I’ve been searching for another book tag for a while now, but struggled to find one that I could actually answer. I found quite a few that asked for opinions or decisions about characters from specific books (ie. RIP It Or Ship It), which I haven’t necessarily read. Instead, I decided to look for tags related to some of my favourite things, like the Pokemon Go tag I did not too long ago.
I saw so many variants of Harry Potter tags, and even variants of The Harry Potter Spells tag. The version that I’m doing here was found on The Dreamland Book Blog, and can be found here. I’m not sure which version is the original, so if it’s your tag, please let me know and I’ll add a link back to you!
1) Flagrate (Writing Charm) – A book that you found interesting but would like to rewrite
This was kind of a tough call, but I’m going with Saving Max. I found the concept of this book so interesting, but I hated the way it was written. The book is about a woman named Danielle whose autistic son is accused of murdering another patient in the psychiatric facility he was sent to. Danielle is convinced her son is innocent and takes it upon herself to prove that he is not as disturbed as the psychiatric facility claims. I was very disappointed with the way this book was written. It was written in third-person present tense, which I always tend to find awkward. Danielle was an extraordinarily frustrating main character, and the author did very little to develop the relationship between her and her son enough to justify why she was so convinced of his innocence. The most frustrating part for me was the use of an autism diagnosis as a plot device to explain why her son was sent away, without the son really showing any signs of autism other than excellent computer skills. The plot twist toward the end was very interesting, and the book ended well, but the writing just irritated me.
2) Alohomora (Unlocking Charm) – The first book in a series that got you hooked
Well, Harry Potter would be the obvious answer here, but I am doing my best to avoid mentioning it in every tag. In terms of books I’ve read more recently, I would pick The Madman’s Daughter. I read this book last year as part of one of my reading challenges, and actually procrastinated on reading it for quite a while in favour of other books that I wanted to read more. As soon as I read the first chapter of this, I was immediately hooked and wanted to read the rest of the series. I devoured the book quickly, and was very impressed by the writing style and the story itself. I can’t wait to read the rest!
3) Accio (Summoning Spell) – A book you wish you could have right now
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult! It took a very long time for this book to be released in the first place, and now that it is out, I’ve been waiting for the paperback. I’ve been dying to read this book since Jodi Picoult is my favourite author and I always buy everything she releases. Normally, her books come out in October as a hardcover, and then the paperback version in March. Since I’ve always bought the paperbacks before, I’ve been waiting and waiting for the paperback of this to be out to…only to discover it won’t be released until June! I’m seriously debating just getting the hardcover instead.
4) Avada Kedavra (The Killing Curse) – A killer book
Even after seeing how a few other people have answered this question, I’m still not entirely sure what it is asking for. I decided to interpret it as a book that “kills” the reader in terms of being very emotional. My first inclination is to pick A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness, but for the sake of adding some books that I have not talked about here before, I will go with The Last Song, the ending of which just killed me. Nicholas Sparks’ books are always intended to be tearjerkers, although some do it more successfully than others. For me, this was one of the stronger stories and I thought it was a bit different compared to many of his others. I still find it hard to believe that this book was written specifically for Miley Cyrus to play in the movie, but it works surprisingly well.
5) Confundo (Confusion Charm) – A book you found confusing
Definitely In the Skin of a Lion. I was forced to read this book when I was in high school, and I think it was my first real exposure to a non-linear timeline in a story. I had no idea what was going on in the book, and as a result, I hated reading it. It didn’t help that the teacher I had at the time was obsessed with how brilliant this book was, and was quite strict and intimidating, so it was hard for me to ask her anything about it. My best friend re-read this book by choice later on and said it was much better on a second try, so I might consider trying it again on my own later.
6) Expecto Patronum (Guarding Spell) – Your spirit animal book
I’ll admit that this is another question that I wasn’t sure what to do with. I’m not really into spirit animals, so I wasn’t sure which way to go with it. Off the top of my head, I would go with Rebecca because I related so strongly to the main character. Like her, I have a tendency to overthink everything and I’m pretty socially awkward. I can’t say I relate too much to the plot itself, but I loved the writing style and the atmosphere. Just looking at my Goodreads list now, I can’t believe’s it has already been over a year since I read it!
7) Sectumsempra (Dark Curse) – A dark, twisted book
Little Girls by Ronald Malfi. This is still one of the creepiest, most disturbing books that I’ve read. I almost never read horror or this kind of paranormal story because I’m too much of a coward. These types of book tend to haunt me and creep me out long after I finished reading it. This book was definitely dark and twisted, in several ways. For a book that was so far outside my comfort zone, I was very impressed and surprised to find how much I enjoyed it.
