I own a fair amount of books. To say that it’s a fair amount is really downplaying it. So I own a lot of books and a lot of them I haven’t even read yet (looks guiltily at my A Song of Ice and Fire series) and I still have a lot of books that I want to own and read. I even have a list. That’s how serious I am about books, I make a list.
I recently purchased a Harry Potter book set. I’ve always wanted one but couldn’t afford it. So when I finally got it, it’s like heaven you know. I look at my precious Harry Potter books like how a mother looks at her newborn baby. I am not exaggerating. My love for Harry Potter is serious.
I was 11 when I first heard of Harry Potter. A friend of mine belongs to this religion (or cult) that bans them from reading Harry Potter. So, naturally, as I am blasphemous, I decided to look for this Harry Potter and read it. When I managed to borrow a copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone it took me a while to actually read the thing. Maybe I was in the middle of reading something else, I don’t know, but I remember being pressured to reading it in a day because another kid wanted to borrow it. And actually, a day was enough to read the thing and after reading it, I’ve decided to learn everything I can about Harry Potter and it’s creator J.K.Rowling.
My dad used to bring old copies of The Sun (a UK news paper) – which I remember having a portion for the “Position of the Month” (that particular copy had the step by step of “The Helicopter”) which scarred me as a child because it had real people doing the positions! Can someone verify the accuracy of this? This may just be a fever dream. Anyway, The Sun wrote a special on J.K. Rowling, how she came up with the idea of Harry Potter and Hogwarts. From then on J.K. Rowling became my personal hero and so did Harry Potter.
I grew up reading and eventually loving Harry Potter: When Harry felt miserable living with the Dursley’s, I also felt miserable. When Harry and Ron were pissed at Lockhart, I was pissed off at Lockhart. When Harry met Sirius but had to be separated, I cried my eyes out. When Harry was trying to get that golden egg from the Hungarian Horntail, I shouted Accio with him. I was obsessed.
4 books in and then the first movie was released. The entire cast was exactly how I imagined they’d all look like. I made it a point not to research on the actors to preserve their identities as nothing but Professor McGonagall or Snape etc. Every time a Harry Potter movie would come out, I would re-read the book before actually seeing the movie, thinking that I would find some fault in the movie because the book is just that precious to me, but I always leave the theater thinking that “they nailed it!”.
I was in college when the 4th Harry Potter movie (Goblet of Fire) came out. I spent the entire week blowing all my classes, buying myself a cheese and bacon mushroom melt and large ice tea and watch the movie over and over. And back then there was no “one time viewing rule” in the theater. As long as you don’t leave the theater you can watch the movie on loop. I ended up watching Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire 28 times, that week alone, at least 4 times everyday.
As the kids from the cast get older, I thought, “Man, Harry Potter won’t be the same anymore” but I was wrong because as Harry get older, J.K Rowling also changed her narrative. By the time Order of Phoenix came out, you know this is no children’s book anymore. So I found myself, just falling harder and deeper in love with this fictional character.
When I first started reading Harry Potter, I was also reading Sweet Valley High series, The Babysitter’s club series, Goosebumps, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Lord of the Rings and a lot more. I’ve since abandoned most of those books, but I still find myself going back to Harry Potter (and Lord of the Rings!).
I realized that people have different reactions towards Harry Potter that depends on when they were introduced to the books. I was fortunate enough to be at a similar age as Harry when the first book came out so to me, I was the embodiment of Harry Potter. A sad lonely kid who grew up with no parents (I’m not an orphan, just immigrant parents), got bullied a lot (I was the youngest in a house full of kids) and we both have poor vision.
Now that the books and the movies are over, my love for all things Harry Potter is still very much alive. J.K. Rowling is still and will always be (one of) my favorite author. I don’t even know why I’m saying this, this is such a bland post. Maybe I just want to remember how reading the books, even if it’s for like the 3rd time still gives me the thrill. And I hope that someday, when I re-read them all over again, I’ll still feel the same.