A to Z Challenge Reflection Post #atozchallenge

The Blogging April A to Z Challenge has now ended. As 2023 is my eighth year of participating in this challenge, I’ve become quite used to April being a very busy month. For me, the key to completing the challenge successfully is planning and organisation. My theme this year was book reviews, so there were books to read, and reviews to write. I read all books that were reviewed. Some, in the past couple of years, but most of them in more recent months. I love the planning and choosing of books, according to a letter of the alphabet. This often has me choosing books that I wouldn’t usually read, just to be able to write a review on a particular letter. This often brings up some lovely surprises.

This year, because I knew I would be time poor, I was quite organised, and this meant that I was able to read and comment on more blogs than I ever have in previous years. I’ve given a bit of thought to the 2023 challenge and have come up a few things that I am happy about and a few challenges that I had.

What I Am Happy About

By the time 2022 had become 2023, I had written a plan of the books that I was going to review, and still needed to read.

On the day that the challenge website opened, I had written rough drafts for most posts.

Almost all posts were written, and ready to be published before the challenge started.

I visited many great blogs on a huge variety of topics and themes during the challenge.

There were many comments made on my blog, with some of those comments being made by bloggers other than book bloggers.

I loved that bloggers often commented about their favourite books.

A relationship has developed with a few bloggers that I hope will continue into the future.


A few posts that were not completed by the start of the challenge, were left until the last minute. Those posts were for W X Y Z. Because of this procrastination, the final week was quite hectic, which is what I was trying to avoid. This was the only challenge that I had with the AtoZ this year.

Fun Facts

5 star books: Two
4 star books: Thirteen
4.5 star books: Four
3.5 star books: Six
3 star books: one book

Australian authors: Ten books
Female authors: Fifteen books
Male authors: Eleven books

My favourite book was the very last book reviewed, Zambesi by Tony Park.

Challenge Future

All being well in my life, I will be back for A to Z in 2024. I have decided that next year I will participate in the challenge on my family history blog,Tracking Down The Family. I don’t need to spend all year trying to come up with a theme for 2024, as I am fairly certain that I have settled on one.

Links to my A to Z Posts

A: Anatomy: A Love Story by Dana Schwartz

B: Between Sisters by Kristin Hannah

C: Crows Nest by Nikki Motram

D: A Distant Hope by Ellin Carsta

E: Elevation by Stephen King

F: Flesh Wounds by Richard Glover

G: The Games by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan

H: A History of the World in 21 Women by Jenni Murray

I: Immortality-a-love-story-by-dana-schwartz

J: Just An Ordinary Family by Fiona Lowe

K: Kin: A Real Person’s History Of Our Nation by Nick Brodie

L: Lawson by Grantlee Kieza

M:The Murder Rule by Dervla McTiernan

N: Nightwork by Nora Roberts

O: Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

P: The Personal Librarian by Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray

Q: The Queen’s Colonial by Peter Watt

R: The Resemblance by Lauren Nossett

S: The Smuggler’s Wife Series by Deborah Challinor

T: Tell No One by Harlan Coben

U: Unsolved by James Patterson and David Ellis

V: Verity by Colleen Hoover

W: Wellmania by Brigid Delaney

X: X by Sue Grafton

Y: Yellowcake by Margo Lanagan

Z: Zambesi by Tony Park

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Theme Reveal 2023 #atozchallenge

Best Bookish Blog went into what was meant to be a very short hiatus, just as the world was struck by the pandemic. All the worry about Covid and what was ahead for us, caused me to lose my way a bit, and there hasn’t been a blog post here since then.

That is all about to change, as I’m now intending to revive the blog, and continue to add to my book reviews. If you would like to check out the reviews done so far, they are listed here

The other announcement is that, once again, I will be participating in the April A to Z Blogging Challenge. The April A-Z Challenge, requires me to post every day in April, except Sunday, to a chosen theme, using the letters of the alphabet from A-Z. Some bloggers choose not to have a theme and that’s ok too.

I have participated in the A to Z Challenge every year since 2015, on my other blogs, but on this blog only two times. In 2016 I participated on two blogs. I can say that the challenge of posting two posts a day for a month was more stress than anyone needs. I most probably won’t be doing that again.

I really do enjoy this challenge for many reasons. Aside from the discipline it takes to be organised sufficiently to post every day, Mostly, I love the opportunity to connect with other bloggers. These bloggers are blogging on a very diverse range of topics, with most being vastly different to the blogs that I usually read.

My theme for 2023 will be book reviews. All reviews will be on books that I have read, some new releases, and also older books that are still available.

All reviews will be my own opinions. I receive no payments for reviews, nor do I receive free books to review, unless otherwise stated.

I would love you to join me, and hopefully find a book in my reviews that sounds interesting to you. So you don’t miss anything, you are able to follow me, by entering your email address in the sidebar.

© 2023 Copyright. all rights reserved: bestbookishblog.com

#AtoZChallenge Reflections


The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge  is for bloggers who wish to participate by publishing a blog post every day in April except for Sundays. Each blog post will focus on a letter of the alphabet. For example April 1 will be A, April 2 will be B and on it goes. By the end of April, a blog post for every letter of the alphabet will have been posted.

