Unfortunately, this "best gift" wasn't actually one of my presents, though I am the one that gave it. This year for Christmas I gave my sister Harry Potter Film Wizardry.
If you're a Harry Potter fanatic like myself and my sister (which should be evident from my two posts about Harry Potter, found here and here), this should definitely go on your wish list. Or, use some gift cards or Christmas money and buy it immediately! You can get it from the Indigo website here or on Amazon here or from your local bookstore. Seriously, go now. You're still not convinced? OK, let me tell you a little more about why it's amazing.
It has a ton of inside information about the movies. Tons. You want to know how they made Fawkes? They tell you. How they dealt with the Dementors? Yep, you learn that too. Oh, and how they turned Ralph Fiennes into Voldemort? They fill you in on all that as well. With pictures!
There's also a ton of cool extras that the graphic design team made as well (those are some wickedly talented people!). They have the Yule Ball program, a catalogue for Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes, as well as some of Umbridge's decrees. Oh, and for the best part of this book, I'll show you a picture I took of my sister on Christmas Day...
That right there, my friends, is the Marauder's Map. I'll let you digest that for a moment.
Jaw off the floor? Good. This is the most "real" Marauder's Map we Muggles will ever get. So cool.
What I really loved about this book is that they made sure to put in writings from the producer, David Heyman, and production designer, Stuart Craig. This really emphasized the fact that these people have absolutely loved their jobs for the past decade. Jealous of them? Because I am a little bit, and I've only just started my career! :) Each major cast member got to reminisce about the last ten years and their feelings about the series. It was really interesting to read about what everyone thought and all the behind the scenes bits that we would have never known otherwise.
Now, please tell me that you are sold on this book. Not quite yet? Well, here, I'll show you a compilation of some of the pages I found online.
You must be ready to go out and buy it now, aren't you? :) I know it seems like I'm being a bit pushy and I swear I'm not being paid by them to promote this, but really, this is a great book for any Harry Potter fan. Really. I actually wish I had a copy for myself. I encourage all of you to check it out and let me know what you think!
Enough about that, and now for a quick update on The Christmas Clock. I actually finished reading the book just after I wrote the blog post about it last week. It had a really sweet ending, and tied things up just as I wanted them too. I felt like it actually had a bit of a Miracle on 34th Street ending to it, but I don't want to give anything away, so I will leave it at that :) I still really recommend that book and think it's worth a read no matter what time of year it is!