Try Something New: BookDare, a Kidlit Reading Challenge

Do you enjoy reading kidlit? If the answer is yes, then you’re in the right spot. Welcome to the first ever Kidlit BookDare!

I Dare You

So, what exactly is the Kidlit BookDare?

I’m glad you asked. Kidlit BookDare is a monthly reading challenge. Each month there will be 4 book themes. You get to pick any Kidlit book you want to read as long as it fits the theme. Track your reading and discuss your books with others in the comments below or on twitter with the #BookDare hashtag. If you read a book for all 4 themes, post your 4 titles in the comments, and you get entered in that month’s giveaway. Oh, and there are 4 bonus themes. Each bonus theme you read a book for gets you one additional entry into the giveaway.

OK. Here’s the simple version:

  1. Visit the blog each month for the 4 themes
  2. Read a book for each theme
  3. Talk about your books in the comments or on twitter
  4. Get entered to win the prize
  5. Read a bonus book or 4
  6. Post your bonus titles for additional entries
  7. Read more books

Pretty simple, huh? When does it start? Right now!

July’s Themes

Here are the four themes for July. You can read any type (e.g., Picture Book, Middle Grade, Graphic Novel, etc.) of kidlit book you want for each theme. This month’s prize will be an autographed copy of Warning: Do Not Open This Book!

  1. July is beach season here on the east coast. Read a book about the beach or the ocean
  2. Here comes the 4th. Read a book with a Red, White, or Blue cover.
  3. It’s summertime, go outside. Read a book that features an adventure or trip.
  4. July is National Parks month. Read a book the features nature or animals.

And here are your July bonus themes:

  1. It’s hot. Read a book that reminds you of cold or winter.
  2. July 1st is International Joke day. Read a book that makes you laugh.
  3. July 28th is Parents Day. Read a book that includes parents.
  4. Read a book that released in 2013.

Well, there they are. Happy reading.


  1. Julee Murphy on July 3, 2013 at 11:27 am

    My July beach book is “Bats at the Beach” which is a great read aloud for talking about libraries. I have also met my 2013/Parent #bookdare “Because I’m Your Dad” by Ahmet Zappa and Dan Santat. I will read an extra one in case you can’t count 1 book for 2 bonus challenges.

    Thanks for this fun, themed reading challenge. I rise to met goals when challenged. Whoo Hoo!

  2. Tammy Langeberg on July 3, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    Harry by the Sea by Gene Zion has two themes! Ocean and adventure. Harry goes to the sea with his family. All he wants is to find some shade but is mistaken for a sea monster! Love the pictures of Harry covered with seaweed.

  3. Stephanie Bader on July 3, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    I am starting See You at Harry’s by Jo Knowles. It has a pretty blue cover. I’m glad I stumbled upon this challenge on Twitter. I think it would be fun to take a version of it to the classroom!

    • Julee Murphy on July 4, 2013 at 10:29 am

      Stephanie, “See You at Harry’s” is wonderful. My students love to book talk it to me and try to explain how sad it made them feel. I have taken to using the quote “All will be well”. A good book to pair with SY@Harrys is “One for the Murphy’s”

      • Stephanie Bader on July 4, 2013 at 10:54 am

        One for the Murphys is definitely a favorite. I am bringing that to my 6th graders this coming year!

  4. Vicky Van on July 4, 2013 at 9:46 am

    I accept the challenge!
    I read Stick by A. Smith. This book had parents.
    I also read A World Away which involved an Amish girl taking a trip away from her family. Good book. This was by Nancy Grossman.

  5. Vicky on July 5, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    More books to add for the DARE!! Read Bats at the Beach by Brian Lies for the beach read.
    Read Crankee Doodle by Tom Angleberger and CeCe Bell for the Red, White ,and Blue cover.

  6. Vicky Van on July 7, 2013 at 8:53 am

    Read The Runaway King for book release in 2013.

