Around the World in 80 Books

Duration: 1st December 2017 – 30th November 2018

Number of books: 80

Hosted by: My Vampire Book Obsession

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Strap on your best reading goggles and dive into Around the World in 80 Books! Our journey will take us to each continent and every ocean.

Don’t panic! We know 80 books is a bit much for some people, so we have 4 different modes of transportation to suit everyone’s reading speed.

Our journey will last one year travelling on either a bicycle (16 books), horse (32 books), locomotive (64 books), or airship (80 books).

The 7 continents are broken down to 3 countries each with 3 tasks per country plus one bonus task. So there are 10 tasks on each continent. The 5 oceans have two tasks each giving a total of 10.

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North America is home to nearly 565 million people. About 7.5 percent of the world’s population lives here. It is the third largest continent in the world by area and fourth largest continent by population.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Brazen by Kelley Armstrong


1. In Algonquian folklore, the wendigo or windigo is a cannibal monster or evil spirit native to the northern forests of the Atlantic Coast and Great Lakes Region of both the United States and Canada. The wendigo may appear as a monster with some characteristics of a human, or as a spirit who has possessed a human being and made them become monstrous.

Read a book with a werewolf. Bounty Hunt by Kelley Armstrong

2. Ogopogo or Naitaka is a mythical cryptid lake monster reported to live in Okanagan Lake, in British Columbia, Canada. Ogopogo has been allegedly seen by First Nations people since the 19th century. The most common description of Ogopogo is a 40 to 50-foot-long (12 to 15 m) sea serpent. Lake monster investigator Benjamin Radford notes “however, that these First Nations stories were not referring to a literal lake monster like Ogopogo, but instead to a legendary water spirit.

Read a book with a sea creature or water fae/spirit. Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs

3. The “Black Donnellys” were an Irish family who emigrated to Ontario. Five of the family were murdered by an armed mob in the township of Biddulph in February 1880 and their farm was burned down, the culmination of long-standing conflict between the family and other residents. No one was ever convicted of the murders, despite two inconclusive trials.

Read a book with a family conflict. Forsaken by Kelley Armstrong


1. In the Aztec religion, Huitzilopochtli, is a Mesoamerican deity of war, sun, human sacrifice and the patron of the city of Tenochtitlan. The people had to make sacrifices to him to protect the Aztec from infinite night. It is important to remember that the defeat of their patron deity meant the defeat of his people.

Read a book with an ancient God. Mastiff by Tamora Pierce

2. La Llorona (“The Weeping Woman”) is a legendary ghost prominent in the folklore of Mexican Culture. According to the tradition, La Llorona is the ghost of a woman who lost her children and cries while looking for them in the river, often causing misfortune to those who are near or hear her.

Read a book with ghosts. The Girl with the Windup Heart by Kady Cross

3. The Sun Stone or Stone of the Five Eras is a late post-classic Mexica sculpture housed in the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City, and is perhaps the most famous work of Aztec sculpture. Most scholars think that the stone was carved some time between 1502 and 1521, though some believe that it is several decades older than that.

Read a book with a character from the 1500’s or set during that period. Rejected Princesses by Jason Porath

United States 

1. The tall tale is a fundamental element of American folk literature. The tall tale’s origins are seen in the bragging contests that often occurred when men of the American frontier gathered. A tall tale is a story with unbelievable elements, related as if it were true and factual. Some such stories are exaggerations of actual events; others are completely fictional tales set in a familiar setting, such as the American Old West, or the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. They are usually humorous or good-natured.

Read a book you find humorous or far-fetched. The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett

2. Mothman is a mythical half moth half man from Point Pleasant, West Virginia described as a large humanoid with moth features on its face and large wings with fur covering its body. Mothman has been blamed for the collapse of the Silver Bridge.

Read a book with a character who can fly. The Demigod Diaries by Rick Riordan

3. John the Conqueror also known as High John the Conqueror, and many other folk variants, is a folk hero from African-American folklore. John the Conqueror was an African prince who was sold as a slave in the Americas. Despite his enslavement, his spirit was never broken and he survived in folklore as a sort of a trickster figure, because of the tricks he played to evade his masters. Joel Chandler Harris’s ‘Br’er Rabbit’ of the Uncle Remus stories is said to be patterned after High John the Conqueror.

