top 5 tuesday: Book Worlds I Want to Live In

This month’s Top 5 Wednesday prompts aren’t really up my alley, so I’m going to temporarily jump ship and do a couple from Top 5 Tuesday, hosted by Bionic Book Worm. We’re starting out with a sort of difficult one, because I don’t read a lot of fantasy, but let’s see what I can come up with!

AUGUST 1ST – Top 5 book worlds I want to live in

3Harry Potter.  I mean, this is almost too obvious to even mention, but I have to say it anyway.  There is no fictional universe that I have ever wanted to be a part of more than the Harry Potter world.  Touring the Leavesden Studio in London was one of the most magical experiences of my life.  (Tragically, I was always too practical to be ‘waiting for my Hogwarts letter.’  I knew it was fictional.  Kid me wasn’t much of an idealist.)

11388429When the Sea is Rising Red by Cat Hellisen.  I had some problems with this book, but one thing is for sure: I loved the atmosphere.  This is a vaguely Victorian paranormal fantasy with a moody, evocative, sultry vibe, and it was awesome.  I mean, granted, I’d much rather be rich in this universe than poor, but that’s true of most places, isn’t it?


9361589The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.  I read this book almost two years ago, and I still can’t decide what I thought of it.  Sometimes I think it’s gorgeous and compelling and beautiful, and sometimes I think it’s underdeveloped and overrated.  But again, there is absolutely no arguing that the atmosphere in this novel is stunning.  I don’t even like ‘circus stories,’ usually, but damn did I ever want to dive straight into these pages and visit the Night Circus.

51yqc21t3nl-_sy344_bo1204203200_Fire From Heaven by Mary Renault.  This is usually my answer to the ‘which historical period would you visit’ question.  What I wouldn’t give to go back in time and see Alexander the Great in action.  He’s a historical figure who’s practically become mythologized, so you can’t help but to be curious about what the real person was like.


30319086If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio.  I can’t help it, I love the aesthetic of elite academia.  I would love so much to attend Dellecher Classical Conservatory, Rio’s fictional school of higher education, where students study theatre, Shakespeare, dance, art, etc…  I can’t remember if classical languages is a department at Dellecher, but if it is, that’s definitely what I would do.  Continuing my studies of Latin in a vaguely pretentious environment like that is the aesthetic dream.

Which fictional universes do you want to be a part of?  Comment and let me know!

Ultimate Harry Potter Tag


Happy 20th anniversary, Harry Potter!  I may not talk a lot about these books on my blog, but to say that Harry Potter changed my life would be an understatement.  I met a lot of my closest friends through a shared love for this series, and these books shaped my life in a pretty big way.  In honor of that, I decided to do this Ultimate Harry Potter tag, which I borrowed from Reads and Dreams.  This tag was created by Isabeau’s Literary Musings.


 1. Favourite book?

Order of the Phoenix.  Which I know is an unpopular opinion, but it’s always been my favorite.  I love how bleak it is but also how hopeful, I love the spirit of resistance in that book, and The Lost Prophecy is one of my favorite chapters ever (probably second only to The Forest Again.)

2. Least favourite book?

Without a doubt, Half-Blood Prince.  Every time I re-read it I like it less and less.  I’m interested in Tom Riddle’s backstory, but not much else.  There’s also too much Dumbledore.  I can’t stand Dumbledore.

3. Favourite movie?

My movie opinions are so unpopular, but it’s got to be Deathly Hallows part 2.  While it wasn’t a technically faithful adaptation, I felt like it captured the spirit of the book in a way that a lot of the other movies didn’t, including Deathly Hallows part 1, which was a very faithful adaptation scene-by-scene but which just lacked something for me.

4 Least favourite movie?

Either Prisoner of Azkaban because I loathe the tone and vibe of that movie, which was trying so hard to be dark and edgy it came across as utterly soulless, or Order of the Phoenix because I think it missed the point of that book entirely.

5 Favourite quote?

The Snitch. His nerveless fingers fumbled for a moment with the pouch at his neck and he pulled it out.

I open at the close.

Breathing fast and hard, he stared down at it. Now that he wanted time to move as slowly as possible, it seemed to have sped up, and understanding was coming so fast it seemed to have bypassed thought. This was the close. This was the moment.

