Books for Hufflepuffs

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Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes and created by Lainey @ Ginger Reads Lainey. You can check out the group’s Goodreads page for this month’s topics!

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This week’s topic is books that represent your Hogwarts house – for me, that’s Hufflepuff. Though I admittedly look awful in yellow, I’m a proud badger! The listed choices for this week are in no particular order.

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Watership Down
As a kid I couldn’t get enough of this harrowing tale of friendship and survival. As an adult, I try to re-read it once every few years. This book shook me to my core the first time I read it. The rabbits keep on keeping on, despite all odds. What’s more Hufflepuff than that?

AsterixAsterix

That’s right, this is on the list. I grew up reading these (je suis franco-ontarienne) and love them to this day. These BD’s about a small village’s refusal of the Roman occupation is still laugh out loud funny – especially all those name puns. Asterix and Obelix have an exceptional friendship, and the resistance of their village to being conquered is earmarked by stubbornness and good humour that is characteristic of Hufflepuffs. Plus, they love a good feast!

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The Southern Vampire Mysteries

I loved these books. I sped through them faster than you’d believe (and no, I haven’t seen the show). They’re on the list because Sookie is for sure a Hufflepuff. She’s just trying to live her life and all this bizarre stuff is happening around her. What does she do? Takes it in stride, ’cause that’s life. Also, she’s a romantic who really does not react well to betrayal. Why? Because she’s a hella loyal badger.

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Maresi

A simple story told in a fairy-tale style, I really enjoyed this book. The first in a series, it follows the burgeoning friendship of two girls, Maresi and Jai. They live in the Red Abbey, a haven for females as it is forbidden for men to set food on the island. It’s a story of loyalty, community, magic, and sacrifice. Hufflepuffs can be brave, clever, and sneaky when they have to but the driving factors are always loyalty and friendship. This story has that in spades. redwall.jpg

Redwall Series

Literally all of these books capture what it means to be a Hufflepuff. The peaceful beasts of Redwall abbey extend aid to all those who ask, and live quiet lives of plenty. They live as a community with shared values and goals, and when threatened they’ll take up arms to defend their lives, though they mostly abhor violence. In far away Salamandastron there live warrior badgers who are capable of entering berserker rages and decimating throngs of vermin foes – but who live as benevolent overseers of the hares of the long patrol unless absolutely necessary. That is about as Hufflepuff as anything could ever be. Also, there are feasts. Because again, we’re ‘Puffs.

That’s all for T5W this week! Have you checked out any of the books on my list? Do you have other suggestions for Hufflepuff reads, or for books that suit your Hogwarts House? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring Bookish Bingo

Hello folks, I’m back! I know that last week I said that I would be back to my regularly scheduled Fanfic Feature Friday today, but I’ve just moved this week and time has gotten away from me. So come Monday I’ll be back to my regular schedule.

For now, Winter Bookish Bingo is over, but Spring Bookish Bingo has arrived! Bookish Bingo is hosted by Bekka at Pretty Deadly Blog, if you’re interested in joining. The Spring round runs from March until the end of May.

This card is very exciting – I already have a whole bunch of ideas of what I’d like to fill the squares with! Once again, I’ll be trying to fill the whole card.

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Some ideas I’m kicking around for the various categories:

Scary: The Dead-Tossed Waves, Survive the Night

Blue Cover: The Silmarillion, It Started With Goodbye

Magic: Roar

Over 500 pages: Edgar and Lucy

PoC On Cover: The Prey of Gods

Non-Fiction: The Right to Be Cold

2017 Debut: Maud

Witches: A Great and Terrible Beauty

That’s all for now!

If you have suggestions for the other categories, let me know. If you’re choosing different reads for those categories I’d love to know your picks. Comment below to weigh in.

Winter Bookish Bingo

Winter is here! December has arrived, and with it comes snow, pine decorations, and seasonal book memes! Visit Pretty Deadly if you’d like to participate in this season’s Bookish Bingo card. It runs from December to February so there’s lots of time.

The name of the game is to get as many bingo’s as possible – five across, up, down, and diagonal. Can I fill the whole card? We shall see!

You don’t have to write a review of all of the books you use for bingo, as the object is just to fill out the card by reading. (I’m going to try and review them all though, and try advance blog scheduling for once.)

At the end of February, Pretty Deadly does an international giveaway for all participants – the more bingo’s you get, the more entries.

Here’s the winter card:

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I have a vague idea of the books I’d like to use for some of the categories, but mostly I’m going to play it by ear and see how it goes. For the Twitter Poll category, you make a list of books and let your twitter followers decide which one you’ll read.

