A New Generation of Wizards
by Hana Tatsutani on Friday, November 6th, 2015
From time to time, as I’m running late to school, I imagine how magical it would be to soar above the traffic on a Firebolt, swinging by Ollivanders to pick up my wand as opposed to Staples to pick up my three-ring binder. It’s safe to say that most kids in this day and age were raised in the magical world of Harry Potter.
When J.K. Rowling released her first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone in June of 1997, the book became hugely popular and quickly established an enormous fan base. The rest of the series did not disappoint, and now, over 18 years later, the seven-book series has sold over 500 million copies, making it the bestselling book series of all time.
The final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, was published in 2007; since then the series has hardly disappeared. Apart from the eight movies made based on the books, Rowling has written three shorter companion novels, established a website for fans called “Pottermore,” is set to release a play, The Cursed Child, chronicling the Hogwarts experience of Harry’s youngest son, and, most recently, has taken to Twitter to divulge new information about the beloved Harry Potter Characters.
This summer, Pottermore, J.K. Rowling’s site for all things Harry Potter, underwent a huge change releasing detailed character histories and tying up some loose ends from the original series. In addition to her website, Rowling has used Twitter as a platform for newer installments. Recently, she live tweeted Harry’s eldest son, James’, first day at Hogwarts, reminding fans to wish him luck and updating them as he was sorted into Gryffindor.
Controversy has surrounded the recent release of information about the characters and world of Harry Potter. While many fans love learning more about the fictional world, others argue that Rowling’s additions to the iconic series tarnish the integrity of the original text.
Chloe Lestage (II), an avid Harry Potter fan, had a short internship at Pottermore’s headquarters in London this past summer, observing and helping out as Pottermore prepared to launch their new site. In regards to J.K. Rowling’s reveal of character secrets, Chloe explains, “I’m a huge fan, so I just eat up this extra stuff to read because I wish the series wasn’t over! I, among others, was so devastated when I finished the last book and now I have real, truthful, from-the-author pieces that just take me right back into the story I love so much and can’t get enough of! I want more!”
Zoe Camaya (III) also views the recent installments in a positive light. She admits, “I actually really love when new information is revealed. I no longer look at the series as something that’s finite and finished. There will always be new things to reveal and new stories to explore and new information keeps the story alive.”
On the contrary, Olivia Risoleo (III) is less enthusiastic about the new information. She explains, “All in all, I am not mad that she gave new information, but I am not happy about it either. I think some of the new information is irrelevant, some of it is interesting, and some of it ruins my ideas about the series.”
Whether or not you agree with J.K. Rowling’s decision to keep adding to her iconic series, it is hard to deny how effectively she has kept the story relevant and her fans interested. With a recently revamped Pottermore and new play about to debut, it doesn’t look like the Harry Potter series will be leaving us any time soon.
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