Graphic Novels Reviews: Saga and Fables

Saga, Vol. 1 (Saga, #1)

Title: Saga
Author: Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Series: Saga Vol. 1
Publication: 23rd October 2012 by Image Comics
Genre: Graphic novel, Science Fiction and Fantasy.

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – A book recommended by one of your favourite authors.


 

The whole story centers around the question:

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As it turns out, two soldiers, from opposite sides from a never ending war, who look like this:

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This is the first graphic novel I’ve ever read but I completely loved it! The novel has amazing art and a really complex story. Plus it’s really funny. I found myself instantly in love with the two main characters – Alana and Marko – who clearly love each other and their baby daughter. They bicker. They support each other. And they’re sarky as hell.

I must admit, I was a bit worried when I was flicking through it in the shop and saw this: photo IMG_4179_zpsemqzyevd.jpg

and it has some strange things like these sex workers:

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But it was gripping and I just couldn’t put it down. To summarise, read it:

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5-stars

Fables, Volume 1: Legends in Exile (Fables, #1)Title: Fables :Legends in Exile
Author: Bill
Series: Fables Vol. 1
Publication: 25th April 2003
Genre: Graphic novel, Fantasy.


This book has an incredible premises; it is clearly where Once Upon A Time got some of it’s ideas. A savage creature conquers the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, forcing all the inhabitants into exile. Disguised among the “mundys” they are hiding in modern day New York. Vol. 1 focuses on finding out who has murdered Snow White’s sister, Rose Red.

The characters were what made this book for me. I loved the twist on some of the classics, such as: Prince Charming is a womanizer

and Rose Red is a party girl:

However, the story for me was a bit predictable and I felt a bit disappointed with the ending. The world that has been built up means that the rest of the series could be really interesting as it is such an interesting premises, but as a stand alone it wasn’t as amazing as I felt it could be.

4-stars


Have you read these? What did you think?

Are there any other series that you think are worth reading?

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Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

Wolf by Wolf (Wolf By Wolf, #1)

Title: Wolf by Wolf
Author: Ryan Graudin
Series: Wolf by Wolf #1
Publication: 20th October 2015 by Orion Children’s Books
Genre: YA, Historical Fiction.

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – A historical fiction.

My Thoughts (2)

From Goodreads

Once upon a different time, there was a girl who lived in a kingdom of death. Wolves howled up her arm. A whole pack of them-made of tattoo ink and pain, memory and loss. It was the only thing about her that ever stayed the same.Her story begins on a train.

Germania, 1956. Over ten years since the Nazis won the war. 18-year-old Yael is part of the resistance, and she has just one mission: to kill Hitler.

But first she’s got to get close enough to him to do it.

Experimented on during her time at Auschwitz, Yael has the unique ability to change her appearance at will. The only part of her which always remains are the five tattooed wolves on her arm; one for each of the people she’s lost. Using her abilities, she must transform into Adele Wolfe, Germany’s most famous female rider and winner of the legendary Axis Tour; an epic long distance motorcycle race from Berlin to Tokyo, where only the strongest (and wiliest) riders survive. If she can win this, she will be able to get close enough to kill the Fuhrer and change history forever.

But with other riders sabotaging her chances at every turn, Yael’s mission won’t be easy…

My Thoughts

There would be no dressing up as a maid. No cyanide slipped into his crystal glass of mineral water. The Fuhrer’s death was to be a loud, screaming thing. A broadcast of blood over the Reichssender.

I went into this not knowing anything about it and I ended up loving it.

The book is in alternative history novel with a fascinating premises based on a lot of “what ifs” and a plot that is unlike any other.

What if Germany won the war? What if Hitler didn’t kill himself? What if the unethical medical experiments didn’t stop? What if some of the experiments worked? What if the experiment creates something else?

The story flicks between Then, when Yael is in Auschwitz having unethical human experimentation forced upon her, and Now, when she is disguised as Adele Wolfe, Germany’s most famous female motorbike rider and winner of the legendary Axis Tour, with one thing on her mind. To kill Hitler. The two timelines are headed so it’s very clear, but we would be able to tell even if they weren’t; they were really well placed within the story and weren’t confusing and the story flowed seamlessly. I really liked that Yael has a tattoo with five wolves, to cover her camp tattoo, and each time it flicked back to the past we met one of the people that the wolves represent, who have shaped the person she is today.

