The 2023 Advent Reading Club(s)! 🎄 ⛄ ❄

You know how Christmas decorations start to appear earlier and earlier every year, before even Halloween is over? In that spirit, I thought we could slowly start to prepare for our own Christmas reading countdown.

Doesn’t matter if you celebrate Christmas or not, this is just a fun thing to do for the first 24-25 days of December. As a sort of countdown, or just as a fun activity or challenge.

We did it last year by reading a book over these specific days, one chunk every day:

It was all decided a bit last-minute, but this year we have all the time in the world to come up with ideas for what might be fun to read over the course of 24 days. We can all agree to read the same thing, or everyone can do their own thing and report back here every day for some festive reading chaos. :christmas_tree: :star2:

Note: I moved this thread under All Languages, because obviously, an advent calendar reading challenge can be fun in any language. So Korean reading people, and everyone else, feel free to join in with your ideas too! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

Would you be interested in participating in an Advent Reading Challenge?
  • Yes
  • No
  • Maybe
0 voters

Links to Advent Reading Clubs with their own threads:

:sparkles: :christmas_tree: 2023 Aozora Short Story and Essay Advent :snowman_with_snow:
:sparkles: :christmas_tree::question: ちょっと探偵してみませんか - A Mystery Short Story Advent (2023) :mag_right:
:sparkles: :christmas_tree::japanese_goblin: 妖怪穴 - A Yokai Advent (2023) :japanese_ogre:


Participation Poll!

Please vote for the advent idea(s) you will be doing this December. Based on participation, some advents may need their own thread, so that we can try and keep chaos to a minimum (wishful thinking :sweat_smile:).

You can were supposed to be able to vote for everything if you like (but I messed up the poll options), just remember you will need to do it daily for the first 24-25 days of December and time isn’t unlimited (I tend to forget this).

Note: I added a joke entry, but given this forum maybe it’s not so farfetched after all :grin:

Note2: Feel free to keep adding ideas until last minute (Nov 30). New ideas will have to get their own poll, but that’s okay.

0 voters

Ideas so far:

Resources for free literature in various languages

This post is a wiki. Please add your ideas as you have them. When we get closer to the time, we’ll turn them into a poll to see how many people are interested in which ideas.


My ideas, briefly, also mentioned elsewhere:

  1. I have my own calendar of Aozora short stories that I haven’t read. Between little and no idea of what each one is about. A surprise every day!

  2. I can make a calendar of Aozora short stories and essays I have read, so there’s less risk of unpleasant shock (that does happen sometimes)

  3. I think it’d be fun if some folks (maybe especially newer readers? But definitely not limited to!) did a manga sample a day so we could hear about what they found


In addition to the above mentioned ideas, I came across a book today that I think fits the challenge quite well:

(not on Natively yet)

This is a collection of 25 very short mystery stories. Each one ends on a challenge to the reader. So we can think of them as one mini puzzle for every day. The good thing about it is, it shouldn’t take up too much time, as every story is short. Since it’s something to do every single day, I think it’s good to keep in mind that not all days are equally busy.

Looking forward to hearing more ideas! Short story collections, novels with an appropriate number of chapters, or anything else that comes to mind, all ideas are welcome.


I love all of these ideas, though the manga sample one might be a bit risky to my wallet! How short can those aozora stories get? :thinking:


Oh, I was thinking of free samples only :joy:
edit: Like these. I believe some are full volumes and others are just samples of volumes, but IMO for the purpose of advent reading a sample sized portion of a full volume should count

The shortest Aozora stories are only a few pages. I’m primarily pulling the “under 10” and “under 30” minute stories, but there are under 5 minute reads as well*. I get them here: 5分以内で読める青空文庫の短編作品 | ブンゴウサーチ

*under 5 min for non-native speakers not guaranteed


If we do go the chaos route, how would you feel about moving this thread to the “All languages” section so our Korean learning friends can join as well?


I thought about that, then forgot to ask the community :sweat_smile:
Thanks for reminding me.

I’m not sure how we should handle the chaos route. It everyone does their own thing, one thread is fine. If groups of people do this, and other groups do that, then they’ll naturally want to discuss rather than just mention what they did, in which case we’d probably need individual threads, all probably linked in this one. :thinking:

Okay, moved it. It would be fun if we manage to get a Babel-level language mess :grin:
Looking forward to hearing multi-language ideas.

I wish I knew enough languages to read something in a different language for every day of the advent :eyes:


Imagine the chaos once we get more languages integrated into natively. :rofl:

you could try read something from every country that your languages are an official language in. English alone would give you like 60 countries to choose from. :rofl:


Not a bad idea at all :thinking: Or maybe just one story from a different country every day, in whatever language.

How many dialects are there in Japanese, I wonder? That would be one crazy challenge, a story in a different dialect every day.

For a multilingual challenge, I might be interested in learning (well, getting vaguely acquainted) with a different alphabet/writing system every day. But my brain would turn to mush halfway through the challenge, probably.


Yes, but when I enjoy a free sample, I usually end up buying the book :sweat_smile: That sounds dangerous!


There’s all the free manga on Manga Library Z, I might just read random oneshots every day. :smiley:


I actually loved this idea so much I bought it :grin: so I will be reading this for my advent challenge!


Since we’re going the Chaos route, does anyone have any recommendations for a potential advent challenge in Spanish? I can’t decide on what I’d want to do in Japanese, so of course let me consider a different language, haha.

(Idea for Japanese/Korean learners wanting to dip their toes into the other language: you could do a Tadoku / 두루책방 - Free (series) | L0-20 challenge.)


I can’t read much Spanish so hard to determine if there’s short stories here, but I believe this is basically Gutenberg/Aozora but for French Spanish:
edit: I’m a dumdum who was looking at both french and spanish gutenberg equivilents and linked the wrong one here. That’s French ^

I also don’t know your Spanish level but if it’s lower you could do a folk tale / children’s story each day.


As someone who has binged both of these series, this is a great idea! :+1:

If anyone knows of similar series (free graded readers with audio) for other languages, I may be tempted to try something new. :nerd_face:


I don’t even know my own Spanish level at this point. :sweat: I was probably somewhere around B2 before I stopped studying, so I’ve probably backslid to B1 in the interim, at least.


This list looks quite useful! A Guide to Spanish Websites to Practice Your Reading - Readlang Blog


Thank you!

I think this is French-only. :thinking: Someone please let me know if there’s a Spanish section here I’ve missed.

Looks like the OG Project Gutenberg has a decent selection of stuff in Spanish; I’ll need to poke around to see what might be good for my level.


:person_facepalming: I was looking at both a french and a spanish one, I linked the wrong one

OpenLibra | La Biblioteca Libre Online: libros y ebooks en PDF gratis. is Spanish