Have you been listening to the Binge Mode: Harry Potter podcast? If not, get on that! Mallory and Jason are hilarious and I love their adult deep (deep!) dive into the HP universe. Anyway, my boyfriend and I have been listening to them all summer, and particularly during our cross-country road trip a few weeks ago. Travelling from Boston to Los Angeles took awhile, and Binge Mode kept us both laughing (and occasionally tearing up) as we drove. And then I remembered that LilyCReads on Youtube is vlogging her experience of reading Harry Potter for the first time. So I’ve been watching those videos too… All of this is to say that I’ve been in a very Harry Potter frame of mind lately.
Another favorite booktuber of mine, G at Book Roast, put together two amazing Harry Potter themed readathons this year. She made the first one as if you’re taking your O.W.L.s, and then the second is the N.E.W.T.s. So they build off each other because you’re only allowed to take N.E.W.T.s for the O.W.L. subjects you’ve passed. She put so much detail into creating these readathons, and I’ve been super bummed that I missed out on both of them (the O.W.L.s were in April and they just finished up the N.E.W.T.s in August). Here’s her announcement for the first Magical Readathon so you can see what I mean:
I was moping about this when I realized… All of the information is there, so why not just do the readathons myself?? I mentioned it on Twitter and Instagram, and a bunch of people thought it was a great idea and that they’d even be up for trying it themselves. So here we go! I’ll be sitting my O.W.L.s in September and then proceeding on to my N.E.W.T.s in October. Because – why not?
To achieve an Outstanding for the O.W.L.s one must pass at least five subjects. I’m pretty extra when it comes to readathons, so I’m attempting to pass all twelve subjects if I can. And I’m trying to primarily read books I already own on my Kindle to help me clear my ebook TBR.
Here’s my current O.W.L. TBR:
Ancient Runes | Read a book with a symbol on the cover | Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch
Arithmancy | Read a book with a number on the cover or in the title | 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke
Astronomy | Read a science fiction novel | The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James <– I’ve already finished this one! 3/5 stars
Care of Magical Creatures | Read a book that includes magical creatures or has a creature on the cover | The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley (dragon on the cover)
Charms | Read a fantasy novel | I haven’t settled on one yet as I have a boatload that could work for this. Possibly Destined a By the Fates novella by Patricia D. Eddy.
Defense Against the Dark Arts | Read a book about/featuring secret societies/clubs | Blood-Stained Tea by Amy Tasukada (features the Yakuza)
Divination | Read a book featuring prophecies | The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
Herbology | Read a book with a nature related word in the title | Thornfruit by Felicia Davin
History of Magic | Read a historical fiction book | I have a bunch for this too. Right now I’m considering: To the Bright Edge of the World by Eowyn Ivey, Justine by Lawrence Durrell, or Master and Commander by Patrick O’Brian.
Muggle Studies | Read a muggle non-fiction book | Thunder and Lightning: Cracking Open the Writer’s Craft by Natalie Goldberg
Potions | Read a book about or with alchemy | This is the only one I’ll have to deviate from my Kindle for. I just bought a second copy of The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss to annotate so I might use that because I know there’s alchemy in it. (And I desperately want to reread it.)
Transfiguration | Read a book dealing with transfiguration/shapeshifting OR read a book with a cat on the cover | Either my audiobook loan for Curiosity Thrilled the Cat by Sofie Kelly will come in, or I’ll finally read The Ring of Solomon by Jonathan Stroud featuring everyone’s favorite shapeshifting demon, Bartimaeus.
So there’s my tentative TBR. All books subject to change with my moods. Oh! And because I went the extra mile to think about it… If I went to Hogwarts and I got my Career Advice session, I’d choose to follow a path to become a wandmaker. I think that would be incredibly interesting as a profession.