The book explores identity. Due to the medical experimentation, Yael can change her appearance to become anyone, have any face, and so never really has her own identity. She cannot remember what she looked like before the experimentation began. As Graudin says in her author’s note:

This book, at its heart, is about identity. Not only in how we see ourselves, but about how we see others. What makes people who they are? The color of their skin? The blood in their veins? … I gave Yael the ability to skinshift to address these questions, as well as to highlight the absurdity of racial superiority. By taking creative liberty with this surreal element, I hoped to push readers out of their comfort zones and into Yael’s many skins and, by doing so, to impart a deeper understand of what humanity is capable of.

This has easily become one of my favourite books and I’m gutted that I have left it this long to read it. I’m eager to read the next one! I would happily recommend this to everyone in a heartbeat.

My Thoughts (1)

5-stars

 

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

Title: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
Author: Gail Honeyman
Series: N/A
Publication: 4th May 2017 by HarperCollins
Genre: Fiction

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – A book with a strong female character

This counts towards my ARC August challenge.

Advanced Reading Copy provided, in exchanged for an honest review, from the publishers.

My Thoughts (2)

From Goodreads

Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive – but not how to live

Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend.

Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything.

One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world that everyone else seems to take for granted – while searching for the courage to face the dark corners she’s avoided all her life.

Change can be good. Change can be bad. But surely any change is better than… fine?

My Thoughts

This is the best book I’ve read so far this year.

This book first came to my attention whilst I was waiting for the tube. Yes, advertising really does work. Doesn’t that cover just grab your attention? But honestly, the book wasn’t what I was expecting, it was so much more.

Eleanor is one of those well developed and interesting characters who are truly memorable. She is socially clueless to the point where everyone just finds her odd. It can be very painful yet hysterical. She sticks to her routine; working at the same job for nine years, starting work at 8:30, breaking for an hour lunch during which she reads the newspaper cover to cover and does the cross word and leaving at 5:30. She then goes home and listens to the Archers and watches TV for a little while then off to bed at ten. The only day her routine changes is Wednesday when receives a phone call from Mummy. Throughout the weekend she drinks two bottles of vodka so shes consistently in the state where she’s neither drunk or sober. No one comes to visit her and she doesn’t go out to visits anyone else.

She is completely 100% fine with her life. Until she see the one on stage. Then she is on a mission to meet she. She first decides she needs to have a complete make over before she meets him, which is both shocking and hilarious.

When her computer breaks down she meets Raymonds from IT. He wears jeans and t-shirts with ‘childish slogans’ on. Raymond is intrigued by Eleanor but she’s not interested because she’s getting herself ready for the man of her dreams. But after work one day, Eleanor and Raymond come across a man who has fallen. Together they help the man and begin a friendship with him and his family that changes Eleanor’s routine and life.

Eleanor’s social awkwardness and seemingly lack of verbal filter can be hilirous, but I never felt like I was laughing at Eleanor.

There was nothing to tempt me from the choice of desserts, so I opted instead for a coffee, which was bitter and lukewarm. Naturally, I had been about to pour it all over myself but, just in time, had read the warning printed on the paper cup, alerting me to the fact that hot liquids can cause injury. A lucky escape, Eleanor! I said to myself, laughing quietly. I began to suspect that Mr. McDonald was a very foolish man indeed, although, judging from the undiminished queue, a wealthy one.

The book isn’t all funny and not at all light. It is also a dark book. Something awful happened to Eleanor as a child, and throughout the book we get hints as to what it is.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was packed full of emotion and I can wait to see what the author produces next.

My Thoughts (1)

5-stars

Age of Myth by Michael J. Sullivan

Age of Myth (The Legends of the First Empire, #1)

Title: Age of Myth
Author: Michael J. Sullivan
Series: The Legends of the First Empire #1
Publication: 28th June 2016 by Del Rey
Genre: Fantasy

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – A book from a sub genre of your favourite genre.

