Welcome one, welcome all, to another Tag Thursday. This Tag Thursday is somewhat special as it’s the first Tag Thursday taking place during Blogmas, which means I made sure to pick a Christmassy book tag for today. It is fortuitous that I didn’t have to look very far to find something fitting the bill! And, yes, I am a broken record by now but I found this tag over at Thrice Read so be sure to head over there to check out Eden’s answers too! Let’s not waste any more time – let’s just get straight to it!
1. “You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch”: Name a villainous character you couldn’t help but love.
I wonder how many Leigh Bardugo and V.E. Schwab books I can mention in the course of this tag…
… let’s start, shall we? He wouldn’t think he’s a villain by any means (and the best villains never do) but the Darkling from Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha trilogy fits the bill nicely, I feel. Also the Dane twins from V.E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic because they’re just horrifying but they have SO much twisted fun with it (“hello, flower boy”).
2. “All I Want for Christmas is You”: Which book do you most hope to see under your Christmas tree?
I purposely didn’t buy this as soon as it was released just so that I could be gifted it at Christmas – Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Illustrated Edition. How can I be so sure I will see it under the Christmas tree? Well, I bought it on my parents’ behalf for them to gift it to me – it’s fine, they came up with this arrangement with me a couple of Christmases ago and it seems to be working out quite well for us all! If I don’t see this under the tree this year then something has gone spectacularly wrong.
3. “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”: Name a character that overcomes major obstacles and learns to believe in themselves.
Can we talk about the character development and growth of Paige Mahoney in Samantha Shannon’s The Bone Season series? It’s going to be a seven-book series but the growth of her character from book 1 to book 3 is already astounding. I’ve loved Paige from the start but I can’t help but love how strong she has become over the course of The Bone Season, The Mime Order, and The Song Rising – the latter in particular made her grow up and fill some boots very quickly and under pressure and she did it in very trying circumstances and I can’t wait to see where she ends up by book 7 of this series.
4. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”: a) Which character do you think would be on the top of the naughty list? b) Which character do you think would be at the top of the nice list?
I think a certain Mr Kaz Brekker from Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows would definitely be on the naughty list. I’m not sure if you can argue otherwise if you’re the head of a criminal gang, even if what you do is admittedly done to your own peculiar moral code and the people you scam probably deserve it. Still not sure that would fly with ol’ Saint Nicholas to be honest. As for the nice list… Rishi from Sandhya Menon’s When Dimple Met Rishi because, plainly put, Rishi is just one big squish and I want to cuddle him for the rest of forever. I shall call him squishy and he shall be my squishy!
5. “Frosty the Snowman”: Which book just melts your heart.
Aside from the fluffy romantic-y sort of book (which I tend to prefer in film format), I definitely had my heart strings well and truly tugged by Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book which doesn’t sound like it’s going to be a warm and fuzzy sort of book but some of the moments between Nobody and the graveyard ghosts are really quite heartwarming.
6. “Feliz Navidad”: Choose a book that takes place in a country other than your own.
Since I read a fair bit of YA fantasy and the occasional sci-fi, quite a lot of the books I read take place in countries other than my own – case in point, Saga by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples is so far removed from the UK that it’s set entirely in space!
7. “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”: Which holiday themed book do you use to spread the Christmas joy?
I’m not really much of a seasonal reader (as previously discussed here) so my “holiday reading” tends to basically lean even more heavily on fantasy, the sort of story I can while away many a winter-y afternoon with. For a very tenuous connection, I shall choose Claudia Gray’s A Thousand Pieces of You. The only reason for that choice is that one of the parallel worlds is Tsarist Russia and I definitely recall a scene with the main character traipsing through the snow. What says holiday more than snow? (Ok, I think she’s actually trying to run away from someone/something when she’s in the snow but shhh!) The reason it spreads joy is because, duh, parallel worlds are fun, of course they’re joyous. (Like I said, tenuous at best. I apologise.)
8. “Sleigh Ride”: Which fictional character would you choose to spend the holidays with (doesn’t have to be a love interest!)
Do you know who I think would throw a bloody great Christmas party? Nikolai from the Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. Hopefully the various trials and tribulations he faces over the course of said trilogy wouldn’t completely traumatise him to the point where he couldn’t enjoy a good ol’ holiday party. He’s just charm personified and I feel like any holiday events organised by Nikolai would be ones not to miss. He’d be the life and soul of any holiday but he’d make sure that everyone around him was having fun too. And, hey, if he wants to add in an element of romance to this arrangement then I wouldn’t necessarily say “no”.
9. “Baby it’s Cold Outside”: Which book that you didn’t like would you sacrifice to a fire to warm yourself up in the cold?
No question about it… let’s burn A Court of Thorns and Roses, shall we? I know, I know, there are a lot of tears right now but burning it in a fire would mean survival and that’s just a sacrifice I’m willing to make.
10. “Do you hear what I hear”: Which book do you think everyone should read?
Aside from the usual suspects I constantly mention (often in answer to tags such as this one) and my all-time favourite books, I’m going to say Amanda Palmer’s The Art of Asking. I found this book to be such a pleasant surprise to read and I found myself so completely engaged by Palmer’s way of viewing creativity and asking for the help of others in order to make things. It isn’t just a book for creative types, even though all creative types should definitely read this, it’s about how you connect and communicate with other people on a more fundamental level and it definitely made me think long and hard about the idea of “putting yourself out there” by asking someone to help you, whether that person is a friend, a family member, or a complete stranger. Well worth a read – and try the audiobook version if you can!
That’s it, folks, that was the Christmas Song Book Tag.
Did you enjoy the tag and want to participate yourself?
Then please consider yourself tagged by me!
I’m also specifically tagging friend/housemate Liz because she’s been looking for tags to do – consider yourself tagged too.