Harry Potter – My History (and a new trailer too)

What a bitter-sweet year this is with the final movie release of the final book of the Harry Potter Series.  I have watched my kids grow up around the Harry Potter books.  I have watched documentaries on J K Rowling which only increased my respect for her as a single mom writing out that first book on napkins and scratch paper in a coffee shop.  She truly is a rags to riches story and has long been one of the authors I really respect.

Harry Potter has been a part of my life since 1997.  As I look back over my collection I have to think what a win for Scholastic, winning the bid for the books in the US.  I remember that first copy coming into our home.  I remember my boys had it – I did not read (and would not read it until after I heard a  movie was coming out and wanted to see what they hype was all about – this was in 2000)

My two sons love this... I did too after I read it in 2001

And really, after that first reading for me… I was a Potter head.  I had catching up to do as of this time the fourth book in the series was coming out and they were getting BIGGER and BETTER.  The first book started over 200 pages and by the fourth they are between 500 – 700 pages. 

Brilliant.  By this time, each book that came out we had to purchase it triplicate (YAY J K!) as two teenage boys and myself…. we could not share.  We would all be in our designated corners – sworn to not tip the others off if anyone was ahead.  Of course I did mention I had two boys…. so that rule didn’t exactly stick…. groans would be heard as they tried to ruin a scene for the other, sometimes it was true… sometimes it was a fake out “Oh no!  I can not believe he died on page 527!”

Many other Potterish things are happening now as well.  We go to the midnight showings of the movies.  We have waited in lines at 12:01 on book release day to be sure we have our copies and can start reading right away.  Release dates (books and movies) are actually put on the calendar so we are sure to keep that day free and not make other commitments. 

The 1st year

Harry,Ron, Hermoine - Now

Somewhere I have pictures of the boys running around the house with blankets tied around their necks and pointing sticks at each other as they cast spells for a couple of hours one evening. 

By the time book 7 came out my oldest boy was out of the house and it was just Justin and I reading the books at home.  I had pre ordered the seventh book as we had planned to be camping release day (I know what timing right?).  I had never pre ordered one of these books before and was nervous about delivery.  When our plans changed and we stayed home that weekend I was a wreck release day… wondering if I should have hit the stores at midnight and picked up a copy, wondering if release day did not necessarily mean delivery day and knowing the whole world was already deep into their books while I in Brainerd Minnesota was waiting on my back deck for the UPS man. 

Finally by late morning as I was wondering if anyone in town had any copies left I discovered that my copy of the book was tucked into the screen door off the front door to our home.  Never mind how long it had been there…. I will never know.  :razz: 


This time, Justin who was working on release day (again…. who’s kid is this who would work on book release day?  Really….) was behind me on reading.  Yup.  So by the time he got home I was 300+ pages in and while I prepped supper (I know I know… I should have ordered in!) he started reading with my ever watchful eye waiting for his reactions….. finally he banished me from watching him read – which is cruel. 

SO….. being the great mom that I am…. the next day while he was working…. I went through his copy of the book and put post it notes on the page AFTER anything big happened.  So – when someone died, or when Mrs. Wheasley swears for the first time in any of the books, on the next page would be a post it note from me saying something like “Whoa!!!  Can you believe that just happened?”  He laughed when he found the first one…. after the second one he asked if I had done that through his entire book.  I chose not to answer.

Every time I pick up one of these books I find something more that impresses me …. things in first books come up again in later books, hints I did not pick up on the first time catch me the second time around. 

There is so much to this season that is Harry Potter.  The merchandising, the websites, Harry Potter world now in Orlando, and Reagan and I are going to the Harry Potter Exhibit while we are in New York at the end of May. SSQQUUUEEEE!!!!

What an opportunity I have had to be along from the start of this ride…. I chalk these up as future classics…. and I for one feel privileged to be among the ones who were there from Hogwarts to Hallows.

