Tag Archives: reading

Why Should You See Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince After Reading The Book?

Article by Allan Michael Taylor

The magic world of Harry Potter engulfed with witches, wizards and spells has rocked the world since its first release in 1998. Since then the novels and the movies have been massive success. Harry Potter has seven series and each book has its own attraction as the writer J.K Rowling takes you on an adventurous ride to the wizard world.

The basic plot or theme behind the books is the audacious years of Harry Potter at Hogwarts. Hogwarts is a unique magical school for wizards and witches. When Harry is thirteen he comes across the reality that he is a wizard and is required to commence his education at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Through all these years, Harry goes through different trials and tests set by his enemies and work his way out by the help of his true friends. Professor Dumbledore acts as his custodian and is also the headmaster of the school. Lord Voldemort, the baddie of the tale who also killed Harry’s parents leaving him orphaned, mostly sets the trials. The sixth part of the Harry Potter series Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince revolves around many mysteries.

First of all the key charismatic feature is the book, which Harry finds in an old cupboard. The book makes him a renowned student in the potions class but with the passage of time, Harry gets to know bout the prior owner of the book. To watch the exhilarating and exciting scenes unroll you have to watch the picture.

Then the most capturing parts of the movie, which you must be greatly waiting for, are the sessions which Harry takes at professor Dumbledore’s office. In these sessions the professor takes Harry on a visit to his different memories of the past. The swirling smoke of the memories that suck you inside to view them is a capturing scene. Moreover, the sudden thrills that the scenes involve are must to watch.

While touring these memories, many exciting scenes will keep you glued to the movie like the visit to Marvolo Gaunt’s house. Marvolo Gaunt is the grandfather of Lord Voldemort and while studying the history of his villain Harry comes across his dark past and the truth of his dark existence.

The romantic flicks between Ron and Hermione and Harry and Ginny are essential to watch. Although the feelings, emotions of covetousness, and love expressed in the book cannot be so noticeably explained in the movie, but still the director has done a big job in creating the right level of chemistry between the lovebirds.

The other moving features of the movie include the excitement of the Quidditch matches, the wizard game. Although the book does a good job of explanation but still the allure is exhilarated more when action is seen in animated form. The novels are full of suspense and thrill especially the last scenes that include the fighting sessions. To enjoy the saga in animation, it is essential to watch the movie.

Book tickets for Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince at your local cinema now!










Teen: Reading classic books is cool, not boring

Teen: Reading classic books is cool, not boring
Is it the latest YA novel? Are you rereading the Harry Potter series? Are you catching up on the "Hunger Games" trilogy? Maybe a book caught your eye on a library shelf and it's proving to be a bit more interesting than you expected.
Read more on San Jose Mercury News

The Writing Tutor Promotes Reading with Online Literature Circles; Newest Discussion Topic is Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling

Deerfield, IL (PRWEB) July 19, 2005

The release of the most recent book in the Harry Potter series is the perfect opportunity for educators to push reading since so many children (and adults) love the series. To encourage reading and literary discussion, The Readers’ Corner Book Club has posted the question: “What did you think of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince?” For a little added fun, The Writing Tutor has also included a survey asking people how quickly they read the book.

The Readers’ Corner Book Club is a relatively new addition to The Writing Tutor. It presents readers with the opportunity to share their own reading experiences and to see what other people are reading. Readers can participate in several different ways. “Literature Circles” provides an ongoing discussion about books of interest to “Literature Circles” readers. Books will be selected based on reader suggestions and will usually represent a variety of genre and reading levels. “Readers’ Suggestions” is a list of suggestions provided by students, parents, teachers, and other life-long learners. If you really liked a book, let other readers know about it! Even if your favorite is already on our list, tell us what YOU liked about it and why others should read it. Visit The Readers’ Corner Book Club at http://www.thewritingtutor.biz/suggested_reading/readerscorner.php.

