Nowadays there is probably no one over the age of 25 who does not know or has never heard of the Harry Potter saga, both the books and the movies.
The “Potter” phenomenon created by J.K Rowling more than 20 years ago revolutionized the fantastic literary genre in every way, turning all her followers into true reading addicts and a cultural reference that is still growing today.
Although the success of this story and the magical world that surrounds it was indisputable, there are still many people who ask themselves the same question.
Should you read Harry Potter?
Most people should read Harry Potter. It is more than a book of adventure and fantasy, it is a gift that the author makes us to learn to better understand the world around us, emotions and human relationships, no matter how old you are.
Below, to help all those undecided to decide whether or not the magical Harry Potter saga is really worth reading, we are going to answer a series of key questions that will provide you with enough information and perspective to know what to do.
Want to know if it’s really worth it to be a Harry Potter fan?
Why everyone should read Harry Potter?
The answer to this question could take days, as there are so many reasons why a person should read this saga of books and so extensive that it is very difficult to stay with only one, however I will try to make a general summary of the reasons why everyone should read at least once in life the adventures of Harry Potter:
- The language that the author uses throughout all the books (especially in the first 3) is very simple while containing a very rich and varied lexicon, which is very beneficial for children between 9 and 12 years old who are in full development of their language and need to improve their vocabulary and syntax.
- It is an enjoyable read. If there is one thing that all Harry Potter fans agree on, it is that the books are quick to read, almost “easy to devour” because they are so entertaining and the narrative is so brilliant.
- Harry Potter not only tells stories of magic and dragons, but also presents some of the most important life lessons that anyone should know (no matter their age): loyalty among friends, the bonds of affection that begin to be made in high school, the importance of effort and study, the idea that love is always more powerful than hate, the presentation of people as imperfect beings who possess light and darkness in equal parts, etc.
- Entertainment will be assured, no matter how old you are. A good reason that cannot be ignored is that Harry Potter has an incredible plot, with a very complex plot and characters that will make us empathize and will transport us to a parallel world through its pages.
- This story will also introduce us in an elegant way to controversial topics such as feminism and gender equality, through very strong female characters like Hermione or Professor McGonagall. Not just any magic book is able to make us reflect on these issues, so it is important to value it.
- It presents us with a society similar to the one we have today, although adapting everything to a magical world and a very different context: pure-blooded wizards who would come to represent the current aristocracy, half-bloods and muggles. These last two groups (which are discriminated by the magical society because of their origin) would come to represent the working class and the current middle class that fights tirelessly for equal opportunities in life.
These are some of the many reasons why “everyone should read Harry Potter, however if after reading this list of reasons you are still not convinced, nothing will happen.
After all, this is my opinion, one among many, and it will have the same value as that of someone opposed to this saga. However, I hope I have convinced you a little more so that you will definitely believe that reading this saga is something worth doing.
Why Harry Potter isn’t for everyone (maybe not for you)?
Although it is a literary saga loved by millions of people, there is also a large group that declares itself totally against it and openly defends its arguments against those who qualify it as “the best juvenile story of all times”.
This makes me rethink the initial question and ask a very different one that may give a broader perspective of what Harry Potter really means nowadays: Why Harry Potter isn’t for everyone ?
Does a saga have to be liked by everyone just because it is a worldwide success? No, of course not, there will always be those who don’t like it and those who prefer another genre of novels and stories for young people to entertain their children or themselves.
The main reason why someone may not like Harry Potter is because they end up hating the protagonist himself and cannot empathize with him or his story.
In fact there are many who have said that Harry’s character is really tedious, because the whole plot, from beginning to end, revolves around him and does not let other characters shine. Which is true, however if you manage to connect with the character and understand his position you won’t find him as hateful as they say.
Aside from this, the next reason why it might not be a good idea to read Harry Potter is because of its fantasy. Do you consider yourself a wildly realistic person? Are you a scientist or engineer who likes to look for the logic behind everything that happens? Then Harry Potter is not for you.
J.K Rowling’s magical world is full of beings and events that have no place in the real world and that is part of its charm. However, if this kind of fantasy genre is not your thing and you like to read more realistic novels with empirically demonstrable facts, you should definitely not read it because it will not make you fall in love with it.
Is Harry Potter easy to read?
Of course, this is one of the main reasons why it is recommended to read this story. The author gives us a collection of books, which despite being much denser than a standard young adult novel, are tremendously easy to read and understand.
The Harry Potter narrative has been described as a true marvel, which is why it has won so many awards and millions of people keep coming back to it. Harry Potter is easy to read? Yes, it will definitely be one of the fastest novels you can read, no doubt about it.
Is it better to read Harry Potter or watch the movie?
The answer to this question has generated more than one controversy among the most loyal followers of the saga, however my opinion on the matter is very clear: the books are far superior to their movie adaptations. This does not mean that the movies are bad, but simply that they cannot compare to the quality and depth that each of the books contain.
It is logical that the movies cannot contain the amount of narrative details that are presented in the book, since it is a format limited by hours and its mission is to successfully summarize what is contained in a novel of up to 600 pages. A complicated mission, of course.
However, as good as the eight movies that were made from the saga may seem, the books will always be better. Besides, if you really want to have complete knowledge of the story and its characters, I recommend that you read all the books first and then watch the movies. This way you will know everything that is missing and you will be able to better appreciate both formats.
In which order should you read Harry Potter?
Harry Potter is not Star Wars, that is, the story does not go back and forth in time to introduce us to the characters, so the best way to read the story is to start from the beginning and read all the titles in their original order.
Does this mean that we can’t read any book out of order? No, we can always reread any of the volumes of the collection separately if we wish, however if it is the first time we read it, it is not convenient to do that, since we would get confused and we would miss information present in other installments.
The best way to read Harry Potter for the first time is from the beginning, one by one. It is the best way to understand the whole story and to understand the evolution of the plot and all its characters.
Below is an ordered list of all the books:
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Is reading Harry Potter ok if I’m an adult?
Of course it is, in fact I am an adult and I still read these books from time to time.
This is one of the main reasons for its worldwide success, Harry Potter is a literary saga that both children and adults fall in love with, being many times the parents themselves the ones who already start giving their old copies to their children to read them.
In conclusion, the literary saga that more than 20 years ago became a worldwide phenomenon with the release of its first film adaptation is possibly the best thing you will ever read in your life as a reader. I hope that by answering all these questions I have managed to convince you of this and that you decide to enter the magical world of Harry and his friends.
You won’t regret it!