Read a book with a character who is clever. The Valley of the Lost by Emily Rodda

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South America is the fourth largest continent in terms of size and fifth in terms of population. South America is a continent which is diverse in terms of geography and biodiversity.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Allegiance of Honour by Nalini Singh


1. The Bestial Beast is a Brazilian version of a centaur, originating in Portugal. According to legend, it is believed that it is the Devil who leaves hell during full-moon nights. It has the body of a horse and a human torso. It runs through villages until it finds a tomb, where it disappears. The sound of its hooves is enough to terrorise people. A pack of dogs follow it; the Beast whips these, and any other animals it comes across.

Read a book with demons. Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs

2. The Coco is a mythical ghost-monster, equivalent to the bogeyman, found in many Hispanic and Lusophone countries. There is no general description of the Coco, as far as facial or body descriptions, but it is stated that this shapeshifting being is extremely horrible to look at. The coco is variously described as a shapeless figure, sometimes a hairy monster, that hides in closets or under beds and eats children that misbehave when they are told to go to bed.

Read a book with shapeshifters. Otherworld Secrets by Kelley Armstrong

3. The Sack Man is a figure similar to the bogeyman, portrayed as a man with a sack on his back who carries naughty children away. In Brazil, o homem do saco is portrayed as an adult male, usually in the form of a vagrant, who carries a sack on his back, and collects mean disobedient children to sell.

Read a book with an unruly child or where a child gets kidnapped. – The Wild Adventure of Jasper Renn by Kady Cross


1. El Tunchi is one of the spirits that protects the rainforest, and more specifically it is said to be the spirit of people that took their last breath inside the rainforest. The technique of El Tunchi is to whistle a certain tune, always the same short melody, and if you chime in by whistling the exact same tune, the spirit will appear, its wrath will fall upon you and terrorize you.

Read a book set in a forest or with trees on the cover. Otherworld Chills by Kelley Armstrong

2. Men worked in the Amazon forest for weeks on end, surrounded by nothing but dense forest and male colleagues. One can imagine their longing for little female contact. Many have reported that they saw beautiful women singing to them from the opposite shore, trying to lure them to the other side of the river. Some couldn’t resist and drowned in the river’s swift currents.

Read a book with a female villain. Dangerously Charming by Deborah Blake

3. Pink river dolphins are found only in the Amazon. Bufeo Colorado is a pink dolphin who shape-shifts into an attractive fisherman. He uses his charm to lure girls away and convince them to have sex with him. Apparently, Bufeo is relentless and shows up night after night—until he gets his way or is exposed. The only way to break his power is to fool him into running out the doorway of a high, stilted house, which will cause him to fall to the ground and transform back into a dolphin.

Read a book with an “alpha male” or a man who won’t take no for an answer. The Dark Discovery of Jack Dandy by Kady Cross


1. It is said that the famous English sailor Sir Francis Drake buried amazing jewels and treasures all along the coast of what is now the Region of Valparaíso. In 1578, Drake was the first European to find Guayacán Bay, and it became a popular refuges for pirates who plundered the Spanish galleons. Legend says that many people have searched for the treasures in Guayacán, and that all of them have died.

Read a book with pirates or a treasure hunt. Percy Jackson and the Greek Heroes by Rick Riordan

2. On an island with many myths, one of the most enduring legends is the fishermen’s tale of the mermaid, La Pincoya. he is a beautiful woman, with fair skin, golden hair, and the tail of a fish from the waist down. On certain nights, she whistles or sings irresistibly haunting love songs.

Read a book with a mermaid or a character has blond hair. The Girl with the Iron Touch by Kady Cross

3. The story is told in Rapa Nui that when there was nothing on the earth and everything had yet to be done, an argument arose among the spirits. A powerful spirit who lived in the air imposed his will on the weaker spirits, who wanted to start a rebellion. The powerful one transformed them into mountains and volcanoes. Those who repented, he turned into stars.

