Friday, July 15, 2005

Harry Potter

It seems that there are three sorts of people when it comes to Harry Potter: those who are passionate supporters, those who are passionate opponents, and those who are passionate ignorers of it all. Although, on the basis that I have a copy pre-ordered from Amazon that will hopefully pop through my letterbox tomorrow, I am a member of the first group I do ask myself is it really worth all this fuss. I like the stories, and am very happy that through them loads of people (and not just kids) can come to associate reading with having fun, but this all seems excessive. Why anyone wants to stand outside a shop for a midnight opening defies me. It's just a book, when all is said and done. In a hundred years' time the whole series might well be forgotten. Also, I think the hype is dangerous. Ultimately, nothing can live up to being over-hyped, and that disappointment is damaging. For that reason I am keeping my expectatinos firmly on the ground.

Make no mistake, I like the stories, but JK Rowling is not, in my opinion, a particularly gifted writer. Oh, the stories themselves are inspired, the characterisations clear and engaging, but the writing is nowhere near that high quality. As for the story itself, it has been slowly building, but it will be hard to make the climax worth the build-up. Not impossible, just tricky.

I will give a full report once I have read it, but these are my pre-reading thoughts.

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