It’s now three days since the challenge ended, so time for my usual end of challenge wrap.


This year I was more organised than I have been in any previous AtoZ Challenges. When the challenge started, I had all posts, up to the letter T, completed and ready to go. This really took the pressure off, and allowed me to read more posts than usual on other AtoZ Blogs.

Finding new and interesting blogs is a highlight of the challenge for me, but usually I get frustrated that there isn’t enough time to devote to this. This year, I read blogs on the subjects of family history and genealogy, travel, health, fitness, books, movies and music. There are so many more topics that bloggers write about, than I ever previously knew about. Over the past four years, the AtoZ Challenge has opened my eyes to these amazing blogs and bloggers.

I really enjoy reading and commenting on a diverse range of blogs, reading their replies and getting to know bloggers from all around the world. This is a huge highlight of the challenge for me.

Another highlight is the comments that other AtoZ bloggers left on my blog. Even though I’ve been blogging for many years, this blog is only six months old. I was quite humbled that it was so well received during the challenge. There were so many lovely and supportive comments left for me over the past month. I am very proud to say that I have answered all comments. I’m very diligent about that, as I feel if someone has taken time to leave me a comment, the least I can do is reply.  A bonus is that from comments left, wonderful conversations often do develop.

The Challenges

I wrote that what worked was having all posts up to T complete at the start of the challenge. But it wasn’t ideal that posts after T hadn’t been completed. I had read the books to be reviewed after T, and planned to write the reviews in the first two weeks of the challenge. But of course the best made plans often don’t happen, and I had a bit of a panic and a few late nights in the final week, getting the posts completed. Note to self: next year complete all posts before the challenge begins.

Even though I visited, read and commented on many blogs, I would have liked to spend more time doing this, than I was as able to do. I’m genuinely interested in other blogs and bloggers, so spending time visiting blogs and commenting is a pleasure.

Over the next month, I plan to continue visiting AtoZ bloggers that I missed. I will be posting about some of these blogs, that readers here may be interested to make contact with.

Looking to 2020

At this point in time, I intend to be back for the AtoZ Challenge in 2020. I am planning to participate on this blog and also on my Family history/Genealogy blogTracking Down The Family. Doing the challenge on two blogs is a huge challenge. I know this as I did it once before, but I’m very keen to do it again. This will take planning and perfect organisation.

My promise to myself is that just for a change, I will be this person who has made the perfect plan and is perfectly organised. For me, this is part of why AtoZ is a challenge. Other bloggers will know that it isn’t easy to publish a post every day.  But getting to the end of the month, knowing that I have done exactly that, is what makes me feel proud of myself and I love that feeling.

I give many thanks to all of those bloggers participating in the AtoZ Challenge who took the time to visit and read my posts. I do appreciate that you were interested enough to take time out from what I am aware is a very busy month. I’d love you to come back and say hello during the year. But otherwise I will look forward to reconnecting with current and new challengers next year.

Big congratulations to all AtoZ Bloggers who completed the challenge. You did it! So it’s time now to celebrate your success. 



Theme Reveal – Blogging April A-Z Challenge 2019

What is Blogging April A-Z Challenge?

The Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is for bloggers who wish to participate by publishing a new blog post every day in April, except for Sunday. Each blog post will focus on a letter of the alphabet. For example, April 1 will be A, April 2 will be B, and on it goes. By the end of April, a blog post for every letter of the alphabet will have been posted.

Bloggers can choose a theme to blog about. My links, at the end of this post, to my previous A-Z challenges show examples of themes. Some bloggers choose not to have a theme, and they post on different topics every day. It’s up to the individual blogger, as to how they wish to participate. I do prefer to have a theme as it gives me focus and structure. You can find more information here

My previous A-Z Challenges

This will the fourth year that I’ve participated in the challenge. But this year it’s especially exciting for me, as 2019 is the first year that I participate on this blog, which is very new, having been launched in January 2019.

Theme Reveal

This post today, is my Theme Reveal post which is where I announce my theme for the Challenge. Bloggers who choose to have a theme, usually write a ‘Theme Reveal’ post, which is published in late March.

My theme for 2019 is Book Reviews. The theme continues on with the usual content of this blog, but by the end of the month there will be 26 new reviews published. One for each letter of the alphabet. Reviews will be both new releases and older publications. They will be both fiction and non-fiction What they will all have in common, is that I will have read every book, so you can be guaranteed that all reviews will be my honest opinion.

If you are after a recommendation for that next book to read, or just want the enjoyment of reading about books, do join me in working through the alphabet of books in April.

To ensure that you don’t miss a post, you can sign sign up for email alerts in the sidebar. You can also follow me on social media:

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Link to Theme Reveal posts from previous years participation in the Blogging April A-Z Challenge.

A-Z Challenge 2016 – Bendigo 
A-Z Challenge 2016 – Towns in Victoria
A-Z Challenge 2017  – My Ancestors
A-Z Challenge 2018 – The Story of Me