Can Harry Potter be considered Gothic?

     So I was looking through my posts and I found this! It was written by my mom back when our blog when it was first getting started and for some reason it was saved as a draft. I know at some point it was posted so I would like to share it with everyone.




     "I have been doing quite a bit of research lately on Gothic Literature. My life just hasn’t been hectic enough. Anyhow, in this process, I came across a syllabus for an undergraduate class focused on Victorian Gothic Literature. What surprised me was the two novels to be studied, the all too common Bram Stoker’s Dracula and J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Of course my brain was immediately reeling to decide which side of the fence I belong on.

     From my research, here is a list of the primary points to a Gothic novel:
  • the betrayal of innocence
  • enclosed space (typically decrepit castles)
  • battles ensued on the villain’s turf
  • an orphaned protagonist
  • emotional narrative
  • a prophecy that sets the story in motion
     I will not sit here and give you a play by play for these bullets. I mean who in there right mind even puts a billeted list in a blog post and expects people to read it? We all know Harry himself is an orphaned child sent to live with his hateful aunt and uncle who stick him in a closet. Is that emotional enough? Rowling has more than a few Gothic structures, but I said I will not go point by point so let's move on.

     What I would like to discuss is battles ensued on the villain’s turf.

     Rowling has quite the creative approach when it comes to getting the heroes and villains together on the stereotypical gothic turf. She has portkeys to transport students, she lures students into dungeons and she takes advantage of character flaws. Above all, she has created such a heartfelt group of heroes that they seek out the danger, starting with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

     Let's take a look

     Typically within the Gothic genre, the villain will lure the protagonist to a grim place (such as a cemetery) before the fight truly begins. Looking at Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire,  Harry and Cedric unsuspectingly grab a portkey and are transmitted to the cemetery in Godric’s Hollow where they are to see the rebirth of the tabooed Lord Voldemort. Here, Harry is forced to defend himself against the dark wizard or die.

     Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t love the series any less now. In fact, I have even more respect for J.K. Rowling for her wonderful use of the Gothic genre within the realm of children’s literature."- Tori

     Having read this post it has great points and I never looked at Harry Potter this way. I mean seriously, I don't think most people have thought of Harry Potter this way, seeing as it's a children's book. I honestly don't think I'll ever look at this book the same. I love Rowling even more now for this, as she incorporated this Gothic theme in the books so well they were almost undetectable. This was a great book and I wish there were more posts like this out there!

*This has not been edited, the majority of this content all belongs to my mom, Tori.*

Truth Teller review by Ursula Lygarlis

Hello there happy Bookies! I am so excited about my first ever guest blog post!

I am secretly a book hoarder as well, so don't be ashamed of your overflowing attics. At least you have one, there are only so many places you can shove books when you live in a toadstool. This new creation they call MineEye has been fabulous for such pleasant problems. Now, I can just pop over and grab a book for my kindle. I just hope that those eensy weensy books in there don't overflow out. I don't know where I would put them!


Oh my, I have become quite distracted. I stopped to tell you about Kurt Chambers' Truth Teller. I loved it!! Of course, I grabbed it at first because it was free, perma-free as he says,but  I never expected to be so incredibly blown away. If anyone follows me on Twitter, I'm sure you saw me talking about it. Even poor Grimnien couldn't get a dance in edgewise.

download
So, there's a girl. Her name is Charlotte. Somehow, Charlotte is transported from her vacation place at some beach town into a medieval time period where everyone rides horses and magical beings are running rampant. Middleton, Swallow and their son Elderfield take Charlotte into their home and care for her, promising to do what it takes to return her home. Little do they know, this quest is one of grave danger. They must work together to find Goffer, the only being able to get Charlotte back across the realms and home to her own family.

