Tag: J.K. Rowling

Vans Unveils New Harry Potter-Themed Collection!

Exciting news for both Harry Potter fans AND fashion fans! According to Buzz the shoe brand Vans have unveiled a first look at their Harry Potter themed collection of upcoming shoes! The collection will feature shoes named after each of the Hogwarts Houses. Sk8-Hi for Gryffindor, Era for Slytherin, Authentic for Ravenclaw, and Classic Slip-On for Hufflepuff. Each shoe contains colors and details connecting them to their respective classes, with the official crest logo and distinct material. Vans had been building up to this reveal for quite a while, teasing the fanbase with a video on Instagram.

 

 

The official release date has yet to be announced, it has been confirmed by Vans that the shoes will be available to both men and women. The shoes will be supplanted by a line of Harry Potter accessories as well. Below, you can see a few of the photos from the line that have been circulating online:

 

 A pair of yellow shoes sitting side by side

Image Via twitter

A pair of white sneakers sitting side by side

Image Via Twitter

A green pair of sneakers sitting side by side

Image via Twitter 

Gryffindor will be a mix of red and gold, Slytherin will be a snake-like green, Ravenclaw will be its signature blue, and Hufflepuff will be all-black with subtle yellow striping. There is no further information yet but you can follow Vans on their website to see further updates as they come! Until then, we’ll be hyping ourselves to get these and wear them!

 

 

Featured Image Via Vans

Mother's Day card with flowers

5 Times We Found the Best Moms in Books

This Sunday is Mother’s Day, and what better way to celebrate than with a list of super awesome literary moms!

 

1. Molly Weasley from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

 

Molly Weasley with Harry Potter

image via pottermore

 

When she wasn’t busy planning a wedding, scolding the twins, or cooking up something for dinner, Molly Weasley could be found protecting her children at the Battle of Hogwarts. Knowing Harry Potter’s situation, she never batted an eye at taking him anywhere and everywhere with her and her clan of red-heads. Whether it was Christmas vacation or a trip to the Quidditch World Cup, Molly made sure Harry knew he had a second mother in her. She went after Bellatrix Lestrange when her daughter Ginny nearly died at her hands, leaving her the most iconic quote in the whole book: “Not my daughter, you bitch.” Any mom looks great in comparison to Petunia Dursley, but I don’t think any of them can cook quite like Molly.

 

2. Marilla Cuthbert from Anne of Green Gables

 

Marilla Cuthbert

image via cbc

 

When Anne rolls into Green Gables for the first time with Matthew Cuthbert, Marilla is neither impressed or amused. They didn’t want an orphan girl who talked too much or day-dreamed, they wanted a boy who could help the aging Matthew in the field. By the time Anne has spent her first night, Marilla has already begun to take on motherly duties. We can argue she isn’t the best mother in literature, but she was exactly what Anne needed. In a world that so badly wanted to crush Anne’s creativity, Marilla gave her enough room to let it grow, though not always willingly. Most importantly, Marilla was Anne’s first real mother figure that she could remember. Anne spent years in and out of orphanages after her real parents died before she could walk and talk. Truthfully, anyone that can put up with so many of Anne’s mistakes and shenanigans deserves to be on this list.

 

3. Ruth McBride from The Color of Water

 

IMAGE VIA THE NEW YORK TIMES

When James McBride started writing his memoir, I don’t think he knew the way the world would fall in love with his mother. The book is told in two narratives: McBride tells his story about the struggles he faced growing up black with a white mom, and Ruth tells her story growing up Jewish in the South. I’m breaking the mold here and choosing a non-fictional mom, but if you’ve read this book you know just how touching Ruth is. She raised twelve children, mostly by herself. She had no family to rely on other than her husband’s and their children. If ever there was a super-mom, she was Ruth McBride.

 

4. Kat Hall from If I Stay

 

Kat Hall with Mia Hall on Halloween

image via popsugar

Everyone needs a mom that will keep them over-caffeinated and bear with them through the early years of playing an instrument. Gayle Forman writes Kat as an awesome rocker mom to a cello-playing teenager. Their personalities couldn’t be more opposite, but they couldn’t have a closer relationship. It’s so clear in every page that Kat supports any and every decision Mia makes. Go to Juliard or stay in Portland with your boyfriend? Most moms would say “you’re going to college” but not Kat. Not many moms would slap noise cancelling headphones onto their baby and bring them into a rock concert, but it is this that makes Kat so special. Her unconditional love for her children mixed with her desire to treat them like small adults qualifies her for fictional mom of the year.

