History is Happening in the Wizarding World

The past week has been overflowing with Harry Potter news and this Ravenclaw couldn’t feel more lucky to be alive right now!  I’m going to list my favorite news first because everyone has heard it by now and I’m already planning which bookstore I want to go to for the midnight release so I can feel like I’m in high school again.  From books to toys there’s just so much report so I’ll get to it:

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This is the most exciting news since it’s a new story set in the Harry Potter world!  Ever since Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was announced I had been praying that the show would find it’s way to NYC because really, how could I possibly survive in life without knowing everything about my favorite world?  The answer is, I probably couldn’t.  Luckily, for everyone who isn’t able to make it to London, Scholastic (or Little Brown if you’re in the UK) will be releasing a book of the full script!  Apparently there’s some confusion online but Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is NOT a prequel.  It takes place 19 years AFTER the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.  I love that it’s being released on July 31st for Harry’s birthday<3  Because it’s being printed so soon, the first version of this book is the Rehearsed Edition script and once it’s finalized, a new version of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be released, entitled the Definitive Collector’s Edition (in typical Potter fashion since publisher’s know us Potterheads will spend all of our money on new editions).

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Speaking of special editions… the 20 year anniversary of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is coming up in 2017 and to celebrate, Bloomsbury will be releasing Special Hogwarts House editions of the first book.  My thoughts: WHERE CAN I PREORDER MY PRECIOUS RAVENCLAW THEMED TOME?!

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As I’m sure you’re aware, the movie adaptation of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (which JK Rowling is penning the script for) is being released later this year.  Bloomsbury has announced that they’ll be releasing an updated hardback version of the textbook on February 9th, 2017 (woo less than year!) which will include new content from JK Rowling in the form of an introduction.  They’ve also just given a teaser for the cover (above) and announced that Jonny Duddle will be the cover illustrator.  You may recognize Duddle’s work because he also illustrated all of the new Potter covers in 2014.

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Yes, there’s more!  You know that beautiful Harry Potter Illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone?  Well, we’re about to get illustrated versions of the Hogwarts Library books as well (which include Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Autumn 2017, The Tales of the Beedle Bard  – 2018 and Quidditch Through the Ages – 2019).  I’m going to need an entire bookshelf dedicated solely to HP. This is not a complaint.

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This weekend Toy Fair is taking place at the Javits Center in NYC and Funko had a ton of Potter reveals to share! I’m thrilled to say that my dream of a Hogwarts Express Funko has been realized.  Unfortunately, there’s no official release date just yet but at least these are in our near future!  I love that the Mystery Minis line includes animals! I never thought I would say this but Voldemort is pretty cute in this line! And can we just about how Ron is holding a Chocolate Frog and Hermione is clutching a book? I’m in love!  Images of the toys below were released exclusively on Mugglenet.

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And right before Toy Fair, Funko announced the exclusive Harry Potter Funkos that’ll be available during the second wave.  My favorites are the Hot Topic exclusives which include Draco in his Quidditch robes and Cedric Diggory in his Triwizard outfit *sobs.*  The other two Pops, Harry Potter in the Sorting Hat and Neville Longbottom will be exclusive to Barnes and Noble.

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Kristin

Tea & Book Chat: A Court of Thorns and Roses By Sarah J. Maas (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)

I was lucky enough to get my hands on an ARC of A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas and I couldn’t have been happier to dive into Tamlin and Feyre’s story immediately.  ACOTAR is a Beauty and the Beast retelling and the parallel’s between the stories are very evident.  In order to pay the debt of taking a fairy’s life, Feyre is sentenced to living out the rest of her life in the Spring Court with it’s High Lord Tamlin and his emissary Lucien.  While she’s hesitant at first, Feyre’s new life away from her ungrateful mortal family quickly becomes a much better home for her.

Overall, Feyre is a great character.  I love her innate need to paint and express herself through artwork and I adore the way she inner monologues about her feelings towards painting.  I thought it was really interesting to replace Beauty’s love of books and reading with a different form of creativity.  Maas took the distinction a step farther and made her main character illiterate (which is also a HUGE change from Caelena from her Throne of Glass series).  She also reinterpreted the Beast’s physical ailment as a mask that is unable to be removed and is stuck on everyone in the Spring Court.  My favorite character in the series is Lucien who is the Beast’s emissary.  Lucien serves as Beast’s snarky one-eyed cohort.  Tamlin, the Beast of the story is initially kinder than the Beast of the fairy tale.  He’s a likeable lead who is very powerful and concerned with helping the people of his court.

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I loved reading about the fairy lore and all of the world-building that went into ACOTAR.  Everything felt so real and the fairy realm beyond the wall sounds breathtaking.  There were so many scenes I can vividly recall in my mind where I remember wishing that I could ever see something so beautiful in real life.  I read this 416 page story in two days because I was so enthralled that I couldn’t possibly part from the book.  I also have to mention how BEAUTIFUL the cover is.  It definitely does the book justice.  There are so many aspects of this story that I fell in love with and I cannot wait until the next book comes out.  Speaking of love, I could not write a review of this book without mentioning the steamy romance between Tamlin and Feyre.  Their love is so intense and we get a much more in depth look at their private moments together than is typically offered in the YA genre.

Final Thoughts: A Court of Thorns and Roses is an exceptional fairytale retelling of Beauty and the Beast.  Everything about this book from the cover to the story inside is breathtaking.  The landscapes of the fairy realm captured my heart and the parallel’s between it and the original fairytale left me with such an emotional attachment.

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A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down! (via Goodreads)

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Waiting on Wednesday: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases we’re eagerly anticipating.  This is my first week participating and I feel obligated to choose Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses.  The cover is my favorite of 2015 so far and I just cannot wait to delve into my own copy when it debuts on May 5th!

A Court of Thorns and Roses

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever. (via Goodreads)

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