This September, we celebrate twenty years of the stories about The Boy Who Lived, Harry Potter.
In 1990, J.K. Rowling boarded a train from Manchester to London King’s Cross. The train was delayed, and in that time, she thought up the idea of Harry Potter, and the stories that would inspire millions of children and adults for years to come. The first installment of the Harry Potter series arrived in the United States in 1998, and now, twenty years later, the series has become part of our modern mythos, much as C.S. Lewis’s Narnia books were for children the generation before.
While the thematic depth of the books challenges and inspires audiences young and old, the setting of the books—an entire magical world, existing right beneath our noses—captures our imaginations. What child would not want to wake up to discover that they were in fact a witch or wizard, endowed with magical potential they’d never dreamed of? Who would not want to go to school at Hogwarts, where secrets and magic lurked in every nook and cranny of the hallowed halls? Who would not like to grab their broom and fly off to the Quidditch pitch to chase the Golden Snitch?
There is something special about being read to. Listening to the words of grand stories like those of the Harry Potter series harkens back to memories of childhood when we were read to, perhaps by our parents in our beds, or by our teachers at school. There is a performance involved in a reading, the words are invested with a new character, the sentences take a new shape. Even books we’ve already read can to us appear new, more nuanced.
Join us in celebrating the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone by purchasing one of the Wizarding World™ audiobooks from Libro.fm, which supports your local, independent bookstore!
Many of our bookstore partners will be hosting anniversary events… find your local indie bookstore and join the celebration!