Read a book where someone is punished or transformed. Return to Del by Emily Rodda

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Europe is the second smallest continent in the world. It comprises the westernmost peninsula of the giant Eurasian landmass. Covering almost 2 percent of the earth’s surface Europe takes 6.8 percent of the world’s total land area.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Driven by Kelley Armstrong


1. The Banshee was a woman who carried with her an omen of death. Sometimes you saw the Banshee as an old woman dressed in rags, sometimes you saw her as a young and beautiful girl and sometimes you saw her as a wash woman, ringing out bloody clothing. Whenever she was seen, she let out a horrible cry and legend has it this cry brought death to any family that heard it.

Read a book where someone’s death is foretold. Mort by Terry Pratchett

2. The story of the Children of Lir comes from the Irish Mythological Cycle. Lir was the lord of the sea. He had a wife and four children. When Lir’s wife died, he married his wife’s sister, Aoife. Aoife was jealous of Lir’s children and wanted to be rid of them. One day Aoife took the children to a lake. While they were swimming she performed a spell on them and turned them into swans.

Read a book with shapeshifting birds or a jealous character. River Marked by Patricia Briggs

3. Faeries exist in some form in mythology all over the world but hold a special importance to the Irish. The fairy society in Ireland is thought to be very much alive, and far from Peter Pan’s Tinker Bell. An Irish fairy can take any form she wishes, but will usually choose a human form. They are said to be beautiful, powerful and hard to resist, which is unfortunate because most fairies in Ireland love to bring misfortune and bad luck to the mortals who come near them.

Read a book with any type of Fae. Wickedly Spirited by Deborah Blake


1. The Rosstrappe is a craggy hill in the Harz mountain range, central Germany. Those who make it to the very top can see a hoof print in the rock on cliff edge and legend has it that this is where princess Brunhilde escaped from a giant, Bodo, who wanted to marry her. He chased her to the cliff edge, where her white stallion jumped across and reached the other side, while Bodo jumped after her and plunged to his death.

Read a book with a giant or where a character is on the run. Bone Crossed by Patricia Briggs

2. In deepest southern Bavaria, blood-thirsty King Watzmann once ruled with an iron fist. The story says that the king and his family enjoyed hunting local peasants, until one day when, after having slaughtered an entire family, a curse was set upon them. The whole family were turned to stone and are thought to be entombed in a range of seven mountains in Berchtesgaden, each hill a different member.

Read a book with a megalomaniac. The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett

3. The classic Pied Piper tale can be traced back to an unfortunate event in the Middle Ages, in a small town of Hameln, Lower Saxony, where masses of children disappeared at the same time. No one quite knows where they went, but legend has it that a rat catcher lured them all away after the mayor refused to pay him…

Read a book with a male villain. The Girl in the Clockwork Collar by Kady Cross


1. A moroi is a type of vampire or ghost in Romanian folklore. In some versions, a moroi is a phantom of a dead person which leaves the grave to draw energy from the living.

Read a book with vampires. Blood Lite III: Aftertaste edited by Kevin J. Anderson

2. A balaur is a creature in Romanian folklore, similar to a European dragon. A balaur is quite large, has fins, feet, and is polycephalous (it usually has three, sometimes seven, or even twelve serpent heads). As a traditional character which is found in most Romanian fairy tales, it represents Evil and must be defeated by Făt-Frumos in order to release the princess. It is also believed, in Wallachia that the saliva of a balaur can form precious stones.

Read a book with a dragon or a creature with multiple heads. – The Wrath of Mulgarath by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black

3. A Pricolici is a werewolf/vampire fusion in the Romanian folklore. Pricolici, similar to strigoi, are undead souls that have risen from the grave to harm living people. While a strigoi possesses anthropomorphic qualities similar to the ones it had before death, a pricolici always resembles a wolf. Malicious, violent men are often said to become pricolici after death, in order to continue harming other humans.

