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Happy birthday, J. K. Rowling

31 Jul


She is 7 months younger than me and a lot richer. That’s okay, though. We each have our own path to tread in this world and our job is to walk it well.

Ten days ago, J. K. Rowling, it was announced that two new books would be added to the Harry Potter canon. Harry Potter UK publisher, Bloomsbury and the British Library are creating two  books to accompany this autumn’s exhibition Harry Potter: A History of Magic at the library in London,  to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the publication of the first book.

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From J.K. Rowling’s Website: Harry Potter: A History of Magic will be the official book of the British Library’s exhibition.

A collaboration between Bloomsbury and the brilliant curators of the British Library, the book promises to take readers on a fascinating journey through the subjects studied at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry – from Alchemy and Potions classes through to Herbology and Care of Magical Creatures.

Each chapter showcases a treasure trove of artefacts from the British Library and other collections around the world, beside exclusive manuscripts, sketches and illustrations from the Harry Potter archive. There’s also a specially commissioned essay for each subject area by an expert, writer or cultural commentator, inspired by the contents of the exhibition including Steve Backshall, the Reverend Richard Coles, Owen Davies, Julia Eccleshare, Roger Highfield, Steve Kloves, Lucy Mangan, Anna Pavord and Tim Peake, who offer a personal perspective on their magical theme.

Readers will be able to pore over ancient spell books, amazing illuminated scrolls that reveal the secret of the Elixir of Life, vials of dragon’s blood, mandrake roots, painted centaurs and a genuine witch’s broomstick, in a book that shows J.K. Rowling’s magical inventions alongside their cultural and historical forebears.

Harry Potter: A Journey Through a History of Magic is a family edition of the first book, geared at younger readers.

I will honestly admit that I did not read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.  I see it as sort of semi-canonical. Yes, Rowling was in on the original idea, but she was not really part of the writing. And, I don;t want to see Harry as a haggard middle-aged dad.  I see enough of those in my real life.

Although I did not read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, I am curious to see these two books. Both books will publish in the UK on 20th October 2017 when the British Library exhibition opens its doors to visitors in London. I have no idea when they will publish this side of the pond.


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