Friday, May 09, 2014
Not everyone knows it, but I’m wild about Harry. Harry Potter, of course. When the final book hit the shelves, I was out of town. When I returned home, I went to extraordinary lengths to keep from having the ending spoiled for me. Until I finished reading the book, I was in lock-down mode: no television, no internet, no radio, no newspapers, and no leaving the house. How much do I love Harry Potter? Let me count the ways. There is so much to love on so many different levels.
First, there’s the misconception that these books are for children. On the surface, they may look that way, but inside, oh no. Inside, there are symbolic references to mythology, theology, sociology, legends and folklore. J.K. Rowling is a genius—she has created an amazing wizard world and made it so believable, you’re sucked right in. True, her characters are children experiencing the angst and joy of going to school, dealing with peers and adolescent awkwardness. And if that isn’t enough, Harry, Ron, and Hermione bravely battle a force so powerful and evil, no one dares utter the villain’s name. Readers of all ages can identify with their fear, their bravery and their very human emotions. Rowling suspends the reader’s disbelief so well, everything that happens appears normal and not at all out of the ordinary. Genius, pure and simple. Or maybe it’s magic.
Second, as a writer, the Harry Potter books are excellent examples of storytelling at its finest. Rowling is a master craftsman. She paints exquisitely detailed word pictures without being long-winded. She has goal, motivation and conflict down to a fine science. She knows how to torture her characters, as well as her readers. She isn’t afraid to make Harry face his worst fears or back him into tight, impossible corners. Rowling expertly weaves her tales, taking the reader on a roller coaster ride again and again. Her black moments are blacker than black. Hopeless and desperate can’t begin to describe the insurmountable trials confronting Harry.
And just when you think all is lost, and you can’t turn the pages fast enough, Rowling finally, finally gives you an imminently satisfying ending to every one of her books.
Lastly, and this is just my opinion, the Harry Potter books have to be some of the greatest love stories ever told. Love between friends, love of family, as well as romantic love--all are celebrated and honored. Good triumphs over evil, not only because justice must prevail, but because love truly conquers all in the wizard world J.K. Rowling has so lovingly created. She doesn’t let her readers down, because she knows we’re all wild about Harry.
Happy Writing!!! Anne Marie ☺