Monday, March 25, 2013

Harry Potter Series - J.K. Rowling

 I'm a little worried I may lose friends over this.  (Mindy, don't hate me!)

You know those books that you should have read?  That everyone read?  That you wanted to read, but for whatever reason, it just didn't happen?  The Harry Potter series was that for me.  It came out while I was just finishing high school, was going strong while I was in the throes of college English classes, and the series finished when I was pregnant with my first, in my second year of teaching, and was finishing my masters degree--yes, I was a bit psychotic to take all that on.  And then baby number 2 came along.  And then baby number 3.  While pregnant with number 3 I decided I really needed to read the Harry Potter series.  It was, after all, the entire reason my youngest sibling, despite my mother's amazing strivings to create readers of all four of her children, became a reader.  He read the books like a true fanboy.  I have always felt that any childrens book that can create readers of the most struggling reading students is something of value.

And here's where I fear I'll lose friends.  It was ok.  I liked certain books better than others.  My favorite books were #1, #3 (by far my favorite) and #7.  Books 4-6 made me want to throw the books against the walls at times--where was her editor?!  Seriously, cut out some of the blatherings and reminders of previous book events and get to the point!  Overall, I did get sucked into the world of Harry Potter.  I enjoyed the magic, the culture, the creativity of the other-worldly aspect.  And I grew to love the characters.  I believe Hermoine is one of the BEST female characters for any girl to look up to: smart, solid morals, determined, and loyal. 

I'm afraid some of the controversy that others felt while reading was lost on me because I read it so long after the fact.  I already knew about certain deaths because it had been so widely talked about.  I already knew which characters were innately good or bad, therefore not allowing the shock and surprise that most experienced from reading as the books came out. 

Am I glad I read the books?  Yes.  Am I a die-hard Harry Potter fan?  Not really.  Would I recommend the books to others?  Yes.  But, no, I won't try those crazy jelly beans that taste like horrible things.  I think some things you just have to jump on the bandwagon as they're going.  I'm afraid I missed out on a wild ride by reading the books so late. 

Rating: It ranges from 3-5 stars for me depending on the book.

Sum it up:  A fun ride, a fantastic story, and overall has great messages.


brokenteepee said...

I read them a bit late but before the final book came out. I read them in one fell swoop in advance of its release. For a similar reason - they got my nephew to read. I wanted to know what got that boy into a book. I enjoyed them but I will be forever grateful to her for what she did for all of those children who DIDN'T read before and now do. That is far more powerful than any one book or series of books.

Anonymous said...

It's okay. I would have felt the same way, if I read them without the suspense.. but I did read them with suspense, so I was sobbing over Dumbledore and eating those jelly beans. [they are actually really good, especially the cinnamon ones]

Unknown said...

Let me just say THANK YOU! I'm glad I'm not the only one who feels this way. I wasn't sure if I was missing something, or if there was something wrong with me, but I just didn't fall into the obsessive about this series category.

MindySue said...

Kari, I'm not sure that we can be friends anymore!!! ;) I'm such a die-hard that it was hard for me to be objective in any of my fact I wasn't, and said as much. I read the first three books in ECUADOR. The fourth came out while I was still down there and someone got a hold of it. I had to barter with the owner so I could jump the enormous line of people trying to borrow it from her and get to read it after her. The price? And entire costco-sized jumbo bag of chocolate chips. My non-reader husband loves them too (once I got him hooked). Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is the ONLY thing that has ever waited in line for at midnight. And he waited with a bunch of people dressed up like wizards. If you know him, you'll know what a huge sacrifice that was...and that it is a testament to his love for the series. So obviously, we're huge Potterheads at our house, but it's okay if you don't feel the same. Some people just have better taste than others ;)

Unknown said...

I liked the first and the third best too...though I DO have a fondness for Viktor Krum


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