Global Reading Challenge

Inspired by ab_reads on Instagram, I have decided to give myself the challenge of reading one book from every country in the world!

To compile my list (below), I first hunted down a list of all the countries in the world. I found this one here, which I have used. I cannot vouch for its accuracy, because I am not a geographer, so if you see any glaring errors/oversights, please let me know in the comments below! I have then selected 52 to be getting started with (in bold), so I eventually have one for every week of a year, so a full year travelling the world (in book form)! This are purely based on where I know I have already read books from or where interests me in the world. I have tried to select at least one country from every continent, but again, let me know if I’ve missed any. I have then filled in all of the books I have already read (with the year in which I read it) and then put some suggested books for the countries I haven’t read from, based off of my goodreads to-read list and this blogpost. This is a work in progress and will be updated periodically, so please let me know if you have any suggestions!

As I am a Arabic and French to English translator, I have indicated whether I read the book in French or Arabic and which language it was translated from (if it was indeed translated). Unless otherwise indicated, I read the books in the original English.

NB: Most of the books I have chosen were written by an author from that country. Occasionally, I have chosen a book about that country, with an author from another country (indicated by an asterix).

  1. AfghanistanThe Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  2. Albania
  3. Algeria
  4. Andorra
  5. Angola
  6. Antigua and Barbuda
  7. Argentina
  8. Armenia
  9. AustraliaThe Secret River by Kate Grenville
  10. Austria
  11. Azerbaijan
  12. Bahamas
  13. Bahrain
  14. Bangladesh
  15. Barbados
  16. Belarus
  17. Belgium
  18. Belize
  19. Benin
  20. Bhutan
  21. Bolivia
  22. Bosnia and Herzegovina
  23. Botswana
  24. Brazil
  25. Brunei
  26. Bulgaria
  27. Burkina Faso
  28. Burundi
  29. Côte d’Ivoire
  30. Cabo Verde
  31. Cambodia
  32. Cameroon
  33. CanadaAnne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery (READ 2019 [and probably earlier when I was a child]). I reread this as an adult when the Netflix series ‘Anne with an E’ came out and was delighted to discover it was set in Canada (after I spend a month in Canada last year!)
  34. Central African Republic
  35. Chad
  36. Chile
  37. China
  38. ColombiaLove in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez (READ 2019)
  39. Comoros
  40. Congo (Congo-Brazzaville)
  41. Costa Rica
  42. Croatia
  43. Cuba
  44. Cyprus
  45. Czechia (Czech Republic)The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera. Translated from Czech by Michael Henry Heim.
  46. Democratic Republic of the Congo
  47. Denmark
  48. Djibouti
  49. Dominica
  50. Dominican Republic
  51. Ecuador
  52. EgyptAn Egyptian Childhood by Taha Hussein (READ 2015)
  53. El Salvador
  54. Equatorial Guinea
  55. Eritrea
  56. Estonia
  57. Eswatini (fmr. “Swaziland”)
  58. Ethiopia
  59. Fiji
  60. Finland
  61. FranceHistoire d’O [The Story of O] by Pauline Réage (READ 2015)
  62. Gabon
  63. Gambia
  64. Georgia
  65. GermanyAn Exclusive Love by Johanna Adorján.Translated from German by Anthea Bell.
  66. Ghana Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
  67. Greece
  68. Grenada
  69. Guatemala
  70. Guinea
  71. Guinea-Bissau
  72. Guyana
  73. Haiti
  74. Holy See
  75. Honduras
  76. Holland
  77. Hungary
  78. Iceland
  79. IndiaA Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
  80. Indonesia
  81. Iran Nina is Not OK by Shappi Khorsandi
  82. Iraq
  83. IrelandBrooklyn by Colm Tóibín (READ 2017)
  84. Israel
  85. Italy
  86. Jamaica
