N.E.W.T.s magical readathon tbr | 2019

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Source: Book Roast


I’m taking part in this year’s magical readathon, hosted by G over at Book Roast on Youtube. It’s a month-long readathon organised for August, which follows on from April’s O.W.L.s readathon. After completing all my books for that one, I thought I’d carry on with next month’s challenge.

I thought I’d actually be organised unlike I was for the O.W.L.s, and plan out my books for the month, and share them with you all!


Like I said in my magical readathon results for the O.W.L.s, I am following the Curse Breaker career path. If you haven’t seen what I read last time, you can see it here.

I managed to read seven books for the challenge last time, so I’m fairly confident I can manage to do all of the challenges.

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Source: Book Roast

On average, I read around eight books a month, but for August I’m going to have to read nine in order to complete the challenge, so I tried not to pick anything that was too long!

Exam one: Ancient Runes

For ancient runes, I have to get an O – aka complete all three of the challenges set.

These are:

  • Read a book recommended by a friend
  • A book written in the past tense
  • A book that has been on your tbr for ages.


For the first one, I asked my friend Eilidh, who told me to read The Dry by Jane Harper. It’s a crime thriller I think, about a family that are murdered, and is told by a policeman. I haven’t looked up much about it, because I’d rather go into this one blind.

For a book written in past tense, I went with Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. I’ve got such a beautiful edition of this, which I bought when it won the Man Booker Prize and STILL haven’t read it. So this is going to get rid of some of my backlist books as well. I don’t actually know what it’s about, but it’s told in partly play format? Which is interesting. The first line starts: “On our wedding I was forty-six, she was eighteen.” So I’m pretty convinced it fits the prompt.

I have loads of books that have been on my tbr for ages, but I tried to go with something I’ve had for a while and haven’t thought about picking up recently. So I ended up picking The Girls by Emma Cline. I’m pretty sure it’s one of the oldest books on my TBR, which is terrible because it’s about cults and inspired by the Charles Manson family murders – two things I find really interesting!



Exam two: Arithmancy

For arithmancy, like ancient runes, I need another O to pass.

The three prompts for this exam are:

  • A book that ends on an even page number
  • Read a standalone
  • Read a book that’s longer than 350 pages.


For a book that ends on an even page number, I just went through my bookshelf until I found one that ended on an even page number that I was excited to read asap. For this one, I went with Burial Rites by Hannah Kent, which is 330 pages long. It’s about a woman who is condemned to death after murdering her lover, and is set in Iceland.

Picking a standalone wasn’t difficult, most of my books are standalones, because I read predominantly contemporary fiction and historical fiction, and they don’t usually get sequels. For this, I’m going with Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney. It’s about two women who used to date, and become friends with a journalist.

I’ve got quite a few books that are over 350 pages long, so that was fairly easy to pick out. For this, I went with Middlegame by Seanan McGuire, which I believe is 528 pages long. I’ve got it in Kindle version, so I’m hoping I can get through that fairly quickly!



Exam three: Defence Against the Dark Arts

Thankfully, for Defence Against the Dark Arts i only need an E, which is the first two prompts on the list.

So, my two prompts this time are:

  • Book that’s black under the dust jacket
  • The first book you remembered from your TBR


For a book that’s black under the dust jacket, I went with History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize the year Lincoln in the Bardo won. It’s about a teenager who lives in an ex-commune, when a family moves into the cabin across the lake from where she lives.

The first book I remembered from my TBR was actually a graphic novel – My Friend Dahmer by Derf Backderf. I was looking at tickets for a talk about serial killers (which unfortunately sold out), and remembered that I had a book about Jeffrey Dahmer, which jogged my memory about this one!


Exam four: Charms

And finally, my last exam of the month is to get an A in charms, which is fulfilling only one of the prompts. Hallelujah!

What I have to read is:

  • Read a book you think has a beautiful cover


For this I’ve gone with Sweet Bean Paste by Durian Sukegawa. It’s pink, blue and white pastel, which I just think is super aesthetically pleasing. It’s about a guy who sells dorayaki in a shop, and meets an older woman with a troubled past who teaches him how to make her sweet bean paste. There’s more to it than that, but it sounds cute anyway.



In total, to pass my N.E.W.T.s I’ve got nine books to read in August. I don’t think it’ll be that much of an issue, I normally read eight books on average anyway, but I don’t have audiobooks of any of these and some of them are a little bit chunky (aka Middlegame) so hopefully I can manage!

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