I don’t write book reviews, remember?
I woke up this morning and thought about writing a blog post about the Harry Potter books.
I heard the name “Harry Potter” for the first time in the year 1999. It was my first year as a college student in the USA. I told my adviser that I was interested in children’s literature. So she told me to read this book called Harry Potter. That was the first time I heard the name Harry Potter. And it meant absolutely nothing to me. It was just a name. A boy’s name. That was it. So I didn’t go find the book and read it like my adviser suggested.
I think it was later that year or maybe early in 2000 that I actually touched the book Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. A friend of mine was reading it (She was from Costa Rica). I remembered that it was the one my adviser was talking about so I asked her if it was any good. She said she liked it a lot, and she lent it to me after she was done.
I still remember that I started reading it in the storage in the basement in my dorm. I worked at the reception desk in my dorm, and at the end of the school year I had to also work in the storage because people had to move out of the dorm and needed to keep some stuff in storage. So I was sitting there at the desk in the storage, reading the first Harry Potter book. I got through a few pages, but it didn’t interest me. So I gave to book back to my friend and forgot all about it.
That summer I was staying with my host family in St. Paul, Minnesota. One day my host sister took me to her boyfriend’s house. We stayed there for a really long time, late into the night (more maybe the next morning). I was really bored. I remember I was sitting alone in the living room and my sister and her boyfriend was somewhere else when I started reading this book. It’s the first Harry Potter book belonged to my host sister’s boyfriend. This time I had to read past the first few pages because I had to wait for my host sister for a really long time. And at one point I couldn’t put it down. I took the book home with me (with permission, of course) when my host sister and I left.
Reading the book was magical. I remember sitting outside somewhere in Minneapolis and reading it out loud to my host sister (she started reading it after I was done with it).
My host family bought me the second, the third, and the fourth book. The fourth book actually came out that summer. I watched the news about it on tv. I read articles about it in newspapers and magazines.
I came back to the college in the fall with my three Harry Potter books (I didn’t buy the first one), and I reread them throughout the school year.
I bought the fifth book when I came back to Thailand. I was working as an English teacher at this school when the book came out. My students were excited about it. I went to buy the book after work on Friday. I spent the night at my friend’s house (she also bought the book). Oh, and it was my first UK version (the US version was sold out). We read late into the night. I woke up early the next morning and took the bus home. I read all day and most of the night on Saturday and Sunday. I was determined to finish it before Monday morning when I had to go back to work. My cousin came to see me on Saturday or Sunday (I think it was Sunday). And he said I looked like hell. I told him I hadn’t been sleeping because I was reading the new Harry Potter book.
I finally finished reading at about 2am on Monday. I had a little bit of sleep. And then I woke up and went to work.
I told myself I would not do something like that again. I was reading too fast. I was focusing on finishing the book on time that I didn’t enjoy it fully.
However, I did cry when Sirius died. He was my favorite character.
I bought the sixth book in the Republic of Ireland. The UK version. I read it there and on the plane back to the US. I finished reading it in the US and gave the book to one of my American friends. It was living in Ohio at the time, but I had to move again so I couldn’t keep most of my books.
I bought the seventh book in Texas. It was my second day in Lubbock, Texas. I was about to start my PhD program at Texas Tech University. This nice girl took me grocery shopping. And at the grocery store I saw piles and piles of the orange Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows books, so I grabbed one.
The international students who were TAs had to be on campus for some training about 2 weeks before school started, and we were all put in this one dorm. It was a fun time actually. It was nice being back in school and living in a dorm room with a roommate.
But I needed my alone time and a quiet place to read my Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. So I went to the study room everyday with my gigantic Harry Potter book. Everybody thought I was studying. It was kinda fun when I told them that I wasn’t studying; I was reading Harry Potter.
I was moving around a lot so I didn’t get to keep any of my Harry Potter books. But it was a lot of fun reading them.