Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Harry Pott-ober!: Annual Harry Potter Re-Read
In 2008, I decided to re-read the entire Harry Potter series during July. I'd read all the books before, a few of them more than once, but I'd never read them all in a row. It took me about 3-4 weeks to read the entire series. I was a big Harry Potter fan before doing this re-read, but after finishing the entire series at once, I was completely obsessed. I literally eat, slept, and breathed Harry Potter (a level of obsession equaled only by my love for Twilight, which I read in October 2008). The books are so much more real and complex when you read them together. I was able to appreciate the subtle hints in earlier books to things that would become important later. I enjoyed the re-read so much that I decided to do it every summer. I read the series again in July 2009 and loved it just as much.
This year, I put off the third annual re-read until October, so it would be fresh in my mind when Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I comes out in November. I started Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (I read the British versions even though I'm in the U.S.) today.
In honor of my Harry Potter Re-Read, I'm going to feature Harry Potter throughout the month of October.
I'll start with a question:
When Did You Discover Harry Potter?
I worked at Barnes & Noble in the summer of 2000, after my freshman year of college. Prior to this job, I'd never heard of Harry Potter. To be honest, I was just starting to get really into reading after not reading a whole lot in high school (of course, my light reading load is a heavy load for most people). The two series that customers were always asking me about were the Left Behind series and the Harry Potter series. I quickly realized that I had no interest in the Left Behind series, but Harry Potter intrigued me. At this time, there were three books out; the fourth book was to be published in July. Employees of Barnes & Noble have the super-cool perk of borrowing hard cover books. That's how I read the first three Harry Potter books. I liked the first two pretty well, but I loved the third book. I was ecstatic for the release of the fourth book.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was the first book to be sold at midnight. I worked at the store that evening. It was loads of fun. We dressed up in capes and fake glasses and fooled around all night. I remember going to the back and sneaking a peak at the first page of the book, but even the employees weren't allowed to look at the book before midnight. Midnight was complete chaos. People were shouting both in excitement and frustration. One idiot man trampled a few kids to get to the front of the line faster. I remember another woman yelling because she thought we got something wrong with her pre-order. It's funny how negative aspects of an event are often easier to remember than positive ones. But if I pull far into my mind, I can vividly recall seeing dozens of little kids sitting on the floor at 12:15 eagerly turning the pages of the book. I imagine many stayed up all night. It was a night I'll never forget and truly turned Harry Potter into super-stardom.
Posted by Alison Can Read at 9:32 PM