Tag Archives: jk rowling

Inside Google Books: Pottermore and Google team up to enable Harry

Wednesday, July 20, 2011
6:00 AM

(Cross-posted on the Google Commerce blog)

When JK Rowling’s new website Pottermore opens its doors this Fall, we’ll provide services to help fans make the most of their ebook purchasing experience.

Pottermore and Google are teaming up to integrate Pottermore with a number of Google products and APIs. So when the series of Harry Potter ebooks launches on Pottermore.com in early October, these bestsellers will be available in the U.S. via the open Google eBooks platform. When you buy a Harry Potter ebook from Pottermore, you will be able to choose to keep it in your Google Books library in-the-cloud, as well as on other e-reading platforms.

Google eBooks can be read on most devices with a modern browser, through the Google Books apps for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, and on more than 80 ereaders.

Pottermore will be the exclusive place to buy Harry Potter ebooks and digital audiobooks. You’ll be able to buy ebooks from the Pottermore Shop, push them to your Google Books library and store them alongside your other Google eBooks. Your other Google eBooks may be purchased from any of more than 250 independent booksellers or from Google directly.

Also under this agreement, Google Checkout will be the preferred third party payment platform for all purchases made on Pottermore.com. When you visit the Pottermore Shop, you’ll be able to pay for your purchases using Google Checkout, in addition to using a debit or credit card.

The Pottermore team also plans to use YouTube for global video broadcasts in the future, as they did for JK Rowling’s announcement of Pottermore in June.

Stay tuned for more Pottermore and Google wizardry on the web this summer, leading up to when Pottermore opens.

SSRPG: 100 Drabbles for the (mis)Adventures of Carter's Cooties – Sa13+

SSRPG: 100 Drabbles for the (mis)Adventures of Carter's Cooties – Sa13+
Disclaimer: The Harry Potter characters and universe belonging to JK Rowling. I'm not cool enough to make up such things. Also, the concept of cooties (and the idea of Carter having them) is also not mine. In case someone thought I was cool enough to
Read more on SnitchSeeker.com

Latest Harry Potter Quiz News

Finding the right balance between work and leisure
But most of all, as I look at my planner this semester, I am primarily concerned about one thing: when will I finally get to watch the final Harry Potter movie? This is unequivocally the biggest regret I have from this past summer: never watching the
Read more on Johns Hopkins News-Letter

Meet an Author: sarahb
I think reading Harry Potter got me more into branching out on reading. Before reading Harry Potter, I don't remember reading a lot of non-school required books. HP was such an amazing series I decided maybe I could find some more like it.
Read more on SnitchSeeker.com

Pottermore: Sorting hat leaves fans lost
Pottermore—for those of you still waiting on an owl—is a new website created by JK Rowling to help expand the universe of Harry Potter. This past summer, excited fans had the chance to earn a preliminary spot in the soon to be public community and
Read more on Acorn

How Many E-Books?

How Many E-Books?
There are also a couple of one-time events pushing on the trend: Borders closed, cutting into physical sales, and Harry Potter e-books are due to be released later this year, which everyone expects will cause a huge spike upward in those numbers.
Read more on Corante

Amazon Kindle Touch announced: a touchscreen e-reader
Mobibookz offers all of the latest top seller eBooks for free as well as offering free eBooks that are not available (like Harry Potter) on the retail eBook stores. So check out http://mobibookz.co right now for the largest selection of quality free
Read more on This Is My Next

Ayelet Waldman Against Amazon Users; To Catch a Book Thief
[Page Six and Twitter] When author JK Rowling's online Harry Potter merchandise hub Pottermore launches next month, it will be without e-book editions of the seven novels ready for download. The plan was to make digital editions of the books available
Read more on The Atlantic Wire

Latest Wizarding World Harry Potter News

Harry Potter tour hopes to cast spell on UK Muggles
Potter fans in the US have been able to visit Universal Studios' The Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park since June last year in Orlando, Florida, but the new tour offers the chance for British Muggles to take a look inside JK Rowling's world
Read more on The Guardian

