You know how I made my Quintessential Summer Book Tag Midsommar-themed, as I am apparently obsessed with that movie?
I decided that wasn’t enough.
WELCOME, FOLKS, TO THE MIDSOMMAR BOOK TAG.
Everyone, do the tag! Come on, do it! It feels really nice!
I will try to avoid spoilers. I’ll try VERY hard.
Oh, I meant for the movie. The following prompts are FULL of book spoilers.
The Ardor family
A book with a really dark beginning
I don’t remember the specifics of Unwind‘s opening.
I just know it starts dark and gets progressively worse.
I mean, one character’s parents believe God desires child sacrifice, which…nope. That is not a thing.
Even darker: Teenage Lauren shrugged that plot point off with, “Well, the Bible DOES say…”
Surprise. This prompt is about MY dark beginning now.
I could be a supervillain. I really could.
A main character who struggles with anxiety
Ruby’s scary panic attacks send her to child therapist Dr. Z.
She spends four books deconstructing her family, friendships, and jerk boyfriends.
In the process, she invents hair metal therapy and befriends the school leper.
A love interest you utterly despised
Anna and the French Kiss was supposed to a romance…I think.
In any other self-respecting romance novel, Etienne would be the bad guy.
“Selfish” is not the same as “complicated,” okay?
Hold out for someone who’s actually available.
A character you WANTED to be the love interest
Look…I developed a pretty immediate crush on Ronan Lynch in The Raven Boys.
Though I wasn’t sold on Blue as a character, I wanted her to romance Ronan so I could live through her vicariously.
That…did not happen.
An obnoxious character you loved
My first time through Unicorns of Balinor, I HATED Lori, as I assume Mary Stanton intended.
Upon rereading the series years later, Lori became my FAVORITE character.
Sure, she whines a lot, but I don’t blame her; Lori’s in a strange magical land with only her nemesis and a talking horse for comfort.
Everyone she meets despises Lori on sight. The boy she likes can’t stand her. Even the unicorns have nothing nice to say about her.
Lori is the ONLY person calling out the ridiculous tropes and plot contrivances. She’s the only one grumbling about a TRULY unfortunate situation.
She took care of those baby unicorns, didn’t she?
The series tries to make the “Bad Rider = Bad Person” argument and I DON’T BUY IT.
Lori is a hilarious personality. Her presence is a joy.
A brainy book or character
Stevie Bell goes to smart kid school with a bunch of smarties.
She makes it her mission to solve a decades-old cold case.
I have the desire but neither the skills nor the patience.
I salute thee, Stevie.
A setting that creeped you out
Maguire’s Oz is a creepy as hell.
Not sure if you’ve heard of the infamous Philosophy Club scene, but that scene really sums up the setting.
Don’t Google it at work.
A romance that made you uncomfortable
The main characters in Kale, My Ex, and Other Things To Toss in a Blender are 14 or 15 at the oldest.
They both have “spicy” interactions with their love interests and it’s…gross.
Teen boys trying to be suave already make me uncomfortable.
Hearing those boys dubbed “sexy” makes me ill.
A shocking character death
Whatever book I had in mind got SWEPT away by the following VERY spoiler-y death.
Dark Mage tried to trick me.
Uh-oh, one of our favorite mages turns evil, you say?
It MUST be cheerleader-turned-protagonist KARA!
Yeah, whatever. It’s OBVIOUSLY Emily. I see you trying to be twisty and it won’t work.
What I DIDN’T expect was Emily’s INCREDIBLY dark first act, i.e., KILLING OZZIE.
She STRAIGHT-UP MURDERS Ozymandius!
Did not see that coming AT ALL.
A redheaded character
Today’s redheaded prompt is a DOUBLE-FEATURE.
I present Puck and Puck.
Puck Connolly is described as having a ginger brother and hair the color of cliff grass. REDHEAD FOR SURE.
Julie Kagawa’s Puck is the romantic runner-up to Broody Bad Boy Ash.
OBVIOUSLY I was Team Puck. I knew mine was a lost cause, so I bailed after book one.
Oh, yep. Per Wikipedia, I was right.
A book with a weird, unusual, or trippy plot
The following conversation ensued when I tried to explain the plot of Woman World to my girlfriend:
“All the men start dying off.”
“So the women race the clock to save the men?”
“No, all the men die.”
“So they try to bring the men back?”
“NO, they’re DEAD.”
“What do the women do?”
“Run around topless, mainly. Make friends. Go to Blockbuster.”
“It’s SO funny, because they treat Blockbuster as these ancient ruins.”
“Do the men ever come back?”
“NO, it’s WOMAN world!”
A character who became the Chosen One
I remember my Warrior Cats days.
Firestar went from domestic gelding to tomcat in charge.
Technically, he is ALSO a redhead.
A character decision that made you scream
I will never forgive Remus Lupin for leaving his wife and child.
Especially how he tried to defend himself with claims of doing the right thing and protecting his family.
If you REALLY cared about that, you would have included Tonks in your decision-making.
The two of you could have come to a decision TOGETHER.
Instead, you ditched your PREGNANT wife IN THE MIDDLE OF A REGIME.
I…hate that. I hate it. If she’s TRULY your partner, TREAT HER LIKE ONE.
A character death that made you say, “Finally!”
Ol’ Severus was one of my first “morally ambiguous” characters.
(I was a 14-year-old evangelical when the final Harry Potter book came out. Moral ambiguity wasn’t my jam.)
I didn’t like the reactions to his death. Friends of mine called Snape a “hero” and “their favorite character” all of a sudden.
I know there’s “nuance” and “discussion” to be had, but…naw.
This dude caused so much harm.
I experienced seven books of Snape abusing various characters.
Don’t you tell me I should be sad to lose him.
A book that promised calm but caused you pain
How DARE you, Jane, Unlimited
Your silvery cover promised me whimsy and wonder.
I wanted a mystery.
I wanted self-discovery.
WHY DID YOU HURT ME LIKE THIS?
I loved Midsommar, but I can’t exactly recommend it.
If you want an emotional journey and don’t mind terror and gore, go watch it.
Content warnings include: murder-suicide, suicide, graphic violence, dubiously consensual sex, gory images, graphic nudity and sexuality, grief, trauma, flashbacks, anxiety, gaslighting, and emotional abuse
If you’d rather NOT sit through the movie but would like to do the tag, feel free.
As May Queen, the choice is yours.