year in the order they're listed here:


The Advanced Challenge

Up for more? Read or listen to 14 more books to complete the Advanced Challenge.

* Two-Spirit refers to an Indigenous person who identifies as having both a masculine and a feminine spirit. To learn more, visit the Re:searching for 2SLGBTQ+ Health website.
BIPOC stands for Black, Indigenous and People of Colour.
Disability is understood as any physical, mental, developmental, cognitive, learning, communication, sight, hearing, or functional limitation that, in interaction with a barrier, hinders a person’s full and equal participation in society. To learn more, visit the City of Toronto's Disability Awareness & Inclusion website.
STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

Join the Facebook Group

Share reading recommendations with fellow readers.

Upcoming Events

All Reading Challenge Events

Past Reading Challenges

Want to take the Challenge from previous years? Download the forms or browse our recommended reading lists.


Prize draw rules

The draw is open to all individuals who have completed the 2021 Reading Challenge and have a valid TPL card or Digital Access Card. Complete the online entry form by 11:59 pm EST on Friday, December 31, 2021 to enter. Limit of one entry per person. On Monday, January 3, 2022, three individuals will be randomly selected to win a prize pack of books and library merchandise. A fourth winner will be drawn from those who have completed both the 2021 Reading Challenge and Advanced Challenge. Prize packs will be available for pickup at the winner’s choice of TPL branch. Winners will be required to answer a skill-testing question to claim their prize.


Who can participate in the Challenge and prize draw?

The Challenge is for anyone who is interested in reading more.

To be eligible for the prize draw, you will need to have a valid Toronto Public Library card or Digital Access Card and complete the Challenge (don’t have a card yet? Here’s how to get one). Those who complete the Advanced Challenge as well will be eligible for an additional draw.

You don't need to participate in the online discussion to be eligible for the prize draw. To enter the prize draw, fill out this online survey.

Do I have to read books from the library?

You can buy, borrow from friends, read from the library, raid your personal collection… any source of books is fair game.

Do I have to read books in English? Can I read books in French?
You can – in fact, you can read books in any language, not just English or French.
How should I track the books I’m reading?
There are several ways you can keep track of what you've read:
I prefer audiobooks. Do those count?
Absolutely. If you prefer your books in audio, you’re welcome to listen to books for the Challenge too.
I read a book that can fit into two of the categories on the Challenge. Can I use it for both?
Nice try, but each book can only be used for a single Challenge category.
My child is interested in the Challenge. Can they participate?
The Challenge is generally aimed at adults, but children and teens are welcome. They will also be able to enter the prize draw in 2021.
Where can I find recommendations for books to read?
You can find reading recommendations online, on our Books page, and in blog posts throughout the year.