So this post will be entirely dedicated to the Harry Potter. Or better… the book series. And the audio books.
First off, to comment the Photo of the Day: I’ve received my Complete Collection: a box that contains all seven paperbacks. Had ordered it to be delivered to my local book store (as you know, I don’t shop books on Amazon but rather support the stationary book shops, which is more important than throwing book-money into Amazon’s mouth thank you very much) and picked it up earlier this afternoon.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of The Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
It’s the first time ever that I’ve bought the printed version of (a) book(s) after reading it/them on the e-book reader or listening to it as an audio book.
But everyone who knows the Harry Potter series will not really question this, I’m sure.
If you read this blog regularly, you’ll remember that I have discovered Harry Potter through my newfound love for audio books. I only wanted to check out an English book and looked for one that would not be all too difficult to understand.
I only listened to a 5-minute-audio-sample of the first book and was completely hooked! Never would I have checked out the printed versions. Never ever would I have thought this is something for me. And here I was, addicted to listening to Stephen Fry’s wonderful narrating.
It was only after the first book that I listened to something different. After book #2 I kept going without interruption. It was the last book that took me the longest to get through. The only two reasons for that were: a) I couldn’t listen when I was sick – no way to concentrate and b) I tried to stretch it out as much as possible because I didn’t want it to end.
But the inevitable end came some days ago.
The first thing I wanted to do was taking a real book into my hands and start reading everything again from the start. Which, if you know me, is VERY unusual. I’m not someone who reads a book twice, no matter how good it is. I don’t even read a book after I’ve seen the movie adaptation because I lose interest when I know the story.
What did it for me in the end was Stephen Fry’s narrating. I know I’m repeating myself over and over with this, but I can’t praise this man enough for what he’s done with the books. I’ve tried once with the German narrator – insufferable! I listened to an audio sample of the American narrator out of curiosity – better, but still not as perfect.
So if you plan to listen to the English audio books of Harry Potter, I URGE you to choose the British version. And it doesn’t matter if you’re already familiar with the books or not.
If you now think I’ll be writing reviews of each book – no I won’t. There are tons of you out there who are familiar with the storylines of each book and those who are not will not be persuaded to read the series by me telling the exact plot of each book. All I can say here is: if you have ever wondered if this could be something for you… don’t hesitate – READ!
So what is it, that is so special about this story… these 4100 pages? It’s first of all J.K. Rowling’s writing. No, it’s not flawless, yet in no way bad or mundane. It’s amazing, the world that she creates. And those characters. That little boy who loses his parents and grows up with his nasty Aunt and Uncle until he learns that there’s another world than the grey and unfriendly one he’s used to: a world full of excitement, wizards, witches and magic. And we, the readers, experience everything from his point of view and go with him through all these crazy adventures. We grow up with him, suffer with him, feel his angst, his joy, his courage. And we can totally relate because we were all teenagers once with the same problems, fears and joys when growing up!
We get to love all these wonderful characters: From Harry, The Boy Who Lived, to bright and brilliant Hermione, to the funniest and most loyal friend Ron and his awesome family – the Weasley’s, to Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts who guides Harry with a careful hand, to Professor Snape who’s got to be the most complex and interesting character of the series (to me at least), to beloved Hagrid the half giant… even to
Voldemort (He Who Must Not Be Named) and not to forget Hedwig, the beautiful snowy owl and Harry’s dear companion. The list would endless if I named them all… those characters who feel like they’ve become personal friends by now.
And if anyone thinks, these books are only for kids/teens… this couldn’t be farther from the truth. That’s one of the amazing facts about Harry Potter: Rowling has created something that is for the young and the adult alike.
And now I got the complete DVD collection of all movies from Santa and treated myself to the complete collection of books.
I think that says it all.
Thank you J. K. Rowling for coming up with this incredible story.
Thank you Stephen Fry for your wonderful narrating and for bringing the characters of the story to life in a one-of-a-kind way.