The Great Harry Potter Re-Read

Harry Potter ReRead 1
Howdy readers! I’m embarking on a super exciting project that I have been wanting to do for a long time… re-read all of the Harry Potter books in a row! We all know HP is pretty much the greatest thing ever, but it’s been a few years since I’ve fully read any of the books, and I don’t think I have ever read the whole series straight through since the seventh book came out. I’ve been craving a big re-read for months, but I haven’t had time because of review obligations. But it just so happens that after finishing We Are Water last week, I don’t have to read ANYTHING for review until January! (Actually, I do have one book, but it will only take a few hours to read.)

I’m super excited to take advantage of this two-month review lull and re-read a series that is very near and dear to my heart. I first read Sorcerer’s Stone when I was 9, and Deathly Hallows came out when I was 17. I’ve always felt that I was the perfect age for these books as they came out, and I love that I really did grow up with Harry.

A few facts about HP and me:

  1. My aunt bought me Sorcerer’s Stone for my ninth birthday, in 1999. She’s a big reader, and she wanted to buy me a book for my birthday. She took me to a bookstore and let me pick any book I wanted (I chose a Mary Kate and Ashley mystery, so you know I had awesome taste at that age), and she also insisted on buying me this book called Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone because she worked in a school and had heard really great things about it. I was all, “Ew, why would I want to read a book about a boy wizard?” But I humored her and eventually read it a few months later. I pronounced all the names wrong, but I fell head-over heals in love.
  2. When I was younger, I loved reading, but I had very narrow tastes. This meant I read a lot, but I basically just read the same books over and over. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve read the first few books in this series; I tried counting for a while, but I lost track after my seventh read of Prisoner of Azkaban when I was probably about 11 or 12.
  3. I shared my Harry Potter books with my sister, a similarly ravenous reader of the series. As an effect of our combined obsession, our copies of Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire are in literal pieces. The dust jackets are torn, the spines are broken, and chunks of pages have come unglued from the bindings.
  4. My sister and I were also total dorks and played Harry Potter games a lot. We would write out our Hogwarts letters and supply lists, make up class schedules, “borrow” the fancy cloth-bound classics from the bookshelf downstairs to be our textbooks, and steal chopsticks from the kitchen for wands. They were pretty elaborate games, yo. But JKR created a pretty elaborate world that was just TOO IRRESISTIBLE.
  5. I went to the midnight release party of Deathly Hallows. It was magical and exciting, and I stayed up all night reading. My parents were not happy about this the next morning.
  6. Although I haven’t fully read any of the books in a few years, they’re the books I turn to when I need comfort. When I’m stressed or upset, it feels really good to pick one of my favorites and just read a few chapters.
  7. My mom promised to get me a new set of hardbacks for my college graduation, and she finally made good on her promise when I graduated from college. I now have a nice set of like-new books on my shelves — except for the first book, the one that has “Leah Mosher, May 1999” written by my aunt on the first page, the one I have loved and read countless times in 14 years. I will never let go of my original copy of Sorcerer’s Stone, the one book I love as much at 23 as I did in fourth grade.

(Of course it had to be seven facts. Ha!)

So, my plan is a simple one. Just to read all of the books in a row. I’m really looking forward to totally immersing myself in the magical world J.K. Rowling created over the next few months. (I actually started this project early and read Sorcerer’s Stone on Wednesday. I had to be super careful not to break my book, the binding of which is starting to fail, but it felt SO GOOD.) I also plan to watch the corresponding movies when I finish each book! They’re not the greatest, but they’re fun. I will also be blogging about my journey with Harry and the gang!

Have any of you taken on a big reading project like this?


33 thoughts on “The Great Harry Potter Re-Read

  1. Aww, have fun with this! I feel the same way about these books — there’s really something special about having grown up with a series. I work in a library now, and I keep trying to convince my boss to let me throw a “Harry Potter” party for the kids (really for myself, but I would invite the kids to make it kosher…) Everyone wants to pretend that they go to Hogwarts, right? 😉

  2. I love that you and your sister played Harry Potter games when you were younger! These books had such a massive impact on so many kids! Who are we kidding, on adults as well. They really do stand the test of time! I wonder if the books will mean something different to you now that you are an adult reading the books rather than when you were a contemporary of Harry’s?

  3. Re: “I’ve always felt that I was the perfect age for these books as they came out, and I love that I really did grow up with Harry.” Interestingly, while I’m older than you are, I also identify with Harry because he was born one year earlier than I was. So, his muggle world is one I recognize (one without cell phones and other modern technology). Enjoy your revisit with the series! I re-read it when I was on a maternity leave two years ago. It was fun.

    • I’ve seen some of the read-alongs too, but I’m enjoying reading at my own pace. It’s nice that I can tear through a book in a day if I want to 😛

  4. This project sounds interesting. Such a great idea! I would like to, but I don’t know if I could have time to join you on this adventure. I’ll for sure have this project on my list. It sounds so much fun!

  5. Awwww! Your HP stories are so sweet! I was in college when HP became all the rage, and I ADORED it. I always wondered what it would have been like to get to enjoy it as a child. Guess I’ll just have to have kids and read the books to them 🙂

  6. I want to reread these at some point, too. I was going to do it this year, but then I got into Diane Duane’s Young Wizard series and fell in love with it. I’m still working on those, so I’ll probably try to reread HP next year sometime.

  7. I did that last year! they’re just as awesome the umpteenth time round and I think it’s probably only the second time I’d read them all the way through in order. I was a bit older than you when I started reading them (I was also late to the party, I only started getting interested when the fourth one was about to be published (as a result I have the first three books in paperback and the last four in hardback, a fact that greatly upsets me because I like my series to match). I remember when the fifth one came out a friend and I both grabbed a copy on the release day and went to sit in the park while we read it. Some guys tried to chat us up but we were far more interested in our books!!

    • Yes! So far I’m thrilled by how well they hold up. Aw, that sounds like a really nice memory! I just remember sitting on my bed eating m&ms and reading all day when the fifth book came out 😛

  8. Sounds like fun! I’m sure I’ll reread the whole series someday, but I have too many other books planned at the moment. I kinda wish these books had come out when I was your age–I’m sure my best friend and I would have played similar Harry-Potter games that you played with your sister. Ah for simpler times. Have fun!

    • Not only were we Harry’s age, but I always felt like the maturity levels of the books matched perfectly. As we got older, the books got darker and more serious, less like childrens’ books!

  9. Ahem… Our HP stories look SOOO similar that it slightly freaked me out 🙂 Even the timeline is the same, because we are the same age 🙂 The only difference is that for me it was a BF instead of a sister, as my sibling is hopelessly male and unenthusiastic about these wonderful books 🙂
    I’m now in the process of re-reading all HP in Spanish (for the sake of practice), which is going rather slowly, but going 🙂 Who knows, maybe after that I’ll switch to good old English again.
    Have fun with your re-reading, as I’m sure you will! 🙂

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