 

5. Mrs. Fuentes from Perfect Chemistry

 

 

The Fuentes boys stole our hearts in this series, but the real star is their mother who raised all three of them by herself. Living on the Southside of Chicago is never easy. Gang wars make it so you’re never safe, and you can’t always count on the police to protect you. Mrs. Fuentes goes through so much with these boys. First she moves them to Mexico to save their lives, and she eventually moves them back once the issues die down. It’s clear through the whole series she is protective of her sons, and that sometimes comes across with a bit of a fierce attitude. There’s no doubt she would do anything to protect her boys.

 

What do you think of our list? Who is your favorite literary mama?

featured image via morgan county news

The Top 10 Best ‘Harry Potter’ Teachers

It’s Teacher Appreciation Week here at Bookstr and you should be appreciating the teachers across the world! Teachers face extremely difficult jobs, having to manage large classes and educate with often little reward. To showcase what makes teachers so special, let’s examine the teachers of Harry Potter, ranking them from the worst to the best. Now, this is just on their merit’s as teachers, not on them as individuals or people, merely on their skills in the classroom. Who are the best and who are the worst? Let’s dive in and find out!

 

10. Dolores Umbridge

 

Dolores Umbridge, a middle aged woman dressed in a pink sweater stands at attention

Image via Harry Potter wiki

Holding the position of Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, Dolores Umbridge was unquestionably the worst in the series history, both as a professor (and a human being but let’s stick to the rules!) Despite her sickly sweet demeanor, Dolores Umbridge was appointed by the Ministry of Magic to oversee the school and her presence was instantly an oppressive one. A vicious bully and tormentor, she inflicted harsh punishments on her students for misbehavior, including making Harry carve the words “I MUST NOT TELL LIES” over and over again into his own skin! She also created a hostile work environment, expressed outright contempt for Hogwarts education system, and consistently challenged Dumbledore’s authority, which just made her a terrible professor. And she even refused to teach her students Defense Against the Dark Arts, making her outright useless as a source of education! Umbridge is unquestionably a terrible professor and not one you should admire. At all.

 

9. Severus Snape

 

Severus Snape standing in black cloak against a purple background

Image via Potter talk

The Potions master until Order of the Phoenix and then Half-Blood Prince, Snape is now admired for his love for Lily Potter and for secretly protecting Harry during his time at Hogwarts. But there’s no doubt he was a horrible teacher, downright abusive towards Harry and exhibiting favoritism towards Slytherin. He bullies students constantly, especially Harry, Neville, and Ron, putting them on the spot with difficult questions and making them feel constant anxiety in his presence. It’s not fair for Snape to pick on his students as much as he does, especially for a grudge he should have gotten over a long time ago. While he may be a good person deep down, Snape has too many issues to make him a valuable teacher.

 

8. Gilderoy Lockhart

 

Gildeory Lockhart stands in a golden uniform against a dark backdrop

Image via Pottermore

Lockhart skated by on good looks, charm and blatant lies. Lockhart wrote about encounters with dark creatures, painting himself as a perfect hero, easily able to dispatch fearsome monsters the world over, but all the books he wrote were actually fabrications and completely false. This made him a useless educator when he was hired for position of Defense Against the Dark Arts, often making a buffoon of himself and skating by on the skin of his teeth. When he was asked to kill the Basilisk terrorizing Hogwarts, Lockhart attempted to flee, clearly showing once and for all that he was utterly unqualified for his job.

 

7. Horace Slughorn

 

Horace Slughorn standing in a well tailored suit in front of a bunch of old photographs

Image via Harry Potter wiki

The Potions master, Slughorn wasn’t a horrible professor but he wasn’t a good one either. He generally played favorites with students, hosting club meetings for students who could pull favors for him after graduation. Slughorn put himself above his students, being more self-serving than anything else, but he was at least competent as a professor and gave Harry a more positive experience as a Potions professor than Snape ever did.

 

6. Filius FLitwick 

 

The diminutive Filius Flitwick standing in a tuxedo and holding a wand

Image via Pininterest

A supportive mentor to his students, Filius was a middle of the road professor, neither particularly good nor particularly bad. But he was always very nice to his classes, teaching them spells as best he could. Although not a massive presence in the books, what little we saw of Flitwick led us to believe he would be a perfectly acceptable professor, just not a particularly memorable one. Which, sometimes, is the best you can ask for!

