Sunday, February 5, 2012

2012 Downton Abbey Reading Challenge

 January 1, 2012 - December 31, 2012

I am a big fan of the ITV series Downton Abbey and have been eagerly watching since it premiered on PBS last year. I decided to host a Downton Abbey reading challenge because of my own interest in the time period and I was inspired as well by the many articles listing Downton Abbey readalikes such as The House at Riverton or The American Heiress

The goal of the Downton Abbey Reading Challenge is to read books that are related to Downton Abbey either by time period, characters, or subject. 

Challenge Levels

Kitchen Maid: Read 1 book related to Downton Abbey
House Maid/Footman: Read 2-3 books related to Downton Abbey
Valet/Lady's Maid: Read 4-5 books related to Downton Abbey
Butler/Housekeeper: Read 6-8 books related to Downton Abbey
Earl/Countess: Read 8-10 books related to Downton Abbey
Dowager Countess: Read 11+ books related to Downton Abbey

What kinds of books can you read?

  • Victorian/Edwardian classics
  • Fiction/Nonfiction set in the late 1800s (when Cora and other wealthy American heiresses traveled to Britain and the Continent in search of titled but impoverished husbands)
  • Fiction/Nonfiction set during the early 1900s when Downton Abbey takes place (up to 1919)
  • Fiction/Nonfiction about heiresses or heirs
  • Fiction/Nonfiction about the servant/master relationship
  • Fiction/Nonfiction about the lives of servants or aristocrats
  • Fiction/Nonfiction about events or topics mentioned in the series (The Boer Wars, the Titanic sinking, the fall of the Romanovs, WWI, women's suffrage, the political upheaval in Ireland during that time, etc.) 

There is an excellent list of Downton Abbey related books on Goodreads and you can also find suggestions through Project Downton (hosted by The Lit Bitch). 

The Prizes:

  • Prize A-One lucky participant will receive a book of their choice worth up to $15 from or The Book Depository (if The Book Depository ships to your country)
  • Prize B-One lucky participant will receive a book of their choice worth up to $10 from or The Book Depository
Rules and how to participate:

  • Books must be read between January 1, 2012 and December 31, 2012
  • Create a sign up post and add it to the Linky (you can sign up at any time throughout the challenge)
  • The way you enter the Prize A drawing is by writing reviews. Each review you link equals one entry in the prize drawing.
  • The way you enter the Prize B drawing is by meeting your reading goals (pick a level above and meet it) for this challenge and linking a wrap up post or list of books read
  • All book formats count (print, e-book, audio)
  • You can read fiction and nonfiction
  • The challenge can be combined with other challenges and rereads count


  • Nonbloggers can still join the challenge if they use Goodreads or Shelfari. To join, sign into your account, click on "My Profile" (for Goodreads) or "Profile" (for Shelfari), copy the URL and enter it into the sign up linky below.
  • You can still link your reviews to enter the $15 prize drawing or create a shelf for the challenge and link your shelf of books read at the end of the challenge to enter the $10 prize drawing
For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.