I am clearly not a middle grade child, however, I LOVED this story. I just couldn't seem to put it down. The themes that we would want our youth to read are just so well written that children will not even notice. The typical coming of age storyline for both Elderfield and Charlotte are just so perfect for a MG reader. They are able to see Charlotte blossom as a person and rise to the occasion to protect herself and those she loves. Then there are those other themes we love to see in Middle Grade fantasy: good v evil, independence, family, friendship.
"Every story has a hidden truth." -Middleton, Truth Teller

I would consider Truth Teller a wonderful mash-up of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and Harry Potter. I know Shelfie here often speaks about a Through the Cabinet genre and this wonderful story by Kurt Chambers fits in here perfectly, but you will have to read it to find out why!

Enter for a chance to win Wrath of Siren, book 2 in the series.


What Inspired Truth Teller?

     "I really fancied the idea of writing my own book ever since I was young. I always struggled with reading as a child, but loved reading fantasy books like Lord of the Rings. The only problem I found was they were often heavy reading even for adults. I thought it would be great if someone wrote a book just like this, but that was aimed at children like me to make them easier to read. I kept this idea in my head for years and years, but never put in into practice until I reached my mid 30's.

    Working with children inspired me to start writing. I helped run a local Brownie pack. Anyone who has ever worked with children will know just how inspirational they are. That is how Truth Teller was created. An idea I had from way back in my childhood eventually became a reality." -Kurt Chambers

MineEye Giveaway!

Recently, I became YA acquisitions manager at MineEye, an online website dedicated to helping up-and-coming authors. To get more attention for our authors we've done a couple giveaways recently, and we're having another one! Note that none of these books are YA.

1st Place: A £20 Amazon Giftcard/Voucher
2nd Place: Signed copy of Taken by Victoria Allred
3rd Place: eBook copy of The Girl With the Blue Umbrella by Heather Awad
4th Place: eBook copy of Fantasy Child I Key to the Kingdom by Gavin Carter
5th Place: eBook copy of Bitter is the Salt by James Willard and Gavin Carter
6th Place: eBook copy of Taken by Victoria Allred

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Book Beginnings & The Friday 56: Magnus Chase


     I'm currently reading Magnus Chase and the Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan! He's my auto-buy author so when I saw this book in the store I bought it immediately! Enjoy!

Book Beginnings by Rose City Reader
"YEAH, I KNOW. You guys are going to read about how I died in agony, and you’re going be like, 'Wow! That sounds cool, Magnus! Can I die in agony too?'"- Magnus Chase and the Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan. Sounds interesting right!

Friday 56 by Freda's Voice
"Hunding grunted 'No one brings luggage anymore. Don't they put anything on your funeral pyre?'"- Magnus Chase and the Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan. I honestly don't understand this. As of right now, I haven't read to this point, so I'm extremely confused at the moment.
*If you do this tag, comment below so I can see! Also, there are linkys at both websites to add your url for whichever tag you do.*

Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins


Rebel Belle

by Rachel Hawkins
  • Book 1/3 in the Rebel Belle Series
  • Published April 8, 2014
  • 353 pages
  • 12+ years
     "Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper's destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts. Just when life can't get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she's charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper's least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him--and discovers that David's own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.

     With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action and a touch of magic, this new young adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y'all beg for more."-Amazon

Divergent Book Trailer

     Recently I decided to go on YouTube and watch some book trailers. I watched a couple and decided this one was my favorite. I feel like it perfectly captures the theme and tone of the book. Without further ado, I present the HarperTeen Divergent Book Trailer! I also enjoyed some of the other trailers in the playlist.

Top 3 Children's Fantasy Series

     Fantasy is a wide genre. There's children's fantasy, YA fantasy, NA fantasy, adult fantasy, sci-fi, the list goes on and on. I've managed to put together a list of my top 3 favorite children's fantasy series. Enjoy!

DNF's: What It Takes


     If you're a reader you probably know what it's like to not finish a book. Whether you get distracted or don't like it, there's bound to be at least one DNF in your pile. So what exactly does it take to give up on a book?

