Harry Potter: 4 Favorite Characters and Their Christmas Reading Lists
As dedicated Harry Potter fans, we all know that Christmas is a big deal at Hogwarts. Many students leave for the term to return to their families, and everyone gets a nice break from their studies. But what do your favorite witches and wizards do during their holiday?
They read of course.
Today, we’re imagining what books might grace some of our favorite Harry Potter characters’ reading list over the Christmas holiday.
Oh, what to say about Bellatrix Lestrange. She is both capable and intelligent, loyal, and a powerful witch. However, she dedicated herself to a cause of pure evil: Lord Voldemort’s crusade to purify the wizarding world.
She has done terrible things, and she’s quite literally crazy. Her time in Azkaban confirmed the earlier and ensured the latter. Ultimately, her mental decline intensified her worst traits, something easily noticeable as the Harry Potter novels progress.
Due to that, her holiday book selections are a little dark and macabre.
Come on, of course the Bard is on Bellatrix Lestrange’s reading list. We’re going to make the assumption you already know what Macbeth is about. (If not, here’s a plot summary.)
Shakespeare’s tragedies are full of murder, intrigue, guilt and morality, and ultimate revenge. Macbeth in particular features a lot of death, human suffering, betrayal, and witches (whom are largely to blame for Macbeth’s tragedy).
At this point, we should all just assume Bellatrix enjoys the play even though it was written by a Muggle.
The two characters fanatically follow an evil mastermind (i.e. the Joker and Lord Voldemort). They also love their masters, and because of that, they’re willing to do whatever it takes to make them happy. And quite often that includes someone dying a pretty terrible death.
Minerva McGonagall is, personally, my favorite Harry Potter character. The stern and strict head of Gryffindor, she exudes all the greatest qualities of what Gryffindor stands for. She is brave and fair-minded. However, her greatest trait, is her quiet caring and kindness for her students.
And who could forget the dry wit which shined throughout the books and movies.
Minerva’s picks are much more in-line with what you would expect from a strict, strong female Gryffindor.
Outlander is a mixture of several genres: historical fiction, romance, action-adventure, and fantasy. But it’s best known for the romantic elements and plotlines, and it’s a deeply intimate portrayal of love and sex between two thoroughly sympathetic and beautiful characters.
However, expanding beyond the romance, it also portrays two heroic and brave individuals as the main protagonists: Claire and Jamie. They are selfless and bravely fight against overwhelming forces to protect one another. All qualities Minerva would appreciate as a Gryffindor.
Jane Eyre is a lot to unpack. You have to imagine Bronte’s sensibilities in Jane Eyre would have spoken to McGonagall. As one of the few female professors at Hogwarts, a house leader, and a leader in the Order of the Phoenix to boot, one can easily understand the role of Bronte’s themes on gender and class relations are important to McGonagall in her role as a female leader and role-model to young students at Hogwarts.
Back to another favorite baddie of the Harry Potter universe. Lucius Malfoy is another intelligent, ruthless, and cruel member of Lord Voldemort’s Death Eaters. However, he differs from many other followers of the dark lord.
Unlike many of his brethren, he is an opportunistic social climber with no true loyalty to the Dark Lord’s cause. While a unrepentant bigot, he joins Voldemort more to share in the glory and rewards of the first and second war. His true nature as an opportunist is revealed in the aftermath of both wars.
His books are exactly what you’re thinking.
The 48 Laws of Power
The name itself is reason enough for this title to be on Malfoy’s reading list. The book is a cult classic and has sold 1.2 million copies, a feat in-and-of itself. It’s one of the most requested books in prison libraries, and quoted by many celebrities and successful business executives.
Niccolo Machiavelli wrote The Prince in the 16th century and dedicated the book to Lorenzo di Piero de Medici. It was an attempt to get back in the Medici family’s good graces and emerge from Florentine exile.
The book is widely considered the beginning of modern political philosophy. It describes how princes might sustain their glory and survival by justifying the use of immoral means to achieve those ends. While there is debate over whether The Prince is political satire or outright deceit, Malfoy would probably ignore the subtle connotations and take the treatise at face value.
Good ole half crazy, paranoid Mad-Eye Moody. As one of the most famous aurors of his age, Moody was tough and brave, a powerful wizard who supported Dumbledore and the Order of the Phoenix through both the first and second wars with Lord Voldemort.
He was also paranoid. As an auror, he had filled Azkaban with dark wizards and Death Eaters. Moody constantly feared danger or death from a former prisoner or escapee.
Mad-Eye Moody’s reading list are as eclectic and gritty. They’re good reads, and you can’t go wrong with these books.
Mad-Eye Moody is a Rorschach fanboy. Think about it. Both characters seeing in moral black and whites, there are lots of shapes and patterns but no grey. But that’s exactly what they are. Despite their moral absolutism, they are the grey area in the middle.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a spy novel loosely based on Kim Philby and the Cambridge Five. It follows George Smiley, one of John le Carre’s recurring characters, reentering the intelligence world and investigating a mole in the Circus (aka British Secret Intelligence Service). Once again, Smiley encounters Karla, his Russian counterpart and nemesis.
Aurors are essentially the wizarding world’s police, soldiers, and spies all in one pretty package. Considering Moody’s forced retirement for paranoia, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy appeals to Moody as a retired auror.
Reading is an important practice in the Harry Potter Universe.
J.K. Rowling doesn’t take time to describe the televisions wizards and witches are watching. In fact, readers should assume the wizarding world doesn’t use them. Instead, she makes a point to talk about the books, magazines, and papers they are reading.
So go ahead. Close up shop for a few weeks and enjoy the holidays with your family. But don’t forget to pick up and enjoy a good book this holiday.