Top 10 Reasons Why I Love The Harry Potter Fandom

Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is ‘Fandom Freebie’ and I’ve decided to list my top 10 reasons why I love the Harry Potter fandom and why I think it’s the best.

1. It’s been around for the longest time – and is still going strong!

The Harry Potter fandom started way before sites like Twitter and Tumblr were around to make it easy to keep up to date with everything going on in your fandom. I was only very young at this point, so I don’t remember it well, but I’m amazed at how long people have been obsessed with Harry Potter for.

2. We’re getting new content!

Although it’s not in the way that a lot of fans would like (a marauders book series would be really great, please and thank you), it’s still so incredible that after all this time, we’re still get43db6bf808bd1602f27388e0eaff51d1ting new Harry Potter related content. With Pottermore, the Cursed Child play and the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movies, it’s safe to say that the magic isn’t gone yet, and I doubt it ever will be. In June, it will have been 20 years since that first book, Philosopher’s Stone, was published and changed so many lives. I’m truly grateful that after all this time we still, as a fandom, have new things to look forward to. I hope it never ends.

3. There are soooo many ships!

shipFrom your canon ships such as Romione and Hinny, to your non-canon ships such as Wolfstar, Drarry and Dramione, the Harry Potter fandom has it all. We may not always agree with certain ships (*cough* anything involving Snape *cough*), but at the end of the day, there will almost always be someone else in the fandom who ships the same pairing as you. You will never be alone.

4. The sheer amount of people in the fandom

The Harry Potter fandom is huge and there are so many different people within it. fa66551feb23dca4bc09b9268162508cThere are people from all over the world, of all different ages. People who weren’t even born when the first books were published. I think it’s truly amazing how many different people there are, who have all been united through their love of Harry Potter. That is truly beautiful. Furthermore, there are so many people in the fandom, that there is bound to be someone else out there who shares your opinions on the series. Whether that’s a certain ship or something you wish they’d put in the movies, you’re bound to find someone who agrees with you, and that is wonderful.

5. Harry Potter is the gateway fandom

Once you join the Harry Potter fandom, there is no going back. One minute you’re just a Potterhead, and the next minute you’ve suddenly developed an obsession with Shadowhunters, Sherlock or Percy Jackson (or all three, all at once!). Once you become a Potterhead, you become involved in more and more fandoms until you forget what your life was like before you discovered this crazy part of the internet.

6. There is sooo much fanfiction and fanart out there

Seriously, there’s loads. I never really used to be that interested in fanfiction – I’d read a couple but decided it wasn’t really for me. That is until I read wolfstar text talk last summer on AO3, on a complete whim, and fell in love with it. I literally did nothing for 2 whole days except read that fanfiction. I was completely obsessed. And when I finished it, it hit me so hard, it was like finishing a book series and not knowing how to continue. So I read more and more fanfiction and now there’s no going back. The people who write this stuff, and the people who make such beautiful fan art are beyond talented, and we’re so lucky that they decide to share their talents on the internet. I think it’s a great thing, to be able to escape reality for a while by jumping into a new story with characters that you already know and have fallen in love with. I love it.

7. The Harry Potter cast love it just as much as the fandom does

It makes my heart so happy to be scrolling through twitter and see a Harry Potter related tweet from a cast member. It’s been six years since the last movie premiered, and the fact that the cast are still obsessed with the story and the world is amazing to me. I think a lot of other actorsScreenshot_20170401-203456 don’t really like it when they’re only ever recognized for one major role that they did, but the Harry Potter actors really don’t seem to mind when they’re recognized as their Harry Potter character, and I think that’s really great. The cast grew up on those movies, just the same as we grew up with the books and movies, so I guess it makes sense that it means just as much to them as it does to the fandom.

8. I grew up with Harry Potter

I’ve seen it being said many times on the internet, and it’s so true – every child should grow up alongside a good book series. That’s what Harry Potter was to me. And I know it was the same for so many other people. Personally, it’s Hermione who has really shaped me into the person I am today. As a child, I wanted to be just like her, and that made me work really hard in school. I wanted to know everything and I read so many books, simply because of how much I loved this character. I strongly believe that if I hadn’t grown up alongside Hermione, I wouldn’t be as academic as I am now. I wouldn’t have done as well in school and I probably wouldn’t be at university right now. Hermione was my inspiration. Every little girl deserves a Hermione.

