Winter Reading Challenge


Winter. It can be a cold, grey time in the Yakima Valley – not helped by the short days. Awesome books can help make it all go faster. Whether you’re curled up with a hot beverage inside, headed to the mountains to play in the snow, or traveling someplace warmer, winter can be a great time to read! With that in mind, we would like to invite our adult patrons to join in our second annual Winter Reading Challenge. From Jan. 1 to March 31, grab one of our bingo cards, read, mark off the categories to a bingo or a blackout, and enter to win fun prizes.


  • 1. Pick up a bingo card at your local library or Inklings Bookshop, or download and print a Bingo card from the YVL website.
  • 2. Pick your books. If you’re stumped or would like suggestions, ask your librarian or bookseller, try out our NoveList Plus database, or check one of our online book lists below, specially curated for some of the topics appearing on the bingo cards.
  • 3. Read! (This step is our favorite.)
  • 4. Fill in book titles and authors on your bingo card for a bingo or a blackout.
    a. a. Optional: Share a picture of a book you’re reading or your bingo card on the library’s Facebook page.
  • 5. Return your completed card(s) to your local library by March 31st and fill out an entry form for one of several prizes.
  • 6. Tell your friends about the awesome new books you discovered! (Okay, this step might also be our favorite.)


Do they have to be print books? Nope. We encourage you to enjoy all book formats, including books on CD, ebooks, downloadable audiobooks, having your nearest and dearest read aloud to you, etc.

Do they have to be library books? Obviously, we love it when you check out books from your local library, but books you have on your shelves (physical or digital), buy, borrow from friends, or received as gifts definitely count.

Can my kids participate? No, this program is limited to adults 18 and older. We invite children and teens to participate in our annual summer reading program.

I read a fantastic book that could apply to multiple squares on my bingo card. Can I do that? Sorry, you can only use each title you read once. (But please, tell people about the fantastic book!)

I started this book in 2017, didn’t finish it until the wee small hours of New Year’s Day, and didn’t get my Bingo card until after that. Can I list this title? Absolutely, if there’s a square it fits.

I see links to four cards. Are they different? Does it matter which one I do? In regular Bingo, the cards vary or the game wouldn’t be much fun. So we have four cards featuring more than 60 categories between them. Some categories are on all four cards and some on just one; some are the same as last year and some are brand-new to us. (And let us know if you have ideas for categories to include in future challenges.) Pick whichever card appeals to you!

Can I complete more than one bingo card? Of course. It’s the Winter Reading Challenge – read away! (Go for all four!)

You mentioned prizes earlier. Please, tell me more. For each bingo card you complete and return by March 31st, you can enter your name in a drawing for one of several prizes – you choose which prize jar you would like your entry to go in. Prizes include several small gift certificates and some special library experiences.  A completed bingo card can have a single bingo (a vertical, horizontal or diagonal row of five filled-in squares) or a blackout, meaning all squares are filled in. A card with a single bingo gives you one entry. A card with a blackout gives you five entries – and they don’t all have to go into the same drawing. We’ll draw names April 9th and contact winners by phone or email. If your name is drawn and we haven’t heard from you within seven (7) days from when we tried to contact you, we will draw another name.

Could my name be drawn more than once? We want to spread the joy, so one prize per person.

THE FINE PRINT: You are on your honor to read books before adding them to your Winter Reading Challenge bingo card. Cheating, skimming, or just reading reviews online will invoke bad winter karma which may include sniffles, lack of marshmallows in your hot chocolate, or losing your mittens.



Looking for suggestions for one of the squares on your card? Check with a librarian, a bookseller, NoveList Plus or a friend; browse the shelves; or try one of these booklists as a starting point.


  • $15 gift certificate to Inklings Bookshop (10 winners)
  • $15 gift certificate to Encore Books (5 winners)
  • $15 gift certificate to Amazon (5 winners)
  • $15 gift certificate in North Town Coffee (5 winners)
  • $15 gift certificate to Starbucks (5 winners)
  • Special Library Experience (if your name is drawn, you can select one of the options below) (30 winners)
    • Coffee with Director Kim Hixson
    • Be first in line for a forthcoming title of your choice (only one winner per title)
    • Pre-arranged extended computer session (up to 3 hours, depending on the library of your choice)
    • Help open your local library one day
    • “Backstage” tour of the Service Center (visit the departments that order and receive new materials, arrange for Interlibrary Loans, plan library programs, and more)
    • Vote in a staff survey for an upcoming Valley Reads title

Bingo Cards

Thank you to our partners, Inklings Bookshop and the Yakima Valley Libraries Foundation, for helping make this program possible.