Book Review: Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter 1

So book number 37 in my Goodreads Reading Challenge (and book number 5 of my holiday reads) is the wonderful Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone by J.K. Rowling.

‘Harry Potter has never even heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry’s eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin!’ (Thanks Amazon!)

So it has been 20 years since this book first hit the shelves and what a 20 years it’s been!  I wrote a little blog (see here) back in June on the anniversary of this novel being published, and it made me realise that it has been too long since I have read this series.  For the publishing world, for children fiction, for fans across the world, Harry Potter has proved to be a life changing experience.  J.K. Rowling found herself securely placed amongst the greats of children fiction: Enid Blyton, Roald Dahl to name just a couple.  However, Harry Potter achieved something else…it wasn’t only children wanting to read her novels full of witchcraft and wizardry.  Those people queuing at midnight for the release of the next book weren’t just parents hoping to please their children when they woke up.  Those queues were full of people of all ages, hoping to get their hands on a copy for themselves.  I was one of those people.  I remember my (now) husband driving me to our closest supermarket on our way home from a night out just so that I could grab a copy, which I promptly devoured and finished before the sun came up.  At the time I felt a little geeky (nothing new there!) but now I feel proud to be part of the Harry Potter generation.  What makes me feel even prouder though is watching my 10 year old son feast on this series…he can’t get enough and I love his enthusiasm.  We have many an animated discussion these days about everything Harry Potter!

So, back to my review.  There is actually very little I can say that you won’t think for yourself or have read elsewhere.  This is the start of an iconic series that I truly believe everyone should read (I have friends that have not read this series…I’m looking at you!!). Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone left me desperately wanting my Hogwarts letter as it introduced me to a whole new world, full of interesting people (good and bad), magical creatures and amazing adventures.  I look forward to picking up Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets soon!

Rating: 📖 📖 📖 📖 📖

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