Relief for fans thirsty for more Potter
“I now own all the movies, and am eagerly planning a vacation to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios in Orlando.” A quick trip to the park's website and any reader of Harry Potter would be hooked. The theme song used in every movie
Read more on Myrtle Beach Sun News

Latest Harry Potter Game News

Lev Grossman's 'The Magicians' Heads to the Small Screen
The book, described as “Harry Potter for adults,” centers around Quentin Coldwater, a young collegiate who is majoring in magical studies. Bored with his life in the mostly non-magical New York City, Quentin retreats into the world of Fillory,
Read more on BlackBook Magazine

Ghost Rider, Holmes, Total Recall to Debut Footage at SCREAM Awards
by SuperHeroHype Spike TV announced the "SCREAM Awards 2011" will bid farewell to the "Harry Potter" franchise with a special tribute, present Robert Downey Jr. with the "Hero Award" and give Nicolas Cage the "Maverick Award" during the event on
Read more on Superherohype.com

JK Rowling creates online “interactive storybook”
Pottermore is an official Harry Potter fansite created by JK. Rowling. Rowling generated all the content on the site, which is a major draw for people looking to know more about the world of Harry Potter, as the information is straight from the hand of
Read more on The Simmons Voice

Library readies for book sale

Library readies for book sale
Some noted authors in the selection include: Paula Deen cookbooks; James Patterson; Nora Roberts; Stuart Woods; Barbara Delinski; Sandra Brown; John Grisham; JK Rowling's Harry Potter books and more. To donate during the week leading up to the sale,
Read more on Richmond County Daily Journal

New Harry Potter Robe Shop Launches in Time for the Halloween Rush
More Harry Potter Halloween costume information can be found at http://harrypotter-halloween.org. Harry Potter has morphed from a bestselling book to a popular movie series, with fans and followers around the world. The Harry Potter Halloween costume
Read more on Emailwire (press release)

Rare Harry Potter Sketch by UK Illustrator Up for Auction
A sketch of Harry Potter with the mythical hippogriff Buckbeak drawn by former Harry Potter illustrator Cliff Wright will be up for auction at the end of the month, the Daily Mail reports. Mr. Wright was the illustrator of the UK Harry Potter book
Read more on The Leaky Cauldron.org

Latest Harry Potter Films News

Daniel Radcliffe talks Woman in Black, chat with JK Rowling to run over 50 minutes
Daniel Radcliffe recently chatted about his work with godson Misha Handley in the upcoming release of The Woman in Black, how he will continue to remain in touch with his Harry Potter costars Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and Tom Felton, and potential
Read more on SnitchSeeker.com

The Year's Grossest Film
I think it's much more likely that a kid will jump off his roof on a broom from seeing a movie like Harry Potter than actually try to create a human centipede. Plus, it's very hard to do. Harvey: If people are violent, they'll maybe hold their gun to
Read more on Daily Beast

'Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 2' DVD out November 11th!

'Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part 2' DVD out November 11th!
Get ready to complete your collection on November 11th — Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2 is hitting DVD and Bluray shelves that day! Star Daniel Radcliffe sat down with author JK Rowling in a Bluray extra (via MTV) to chat about the impact
Read more on Just Jared Jr.

Harry Potter: Deathly Hallows, Pottermore and saying good bye

Cast members Rupert Grint (R), Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson (L) arrive for the premiere of the film “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” in New York. PHOTO: REUTERS

Cast member Rupert Grint signs autographs as he arrives for the premiere of the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 PHOTO: REUTERSCast member Emma Watson arrives for the premiere of the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in New York. PHOTO: REUTERSCast members Rupert Grint (R), Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson (L) arrive for the premiere of the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in New York. PHOTO: REUTERSCast members (L-R) Tom Felton, Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Matthew Lewis arrive for the premiere of the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in New York July. PHOTO: REUTERSCast members (L-R) Rupert Grint, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson arrive for the premiere of the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 in New York July. PHOTO: REUTERS

Indeed, it all ends here as millions around the world unwillingly let go of a rope that for the last fourteen years has allowed us to descend– nay, apparate – into the most fantastical, timeless world ever to have been conjured (pun intended).