He pressed the golden metal to his lips and whispered, “I am about to die.”


6. Favourite Weasley?

This is a weird answer, but actually, Percy.  I think he’s the most interesting and multifaceted, and his redemption arc breaks my heart.  I think it’s important to remember how young he was when he was seduced by this Big Important Job which essentially manipulated him away from his family.  (He is not actually Percy the cat’s namesake, though.)

7. Favourite female character?

It has to be Hermione.  She’s the first character that I felt really connected to, and I admire her bravery and loyalty.

8. Favourite villain?

You know, one of my favorite plot twists in the series has always been the reveal that Goblet of Fire-Moody is Barty Crouch Jr., so I’m going to go with him.  But also Tom Riddle/Voldemort.

9. Favourite male character?

Harry Potter.  Harry Potter always has been and always will be my favorite Harry Potter character.

10. Favourite professor?

McGonagall.  I fucking love her.


11. A, Wash Snape’s hair, or B, spend a day listening to Lockhart rant about himself.

B.  It would be amusing.  Lockhart is actually one of my favorite comedic characters in the series.

12. A, duel an elated Bellatrix, or B, an angry Molly

B.  Bellatrix still scares me too much.

13. Travel to Hogwarts via A. Hogwarts Express or B. flying car.

A.  I’ve always wanted to ride the Hogwarts Express.

14. A, Kiss Voldemort. Or B, give Umbridge a bubble bath.

A., with the caveat that he looks like Christian Coulson as Tom Riddle.

15. A, ride a hippogriff, B, ride a firebolt

B.  I used to horseback ride, and the idea of my horse suddenly flying sounds utterly terrifying.  More control with a firebolt.


16. Is there a character which you felt differently about in the movies vs books?

While I never even cared about her all that much in the books, the movies utterly destroyed Ginny.

17. Is there a movie you preferred instead of the book?


18. Richard Harris or Michael Gambon as Dumbledore?

Richard Harris, though I’m not sure his performance would have fit the tone of the later films.  I’d be interested to see how that would have worked.  I hate Michael Gambon’s Dumbledore though.

19. Your top thing (person or event) which wasn’t included in the movie that annoyed you most.

Harry’s interview with Rita Skeeter in Order of the Phoenix.  It was such a seminal moment in Harry taking actions into his own hands while everything else was outside his control.

20. If you could remake any of the Potter movies, which would it be?

Order of the Phoenix.  Everything about that movie was wrong.


21. Which house was your first gut feeling you’d be a part of?


22. Which house were you actually sorted into on Pottemore (or another online sorting quiz)?

Gryffindor (lol), but on other online quizzes I always get Ravenclaw.

23. Which class would be your favourite?

I have always wanted to try Transfiguration.  But given that I was quite good at Latin in school I think I’d probably be good at Ancient Runes.

24. Which spell do you think would be most useful to learn?

Accio.  Ugh, so much envy for that spell.

25. Which character do you think at Hogwarts you’d instantly become best friends with?

Neville and Hermione.


26. If you could own one of the three Hallows, which would it be?

Invisibility Cloak.  There are way more real world applications for that than the other two.

27. Is there any aspect of the books you’d want to change? This can be a character, an event, anything.

This is an obvious answer, but, the epilogue.  I’ve reread the series more times than I can count (at least 10 times each), but I’ve only read the epilogue once.  Once was enough.

28. Favourite marauder?

Remus.  He’s the Harry Potter character I’ve always most identified with, and honestly, the only Marauder who I find very interesting.  I guess I’d like to know more about James.  Peter is vile, and (unpopular opinion to end all unpopular opinions) I cannot stand Sirius.

29. If you could bring one character back to life, which would it be?

Cedric.  This has always been my worst Harry Potter death.

30. Hallows or horcruxes?

Hallows.  I’m a little afraid of anyone who chooses Horcruxes for this.  Unless it’s like, which one you find more interesting.  That’s fair.  Anyone who would choose to make a Horcrux though is scary.

Tagging Steph, Hadeer, Chelsea, and Callum, because I’ve talked to all of you about Harry Potter, but also anyone else who wants to do this!