 

5. Rubeus Hagrid

 

The towering figure of Rubeus Hagrid clad in furs

Image via Harry Potter wiki

The half-giant and beloved friend to Harry, Hagrid was a kind educator who had a deep love for the creatures of the wizarding world. He turned this passion into the official professor for Care of Magical Creatures, allowing students the opportunity for a hands on approach to caring for monsters and critters. He had a very deep knowledge of monsters, allowing him to provide his students with an intimate look at them. However, his deep love of creatures sometimes made him underestimate how dangerous they could be, resulting in a few potentially deadly encounters during his time as a professor.

 

4. Rolanda Hooch

 

Image via Harry Potter Wiki

A valuable teacher to her students, Madame Hooch taught her students how to fly and play Quidditch, a dangerous game that required a firm hand to prevent students from crashing or killing each other. Hooch was up to the task, providing a stern and competent presence who punish students harshly but encouraged them deeply for their successes. Under her tutelage, Harry became a very wizard of the skies and always stayed calm, even as she was being screamed at for providing calls people didn’t like as a referee during Quidditch matches.

 

3. Pomona Sprout

 

Pomona Sprout stands in a greenhouse clad in Herbology attire with a witch's hat on

Image via Bustle

Pomona Sprout is a great professor who doesn’t get a lot of screen time but her lesson plans and overall demeanor showcase her as one of the best teachers despite her limited appearances. She follows a logical profession, getting her students used to ‘easy’ magic plants before working them up slowly towards the harder stuff, while making sure everyone is safe and creating a fun environment at the same time with her hands on approach to herbology. She’s pretty great and we only wish we saw more of her at work in the greenhouse.

 

2. Remus Lupin

 

The dapper Remus Lupin stands in a well lit room in a suit and tie

Image via Bustle

One of the best professors and no doubt the best teacher of Defense Against the Dark Arts, Lupin heads the class during Prisoner of Azakaban. Very knowledgable in his studies, Remus Lupin creates a hands on atmosphere to the work he performs in the classroom, allowing students the opportunity to apply their skills in a practical, yet controlled setting, testing them against real dangers without putting them in actual danger. He’s also humorous, wise, and very down to earth, even taking the Hogwarts Express to get to know the student body better. Unfortunately, his one flaw is that he’s a werewolf and results in his eventual resignation. Although he takes steps to control his other side, unfortunately being a werewolf is a very serious risk on campus and although he never hurt anyone, he could have. Still, Lupin remains one of the best teachers at Hogwarts and a presence we to which it was incredibly difficult to bid farewell.

 

1. Minerva Mcgonagall

 

An elderly lady wearing a witch's hat and holding a glass of wine.

Image via Vulture

Minerva is the best professor at Hogwarts, with a tough, no nonsense, and fearless disposition as professor of Transfiguration and Deputy Headmistress, the type of teacher who will challenge you but doesn’t play favorites and always is fair to you in the end no matter who you are. She loves all her students despite her hard shell, and only pushes them to make them excel. While many students are scared of her initially but learn to love her when they truly understand her. She’s a staple at Hogwarts during Harry’s time and becomes a true leader to the student body, just as beloved as Dumbledore. We love you!

 

 

Featured Image Via Harry Potter Wiki

 

 

Priests Burn Books, Including ‘Harry Potter’ for Fear of Witchcraft

Looks like fears over Harry Potter being associated with Satan are still around. According to Sky News priests in northland Poland, known as the SMS From Heaven Foundation, have burned a number of books they consider to be sacrilegious, including Harry Potter books. Evangelical Christians have often spoken out against the Harry Potter series, believing that it promotes witchcraft and the satanic arts.

 

A comic depicting the 'dangers' of the Harry Potter series by Jack Chick

Image Via Wikipedia

 

Religious groups have often attacked the Harry Potter series, with Protestant, Orthodox, and Catholic groups arguing the groups promote witchcraft through its positive depiction through the series. Some groups have even called for the books to be banned outright. Numerous book burnings  during J.K. Rowling’s beloved series were destroyed, have taken place, so this latest bonfire is nothing new. The books have, however, been banned outright in countries such as the United Arab Emirates, however.

Other works went up in smoke in the SMS From Heaven Foundation’s burning, such as one of the Twilight novels by Stephanie Meyer. The works that were burned were posted on the group’s official Facebook page.

 

 

Featured Image Via Sky News