  87. JapanConvenience Store Woman: A Novel by Sayaka Murata (translated from Japaense by Ginny Tapley Takemori) (READ 2020) I read this as it is the second book club pick for the Global Reads Book Club, created by Eve Lindemuth Bodeux.
  88. Jordan
  89. Kazakhstan
  90. KenyaOut of Africa by Karen Blixen*
  91. Kiribati
  92. Kuwait
  93. Kyrgyzstan
  94. Laos
  95. Latvia
  96. Lebanon
  97. Lesotho
  98. Liberia
  99. Libya
  100. Liechtenstein
  101. Lithuania
  102. Luxembourg
  103. Madagascar
  104. Malawi
  105. Malaysia
  106. Maldives
  107. Mali
  108. Malta
  109. Marshall Islands
  110. Mauritania
  111. Mauritius
  112. Mexico
  113. Micronesia
  114. Moldova
  115. Monaco
  116. Mongolia
  117. Montenegro
  118. MoroccoL’Armée du Salut [The Salvation Army] by Abdellah Taïa (READ 2016). French. I chose this for a piece of coursework for my masters.
  119. Mozambique
  120. Myanmar (formerly Burma)
  121. Namibia
  122. Nauru
  123. Nepal
  124. Netherlands – The Happy Housewife by Heleen van Royen (READ 2014) Translated from Dutch.
  125. New Zealand
  126. Nicaragua
  127. Niger
  128. NigeriaWe Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (READ 2016)
  129. North KoreaEscape from Camp 14 by Blaine Harden*
  130. North Macedonia
  131. Norway The Christmas Mystery by Jostein Gaarder (READ 2014, although again I’m sure I read it as a child) Translated from Norwegian.
  132. Oman
  133. Pakistan I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
  134. Palau
  135. Palestine State
  136. Panama
  137. Papua New Guinea
  138. Paraguay
  139. PeruDeath in the Andes by Mario Vargas Llosa
  140. Philippines
  141. Poland
  142. Portugal
  143. Qatar
  144. Romania
  145. RussiaAnna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Translated from Russian.
  146. Rwanda The Girl Who Smiled Beads by Clemantine Wamariya
  147. Saint Kitts and Nevis
  148. Saint Lucia
  149. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  150. Samoa
  151. San Marino
  152. Sao Tome and Principe
  153. Saudi ArabiaGirls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea
  154. Senegal De purs hommes by Mohamed Mbougar Sarr. French.
  155. Serbia
  156. Seychelles
  157. Sierra Leone
  158. Singapore
  159. Slovakia
  160. Slovenia
  161. Solomon Islands
  162. Somalia
  163. South AfricaDisgrace by J. M. Coetzee (READ 2013)
  164. South KoreaPlease Look After Mom by Kyung-sook Shin. Translated from Korean by Chin-young Kim
  165. South Sudan
  166. SpainYerma by Federico García Lorca (READ 2018). Translated from Spanish.
  167. Sri Lanka
  168. Sudan
  169. Suriname
  170. SwedenThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson. Translated from Swedish.
  171. SwitzerlandThe Nomad by Isabelle Eberhardt. French.
  172. Syria Sahra ma’a Abi Khalil al-Qabbani [An Evening with Abu Khalil al-Qabbani] by Sa’adullah Wannous (READ 2017) Arabic. I read this for my BA dissertation.
  173. Tajikistan
  174. Tanzania
  175. Thailand
  176. Timor-Leste
  177. Togo
  178. Tonga
  179. Trinidad and Tobago
  180. Tunisia
  181. TurkeySnow by Orhan Pamuk
  182. Turkmenistan
  183. Tuvalu
  184. Uganda
  185. Ukraine
  186. United Arab Emirates
  187. United KingdomWuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (READ 2012) – Being British, I have read many books from the U.K., so I thought I’d pick my favourite.
  188. United States of AmericaThe Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. (READ 2018) I actually wrote a study guide on this.
  189. Uruguay
  190. Uzbekistan
  191. Vanuatu
  192. Venezuela
  193. Vietnam
  194. Yemen
  195. Zambia
  196. Zimbabwe

READ: 14/5227%
READ: 14/196 – 0.07%


Published by verityroat

Verity Roat BA CANTAB MA TRANSLATION CIOL Career Associate is a UK-based Arabic and French > English translator, Copy-writer, Copy-editor, Transcriber, Role-player & Tutor.

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