Book Haul!

     If you're new to my blog then you might not know that most of the books I review are sent to me by authors. However, I'm currently at a break between review books, so I had a chance to get some new books! Enjoy!



Book Beginnings & The Friday 56: Rebel Belle



     Today I thought I would try two new tags, the Book Beginnings and Friday 56 tag. These are two popular tags that are commonly combined as they are similar. For the Book Beginnings tag you find the first sentence, or so, of the book you're reading and add it on here. For the Friday 56 tag you find a random book and flip to the 56th page, or 56% on eReaders, and add a random sentence. There is also a variation of the Friday 56, known as Instagram 56, where you do the same thing, but you add the sentence to the picture, or the caption, it doesn't matter. I'm going to be using Rebel Belle for both of these challenges. Enjoy!

3 Things I'm Thankful For..


     As you know, today is Thanksgiving, so I thought I would tell you what I'm thankful for. Feel free to tell me what you're thankful for in the comments, or write your own blog post. Just leave me a comment or link telling me what you're thankful for. Also, fell free to tag me on Twitter, at bookattic1, or on any other social media, the links are on the sidebar. Most of these aren't really related to books, but I thought I'd get in the spirit of the holidays.

A Few Quiet Beers With God

A Few Quiet Beers With God
by John Perrier
  • Published February 3, 2015 by JP Publishing Australia
  • 282 pages
  • Science fiction, humor, adventure, futuristic
  • English
  • &&&&&
     "When Dave, a hopeless but lovable rogue, meets Alexandra, the girl of his dreams, he feels as though his luck has finally changed. But due to his ineptness with technology, he tragically loses touch with her.

     Meanwhile the lust for supremacy of two powerful Americans ignites a bitter feud. Their fight reaches around the globe and soon entwines not only Dave and Alexandra but also a superstar football player nicknamed 'God'.

     Their final meeting precipitates an event that no-one saw coming."-Amazon.com

Ultimate Book Tag!



Not official picture, I made it!

Today, I'm doing the Ultimate Book Tag, originally from Chapter Chicks, a book related YouTube channel. I found this tag on Angel Erin's Book Obsession. I tag anyone reading this who would like to do this tag. I hope you like it!

Giveaway!! (Closed)

I have been having some difficulties with Rafflecopter so I am announcing the winners this way.
And the winners are...

  • Kathy Hitz
  • Jason May
  • Mendi Egging
Thank you to everyone who entered!


*The giveaway has been extended until the 13th. Enter while you can!*

Win one of three copies of  Dragon of the Month Club by Iain Reading.

Middle Grade Fantasy and Adventure! I have a full review at Dragon of The Month Club. If you love it, there is more to come!! winners will be chosen November 14th!!!

Good Luck and Happy Reading!

Dragon of the Month Club




Also can be bought at Barnes & Noble
*I got this book from the author for free, this in no way affects my opinion of the book.*

Dragon of the Month Club

by Iain Reading

  • First book in the Dragon of the Month Club series
  • Age 8-12 interest level
  • Independently published through Create-Space December 18, 2014
  • 236 pages
  • Genres: Fantasy, Middle Grade, Adventure

Summary

     "The very unlikely friendship of Ayana Fall and Tyler Travers began on a Tuesday afternoon in the maze of bookshelves at the back of the old library."-First sentence of the Dragon of the Month Club

     Every month on the thirteenth there's a new dragon to conjure. This dragon ranges in difficulty and rarity of materials. Each dragon takes two people to "conjure" it through a step of precise steps. However, one mistake while conjuring a steam dragon leads to disaster. Ayana and Tyler find themselves fighting for their lives and they need all the help they can get. Along with five dragons, a few new friends, and even more enemies, will the diverse group survive their journey home?