My Thoughts (2)

Since time immemorial, humans have worshiped the gods they call Fhrey, truly a race apart: invincible in battle, masters of magic, and seemingly immortal. But when a god falls to a human blade, the balance of power between humans and those they thought were gods changes forever.

Now only a few stand between humankind and annihilation: Raithe, reluctant to embrace his destiny as the God Killer; Suri, a young seer burdened by signs of impending doom; and Persephone, who must overcome personal tragedy to lead her people. The Age of Myth is over. The time of rebellion has begun.

My Thoughts

I’d like to start by saying, if you haven’t read a Michael J Sullivan book before, you’re really missing out! He publishes his books a little differently to most in that he writes the whole series before it gets published. This means that not only do you not have to wait ages for the next book to be released but the books are all fantastic. You don’t get that issue where a book half way through the series looses it’s way or the inconsistencies. You get some great links, foreshadowing and worldbuilding. If you haven’t guessed yet, Michael J Sullivan is an auto-buy author for me, simply because his books never let me down.

Age of Myth is set 3000 years before The Riyria Revelations but it is meant to be read separately and doesn’t have any spoilers. There are some characters and locations that are mentioned  in both but certainly no spoilers.

I loved the characters in this book; Suri, Raithe and Persephone in particular. As the booked flicked between the different character’s POV, I found myself sad when each of their parts finished. My particular favourite was Suri was because she was wild, innocent and lovely, although she did remind me slightly of Auri from Name of the Wind in the way that she spoke to animals and understood the world around her differently to othersThe characters were what really made this story for me; there was natural banter, character progression and you become emotionally attached to them because they’re so relatable and likable.

Like his other novels, this book was fast paces, easy to read with action, interesting characters and some unexpected twists.

My Thoughts (1)

5-stars

Books reviews: Red Queen, Thirteen Reasons Why and The One Memory of Flora Banks.

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)Title: Red Queen
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #1
Publication: 10th February  2015 by HarperTeen
Genre: YAFantasy.

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge –  A book where one of the main characters is royalty.


This is a book that you’ve read before. Many times. It’s just a mash up of lots of popular books. This left it being highly predictable and, for me, disappointing.

There are Reds and Silvers. Silvers have special powers (think X-Men) and therefore rule the Reds and send them off to war at 17 to fight their battles. Throughout the book, the Reds do very little escape their living state.

And then Mare comes along. Like most YA heroines,  she is the reckless Saviour, who is unlike all the others and powers. Again, think any YA heroine, she is also sassy but makes silly choices. When she gets two love interests come along she thinks about them both obsessively. On the bright side, the love triangle isn’t dominating of the book.

I loved Queen Elara. Manipulative, ruthless and malicious, she was something fresh in the book as she provided twists. Although, again, the character was a lot like Cersei from Game of Thrones as she had a fierce love for her children and was ruthless in getting them, and herself, power.

For me, the major saving grace of this book was the ending.

I know lots of people loved this book and they can get over the fact that it’s basically a mash up of other books because they get investing in the characters but for me it was too similar to other books, making it predictable and lacking in originality.

3-stars

Thirteen Reasons Why

Title: Thirteen Reasons Why
Author: Jay Asher
Series: N/A
Publication: 18th October 2007 by Razorbill
Genre: YA

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – An epistolary fiction


Wow.

I read this book just after the TV series had been released on Netflix. I went in knowing nothing other than it was about suicide. I was completely hooked.

This is Hannah’s story, even though she has already killed herself. Before she committed suicide, she recorded 13 cassette tapes which are passed on to 13 people to say how they had an impact her decision to end her life.

I was so captivated by what Hannah was saying. It was just so eerie and powerful. I sped read Clay’s bits, as really he was just a mediator as he listens to the tapes, just so I could listen to what she was saying.

Whether you like the book or not, it still has a powerful message which really makes you think about how our words and actions have an impact on other’s lives.