Read a book with a werewolf-vampire hybrid.

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Africa is the second largest continent in the world. It is also the second largest continent in the world in terms of population. This large land mass comprises of 54 countries and is home to one billion people.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Cress by Marissa Meyer


1. Bomazi is the ancestor-god in the mythology of the Bushongo people of the Congo River area. He was a light-skinned man who came from heaven and appeared to an elderly childless couple, telling them that they would have a daughter. They indeed had a daughter, and when she grew up, Bomazi married her. Their five sons became the chiefs of the five Bushongo tribes.

Read a book with someone descended from a god. Dangerously Divine by Deborah Blake

2. Mbuti mythology is the mythology of the African Mbuti Pygmies of Congo. The most important god of the Bambuti pantheon is Khonvoum, a god of the hunt who wields a bow made from two snakes that together appear to humans as a rainbow. He rules the heavens and when the sun sets, he gathers pieces of the stars and throws it at the sun so that it may rise the next day in its full splendor.

Read a book where the characters go hunting or with snakes.. Fair Game by Patricia Briggs

3. The Adroanzi were nature gods of specific rivers, trees and other sacred wild areas. At night, they followed people and protected them from animals and bandits as long as they did not look over their shoulder to ensure that an Adroanzi was following; if the person did so, the Adroanzi promptly killed him or her. The people they killed, they ate. They were also sometimes known as water snakes.

Read a book where a character has a protector. . The Sending by Isobelle Carmody


1. In Efik mythology, Abassi is considered to be the Supreme Creator. It was believed that Abassi gave certain tribesmen the ability to heal the sick through necromancy. Necromancy is the practice of magic involving communication with the deceased – either by summoning their spirit as an apparition or raising them bodily.

Read a book with a necromancer or a zombie.. Kisses and Curses edited by Lauren Burniac

2. In some parts of Nigeria, you must not whistle at night, because you will wake the dead. They will whistle back at you and just may escort you back to their graves, its not a matter of question, they WILL take you.

Read a book where someone is ambushed.. – A Company of Swans by Eva Ibbotson 

3. A lot of Nigerians believe that witches hold meeting every night, planning how to ruin the lives of others and when they’re done with their nightly meetings they fly around for sometime, carrying out some evil acts, like murder and stealing of properties.

Read a book with witches.. Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett


1. RAFARA – The Merina goddess of motherly love and devotion. She had been forced into a marriage to an ogre and had borne him a daughter named Indesoka.

Read a book with a mother and children.. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

2. ANDRIANAMPOINIMERINA – A past King of the Merina people and the Demi-God who ruled over the birds called crows. From the time Andrianampoinimerina was a small child crows were his special protectors and always kept a watchful eye on him.

Read a book with a bird on the cover.. The Heart is a Burial Ground by Tamara Colchester

3. BABAKOTO – The Merina lemur god. Babakoto was at first an ordinary man. Through a series of misfortunes he wound up being accused and condemned to death for a crime he did not commit. Nobody would believe his innocence, however, and so he began plotting to escape before his execution could be carried out.

Read a book where someone is falsely accused of something. The Field Guide by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black

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Asia is the largest continent on earth covering about 9 percent of the earth’s surface. It is also the most populated continent on earth, home to an estimated population of around 4.3 billion people.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh


1. The Chinese dragon is one of the most important mythical creatures in Chinese mythology, considered to be the most powerful and divine creature as well as controller of all waters. They were believed to be able to create clouds with their breath. The dragon symbolized great power and was very supportive of heroes and gods.

Read a book with dragons. Dragon’s Breath by E.D. Baker

2. A central quest within Taoist practices is the search for immortality – literal, physical immortality. The sense of an interplay between natural law and the abstract laws prevailing in the cosmos, is held in common by shamanism and Taoism. Taoism searched for balance within these forces and enshrined the concept that change cannot be forced, only experienced and assimilated.

Read a book with an immortal character. Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce

3. Buddhism was introduced to China in the first century CE and has been adapted by the Chinese so that the mythologies of the indigenous faiths and the imported are intertwined.

