books · General

The DNFs and TBRs on my shelf

This is my shelf in the almirah where I keep all my hardback books.

I was sorting through them today and found some books that I gave up on halfway and those that I haven’t yet started reading.

The DNFs

And I’m never going to finish this one i think, simply because his complete work is too extensive
I gave up on this one because the prose is not for me. I’m also always unable to fathom these old classics.
Again these books that are prestigious awards worthy are too complex or too dark for my liking.
I had bought this book bcoz I was fascinated by the movie based on it and my expectation was to experience the same in writing but it did not turn out to be like that.

The TBRs

I bought these two books at a second hand sale and I still don’t feel like opening them yet.

These two books we uncovered recently when my father-in-law was cleaning his bookshelf and he handed them over to me.

This one I bought at Gratitude Cafe and I’m sort of waiting to read it and putting it off at the same time.

Any ideas which book I should pick first?

Book Review · Reviews · Weekend Fun

Memorable Harry Potter Book Moments

I had just finished yet another Harry Potter book marathon when my husband suggested we do a HP movie marathon too. I had always stayed away from the movies on purpose before this (except for the Goblet of Fire movie), because I am a “the-books-are-always-better-than-the-movies” girl. And after being done with three-fourth of the movie marathon, my resolve is even more determined.

The movies.. well.. they barely contain a quarter of the magic that is sealed in the books. Granted there are length limitations for a movie but that takes away the brilliance of some scenes which deserve to be described in the same minute detail as they are in the books.

Sharing some of my memorable Harry Potter Book moments:

#1 Harry and Ron become friends with Hermione.

Harry, Ron and Hermione never actually speak or decide upon being friends. Infact, Harry and Ron start out by actually disliking her. But in this scene, when after they have saved Hermione’s life from the troll at Halloween and Hermione lies to Professor McGonagall to save Harry and Ron from punishment; there is an unspoken agreement and the three of them end up being best friends, organically. True, “There are some things you can’t share without ending up liking each other, and knocking out a twelve-foot mountain troll is one of them.”

#2 When Dumbledore awards ten points to Neville

Throughout the series, most people have never encouraged Neville, even while he tries to improve himself. So at the end of the first book, when Gryffindor ties with Slytherin for the House Cup and Dumbledore says, “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends. I therefore award ten points to Mr Neville Longbottom”; that moment was very well deserved and I could feel the deafening row of the Great Hall and visualise the Slytherin banners turning to Gryffindor as if it was actually happening around me.

#3 Harry sets Dobby free

When Harry tricks Mr Malfoy into handing Dobby a sock and the way the look of incredulous joy, disbelief and relief is described on Dobby’s face is one of my favourite moments. Top it with how Dobby goes all bad-ass on his ex-master and blasts him in a crumbling heap down the stairs with a firm, “You shall not harm Harry Potter!”.

#4 Crookshanks freezing the Whomping Willow

Gotta hand it over to the cleverest cat in the wizarding world. Crookshanks did some amazing stuff in the third year – what with making friends with ‘dog’ Sirius and identifying ‘rat’ Wormtail, stealing Neville’s passwords and when Harry and Hermione were desperately circling the Whomping Willow, bleeding and distraught, he just darted forward and freezed the tree with one paw! Ha-ha!!

#5 The First Triwizard Tournament

The Goblet of Fire is my favourite book for many reasons. I absolutely love each and every scene in this book but I am going to pick two for this list. The first being Harry’s faceoff with the Hungarian Horntail.

That was seriously cool bit of flying especially when Harry learns to master the Accio charm just the night before!! Didn’t think the Firebolt would come honestly. But it did and I loved the way Harry kept annoying and tantalizing the dragon, forcing her to finally spread her great black leathery wings and take flight while he dived and seized the golden egg with one hand.

#6 Voldemort’s return to his body

The entire chapter of Flesh, Blood and Bone was intriguing. The centre scene being Voldemort’s re-birth.

It’s not daily that you get to read about a Dark Lord rising. And the ritual was very mesmerising too. And when Harry stares into Voldemort’s inhuman face. It was all very eerie and cant-stop-reading at the same time. And well, Voldemort gave a great speech too!!