5-stars

The One Memory of Flora Banks

Title: The One Memory of Flora Banks
Author: Emily Barr
Series: N/A
Publication: 12th January 2017 by Penguin
Genre: YA

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge – A book written or set in Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Iceland)


This review contains some minor spoilers

I received a few chapters of this book in one of my Illumicrate boxes. Then I started seeing it everywhere. So when it came down to being 99p on kindle, I had to buy it. I’m glad it was only 99p.

Flora has anterograde amnesia. She can’t remember anything day-to-day, and writes things on her arm to help her remember. Then she kisses someone she shouldn’t have and the next day she begins remembering things for the first time since she was ten. Then the boy is gone. She thinks he’s moved to the Arctic…

I haven’t read many books about anterograde amnesia but all the ones I have read have the same “twist” that someone is not telling them something. So when the twist came up, it wasn’t a surprise, it was a groan that emerged from me.

This whole book just screamed unbelievable to me. Not only the twist but her making her way to Norway on her own without raising any suspicion.

The one thing I did like is that the synopsis suggested that her amnesia could be cured by the kiss, but luckily (for the plot) it wasn’t.

2-stars


Have you read, or are you going to read, any of these books? What did you think?

Lady of the Lake by Andrzek Sapkowski

Title: The Lady of the Lake
Author: Andrzek Sapkowski
Series: The Witcher #6
Publication: 16th March 2017 by Orion Publishing Group
Genre: Fantasy

Synopsis (Netgalley)

After walking through a portal in the Tower of the Swallow, thus narrowly escaping death, the Witcher girl, Ciri, finds herself in a completely different world… a world of the Elves. She is trapped with no way out. Time does not seem to exist and there are no obvious borders or portals to cross back into her home world.

But this is Ciri, the child of prophecy, and she will not be defeated. She knows she must escape to finally rejoin the Witcher, Geralt, and his companions – and also to try to conquer her worst nightmare. Leo Bonhart, the man who chased, wounded and tortured Ciri, is still on her trail. And the world is still at war.

Daz’s Thoughts

The finale to the epic fantasy series, The Witcher. The story takes place straight after the events of the Tower of the Swallows and sees the entire Witcher universe committing itself to a great war. Geralt is engulfed in his depression of losing Ciri and Yennefer and throws himself into helping anybody else who is in desperate need of ‘killing monsters’. Meanwhile, Ciri is battling against those who are trying to force her destiny upon her.

The story is a fitting end to the entire series. Although it starts off at a bemusing pace (time travel and alternate universes) all of these begin to knit themselves together and forms the blanket of a world that is closing in on Tolkien. There are still elements of the politics behind war and you begin to learn about the true horrors that befall countries during these times.

I must say that there are parts that I could’ve done without, for example I didn’t need the part about the rapey old man in the woods. However, I am still very happy with this story being the ending to a great story and it ends in a way that should close storylines behind itself.

Daz’s Rating

5-stars

Truth or Dare by Non Pratt

Truth or Dare

Title: Truth or Dare
Author: Non Pratt
Series: N/A
Publication: 1st June 2017 by Walker Books
Genre: YA, Contemporary.

My Thoughts (2)

A powerful and moving novel about bravery from the Guardian’s “writer to watch” Non Pratt, perfect for fans of Rainbow Rowell, John Green and Holly Bourne. How far is too far when it comes to the people you love? Claire Casey hates being the centre of attention. But if it means getting Sef Malik to notice her, it’s a risk she’s happy to take. Sef is prepared to do anything to help his recently disabled brother. But this means putting Claire’s love – and life – on the line. Because when you’re willing to risk everything, what is there left to lose?

My Thoughts

You know those books where you put them down and you find yourself thinking about them? This is one of those books. I was halfway through and almost got hit in the face by a tennis ball because I was thinking about this book.

The book is one story with two sides. Literally. I loved the way that you read Claire’s side first then had to flip the book over to read Sef’s side. Seeing the story from the two different perspectives really helped to understand where the characters were coming from and the choices they made.

Non Pratt just has this way with words. This book may be aimed at teenagers but it it’s definitely for all ages. Non managed to explore a huge range of different subjects – including social media, racisim and disability – without them becoming the main focus and still somehow making it relatable.

