Did you know….about Harry Potter

Harry_Potter_and_the_Philosopher's_Stone_Book_CoverWell…who doesn’t know about Harry Potter, right?

Seriously though, did you know that Monday June 26th 2017 will mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone? That’s right, the series about the boy wizard is turning 20!

The book was author JK Rowling’s debut novel and was far from an overnight success. Indeed, Rowling began writing the novel in 1990 while riding on a train. According to an interview the author gave in 2009, the idea just hit her of a boy riding a train to wizard school. The death of her mother influenced much of the writing process.

The book was not well received by publishers and agents who felt that it was too long for a children’s book. That is, until Barry Cunningham of Bloomsbury recommended the publishers accept the book based on the recommendation of his eight-year-old daughter.

With seven books, eight films, a stage play and now a spin-off series of films, the rest, as they say, is history.

The library will be holding events from 10:00-1:00 this Saturday to celebrate the occasion so why not come along or maybe re-read the books, play or films.

BTW – Did you know that the books are actually set in the early-to-mid 1990s? You can work this out from information provided by Gryffindor ghost Nearly Headless Nick. In the Harry Potter and the Chamber of  Secrets, he celebrates his 500th ‘Death Day’ which occurred on October 31st, 1492, meaning that book takes place during 1992-1993!

Twenty years of Harry Potter

Work experience student Tiah is a Potterhead. She has seen all of the Harry Potter movies and continues to work her way through the books. Tiah has definite opinions on her favourite and least favourite characters – read on to see who they are. 

This year marks 20 years since the first Harry Potter book was published, so I thought ‘why not blog about it?’ My name is Tiah and I came to Tea Tree Gully Library for my Year 10 work experience for school. 

I am going to tell you about my favourite character Draco Malfoy. Now you may hate me for this, but I am also going to talk about my least favourite character Dolores Umbridge. I think most of us will definitely agree that she is one of the least favourite characters.

Draco Last Year

Draco Malfoy: my favourite character Image: Wikia

Yes in the first five movies and books, Draco is really mean to pretty much everyone at Hogwarts, but in the last three movies and two books you start to discover why he is that way. He doesn’t really have a choice on being nice to Harry and his friends, seeing as his parents are Death Eaters who serve Lord Voldemort. They killed his parents and are trying to kill Harry.

Honestly, I have not read all of the books yet, so I don’t know all that much (the books have more details than the movies) but Draco has always been one of my favourite characters. He is a siriusly misunderstood character (pun intended).

After realising he has been a jerk to everyone, Draco decides he does not want to raise his son, Scorpius, the way his parents raised him. He didn’t marry a Death Eater and he didn’t make his son believe everything his parents made him believe about muggle-borns and half-bloods.

Draco Year 1

Draco in his first year at Hogwarts – evil from an early age – yet still my favourite character Image: myharrypotterlovestory.wordpress.com

Even J.K. Rowling has a soft spot for Draco. She has said: “I do not discount the appeal of Tom Felton, who plays Draco brilliantly in the films and, ironically, is about the nicest person you could meet.” 

However Dolores Umbridge did have a choice on the way she behaved.
She is not a Death Eater, nor was anyone else in her family, with her father being her only other magic relation. She is just really rude to anyone who is not a pure blood. She didn’t let her students use spells for learning how to defend themselves during her class Defense Against The Dark Arts (aka DADA). Eventually in the end, after The Dark Lord’s final battle, Dolores was arrested, tried and sent to Azkaban for crimes against humanity.

Umbridge

Dolores was just plain rude. Image: thisgeekymommy.com

Stephen King told J.K Rowling, that he described Dolores Umbridge as  ‘the greatest make-believe villain to come along since Hannibal Lecter.’

Umbridge (2)

J.K. Rowling describes Dolores as ‘fat, short, ugly and toad-like’ in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Image: storyofcamelcow.wordpress.com

J.K. Rowling will always be one of my favourite authors and people in this world and if you didn’t know already, there is a website she has made about the wizarding world that is easy to use pottermore.com

You can find out everything about the characters, creatures and professors, discover your patronus, find out what house you’re in, what Ilvermorny house you’re in, find out what wand you would have, locations such as Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade Village, and there’s even things on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. You can also shop for J.K. Rowling’s books, ebooks and audiobooks on the website.

PS I think Tom Felton and Imelda Staunton were perfect for the roles of Draco and Dolores.

It’s school holidays!

There’s loads of Christmas decorating events, art/craft sessions, a kite building workshop, Lego Day, and a Harry Potter movie marathon in the mix. Don’t miss our pet-themed colouring-in competition either, you can win some prizes.

Find all these events + heaps more on our website.

Also check out what’s happening at Golden Grove Arts Centre, with their super cool SeaStar Rock event tomorrow! Original energetic fun music and dance for kids that promotes marine sustainability.