Read a book with an overweight character, set in India or where a character experiences a rebirth of some form (becomes a vampire, changes themselves in some way). Silver Silence by Nalini Singh


1. Malays, as with other Southeast Asians, have always taken great interest in stories of ghosts and spirits. It must be stressed that due to the animistic root of Malay folklore, these ghosts are seen as sharing the plane of existence with humans and are not always considered evil. However, when the delicate line that separates the boundaries of existence is crossed, or a transgression of living spaces occurs, a conflict ensues that may result in disturbances such as possessions.

Read a book where someone gets possessed. Shutter by Courtney Alameda

2. Pelesit is a Malay term for an inherited spirit or demon which serves a master. The Pelesit is reared by a woman as a shield for protection, guidance, and most probably as a weapon to harm other people. In that way it is associated with a black magic practitioner.

Read a book with a character who can communicate with ghosts. Veiled Menace by Deborah Blake

3. The Penanggalan is a ghost of Southeast Asian folk mythology. It is a variation of the vampire myth found in the Malay Peninsula. The Penanggalan is a detached female head capable of flying about on its own. As it flies, the stomach and entrails dangle below it, and these organs twinkle like fireflies as the Penanggalan moves through the night.

Read a book where someone’s head gets chopped off. Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh


1. Gozu (Ox-head), also known as Cow Head, is a Japanese urban legend about a fictional story called ‘Cow Head’. Supposedly the Cow Head story is so horrifying that people who read or hear it are overcome with fear so great that they tremble violently for days on end until they die. One variation involves a teacher who tells a bored group of school children the story, resulting in the children and teacher becoming catatonic and losing their memory. Other variations include the detail that no one is able to retell the story since they die after hearing it.

Read a book where a character has memory loss. North Child by Edith Pattou

2. Children walking alone at night may encounter a woman wearing a surgical mask. This is not an unusual sight in Japan, as people wear them to protect others from their colds or sicknesses. The woman will stop the child and ask, “Am I beautiful?” If they say “no”, she kills them with a pair of scissors she always carries. If they say “yes”, the woman removes her mask to reveal her mouth has been slit from ear to ear. The Kuchisake-onna will then ask, “How about now?” Regardless of whether the child answers yes or no at this point, the woman will kill them: If they say no, they are cut in half; if they say yes, she cuts their mouths to be exactly like hers. To escape the Kuchisake-onna, you can answer her second question with “You’re average” or “So-so”, which will confuse her so that you can escape. Alternatively, you can throw fruits or sweets at her feet, which she will pick up, thus giving the victim a chance to run. One other option is to ask her if you are pretty: She will also get confused and leave. And a fourth possibility is to say you have to meet up with your husband/your wife and she will excuse herself and leave.

Read a book with a story/plot that is confusing or surprising. The Frog Princess by E.D. Baker

3. The Red Room story is an internet legend about a pop up that appears on the victim’s computer. The image simply shows a door and a recorded voice asks “Do you like – “. Even if the pop up is closed it will repeatedly reappear until the voice finally completes the question: “Do you like the red room?” Those who have seen the pop-up are found dead, their walls painted red in their own blood.

Read a book where a character does research on the internet. Monday Mourning by Kathy Reichs

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The continent of Australia is a single country continent. It is the sixth largest country by total area, and is also the smallest of all the seven continents. Because of its size, and isolated location, it is also called as island continent.

* Read a book set, at least in part, anywhere in this continent. Kangaroo Dundee by Chris ‘Brolga’ Barns

Western Australia 

1. Known as one of the most haunted places in the southern hemisphere, the Fremantle Arts Centre has its own stock of macabre stories. Built in 1867 by convict labour as Western Australia’s first lunatic asylum, it was condemned after two deaths and a government inquiry.

Read a book featuring an asylum or insane character. Lucinda’s Secret by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black

2. Glowing lights, ethereal visions and guests abruptly leaving its infamous Room 24 have made the Kalamunda Hotel a source of local folklore. There are at least three ghost stories surrounding the hotel, one concerning its original owner and builder, Paddy Connolly, who allegedly went a bit paranoid in his latter years. He put barbed wire on the underside of the roof to prevent anyone from breaking in and allegedly locked himself into his own roof space.