Claire and Sef’s relationship was just beautifully written. I’ve read so many books recently where the relationships have been out of the blue or really quick but this wasn’t anything like them. The entire relationship just felt so natural and realistic. I found myself smiling at so many points, and doing my foot wiggle that I do when I’m loving a book.

I really must insist that you all go and read this book.

My Thoughts (1)

5-stars

Animal Farm by George Orwell

Animal Farm

Title: Animal Farm
Author: George Orwell
Series: N/A
Publication: August 1945
Genre: Fable, allegory, satire.

Around the World in 52 Books Challenge–  A banned book

Synopsis (Goodreads)
“All animals are equal. But some animals are more equal than others.”

One night on an English farm, Major the boar recounts his vision of a utopia where his fellow creatures own the land along with the means of production and are no longer the slaves of humans.

Before long his dream comes true, and for a short while all animals really are equal. But the clever pigs educate themselves and soon learn how to extend their own power, inevitably at the expense of the rest of the community.

This well-loved tale is, of course, a satire on the Soviet Communist system that still remains a powerful warning despite the changes in world politics since “Animal Farm” was first published.

This production is based on Orwell’s own radio version which was first produced in 1947.

My Thoughts

This is the first Orwell book I’ve read – I know, I’m shocked too. I’ve been meaning to read one for a while and I’m glad I finally managed to do so.

Although I found the book surprisingly easy to reading and interesting, I found the author’s note afterwards even more interesting. In the note, he explains his motivations and need to write this blunt and in your face book. He explains that

it was of the utmost importance to me that people in western Europe should see the Soviet régime for what it really was.

He already knew it would be banned and difficult to publish due to it’s nature, stating

The English intelligentsia, or most of them, will object to this book because it traduces their Leader and (as they see it) does harm to the cause of progress.

Furthermore, he explained his reasoning for using the analogy of animals to represent the Soviet régime, explaining that

It struck me that if only such animals became aware of their strength we should have no power over them, and that men exploit animals in much the same way as the rich exploit the proletariat.
I must admit that I know very little about the Soviet régime, so I was unable to draw the exact parallels between the people and the animals representing them, however this did not make the message any less powerful. What was so wonderful about this book was that even for someone like myself, with very little prior knowledge, the plot was so simple and succinct that it drove home the message and forced you to see what what was happening. Those damn pigs.
I really felt for Boxer who was the most hardworking animal on the farm, working himself to the bone, with utter faith in the leadership. Whilst the pigs organise, lie, re-write history and double-cross.

It was easy to see why this book has been banned in so many countries.

My Rating
5-stars

Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix by J.K.Rowling

harry-potter-re-read

This was one of the first books I every pre-ordered. When this first came out, my parents had to take it out of my room at night after they caught me under the covers reading it with my hidden torch. Because of that, it makes me really sad when people say they hate this book. Once again, I think it’s because they are thinking of the film rather than the book. It is the largest of the series, so there are some wishy-washy bits but it’s defintiely where the series starts getting more intense and interesting.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5)

My Favourite Bits

Sassy Harry – he’s fully of hormones so can be moody, is incredibly short tempered, but comes out with some wonderfully sassy remarks.

Tonks changing her appearance.

Professor McGonagall’s sassyness, especially towards Umbridge.

‘Hem, hem.’

‘I wonder,’ said Professor McGonagall in cold fury, turing on Professor Umbridge, ‘how you expect to gain an idea of my usual teaching methods if you continue to interupt me? You see, I do not generally permit people to talk when I am talking.’

Ron trying to do the silencing charm on a frog and poking it in the eye and making it croak louder.

Luna’s Lion hat in support of Gryffindor.

Malfoy’s catchy tune for Ron on the Quidditch pitch. What’s that? You fancy another sing along? Alright then…

Weasley cannot save a thing,
He cannot block a single ring,
That’s why Slytherins all sing:
Weasley is our King.
Weasley was born in a bin
He always lets the Quaffle in
Weasley will make sure we win
Weasley is our King.
Weasley is our King,
Weasley is our King,
He always lets the Quaffle in
Weasley is our King.