The Writing Tutor also promotes reading with a section called Suggested Reading Lists. The section includes lists of classic and contemporary literature, Advanced Placement reading lists, lists of helpful reference books, self-help books about writing, grammar, and vocabulary, and finally, a list of standardized test preparation materials. The section also includes a list of The Writing Tutor’s favorites. Visit the Suggested Reading section at http://www.thewritingtutor.biz/suggested_reading.

For additional information, please contact Michele R. Acosta or visit http://www.TheWritingTutor.biz.

About The Writing Tutor’s founder:

Michele R. Acosta has an M.A. in education, a B.A. in communication/journalism, and the equivalent of an undergraduate major in English. She is certified by the State of Illinois to teach high school English and middle school language arts, has an endorsement in journalism, has taught and advised high school student publications, and has taught ACT preparation classes in addition to teaching high school English. The instructor is registered as a tutor with Deerfield Public School District 109 and with Township High School District 113. (Both districts are located in the State of Illinois.)

Acosta’s primary areas of expertise include teaching writing skills and the writing process to a wide range of ability/skill levels, ranging from a “back to basics” review to the refinement of Advanced Placement (AP) English level writing skills.

Additional areas of expertise include teaching self-editing skills and reading strategies, as well as developing the ability to think and write about literature or content in other humanities-based disciplines.

In addition to tutoring students and writing curriculum for enrichment and remediation classes, the instructor has also taught a yearbook enrichment class to 5th graders at Walden Elementary School in Deerfield, Illinois. The enrichment program is sponsored and organized by the Walden PTO.

The instructor is a Deerfield resident, has children enrolled in Deerfield Public School District 109, and has lived in the Deerfield vicinity for most of her life.

Contact Information:

Michele R. Acosta

The Writing Tutor

The Writing Tutor complies with The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).

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Related Harry Potter And Half Blood Prince Press Releases

David Farland Predicts That the Release of the iPad 3 in 2012 Will Spell the End of Reading as We Know it Within 3 Years


St. George, UT (PRWEB) November 25, 2011

In the last quarter of 2012, Apple will release the iPad 3, though the name is not certain for it, it will allow projection in 3D. Meanwhile, Vuzix Corporation already markets 3D virtual reality goggles that look like sunglasses with high quality earphones, now used for games. The glasses user sees the world as though they are looking out dark sunglasses with a six-foot TV screen superimposed on them that appears to be nine-feet away. There’s no reason this technology can’t be used with the iPad as well.

David Farland, co-founder of East India Publishing, established their company on the vision of what enhanced novels will be like in the near future.

Imagine that a person put on their ?reading glasses.? The glasses are dark, fitted with lasers and high-quality stereo earbuds, so that as they are put on, the entire field of vision is captured. A laser inside the glasses flashes a novel title on the interior surface of the eye.

The letters start small, off in the distance and they quickly draw closer to the viewer, but they don’t stop, they wash right over the beholder and just when it seems they’re all around, they explode in a burst of light, ?Nightingale, by David Farland.? A person can hardly imagine what life was like before 3D. As soon as they read the last word, a laser with a computer link that tracks eye movement cues the background music, and images begin to flash upon the screen?a short video-clip of the character of Bron, as an infant, being abandoned outside the door of a cheap hotel in the Utah desert. The camera pans up to the face of his mother, Sommer, bitter and broken, with tears in her eyes. We flash to the prologue, where Sommer runs through a forest at night, her breathing deep, while dogs snarl and bark as they give pursuit. Fireflies rise up around her.

Words to the novel appear on screen, as background music continues, and the viewer begins to read. As Sommer twists her foot and falls, the lasers pace the reading and insert a sound-effect?the thud of a body falling, the hiss of breath knocked from Sommer?s throat. The dogs bay more excitedly. A man?s heavy footsteps can be heard tromping through the brush behind the reader, and a startled mewling cry escapes Sommer?s throat. . . .

Welcome to the future of reading, where text and images and sounds come in a collage. That?s the vision that David Farland, bestselling author and co-founder of East India Press, has for the future.

?The technology to do this already exists,? David points out. ?The use of heads-up displays in fighter jets was pioneered in the 1960s, and that technology is going public. Though readers now are using the iPad2 and the Kindle Fire, I?m looking forward to the devices we?ll have five years from now, or ten years.?

How can reading technology be better than with current books?

?We don?t want to replace reading,? Farland contends. ?We don?t want to make movies. Reading often engages the audience?s imagination in ways that movies fail to. We want to keep it that way. We want the reader to be a partner with us in bringing a tale to life. At the same time, we hope to ?enhance,? the story, help readers become more fully involved with it, yet keep budgets to a reasonable price. With film clips, animations, illustrations, background music, and sound effects, we can create something that fuses a lot of storytelling tools.?

Creating e-books has become cheap and easy, he points out. This year, it is estimated that three million people will be putting their own e-books up for sale. That?s a staggering number. ?If you spend twelve hours a day just examining those titles, and spend only ten seconds studying each e-book put up this year, you wouldn?t be able to glance at even 1/100th of all the books that will be published?much less read one!? Farland points out.

Readers are being deluged, often with books that aren?t any good. ?Most of those books, unfortunately,? Farland points out, ?wouldn?t have made it past an editor. The author just wasn?t ready. Sure, there will be a few diamonds among all of that coal, but no editor will have time to sort through it.?

Farland knows about sorting through manuscripts. For nearly a decade he was the first judge for one of the world?s largest writing contests. He was once asked by a major publisher to help pick a book to give the ?big publicity push to? for the next year. He surveyed their stock and selected a book that the marketers thought was ?too-long? for its intended audience. He urged them to push it despite the book?s apparent problems, even though, he pointed out, the novel was written at a grade-level too high for its intended audience. The novel? It was called Harry Potter.

?Even though authors can publish their own works,? Farland points out, ?we?re going to need editors in the future who understand how to green-light a novel, who can recognize what will please an audience. But once a work is selected, the editor will take the role of a producer?assembling a creative team of composers, musicians, illustrators, animators, directors, sound-effects engineers, and so on.?

Distributing enhanced books won?t be expensive. After all, it will be done electronically. There are no copies to print, ship, or store. But creating them will be expensive and time-consuming.

Still, it will be a lot less expensive than making a movie. ?To create a really great movie with a lot of special effects,? Farland points out, ?can cost hundreds of millions of dollars, and it will only give the viewer an hour or two of entertainment. But by meshing technologies, we can create a similar experience with novels, spending perhaps only a hundred thousand or two?and it will give a reading experience that might last for twenty or thirty hours or more! Novels have a unique ability to let us get into deep penetration into the minds and emotions of a character, much more so than with a film. I?m excited about the possibilities.?

In fact, Farland, who is an award-winning New York Times bestseller in his own right, became so excited by that with his next novel, he decided to start his own publishing company for enhanced novels. ?I had what I considered to be the best agency in New York ask to take this novel to major publishers, but I turned them down,? Farland says. ?It?s the first young adult novel I?ve written, outside of a little work with Star Wars and the Mummy. I knew it could be a hit, but I wanted to do something . . . unique with it.? Farland, who has trained dozens of other #1 international bestsellers, people like Brandon Sanderson and Stephenie Meyer, has an uncanny ability to spot ?good.?

Now that it?s done, Farland says, ?This is a first step toward creating a more-engaging form of novel, the kind that kids who are reluctant readers might devour. I?m looking forward to see what we can do ten or twenty years from now.?

Dave?s enhanced novel tells the story of a young man, abandoned at birth, rejected from foster home after foster home. People see that he?s brilliant and talented, but also ?strange.? He?s the ultimate loner until he meets Olivia, a marvelously gifted teacher, who recognizes that Bron is something special, something that her people call a ?Nightingale,? a creature not quite human.

And how is it being received? The first reviewer said of it: ?I devoured the novel. It was absolutely incredible! . . . I struggled to explain just how much I enjoyed it in my review. . . . After reading Nightingale, I don’t think I will even be able to go back to reading regular e-books again. Like it says in my review, reading the enhanced Nightingale felt like an ?experience.? It didn’t feel quite like a book or a movie. It initiated all of my senses. . . . enhanced ebooks are actually a real deal.?

East India Press has created a new web simulation technology that mimics how the book appears on the iPad, so you can see and hear it for yourself on any web connected computer at http://www.nightingalenovel.com.

David Farland is a New York Times Bestselling author of over fifty novels, a former writing professor, has worked as a top game designer and movie producer. He has his finger on the pulse of entertainment creation. He can be reached at davidfarland.com.

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How To Turn Your Children Into Reading Champions

Children who don’t like to read are at a disadvantage. Good reading habits will not only help them get better grades in school; it will help them succeed in just about any profession they choose. Besides, instilling a love of reading in them will open up a world of learning and imagination that will last their whole life. Here’s how to improve your children’s reading skills.
. Make reading fun. When your children are small, read to them before bedtime. Make it a happy time when you’re sharing books that bring joy to them. When they get bigger, encourage them to find a comfortable spot in your house where they can settle in and read for some “quiet time” each day. By doing this, your kids will associate reading with happy, peaceful times.
. Choose appropriate books. Children sometimes try to read books that are beyond their reading level, and this becomes a negative, frustrating experience. Help them to choose  books that are appropriate for their reading level and interests.
. Encourage them to follow favorite authors. This is easy to do today, since most authors have Web sites and blogs, and your child can easily find them online. By following an author this way, you can also find out when they’re doing book signings and appearances in your area, and you can take your child to one of them.
. Read their favorite books. When your child develops an interest in a certain book, read it yourself so you can talk intelligently with your child about it. Have conversations about the characters and the plot (i.e., “Who dies in the new Harry Potter book?”). This will improve your child’s reading comprehension, and will keep the book alive in their mind.
. Have a reading lesson plan. Give them reading goals. This is especially good during summer, when you can set a goal of how many books you’d like your child to read over several months. Go to the library and pick out another book as your child finishes each title on the list.
. Reward them for achievement. When your child meets a reading goal or gets a good mark in school for reading, make sure you reward that effort. By giving positive feedback and rewards, you’ll sow the seeds for a lifelong love of reading.

Written by JohnMcDonnell

Oh No They Didn't!


Potter fan sites from around the globe helped us with the Pottermore name reveal, and now those same fan sites have been kind enough to tell us what their readers most want to know about the Pottermore experience.

While we can’t give everything away (even though we know you’d like us to!), we’d really love to answer some of your questions …

Will Pottermore be available in multiple languages?
Yes. Initially, Pottermore will be available in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish. We are aiming to introduce more languages in the future – including Japanese and Korean later this year. You’ll be able to keep track of language availability here on the Insider.

Will Pottermore be free?
Yes, access to Pottermore will be completely free; you won’t have to pay anything to use the site. The Pottermore Shop will have items in it that you’ll be able to buy, but choosing to purchase something – or not – won’t affect your progress through the story as the Shop sits outside of the online reading experience.

Can you please explain what you mean by ‘online reading experience’? How much will I, as a Pottermore user, be able to affect the story? After all, hasn’t Harry’s story already been told?
The best way to think of Pottermore is as an interactive, illustrated companion to the books. J.K. Rowling wanted to create a site where her stories could live on and where readers could explore them in a new way. In addition to discovering new material from J.K. Rowling about Harry’s world, you’ll be able to interact with key story Moments (the Sorting Hat sequence, for example) and upload your own comments, thoughts and artwork for all the characters, objects and places that you come across.

So Pottermore isn’t a massively multiplayer online role-playing game like World of Warcraft, or a social network game like Farmville?
No. While there will be some simple games you can play (you’ll be able to brew potions, for example), Pottermore is very much about the books: being able to experience Harry’s story in a new way and discover all the additional information that J.K. Rowling has written.

Isn’t there a House Cup that we compete for by earning points?
Yes, there is. As you progress through the story you’ll also be able to earn house points – and once you get to the end of the first book you can carry on earning points to help your house win the House Cup.

Would you say Pottermore is a social network for fans of Harry Potter?
Not really. Pottermore isn’t trying to compete with sites like Facebook or the Harry Potter forums and fan sites that are already out there. Once you’ve signed up to Pottermore you’ll be able to find and invite your Facebook friends (if you’re over thirteen) and leave comments in your house common room and the Great Hall, but Pottermore isn’t a social networking site where you can share personal information or chat in forums.

I saw the Sony logo at the top of Pottermore.com. What’s Sony’s involvement with the site?
Sony is the primary partner of Pottermore. They have been consulted and involved in the development of the site experience and will offer a range of products and services to Pottermore users.

Is Pottermore the Harry Potter encyclopedia?
J.K. Rowling has written exclusive new material especially for Pottermore giving unique insights, back stories and additional information about the characters, places and objects in the Harry Potter series. For now, Pottermore is the only place you’ll be able to find new information from J.K. Rowling about Harry’s world, and we’ll be releasing this material as each of the seven books appears on the site.

Once I’ve been sorted, will I be able to change houses?
J.K. Rowling has created a series of questions for the Sorting Hat, and how you answer these questions will determine which of the four houses you’ll be in. Once you’ve been sorted, you won’t be able to change; the Sorting Hat’s decision is final!

What formats will the ebooks be available in? Will I be able to read them on my iPad/Sony eReader/Kindle…?
The Pottermore Shop is due to open in October. Our aim is to offer the ebooks in an as many formats as possible. We’ll provide more information closer to the time.

I’ve submitted my email to the Pottermore website – does this mean I’m registered with Pottermore.com?
Not yet. If you’ve submitted your email address to the site, we’ll use it to let you know when site registration is open to everyone. In other words, once you’ve received an email from us, you’ll be able to visit Pottermore.com and complete the registration process.

Remember, to get into Hogwarts you must have magical ability…

What’s going to happen on 31 July?
We don’t want to ruin the surprise but something will be happening on Pottermore.com on 31 July. Come back to the site, or keep an eye on the Pottermore Insider (
http://insider.pottermore.com) and our Pottermore Twitter feed for details.

Is the Pottermore Owl Twitter account official?
No, it’s not – but we kind of wish we’d thought of it!

SOURCE

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

Harry Potter Costumes Make Your Halloween Magical

J.K. Rowling took the world by storm with the Harry Potter series. This Halloween, you can enjoy the mystical world of Hogwarts and Quidditch with a Harry Potter Halloween costume. There are costumes for both children and adults, so there is sure to be something you love.

We have all been there, getting completely caught up in a world of enchantment with Harry and Hermione. We have spent countless hours reading every Harry Potter book that J.K Rowling sets before our eyes, reading on and on because we are just so captivated with how her story comes to life. Her powerful tale of young boy who dearly misses his parents has touched the lives of so many people in this world. With a story loved by so many, it is no wonder that Potter has become one of the latest crazes out there today.

.99
Adult Harry Potter Robe has gryffindor emblem & clasp.

Obviously, if you decide to see what it’s like to live in Harry’s shoes for an evening, you’ll need those perfectly round framed glasses (check your local drugstore for the proper style reading glasses, and just snap the lenses out, or pick up a pair at any costume shop) and that famous lightning bolt shaped scar (a bit of make-up will work, or you can really make it stand out by purchasing a theatrical make-up kit, which should also be available at your local drugstore).

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Naturally, you would want to be Harry. After all, being the Chosen One comes with a lot of perks. But there are several Harry Potter costume ideas to choose from. First is the long, black Gryffindor robe that you can buy in adult and children’s sizes. The Gryffindor robe is the most basic thing you will need. In fact, you are sure to recreate any character from the Gryffindor house with the robe at hand. You just have to dye your hair red if you want to be one of the Weasleys or rumple your hair to make it big if you want to be Hermione.

.99 (Retail .99)
Hooded robe with attached shirtfront and mask. Just like the Harry Potter movies.

Considering the popularity, it is most likely that you would find Ron and Hermoine, or even a Dumbldore and Voldermort too somewhere in the Halloween party. You can initiate your mini club of Harry Potter buffs, and play your characters throughout. Do refresh your knowledge from the book, so that no matter what, you remain the undisputed Harry fan.

Of course, you can also portray Harry in his crimson Quidditch robes and a number of necessary accessories to complete the look. The officially-licensed Quidditch costume looks exactly like Harry’s robe in the movie, long and flowing with an attached hood and yellow stripes on the sleeves. The Gryffindor house crest is emblazoned on the left chest. If you really want to be the ultra-talented Gryffindor Quidditch team captain, make sure you also get a broom and a Quidditch helmet for your child.

.99 (Retail .99)

Do not forget to polish your school shoes. While Harry will wear grey trousers, Ginny will wear a grey skirt. Having a wand along just completes the look of your Halloween costumes design.

http://halloweencostumesexpressideas.com/

Hermione is jelous of Fleur, and compares their lifestyles I know this vid has been made before but I couldn’t resist trying my own version !!!!! (clips are from GOF)

Pottermore Insider: You ask, we answer

Potter fan sites from around the globe helped us with the Pottermore name reveal, and now those same fan sites have been kind enough to tell us what their readers most want to know about the Pottermore experience.

While we can’t give everything away (even though we know you’d like us to!), we’d really love to answer some of your questions …

Will Pottermore be available in multiple languages?
Yes. Initially, Pottermore will be available in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish. We are aiming to introduce more languages in the future – including Japanese and Korean later this year. You’ll be able to keep track of language availability here on the Insider.

Will Pottermore be free?
Yes, access to Pottermore will be completely free; you won’t have to pay anything to use the site. The Pottermore Shop will have items in it that you’ll be able to buy, but choosing to purchase something – or not – won’t affect your progress through the story as the Shop sits outside of the online reading experience.

Can you please explain what you mean by ‘online reading experience’? How much will I, as a Pottermore user, be able to affect the story? After all, hasn’t Harry’s story already been told?
The best way to think of Pottermore is as an interactive, illustrated companion to the books. J.K. Rowling wanted to create a site where her stories could live on and where readers could explore them in a new way. In addition to discovering new material from J.K. Rowling about Harry’s world, you’ll be able to interact with key story Moments (the Sorting Hat sequence, for example) and upload your own comments, thoughts and artwork for all the characters, objects and places that you come across.

So Pottermore isn’t a massively multiplayer online role-playing game like World of Warcraft, or a social network game like Farmville?
No. While there will be some simple games you can play (you’ll be able to brew potions, for example), Pottermore is very much about the books: being able to experience Harry’s story in a new way and discover all the additional information that J.K. Rowling has written.

Isn’t there a House Cup that we compete for by earning points?
Yes, there is. As you progress through the story you’ll also be able to earn house points – and once you get to the end of the first book you can carry on earning points to help your house win the House Cup.

Would you say Pottermore is a social network for fans of Harry Potter?
Not really. Pottermore isn’t trying to compete with sites like Facebook or the Harry Potter forums and fan sites that are already out there. Once you’ve signed up to Pottermore you’ll be able to find and invite your Facebook friends (if you’re over thirteen) and leave comments in your house common room and the Great Hall, but Pottermore isn’t a social networking site where you can share personal information or chat in forums.

I saw the Sony logo at the top of Pottermore.com. What’s Sony’s involvement with the site?
Sony is the primary partner of Pottermore. They have been consulted and involved in the development of the site experience and will offer a range of products and services to Pottermore users.

Is Pottermore the Harry Potter encyclopedia?
J.K. Rowling has written exclusive new material especially for Pottermore giving unique insights, back stories and additional information about the characters, places and objects in the Harry Potter series. For now, Pottermore is the only place you’ll be able to find new information from J.K. Rowling about Harry’s world, and we’ll be releasing this material as each of the seven books appears on the site.

Once I’ve been sorted, will I be able to change houses?
J.K. Rowling has created a series of questions for the Sorting Hat, and how you answer these questions will determine which of the four houses you’ll be in. Once you’ve been sorted, you won’t be able to change; the Sorting Hat’s decision is final!

What formats will the ebooks be available in? Will I be able to read them on my iPad/Sony eReader/Kindle…?
The Pottermore Shop is due to open in October. Our aim is to offer the ebooks in an as many formats as possible. We’ll provide more information closer to the time.

I’ve submitted my email to the Pottermore website – does this mean I’m registered with Pottermore.com?
Not yet. If you’ve submitted your email address to the site, we’ll use it to let you know when site registration is open to everyone. In other words, once you’ve received an email from us, you’ll be able to visit Pottermore.com and complete the registration process.

Remember, to get into Hogwarts you must have magical ability…

What’s going to happen on 31 July?
We don’t want to ruin the surprise but something will be happening on Pottermore.com on 31 July. Come back to the site, or keep an eye on the Pottermore Insider (http://insider.pottermore.com) and our Pottermore Twitter feed for details.

Is the Pottermore Owl Twitter account official?
No, it’s not – but we kind of wish we’d thought of it!

Thanks to all the sites that helped us collect the questions for this post: Blog Hogwarts, Clube do Slugue, Harry Potter Xperts, HPANA, The Leaky Cauldron, Mugglenet, Portus, SnitchSeeker, and L’Univers De Harry Potter.

Photo: the Pottermore team’s well-thumbed copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

Of Magic and Muggles: Should Christian Kids Read (or Watch) Harry Potter?

If you have children at home, you may remember a growing anticipation during the first weeks of July 2007. As a public librarian, I can certainly remember the excitement in my young readers.

You probably know what happened when the clock struck midnight on Friday, July 20. That’s right—the seventh (and final) installment in the phenomenal Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, was unleashed on the reading world.

Shortly after the book’s release, filming began on the sixth Harry Potter movie. And last summer, on July 15, 2009, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was released in cinemas around the world.

The question that had many young readers sitting on the edge of their seats, anxiously waiting to read the final book in the popular series: does Harry live, or will he die?

And the question Christian parents have faced with each book or film release: should their kids be reading books and watching films about wizards, witches, and magic?

After some research, many parents find that there are simply no easy answers. As one Christian expert on Potter mania, Connie Neal, says: “It depends.”

The author of What’s a Christian to do with Harry Potter?, Neal says parents must use discernment when deciding whether or not to allow their kids to read the Harry Potter series. She has no problem with Christians reading secular novels, and she bases this on her reading of the Bible’s book of Daniel.

“He [Daniel] was not afraid to read literature that resounded in the hearts of the people with whom he lived,” writes Neal. “He used his familiarity with this pagan literature to reveal the true and living God.”

In BreakPoint commentary, Chuck Colson explains. In Babylon, “he [Daniel] was taught the language and literature of the pagan culture. He studied at a school that trained Babylon’s magicians, astrologers, and sorcerers. The actual practice of sorcery and astrology was, of course, forbidden by God. But Daniel studied it well to understand it.”

“Although the books are not Christ-centered and don’t promote Christianity, they still offer powerful lessons in compassion, courage, self-sacrifice, and doing the right thing,” says Lisa Jackson, writing for Christianity Today,

Colson agrees. “Not bad lessons in a self-centered world,” he says.

As many are quick to point out, the Harry Potter books are creative, insightful, and just plain fun. And for the Christian, they can be used as a springboard to further discussions about God, morals, and the supernatural world.

Yet there are legitimate concerns.

“The element of the supernatural has stirred up a cauldron of controversy,” writes journalist James N. Watkins. “Some Christians believe that the entire series violates both Old and New Testament commands to avoid witchcraft.”

He cites Deuteronomy 18:10-12: “Let no one be found among you who…practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells…. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord….”

But is the magic in Harry Potter any different than the magic in C. S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe or J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings? Is the magic in Harry Potter and other fantasy novels the same magic that the Bible warns about?

Some Christian experts say no. Colson describes the Potter magic as “purely mechanical, as opposed to occultic,” and “not the witchcraft that the Bible condemns.”

Watkins agrees. J. K. Rowling’s world seems to be more “secular” than “occult.” Yet he concedes that the Potter series is very different from Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia, “where the White Witch is undeniably evil and Aslan, the Christ-like lion, is purely good.” In Rowling’s world, the line gets blurred.

The biggest concern among Christians is that the series—marketed to children—presents witchcraft as something attractive. While the Hogwarts witchcraft does not contain elements of Wicca or nature worship, say the experts, it does make witchcraft seem innocent and fun. Critics are fearful of the influence these books and films could have on impressionable young minds.

Neal cautions parents that kids with an unhealthy interest in the occult should probably not read the books. The fairy-tale magic at Hogwarts seems innocent, but it could be dangerous if it became a gateway to interest in Wicca or an unhealthy fascination with the supernatural world.

John Andrew Murray, writing for Focus on the Family, agrees. “By disassociating magic and supernatural evil, it becomes possible to portray occult practices as good and healthy. This, in turn, opens the door for less discerning individuals to become confused about supernatural things,” he says.

But Lisa Jackson sides with Colson, Watkins, and others who believe that the world of wizards and magic created by Rowling is not the same kind of evil practices condemned in Scripture.

And Italian theologian Massimo Intovigne says, “Magic is the main metaphor for life in fairy tales. If one should ban Harry Potter, one should also ban Peter Pan, Cinderella, and Pinocchio.” Al Menconi Ministries agrees, adding Snow White, The Wizard of Oz, and Shrek to the list. Menconi calls the magic of Harry Potter’s world “silly stuff.” Not witchcraft, but someone’s imagination.

This is not to minimize witchcraft. The Bible clearly condemns it. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 says, “Avoid every kind of evil.” Modern witchcraft is real and scary. It’s a seductive force that Christian parents must protect their children from. Christian parents definitely need to be aware of what their children are reading, watching, and listening to.

But if families choose to read the Harry Potter books or watch the movies together, the stories can provide a starting point for talking about the evils of the world. They can give families a chance to discuss how the power Harry uses to defeat evil is much different than the power we have from God.

Christian children need to understand that the Lord condemns witchcraft. They need to know that witchcraft is very real and evil and should be avoided—but that Harry Potter is simply a book.

The question really comes down to one thing: what is best for your child? “You know your child better than anyone else and only you can predict how he’ll be affected by these books,” says Jackson.

“With more than 325 million of them in print [2007 statistics], your kids will probably see them or hear others talk about them, and they’re probably going to read them anyway,” says Colson. He suggests that Christian parents use this occasion to teach their children to be discerning, like Daniel in the Bible.

Use the opportunity to have a dialogue with your kids about God and Jesus, love and sacrifice, morals, the supernatural, and other complex issues that are a very real part of youth culture today.

Related Article:

Harry Potter: a Christian Evangelistic Opportunity?

Written by AnnetteSmith
Freelance writer

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