Read a book set in a hotel. The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa

3. Malevolent, invisible attackers allegedly plague the Old York Hospital, which was built in 1894 to 1895 to accommodate the increasing number of ill prospectors from the goldfields. It stopped operation as a hospital in 1963 and it wasn’t until 1976 that the National Trust acquired the buildings. It became a youth hostel in the ’80s and ’90s, until not even plucky backpackers could bear to stay the night any more and it was shut down. Visitors and workers have reported being grabbed, thrown and stuck by needles by unseen presences.

Read a book set in a hospital or with a doctor. Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs


1. The Yara-ma-yha-who is an Australian vampire from Aboriginal folklore. He is a short, red, uh, man, resembling a demon. He has no teeth, which is unusual for a bloodsucking vampire. The Yara-ma-yha-who waits in a tree for a victim to stop beneath, then jumps on him and sucks blood out through the octopus-like suckers the Yara-ma-yha-who has on his hands and feet. If this demon eats someone, he will take a nap and then vomit the meal back up. Luckily, the victim may still be alive! However, if the same person is victimized in this manner too many times, he will himself become a Yara-ma-yha-who.

Read a book with vampires or demons. Small Shen by Kylie Chan & Queenie Chan

2. The Drop Bear is the creature that visitors to Australia are most often warned about. A marsupial native to Australia, it is a vicious carnivore that attacks its prey by hiding high in a tree and dropping onto unsuspecting tourists. Photos of a drop bear show a startling resemblance to a koala, which is how the sneaky beasts fool you into standing under their trees. Defenses against the Drop Bear include sticking a fork into your hair or smearing Vegemite behind your ears.

Read a book where someone is attacked or with bear shifters. Dragon’s Nest by Emily Rodda

3. A Bunyip is a spirit monster from Australian Aborigine culture. It sleeps in rivers, swamps, and billabongs during the day, but prowls the land at night, looking for people or animals to eat. Its screams can be heard for long distances. Some Aboriginals claim to have seen a Bunyip, but descriptions vary. Does it resemble a snake, a wild human, or a furry mammal? Some theorize that while the Bunyip may be legendary, the tales have been passed down for thousands of years, from back in the days when now-extinct large predators prowled Australia.

Read a book with a nocturnal creature. Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

New South Wales 

1. The Gippsland Phantom Cat is a large cat spotted in the Grampians region since the 1970s. The consensus among experts is that there have been sightings of large cats, probably feral descendants of house cats. U.S. soldiers stationed in Victoria during World War II had a pair of pumas as mascots, and some think the two animals may have been set free and then reproduced in the wild, possibly mating with feral house cats over the years. There is no conclusive evidence for this. In 2005, hunter Kurt Engel shot a large cat with a 26″ tail. Mitochondrial DNA tests on the large feral cat show it was a common domestic cat species, at least on its mother’s side. The Gippsland Phantom Cat is not to be confused with the Lion of Gripsholm Castle.

Read a book with cat shifters. Green-Eyed Envy by Kasey MacKenzie

2. Muldjewangk are monsters (or maybe just one monster) that inhabit the Murray River and Lake Alexandrina into which it flows in South Australia. The tales of the monster are told to keep children away from the dangerous water. One story tells of a European steamboat captain that shot a Muldjewangk and was rewarded with a slow lingering death from creeping red blisters that covered his body. The Muldjewangk is also blamed for boat wrecks. Beware the seaweed growing in the lake -that’s where the Muldjewangk hide!

Read a book with a sea monster or where someone goes swimming. Dangerously Fierce by Deborah Blake

3. Hawkesbury River Monster is sort of a cousin to Nessie, the Scottish Loch Ness Monster. The Hawkesbury River in New South Wales, Australia, is a very deep river, and the monster it accommodates is described as up to 24 meters long. Aboriginal paintings thousands of years old hint at sightings of the monster, which resembles a prehistoric plesiosaur. Although there are quite a few modern sightings, no one has been able to get a picture of the river monster.