That they all bumped into Lockhart in St Mungo’s and kept offering them autographs, he wouldn’t take no for an answer – he hadn’t just learnt joined up hand writing for nothing!

The jinx that Hermione put on the DA member’s list.

Fred and George setting off fireworks and the swamp, and Peeves saluting them as they left.

The Order all rounding on Vernon at the end and threatening him.

 

Bits I Forgot About

Kingsley Shacklebolt being the person in charge of finding Sirius, and feeding the Ministry fake information about his whereabouts.

The twins testing their joke products on themselves, and first years, and ending up with massive pus filled boils on their groins. I especially loved everyone using them in Umbridge’s lessons at the same time when she became Headmistress.

Professor Grubbly-Plank taking over Care of Magical Creatures because Hagrid is still not back from doing something for Dumbledore.  After watching Fantastic Beasts, I especially love that they introduce Nifflers and that Lee keeps putting them into Umbridge’s office.

Hermione making coins where the date changes to match Harry’s coin for the DA meetings, and that she got the idea from the Death Eaters’ marks.

Dobby finding them the Room of Requirement for the DA meetings, and also being the one to warn them about Umbridge finding them.

 

My Favourite Quotes

‘Yes- yes, good point, Petunia! What were you doing under out window boy?’

‘Listening to the news,’ said Harry in a resigned voice.

His aunt and uncle exchanged looks of outrage.

‘Listening to the new? Again?’

‘Well, it changes every day, you see.’ said Harry.

 

‘…Harry I’ve left a letter telling your aunt and uncle not to worry -‘

‘They won’t’ said Harry.

‘-that you’re safe’

‘That’ll just depress them’

‘-and that you’ll see them next summer.’

‘Do I have to?’

 

‘Is it true that you shouted at Professor Umbridge?’

‘Yes,’ said Harry’

‘That you called her a liar?’

‘Yes’

‘That you told her that He Who Must Not Be Names is back?’

‘Yes.’

Professor McGonagall sat down behind her desk, watching harry closely. Then she said, ‘Have a biscuit, Potter.’

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K.Rowling

harry-potter-re-read

Most people that I speak to say that this is their least favourite, but I think that really they’re think of the film. This book is definitely ways better than the film. It left out so many important and brilliant things, like Winky and the maze (I hold so much fury over how badly they did the maze in the films).

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter, #4)

My Favourite Bits

Fred and George creating new things for Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. I especially loved the Ton-Tongue Toffee they give to Dudley.

Fred and George winding Percy up. Again. Basically, I just forgot how much I love Fred and George in the whole series. Boy is this going to be hard later on.

Malfoy being turned into a ferret.

That the first task takes place on my birthday.

Dobby knitting Harry a pair of socks for Christmas.

‘Dobby is making them himself, sir!’ the elf said happily. ‘He is buying wool out of his wages, sir!’

The left sock was bright red, and had a pattern of broomsticks upon it; the right sock was green, with a pattern of Snitches.

The Weasleys turning up as Harry’s family support for the final task, Molly is such a babe, and Fleur eyeing up Bill.

The maze – as I said earlier they completely slaughtered this in the film. I love that the Blast-ended newts end up in the maze, and I especially love the sphinx.

 

Bits I Forgot About

How much Hedwig seems to hate Pigwidgeon.

The Weasleys using Flu Powder to get Harry for the Summer. Except the Dursleys covered up the fireplace so the entire family are stuck behind the wall.

Mad-Eye Moody using the Imperius curse on all the students as part of a lesson.

The Veela at the World Cup.

That they meet Sirius in Hogsmede.

 

My Favourite Quotes

‘Percy wouldn’t notice a joke if it danced naked in front of him wearing one of Dobby’s hats.’

 

‘Severus, please fetch me the strongest Truth Potion you possess, and then go down to the kitchens, and bring up the house elf called Winky. Minerva, kindly go down to Hagrid’s house, where you will find a large black dog sitting in the pumpkin patch. Take the dog to my office, tell him I will be with him shortly, then come back here.’

If either Snape or McGonagall found these instructions peculiar, they hid their confusion.

 

What are your favourite bits of the book?