Yesterday I read in Reason that apparently the new Pope has in the past shown support for the anti-Harry Potter crowd, which is gearing itself up in anticipation of the new Harry Potter book release tomorrow. He apparently wrote:
It is good, that you enlighten people about Harry Potter, because those are
subtle seductions, which act unnoticed and by this deeply distort Christianity
in the soul, before it can grow properly.
Here is my whole take on the anti-Harry crowd: Get a life. From a values point of view, what is it about Harry that you wouldn't want your child to emulate? And as for the magic stuff - OK, get ready for this - its...made up. Yes, it is a fantasy, it is not real. There is no danger of your child suddenly running off and casting spells.
And here is my take on the Potter books as a whole: Awesome. Forget that I personally have enjoyed reading every one of them. Consider that my 11-year-old boy has been waiting for weeks, not for a computer game or movie to come out, but for a book. Likely a loooonnnggg book. And this weekend, no matter what the weather or what is on TV, he will be glued to a couch from dawn to dusk reading. Do you remember being so excited about reading anything at 11, other than the new issue of Spiderman?
By the way, its your last chance to place a bet on which major character buys it in this book, though Dumbledore is the runaway favorite (the logic being that in the story archetype that Rowling seems to be following, the young hero must face the final battle without his mentor - so Dumbledore needs to go before the 7th and last book).
Update: At noon, Boston time my son crossed over page 310. I am not sure I read that fast.
Update #2: OK, its about 4:00 Eastern on Saturday and he is done. You can tell that we struggle to keep this kid in books (this week he has read Harry Potter, the DaVinci Code, and a Clive Cussler book). I will try to get him to write a review for the blog. I threatened that I would tie him up naked in the middle of his school's cafeteria if he gave me any spoilers, but I will say that he was very, very depressed at the end.