Read a book with a river on the cover. The Fish Ladder by Katharine Norbury

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Antarctica is the southernmost continent of all. It is made of large permanent glaciers that surround the South Pole. This is one of the most uninhabitable places on earth. With a very small population of less than 5000 residents, Antarctica is the least populated continent on earth. 

* Read a book with the title begins with any letter from ANTARCTICA. Tortall: A Spy’s Guide by Tamora Pierce

1. Antarctica is the most southerly continent and encompasses the South Pole. It is surrounded by the Southern Ocean and divided in two by the Transantarctic Mountains. On average, it is the coldest, driest, windiest, and highest of all the continents.

Read a book set in a cold country or during winter. Magic Flutes by Eva Ibbotson

2. Piri Reis was a famous 15th century Turkish naval admiral. His navigational map was discovered by historians in 1929 and it shows the Antarctica landmass the way it is beneath the ice. A copy of his map was given to the U.S. Hydrographic Institute who were amazed at its accuracy, considering it had been drawn 300 years before Antarctica had been discovered. They even used it to correct some of their own maps. Piri Reis himself stated that his map was created from even earlier maps called portolans. What astounds scientists is how these maps were created in ancient times without the benefit of aerial or satellite survey facilities.

Read a book where someone goes on an adventure or makes a discovery. Cavern of the Fear by Emily Rodda

3. The Antarctic Treaty, which was signed in 1959 by 12 countries and prohibits any military activity, supports scientific research and protects the continent’s ecozone. Ongoing experiments are conducted by more than 4000 scientists of many different nationalities and with many different research interests.

Read a book set, at least in part, in any of these countries. Full list. – Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

4. Although Antarctica has no permanent residents, a number of governments maintain permanent research stations throughout the continent. The population of persons doing and supporting science on the continent and its nearby islands varies from approximately 4000 in summer to 1000 in winter. Many of the stations are staffed around the year.

Read a book with a scientist or where someone is conducting experiments. Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly

5. The first child born in the southern polar region was Norwegian girl Solveig Gunbjorg Jacobsen, born in Grytviken on 8 October 1913, and her birth registered by the resident British Magistrate of South Georgia. She was a daughter of Fridthjof Jacobsen, the assistant manager of the whaling station, and of Klara Olette Jacobsen. Jacobsen arrived on the island in 1904 to become the manager of Grytviken, serving from 1914 to 1921; two of his children were born on the island.

Read a book with children or where someone gets pregnant. The Seeing Stone by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black

6. As in most places around the world, UFOs and strange lights have been seen over Antarctica. Some people associate UFOs with Nazi Germany experiments in underground facilities. There is no verified physical evidence of this.

Read a book with aliens or from the Science Fiction genre. Winter by Marissa Meyer (Lunars)

7. Ningen is a Japanese word meaning “human.” But there’s something definitely inhuman about the stories of the Ningen that live in the waters off Antarctica. These sea monsters are white and have been reported up to 30 meters long. Ningen have humanoid eyes and mouths, but descriptions of their bodies vary. They may have fins or arms and legs, or sometimes arms with fingered hands and fins instead of legs, like a mermaid.

Read a book with where someone is not who they seem to be. Ill Wind by Rachel Caine

8. Hitler and the Nazis strongly suspected that Antarctica was once home to a lost Atlantean civilization. In 1938, Hitler launched an expensive expedition to the South Pole. At the same time, Germany was also busy with all the military preparations for launching WWII, and it is astounding that Hitler would find it necessary to explore and lay claim to a cold, frozen continent half way around the world with no apparent military significance.

Read a book where someone travels far from their home. The Red Queen by Isobelle Carmody

9. Antarctica Animals – The most abundant and best known animals from the southern continent. Penguins, whales seals, albatrosses, other seabirds and a whole range of invertebrates you may have not heard of such as krill which form the basis of the Antarctic food web.