Last Thursday author JK Rowling joined the Harry Potter cast in Britain, fictional home of Potter’s mystical world of magic, to promote the final film in the seven-film series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two.

The cast, transformed from mousey-haired, ambrosial little children into chic, downright dapper young adults, spent hours mingling with fans as they made their way from Trafalgar Square to Leicester Square, the longest red carpet in film history.

In front of a crowd of thousands, out of them many who’d camped out on the streets of Central London days in advance of the premiere, a teary-eyed Rowling vowed to her longstanding and loyal fans that “Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home”.

“I don’t think the end of the story happens tonight, because each and every person…will carry this story with them through the rest of their lives, and it will affect what they do” added Daniel Radcliffe, the young actor who shot to fame as the films’ bespectacled protagonist.

Joining Rowling and Radcliffe was the rest of the film cast including Ralph Fiennes, Michael Gambon along with Rupert Grint and Emma Watson, the two other nodes of the book’s infamous, three-cornered axis of friendship.

Grint, the actor best known for his role as the violently red-headed Ron Weasley, in true fashion of his on-screen persona, humorously and sheepishly thanked Rowling for all that she had done “for ginger people”.

Watson appeared on-stage epitomizing a modern-day Audrey Hepburn with her long locks fashioned into a chic bob. Granted the Promethean bounty of unlimited intelligence both on-and-off screen, she described the experience as the “most amazing roller coaster ride” as she sobbed gracefully (and comfortably thanks to “precautionary waterproof mascara”).

As the film’s publicity machine continued on its week-long circuit of promotion around Europe and across the pond to the US, one thing remained strikingly apparent.

The powerful hold that the Harry Potter franchise enjoys over its scores of fans around the globe cannot be traced back to just one factor, but is instead shrouded in various layers of talent and luck.

The success of the series does not rest entirely on Rowling’s exceptional writing style. Nor is it solely attributable to some amazing directorial feat. Instead, the fictionalized world has maintained a fourteen-year monopoly on our hearts simply by providing us with the intangible tools of survival: hope, courage and friendship.

The world of Harry Potter has come to denote the safest of refuges: a world with infinite potential, strength in friendship, a realistic acceptance of the existence of evil, the means to overcome it, and, the granting of our worldly desires through clever, unimaginable means (Accio Marauder’s Map! Accio invisibility cloak! Accio butterbeer!).

Watching Deathly Hallows Part II: Before the show

Early Friday morning, twenty four hours before the official release date of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part Two, my sister and I attended the midnight pre-screening in Vancouver, BC.

Eight hours before show time I left my sister with a folding chair and blanket outside the movie theater. In her distinct, homemade Deathly Hallows white tee, pipe cleaner wand and 3D round-rimmed glasses, she could be easily spotted in the sea of Muggles.

An hour before show time, Starbucks handy to fuel our night, I joined her and hundreds of Potter loyalists who’d camped out all day in anticipation. The energy was palpable; the building saturated with a bittersweet sadness masked by excitement.

I edged around spontaneously formed card games, a large group around a portable flat-screen playing older Harry Potter films, and, yet another group, dressed in Slytherin regalia, prancing and posing, wands in hand – definitely practicing the Dark Arts. All this, a tangible and durable remnant of a world that begun materialising twenty years ago on a train from Manchester to London.

Tonight, the Potter magic was doing what it has always done best: bringing together strangers irrespective of age, sex, creed, religion and race.

Sitting in the darkened theater, I had an absurd, dramatic urge to nudge those around me and warn them to the pending, inevitable flow of my tears. ‘Please forgive me in advance,’ I wanted to say, ‘I am only turning a chapter in the book of life, saying goodbye to a chunk of my childhood’.

But no such warning was unnecessary because as soon as the Warner Brothers logo flashed across the screen (darkened from the usual promising yellow and sky blue to match the mood of both the film and the audience) sniffling signifying suppressed tears could be heard around the room like surround sound.

After ten years, eight films and twenty hours of running time, the Harry Potter franchise is nearing its end with a current cumulative global box-office gains of $6.3 billion.

