Harry Potter Books have turned 20…And…what a fabulous journey it’s been! It seems like yesterday that I picked up Philosphers Stone, .the first Harry Potter book. I was a young mother then and I got hooked on to a children’s book…and that also a fantasy full of magic , a far from reality book. . Adults know better than that ….there is no magic out there…and so did I. And then came Hogwarts, Harry Potter, Hermoine Granger, Hagrid, Voldermont, Ron Weasley, Dumbledore, Doby: the elf, Draco Malfoy,, Sirius Black and Snape in my life. My children were barely three and four or even younger , when the Harry Potter bug caught me. And it caught be bad ….I started reading the series and kept waiting impatiently for the next book to come out ….not once leaving the make believe magical world that Rowling had built so masterfully. I loved them so much that I wanted my kids to be a part of that magic. I would read a section of the book everyday and wait for the night to fall to tell that story to my children everyday …spinning a web of Rowling Magical words on their little brains. And how my kids who could not read on their own then loved the stories …almost worshipped the words that came out of my mouth. Rowling kept writing, I kept reading and I kept telling her stories. From the Philosopher’s Stone( 2001)to the Chamber of Secrets (2002),the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004), the Goblet of Fire (2005), the Order of the Phoenix (2007), the Half-Blood Prince (2009), the Deathly Hallows, pt 1 (2010)to the Deathly Hallows, pt 2 (2011).
I happily gave myself some credit too along with Rowling of being a master story teller. My kids kept wanting more …and more …the invisibility cloak , Tri Wizard competition, the dementers, Hagrid’s dragon, Hedwig, the magical spells …..I tried my best to make them imagine the magic in my stories. Stories that they could clearly see in their heads ….words which had the power to touch hearts and take us in the alternate reality of Wizards and Witches. I remember them forever wanting to cross over from being muggles to become a wizard and a witch playing quiddich in Hogwarts. How they wished they were Gryffindors working hard to win against the Slytherins.How my daughter enjoyed hearing the tales of Hermoine being smarter than a lot of boys in her class….and how Hermoine remained a favourite and an awesome role model for so many girls out there. How my son wished he had a scar like Harry’s and how he practiced in his limited vocabulary …the most famous magic spells from the books …..Wingardium Leviosa – spell that made things levitate, or Ridikullum – spell that turned scary things into something funny.
Then came the first movie ..and the second and then the next. Our family rushed to the cinemas to see the magic on the screen with all eight Harry Potter movies over the years. My kids started reading on their own after the third book. But we kept the family discussions on and kept discussing the magical spells for a long time.
What fun times were those …to have a book series and movies in which the protagonists grew up side by side …with our children every year. How beautifully Rowling kept including the milestones , the issues and hassles and pleasures of being a kid , a preteen , a teenager , an adult. How a whole generation grew up along with the main characters in the book over the years with same insecurities , hopes for future , going through the same trials and tribulations. Amazing how it had never occurred to another author before Rowling to do this ….There was never before , available a book series that became a whole world in its own. From books , to movies, to Harry Potter world, merchandise of every kind…etc etc …Harry Potter Brand has an empire of its own , a cult following , magic that never fades and a common thread that brings the readers of Harry Potter series and fans of its movies together. People who feel that they are better than the have nots …..meaning people who haven’t heard or read or seen a Harry Potter book or movie in their life…..and sadly haven’t had either the opportunity or the inclination to have their lives being touched by the Magic of Rowling’s World.
An unknown single mother …almost broke … got an idea to write a story on a train …she penned down her ideas in a small Cafe in Edinburgh ….spun magic on random pieces of napkins.. And ….went on to become a legend….and helped build an alternate world full of magic. A world that has been enchanting young and old alike for the last twenty years. A world which is a safe haven for young and not so young kids and also for their parents . It’s really inspiring to see that Harry Potter and Rowling are what they are today in spite of the circumstances …circumstances which were hardly congenial to writing a master piece, a game changer, making history or becoming a unparalleled success story.
This post is my tribute to the Series which will remain an important part of children books history forever. Harry Potter books have touched millions of lives and have imparted many life lessons on the way. The books opened my eyes to the realisation that words are powerful …more powerful than anything else in the world. And if our words can touch hearts…can impact lives …we should write. Even if only a few people read …..we should write if we can. And encourage all our children to write …good or bad doesn’t matter, but write and express as often as they can on paper, tablet or on their darling computers. Thanks to Harry Potter series and Rowling, I got inspired to write , have some good writings to my credit and the confidence that by writing I am using my time well. Hoping my writings have the ability to touch hearts at least a few of them if not more.Cheers to the amazing power of written words that brings Magic in our lives everyday!
Some life lessons from Harry Potter Books for our Kids and Us:
“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”-Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
-“The truth.” Dumbledore sighed. “It is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution.”-Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
“It’s our choices Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”-Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
“Because that’s what Hermione does,” said Ron, shrugging. “When in doubt, go to the library.”-Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
“But you know, happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” Harry Potter And The Prisoner of Azkaban