This is the story of a seven-year-old girl.
My favorite Harry Potter book is Sorcerer’s Stone. This has long been up for debate since Prisoner of Azkaban held that slot for many, many years, but in my adult years, I’ve come back to it again and again, so I think it’s fair to finally set it at number one.
One of my cats is named after Lily Evans because I think she is, hands down, one of the most badass female characters ever.
When I was thirteen, I got a black stuffed bear and named it Snuffles because Sirius Black is one of my favorite characters.
I have four HP tattoos. Harry’s glasses with the lightning bolt above them. The three stars at the top corner of each page. Sirius’ signature from Goblet of Fire in his letters to Harry, and his Azkaban numbers. The four pawprints of the Marauders.
That reminds me–my least favorite Harry Potter book is Goblet of Fire, get that monstrosity away from me.
I’ve read all of them at least twice, two-six at least three times, and the first one five times. (I periodically reread Sorcerer’s Stone at least every other July because duh.)
I can chat about the James versus Snape bullying for hours and not get into a shouting match because, for some reason, Harry Potter means civil conversation to me.
I cried at certain deaths. I screamed into my pillow at others. I threw the book at one in particular. I stared in shock for a few.
For books one to three, I patiently sat under my covers and waited for my dad to read the next chapter. For book four, I quietly asked if I could read it on my own. For books five to seven, we went to midnight releases at Barnes & Noble. For all seven movies, we went to midnight premieres, and I dressed up as Hermione every time.
I own all the movies from their original release, which means the formatting is hilarious, and I’ve seen them so many times I can quote all of Chamber of Secrets.
I’ve read every schoolbook and screenplay. I sorted myself on Pottermore (Gryffindor, duh), I was given a Patronus (Newfoundland dog, I mean come on), and I paced stressfully while my House results loaded.
And it all started with a seven-year-old girl.
Yup, that’s me. Christmas 1999, the first one in our brand new house, and one of my favorite presents were the first three Harry Potter books. When I saw them, I ran over to my dad with this big smile of excitement. That’s still how I react to a Harry Potter anything in the general vicinity. I recently went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter @ Universal Studios in Los Angeles, CA and cried quite a bit over all of it. It’s been HOLY MAGIC IT’S BEEN TWENTY YEARS.
I didn’t realize until right this second. It’s been twenty years since I was first introduced to this series. WOW. Okay, so this is actually the perfect time for this project, and now I’m even more motivated to make it happen.
Twenty years ago, I was introduced to the Harry Potter series, and since then, they have remained among my top three favorite books of all time. And while I see a lot of people trying not to use them in blog posts in the book community, I also see a lot of people who haven’t read them, or are too intimidated to read them.
Thus, this post is an introduction to something I am calling The Potter Project. I’m currently wading my way through An Adventure in Tolkien, in which I read literally everything published by Tolkien concerning Middle Earth, and this is kind of similar. The only difference is that the posts for the Tolkien challenge are a bit nonsensical and mostly just me ranting about my love of drama elves. The Potter Project, however, will be unbiased (or as much as I can make them), in-depth, and coherent reviews of the entire Harry Potter series. And, I should warn you, when I say review, I really mean research paper. I did not intend for them to be as long as they already are, but I’m also not surprised.
The upcoming seven posts (along with a few special extra posts!) will be for those who wish to relive why they love them, but also for those who want to know what all the fuss is about. As a warning, books five, six, and seven will contain spoilers. I will be discussing the deaths and major plot points that happen in those books. Books one-four don’t really have either of those (or, at least, nothing earth-shattering), so if you’ve somehow managed to avoid who dies in the last three books, keep an eye out for a bold SPOILERS marker in the reviews for those posts.
The review for Sorcerer’s Stone should be out by the middle of August just in time for the new Hogwarts school term to start, and until then–