Wednesday, February 18, 2015
(You knew this one was coming.) One of the hardest things to do is explain to somebody how much you love your favorite book. It's almost impossible to accurately and eloquently explain the passionate love you have for it without USING ALL CAPS OR TONS OF EXCLAMATION POINTS AND EMOTICONS OR TYPING GIBBERISH LIKE AKLJSDOGIH!!!!! But seriously, everything about this series is close to perfection (and the only reason why I say "close to perfection" is because I don't believe any book or movie or work of art of any kind can ever be perfect, no matter how amazing). The unique characters, the attention to detail, the backstories of each character (even if you don't learn them until playing Pottermore), and the storytelling just astounds me. If I had to pick one thing that inspired me to become a reader, it would be this series. I first finished the Harry Potter books when I was seven, and I haven't stopped rereading them since. Each time I read it (or listen to the audios by Jim Dale, which are also incredible), I pick out bits of foreshadowing or details I hadn't noticed before. I fall in love with it over and over again and never get tired of reading it. Hogwarts feels like my home and the characters feel like my family. It's the series I go to whenever I want to escape or simply just curl up next to the fire and dive into another adventure with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. I think we all that one book or that one series that stays with us forever, no matter the circumstances, and Harry Potter is that series for me.
Hermione is the best. She's my favorite character in Harry Potter, and probably my favorite character ever. She has it all: Smarts, wits, loyalty, bravery, sarcasm, friendship, and all around awesomeness. In all the adventures she, Ron, and Harry have, she's usually the one who figures out the mystery. And she knows everything about everything. Harry may have defeated Voldemort in the end, but Hermione certainly helped him along. A lot. She's my fictional hero. Also, I can't think of a better person to portray her than Emma Watson.
Like I mentioned before, Hogwarts feels like my home. When we went to Harry Potter World at Universal Studios a few years ago, my favorite part was getting to walk through Hogwarts. I'd pictured it so many times while reading the books and seen it on the big screen, but actually getting to go there?! It was awesome. I'm pretty sure I grinned the entire day. How cool would it be to have paintings that talked, staircases that moved, secret passageways behind tapestries or under statues, and a ceiling that looked like the night sky? If I could actually go to school there, I would. I'd be in Ravenclaw, of course, and play as a Chaser for the Quidditch team.
This one pretty much goes without saying. :) I'm a happy person. I enjoy being happy. Simple things make me smile (books, chocolate, the theme song to my favorite TV show, sunshine). A day doesn't go by without me laughing at least once. My brother is usually the one cracking the jokes that make me spew water across the table. (Yeah, dinnertime's fun at our house.)
The Hunger Games
This was the first dystopian book I read, and I am so glad I did. I never knew such a genre existed before reading this series. It was one of the longest books I'd read in less than a day. I started it the night I got it and finished it the next morning. Same with Catching Fire and Mockingjay. It's also the book that made my best friend, Kirsten, like reading. My dad's taken me to see all the movies (which are fantastic), and I read The Hunger Games five times in a week before going to see it. That's how excited I was.
I tried reading Twilight and couldn't get past the Amazon sample, so I didn't think I'd ever read The Host. But then I saw the trailer for the movie, had it recommended to me by Kirsten later that week, and had to pick it up. It was so good. Sure, Stephenie Meyer's writing isn't the best, but she's a great storyteller. I fell in love with her characters right away and couldn't put it down. I read all 620 pages of it in two days. The movie was a good adaptation, but didn't do it nearly enough justice. If you like dystopian books, this one is a great choice.
"The Hunger Games" albums
I love the style of music that's featured on these albums, particularly the first two. "Safe and Sound" is my favorite song because of it. The dark, haunting, and sometimes somewhat creepy songs fit the theme of the movies perfectly. They also make for great inspiration when I'm writing. I've used many songs from the albums on my book soundtracks. It also introduced me to The Civil Wars, one of my favorite bands, after I heard "Kingdom Come."
"Here Comes the Sun"
This is my favorite Beatles song. It's light and happy and fun. This stands out to me as a summer song more than anything else, and I often listen to it while I'm at the beach or reading in the backyard.
Hugh Nicholson is a minor character in my 2014 NaNoWriMo novel, an MG fantasy book called August Knight and the Sword of Gold. He's an extremely old, very eccentric, narcoleptic wizard. He's adept in all magic and potions and would slay the dragon himself if it weren't for his arthritis. He's also known to fall asleep in the middle of his sentences, wake up, not remember what he was saying, and not even remember your name. He's called August a variety of names because of this, including Alan, Augustus, Augustine, Alex, and Audrey, all within five minutes. He always smells like pickles, too, though no one really knows why.
I'm so glad we homeschool. If we didn't, I wouldn't have nearly as much time to read and write as I do now. Plus, it's tons of fun. Our schoolwork is mostly playing games and going to lectures and getting together with our friends. We learn all sorts of stuff and have fun with it. (And we can stay up late and sleep in the next day if we feel like it.)
What's on your "h" list?