#7 Fred and George’s departure from Hogwarts

This is always going to be an iconic scene. All the firecrackers and mayhem and Umbridge running around soot faced was pretty satisfying to read. And when Umbridge cornered them, the twins couldn’t care less. They just raised thier wands, accio‘ ed thier brooms and flew off into the sunset to tumultuous applause. Even Peeves, who has never listened to any teacher, swept off his hat to them.

This is the stuff of Hogwarts legend!!

#8 Dumbledore’s death

Everything that happened in the events leading up to and after Dumbledore’s death were surprising and terrible to read about.

Dumbledore and Harry seeing the Dark Mark over the school; Dumbledore and Harry flying over the school boundaries while Dumbledore chants and lowers the enchantments in real time; Dumbledore freezing Harry under the Invisibility Cloak; Snape sweeping in and accessing the situation in a sharp moment; Dumbledore pleading with Snape; Snape blasting Dumbledore off the tallest tower; Dumbledore’s body flowing in a graceful arc, hanging suspended in mid-air for a second and then falling out of sight; Harry realising that he is now frozen in place in horror than than with a spell; Harry rushing towards Snape; Snape reminding Harry to close his mind even when he flees; Hagrid not believing that Dumbledore’s dead; Dumbledore’s body lying like a broken wax work at the foot of the tower; Fawkes’s final most beautiful and most haunting lament filling the grounds…

#9 Dumbledore’s funeral

Dumbledore’s funeral is a memorable scene for me from the books, not only because of the grand ceremony and the tributes paid to the great wizard but also because it was at Dumbledore’s funeral that Harry makes the decision of not returning to Hogwarts and Ron and Hermione tell him that they will come with him too. He also breaks up with Ginny and closing the last page on that book was closing a page unto Hogwarts itself.

#10 Dobby’s death

I still cry whenever I read this scene… Dobby did not deserve to die!! It was just unfair and so heart breaking.. I just cannot believe that fate can be so cruel.

Dobby rescuing Harry, Ron and Hermione from the Malfoy Manor; Harry realising Dobby is hurt; the silver knife handle protruding from the little elf’s chest; Dobby’s eyes glistening like shiny orbs and his lips forming his last words… “Harry Potter”.


Gift Ideas for Book Lovers

When deciding what to gift a book lover, we tend to begin and end with books. Though books are the safest bet, there are some other ideas that come to my mind.

1) Books

  • If they have been looking for a book for a long time, gift them that.
  • If they like a movie & there’s a book based on it, get them that.
  • If a new book is released by an author they like or the next book of a series they are reading is available, beat them to it and gift it to them.

The way we gift wrap a book also makes it look more enticing. I personally like wrapping the book in a neat brown package with a simple ribbon

Or wrapping it in a print paper.

2) Subscriptions

  • Get them a subscription to a magazine or newspaper that they read.
  • There are curated book services available now like the Big Book Box or 99 Bookscart that you can subscribe them to.
  • Best of all, if there is a library nearby, make them a membership.

3) Book Accessories

If they are for example, a Harry Potter fan, there are lots of fan merchandise that you can gift them – from T shirts to throw pillows to keychains.

To put in an effort, you can make them bookmarks by yourself.

4) A sponsored trip to a theme park. Now, I know, most of us can’t afford a trip to Disneyland or the Anne Frank House, but if they like a book that has a place featured in it, that’s in your country or state, you should definitely take them on a trip.

Or if their favorite book is being adapted to the silver screen, then take them for the movie.

5) A journal to write down thoughts about their books; A tote bag to carry their books around; Or a stand to keep their glasses on after they finish reading.

6) Make a personalized Bookshelf for them or even design crates for them to store their books.

7) Curate a list of books for them to read – similar to the way that we make a music playlist!!!

8) If they love listening to audio books, then get them noise canceling head phones or ear buds & download & gift some great audio books to go along with it.

9) A Kindle

I’m not sure how many people still purchase a Kindle but if someone owns one, you can give a book-themed cover for the Kindle.

10) If they love a fictional character, then find out what trait they love about them. For example, if the character drinks coffee; gift them a coffee machine or simply make them coffee in a mug and get it to them while they read 🍡; or if the character has bangs & they have been coveting one themselves, offer a haircut treat; or if the character wears sweatshirts, then gift them some.

I hope these ideas would be useful to gift your lovely Bookworms πŸ˜‡πŸ€“