Read a book with any of these animals or with a white object on the cover. Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

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70 percent of the earth’s surface is covered by water, out of which over 96 percent is salt water in our oceans.


1. 20,000 leagues under the sea – French naturalist Dr. Aronnax embarks on an expedition to hunt down a sea monster, only to discover instead the Nautilus, a remarkable submarine built by the enigmatic Captain Nemo. Together Nemo and Aronnax explore the underwater marvels, undergo a transcendent experience amongst the ruins of Atlantis, and plant a black flag at the South Pole. But Nemo’s mission is one of revenge and his methods coldly efficient.

Read a book with a secretive character or a submarine. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

2. Pirates – Those who engage in acts of piracy are called pirates. The earliest documented instances of piracy were in the 14th century BC, when the Sea Peoples, a group of ocean raiders, attacked the ships of the Aegean and Mediterranean civilizations.

Read a book with pirates or from Steampunk genre. Stardust by Neil Gaiman


1. Atlantis is a legendary “lost” island subcontinent often idealized as an advanced, utopian society holding wisdom that could bring world peace. The idea of Atlantis has captivated dreamers, occultists and New Agers for generations.

Read a book that features Atlantis or where someone goes missing. Shadowgate by Emily Rodda

2. Poseidon is the god of the sea and protector of all aquatic features. Brother of Zeus and Hades, after the overthrow of their father, Cronus, he drew lots with them to share the universe. He ended up becoming lord of the sea. He was widely worshipped by seamen. He married Amphitrite, one of the granddaughters of the Titan Oceanus.

Read a book featuring Greek mythology. – Atlantis Unleashed by Alyssa Day


1. The Kraken is a legendary sea monster of giant size that is said to dwell off the coasts of Norway and Greenland. A number of authors over the years have postulated that the legend originated from sightings of giant squids that may grow to 12–15 meters (40–50 feet) in length, despite the fact that the creature in the original tales was not described as having tentacles and more closely resembled a whale or crab.

Read a book with a kraken or any kind of monster. The Isle of Illusion by Emily Rodda

2. A mermaid/man is a legendary aquatic creature with the head and upper body of a human and the tail of a fish. Mermaids have been a popular subject of art and literature in recent centuries, such as in Hans Christian Andersen’s well-known fairy tale “The Little Mermaid” (1836).

Read a book with mermaids or set in the 1800’s. The Alchemist’s Key by Traci Harding


1. East India Trading Company was an English and later British joint-stock company,[2] which was formed to pursue trade with the East Indies but ended up trading mainly with the Indian subcontinent and Qing China.The company eventually came to rule large areas of India with its own private armies, exercising military power and assuming administrative functions.

Read a book where someone tries to take control of another group or usurp leadership. Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

2. Ocean exploration is a part of oceanography describing the exploration of ocean surfaces. Notable explorations were undertaken by the Greeks, the Egyptians, the Polynesians, the Phoenicians, Phytheas, Herodotus, the Vikings, the Portuguese and Muslims. Scientific investigations began with early scientists such as James Cook, Charles Darwin, and Edmund Halley. Ocean exploration itself coincided with the developments in shipbuilding, diving, navigation, depth, measurement, exploration, and cartography.

Read a book tagged Historical. Tough Mothers by Jason Porath


1. A sea shanty, chantey, or chanty is a type of work song that was once commonly sung to accompany labor on board large merchant sailing vessels. The term shanty most accurately refers to a specific style of work song belonging to this historical repertoire. However, in recent, popular usage, the scope of its definition is sometimes expanded to admit a wider range of repertoire and characteristics, or to refer to a “maritime work song” in general.

Read a book where someone sings, attends a musical/concert, or tagged Music. Wild: A Journey from Lost to Found by Cheryl Strayed

2. A ghost ship, also known as a phantom ship, is a ship with no living crew aboard; it may be a ghostly vessel in folklore or fiction, such as the Flying Dutchman, or a real derelict found adrift with its crew missing or dead, like the Mary Celeste.

Read a book with ghosts. Once Upon a Curse by E.D. Baker

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