Tuesday, September 18, 2007

My Newest Hero

How could I have missed out on Harry Potter all these years? I’m making up for lost time as I immerse myself in Harry’s world of fantasy.

All too often lately I’ve found guilt and anger to be my current companions. As I finished the end of Book 1 in the middle of the night last week, I realized how nice it is sometimes to escape the real world and leave behind the negative feelings that can weigh us down.

I love everything about this story. I love Harry himself, with his wild black hair and his lightning scar on his forehead. I love to hate the Dursleys, the Muggles family where Harry grew up. I love the wonderful Weasley family with their flaming red hair and their penchant for getting in trouble. I love Hermione, the lovable know-it-all who comes from a Muggles family. I love Hogwart School, with its cast of colorful characters including Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, and Professor Gileroy Lockhart. I love Hagrid, the giant who looks out for Harry and his friends. I love the owls, who carry messages and packages. In particular, I love Harry’s owl Hedwig. I love the fact that people in the pictures continue to move and even leave and return.

I adore the game of Quidditch, an elaborate game using 4 balls that is played on flying broomsticks and ends only when the Golden Snitch is caught by one team’s Seeker. I so want a Nimbus 2000 broomstick to fly around on. (Maybe it’s time to cash in the hot-air balloon ride.)

I’m still only on Book 2, “The Chamber of Secrets”. At this rate I can last for quite a while, with 5 books left to go. But I will be sad when I finally read the end of Book 7 and this fantasy world has no more stories for me.

Harry Potter is my role model and hero these days. He deals so incredibly well with adversity. He is so loyal to his friends. He’s not a stuck-up goody-two-shoes, but rather a real boy who takes on the world with the idea of saving it.

Harry Potter, much better than Valium for putting things in perspective!


Blogger Kristin said...

I haven't read any of them!

11:41 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kristin -- I'm surprised. I thought you were one of those people who read the books as they came out. I could just picture you walking along a Capitol Hill sidewalk with Harry Potter under your nose!

4:28 PM  
Blogger Ulysses said...

You might also try listening to them on CD -- the guy who does the reading is fabulous, and he's got a great characterization of each character.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Pauline said...

I must be one of the two people in the world that doesn't like the Harry Potter books. Sad but true.

7:31 PM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

I've heard that the CD's are great.

Some people are Harry Potter people, others just don't get it at all. It's so interesting.

Guilt and anger are big problems for Harry, too. No wonder you're enjoying them so much!

And believe me, you won't be sad at the end. The end is GREAT, perfect.

8:40 PM  
Blogger Ruth D~ said...

I know these books are good. My sone read the first one to my husband and I as we took a vacation car trip. He was seven. He just finished the last volume at age 18. But I'll probably still never read them> Maybe i should get the tapes.

9:15 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Ulysses -- I've never listened to a "book on tape", which I suppose now means "on CD". Maybe I'll check the CD's out.

Pauline -- I'm curious to know WHY you don't like the Harry Potter series. I had always dismissed it because I'm generally not a fan of fantasy, having never really understood the Hobbit Trilogy. I surprised myself when I realized how much I was enjoying reading Book 1.

Reya -- Let's see, how many thousand pages do I have until the end? I like the fact that there are stories within stories even in each book. It's interesting that these books can be read on so many levels. It would be fun to have a book discussion including some 10-year-olds and some people our age. I'll bet we all take away something different.

RuthD -- I've heard the books are fun to read aloud. Maybe you and your husband would enjoy them!

10:59 PM  
Blogger Pauline said...

i loved the Hobbit Trilogy and have read those books over and over. I read the first HP and was bored from beginning to end. The writing seems clumsy to me. I was mightily disappointed that I just cound not (and cannot) see what all the fuss is about.

7:34 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Pauline -- I guess it is like Reya said: Some people are Harry Potter people, and some are not.

8:11 AM  
Blogger Ulysses said...

I liked the story, the world, but I didn't like the writing. Too many words per idea, always the same pace. It's part of why I like them better on CD.

3:37 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

Barbara - what fun, and how lucky you are to have so much of it to read in front of you!!

We love the HP books at our house -- we did a HP birthday party for Jordi last year, complete with (earthbound) Quidditch practice, charms class, Herbology class, and pumpkin pasties and butterbeer.

I'd be happy to talk about them some time . . .

4:41 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Ulysses -- So far I have nothing critical to say. I'll let you know if I still feel that way at the end of Book 7!

Robin -- How much fun that you had a HP birthday party! I can just see Jordi as Harry catching the Golden Snitch.

This reminds me of the Little Mermaid birthday party we had when our daughter was 7. They acted out the entire store with costumes and props. I always liked birthday parties that featured more than cake and ice cream...

4:51 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

I have not read the books either (despite liking that sort of stuff). Haven't seen any of the movies either.

While there may be only 7 in the series, J.K. Rowling may add more. Don't forget, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy trilogy is a series of 5 books.

5:26 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

The stories and plots are definitely well contrived and appeal to most people I know. I think they've done a great job on the movies too. They're lucky they could keep all the same actors throughout so far. We feel we know them personally by now!
My husband is a huge fan and can't put them down!

3:31 PM  

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