I leave you with this – the new trailer for the last of the Harry Potter movies – Deathly Hallows part II – July 15th:

About Sheila (Book Journey)

Bookaholic * Audio Book Fan *Bike Rider *Rollerblader *Adventure Seeker *Want To Be Runner*Coffee lover *Fitness Fan * Movie junkie

Posted on April 29, 2011, in Book Stuff and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 33 Comments.

  1. Love, love, love this!!! We never did stand in line on book release day but my daughter and I have read each Harry Potter book several times over.

    I wonder if I can fit them all in again before the movie release?

    Thanks for posting the trailer!

    • It kind of became a tradition at our house and I have not dine this for any other book so it was a lot of fun! :D

      I would love to read them all again before the movie but am going to try to read 6 and 7 again… the two that relay lead up this… I listened to the earlier ones last fall and winder on audio which was fantastic!

  2. What an intriguing journey you have had through the Harry Potter books.

    I still haven’t read one, but do plan to do so.

    I saw a fabulous interview with J. K. Rowling a few months ago, and I’m so impressed.

    My granddaughter is a big fan, and keeps promising to bring her copy of book one for me to read….

  3. Sheila, I totally enjoyed this post. Loved hearing about your Potter journey. Sometimes, I’ve felt like I was the only adult who was in love with the Potter books. I suspect once I have seen the new movie, I may write something like this myself. I did write about the Deathly Hallows book after I finished it in 2007 and I started my post with the words, “My Harry Potter life is now complete”. Looking back, I think it’s not quite complete yet. Maybe in July of this year? LOL

    I don’t remember if you’ve said, but have you listened to these in audio? If not, totally do it. If so, aren’t they lovely?

    • Hi Kay – I did start listening them on audio last year ad yes – LOVED that and totally recommend that.

      I think this final piece of the movie will be wonderful and heart breaking… my kids grew up with Harry, Ron, and Hermione…. honestly – I kind of grew up with them too. :)

  4. Awesome post, Sheila!! I caught up on the HP books from 2000 only, when my cousin made me read it at gunpoint (well, not really, but it was close to that). After finishing it, I gave him a BIG HUG! This is such a wonderful series, wish we had more books like this one.

    • LOL Aths – I am glad you were forced to read them! :D I miss them so much and I know that they need to be left alone and J K sadly closed the door tight to further books…. really really tight…..
      I had secretly wished she would leave it open for more if she so chose to do so…. still knowing that it is better left going out as it did…. leaving us Potter heads at the top of our game :D

  5. Great to hear your story! I was late to the party, but I agree with your conclusions.

    • Its not often we get to take part in fictional history in the making and I feel that is what I lived here Hannah…. I hope the next generations appreciate it as much.

      • I think they will, but it will, of course, also be different. The waiting, etc., will be removed. Maybe comparable to watching a TV show (LOST?) on DVD, rather than waiting every week …

        • Right – there is something about the excitement of the books coming out, the movie lines, the on line “hoopla”….. I really am so glad I was able to experience it first hand :)

          • Probably more of a shared experience, being there from the beginning, waiting while everyone else was reading, disappearing into the book on release day, avoiding spoilers …

  6. Should I be embarrassed that I teared up while reading this post? :) Between the photos of the actors growing up and the stories of your kids growing up reading the books, I couldn’t help it.

    I love the part about using the post-it notes!

    • LOL Alyce – I am so PROUD of you right now! :razz: I think it is awesome that you did because you get where I am at! I am as big a kid when it comes to these books as my own kids are…. I cant wait to go to Harry Potter world someday in Florida….. :D

      Yeah… Justin still gives me grief for the post it notes but it let me get excited with him about the book happenings…w without really stalking his every page…LOL

  7. I love these books and I love the experiences that these books create . I basically grew up with the Harry in the books. We were the same age almost all the way through. I remember starting a fan club in middle school, deciding who in our high school would be in what house, and then sitting next to my boyfriend as we raced through the last book (we had separate copies).

    You will find me at this last movie with tissues.

