Tags are keywords that readers attach to the books they’ve read. Sometimes they are accurately descriptive of the plot of a book, and sometimes they are based more on personal experience. Tag mashes – the combination of two tags describing one book – are alternately useful and hilarious for just that reason.
I use LibraryThing, an online tool for cataloging your own personal library, for tag mash searches because I’ve found they have a wide range of search results thanks to their many, thorough users, and because they always include familiar titles.
Today’s tag mash, in anticipation of summer: beach, epic
The Drawing of the Three (The Dark Tower, Book 2) by Stephen King
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Book 3) by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Book 5) by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4) by J.K. Rowling **
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2) by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Book 6) by J.K. Rowling
Chesapeake by James A. Michener
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough
The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel
Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
The Town and the City by Jack Kerouac
Ulysses by James Joyce
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
My burning question: Are there any beaches anywhere in Harry Potter? Did someone read these books on the beach – they’re certainly epics, and maybe therefore good for reading on the beach? Amazingly, the 7th Harry Potter book didn’t make the list. Is Deathly Hallows just not beach material?
Gravity’s Rainbow is definitely epic, but I’d warn against bringing Ulysses to the beach, unless you needed something to help you nap, or you are an extremely serious person who thinks even beach-going should be approached with an air of solemnity and dubiously engaging literary classics.
My favorite result: Clan of the Cave Bear! I haven’t read that since junior high! Maybe it’s meant to be the first of my summer beach reads. (It would definitely weigh down your beach bag, though. They’re not kidding when they say “epic.”)
To do your own tag mash, go to LibraryThing and search for two words separated by a comma. It’s fun and addictive.