I bet you were all wondering when this post was coming, right? Well, grab a butterbeer and sit yourself by the common room fire. Perhaps you’ve just finished a thrilling Quidditch game, or you’re coming back from classes with tons of Charms homework. Worry not! Relax, because I’m going to tell you about why I love Harry Potter so much. Please note that there will be spoilers if you’ve yet to read the series!
I would have been four years old when the first Harry Potter book was published – far too little to have an interest in a book that big and also with the fact I wouldn’t be able to read at that level. By the time it came around to my attention, I was 8. The hype that was Harry Potter had begun to get bigger, with a sudden excitement for the books to be read by everyone and whisperings of a movie beginning to form. I remember wanting the book so badly so that I could join my friends discussing it. I don’t really remember how I got the first book, but once I had it I was hooked.
The world captured me straight away. I was so curious to know about the wizarding world, this strange place known as Hogwarts, and the different lessons the students had to learn. Hermione instantly became my favourite character at that early age, and I loved her curly hair and her magical abilities.
I remember the second and third books far clearer, with the buzz and excitement absolutely huge at school. We’d race from the classrooms when one of our favourite teachers said he would be continuing to read us Prisoner of Azkaban, and we sat on the floor leaning forward as he perfected the voices of Hagrid and Dumbledore. The fourth book was an absolute blur, but by the time I got to this book I realised that we were far gone from levitating feathers in first year Charms.
When Cedric died, I was shocked. I had grown to like book Cedric. He was helpful and wanted to make sure Harry got as far into the trials as he did. When Voldemort was resurrected at the end of the book and instantly murdered Cedric, my blood ran cold. Harry Potter had turned dark without my realising, and finally the threat of Voldemort that had loomed since book one was the worst it had ever been. He was back, and the books were about to go into far darker territory.
Order of the Phoenix came around, and by this time my character favourites were beginning to change. While I still loved Hermione, other characters were cementing themselves as firmer and fonder favourites. Luna Lovegood practically burst out of the page with her whimsical expressions and sayings, while Fred and George Weasley were the ones to make me laugh when dark times had come to Hogwarts. During the Order of the Phoenix, a certain Draco Malfoy stuck himself to the top of my favourites list. I know Draco was a nasty piece of work, but something about his character made me like him.
My memory of the Half Blood Prince is mostly tearful. I cried at Hermione getting rudely rejected by Ron, I cried at Draco getting hexed in the bathroom, I cried at Dumbledore sacrificing himself by drinking the potion. It was a sad old time. By the time I was reading this one, I had to wait for my pre-ordered copy of The Deathly Hallows to come.
It arrived on release day and I practically snatched it from the delivery driver and ripped it open to start reading it. My sister’s story of me reading this book was of me crying about Snape dying. “But Snape is awful!” she’d said. “You don’t understand, he was good!” I sobbed back. My friends bragged about how they finished it in a day, three days, but I took my time. This was my final visit to Hogwarts, and the bloody trail of destruction in the book hurt my heart. Once I had finished, I closed the book with shaking fingers and couldn’t believe the words I’d read on the tear stained page. ‘All was well’.
Harry Potter has stuck with me since I read the first page of the first book. I’ve seen the films, visited the studio tour, and have always proudly professed my love for being a Hufflepuff (although I’m sure there’s a streak of Slytherin in me). I have my firm favourites and my most beloved quotes. I’m planning a Harry Potter tattoo. It’s probably safe to say that I’m very much a Potterhead.
Words can’t sum up how important Harry Potter is to me. While I’ve read many books that I’ve loved, nothing quite matches up to the sense of Harry Potter. It’s the book series that has brought fans together, with even something as simple as ‘What’s your Hogwarts house?’ becoming a conversation starter to grow friendships. I think it’ll always be a special book series in my heart.
Let me wipe my tears away. This post has been a work of pure love, and recently has fuelled my love for Potter even more so than before – if that was even possible. I’d love to hear your own memories of Harry Potter – when did you start reading them? Who is your favourite character? Let me know, and lets share the love for Harry Potter over and over again.