 

Travellers abound at Tea Tree Gully

With Winter now really behind us, it’s been interesting to hear some of the travel stories from our staff who choose to escape the cold for a few weeks for warmer climates.

Hp-Theme-Park-the-wizarding-world-of-harry-potter-13691411-600-450Sonya, no rookie when it comes to overseas travel, has visited six of the seven continents on this planet. On a recent US visit she visited The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, open now for four years. She says: I just went to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!  It’s at Universal Studios, Orlando Florida.  There’s a miniature sized snow topped Hogsmeade Village with all the favourite Harry Potter characters. The centrepiece is Hogwarts Castle and inside is a great simulator ride that has you on a roller coaster adventure with Harry, Ron and Hermione.  As you roam the village you can have lunch, (a hearty English fare) at the 3 Broomsticks,  and tuck in to some yummy butterbeer!  Actors roam the streets in robes and perform small skits for visitors. 

We have loads of travel books on the US, and also some of the states including Florida. And of course we carry the entire Harry Potter saga by JK Rowling.

From the first world to the third, Chris talks about his unscheduled, yet life changing stop in the African village of Mpumba.

mpumba kidsSitting beside me on the old rickety mini bus late at night was a young local girl and her friend. Eventually I spoke up, and introduced myself. We discussed the usual – of where I had been and where I was going.  I could see they were not sure of my ability to continue alone, and so Pamela, the one sitting closest to me asked if I would prefer to stay at their house for the night, and make my way to the hostel in town tomorrow during daylight. Chris took the offer and followed them back through their village to their house. He was introduced to the family, who were tobacco farmers. He continues: After an hour, Pamela returned, she brought out an impressive dinner. She has spent the last hour over a fire cooking away to feed us all. We sat in a circle, sharing this food, and I could not help but smile. I was invited into a home, fed, given a bed and treated as a life long friend and I had only just met them a few hours before on a bus in the middle of Africa. My friendship grew with this family and I stayed and worked with them for many days. Whether it was fetching water, working to the tobacco farms, helping to cook, I was treated as a true brother. They truly shared the pure kindness of a human being.

You can read the full story of Chris’ African family here. Check out our full range of travel books and DVDs on the catalogue, you may find ideas for your next adventure!

Stay tuned for further adventures of our travelling staff.

 

 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2

Are you counting down the number of sleeps until the upcoming epic fantasy film, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” is released in cinemas? Well, so is the City of Tea Tree Gully Library!

Join us on Monday, 18th July 2011 at Hoyts Cinema-Tea Tree Plaza at 6:30pm for a private showing of the final ‘Harry Potter’ movie, adapted from the book series by author JK Rowling.

“The end begins as Harry, Ron and Hermione go back to Hogwarts to find and destroy Voldemort’s final horcruxes, but when Voldemort finds out about their mission, their biggest battle begins and life as they know it will never be the same again.”

This movie is suitable for ages 12+ years. Parents please note, children under the age of 15 must be accompanied by an adult.

Bookings are essential. Tickets are only $10 and can be purchased at the Library Customer Service Desk.

For more information please call us on (08) 8397 7333 or visit the Library and while you’re here, check out our Harry Potter display.

Spotlight on: JK Rowling

JK RowlingJ K Rowling, best selling creator of the Harry Potter phenomenon completed her manuscript of ‘Harry Potter and the  Philosopher’s Stone on an old mechanical typewriter.  Her manuscript was rejected by twelve publishers before the relatively small publishing house Bloomsbury took it on, at the behest of the young daughter of the chairman. JK Rowling (Joanne Kathleen, although the Kathleen is not her real middle name, but her grandmother’s name) first conceived the Harry Potter story on a train in 1990, typing it up over the next five years and finally having it published in 1997. Five months later it won the Nestle Smarties Book Prize, an award she won for three years consecutively for the first three Harry Potter books. Over the next 10 years, Rowling completed her planned seven Harry Potter Books, the fourth book smashing world sales records, with each following book beating it’s predecessor in first day sales. 

JK Rowling is also known for her ‘rags-to-riches’ story, as she was a mature-age student surviving on welfare whilst studying to be a registered teacher in Scotland when she wrote Philosophers Stone. Ten years later she was the twelfth richest woman in Britain.

These holidays the Library is holding  Harry Potter at Hogwarts activities on July 10th, experimenting with potions and makign a potions textbook! For more information on the School Holiday program click here.

Harry Potter @ Hogwarts workshop

SnapeFriday July 10 is set to be a magic filled day as staff and students of Hogwarts descend upon the library for a day of potions and craft! Students can enrol in potions class or create their own potions textbook! There’s a sessions from 1.00pm to 2.00pm and another at 3.00pm to 4.00pm. Bookings are essential and are filling quickly so call the library on 8397 7333. You must have a library card to be able to book.  Come meet some of your favourite Harry Potter characters! There will also be self guided craft activities for all ages running throughout the day. Info on the school holiday program can be found here.