Today In History: The End of A Wizarding Era
Today in history, in 2007 JK Rowling released the final book in her Harry Potter series, effectively ending an era. There’s an entire generation of young adults, whose entire childhood was filled with the magic and wonder of Harry Potter. My own cousins, now grown men of eighteen, grew up with wands in their hands. I remember them running around the backyard with sticks fighting Lord Voldemort. They’d wait in line for hours to get that next book and then stay up late trying to finish it. My aunt was convinced that they were expecting their Hogwarts letters. It was that much a part of their lives.
Children and adults alike were captivated by Harry, his friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger and their adventures at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The books, which chronicled Harry’s struggles against his enemy, the evil Lord Voldemort, have sold over 400 million copies and been translated into more than 60 languages. The series is also credited with boosting childhood literacy around the globe.
Rowling is single-handedly responsible for re-introducing the magic and wonder of reading to children. That generation, like the newer younger generations, had become so entrenched in their technical worlds, that they forgot what it was like to read a book. Being digital natives (generations born never knowing a time before computers) they couldn’t get through a book, it took too long. The thing with Harry Potter is that they wanted to get through it. The world owes her a huge bit of gratitude, for opening the pages of wonder to the children of the world again! I thank her because she reminded me what it was like to truly adore a book.