  8. I think that is awesome…just think about sharing it with your grandchildren someday…hee hee hee…

  9. Have you heard of The Emerald Atlas…just released? You might just love this one, too…I thought it was lovely…

  10. I never waited in line on release day, but usually picked up the book later that day when the craziness died down. My husband and I manged to share the copy we bought and I was good at not giving things away. We did the same thing with the Twilight books, although he didn’t decide to read those until the movie was coming out. Thanks for the trailer!

  11. It seems u and I discovered Harry around the same time. And the same reasons. I have waited in the lines at walmart waiting for 12:01, eager to turn the pages and divulge in Harrys land. This is my favorite series of books and has been since I started to read them. It will be bitter sweet in July when the last movie is released. I can’t wait but I know I will be sad when it is over.

    • Krystal I think they are my favorite series too… I refer to them as my comfort books. I can always find a friendly face at Hogwarts…. I love sinking back into these books and glad you do too!

  12. I have a story JUST LIKE THAT for the seventh book too! I preordered and it said it would come UPS, and that day was my son’s 5th birthday party. I kept hoping it would come in the morning, and I worried that we wouldn’t get it because sometimes our doorbell doesn’t ring properly. Kept looking out the window. By 11am it still hadn’t come so I made Jason go run down to the grocery store and buy me a copy (thankfully there were copies left), and then finally by 4pm, there was no preordered book in sight! I finally went down the block to get the regular mail…and it was sitting there in the package drop waiting for me the whole day!! Now why the heck did they tell me they were sending UPS if they were going regular mail?? Agh!! I ended up giving the second copy to my sister, who was over for Ambrose’s party anyway. :D

    That was actually the only book I ever had to wait on, since I didn’t start reading them until after the 6th book came out. I wish I’d started earlier!! And you and Reagan will have a blast at that exhibit. I got to go to it in Chicago back in 2009 when I was up at the ALA conference, and it’s awesome! Try to be near the front and you can volunteer to be Sorted by the hat!!

    • That is so funny you did the mail thing too…LOL :D I am surprised you did not start them before the 6th!

      OHHHHH!!!! Thanks for the tip about the sorting hat! (It is it a little embarrassing that I just got excited about that?)

  13. I’m such a huge Harry Potter fan! I cannot wait until my oldest is ready to read the books together…I’m really looking forward to it. And I am so looking forward to the last movie. I’ll be sad when it is done though but what amazing books and movies these are!

  14. I am thoroughly obsessed with Harry AND JK Rowling. I have watched the movies AND the documentary “A Year in the Life of J.K Rowling” and embarrassing amount of times!!! So I completely understand!

    I too came to the books late, it was around 2001, so I totally hear you on that one too… my daughter is now 11 and by the time she as 3 she was watching the first 2 movies. We went to one of the midnight book launches her in her costume, it was so fun. I feel so sad about the next movie being the last and nary another Potter book in the offing. :0(

    Have you been to Harry Potter World in Orlando yet? I actually cried when I saw the gate to Hogwarts, how geeky is that??!!! CRIED I TELL YOU!

    ANYway, it is very cool, but so so unbelievably crowded I can’t even tell you. I mean I cannot in any way overemphasize how extremely crowded it is. Did I mention it was crowded??? If I had known, I would have waited another couple of years to hopefully wait out the wall to wall people in every corner of the place.

    I am re-reading the first one and like you I am finding just such beauty in her writing, even in the opening page how she describes the Dursley’s…so clever!

    Sorry for the long post, but you got me very excited!!

    • I cant wait to go to Orlando and I bet I would cry too….LOL

      I heard they are going to make it bigger… they were not anticipating the interest (uhhh….duh!)

      No problem with the long post…. I understand :razz:

  15. Wonderful post – I too have been totally wrapped in the world of Harry Potter. After reading the final book, I felt that it still hadn’t ended until the last film had been released. (I know that’s strange).. so it’s only now that it feels like this is ‘the end’ of an era.

    • I hated how she closed it up tight so we could not dream of a future book….. of course, now I know it had to end that way…. why ruin a good thing…. it ended on a high note and as sad as it is to be done…. I am glad it wasnt over done :)

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