8) Expecto Patronum (Guarding Spell) – A childhood book connected to good memories
Somehow, when I first looked at the tag, I somehow missed the fact that Expecto Patronum was listed twice for two different questions. I’m not sure if it was a mistake, but I figured I’d do the tag as I found it anyway. I was a huge reader when I was younger, and there are many books that could pick for this. I would have to go with Charlotte’s Web. I was also debating The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe but since I already mentioned that very recently in a Top 5 Wednesday post, I decided to switch it up. This was a book that was read out loud to my third grade class, and it was one of the first “real” books that I can remember loving, instead of just picture books. After hearing it for the first time in school, I read it so many times on my own. It was one of the books that I read most often.
9) Expelliarmus (Disarming Spell) – A book that took you by surprise
This one was an easy choice. I would have to go with Defending Jacob, a book that I probably never would have picked up if it wasn’t for my reading challenge two years ago. It was for the prompt “a book your mom loves,” which was a tough one since my mom is an avid reader with many favourite books, although our tastes can be pretty different. This book was much more compelling than I expected it to be. Even when it started to get a little dry toward the end, it quickly turned things around with a few shocking twists. I actually chose to read Saving Max because of how much I loved this book, and was very disappointed when it didn’t live up to this one.
10) Prior Incantato (Reverse Spell) – The last book you read
Just last night, I finished reading Symptoms of Being Human, a YA book about a gender-fluid teenager named Riley who starts writing an anonymous blog to help deal with problems at school and at home. I thought it was a very interesting book, and a good introduction for gender fluidity, a topic which I knew very little about. I loved the characters and especially Riley’s blog posts, but I thought the plot could have been a little stronger.
11) Riddikulus (Boggart Banishing Spell) – A funny book you’ve read
It’s more of a funny series, but I really loved the Georgia Nicholson series by Louise Rennison. The first book is Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging, and it is a 10 book series following the life of a young British teenager, and her experiences with boys, friends, and her family. I read most of this series when I was younger, and I thought they were hilarious! I would not necessarily recommend reading all 10 in a row, since the style can get a little repetitive at times, but they are definitely worth reading. Georgia can be really obnoxious as a main character sometimes, but that’s part of what makes the book so funny.
12) Sonorus (Amplifying Charm) – A book you think everyone should know about
I don’t think I’ve read too many books that haven’t already been widely read, but I think everyone should know about The Help. I read this a few years ago, and was blown away by it. This was another book that I avoided for a while because of all the hype, but it definitely lives up to it! The book is about black maids in Mississippi in the 1960s who, working with a young white woman, start a project to write a book that tell their own experiences to illustrate the reality of what it is like to serve white families. The goal is reveal the truth about the way black workers are treated by the white families they work for, both positive and negative. I really loved this book, and I thought that it was very well-written. The author really brought all of the characters to life, telling their story in a way that was compelling, funny, and very meaningful. It quickly became one of my favourite books.
13) Obliviate (Memory Charm) – A book or spoiler you would like to forget having read
This was actually a spoiler that I heard, not one that I read but I was very upset at the time! It was just after Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince had come out, and I was out with some friends. For several weeks, we’d heard that a significant character would die and debated who we thought it would be. I made a prediction for who it would be, since it was the only character that I thought would make sense to be killed off at that time. On the night we were out as a group, one of my friends, who had recently bought and read the book, came over to me and said “I won’t tell you what happened, but I’ll just say that you’re an excellent prophet.” I was so upset! Even without knowing the details of what happened, it was still enough of a spoiler to know who it was. I still devoured the book to found out how, but I was annoyed with my friend for quite a long time afterwards.
14) Imperio (Controlling Curse) – A book you had to read for school
There were quite a few books that my school made us read. In the later years of elementary school, we did a few “novel study” projects through the year, where we were assigned a book that we had to read and answer questions about. In high school, we read one book and one play each English course (which was about 5-6 months), plus an additional book or two of our choice. One of the books that stood out most to me that I was required to read for school was The Kite Runner. At the time, I was disappointed that my teacher chose this book because it meant we were “missing out” on other classics that most other classes were reading, including 1984, Brave New World, or The Handmaid’s Tale. I ended up really loving this book, and was glad that I read it. It is not necessarily the kind of book I would have been inclined to read on my own, but I thought it was a very interesting and very emotional story.
15) Crucio (Torture Curse) – A book that was torture to read
Inkheart!! I knew that this book was very popular when I was younger, but I’d never had much interest in reading it. I decided to give it a chance last year as part of my reading challenge. I don’t know if it was because I never had much interest in the first place, or if it was because I was so much older than the target audience, but I just could not get into this book at all. I literally had to force myself to continue reading it just so I could get through it and move on to the next one. I thought the idea behind it was pretty interesting, but the book just dragged on and on. It was much too slow-paced, and by the time the story really got going (which took a long time), I just didn’t care anymore. I’m honestly not sure I would have liked it any better if I had read it when I was younger either.