We’ve got got that book or those books that we keep coming back to. It’s the book(s) you display proudly for guests to see, the ones displayed, not packed into the bookshelf. They’re the books that made you love books. They’re the books you’ll read over and over again.
For me, Harry Potter takes the award of Favorite Book. Yeah, yeah, I know, that’s not an original answer. It’s my answer anyway.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was the first book I read cover to cover. At the time, my reading skills weren’t that great. I actually had to start over because I had no idea what was going on. This happened after the first book’s movie had come out. Mom had taken me to see it. I loved it.
I read the first book after I read the second book. Guess what? I loved it, too. Since then, I’ve read the first three books so many times that my editions are falling apart. One wrong page-turn and Prisoner of Azkaban is in two parts.
I started reading the first book again, and it still fills me with such a sense of wonder. I want to write something as enthralling and magical – not in the sense of wizards, but in the sense that the book itself, the story, the characters, all combine into this grand adventure. It’s that feeling when you loose yourself in a book and forget you’re reading. You forget the world around you; you’re immersed. It’s the magic of a story.
I want to write a story so engrossing and wonderful that readers forget they’re reading.
But, back to Harry Potter – I love how this Young Adult book has entranced people of all ages, not just kids. It’s proof that it’s possible to write a Young Adult book with an eleven-year-old protagonist and make it enjoyable for all ages. J. K. Rowling has that way with words. She can bring the characters to life, but at the same time string the story together with an adult’s narration. It’s part of what makes the Harry Potter series so great. (If it read like an 11-year-old was telling it, no one over the age of 12 could stand to read it.)
There’s foreshadowing, too. I’d never noticed before, but in the beginning when Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon are trying to keep Harry from getting his letters, Uncle Vernon is the one spearheading the program – Aunt Petunia’s behind him kindly suggesting that his attempts won’t work. She knows they’re not going to work, because she knows how the magic folk work. She knows this, and yet she doesn’t try to stop her husband. Her character is an under-appreciate one. As we learn in The Cursed Child, Aunt Petunia kept the blanket that Harry came bundled in the night Dumbledore left him on the Durlsey’s doorstep; she has a sweet, sentimental side that she has pushed down. She loves Harry, but she’s let her bitterness and jealousy toward her sister take control of her senses.
None of this was given in the books themselves – I’ve pieced it together from her words and actions. That’s another reason I Love J. K. Rowling’s works; she can write a character like no one else. She worked so much personality and history into Aunt Petunia, a character we weren’t supposed to like. It wasn’t until I was older that I picked up on that.
She wrote in so many strings in her books, some thicker than others, some little nods – I want to be able to write like that, but at the same time, I want to write like me.
What’s your favorite book? Why?