Last night I finished reading the fifth book in the Harry Potter series. I had just started reading the whole series about two-and-a-half weeks ago. I’ve seen all three of the movies thus far and was quite impressed with them, being immediately taken with the idea of this fantastic wizarding world existing right under the noses of those of us who aren’t witches or wizards.
But I’ll admit that I wasn’t ready to be as taken with the books as I was. I mean they’re supposed to be children’s books, if I’m not mistaken. I know that people of all ages have read them, which is good, but I half expected them to be much more juvinile. Sort of dumbed-down, if you will. They’re not.
J.K. Rowling has blown my mind. I’ve raced through these books faster than I did that copy of Hustler that my old pal Raymond Tan gave me in seventh grade. Albeit the end result was slightly different, but the content of both have left me feeling light headed.
I found that as I’d been reading the books, I had to keep going back to reread certain paragraphs. This has happened to me before, of course, when reading political science text books, or existential essays while in college, but that was because I wasn’t paying attention to what I was reading. In this case, I find that I’m so excited to find out what’s going to happen next, that I actually end up skipping large chunks of sentences and paragraphs so I can get to the next sentence and paragraph. I have to take a deep breath to calm myself and go back.
I don’t even want to think about what sort of geek this makes me, but to be honest, I don’t really care. But what I do realize now is why everyone was in such an uproar over these books. I now understand why people were waiting in line at midnight to buy the sixth book which came out not long ago.
I’ll be starting book six later this evening, which means I should be done with it by the weekend. Then I’ll find myself in an intolerable situation. It’ll be at least a year, if not two, before the seventh book comes out. At least if I wanted a new Hustler, I could find one of those every month, but two years? You’re killin’ me Rowling! Killin’ me.
So, there it is. I’ve said it. I’m officially addicted to Potter. I’m a Potterhead. I’m aching to get home so can get my hands on some more Potter. I think there will only be seven Potter books all together. But I can’t really express how badly I want to score an eighth of Potter.
The characters in these books are remarkable. You actually see them grow up and mature. Even the adults. Not only do they tell incredible stories, but they teach so much about human nature. There are few books out there that manage to stir the emotions in me that these books do. There were points where I wanted to cheer out loud and others where I had stop and laugh at myself cause my eyes were getting a little moist. (If you tell my friends I said that, though, I’ll kill you.) But the characters are continually evolving into these unbelievably complex people. It’s great for kids to read because it teaches them to recognize what might make certain people tick. There are undoubtedly factors in each and every one of our pasts that have had an indelible effect on who we are today, but how many of us take that into account when dealing with others? Few, I would say.
Anyway, not to ramble about these books, but if you haven’t read them, do it. I promise that you won’t be sorry. I was skeptical, but clearly I was wrong to be.