Dumbledore’s Army Readathon Sign UP #DAReadAThon

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Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to Pottermore and J. K. Rowling, please don’t sue me.

Dumbledore’s Army once strived to keep Hogwarts a safe space for all students, despite the odds which were stacked against them. For the upcoming new year, I wanted to take a leaf from their book, and to remember to keep fighting -especially to keep the voices of everyone visible in my reading experience. Come join me and declare your allegiance for Dumbledore’s Army, we’ll take it one page at a time.

dareadathon-information

What: #DAReadAThon is a Harry Potter themed readathon, focusing on diverse (especially #ownvoices) books.

When: The readathon will begin Sunday 1st January and conclude Sunday 15th January, midnight to midnight – wherever in the world you’re based.

Who: Anyone can join, although it would be easier for you to write up your reviews and sign up posts if you had a platform such as a blog or a booktube. If you have a twitter or instagram account, please join in on the #DAReadAThon hashtag! You don’t have to be familiar with Harry Potter to join, but the prompts will make more sense to you.

How: You can sign up in this post right here, and start planning your TBR from today. Sign up will remain open for the duration of December.

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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Movie & Screenplay Review

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4-star

Title: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Author: J. K. Rowling

Rating: 4/5 stars

Goodreads

Book Depository // Dymocks // Booktopia


The review below is spoiler free! Please avoid commenting with big plot spoilers!

If I was a Niffler, I would not covet jewels or freshly minted coins – I would be looting the JKR’s brain for more Harry Potter content. Like all my fellow Potterheads, I can’t help but want to revisit the wizarding world. Simply rereading the book is not enough, I always want more – even though I am aware they will rarely meet my immense expectations for the series.

Needless to say, I was still amongst the first in line to queue up to purchase tickets to Fantastic Beasts. This was in spite of my decidedly mixed feelings on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. I ended up adoring Fantastic Beasts in spite of its many flaws. I think being able to experience the movie, rather than relying on a script alone, went a long way in making me appreciate this story. Not to mention that Newt Scamander is the Hufflepuff hero we’ve all been waiting for, and he deserves all of our love.

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Personally, the highlight of this screenplay and movie for me is the character of Newt Scamander. He’s at once the quintessential Hufflepuff and a unique character all his own. Remember when JKR explained why all the Hufflepuffs stayed for the final Hogwarts Battle? It wasn’t because they wanted glory, or power, they stayed because that’s what Hufflepuff do – because being good needs no reward. That’s Newt, you feel it every time he interacts with one of his creatures or champion for another character. I also love the dichotomy of his mild social awkwardness, standing right alongside with his confidence and conviction in his passion for magical creatures. Eddie Redmayne totally owned this role, bringing Newt to life with his charismatic and multifaceted performance – I don’t think I would have ended up loving Newt quite as much without Eddie.Read More »

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

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4-star

Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Author: J. K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, John Tiffany

Series? No. This is NOT the 8th book, OK.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Goodreads

Book Depository // Amazon // Dymocks // Booktopia


Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Hachette Australia in exchange for an honest review. I also bought my own copy the day of release because it’s Harry Potter and I can’t help myself.

I had originally intended to wait until #ReadThemAllThon to begin reading Cursed Child as my Thunder Badge entry. Alas, on the release day I could not help myself – after seeing a couple of photos on twitter of people attending the release party, I quickly ran out to the shops and bought myself a copy. I devoured the story twice in the space of 12 hours, and only my friend borrowing the copy prevented me from reading it a third time.

Note that I will be splitting this review into two parts. The first part is my general, non-spoilery thoughts on the script. The second part will be a spoiler filled section detailing exactly which parts of the script worked or didn’t work for me, and will be marked. If you haven’t had a chance to check out the Cursed Child, please be mindful when you are scrolling through this post to avoid spoilers!

My emotions in regards to the Cursed Child are wildly mixed. On the one hand, the trip down memory lane was beautifully nostalgic, and I teared up several times while reading the script. However, many of the plot points in this story are simply absurd and outlandish – I can barely believe that J. K. Rowling gave it the green light and asked fans worldwide to consider it an ‘8th book’. Although I loved many things about the play, it’s still a far cry from the original seven Harry Potter books.

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Potterhead July: Tales of Beedle the Bard and the Power of Stories

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First of all, I would like to thank you to every single person who has contributed a post or commented on a Potterhead July post – you’ve made July truly magical. We have less than a week left until the release of The Cursed Child, and I hope we will all love it as much as we loved the adventures of Harry Potter.

Here’s my own entry for the Potterhead July festival, admittedly several weeks late because I am horribly disorganized and got consumed by Pokemon GO. I also wanted to chance to finish rereading The Tales of Beedle the Bard before I completed this post because I wanted it to be a truly informed and comprehensive discussion on the function of fictional works – both within our real lives and within the world of Harry Potter.

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I remember my initial excitement over The Tales of Beedle the Bard, and how it made me felt closer to Harry Potter’s fantastical world. It felt right that young witches and wizards would also fall asleep to bedtime stories, and that these repeated stories should be more powerful than they seem. After all, isn’t this exactly what happens in real life? I have always loved books about stories, especially the ones that hid truths in plain sight or became more powerful with each telling. The Tale of the Three Brothers will eventually go on to become a fine example of this fact.

