Monday, July 23, 2007


When my copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, which I’d pre-ordered on Amazon back in February, didn’t arrive first thing Saturday morning, I waited as patiently as the situation allowed.
I chewed an entire pack of gum.
I finally cleaned out my gym bag.
I avoided turning on the television or surfing the web for fear of discovering leaked spoilers.
I made myself a fancy portabella mushroom omelet with finely sliced onions and grated cheese.
I ate the omelet rather robotically and couldn’t tell you what it tasted like.
I flipped through last week’s The New Yorker.
I tried to take a nap.

I got up ten minutes later, finding that I could no longer bear the wait. So, off I went to my local ShopRite, where the books were being sold at the courtesy counter. When I made it back home, I sprinted (yes: sprinted) down the hallway to my apartment. Running in, I stripped out of my dress, threw on my pajamas and, turning my back on the remarkably beautiful Saturday outside, I climbed into bed with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

And I read.

I read this book just as I’d read the six that came before it: voraciously, compulsively, losing complete sense of time and space as the words, the pages, the book, everything, seemed to evaporate and I immediately fell headlong into the magical world of wizards and witches. I had learned a long time ago that any attempts to extract myself from this world for chores and conversations were fuitle. This weekend was all about the book.

So I read.

I read and read and read, taking only short breaks to hydrate or shove a handful of nuts into my mouth.

At times I wanted to slow down and savor this last adventure but this, too, was an exercise in futility—a lesson I’d learned from the book’s predecessors—and so I continued to read like a woman possessed.

I finally finished the book early on Sunday afternoon. My reading, my consumption of this final installment in the Harry Potter series was bittersweet--both utterly satisfying and utterly heartbreaking. Hats off to JK Rowling: not only has she firmly ensconced herself in the library of classic children and fantasy literature, but she allowed me to relive, that moment when I, as a little girl, first discovered the sheer, unadulterated magic of books. And that, my friends, is truly magical.


Richard said...

Here-here, Sabila!

I hate the snarky Harold Blooms of the world who complain that Rowling's style is bland or that this doesn't actually encourage kids to read. WTF? First, Rowling is no James Joyce, I mean -- she's a young adult author, and as young adult writers go, has a nice grasp of language, I think, both the lingua franca and the fantasy lexicon she conjures up. But her true gift is with the plot, the characters -- I mean, it's what kids, I should imagine, need in order to critically analyze the complicated world we're living in today -- Lucy from "Narnia" never had to deal with perfidious media outlets; Frodo had to deal with terrorism, but it was somehow different from the mass terror sweeping the land and controlling government and educational institutions like it does in the HP series. We are indeed living in a time when, as Dumbledore suggests, we must make a choice between what is easy and what is right.

And it all ended just as I expected and hoped for it to end. I thought it was perfect -- the entire series.

SabilaK said...

Is that you?

Anonymous said...

Richard...I thought Dumbledore was dead?? If he's not, and I find out he's alive when I start reading my copy, you're in for a world of pain for giving that away. I will hunt you down...

SabilaK said...

Yo Anonymous, Richard didn't give anything away. Dumbledore's been saying that for while.

bigkahuna said...

hmmm a few points for clarification:
1. You waited PATIENTLY? ;-)
2. You cooked? An omelet? The nerd and cooking have been classic joke fodder - when did you do this and how long have you been holding back on us????
3. Your gym bag. Now I realize the depth of a ladies purse are substantial - but what have you got in your gym bag? Medicine balls?

Glad to hear you enjoyed the book. You should hve been at the Potter-party at the local book store. Was *AMAZING*

Anonymous said...

This blog is my stopping point. And I have a question, damn what will it take for me to find a real man in real life? :(

Anonymous said...

movies ... masti ... magic

zee said...

did hariram putterjee die?

Richard said...

Dumbledore makes the "easy or right" speech I think in book four -- I heard someone quote him on NPR last week. So, simmer down, anonymous -- if that is your real name!

It's me, SK, your Maine man! Blogger is logging me in as "Richard" now.

Anonymous said...

Yes Richard, well done. Anonymous IS my real name.

And a comment on your 'original' post. YOU'RE the intellectual powerhouse that SabilaK is so impressed with? Man, she needs to circulate a bit more...

SabilaK said...

Holy CRAP! You anonymous commentors need to chill out. Seriously. This is JUST a blog. No one's challenging your manhood or whatever. Keep your testosterone in check, PLEASE.

Anonymous said...

What happened to the book you ordered from Amazon?