And if pre-ticket sales, which brought in a staggering, unprecedented sum of $25 million is any indication of success, then the final film may just beat the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, the first film of the instalment, which set a milestone in 2001 when it grossed $974 million.

The last movie – underwhelming

The film itself, following its traditional, Shakespearean-esque story arc of many tragedies and many successes, does not disappoint but nor did it provide an immediately gratifying sense of closure.

With a running time of 131 minutes, the shortest in the franchise’s history, the film in its haste to reach a successful summation almost feels rushed, with key components, emotions and dialogue from the book ineffectively translated onto the big screen or in effect, completely missing.

What the film does accomplish successfully is the way in which it, almost poetically, ties in the knots of a season of struggle, confusion and chaos (spoilers ahead for those who have not read the book).

Director David Yates, who garnered much appreciation for the way in which he portrayed the darkened wizarding world with an adult-feel in Part One, transplants the same momentum in Part Two as the film opens to a lifeless, blackened Hogwarts guarded by soul-sucking Dementors shrouded in wisps of gloom and smoke.

This agitated sense of gloom and doom is maintained throughout the duration of the film as Harry, Ron and Hermione’s journey to seek and destroy the bits of Lord Voldemort’s soul harboured in the Horcruxes essentially turns the wizarding world into a bloodied warzone.

Perhaps, one of the most poignant and memorable aspects of the franchise has been its soundtrack. And Part Two of the Deathly Hallows is no exception.

There is something hauntingly peaceful about the way in which the ordinarily luminous and majestic castle of Hogwarts disintegrates into rubble, fire and blood to a background scored by Alexandre Desplat.

But even the eerily perfect soundtrack cannot breathe life into the battle and action sequences which are a touch underwhelming.

As Hogwarts’ students unite to fight to the death against Lord Voldemort and his army of Death Eaters, the viewer is left craving the sense of urgency, which perhaps only the book can bring.

With the exception of the occasional outburst of heroism (note the increasingly-dashing Neville Longbottom played by Matthew Lewis who undeniably injects the plot with comedic and heroic relief), moments of shock and loss (note blood-spattered walls following a snake attack on a Professor as well as the death of many young students), and bouts of euphoric relief (note Potter’s return to Hogwarts and later from “death”), the film remains fleeting (note the death of a beloved main character which is done so swiftly one is left wondering if anything happened at all).

As the film moves with rapid-fire succession, spewing action and plot at conveyor-belt like regularity, one quickly learns to find comfort in the small things. For instance, the film’s depiction of the highly emotive, rapid heartbeat-inducing montage featuring the conflicted character of Severus Snape (played by Alan Rickman) does full justice to both the book and one of its most challenging characters.

And despite the film’s many sins of omission and fleeting array of hurried emotions, if one were to seek the opinion of the vox populi the consensus would surely be that the film doesn’t completely strike out.

The final scene, which is epic both in facial expressions and physical setting, quickly shifts to an epilogue. At first, inducing a fit of laughter (the original cast is depicted as pot-bellied and middle-aged) the epilogue quickly turns into a nice summation, which in a fell swoop gathers up and closes the story of “the boy who lived”.

 Good bye forever? Not quite

After a decade spent waiting in mystery and intrigue for the resolution of the books and then the films, the franchise shows no signs of stopping, as it shifts to a new frontier: an arcane, secretive upcoming venture by the name of Pottermore.

Like the feeling one gets from a first date Pottermore (which went live two weeks ago) comes bearing much mystery, intrigue and promises of a long and satisfying commitment with her fans.

Despite much anticipation, hype and many predictions, the site launch included just a simple and vague pre-recorded two-minute video with author Rowling.

And even though many journalists and bloggers have been speculating, the project remains shrouded in its very own invisibility cloak.

The only certainty is that Rowling, an adept storyteller and brilliant marketer of ideas, is not pulling the curtain on the Potter series.

She is simply shuffling down a broad spectrum, moving from the existing book and film franchise to a more interactive, social networking medium, forever more connecting her fans to all things magic.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

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