  7. Caroline on July 8, 2013 at 9:00 am

    I love this Book Dare challenge! Thanks for inviting all of us to join.

    We’re reading away!

    Beach/Ocean book – “Wow! Ocean!” by Robert Neubecker.
    Book with a blue cover – “Traffic Pups” by Michelle Meadows
    Adventure book – “Library Mouse” by Daniel Kirk (Fun twist near the end!)
    Nature book – “I See Patterns” by Susan Ring (An early reader my boy loved looking through.)

    I’ve shared some quick thoughts on each book on Twitter. I’ll add books for the additional themes later! Fun!

    (By the way, do you want separate comments for each book, or all the titles we read in one comment? Thanks!)

  8. […] to find some new #kidlit (kid literature) books? Picture book author Adam Lehrhaupt is hosting a “Book Dare” challenge on his blog where he gives a few themes a month, and you can pick any kidlit that fits those themes. […]

  9. […] can’t give it ALL away (you’ll have to visit his post to see all the themes!) but I’ll tell you the two themes I’ve already checked off my […]

  10. Vicky Van on July 17, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    Read Hug a Bull by A. Zenz for my animal bk and read The Bear in Long Underwear by T. Doodler for a laugh.

  11. Kathy Ellen Davis on July 21, 2013 at 11:12 pm

    Challenge accepted and done!
    I posted a blog post with all my reads at

    but I’ll list them here too:

    Ocean: The Fantastic Undersea life of Jacques Cousteau, by Dan Yaccarino
    Red Cover: Hippopposites by Janik Coat
    Adventure/Trip: Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour, by Morgan Matson
    Nature/Animals: I say you say: Animal sounds by Tad Carpenter

    Reminds me of cold: One cool friend by Toni Buzzeo, pictures by David Small
    Funny Book: Count the Monkeys by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Kevin Cornell
    Book w/parents: When a Dad says, “I love you” by Douglas Wood, illustrated by Jennifer A. Bell
    Released in 2013: The Day the Crayons quit by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

    Thanks for this fun challenge! Excited to see what August brings!

    • Adam on July 22, 2013 at 11:44 am

      Woohooo! Nice work. Love the blog post too. Thanks for participating and good luck in the prize drawing.

  12. […] are the challenges for July, taken straight from Adam’s blogpost. Check back there to play next […]

  13. Vicky Van on July 24, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Read The Dogs of Winter by Bobbie Pyron. Great book and based on some interesting facts about Russian homeless children and wild dogs.
    I think I have completed the DARE!!

  14. Joanne Roberts on July 24, 2013 at 2:13 pm

    This was a blast. I entered all my books on twitter today. I’m a list-maker and get off on anticipation, so rearranging my “To read stack” in order to fit the categories was one of the best parts. Thanks! See you next month.

    • Adam on July 24, 2013 at 3:35 pm

      I’m so glad you participated, and enjoyed, the challenge. There are some great books in your list. Good luck in the drawing.

  15. Margie Culver on July 26, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    Hello Adam:
    I love this challenge! Here goes with my list:
    Beach or Ocean: Pig Kahuna by Jennifer Sattler(a re-read but I love it so much)
    Red, White or Blue: Red Kite, Blue Kite by Ji-li Jiang with illustrations by Greg Ruth
    Adventure or trip: Wake Up Missing by Kate Messner (gripping science fiction for middle grades. I think your older guy might like it.)
    Nature or animals: Ol’ Mama Squirrel by David Ezra Stein
    Cold or winter: The Reader by Amy Hest with illustrations by Lauren Castillo (a re-read)
    Laughter: What Floats In A Moat? by Lynne Berry with illustrations by Matthew Cordell
    Parents: The Pet Project by Lisa Wheeler with illustrations by Zachariah OHora
    2013 release date: Brush of the Gods by Lenore Look with illustrations by Meilo So

    If re-reads do not count just say the word. I’m planning a library visit real soon. Anxious to see what you’ve cooked up for next month.

