Reviews

THE HALLOWEEN BOOK TAG

Thanks to Lisa at Way Too Fantasy I discovered this fun, Halloween-styled bookish tag, originally created by Naomi the Book Lover on YouTube. 

And now, let’s grab a few pumpkins and start with the questions!

1. Carving pumpkins – what book would you carve up and light on fire?

No matter how far from my tastes a book could be, I would never subject it to such a destructive treatment, so I will take the question as merely allegorical: no book need fear bodily harm from me!  One of the novels I deeply disliked was Veronica Roth’s Divergent: this was one of the books that fueled my distrust for YA, because it touches on all the tropes that give the genre a bad name – a sort of Mary Sue main character who fails to garner my sympathy; her instant attraction toward a mysterious, brooding guy; a world-building with some contradictions. Thanks, but no thanks…

2. Trick or treat – what character is a treat, what character is a trick? 

Speaking of treats, the first fictional name that comes to mind is that of Miles Vorkosigan, from the acclaimed Vor Saga by Lois McMaster Bujold, which I revisited for last year’s SciFi Month. I love the series and I greatly enjoy Ms. Bujold’s style, but Miles is a character whose mention never fails to bring a smile to my face.   As for the tricky character, I really love to hate Dan Wirth, the evil mastermind behind every dark deed in the Donovan series by W. Michael Gear: he’s a downright psychopath, but he’s also craftily intelligent, which makes him both dangerous and intriguing…

3. Candy corn – what book is always sweet?

That’s an easy one: Mary Robinette Kowal’s Glamourist Histories series never failed to deliver a delightful, immersive story where magic and and alternate version of Regency England mixed quite well with just that touch of romance that even a grumpy old crone like me 😀 cannot object to, since it’s handled unobtrusively and with skill into the main narrative.

4. Ghosts – what character would you love to visit you as a ghost?

I hope that does not mean a bona fide, bedsheet-covered and chain-rattling ghost!  That said, I would not mind having a good chat with Jean Tannen, from Scott Lynch’s Gentlemen Bastards series: I would offer him tea and cake (pumpkin cake, at that, since it’s Halloween!) and ask him about his adventures – especially those not featured in the books, because I’m sure there are many more that the author did not share with us…

Drawing by Kejablank (Camorr Wiki)

5. Dressing up in costume- what character would you want to be for a day?

No need to think about that: Chrisjen Avasarala, from the magnificent space opera series The Expanse, written by James S. A. Corey. Avasarala is a formidable lady, a shrewd politician and a veritable force of nature who can handle difficult situations with flair and cuss like a veteran dockworker. The latter side of her character has been downplayed a little in the TV series, but she nevertheless came across as the ass-kicking force of nature I admired from page one.

6. Wizards and witches – what is your favorite Harry Potter moment?

The descriptions of Hogwarths: they were always so vivid, so cinematic, that once they were translated into the big screen it felt as if the film-makers had been reading my mind for the creation of such a truly magical, atmosphere-rich place.

7. Blood and gore – what book was so creepy that you had to take a break from it for awhile?

Stephen King’s IT: I’ve always read horror and never had any… adverse effects from any situation portrayed in the books, no matter how ghastly, but the brand of horror displayed in this book, evil’s choice to visit it on children, the claustrophobic feeling of many passages, did leave a deep mark on my mind. As I’m fond of saying, since then I’ve never, ever, looked at a storm drain in the same way as before, or with the blessed lack of unease I had enjoyed until my encounter with King’s novel.

There is still time until Halloween! Pick this tag and share your pumpkin-flavored book musings!

26 thoughts on “THE HALLOWEEN BOOK TAG

  1. Great picture of Avasarala! I love her, too.
    I quite agree about Miles. 🙂
    I haven’t yet read that series from Kowal but I guess I should.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. And just like that I have added two new titles to my TBR. Kowal and Corey’s series seem both too good to pass! And the last time I added a book from one of your tag I hit jackpot and discovered Bujold’s universe! 😍

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I was looking for a halloween tag and this one is perfect! 😀
    Your little Divergent rant made me laugh, I read the trilogy when I was fifteen and I loved the first two books but I don’t think I will ever re-read them again, it’s better to remember them fondly lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great answers! That first question made me laugh out loud! 🤣
    And a reminder that I really need to finish the Glamourist books AND get on and read the Expanse. A readers work is never done! 😄

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jean Tannen would indeed be an excellent pick for an interesting conversation! He made me laugh so often in the first book. 😛 And yes… storm drains… Good thing our storm drains don’t allow for clowns to be hiding in out here! 😀 Awesome answers, Maddalena!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So glad you have fun with this tag! The Glamourist Histories became one of my favorite series over time, I loved all of their adventures and seeing them be strong through so many tough situations and learn to grow through them too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The dynamic of the relationship between Jane and Vincent was a delightful one, indeed, and that from someone like me who usually runs for the hills whenever romance is involved! 😉
      Kowal portrayed them so realistically that I was totally captivated.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, and later they are a very convincing married couple. One of the best things about the series! We don’t get to see many fantasy stories featuring married couples (that aren’t trying to kill each other haha).

        Liked by 1 person

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