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12 January 2013 @ 10:56 pm
The Great Harry Potter Reread of 2013: Prologue  
Spurned on by the adventures of pinstripers16 as she boldly returns to that which made our adolescence and early-college careers so great, I have decided to reread the entirety of the Harry Potter series over the course of several weeks. I will be blogging about it here.

The box, which had in a former life held eggs, contained a number of things I'd largely forgotten: a comb with several strands of hair colored not like mine, a set of Buffy DVDs I must return to papilio_luna before I die, and the box set of Harry Potter I'd purchased with a tax return from back in the days when I couldn't afford to eat but could absolutely afford books.

It's not that I had forgotten I owned them. But I'd forgotten the box it came in. I'd forgotten the crease right in the middle of The Sorcerer's Stone. I'd forgotten marking pages with highlighters and scribbling notes in the corners.

To tell you the truth, I return to this world somewhat warily. I am, after all, now several years older than the last time I seriously perused the pages. I've a lot more education (which might change the way I look at things, might remove the preconceived notions I have about characters and motivations, might call into question ideas I've defended for a long time). I've got more experience as a writer. I've got experience in this fandom, which might impede or enhance my experience. I've got more experience as an educator -- I might now find myself looking at Harry through the lens of an adult -- wondering where his parents are, wondering why he had no strong advocate throughout the series.

Or I might, you know, stick with the classics. I might admire the sheer force of will it took for Harry to practically raise himself. I might wince at Hermione's growing pains, but cheer when she gets one right. I might not understand Ron's journey this time -- or I might understand it all too well, having folded when the pressure was too high myself.

I just don't know. How am I going to feel about this?

This is why I like rereading books, actually. I'm a slightly different person. I'm going to notice slightly different things. And in truth? I've missed Harry. I'm excited to see him again. To visit his world and stay for a time. To crawl around inside his eyes and look through his eyes.

I pick up the first pages of The Sorcerer's Stone. I rub a hand over the cover -- it has a jam stain, faded. No longer sticky, but the texture's not quite right. Too many days of eating-and-reading. I take a deep breath. And dive in.

The Dursleys, of Number 4, Privet Drive, were happy to say they were perfectly normal, thank you very much...
 
 
 
Julia: Gryffindorpinstripers16 on January 13th, 2013 05:26 am (UTC)
I'm looking forward to your commentary on the books so many years later. Also, you should watch this video 'cause it's sweet.
Amiewickedgillie on January 13th, 2013 01:56 pm (UTC)
Did you mean to include a link to a video?
Julia: Trio lovepinstripers16 on January 13th, 2013 04:34 pm (UTC)
Chi: Harry/Ginny bad assladychi on January 13th, 2013 08:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I'm still trying to decide if I'm going to do like -- whole books at a time, or if I'll feel the need to break them into more manageable chunks. I suspect that SS I'll be able to do in two posts, and the same with CoS. ... from there on.... it gets tricky!
Amiewickedgillie on January 13th, 2013 01:55 pm (UTC)
I just read the whole of Harry Potter right after my birthday. It really is a series that begs to be re-read, with new insights spotted, bits of language appreciated, and just getting sucked into brilliant world for a time, where all of this doesn't just seem possible, but plausible.
Chiladychi on January 13th, 2013 08:15 pm (UTC)
I've done rereads before, of course, and always enjoyed it... I'm looking forward to seeing what I discover this time!
Margaret_missmargaret_ on January 13th, 2013 06:33 pm (UTC)
I read it for the first time last year. As an adult. And while I understand (and agree with) your questions of your view with your world experiences, I think that returning to the series will be overwhelmingly positive. Think of all those other "children's books" we return to throughout our adult years: The Chronicles of Narnia, The Hobbit, A Wrinkle in Time, To Kill a Mockingbird. They teach our adult selves something new. Embrace this re-read of Harry Potter, my friend. I think you're gonna love your new perspective.
Chiladychi on January 13th, 2013 08:16 pm (UTC)
I really can't wait. I'm through to Diagon Alley now -- should be doing the first for-real entry in the next couple of days.
Laura: hp dd swordonlyobsess on January 14th, 2013 12:15 am (UTC)
...they were the last people you'd expect to be involved in something strange or mysterious, because they just didn't hold with such nonsense.

Why yes, I have accidentally memorized the first line, why do you ask?