    • Adam on July 28, 2013 at 7:54 pm

      YAY! So glad you joined us Margie. Love the list of books. I’m putting Wake Up Missing on my library list now. I think re-reads are perfectly acceptable. Books should be read. We should not punish them just because we’ve read them before.

  16. Caroline on July 30, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    Back to finish the bonus themes for this month!

    Cold/winter book – “One Snowy Day” by Jeffery Scherer (a new-to-us early reader)
    A book that makes us laugh – “Ribbit!” by Rodrigo Folgueira (My oldest loves this one.)
    A book with parents – “Boy + Bot” by Ame Dyckman. The parents make a brief show in this book, so I hope that’s okay. This book is a REGULAR re-read for us! (We LOVE it.)
    A book released in 2013 – “The Day The Crayons Quit” by Drew Daywalt (I saw someone else read this one, too! I’ve heard a good bit about it and finally got my hands on a copy last week.)

    I shared a little bit about each book on Twitter, too!

    This challenge was so fun! And we introduced ourselves to some new (to us) books. Looking forward to next month.

  17. Tammy Langeberg on July 31, 2013 at 11:15 am

    This was such fun! i am stealing your idea to do with students at my school. Here is my list:
    Harry By The Sea (ocean)
    Doll Bones (adventure)
    Navigating Early (nature and animals)
    Cranky Doodle (red, white, and blue)

    Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library (published 2013)
    Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great (made me laugh…a lot)

    • Adam on July 31, 2013 at 9:51 pm

      That’s awesome. Please feel free to steal the Dares and make them your own. The whole point is to get out and read, read, read. New Dares go up tomorrow!

  18. Liz Wong on July 31, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    Nothing like waiting until the last day of July to participate! Here’s my reads:

    The Ocean: Down, Down, Down by Steve Jenkins
    Red White and Blue Cover: The Monstore by Tara Lazar and James Burks
    Adventure/Trip: The Red Book by Barbara Lehman (and talk about a red cover!)
    Animals: The Stray Dog by Marc Simont
    Cold: The Top of the World: Climbing Mount Everest by Steve Jenkins
    Funny: Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great by Bob Shea
    Parents: The Runaway Wok by Ying Chang Compestine and Sebastia Serra
    Released in 2013: Water in the Park by Emily Jenkins and Stephanie Graegin

    • Adam on July 31, 2013 at 9:50 pm

      Love that you joined Liz. Keep you eyes peeled. The new BookDare comes out tomorrow!

  19. Melissa Guerrette on July 31, 2013 at 11:13 pm

    Here I was posting all my bookdares to Twitter and never submitted anything here! (Do we need to do both?!)

    Beach: When the Butterflies Came, Kimberley Griffiths Little
    Red/white/blue Cover: The Day the Crayons Quit, Drew Daywalt & Oliver Jeffers
    Adventure/trip: North of Nowhere, Liz Kessler
    Nature/animals: Giant Squid, Mary Cerullo
    Cold/winter: Over and Under the Snow, Kate Messner
    Funny: A Hero’s Guide to Saving the Kingdom, Christopher Healy
    Parents: After Iris. Natasha Farrant
    2013: Rump, Liesl Shurtliff

    • Adam on August 1, 2013 at 8:09 pm

      Hi Melissa:
      It makes it easier for me to pick a winner if you post in the comments here. Not to worry though, because I knew you had completed yours. 🙂

  20. KidLit BookDare August 2013 | Adam Lehrhaupt on August 1, 2013 at 9:06 am

    […] Just wow. I am blown away by the great response to the first ever KidLit BookDare reading challenge. Thank you to everyone who participated. That said, August is here, which means a […]

  21. Adam on August 2, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    Thank you to everyone who joined in the July BookDare. Our book winner for July is Liz Wong! Congrats to everyone who finished. I’m looking forward to seeing your August books.


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