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  • Kristina Elyse Butke

Festive Christmas Book Tag

Updated: Dec 31, 2021


Candy canes, wrapping paper, presents, orange peels, stars, pinecones, lights, on wood background; Festive Christmas Book Tag
Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

Merry Christmas! Today's holiday-themed blog post is sourced from We Write at Dawn and it's specifically centered around Christmas and all of its fluffy imagery. But it wouldn't be a book tag without books, so take a look at the tomes I chose for each of these fun little questions!


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1. A FICTIONAL FAMILY YOU WOULD LIKE TO SPEND CHRISTMAS DINNER WITH?


Two boys on a sailing ship overlooking a sunset on the sea. In Deeper Waters by FT Lukens

I really like Prince Tal's family in In Deeper Waters by F.T. Lukens. His siblings are such fun characters. And they're all royalty, so Christmas dinner would definitely be a giant feast!


2. A BOOKISH ITEM YOU WOULD LIKE TO RECEIVE AS A GIFT?

Lapel pin in silver, black, and gold, spelling Protagonist/Antagonist

I dig this Protagonist/Antagonist pin from the Literary Gift Company.


3. A FICTIONAL CHARACTER YOU THINK WOULD MAKE A PERFECT CHRISTMAS ELF?


Close up of a raven and a girl with blonde hair looking out at feathers. An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson

When I think of Christmas elves I think of goofy, happy characters that like to give presents...and I can't really choose a character like that. The closest thing I've read that comes to it are the fae, but their "goofiness" means tricks that don't always guarantee a happy outcome. I think of Lark from An Enchantment of Ravens, who has that kind of personality. Oh, and she turns the lead character into a rabbit just out of whimsy.


4. MATCH A BOOK TO ITS PERFECT CHRISTMAS SONG.


Barren trees in bluish white on a black background with crescent moon and stars. Winterwood by Shea Earnshaw.

Winterwood by Shea Earnshaw was a slow, somber fantasy in a winter landscape, and I know there are a few Christmas songs that can fit the bill, but the first one that popped into my head was "Sleep of the Child Jesus." When I was in high school and played in a Christmas ensemble that toured nursing homes, there was always a flute trio or quartet that played this song. It was so beautiful. I tried to find a flute arrangement on YouTube but couldn't find anything close to what I heard, so I found this harp arrangement that serves as a good substitute. I can still picture snowflakes falling silently in a forest as I listen to this song.

5. BAH HUMBUG. A BOOK OR FICTIONAL CHARACTER YOU’VE BEEN DISAPPOINTED IN AND SHOULD BE PUT ON THE NAUGHTY LIST?


Blank book with blank pages on blank background
Photo by Mediamodifier on Unsplash

There is a book I DNF'd almost instantly. I hated the narrative voice immediately and new I wouldn't survive the book, no matter how interesting it sounded. I was grateful I was able to return it. It's on my naughty list for showing so much promise but having such cumbersome narration (my opinion is definitely in the minority. From what I could see, this book is well-reviewed and well-loved).

6. A BOOK OR A FICTIONAL CHARACTER YOU THINK DESERVES MORE LOVE AND APPRECIATION AND DESERVE TO BE PUT ON THE NICE LIST?


Girl's face with cluster of flowers in different colors on black background. Diana Pinguicha's A Curse of Roses.

I feel like A Curse of Roses by Diana Pinguicha needs more love. I just popped on and it only has 60 Amazon reviews despite being an Editor's Pick. And I never hear anyone talking about it. It's such an interesting premise, about a princess who is cursed to be unable to eat because her meals turn into flowers. It's based on a Portuguese legend and I thought it was so interesting and well done!

7. RED, GOLD AND GREEN. A BOOK COVER THAT HAS A WONDERFULLY CHRISTMASY FEEL TO IT.


Green leaves, gold feathers, and a golden crown on a black background. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa

The cover to Julie Kagawa's The Iron King reminds me of a Christmas tree, even though it's definitely not a holiday story.

8. A BOOK OR SERIES YOU LOVE SO MUCH, YOU WANT EVERYONE TO FIND UNDER THEIR CHRISTMAS TREE THIS YEAR SO THEY CAN READ IT AND LOVE IT TOO?


Ghostly hands surround a frightened teenaged boy on a black background. The Taking of Jake LIvingston by Ryan Douglass

My go-to authors after reading a year's worth of YA are Holly Black, Brigid Kemmerer, and Margaret Rogerson, but I've mentioned their stuff in so many other book tags and I'm tired of choosing them in my posts over and over. So, I'm going to focus on another book I really liked...The Taking of Jake Livingston by Ryan Douglass. I read it as part of my fantasy project but it's not really fantasy; it's closer to horror/thriller and makes for a good ghost story. But I think it's much, much more than that. The book is hard for me to describe outside of me saying that I liked it very much, so here's the official description:

Sixteen-year-old Jake Livingston sees dead people everywhere. But he can’t decide what’s worse: being a medium forced to watch the dead play out their last moments on a loop or being at the mercy of racist teachers as one of the few Black students at St. Clair Prep. Both are a living nightmare he wishes he could wake up from. But things at St. Clair start looking up with the arrival of another Black student—the handsome Allister—and for the first time, romance is on the horizon for Jake.
Unfortunately, life as a medium is getting worse. Though most ghosts are harmless and Jake is always happy to help them move on to the next place, Sawyer Doon wants much more from Jake. In life, Sawyer was a troubled teen who shot and killed six kids at a local high school before taking his own life. Now he’s a powerful, vengeful ghost and he has plans for Jake. Suddenly, everything Jake knows about dead world goes out the window as Sawyer begins to haunt him. High school soon becomes a different kind of survival game—one Jake is not sure he can win.

This book is jam-packed and unlike anything I've ever read before given how much it tackles. I'm glad it was a NYT bestseller. Even so, I think more people need to read it. I would be happy if my friends and family decided to take a look at it and tell me what they think!


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This is a Christmas Day post for me, so there's not much time left for you to add this tag to your blogs, especially if you have plans for Christmas Eve in your timezone! But it's really fun and worth a try--if you add it to your blog, let me know in the comments below, and Merry Christmas!

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