The wizarding’s world lack of fictional books prior to the reveal of Beedle the Bard have always struck me as odd. Here was a group of people living amongst the magic we Muggles could only dream of, yet they seemed utterly devoid of fictional imagination. Where was their equivalent for Tolkien, or Jane Austen, or J. K. Rowling? Entire generations of children grew up to be obsessed over Quidditch and love potion, where people poured over gossips penned by Rita Skeeter, yet where were the people in love with fictional universes? Hermione Granger, our resident bookworm, mentions only non-fictional biography or textbooks. Even Gilderoy Lockhart’s wildly fictitious accounts were based on the real life and works of other witches and wizards.

Naturally, the lack of fictional works in the world of Harry Potter had a very obvious explanation: it’s a gap in JKR’s immense world-building. To an avid fantasy reader like myself (and like most readers of Harry Potter), it’s an absence that made the wizarding world less believable – simply because I think a civilisation cannot exist in the absence of stories. Do wizarding folks simply not need fantasy because their life is literally magic? Do they not need grand legend and tales because, for them, Merlin and the philosopher’s stone are real? Somehow, I doubted this. When Tales of Beedle the Bard arrived, it saved me from a wizarding world identity crisis. It’s OK, everyone, they also grew up with stories, they also know of their power.Read More »

Potterhead July: Blog Festival Schedule

“Welcome to Potterhead July!”

PotterHeadJuly-Blog.pngThank you so much for the overwhelming and enthusiastic response to Potterhead July! Below is the schedule for all of July, and as you can see there are heaps of exciting posts ahead. For readers, you just have to kick back and enjoy the awesome as it rolls out. We have around 85 magical and thrilling posts coming your way!

For bloggers participating: please note the day you are scheduled and have your post ready on that date. I will be linking your post back to this masterpost, and help you promote it on Twitter as the month goes along.

Because I am bad at saying No: If you are still interested in joining us, I have a couple of slots left on dates in Week 4-5 with only two posts scheduled each, so if you message me, we might be able to work something out!

POSTING GUIDELINES:

  • Please post on your blog on the date specified on this schedule, if you are after any changes, message me via my contact form or twitter!
  • When you promote your post on social media, please use the Hashtag so your post will be visible to me and everyone following the tag.
  • I have provided some graphics template you can use on your blog post below! Click image for full size. You can edit them on Canva to add text e.g. your post title/blog name, I have a tutorial for Canva here. Four are in House Colours, and the other two are Purple for Magic & Rainbow for Diversity – or for anyone feeling Divergent 😉
  • There will me a  twitter chat on July 31st to celebrate the release of the Cursed Child (spoilers are apparently already out for this, but please resist!)

Read More »

Potterhead July Blog Festival Sign Up

As the release date for the Cursed Child draws closer, I wanted to write some blog posts focusing on Harry Potter and what it means to me. I asked around on twitter and several others wanted to join in, so I declare it Potterhead July Blog Festival Time!

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The Event

Each day between the 1st to 31st of July 2016, we will host a series of blog posts across all the different blogs, each discussing an element of Harry Potter that is near and dear to our heart.


How To Join

  • Sign up via the Google Form below, choosing your preferred dates of posting.
  • SIGN UP NOW CLOSED as we already have 80 people onboard. If you really want to be squeezed in please shoot me an email readatmidnightreviews at gmail dot com OR DM me on twitter (@readatmidnight).
  • Full schedule to be posted shortly after.
  • Anyone can join, as long as you have a blog to host your post on! I do not care whether you’re new or veteran, young or old, as long as you’re interested in Harry Potter.
  • I will maintain a directory of all the different posts somewhere on this page.

The Topics

I can write Harry Potter discussion prompts for days, but here’s a couple to get you thinking. You can obviously write your post on anything to your heart’s content.

Blog Post Prompts example:
1. Hogwarts Houses: Do they create division or unity?
2. Fandom-Created Shipping: What drives fan interpretations?
3. Snape: Villain or Hero? Thanks Rita Skeeter
4. Your head-canon of Maurauder days or new gen kids
5. How has HP shaped your reading experience.
6. House Pride Post: Which house are you in? Why do you love it?
7. Character Appreciation Post: write all about your fave!
8. New readers: experience on reading an instant classic of our time after it’s all over.
9. Hopes and Fears on HP spinoffs such as Cursed Child and Fantastic Beasts
10. Collector’s Showcase: let us see your book collection (we all know you have multiple editions of HP) and merchandise.
11. Diversity in Harry Potter: how do you feel about the post-series additions.
12. From Book To Screen: how do you feel about the movie adaptations and which was your favourite of the films?
13. Fanfiction Recs/Fan Art or Fan Graphics post.
14. Your journey with Harry: memorable life events revolving the book e.g. Release nights, signing, events, visiting Universal Studios.
15. From Muggles to Wizard: why do all muggleborn children like Hermione choose the wizarding world, can you imagine one that won’t?
16. Wizard VS Muggle bigotry and how the book dealt with it.
17. Slytherins & Their Portrayal in the book.
18. Sirius Black: Good Godfather?
19. Remus Lupin: the last of the Maurauders & his insecurities
20. How HP series deals with bullying: from the outright eg Snape to Harry & co. to the more subtle.
21. The Family Dumbledore made: his relationship with Hagrid and Harry.
22. Dumbledore’s Choices and Mistakes.
23. The Sorting: assign all your fave characters from other series to a House
24. Parallels: Between Harry/Voldemort, Harry/Neville, and all the other characters.

I would love to see varied posts but of course, you can choose whatever you’re most passionate about, I don’t mind double ups on post ideas!


Google Sign Up

Please fill this out if you’re interested in joining!


Hope to see you all there, I am already so excited to see everyone’s post! Let me know of any comments or questions on the form or in the comments below ❤ It would be a fantastic chance to meet some new bloggers and relive the magic before the release of Cursed Child!