Harry Potter – A look back
Recently i started re-watching the Potter movies from the very beginning on blu-ray. I intend to start reading the books from the beginning for a sixth time, soon. It got me thinking about the first time i heard the name, Harry Potter. I was about seven years old and the image on the front cover, of a kid standing in front of a huge scarlet steam train, caught my eye. Ever since i read that first page i have been hooked on the books and the movies. I never imagined that the book i’d read, at that moment, would become the literary and movie phenomenon that it has done.
In a way i grew up with the Potter books, each year i developed so did Harry and his friends. It was an annual event when a Harry Potter book would be published and i would be practically itching to step back into the halls of Hogwarts and explore the Wizarding world alongside Harry, Ron and Hermione. J K Rowling provided me and countless others the opportunity to leave behind the real world and immerse ourselves in a place that wasn’t all that hard to believe in.
So why is it that the Potter books became so successful? One of the main reasons, in my opinion, is that it offered readers a chance to be a part of another world. The Wizarding World is a place everyone wants to go to: everyone wants to try a chocolate frog, get their wand from Ollivanders and play Quidditch. Rowling’s ability to paint this world as believable, as genuine, makes us as readers feel a part of it. We can all find something in common with one of the characters or find something to relate to in the books.
Another reason, perhaps an obvious one, is that the books are awesome! The plot line is a tried and tested battle against good and evil, yes, but it is also rife with unique twists and turns and i don’t know about you but i was always wondering what was going to happen next. J K Rowling has the ability to draw you in from the very first page and not let go until the last and leave you hungry for the next book. Her world is rich in characters, places, history and culture and there is rarely a moment when their isn’t something new and exciting to discover. Each book is like a sweet shop, so much to choose from, to savour and enjoy.
I, for one, will never tire of returning to Hogwarts. Harry Potter is a series that, no matter how many times it’s read, will still offer some new detail you missed the first time, some clue or sentence that you might have forgotten. J K Rowling must be commended on providing readers with these books and another world to escape to.