So, the N.E.W.T.s was the first readathon I’ve ever taken part in and it was GLORIOUS. I won’t fully explain what the readathon is here, but it is a Harry Potter themed readathon based on the N.E.W.T.s (Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Tests) hosted by G at Book Roast. Basically, you choose a wizarding career based on an amazing career guidebook G has created and then you must complete certain prompts or “exams” to reach your career. All of the guidelines and materials are linked here.
I chose to go for Divination Professor which required me to read 7 books and I’ve done it! Here is what my reading path looked like in August:
A: A white book – Wishing for Birds by Elisabeth Hewer
E: A short story or collection of – The Prospectors (story) by Karen Russell
O: The last book you acquired – Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Defense Against the Dark Arts
A: A book that’s black under the dust jacket – Golden Hill by Francis Spufford
E: The first book that you remember from your TBR – Wizards in Space Vol. 3 by Various
A: Ends on an even number of pages – Dream Animals: A Bedtime Journey by Emily Winfield Martin
History of Magic
A: A fantasy – Saga Vol. 4 by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples
Those are all the books that I read to complete my N.E.W.T.s! I was on a role so I kept going and I managed to read 7 more books which I’ll list for fun:
- Orange World and Other Stories by Karen Russell
- 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl by Mona Awad
- Outer Order, Inner Calm by Gretchen Rubin
- The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fuck by Sarah Knight
- Persepolis 1 & 2 by Marjane Satrapi
- Food Rules by Michael Pollan
This readathon really reinvigorated my reading in general, I read 14 books in August which is more than I’ve read in any month in the past 2 years. I actually enjoyed my books that weren’t for the N.E.W.T.s overall much more than those that were, but that’s ok it was still a blast!
Reading as a community and specifically knowing that people around the world were all reading for the N.E.W.T.S. at the same time really created a feeling that I realized had been missing for me for a long time. It brought back memories of being a child and just sitting side by side with my best friend and reading for hours on end. Not doing anything else, only checking in with each other once in a while, and being perfectly content this way. In fact, Harry Potter was, of course, our favorite book to read together. We would preorder them on Amazon and when they finally arrived at our respective doorsteps I would run over to her house and we would just read with each other for hours, every once in a while whispering a quick “oh my god, did you get to this part?” or “can you believe this?!”
I didn’t realize how much I missed what I’ll call “literary comradery.” What a pleasure that technology has given us the ability to read with people all over the world. My closest friend and I have also decided that we’re going to try to incorporate more of this silent comradry into our friendship. Who says that as adults all of our hangouts have to revolve around a specific purpose or a certain level of chattiness? What happened to just lounging around and reading or working side by side like Hogwarts students in Gryffindor tower?
So all in all, this was a fantastic experience. The N.E.W.T.s inspired me to read more than I had in 2 years, start working on my blog again, strengthen a friendship, and get deeper into tarot (which I will also write about soon)! I would absolutely love to hear about anyone else’s N.E.W.T.s experience, so if you’ve made a wrap up on any platform please leave it down below in the comments! Happy Reading 🙂