Wonderland: Classic Fairytale with a Sci-Fi Spin




*I got this book from the author for free, this in no way affects my opinion of the book.*



by Robert McKay

  •  Book one of the Intergalactic Fairy Tales series
  • Science Fiction, Coming of Age
  • Includes violence and mild humor.
  • Published by McKay Manor August 20, 2015
  • 13-25 interest level

    All Alice wants to be in life is a pirate. She wants to do what she wants, when she wants with no one to tell her otherwise. One night after sneaking out, Alice finds the perfect opportunity, a talking space ship. She

gets on, claiming it as her own, and rides to Wonderland. However, Wonderland isn't all smiles, it's mildly inappropriate people lose their head for disagreeing with the queen, and animals can talk, which isn't always a

Witch Wood (Excerpt Included)

Click for Harvesting Series on Amazon
 

  *I got this book from the author for free, this in no way effects my opinion of the book.*
*Do not read this book until you've read the previous three books, The Harvesting, Midway, and The Shadow Aspect.*

 

Witch Wood

A "Harvesting Series" Novella  

Melanie Karsak 

  • Published October 1, 2015 by Clockpunk Press 
  •  Post Apocalyptic
  •  13+ Interest level
  •  5/5 ★★★★★
  •  Includes mild language, zombies and witchcraft.

     Amelia isn't an average teenage girl, she's a witch. She's been practicing Wicca, a type of magic, since she was 13. With a flu sweeping the nation with deadly and strange side effects her mother, a nurse, is working 24/7. Once at Witch Wood to take care of Madame Knightly, an elderly women who can't clean the house or shop herself, she finds out her mother's sick. She go's home only to find her mom and step-dad in a zombie-like state in her backyard. The world is going down in flames, will Amelia go with it?

Shape-shifting September!-Makenzie

 
     Here at Book-Attic, we've decided to a post dedicated entirely to shape-shifters.  This post will be to explain shape-shifters and were-creatures. We will be focusing on multiple kinds of shape-shifters from different books and series. Those series include, but aren't limited to, Harry Potter, Twilight, Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, and The Mortal Instruments. Before we begin keep in mind that were-creatures and shape-shifters are two different species.         

Shape-Shifters

I believe a shape-shifter is anyone or anything that changes form on will whereas most people see them as any being who changes form. An example of would be the Greek Gods. They can turn into any form they want and always control it. The Greek Gods typically use their shape-shifting abilities to confuse or take advantage of people. Jacob Black, from Twilight,  changes form willingly and although Meyers classifies him as a werewolf, Edward and Aro later clarify that he's a shape-shifter.                                                    
"These creatures truly have nothing to do with the Children of the Moon. They have merely inherited this skill from their fathers. It's genetic, they do not continue their species by infecting others the way true werewolves do." -Aro, Breaking Dawn
     
 
Boggarts
     Boggarts, a creature from Harry Potter, area unique form; half shape-shifter, half were-creature. For those of you who don't know what this creature is, they're magical creatures that turn into a person's worst fear. Bogggarts control this change, but lose control after that. Once a witch or wizard has cast the Ridikulus spell, the fearsome image is changed into something funny. For example, Ron Weasley's fear is spiders. When he casts this spell, the giant spider shaped boggart suddenly has roller-skates and he starts slipping around, therefore diminishing Ron's fear.

Were-Creatures

   There is only one significant difference between were-creatures and shape-shifters; they can't control their changes. Vampires are an interesting type of being, they only change once. When the vampire is first bitten, it is not a voluntary change, making it a were-creature, in my opinion. Then there's the classic example, a were-wolf. These creatures change once a full moon into a horrific monster without self-control. Once the full moon is over, the majority of the time, the person has no recollection of the time when they were in wolf form.        I enjoyed writing about these unique and interesting creatures. I hope to hear your take on the topic. Also, if you want to hear my take on a specific kind of shape-shifter, just ask I'd be happy to answer!   

Let the shape-shifting begin!

