Thursday, 23 August 2012
The Harry Potter books have been a phenom that has swept the publishing industry, reigniting a passion for reading in young people. The current book craze among young adults can in my opinion be credited to this series. Rowling has created an engaging world that isn't simply fantasy. It is heavily grounded in our everyday realities. Who hasn't felt a little out of place at the age of 10? It depicts the typical or in this case not so typical experience of going away to school. I particularly love the way she draws parallels between the wizard world and the "real" or muggle world. She has created characters that are truly engaging and rootable. I feel like she has drawn on the tradition of the British classics like Jane Eyre by having it center on a young orphan who is poorly treated by his relatives. While not nearly as dark, it makes Harry just as rootable. You want him to succeed, to live and to prosper. This first book is a lot of fun because it establishes the parameters for the story. You know who your good guys are and who your bad ones are. This story has a strong plot that really emphasizes the concept of less is more. It's not riddled with a bunch of crazy twists in turns, but rather how the ordinary becomes extraordinary. She also has an engaging style that draws in readers of all ages. It's not simply a children's book, it's a book for all ages.
Unlike the last two books I've reviewed, I highly recommend you read this series. I can't wait to finish myself.