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Let your fan flag fly!

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This weekend, fans all over the world got to have an experience we thought we’d never have again: the anticipation of a new Harry Potter book. The release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: Parts One and Two, the script of the new London play of the same name, created all the excitement you […]

Hbook Podcast 1.18 – ALA and Harry Potter

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Podcast the eighteenth in which Roger and Siân talk ALA, Harry Potter, and committees. Book(s) we talk about J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter books (audio by Jim Dale) People we talk about Marcus Sedgwick Vicky Smith Victoria Stapleton, Director of School and Library Marketing, Little Brown Martha Parravano Frances Hardinge David Greenough Dan Santat Dina Sherman, […]

Potter’s Field Redux

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Thanks to Siân (recently) and Martha (several years ago), I am compulsively reading Harry Potter. Sian brought the guy up in a Horn Book podcast and awakened my curiosity; Martha had told me back in the day that Jim Dale’s audio edition is the perfect entrée to the books for those who are not among the […]

Was Jo March a Ravenclaw? Authors, Fans, and Who Makes the Rules

Little Women illustration by Barbara Cooney (1955). Scarf composite by Charlotte Reber and Lolly Robinson.

What are Harry Potter’s kids up to? Should Jo have married Professor Bhaer? Could Bella Swan have depended less on Edward? For many readers, part of being a fan is the desire to know more than what’s spelled out on the page. And when answers aren’t readily available, some readers are happy to create them […]

HBook Podcast 1.4 – Special Guest David Hyde Costello

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Podcast the fourth in which Siân makes guest author/illustrator David Hyde Costello take the Sorting Hat test, meets a hobgoblin, and manages to forget how many books are in the Harry Potter series (SEVEN books, Siân. Not eight!) Links David’s website Ezra Jack Keats New Writer honor Bank Street Center for Children’s Literature (under five […]

Harry Potter’s World, right on our doorstep

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As you may have surmised if you keep up with the Horn Book, there are quite a few Harry Potter fans among us. So when we saw that our host campus, Simmons College, had a Harry Potter exhibit in its Beatley Library, we knew we had to stop by. This traveling National Library of Medicine […]

HBook Podcast 1.2 – What House Are You?

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Podcast the second in which Roger and Siân talk about Harry Potter, jury duty, and Hufflepuff Pride. Warning: there are a few mildly annoying but not terrible crackles after the 18 minute mark (because someone—Siân—just HAD to sort Roger on her phone) Books we talk about: J. K. Rowling, The Cursed Child and the Harry […]

Always: remembering Alan Rickman

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Just a few days ago, the Goblin King passed. While Bowie the Artist never really had much of an impact on my life, Bowie the Goblin King certainly did. As a child, Labyrinth in equal parts delighted and terrified me. I watched it over and over, always hiding my face when the fire creature things […]

Hermione, headcanons, and kindred spirits

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Recently, the two-part what-happens-next-in-the-Wizarding-World play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child announced three key cast members: Jamie Parker as adult Harry, Paul Thornley as adult Ron, and Noma Dumezweni as adult Hermione. Congratulations to them all, and I hope the plays are as good as the books, and I really hope they make it to […]

Read good books, do good deeds

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Have you ever read a book and thought to yourself, “Man, I wish this could be real?” Well, unfortunately, no one I know has ever gotten an owl-delivered acceptance letter to Hogwarts, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a little bit of the Wizarding World out here for us muggles. One of the major […]