Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Re-reading Harry Potter and other Chatter

This morning in the coffee shop the young woman who was waiting on me was reading a Harry Potter book. Just to make conversation (the shop was empty) I asked her which one she was reading and she showed me: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. "I'm re-reading all of them before the new one comes out. It's amazing what you pick up when you re-read them; all kinds of clues are hidden in them, things that weren't obvious the first time through," she said.

Are other people (other adults, I mean) doing this? Do I need to do this? It would seriously cut into my other reading time. I remember all the high points in the books, but I'm sure that I too would pick up clues that weren't obvious to me when I first read them. I can't decide.

I think I'm not going to do it. But if anyone is, or has already, let me know.

On other reading fronts, I have abandoned the audiobook version of The Bonesetter's Daughter, by Amy Tan. I wasn't enjoying listening to it and decided that I might like it better if I just read it, so I found a paperback copy and have been finishing it up. I should be done in a few days. I am also reading Blackbird House by Alice Hoffman, which is a series of connected short stories, and I'm liking that a lot. For my audiobook I've begun listening to 44 Scotland Street, by Alexander McCall Smith, which is great. I keep giggling out loud as I walk to work, eliciting strange looks from passers-by.


Anonymous said...

Yes, I raced through Harry Potter and the HBP when it came out, then a few months (maybe more) later we listened to it on audio while driving across France last summer. Not only did it make "les kms" speed by, but it was wonderful how much we all got out of the book, as we had all read it in book form, and we all had to listen to the wonderful but slow narration by Stephen Fry. All our theories about Dumbledore not really being dead were shot out from under our feet. But more to the point, it was so moving - an element that was really rather missed while galloping through on first read to find out what happened. Three out of the four of use were in tears in several places. Even the HP sceptic among us was swayed somewhat.

JKR puts in so much detail which you need to try to work out the plots, that it is worth reading twice. We have many a conversation about those darn horocruxes and who R. B. is, etc. All to be revealed on 21 July, one trusts.

Anonymous said...

Every summer, I reread all of Harry Potter. There comes a point where Steve says, "Harry Potter AGAIN? How can you reread them all over and over."

The answer is, quite easily. However, I don't read them for clues. And really, there's nothing better than back to back Harry Potter.

Becky Holmes said...

We also listened to the audiobook versions during car trips, but I think we never got farther than the fourth book. The American versions are read by Jim Dale, who is wonderful also, though I'd be curious to listen to Stephen Fry. Maybe, since I've read, listened to, and seen the films of 1-4, I should just start my re-reading with Order of the Phoenix.

Becky Holmes said...

Wait, I have to add "read aloud" to my list of ways I've experienced volumes 1-4. My youngest was too young to read these on his own when they first came out.

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