Saturday, July 21, 2007


Updated 7/22/07

It is no secret that I spend a lot of time on Friday nights at BigBoxOfBooks, but anyone that has not been hiding from spoilers in a cave knows that last night was PotterMania. I read the first book to see what the big deal was, but decided I didn't need to read the same book six more times.

My son literally grew up with Harry Potter. The first book came out when he was in third grade, and now they are both seventeen. He has been a bit blase about the hype, but he did wake up early to get in line. For a kid that rarely sees the front side of noon in the morning, he got up and was third in line at 7:50 for the color coded wrist bands that put him in the first group for the book.

The scene at the local BBoB was probably the same as everywhere. For the past couple of years, we have been buying at OtherBigBoxOfBooks, but they make you stand outside. BBoB stayed open for the duration of the event so we could even fortify ourselves with overpriced highly-caffeinated milkshakes. There were plenty of kids, adults, and families dressed in Potterwear. The store had a costume contest and held a drawing for the privilege of buying the first one.

He may not be crazy about Harry Potter, but plenty of his friends are. One of his teammates on the It's Academic Team screamed when she got beat at the buzzer on a Harry Potter toss-up questions. They all met up to stand in line together, just to keep the party atmosphere going.

We got our book about 12:30 and headed home. Just to satisfy our curiousity, he went and read the last line out loud. In the eight years since these books have become a phenomenon, my son has grown and moved on. While his friends were determined to stay up all night and read it right away, my son went to bed soon after getting home. He thinks he might get around to reading it on Sunday. He has a hundred and fifty pages left in the fourth Robert Jordan Wheel of Time book to finish first.

BlatantCommentWhoring™: Do you have PotterFever?

Update (7/22/07): At midnight last night we lost power to our house. My son found a headband flashlight and went to his room. At 9 am he came downstairs, dropped Deathly Hallows on the kitchen table and announced "Finished!" I quizzed him for spoilers and he went and put it on the shelf with the earlier six volumes.


Mooselet said...

PotterFever? No, more like PotterSlightlyWarm.

I did pick up my pre-ordered copy yesterday about 90 minutes after they went on sale here, passed many people plunked down in various cafes reading the book, and I've read nearly 200 pages so far. I won't skip to the end, although my own son did, and I have my own thoughts on who'll die but I just can't stay up all night and read. Hopefully I can finish it in the next couple of days and see how satisfied I am.

HRH Courtney, Queen of Everything said...

Full on Potter fever. Finished the book at 11:06 Saturday, and that included a break to get a pedicure and some dinner, and a break after chapter 34 where I felt I might not be able to continue due to sobbing. However, it was thrilling, and I loved it.

Thumper said...

Not Potter Fever; I didn't pre-order and didn't go to a Potter party at the bookstore...I just went out yesterday morning and bought the book, then spent the day reading it.

It's not great literature, but there's a sheer joy in reading the series...I think I kinda envy JK Rowling's ability to weave it all together. And her paycheck. Definitely her paycheck.

Impetua said...

I got up at 7ish on Saturday morning, went to a local store and picked up my copy, and was finished with it at one minute to midnight. If I had been one of the age group it was aimed at when it came out, I would have been at the party Friday night, but without some grade-schoolers to accompany me I would have felt out of place. I am after all nearly 40. I have SOME dignity.

It's great stuff, very absorbing, and I was so curious about how it would end. I had my theory about Snape and it turned out to be true!

Malnurtured Snay said...

"Didn't need to read the same book six more times."

While it's true that the first six books have roughly the same formula -- Dursleys, Doing Stuff Before Hogwarts, Hogwarts, Resolution -- the idea that they're all the "same" is patently ridiculious. I commend you for considering reading the seventh book, but without reading the five in between, what'd be the point? Pick up "Chamber of Secrets", and if you can get through that and "Prisoner of Azkaban" without desiring to read further on, at least you'll have tried.

I'm a devoted reader of fiction. Devourer, more like it. I'm also an ex-English major. And as a very well read individual, I assure you that the Harry Potter series is some of the best ADULT literature I've ever read. You'd like it a lot, if you could find it within yourself to keep going!