My eyeballs have been thoroughly blessed by the gift to the world that is the illustrated version of The Tales of Beedle The Bard.
Seriously this book is gorgeous. I hadn’t read Beedle the Bard before this and I actually can’t fathom why anyone would want to read one without pictures?! Also this reminds me why I’m SO glad they’re doing illustrated editions of all the Harry Potters. My new author life goal is: have a book illustrated. I AM ALL HEART EYES, OK. This is spectacular.
So today I’m going to:
★ Do a little review of Beedle!
★ And also absolutely FLOOD you with gorgeous pictures of the insides.
★ Aaaaand I’ll finish off with a little Harry Potter tag because ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ tags are too fun and I actually don’t talk about Harry Potter a lot around here?! So you definitely want to hear all my opinions. I know you do. I see it in your eyes.
Thank you to Bloomsbury Australia for the review-copy!
THE TALES OF BEEDLE THE BARD by JK Rowling
A spectacular full-colour illustrated edition of J.K. Rowling’s fairytale classic The Tales of Beedle the Bard, with breathtaking illustrations by all-round genius and national treasure Chris Riddell.
The dazzlingly brilliant Chris Riddell brings his magical illustration talents to J.K. Rowling’s gloriously inventive The Tales of Beedle the Bard in a fully illustrated colour edition of this essential classic for Harry Potter fans. Translated from the runes by Hermione Granger, the volume includes ‘The Tale of the Three Brothers’, familiar to readers of Harry Potter from the crucial role it played in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Mischievous and witty, these five rollicking tales are a deeply satisfying read in the tradition of all great fables and fairytales. Kindnesses are rewarded and selfishness shown to be the ruin of many a wizard. Burping cauldrons, hairy hearts and cackling stumps are met along the way. Each of the tales is accompanied by a deliciously subversive and insightful commentary by Professor Albus Dumbledore, all brought vividly to life with Riddell’s trademark wit and elegance.
My favourite part of this was absolutely the illustrations by Chris Riddell!
The stories were great (a little gory and entirely magical, ha!) but the illustrations just captured the essence of the wizarding world and I couldn’t stop staring at the epic double-page spreads, the characters’ expressions, the detail and the creative depictions! I will forever be disgruntled that not all books of ever are illustrated. If you’re going o read Beedle the Bard, I say 10/10 go for the Illustrated edition.
As for the stories… I quite liked them! Although I’m glad for Dumbledore’s footnotes for a lot because I wasn’t sure what the point was except “DEATH COMES FOR YOU” which is a great thing to tell all the little wizarding children, way to go Beedle. (I laughed at the section where a witch tried to “rewrite” the stories to be more applicable and sweet and kind…and was reminded of that time someone tried to rewrite Harry Potter to be “Christian” and it was so freaking bad lmao. I wonder if JK Rowling was poking fun? I HOPE SO.)
My favourite was The Fountain of Fair Fortune! It was so sweet how a group of people could band together and help each other and become stronger and fill the lonely hollows in their hearts…even without magic. Awww.
Obviously The Tale of Three Brothers is important considering Deathly Hallows centres around it, but I would’ve picked the Elder Wand so oops.
Anyhow! I really enjoyed this! It was light and Dumbledore’s footnotes were funny aND THE ILLUSTRATIONS AFJDSKALD. Excuse me while I just go back to staring at them forever.
This is slightly adapted from the “Ultimate Harry Potter Tag” because 30 questions was way too much for someone who has forgotten like…half the books. Excuse me.
1. FAVOURITE VS LEAST FAVOURITE BOOK?
I confess that I really need to reread because I’ve forgotten a lot! But I think Order Of The Phoenix is probably the least favourite??? 100pgs of a Quidditch match ahahah slay me now. AND DEATHLY HALLOWS MOST FAVOURITE. The feeeeelings.
2. FAVOURITE VS LEAST FAVOURITE MOVIE
I’ve only seen ONE MOVIE! And that was The Prisoner of Azkaban! Whoops haha.
3. FAVOURITE QUOTE
4. FAVOURITE FEMALE CHARACTERS
- Luna Lovegood! (STILL disgruntled that she didn’t have more page time!!)
- Hermione Granger (an actual queen I adore her so much)
- Molly Weasley (the ultimate mother bear)
- McGonagall (hAVE A BISCUIT POTTER…although lowkey think she could’ve just taken out Umbridge and Voldemort by herself, but fine)
5. FAVOURITE MALE CHARACTER
- Harry! (He was so grumpy and such an unwilling saviour of the world, I LOVE IT)
- George and Fred (because they are everything an annoying sibling should aspire to be)
- Kreature (he was relatable tbh)
- Neville Longbottom (an actual Softest Boy who should be protected forever)
6. FAVOURITE PROFESSOR
The only answer to this is ALWAYS going to be McGonagall, even though I have to google her name constantly. She was so perfectly composed, badass, untouchable, and deadly. In other words: life goals.
7. YOUR HOGWARTS HOUSE
SLYTHERIN REPRESENT. I also have a lot of Hufflepuff tendencies, which I think I act more like online, but woooow I am so ambitious and just a little deviously cunning (my sister can attest ¯\_(ツ)_/¯) and I always end up writing Slytherin characters myself because I LOVE THEM SO.
PS. I sort everything into Hogwarts houses. My characters, my family, my dog, my cereal…none are spared.
8. WHICH SPELL WOULD BE THE MOST USEFUL TO LEARN
How to make a Horcrux…
AHAHAH OK, SETTLE DOWN THERE, VOLDETTE.
9. IF YOU OWNED ONE OF THE THREE HALLOWS, WHICH WOULD IT BE?
Now I have read the story in Beedle’s tales and I know the point is you can’t cheat death so don’t be presumptuous and greedy etc etc. But let’s be real, you could do a LOT of damage by being invisible (which apparently was the “noble” choice). Like you could rob banks, steal art, stay in libraries after-hours reading, etc, etc.
I’d choose the Elder Wand though. (I told you I’m a Slytherin…) SEE ME, FEAR ME.
10. IS THERE ANY ASPECT OF THE BOOKS YOU’D CHANGE?
- I thoroughly dislike ALL the ships (sorrrry) but particularly I would make Hermione marry someone intelligent and kind and toss Ron in the ocean.
- I’d dedicate a whole book just to Luna’s life (I headcanon she is so very thoroughly autistic I LOVE HER)
- I’d skip the prolonged Quidditch scenes (oops)
- Get some actual unproblematic diversity in there ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ None of this off-the-page-in-retrospect stuff which doesn’t count.
- Knit myself a Weasley jumper (I’M AWARE THIS DOESN’T MAKE SENSE IN THE LIST BUT I WANTED TO SAY IT)
- Feature all the Houses!! Slytherin needed to show it’s good side (cunning doesn’t HAVE to equal evil) and give the Hufflepuffs more page time too!!