Callum McLaughlin created a fun new holiday tag, and I thought I’d go ahead and give it a go. ^-^ Thanks again for the tag, Callum!
Father Christmas: Name a book you received as a child that you treasure to this day.
Around the World In 80 Days, by Jules Verne. Classic adventure, with one of the most enigmatic heroes in all of literature. I love all of the characters, and the ingenious ways that Phileas Fogg gets around every obstacle. A big thanks to my Grandma, for giving 10 year old Jenn this great book for Christmas!
The ghost of Christmas past: Is there a book or series you like to revisit each year at Christmas time?
I love rereading my favorites, but I don’t think I have any particular to Christmas. There are a few books that I try to read every year. Top of the list would be Around the World in 80 Days, followed by Little Women and The Secret Garden. The stories are excellent, and the characters are old friends now. ^-^
Christmas tree: Name a series that reaches new heights with every entry.
I’m going to go with a new series that I started last year: The Clockwork Dagger, by Beth Kato. The genre is steampunk fantasy, with an interesting magic system and a badass heroine. Currently, there are only two books. Both are excellent, but she really knocked it out of the park with the second one. I can only imagine that further entries to the series will be even better! ^-^
Friends and family: Name a book with fantastic characters.
The Emperor’s Soul, by Brandon Sanderson. All of the characters really live on the page, and drive the story forward. I’ve seen full length novels that don’t develop their characters as well as this wonderful novella.
Decorations: Name a book with a gorgeous cover you would proudly display on your shelves.
Actually, the paperback version of The Emperor’s Soul is gorgeous. Other than that, I will always sing the praises Kinuko Y. Craft covers. They are ethereal and probably a bit magic. ^-^ It’s hard to choose among them, but a couple of my favorites are The Bards of Bone Plain and In the Forests of Serre, both by Patricia A. McKillip.
Christmas cards: Name a book that carries a great message.
This is always a hard question for me, because I feel that messages given by a book can be quite different for each reader. Still, when I think about a book with a definite message, The Great Good Thing always comes to mind. ^-^ For me it is a story about change. Change can be terrifiying, and it can bring awful things into your life; but ultimately, without change we stop being. Roderick Townley also has a lot of great things to say about imagination in this story, and how the things we cherish become a part of us that can never really be lost.
Ice and snow: Name a book that you were hoping to love but which ultimately left you feeling cold.
Without a doubt, The Book of Air by Marjory B. Kellog. It is the final book in her Dragon Quartet, of which I was a huge fan. The concept is so intriguing, and the first two books are so well done. Also dragons! At first this final book seemed to be going well, but then it turned into a bit of a slog. And, I couldn’t help but feel that the final series ending was a bit of a cop-out. With the least amount of spoilers and ranting possible: I really think that you shouldn’t be writing about a never-ending cycle of that type unless the characters figure out a way to end said cycle. It just leaves the reader (at least this reader) with no closure, and a horrible empty feeling. Bleh.
Christmas lunch: Name a book that was big and intimidating but oh so worth it in the end.
Here Be Dragons, by Shannon Kay Penman. This is a very old book that my Scholar found at a yard sale years and years ago. He bought it for me, mainly because it had dragons in the title, but it turned out to be a historical novel instead… about Wales, so he still did a good job! ^-^ The hardback version is daunting in size. It took me awhile to get up the courage to venture into it. I’m glad I did though! The writing is good, and I loved all of the characters. Although, I wanted to scream at a couple of them at certain points. XD Worth the long read.
Mince pies: Name a book you found sweet and satisfying.
Water: Tales of Elemental Spirits, by Robin McKinely and Peter Dickenson. There were only six stories in this collection of shorts, but each one was a delicious treat. Their second elemental anothology, Fire, is on my list of books to buy ASAP!
Presents: What book do you wish you could give everyone to read?
Hard to pick just one of these ^-^ Of the books I’ve read this year, I’d have to say Wonders of the Invisible World, by Patricia A. McKillip. Not only are the shot stories collected in this anthology excellent, they also range widely in the fantasy genre. I think there are at least one or two to love for just about everyone.
Spreading the festive cheer: Tag some friends to help spread the festive bookish love.