 

The Shadow Aspect (The Harvesting 2)


The Shadow Aspect by Melanie Karsak

Genre- Post-Apocalyptic 

Published- Clockpunk Press (July 15, 2015)

Interest Level- 14+

 

Warning includes mature content, zombies, vampires, cussing, and spoilers from The Harvesting (The Harvesting 1) and Midway (The Harvesting 1.5).


     "When Layla took the final step through the labyrinth, she thought she was saving the ones she loved.
     She couldn’t have been more wrong.
     The unwitting victims of a grudge seething for eons, Layla and the other survivors now find themselves in a war for our world. With vampires lurking and shapechangers plotting vengeance, if mankind has any hope of survival, Layla must decide whom to trust: the carnie girl? The quiet doctor? The tarot reader? The stranger with alluring gold eyes? Or the man she loves? And then there are the voices. What does it forewarn if the dead can speak?"- Melaniekarsak.com

      I give The Shadow Aspect 3.5/5 stars for good characters and plotline. We meet Tristan at the end of Midway, but really get to know him here. He has a big secret; a  secret that could be the key to life or undeath. I believe that we really get to know Cricket. She, like anybody, has insecurities and Karsak plays on that giving her life. As for Layla, we already knew her and she's just as awesome as always! 


     As a standalone, I think The Shadow Aspect could be good. However, when compared to the first two books in The Harvesting Trilogy, it was kind of dissapointing. You know that one book in a really good series that is good, but not quite as good as the rest? I feel like The Shadow Aspect was that book; good but not great. In spite of the fact that it wasn't the best, I can't wait to read Witch Wood (The Harvesting 2.5), to be published October 1, 2015 by Clockpunk Press.

 

The Harvesting Series Reading Order: 

Book 1: The Harvesting

Book 1.5: Midway (can be read before or after The Harvesting)

Book 2: The Shadow Aspect

Book 2.5: Witch Wood

 

 

Giveaway!!!

mystery box clean teen     "Clean Teen Publishing has a brand new giveaway! You could win a Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box! Each box will include 2-3 young adult print novels (may include advance release copies), swag, and more. Imagine your excitement as the postal carrier delivers this big beauty to your door. Each box’s contents are completely top secret and confidential. All we can tell you is that it will include a few Clean Teen Publishing print novels and some fun goodies. This giveaway is open to US contestants. If you are International, please still enter. We will be offering up an alternative prize for International winners which will include 3 ebooks of the readers choice. Good luck and happy winning!"-Clean Teen Publishing
Click on the picture for the giveaway!

 *Clean Teen Publishing has no mature content.*

Midway by Melanie Karsak

I had the very special privilege of winning signed copies of The Harvesting and Midway by Melanie Karsak as she worked up to the release of The Shadow Aspect. I had begun reading the first in the series a few months ago, but honestly, reading on a kindle is not my forte and quit rather quickly. However, I love Melanie Karsak's writing style and jumped at the opportunity to win signed copies. Little did I know, I was going to lose them to my twelve year old bibliophile and book reviewer! -Victoria Allred

Enough about me. Here is Makenzie's review of Midway!
Genre: Post Apocolyptic
Published: October 25, 2014 by Clockpunk Press
Interest level: 13+

Cricket's always been a carnie; she grew up on. However, when the world gets taken by "sick" people turned cannibals, she has to leave the carnival behind. With the help of Vella, a tarot reader, and her faithful dog, Puck, they find shelter. A sick world, criminals on the loose and a need to survive. Can Cricket survive the apocalypse or will she die trying?

Midway is a novella set at the same chronological time as The Harvesting giving readers a new view of the apocolypse. I give Midway four out of five stars only because I didn't feel I got to know Cricket as well as I did the characters of The Harvesting. Overall, it was a good story and I can't wait to read The Shadow Aspect (which I've already downloaded!) which is the second book in The Harvesting Series. 


*Read my review of The Harvesting.

