Boarding House Books

Those ambitious readers taking part in the Boarding House Staircase challenge are right around the half-way mark this week.

Guests of the downtown book shop are familiar with the brightly painted staircase mirroring the spines of classic books.

Books many readers talk about reading, but rarely seem to get around to.

The Boardinghouse staff got the bright idea to do a 22-week challenge, encouraging classics to be read one per week.

"We, too, challenge you to join us in our Boarding House Stair Challenge! Discover for the first time a classic or revisit a treasured favorite and see why we proudly (and permanently) display these specific books," they said. "From April 29 through September 29 we challenge you to read and report your thoughts (in questionnaire form) on the 22 featured classics that our local artists and employees have so beautifully brought to life in our little corner of the world."

By now, readers in the challenge have devoured "Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy," "The Three Musketeers," "Little Women," "Frankenstein," "The Great Gatsby," "The Grapes of Wrath" and more.

More literary favorites like "The Hobbit," "Gone with the Wind," "Pride & Prejudice," and "Wuthering Heights" still await them.

The challenge was the brainchild of Boarding House employee, Nichole.

"I walk these stairs every day and see this beautiful art work," she said. "But I've never read a lot of these…I love the art work, but I want to love the books, too."

She is currently working her way through the "Grapes of Wrath" but says "The Book Thief" has been her favorite so far.

For readers who may find the challenge of tackling some literary classics, she advises that some of them are shorter and easier than one might think.

She said it's not too late to join the challenge.

The books on the list don't have to be read in order, and submitting a questionnaire is all it takes to enter, she said.

The book list, the questionnaire and more information can be found on the Boarding House Books Facebook page.