I’ve been following along as Mark Re-Reads the Harry Potter series and in his post today he discussed Hermione and what motivates her to be the insufferable know-it-all she was in the beginning.
This, along with the questions my husband has posed, has made me curious about Hermione.
J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter books (as if I really need to say who she is, ha!), gives us a pretty good background for both Harry and Ron but there’s very, very little about Hermione’s pre-Hogwarts childhood. We know she’s from an all-muggle family and that she is most likely an only child. But that’s all we really know. There’s never any mention of extended family, how she fared in her pre-magical education (although we can assume she excelled in probably everything) and if she ever had any friends before Hogwarts.
I was quite surprised when I saw the last movie that we actually got to see Hermione in the muggle world (and in one of the most heart-wrenching scenes offered by any of the films.) Hermione is never ‘seen’ in the muggle world in the books, ever. She writes from her holiday trips with her parents, but that’s the only clue we have about her non-magical life.
I find this rather odd. Rowling is so good about making the world of Harry Potter seem so real. There is so much detail in all aspects of her story-telling that I have to wonder if Hermione’s lack of a past was on purpose. Certainly it’s not really important overall, but it would have been nice to have some clue as to why Hermione was such a nosy, stickler-for-rules busybody. It’s almost as if Hermione was fully formed, on the spot the second she stepped onto the Hogwarts train.
On Rowling’s website she states that Hermione is a bit like her when she was younger. Perhaps Rowling didn’t give us a past for Hermione because it was too close to home. A world-famous author needs a little privacy I suppose.
Now what was it? I know it had something to do with one of my geek obsessions. I’m getting a book vibe, no! A movie vibe. Wait – both?!
Oh yeah, nothing big. Just part one of the last Harry Potter movie. As Ted Mosby would say, “Ain’t no thing but a chicken wing.”
Yeah, I know. Makes no sense.
But yeah, I was just reminded that today is November 19th and it struck me that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, part 1 comes out today and I actually gasped. (I’m such a dork).
I’ve seen all the movies in the theater except the first and I hope to finish them that way, but getting to the movies has proven difficult for us the past few years. There’s the cost, yes, but mostly it’s because we hate dealing with people. We won’t be happy going to the theater again until cell phones are banned inside the building and ushers actually kick assholes out. Don’t see that happening anytime soon so we just don’t go.
We missed Toy Story 3, The Expendables, Scott Prilgrim Versus the World. Hell, we’ve missed most everything for two years now. The last movie we saw in the theater was Iron Man 2 and before that, I think it was Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.
I’ve been re-reading the books. I haven’t been in a voracious reading mood lately so it’s going a little slow, which is good, actually. I’m processing more. Picking up on those little clues, names, etc. I’m on number four now, my least favorite of the series, but I’m enjoying it more this time than I ever have. I decided to re-read them because I’ve been following Mark Reads Harry Potter and I realized I remember so very little from Deathly Hallows. I’ve only read that one twice.
I can’t count how many times I’ve read the others, especially the first three. When I started with my current employer five years ago, all I did all day was scan documents. This was very boring so I listened to audio books. I don’t have many audio books – about ten – so I listened to them all many times. I had the first three Potter books (read by the spectacular Jim Dale) and I listened to them over and over. Never got bored with them. That’s really saying something.
J.K. Rowling may have her writing flaws – those pesky adverbs being one, but really, what writer doesn’t have that problem? – but her storytelling is off the chart. She also managed to create a hero that is so very human while still being a great HERO. Very rarely in these types of long stories is the main character my favorite character, but Harry is my favorite. He is very much a normal kid – average grades, typical pre-teen/teen hangups, all the flaws that come with that. But he rises above all that and does what he has to do to save the world, utilizing his strengths and having the intelligence and humility to turn to others for help when his own abilities aren’t enough.
Here’s to Harry Potter (via J.K. Rowling) – for changing the world for the better by teaching kids (and adults) about tolerance, true friendship and the importance of standing up for what you think is right.
The Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince trailer is now online! It’s pretty damn spooky. If I didn’t know better, I would have thought it was a trailer for a horror movie. Steak sauce!
Embedded video removed – it messed up my template.
CLICK HERE to see the video. (Don’t worry – it’s just puppets)
I am done…and now I sleep.
My book is here. I will be pretty much unavailable until Monday.
Turns out there was one of those Diagon Alley parties in Portland, Maine last night. I didn’t know about it. Oh, how you’ve failed me MuggleNet! (Just kidding 🙂 )
Well, tomorrow is the day. For some of you, less than 5 hours. For me, it has to wait until tomorrow. My husband knows when the UPS guys normally delivers, but he refuses to tell me. I might be refusin’ later too, if you know what I mean. Hmph.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – Year 6 at Hogwarts
Gee, I better stop here or I’ll be posting all night. Well, it would make the hours go by quicker…
Less than two days from now, I will have the newest Harry Potter book in these here hands…and if the husband tries to sneak it away, it’ll be upside his head in a flash. 🙂
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – Year 5 at Hogwarts
Will Doloros Umbridge ever get what she deserves? By sending the dementors after Harry, she was guilty of attempted murder. She still works at the ministry. What the hell is up with that?
What did Dudley see when the Dementors were making him relive his worst memory? Was it that time when he thought he was getting less presents for his birthday than the year before? Oh, poor Dudders. :p
What is the purpose of the Department of Mysteries? To hide the truth from the wizarding community, or protect it?
Who did Luna Lovegood see die?
Will Neville Longbottom’s parents ever get better?
Will Gilderoy Lockhart ever regain all of his memory?
Is Snape good enough at Occlumency to keep Voldemort out?
Will Snape ever let go of the past and realize that the sins of the father should not be passed on to the son?
What is the ‘Veil’ that Sirius fell through and what were the voices that some people could hear? Some of the adults who told Harry that Sirius was dead seemed to know more about it than they would tell.
Is Sirius really dead?
That’s all for tonight. Tomorrow night, the 6th book and then Saturday, the beginning of the end. Whee!!
Since I missed last night’s post, I’ll do both the third and fourth HP book questions tonight. So, let’s get on with it.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – Year Three at Hogwarts
Well, um, that’s all I can think of for Book Three, believe it or not. So, on to
Fewer questions than I thought, but there’s still two more books. See ya tomorrow night!