Yes, it’s true. I’m one of the few people who managed to stay away from the Harry Potter mania that swept through the U.S. (and other parts of the world, I’m sure) a few years back. I didn’t read the books. I didn’t see the movies. I didn’t buy any of the abundant merchandise. Yet in my pursuit of discovering what makes some books sell in the millions while others sell only a handful copies, I realized I was doing myself a huge disservice by  not reading the books our nation embraced and turned into a phenomenon.

With that in mind, I decided it’s about time I read some of the wildly popular books I haven’t picked up (although Fifty Shades of Grey is one I will never read). I decided to start with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

Honestly, I expected to be bored out of my skull and have to force myself to finish the book. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The writing pulled me in from the beginning and kept me interested until the very end. Rarely have I seen characters whose personalities are so clearly defined in just a few lines and shown in such a vivid manner for the entire book. I particularly enjoyed the ghosts (especially Peeves), each of whom has a unique personality, just like the living characters. Despite the serious events of the book, there was enough humor to make it fun to read. And the twist in the story… totally didn’t see that coming, but it worked perfectly. Well done, Ms. Rowling.

I must admit to experiencing a bit of disappointment, however. The beginning of the book, with its focus on clothing and behavior when describing people, gave me hop there would be a lovely mix of ethnicities and races at Hogwarts. Instead, the paleness of the student body is explicitly mentioned, although there is a token black student who appears during the first meal at the school and is never mentioned again. All things considered, this was a minor disappointment in an otherwise engaging book.

So, now that I’ve read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, and enjoyed it more than I imagined possible, it’s time to choose the next wildly popular book to read. Should it be Twilight? The Hunger Games? What do you  lovely readers recommend?

  1. egb63 says:

    Hunger games. I did read Twilight andIf you can figure out why that one was so poplular…

  2. Jeyna Grace says:

    Hunger games. Twilight is something I will never read, as well as Fifty shades.

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