Harry Potter

Doesn’t everyone wish to have Hermione’s time turner?

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What we need, ” said Dumbledore slowly, and his light blue eyes moved from Harry to Hermione, “is more time.

– J. K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, page 393)

I apologize if you haven’t read this yet. This is my third Harry Potter reference, which is understandable since the series holds so much. The conversation between Dumbledore and Hermione described what occurred after Sirius was captured and held under false pretenses. Dumbledore mentioned that three turns should be enough which translated into three hours in the past. Of course, Dumbledore let the two decide what needed to be done with the transfer back into time. Those who’ve read the book remember the changes that occurred in those three hours. That’s the key word: change. What do you wish you could change if given a time turner?

So, many times we think to ourselves ‘If I only knew what I know now’ or ‘I didn’t enjoy it while it lasted.’ or ‘What was I thinking about getting the (fill in the blank)?’. However much we wish, hope, dream, pray, and think upon we can’t change what occurred in the past. We can alter certain aspects, such as manage a terrible hair cut, refinance a poor money choice, repaint the olive walls, or sell extreme purchases. There are certain things that can’t be changed, such as a heated argument created difficult relationships or reckless behavior that caused physical bodily damage. True, people grow and learn from their past and develop skills through life. Stop and think about the choices that you make right now before you regret later or wish you could change.

Now, there’s also the opposite of turning into the past. Would you use the time turner to see your future? Of course, nobody wishes to suddenly age, but perhaps just a glimpse to quickly turn forward 3 weeks, 6 months, or decades then turn back. (Exception is if you’re turning 16 to drive or 21 to legally drink.) All of us have ‘count downs’ whether it’s a movie opening, exam, presentation, interview, graduation, wedding, celebration, competition, and endless tasks and deadlines.  We cross off calendar dates, cut off Christmas paper link chains, ask others to remind us, or program reminders onto phones. I even put a Harry Potter movie countdown on my phone. Countdowns into the future create suspense, anticipation, excitement, dread, and even fear.

Unless, you have a magical time turner you don’t have the power to switch to the past and future. Enjoy the present and try not to change the past or wonder about the future. You can’t control your past, but you can prepare for your future even if you can’t see it.

Fighting a troll = lifelong friendship

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But from that moment on, Hermione Granger became their friend. There are some things you can’t share without ending up liking each other, and knocking out a twelve-foot mountain troll is one of them.

– J. K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

I like this quotation, because it marks the beginning of the strong friendship between Harry, Ron, and Hermione. Beforehand, Harry and Ron made fun of Hermione and didn’t want to associate with her, but that all changed the moment they fought the troll in the bathroom together. They could have easily gotten upset or blamed someone, but the struggle brought them together. Of course, they have no clue how challenging their struggles will be in the future.

So I ask you this, what friends have stuck by you through your difficult life situations? How far are you willing to go for your friends? What moments are so great and bold that you’re bound to become someone’s friend? Treasure those who stay near through all ups and downs.

‘The Quibbler’ excites Hermione

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Any student found in possession of the magazine The Quibbler will be expelled.

For some reason, every time Hermione caught sight of one of these signs she beamed with pleasure.

‘What exactly are you so happy about?’ Harry asked her.

‘Oh, Harry don’t you see?’ Hermione breathed. ‘If she could have done one thing to make absolutely sure that every single person in this school will read your interview, it was banning it!’

– J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, page 512)

I remembered this small conversation between Harry and Hermione from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix after yesterday’s post about censorship in The Day They Came to Arrest the Book. (Yes, I’ve read them enough times to recall certain phrases.) I don’t think this conversation spoils the book if you haven’t read it yet. The basic idea is that the magazine, The Quibbler, provided information that the ministry didn’t want students to know about. Of course, Hermione catches this action right away and understands that students will now learn the truth. By the end of the day, every student read The Quibbler.

What happens when you ban or forbid something? Of course, our curiosity wins and we desire to seek what others don’t want us to learn or comprehend. I know this sounds wrong, but perhaps the best business for an author is for their work to become challenged or banned. Think about it. Individuals crave to know what information and context is so terrible and extreme that some want to influence others from not reading it. So don’t be afraid to read that material, listen to the song, or watch the movie that others find ‘questionable’ or ‘inappropriate’ to themselves. My personal philosophy is that any book worth banning is a book worth reading.

The page number refers to the adult version. I still remember when I bought this ‘adult’ book. I was in Europe at the time when Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix released, so I somehow wanted to get my hands on it. Finally, I found the book in Amsterdam and was asked ‘Would you like the adult or children’s version?’. Well, in the United States I’ve only heard of one version and I thought to myself: ‘Hmm, what exactly makes Harry Potter ‘adult’ material?’ So of course, my curiosity won and I bought the ‘adult’ version. I learned the only difference was the font and cover, supposedly to encourage adult readers and not being caught reading Harry Potter. Personally, I think these covers appear darker as the series should be portrayed. However, as I mentioned in an earlier post, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover.

Adult Version                                                     Children’s Version

Harry Potter excitement continues!

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So, are you one of the lucky few in a million who has early access to J.K. Rowling’s newest work? You’re asking yourself: ‘I didn’t know she was writing more books.’ however that’s not true. Her new work is about Harry Potter, but with no additional books instead it’s an interactive online site: www.pottermore.com. It isn’t exactly clear what the website is all about, but Rowling states it’s an online experience surrounded around the Harry Potter books.

The countdowns for the books and movies may be over, but this is a new countdown for the website to be open in October. However, if you’re one of the lucky few (such as myself) you will be able to ‘shape the experience’ before the site opens. For seven days (seven books) starting on July 31st (Harry’s birthday), fans have the opportunity to register. It was very exciting and just like Harry Potter ‘magic’ with the whole process. You need to find a magic quill and answer questions about the book. For example, “How many types of owls are sold at the Owl Emporium? Multiple this number by 44.” Of course, I didn’t know the number but I knew where to find the information (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone when he first buys school supplies in Diagon Alley)

After this success, you’re asked numerous questions and an email is sent to confirm. You’re then declared ‘magical’ to pick a screen name from those provided. I suppose I was lucky, because I got through right away on the first day. (However, it may have been because it was just after midnight. No, I wasn’t waiting until it was posted instead just skimmed info on Facebook.) The ‘magic’ again occurs when it’s open only a certain amount of time each day before registration is closed. I actually wanted to check each day to see if I could correctly answer the next questions.

However, even though I’ve been selected as ‘magical’ I still have to patiently wait for a ‘welcome email’ that arrives within the next few weeks. The website can’t handle everyone at the same time. I think it’s worse than a book or movie opening, since I don’t know the exact date. Oh well, it’s just like waiting for an owl post.

The website, www.pottermore.com, is also a place to see the books in a digital format. Rowling stated that she wants it to be available for all regardless of which e-reader is used. If anyone can control how books are digitally formatted and distributed it’s her. Rowling has been very hesitant in the past to allow her books into digital format, but confessed that it’s here to stay. I think any reading format of Harry Potter whether audio, print, or soon to be digital is magical for everyone.

Post on website after a successful registration:

You’ve successfully validated your early access Pottermore account. You will be one of the lucky few to shape the experience before the site opens to all in October.

You may have to wait a few weeks for your Welcome email to arrive as we can’t let everyone into the Beta site at the same time.

We look forward to seeing you.