Death and Fire: The Autumn Book Tag

Death and Fire: The Autumn Book Tag

I decided, as part of my new mission to Actually Post Semi-Regularly (it warrants capitalisation), to participate in the Autumn Book Tag. I got this tag from Engie @ Musings From Neville’s Navel, although she didn’t actually tag me in it. It was a rare book tag in that looking at the questions, I could actually think of answers to most of them, so I decided to give it a go.

What is your favorite thing about autumn?

The fact that all the bugs that have been harassing me all summer are now DYING.

Haha, just kidding. Probably Bonfire Night on Midsummer Common in Cambridge, because it’s social and the fireworks are great and the fire is huge. But I also like the crunchy leaves that I always go out of my way to stamp on. Apparently I like it when things fall down and die and then get OBLITERATED IN FIRE for our entertainment.

What book reminds you of your school days?

To Kill A Mockingbird, because we studied it for GCSE English. Possibly a boring answer (though less pretentious than a couple of thers I considered), but true nonetheless. My copy is battered, much-annotated by both me and my sister, covered in rainbow paper, and generally the worst nightmare of anyone who likes their books kept in good condition. Both of us wrote in coloured gel pen. In places you can’t tell our handwriting apart, either, which is kind of creepy.

What cover reminds you of autumn?

The original (US) cover for Ballad by Maggie Stiefvater. I first discovered her books during the October half term 2009, too, which is pretty firmly autumnal. While I was given this book for Christmas that year, it’s set between the beginning of a school year and Hallowe’en, aka the most autumnal of autumnal books ever.


What is your favorite horror or Halloween story? 

I’m not great on horror, I have to admit, and most of the books I’ve read set around Hallowe’en are actually more about its origins as Samhain and they take a different approach. Like Ballad! I could probably answer with that for several questions, to be honest. I love that book.

However, I’ll play nice. I think the only bonafide horror books I’ve read are The White Devil by Justin Evans, Seed by Ania Ahlborn, and Misery by Stephen King. All of them were hella creepy. All of them stopped me from sleeping. Much regret was experienced.

What is your favorite horror or Halloween film?

Can I cheat and say that I love Hallowe’en episodes of TV shows, instead? There are some brilliant Buffy episodes set around Hallowe’en, like the haunted house with the monster that turns out to be absolutely tiny. It’s creepy and then it’s just hilarious. Or the one where everyone gets turned into their costumes. My family never celebrated Hallowe’en and it’s really not a big deal in the UK anyway, so it’s primarly through American TV that I’ve experienced it, and I do enjoy the Buffy episodes quite a lot.

Willow as Joan of Arc: "Plus, she had that close relationship with God." Oz: "I'm God."
Willow as Joan of Arc: “Plus, she had that close relationship with God.”
Oz: “I’m God.”

What fall book release are you looking forward to?

AAHHHH JUST ONE? Jonathan Stroud just released the latest Lockwood & Co. book, Philip Reeve is about to release Black Light Express, Ben Aaronovitch is about to release The Hanging Tree, Paul Cornell’s coming out with The Lost Child of Lychford, and Mark Morris is releasing The Wraiths of War. Basically four very different supernatural crime novels, and one book about trains in space. All coming out within two months of each other. I haven’t even had a chance to read Empire of Storms yet, guys. Slow down with the new releases, yeah?

This is my Amazon wish list. Help.
This is my Amazon wish list. Help.

What autumn movie release are you anticipating?

I’m not particularly engaged in any specific film hype, largely because I never get around to seeing things until they’ve already been out of the cinema for months, but A Monster Calls supposedly comes out soon and I’d love to see how that book was adapted — it’s not like anything else I’ve ever read, but I think it has potential to either be amazing or terrible on screen.

I’m not sure if it technically comes out this autumn, though — it’s listed under October, but I think that’s a preview at a film festival with the main release being in January. Anyone know for sure?

What are the three books you plan to read this autumn?

I’ve got a stack of about eight owned-but-unread books to take to uni with me, as well as some new releases on my Kindle and those I’m waiting for above, but three in particular are:

Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson — I’ve read a load of his books and his worldbuilding is excellent. Picked this up in a charity shop, so I’m looking forward to giving it a go.

The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon — I bought this shortly before YALC but was waiting to reread the first book before I moved onto it, and just never got around to it. I think this series suffered from all the hype when the book deal was first announced (anyone remember that “next JK Rowling” phenomenon?), so I intend to take this one at face value now that I’ve left that behind!

And I Darken by Kiersten White. I bought this at YALC because I saw a lot of people raving about it on Goodreads and Tumblr, but I haven’t actually got around to reading it for myself yet. So that’s going to uni with me, awaiting a day when I have the brainpower to give it some attention. :)

Newnham's red-brick buildings are also well-suited to autumn, I think.
Newnham’s red-brick buildings are also well-suited to autumn, I think.

I haven’t been engaged enough with my own blog lately, let alone anyone else’s, so I wouldn’t know where to start with tagging anyone. However, if you’re interested in this tag and would like to do it, go right ahead, and feel free to link me to it! One day I’ll get the hang of this whole “friendship” thing…

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