Are you participating in Winter Bookish Bingo? Do you have any suggestions for these categories? Comment below and let me know!

Classic Book to Screen Adaptation

It’s Friday, and you know what that means!

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Classic Remarks is a meme hosted over at Pages Unbound. Every Friday they ask a question about classic literature. Participants are asked to discuss the themes, canon formation, the ‘timelessness’ of literature, and modes of interpretation.

The topic this week is:

Recommend a classic book that you think translated particularly well to screen (even if the adaptation was not entirely faithful).

First, I’ll get some honorable mentions out of the way: Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet (truest in script, but not in setting or era), Pride and Prejudice (yes, the one with Keira Knightly – fight me), Oliver & Company (Oliver Twist but it’s an animated adventure with animal main characters… what more do you want?), and of course The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Nothing else has been so epic in scale, score, costuming, or cinematography as that last. The incredible attention to detail taken in every aspect of these films was about as breathtaking as the settings. So why didn’t I choose it as my answer?

I’m trying to branch out. I thought to answer something that maybe everyone hasn’t seen to give them something new(ish) to binge watch.

My pick is a television adaptation of a classic – one of many that have been made from this same source material, in fact. And most definitely not the most faithful adaptation.

I adore Elementary, and that’s my pick for today. This adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes is my absolute favourite, standing far above the rest in my opinion. While Sherlock BBC and House are certainly enjoyable to watch, they can’t beat Elementary.

This modern take on Sherlock stars Jonny Lee Miller as our disreputable detective, and the setting is modern day New York City. I think he embodies the genius and rudeness of Holmes without going overboard – and it feels true and excellent. Sherlock is a former consultant to Scotland Yard, who now assists the NYPD in solving especially tricky crimes. He’s also a recovering drug addict.

Enter Dr. Joan Watson, played by the ever-talented Lucy Liu. She is hired by Sherlock’s father to be his live-in sober companion, following him and making certain he doesn’t have a relapse. She is quickly drawn into the strange madness that is Holmes’ life. She grows as a character throughout the seasons, and she is my favourite Watson.

I adored what this show did with Moriarty’s character, and I hope that you’ll love it too. Do NOT look it up and ruin it for yourself, you will have such regret.

Have you watched Elementary – do you agree or disagree with my pick? How do you feel about other Sherlock adaptations? Which is your favourite?

Let me know in the comments below!

T5W: Books It Took Me Longest to Read

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Top 5 Wednesday is a book meme created by Gingerreadslainey, and hosted here if you’re interested in participating! This week’s theme was a little difficult. I couldn’t decide if I should include both books I liked and didn’t like on the list. Eventually I decided I would.

I usually finish a book within two days to a week of starting it. Sometimes, circumstance prevents me from finishing a book in that time span. I haven’t included those.

The books on this list were the ones that just couldn’t hold my attention. Some I enjoyed despite that, and some I really did not.

snow-child-coverThe Snow Child (Eowyn Ivey)

I read this book at the wrong time. It’s definitely a character-driven book, with little plot. The story is interesting and the writing absolutely beautiful. I don’t know why it took me ages to read it. It literally took me more than four months to finish. I just kept putting it aside for other things. When I finally managed to finish it, I decided that I may try to re-read it during the winter. Despite the long read time, I did enjoy the story.

Monsters of Men (Patrick Ness)

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I enjoyed the first book of this series enormously, and powered through it very quickly. The world building was really interesting as were the two main characters. The second book had more shortcomings but I was still invested in the series. And then I got to this book. Wow. Such disappointment. It took me weeks to get even halfway through… and I didn’t even read the whole thing. I gave up on it.

witchs-daughterThe Witch’s Daughter (Paula Brackston)

I’m a big fan of witches, so when I got a Kobo gift card shortly after receiving an e-reader I snapped this up. It took me a while. I wasn’t a fan of how witches were portrayed in this book (especially as I was dabbling in the Pagan community at the time). The characters were either good or evil, with no ambiguity at all – and so they were pretty dull. A slow read because I just didn’t like the content of the book.

The Hobbit (J.R.R Tolkien)the-hobbit-cover

As a kid, I picked up a copy of The Hobbit at a book jumble sale. When I tried to read it I just wasn’t into it. The writing style didn’t appeal to 14 year old me, and even as an adult it took me two weeks to get through. I admire Tolkien greatly, and have enjoyed some of his other works, but though I can see the value in The Hobbit it isn’t one of my favourites.

girl-on-the-train-coverThe Girl on the Train (Paula Hawkins)

I picked this up when I was lost in the PATH (story of my life), and it had just come out. I had asked the friendly woman behind the counter what she would recommend for a great read – and this was her choice. I jumped into it eagerly, and stalled pretty quickly. It was just too slow paced to hold my attention at the time, and I stopped after about three chapters. Now that its being made into a movie I’ll have to give it another shot.

What books took you the longest to read? Care to defend any of my DNF’s or slow reads? Do we have any slow reads in common?

Fall TBR List – Top Ten Tuesday

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I’ve discovered yet another book meme, this one hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Top Ten Tuesday is basically exactly as it sounds: participants list their ‘top ten’ of whatever the subject is every week. I thought I’d start this week since the topic is your Fall TBR list!

Generally I don’t ever have a coherent TBR, but this upcoming season seems to be the exception for me.

I don’t know that I’ll be able to read all of these, or if I’ll be adding in other reads here and there, but these are the books that I’m looking forward to getting to this season!

Goldenhand, by Garth Nix

The highly anticipated continuation of The Old Kingdom series, I cannot wait to get my hands on this and throw myself back into the fantastic world that Nix has created.

The Night Wanderer, by Drew Hayden Taylor

Chosen because I want to do some spooky reading in October, and I’m excited to read something billed as ‘A Native Gothic Novel’.

The Mad Scientist’s Daughter, by Cassandra Rose Clarke

A book I’ve been curious about since it came out, I finally came across a copy at my bookstore.  Apparently dealing with sentient rights, I’m looking forward to reading it.

My Real Children, by Jo Walton

A book about one woman’s life, and the two distinct paths it takes after a choice is made.

Invisible Planets: An Anthology of Contemporary Chinese SF in Translation, translated by Ken Liu

It’s always thrilling to read more diverse authors, and I’m so excited to take a look at the worlds created by these authors.

Children of Icarus, by Caighlan Smith

An ARC I got through NetGalley, there isn’t a lot of information about this book save that it’s based in mythology about Icarus.

The Dhow House, by Jean McNeil

Another NetGalley find, this time from Legend Press – who also published The Blackbird Singularity.

The Vegetarian, by Han Kang

A protagonist who stops eating meat and the surprising consequences of her choice.

Spider’s Song, by Anita Daher

Another spooky October read, this time not supernatural but instead dealing with more human terrors.

The Girl with All the Gifts, by M.R. Carey

Possibly another October read, I saw the movie trailer based on this book and am super intrigued about the concept.

Do we share any of the same books? What’s on your Fall TBR list?

Classic Remarks: Recommend A Tolkien Book

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Classic Remarks is a meme hosted over at Pages Unbound. Every Friday they ask a question about classic literature. Participants are asked to discuss the themes, canon formation, the ‘timelessness’ of literature, and modes of interpretation.

I decided to join in this week because the question is about Tolkien!

Which Tolkien book would you recommend to a reader after they’ve finished reading ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’?

I think this question isn’t as straightforward as simply recommending a book. First, you have to find out what the reader most enjoyed about the Tolkien they’ve already read. Did they love the accessibility of the Hobbit, in my opinion a very non-pretentious high fantasy? Or maybe they loved Tolkien’s creation of languages and cultures in LOTR and wish to learn more about Middle Earth? Maybe they just love high fantasy epics and are looking to slake their thirst with a story packed with interesting characters performing heroic deeds?

Luckily, there’s a recommendation for each of those questions!

For readers who loved the accessibility of The Hobbit I would recommend Tales from the Perilous Realm. The five stories within have the kind of whimsy that I loved in The Hobbit, and I think it’s a wonderfully fun read.

For readers looking to learn more about Middle Earth but still seeking a story, The Silmarillion is my recommendation. Here, the reader gets to explore some of the fascinating history of Middle Earth. I’ve seen a few reviews in which the writer stated they approached reading The Silmarillion as if it were The Bible or a historical text, and that is absolutely the way to view it. Extremely worth it if you’re interested in the subject, but undeniably a bit dry.

For those wanting to read an epic tale, I would recommend The Children of Hurin. A captivating book, it will certainly deliver a story worth reading. This is really not a happy book – it very much reads like a Greek tragedy. What can go wrong will do so in terrible ways, but for those that are willing to cry on public transit the payoff of a great story is all that’s needed.

There you have it, three Tolkien recommendations that I think encompass his tales of Middle Earth quite completely! Though he did of course write on other subject matter, and many more volumes of his work were published posthumously, I think that with these three novels the door is opened to those seeking more of Tolkien’s work.

If readers continue to seek out his work, I’ll be waiting here with even more recommendations.

What would you recommend?