 

The Harvesting by Melanie Karsak

The Harvesting by Melanie Karsak (#1 in The Harvesting Series)  

Genre: Post-Apocalyptic  

Published: January 8, 2014 by Clockpunk Press  

First edition: September 13, 2012 by Steampunk Press 

Interest Level: 13+


     Layla Petrovitch hoped she would never see Hamletville again. However, when she gets a desperate call from her grandmother, she is forced to return home. With an epidemic sweeping the country making infected people turn cannibalistic and danger at every turn, can Layla survive? With the help of whats left of the town they finally escape, but is it worth the risk?

    
      "Melanie Karsak is the author of the Amazon best-selling steampunk series The Airship Racing Chronicles, the award-winning horror/dark fantasy Harvesting Series, and The Saga of Lady Macbeth. She grew up in rural northwestern Pennsylvania and earned a Master's degree in English from Gannon University. A steampunk connoisseur, white elephant collector, Shakespeare nerd, and zombie whisperer, the author currently lives in Florida with her husband and two children. She is an Instructor of English at Eastern Florida State College."-Melaniekarsak.com


     I give The Harvesting 5/5 stars for great writing and a unique plot. It had me gripping the edge of my seat. With a variety of paranormal creatures, from vampires to shadow creatures, and a unique twist on zombies, no stone was left unturned. Many people classify it as zombie story, but it's so much more. It's vampires, post-apocalyptic, and could even be considered a coming-of-age story. In the end, I got so much more than I expected. I can't wait to read The Shadow Aspect the second story in The Harvesting Trilogy. 


*Review for Midway coming soon.*
Melanie Karsak on Amazon!!

Win a $10 Amazon gift card!


    


 

Dream Girl Book Blitz


Dream Girl
by S.J. Lomas 
Release Date: October 2013
248 pages

Summary from Goodreads:
For Christine, dreams have never been more than a pleasant dalliance in her subconscious or the occasional nightmare. Once she meets Gabriel, her dreams become vivid and shocking.


She spends time with Gabriel and learns there is far more to dreams than she ever imagined. As she becomes entangled in the truth, and her feelings for Gabriel, she finds herself on the path to making the biggest, and strangest, decision of her life.




Buy Links:

About the Author
S.J. is a cheerful Michigan girl who writes strange and somewhat dark stories.

Author Links:
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GIVEAWAY:
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Stepping Stones (The Stone Series, #1) Cover Reveal

Stepping Stones (The Stone Series, #1) 

by Kacey Vanderkarr 
Release Date: 08/25/15 
Urban Fey Press 

  Summary from Goodreads:

     Onnaleigh Moore is part of a plan—and it isn’t hers. When her brother dies in a car accident,Onna is desperate to preserve the tatters of her family. Any hope of finding normalcy vanishes when her mother runs off and her dad turns to booze to numb his pain. Onna’s grief is crippling, but the boy who showed up just when she needed him is helping her cope.

     Everett’s presence is comforting, though he knows things—Onna’s name just before they met, where she lives, and sometimes he comments on thoughts she doesn’t say aloud. She pegs him for a stalker, or maybe psychic, but the truth is deadlier than she imagines. As their feelings for one another deepen, Everett confesses a horrifying secret: Onna’s brother is only the beginning of the plan, and some fates are worse than death.

 

About the Author:

Kacey Vanderkarr is a young adult author. She dabbles in fantasy, romance, and sci-fi, complete with faeries, alternate realities, and the occasional plasma gun. She’s known to be annoyingly optimistic and listen to music at the highest decibel. When she’s not writing, she coaches winterguard and works as a sonographer. Kacey lives in Michigan, with her husband, son, and crazy cats. Along with her novels, Reflection Pond and Antithesis, Kacey's short fiction can be found in Sucker Literary Vol 3, and the upcoming Spark Vol 7, Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, and Out of the Green: Tales from Fairyland.

Author Links: