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I can't figure out the obsession with Harry Potter
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Crookshanks




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, May 06 2021, 12:32 pm
amother [ cornflower ] wrote:
I'll admit growing up with the books as a pre-teen, I did love them. But when I tried revisiting them when I was older, I found I couldn't get into them.
I think Rowling created an incredibly captivating universe which has captured the imaginations of millions of children (and adults), however she is not a good writer. You only have to look at her adult books-casual vacancy-anyone managed to understand and get through that awful book?
She had a great idea but the execution was poor. She didn't plan out the series well enough and there are many plot holes and concepts that don't make sense, even in the 'rules' of her world.
And each book follows the same pattern-3 immature children by a series of luck and misfortune end up running into trouble and just luckily manage to escape. There's always the invention of a convenient magic trick that isn't really reused or replicated later on-think time-turners-talk about deux ex machina if you ask me.
Before you die hard fans descend upon me with an unforgivable curse, this is coming from someone who is a self confessed readaholic, and fantasy is one of my favourite genres, and in my experience, Rowling had a wonderful idea, and there was so much more scope in her world for spin-offs and other series. But what did she do, some funny play that made even less sense, and then assisted with writing a series of screen plays for a trilogy of films that also didn't add up.
There are so many other fantasy writers where the world building is just so well developed, she falls so short. Obviously I'm not holding her to Tolkein's standards, but there are many other series out there that are better written and thought out.

Crucio!!!
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Scotty




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, May 06 2021, 5:34 pm
amother [ Periwinkle ] wrote:
Scotty, wherever you been?? Waiting for a new serial to start! Anything in the works?


Not to hijack the thread but 🙋‍♀️ hi!!!! Thank you thank you for your kind words!!! Working on a short novel now :-))) can’t wait to share soon!!!
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Siriusly?




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 9:00 am
amother [ cornflower ] wrote:
I'll admit growing up with the books as a pre-teen, I did love them. But when I tried revisiting them when I was older, I found I couldn't get into them.
I think Rowling created an incredibly captivating universe which has captured the imaginations of millions of children (and adults), however she is not a good writer. You only have to look at her adult books-casual vacancy-anyone managed to understand and get through that awful book?
She had a great idea but the execution was poor. She didn't plan out the series well enough and there are many plot holes and concepts that don't make sense, even in the 'rules' of her world.
And each book follows the same pattern-3 immature children by a series of luck and misfortune end up running into trouble and just luckily manage to escape. There's always the invention of a convenient magic trick that isn't really reused or replicated later on-think time-turners-talk about deux ex machina if you ask me.
Before you die hard fans descend upon me with an unforgivable curse, this is coming from someone who is a self confessed readaholic, and fantasy is one of my favourite genres, and in my experience, Rowling had a wonderful idea, and there was so much more scope in her world for spin-offs and other series. But what did she do, some funny play that made even less sense, and then assisted with writing a series of screen plays for a trilogy of films that also didn't add up.
There are so many other fantasy writers where the world building is just so well developed, she falls so short. Obviously I'm not holding her to Tolkein's standards, but there are many other series out there that are better written and thought out.


It's funny you think that the series isn't well-planned enough, because the thoroughness with which JKR planned the later books so early on in the series' writing is obvious to me, and one of its biggest draws. Of course, not everything can be planned, and ensuing years and books did introduce several loopholes, but that doesn't detract from the skills of the author. Yes, every book introduces new things, it would be boring to read seven books without expanding our view of the universe, and you can't cram all the small details into the first book. Many of the new things are inconsequential to the main events, some are major players, and many are reused later on. (Re time-turners in particular, JKR later regretted playing with time (don't blame her!). Still not sure why she then went on to create Cursed Child then, which I am in full agreement with you about. I've Obliviated that memory from myself, tbh).

As others have said, what makes this series so immersive is JKR's creation of a completely alternate universe that nevertheless feels so comfortable, it becomes like our own (I mean, how many of us realise, as we're reading the books, that we're actually Muggles? How many times have you pointed at something across the room and said, "Accio!" (or wished you could)?)

And Tolkien? Can't stand him Smile Throw the tomatoes...
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singleagain




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 9:03 am
By the way re: cursed child... I fully believe that was fanfiction I do not understand how that's considered canon
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icedcoffee




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 9:17 am
Crookshanks wrote:
Yes exactly re the bolded.
And that quote is beautiful. What book is it from?


The Catcher in the Rye! If you're anything like my 11th grade students, you'll either fall in love with it or absolutely hate it hahha.

singlegain wrote:
By the way re: cursed child... fully believe that was fanfiction do not understand how that's considered canon


Cursed Child is absolutely awful (Voldemort had a love-child with Bellatrix sounds like terrible fanfiction) and I think it's so interesting that the entire fandom just decided to reject it, lol. Like whether or not it was truly intended to be canon, everyone collectively said "thanks but nahhh." It raises some interesting points about the relationship between the author, readers, and text.

Harry Potter is always going to have a huge place in my heart, but I'm not enjoying all of the post-book mishegas. I know it's an eternal cash cow, but between Cursed Child, Fantastic Beasts, I wish she would've quit while she was ahead. But I will say that while reading Cursed Child was super lame, seeing it on Broadway was very cool - it translated much better seeing it live than reading it off a page.
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zaq




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 9:17 am
I don't get obsessions altogether. Or at least not the ones that continue for a long time. They can't be healthy--not if you mean a true obsession and not simply being an enthusiast. But every generation has its mishegossn. My generation had Dungeons and Dragons. You cannot imagine the excruciating boredom suffered by a non-D&D fan attending a party at which it seems all the other guests are playing D&D, rehashing their most recent D&D episode, planning their next D&D encounter, bragging about their D&D paraphernalia collection, or comparing D&D game strategies. OTOH would this be materially different if you substituted "chess" "Monopoly" "Instagram" "Outlander" or "Martha Stewart" for "D&D" or "Harry Potter"?
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Crookshanks




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 10:01 am
icedcoffee wrote:
Cursed Child is absolutely awful (Voldemort had a love-child with Bellatrix sounds like terrible fanfiction) and I think it's so interesting that the entire fandom just decided to reject it, lol. Like whether or not it was truly intended to be canon, everyone collectively said "thanks but nahhh." It raises some interesting points about the relationship between the author, readers, and text.

Harry Potter is always going to have a huge place in my heart, but I'm not enjoying all of the post-book mishegas. I know it's an eternal cash cow, but between Cursed Child, Fantastic Beasts, I wish she would've quit while she was ahead. But I will say that while reading Cursed Child was super lame, seeing it on Broadway was very cool - it translated much better seeing it live than reading it off a page.

Lol yes exactly this. I have so far refrained from reading it, even though I have been book-starved many a time.
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tigerwife




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 10:10 am
Like others have said, it’s very immersive and the world-building is fantastic. The characters are witty and funny and the dialogue is realistic.

I’d say for those of us who started reading them as they came out, there’s probably more attachment because nothing can recreate that anticipation before each release. We used to re-read the entire published series before each new one. Quite a few came out in the summer and I’m laughing at the memory of dozens of little brown packages arriving in the camp mail and campers reading in odd hiding spots with their fingers in their ears trying to avoid those annoying twits yelling spoilers. Oh, and I couldn’t stand the movies. Stopped at the fourth, I think. The movies just couldn’t capture what the writing did. They felt like random snapshots of book passages without the pacing and buildup of a great plot.
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zaq




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 11:44 am
southernbubby wrote:
These kids practically memorized every volume and I read part of one book because the child wanted me to. It's entertaining and well written but do kids identify with the characters? Doesn't every kid want to charm a snake or be on a quidditch team?


My kids knew whole passages by heart, but not because they memorized them or reread them so often; just because the language is engaging, very easy to read despite the sophisticated vocabulary, and kids have minds like sponges. They enjoyed the books but didn't playact at being the characters, want to be a wizard for Purim, or ask us to buy them their own wand and cauldron. .
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amother




Navy
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 11:52 am
tigerwife wrote:
Like others have said, it’s very immersive and the world-building is fantastic. The characters are witty and funny and the dialogue is realistic.

I’d say for those of us who started reading them as they came out, there’s probably more attachment because nothing can recreate that anticipation before each release.


This, 100%. The first few came out in rapid succession, so there was momentum there. There were longer and longer gaps between the later volumes, so while there was still anticipation, it wasn't as intense. Hope deferred and all that. When the first movie came out I was still interested but not salivating. After that I was no longer interested. Speaking as a person who was in her forties when the first book came out. I found out about it at, believe it or not, a professional association meeting. One of the attendees sitting near me was reading the book during breaks.

Wait, I just reread your post. No, I'm not "attached" to HP in any way. I would reread if there were nothing else around that I hadn't also already read, but given a choice between HP and something new, something new would win. I read them all twice and that's enough. So many books, so little time, you know? Yes, I remember how I'd reserve the books in the library before they even came out, be despondent that I was number 38 on the list, and then rejoice to see that the library had ordered 40 copies. But I couldn't believe the people who would camp out in front of bookstores for days before the latest release. That's carrying things a whole lot too far. I had no need to be the first on my block to read the books. A day or a week later was fine.

I think we have to thank Ms. Rowling for making reading "cool" and attractive even to reluctant readers. Who knows how many kids learned to love reading as a result?
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amother




Navy
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:18 pm
Siriusly? wrote:


And Tolkien? Can't stand him Smile Throw the tomatoes...


Your sn makes your position on HP obvious!
HP is the only fantasy work I have ever enjoyed. Never could get through anything by Tolkien or CS Lewis, ever. The only way I'd read either of them--maybe--would be if I were stranded alone on a desert island with only one of their books for amusement. And even then I'd be more likely to use the book to build a fire or a sunshade.
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youngishbear




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:23 pm
amother [ Navy ] wrote:
Your sn makes your position on HP obvious!
HP is the only fantasy work I have ever enjoyed. Never could get through anything by Tolkien or CS Lewis, ever. The only way I'd read either of them--maybe--would be if I were stranded alone on a desert island with only one of their books for amusement. And even then I'd be more likely to use the book to build a fire or a sunshade.


For me, HP was the gateway to fantasy altogether. I haven't found anything that gripped me more than HP did, but before that I wouldn't touch anything that wasn't "realistic" fiction. I'm grateful that it opened my horizons.

To be honest, it's taking me literally years to get through The Lord of the Rings, mostly because Tolkien's writing is really dense and there is so much geography. I suspect Deathly Hallows is a homage to LotR.

As for the Chronicles of Narnia, I have other books I want to get to before I read a children's series on Christianity, but I'll probably get to it one day.

Maybe it's time for a spinoff on other fantasy series.
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zaq




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:32 pm
I dunno about worldbuilding; the clever WORDbuilding is what got me. I probably missed half the puns and word jokes, there were so many. I can just see Rowling laughing her head off as she invents a name for a character, concept or object. Pensieve? Brilliant!
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Crookshanks




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:44 pm
zaq wrote:
I dunno about worldbuilding; the clever WORDbuilding is what got me. I probably missed half the puns and word jokes, there were so many. I can just see Rowling laughing her head off as she invents a name for a character, concept or object. Pensieve? Brilliant!

What's the wordplay here?
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amother




Tan
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:51 pm
hodeez wrote:
The series is just so engaging, interesting, multi-faceted. Every time you read it you discover something you missed the time before.


Yessssss that’s exactly what I always say
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cbsp




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:52 pm
Crookshanks wrote:
What's the wordplay here?


Pensive
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tigerwife




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 12:59 pm
zaq wrote:
I dunno about worldbuilding; the clever WORDbuilding is what got me. I probably missed half the puns and word jokes, there were so many. I can just see Rowling laughing her head off as she invents a name for a character, concept or object. Pensieve? Brilliant!


Oh yes, I love how every magical phrase and many names have real etymological roots. Since I read them from tween through teens, I learned a lot from them!
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singleagain




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 1:03 pm
tigerwife wrote:
Oh yes, I love how every magical phrase and many names have real etymological roots. Since I read them from tween through teens, I learned a lot from them!


You'll prob get a kick from this Tumblr post

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bigsis144




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 1:05 pm
tigerwife wrote:
Oh yes, I love how every magical phrase and many names have real etymological roots. Since I read them from tween through teens, I learned a lot from them!


It’s just the right amount of Latin roots in the spell words (lumos, petrificus totalus, sectum sempra, etc), or borrowed world mythology (probably the first time many kids have heard of basilisks or redcaps), or astronomical references (Sirius the Dog Star! And keeping the star themes for Andromeda and Regulus and Draco and Bellatrix...) for a kid to figure out and feel clever.

Like I said, I’m not even the biggest Harry Potter fan, but it’s a series that feels like a perfect warm cup of cider (or butterbeer) on a crisp autumn day. It’s homey and cozy and has its own atmospheric verisimilitude, no matter what plot holes or logical nitpicks you find.


Last edited by bigsis144 on Fri, May 07 2021, 1:11 pm; edited 2 times in total
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tigerwife




 
 
 
 

Post Fri, May 07 2021, 1:07 pm
Lol single again! Yup, HP was the main source of my Latin education, although I also learned some mythology through characters’ names.
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