9. I’ve made so many friends through bonding over Harry Potter

It’s so much easier to make friends if you find someone who has similar interests to you, and for the majority of my friendships, our shared love for Harry Potter is what brought us together. I think it’s really beautiful how being a fan of something can help create friendships. There have been many times where I’ve sat for hours with friends, discussing things related to Harry Potter. I love that I have people to get excited with when there is Harry Potter news, and people to discuss my theories and opinions with. I have made some really great friendships through Harry Potter and I’m beyond grateful for them.

10. Harry Potter has been there for me through the bad times in my life

Whenever things have gotten difficult or stressful, I have always turned to Harry Potter as a way to escape and find some comfort in a magical world with familiar characters that I love. It has sort of become a tradition of mine now that the night before every results day (where I find out my results for that year’s exams) I reread a Harry Potter book, to help calm me down. And it works. In my opinion, there are few things that can’t be made at least a little more bearable with a Harry Potter re-watch, re-read, or even just scrolling through the Harry Potter tag on Tumblr. For getting me through some pretty bad times, Harry Potter will always have a special place in my heart.

So, those are the top 10 reasons why I love the Harry Potter fandom so much. I would love to know in the comments what your favourite fandom is and why you love it so much.

Thank you so much for reading,

Chloe 🙂 x

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April 2017 TBR

So, I’ve decided to start doing monthly TBRs (to be read) and wrap ups on my blog, inspired by Booktube. I think this will be a good way to narrow down my options, as sometimes it can take me days (even weeks) to decide on my next read. I’m also hoping it will motivate me to get a bit more reading done, as I would really like to get my TBR pile down by a considerable amount. That being said, I’m not always the best at following through with plans like this, and I can be a bit of a mood reader at times, so we’ll see how this goes…

I’m going to keep my list quite short this month. I do have a 4 week break from uni coming up, however most of that time will be spent studying because I have exams quite soon afterwards, so I don’t want to put too much pressure on myself to read a load of books.

1. Everything, everything – Nicola Yoon 

Live life in a bubb20170325_235204le? Or risk everything for love?

Maddy is allergic to the world. She hasn’t left her house in seventeen years.

Olly is the boy next door. He’s determined to find a way to reach her.

Everything, everything is about the crazy risks we take for love. 

I’m really excited to read this! It seems like a cute, short, fluffy contemporary that will be easy and fun to read, which is exactly what I need this month! Plus, this book is being turned into a movie so I really want to read it before the film comes out. I also have a friend who really enjoyed this and I trust her opinions, so hopefully it will be good!

2. World After (Penryn and the End of Days #2) – Susan Ee

The survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what’s left of the modern world.20170325_235113

When a group of people capture Penryn’s sister Paige, thinking she’s a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. As Penryn searches the streets of San Francisco looking for her, she’s drawn into  the heart of the angels’ secret plans, where she learns the horrifying extent to which they are willing to go. 

Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can’t rejoin the angels, but when faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?

I recently read Angelfall and really enjoyed it! You can read my review here. The first book was very fast paced and action packed, I was able to fly through it, so I’m hoping that book two will be similar. I can’t wait to revisit this world and I’m really interested to see where Susan Ee takes this series!

3. Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda – Becky Albertalli

20170325_235139Straight people should have to come out too. The more awkward it is, the better.

Simon Spier is sixteen and trying to work out who he is – and what he’s looking for.

But when one of his emails to the very distracting Blue falls into the wrong hands, things get all kinds of complicated. 

Because, for Simon, falling for Blue is a big deal…

I’ve had this book on my TBR pile for ages and I think it’s about time I finally picked it up. Especially since this book is also becoming a movie soon! I’ve seen so many great reviews about this and I think it sounds like something I will definitely enjoy! I’m also really excited about reading more books with LGBTQIA+ main characters as this representation is very much needed.

So those are the three books that I’m currently planning on reading in April. I’d love to know what books you’re planning on reading this month, so feel free to leave a comment below!

Thank you so much for reading my blog, I really appreciate it.

Chloe 🙂 x

A Court Of Thorns And Roses Review (SPOILERS!!)

I recently finished A Court Of Thorns And Roses by Sarah J Maas (I know, everyone and their mother has probably already read this book) and I absolutely loved it! It was such a gripping story and even when I wasn’t reading it, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I fell in love with the characters and I’m now far too attached to them! The world was so incredible and 20170329_163154every time I picked up this book it was like I was really being whisked away to Prythian. I loved how much detail Sarah went into with everything. The world building was on point, and the backstories to her characters were amazing and so clever – everything made sense in the end and wrapped up so nicely. The ending left me wanting more but also concluded the first story really well, so there were very, very few unanswered questions. I’m now going to discuss some of my thoughts and theories in more spoilery (yes I just made up a word) detail, so if you haven’t read ACOTAR, then please do so before reading on. I can’t recommend this book enough. Prepare for some serious fangirling below.

So the first things I want to discuss are the Beauty and the Beast parallels within ACOTAR. I knew it was a Beauty and the Beast retelling before I began, and I loved seeing how this well-known story was incorporated within this brand new world. I think it was done so cleverly. The plot was definitely very similar to begin with – Feyre is forced to leave her family home to live with Tamlin (the beast), Tamlin’s powers mean he has a beast form, and the whole deal with the curse. However I loved that Sarah put her own twist on things. For example, Belle loves reading and is obsessed with books, but Feyre is illiterate. I thought this was a really fun alteration and I loved how the art gallery was Feyre’s equivalent to Belle’s library. All in all, I loved how Sarah managed to take the story of Beauty and the Beast and put it in her own world. She really made the story her own, and even though I knew the story of Beauty and the Beast, I was still shocked and surprised at several points throughout ACOTAR.

I also found the faery politics so interesting. We have seven courts, each with a high lord who rules over that court and has special powers. There are high fae, and then there are lower fae. It was so interesting to see how the faeries were ranked and to get a small glimpse at some of the tensions between courts. I loved finding out about Lucien’s back story in the autumn court and how the summer court had rebelled against Amarantha. We also learn a bit about Hybern (ruled over by a king) and the tensions between Hybern and Prythian which have been growing for centuries. I feel like this is definitely going to come into play later on in the trilogy.

One of my favourite parts of the book was Feyre’s third task. When Feyre is brought into the throne room that final time, she is faced with 3 faeries (their faces covered to begin with), each with an ash wood dagger. She has to stab all 3 innocent faeries with the daggers in order to complete the deal. Whilst this scene was quite horrifying to read, I loved how it was done. I feel like in most books, the main character always finds a way to get out of situations like this. There’s always some sort of loophole so that they don’t have to break their morals by killing an innocent person. I was really shocked when Feyre actually killed those first two faeries. I thought this was very brave of her character and I loved that Sarah wasn’t afraid to do this. She didn’t whimp out and offer her main character a get out of jail free card. She did what she had to do and I really appreciated this as it was one of the things that really set this book above the rest for me. I was on the edge of my seat throughout this whole scene, and I was convinced that one of the faeries was going to be Alis somehow. I was so relieved when the only female was revealed, and it wasn’t her. And then of course, the final faery was revealed to be Tamlin and I was so shocked I actually shouted at my book. I think Feyre was so clever for figuring out all the subtle little clues she’d overheard throughout the book and piecing them together in a theory and just going with it. It was crazy.

Characters

At the beginning of the story, we see Feyre’s family – and I hated them. Her sister’s were the biggest spoiled brats imaginable and it was infuriating to read about them. They had no appreciation for all that Feyre had done and sacrificed, just to keep them alive. They just complained the whole time and fought over what little money Feyre managed to earn, even though it was clear that Feyre was most in need. I did like how we got to revisit them and found out that Nesta had tried to go after Feyre, This redeemed her character a little for me, but I still don’t particularly like her. She was incredibly stubborn and even if she did love Feyre deep down and would be willing to go after her, I still can’t excuse her actions in the beginning.

I really liked reading from Feyre’s perspective and felt she was a great main character. I loved how strong she was and how much she was willing to do to stick to the promise she made to her mother, to look after her family, even though she received little gratitude in return. I also loved her determination and how she was willing to die in order to try and save Tamlin. She was incredibly brave. I loved how clever she was and the way she was always plotting her escape – she was always trying to think one step ahead. Occasionally she did annoy me when Tamlin and Lucien would tell her not to do something or to stay in her room (for good reasons) and she would just ignore them, putting herself in danger. But all in all, I think she was a great main character, and I did really like her.

I loved Tamlin so much! I loved how he cared so much for Feyre. His attempts at flirting with her in the beginning were so awkward that they were absolutely adorable, and I found it hilarious when Feyre just completely shut him down. It was so cute how he took her on little dates to the glen and that lake made of starlight. I loved how he was so protective over her and did everything he could to keep her safe in Prythian. He was also clever enough to allow her to overhear the things that she needed to overhear, and I loved that he trusted her to figure them out when the time came. I also loved how he made sure her family were taken care of and regained their wealth. In the beginning, I realise that some of his actions were a little bit problematic. He did forcibly remove Feyre from her family, all because of the curse. He only took her to Prythian to begin with because of that curse, not because he cared for her. He had reasons for his actions and a motive behind trying to get Feyre to love him. But I still can’t help but love his character.

Lucien was one of my favourite characters. I loved him so much. I loved his banter with Feyre and the sarcastic comments they shared. He definitely had the best lines of dialogue in the book and some of the things he said made me laugh aloud whilst I was reading. I loved his reactions when Feyre and Tamlin were flirting at the dinner table, I thought he was hilarious. Although it did take time for him to warm to Feyre, I loved how their friendship developed in the end, and how much Feyre grew to care for him. She gave away her name to Amarantha to save his life, and Lucien risked so much in order to help her during the tasks. His back story was so tragic it breaks my heart, and I really hope he finds happiness in the next books.

Rhysand was such a fascinating character, and one of my favourite kind to read about. I love characters which have a bit of a dark side to them, and you’re not really sure whose side their on – which is exactly what I felt Rhysand was like. Some of his actions were beyond creepy. Like how he embarrassed Feyre by sharing all of her ‘more intimate’ thoughts in front of Tamlin, and how he forced Feyre to sell herself to him for one week of every month for the rest of her life, in exchange for healing her arm. It creeped me out how he would have her body painted so he would know if someone else had touched her (this was kind of justified in the end – so Tamlin would know he only ever touched her waist and arms – but it’s still super creepy to me!) and the way he would drug her so she didn’t remember what she’d done during the night. It just didn’t sit right with me at all. But then he would do good things, like saving her life (and Lucien’s) during the second task, and how he turned on Amarantha at the end and helped her to be defeated. I’m not convinced even Rhysand knows whose side he was on. His backstory of how he ended up as Amarantha’s whore was so interesting and it really made me sympathize with him. I’m so conflicted with my feelings towards him. He’s such an intricate character and there is so much we don’t yet know about him. I’m really looking forward to finding out more about him in the next book.

Finally, Amarantha was such an interesting villain. She was cold-hearted, merciless and brutal. I loved finding out about her backstory, with her sister Crythia and her human lover, Jurian, who had betrayed them during the war. It really made her seem real to me, and I could understand her motives so well. Her actions were terrible, of course, but her motives were so understandable, it was quite scary. It was so creepy how she wore the necklace made out of Jurian’s finger bone, and the ring made form his eye, trapping a part of his soul in there so she could continue making him suffer. It was horrifying and really made her seem so much more bloodthirsty and terrifying. She was such a well-developed villain, Sarah did such a good job with her.

My Theories

So, I have a few theories about what is going to happen in the next books. These are just some of my thoughts and opinions, I have no idea if I’m on the right tracks or completely wrong, but I’m really excited to find out!

  1. I think that the King of Hybern (who is Amarantha’s father, if I’m remembering correctly) will be mad at Tamlin and the other High lords and faeries of Prythian for killing his daughter, and this is going to spark some sort of conflict between Prythian and Hybern
  2. There’s going to be a war between Prythian and Hybern, and the mortal realm are going to be involved some how as well. I feel like this won’t happen until the third and final book, and if it does, it’s going to be very bloody and I feel like quite a few characters that I love are going to die.
  3. Feyre is going to be permanently affected by being made to kill those innocent faeries in the third task. I think she’s going to feel incredibly guilty and it will take a long time and a lot of help for her to come to terms with it. I feel like she might try to shut Tamlin out and deal with it all on her own – which is a bad idea.
  4. I think that at the end of ACOTAR, when Rhysand was saying goodbye to Feyre and suddenly he looked really shocked, he realised that she was his mate (as it described in the beginning that some fae find their ‘mate’ and a sort of bond is formed between them). I don’t know how I feel about this. I really like Rhysand’s character as he’s very interesting, but I don’t want him to end up with Feyre. I think that Tamlin is much better for her. And I really hope that there isn’t some sort of love triangle. I feel like Feyre will be spending a lot of time with Rhysand in the night court in book 2… It will be really interesting if Sarah can pull this off though, because I don’t think I’ve read many books where the main character has more than one real love – but that’s more like real life, isn’t it? And if she can get me to ship Feyre and Rhysand when right now, I am a hardcore Feyre and Tamlin shipper, I will be very impressed!

Overall, this was probably my favourite book I’ve read so far this year, and it’s possibly a new all time favourite as well. I’m so glad I finally picked it up! The characters were amazing, the world building was fantastic and the plot was so clever. I would definitely recommend this book, especially if you love high fantasy or Beauty and the Beast! I can’t wait to continue on with this series.

If you’ve read ACOTAR then I’d love to know what you thought in the comments below. (Please no spoilers for ACOMAF!!) Thank you so much for reading my review!

Chloe 🙂 x

Angelfall review (mild spoilers!)

I recently finished reading Angelfall by Susan Ee. I am very late to the party with this one, and it has been on my to be read pile for years. Going into it, I was really unsure about whether I would like it. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book about angels (unless TMI counts?), much less a 20170221_171130book about evil angels. Also, I feel like the post-apocalyptic/dystopian craze has really fizzled out, and I wasn’t sure whether I would still enjoy reading a story of this genre. That being said, I was pleasantly surprised with this book!

In Angelfall, angels have come down to Earth, caused mass destruction and killed most humans, with the aim of wiping out humanity. The surviving humans are scared, hungry, and have pretty much given up all hope. Our main character is a girl called Penryn, and one day she witnesses a fight between some angels. Her sister gets taken by them and Penryn vows to do whatever it takes to rescue her sister, even if that includes rescuing an angel, severely wounded from the fight, and using him for information that can lead her to her sister.

I really enjoyed reading from Penryn’s perspective. In some respects, she was a typical strong YA female lead. But there were certain parts of her character which really set her apart from the rest. No one had to teach her how to fight in the story. She’d been taking self-defense lessons previously. She knew how to win a fight, and she knew how to take care of herself. She also knew what she wanted – to get her sister back. She didn’t get caught up in trying to save the world or bring down the angels. She did what she had to do and she stuck to her goals, which I loved. I also loved that the romance was minimal in this book. There were a few moments where a romance plot could have developed, but I loved that this was never the main focus, as it is with so many other YA stories of a similar genre.

I also loved Penryn’s mum’s storyline. I think it’s quite rare for a character with a mental illness to be included in this type of story and it was so refreshing to see it in this book. I cannot speak for whether it was good or bad representation for people who suffer with mental illness, but I loved that this topic was included.

Raffe took a while to grow on me. I wasn’t sure whether I trusted him to begin with (which I guess was the point, as he was the enemy), but I loved his sarcastic comments and his dialogue with Penryn was very fun to read. His character was very interesting, and I would love to know more about his past. By the end of the book, it’s safe to say that I was a little in love with him…

I thought the pacing in this book was so well done. It went by so quickly and the story was so action packed, it was difficult to stop reading. The chapters were very short, which I really love because I feel as though I’m getting through the book faster. Also, the story was a lot darker than I had anticipated. There was quite a lot of violence, a fair bit of blood and gore, and the ending had me completely horrified.
It definitely kept me on the edge of my seat!

The only negative thing I have to say about Angelfall is that I wish we had gotten a few more explanations. Like why are the angels even on Earth? What are their motives for causing such destruction? I also would like to know more about ‘angel politics’ which is mentioned a few times in the book and I feel like it is a key element of the story that I wish I knew more about. I felt like, as a reader, I was just dumped into the middle of the story with very little explanation about the world, and I had to figure out what was going on before I could start fully enjoying the story. However, this is the first book in a trilogy, so I’m hoping we’ll get some more explanations in the following books.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Angelfall. It was a refreshing take on the dystopian/post-apocalyptic genre and it was done really well. The pacing, the characters and the action-packed plot made reading this novel a really great experience. I gave it 4 stars on goodreads and I would definitely recommend it, especially if you want something fast-paced that you can fly through, and don’t mind a more sinister storyline. I can’t wait to read the next book!

Thanks so much for reading! If you’ve read Angelfall, I’d love to know what you thought in the comments!

Chloe 🙂 x

Top 3 books I read in 2016.

2016 hasn’t been the best reading year for me. So far I have only managed to read 23 books! However, I don’t feel too disappointed with this number as this year has been crazy in for other parts of my life. I finished my A levels this year and started university, which has definitely taken some adjusting to. I’ve also been focussing more on spending time with my family and friends, so I’ve spent a lot less of my free time shut in my room reading, which I’m completely fine with. Of course I will always love reading, but sometimes it’s important to remember that there is more to life and not all of your responsibilities should be ignored! That being said, I did read some great books this year, and here are my favourite 3:

1. Carry On – Rainbow Rowell

Carry On is essentially Rainbow Rowell’s take on the fanfiction written by Cath in her book, Fangirl, about the fictional equivalent of Harry Potter. It sounds very confusing but I can assure you that Carry On is not. It follows the story of Simon Snow during his final year at Watford School of Magicks, and according to his mortal enemy Baz, Simon is the worstimg_0671 chosen one to ever be chosen. I loved the characters so much and watching them develop was amazing. The magic system was so interesting to learn about, and the romance… OMG the romance! It was everything I wanted and more. Rainbow’s writing is just so addictive and I found it so hard to put this book down. There were a couple of unanswered questions at the end, but if you’ve read any of her other books you will probably be prepared for this. Overall Carry On was a fun, lighthearted take on fantasy, with characters that you can easily fall in love with. It really reminded me of why I love reading and is definitely a new all time favourite.

2. The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus was actually the first book I read in 2016, and it has definitely stuck with me. img_0927With this story, I feel like the less you know going into it, the better. All I will say is that the novel centres around a mysterious circus, which suddenly appears in certain places around the world, and disappears just as suddenly. The atmosphere of this book was truly magical. I’m not sure I’ve ever read anything like it. There were so many characters that were very complex and interesting to learn more about and the plot was so intriguing. The writing in this book was incredible and the descriptions were so good I felt as though I could actually smell, hear and see the things which Erin was describing. I really felt as though I had been transported to a different world whilst I was reading it. Overall this novel was just immensely beautiful and I would highly recommend it to anyone.

3. The Mortal Instruments – Cassandra Clare

Okay so this one is sort of cheating because it’s a whole series and not just one book, but I couldn’t possibly pick a favourite. I am also aware that everyone and their mother has already read this series and I am very late to the party. But if by some chance you don’t know what these books are about, they’re urban fantasy and timg_0930hey follow a group of people called shadowhunters, who hunt demons. There is a complex cast of characters in this series which I fell in love with. There are multiple romances, family issues, and an insane plot with lots of twists and turns. Cassandra also incorporates some political issues into this series which I found very interesting to read about. I don’t know why I waited so long to read this series, but it was fantastic! I love the shadowhunter’s world and I can’t wait to return to it in the Dark Artifices and the future shadowhunter series that Cassandra is publishing. I am so glad I finally picked up this series and can now join in on all the hype surrounding it.

So those were my top 3 books of 2016. I would love to know what your favourite books of 2016 were, so feel free to leave a comment below. Thank you so much for visiting my blog! I will have another post up soon.

Chloe 🙂 x