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Harry Potter

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article is about the novel series. For the eponymous character, see Harry Potter (character). For
the film series, see Harry Potter (film series). For related topics, see List of Harry Potter related topics.
For other uses, see Harry Potter (disambiguation).

Harry Potter

The Harry Potter logo was first used for the American edition of the
novel series (and some other editions worldwide), and then the film

1. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows


J. K. Rowling


United Kingdom




Fantasy, young-adult
fiction,mystery, thriller, bildungsroman,magical


Bloomsbury Publishing (UK)

Arthur A. Levine Books (US)


29 June 1997 21 July 2007 (initial publication)

Media type

Print (hardback & paperback)

E-book (as of March 2012)[1]

No. of books

Harry Potter is a series of seven fantasy novels written by the British author J. K. Rowling. The series
chronicles the adventures of a young wizard, Harry Potter, the titular character, and his friends Ronald
Weasley and Hermione Granger, all of whom are students atHogwarts School of Witchcraft and
Wizardry. The main story arc concerns Harry's quest to overcome the Dark wizard Lord Voldemort, who
aims to become immortal, conquer the wizarding world, subjugate non-magical people, and destroy all
those who stand in his way, especially Harry Potter.
Since the release of the first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, on 30 June 1997, the
books have gained immense popularity, critical acclaim, and commercial success worldwide. [2] The
series has also had some share of criticism, including concern for the increasingly dark tone. As of July
2013, the books had sold between 400 and 450 million copies, making them one of thebest-selling book
series in history, and had been translated into 73 languages.[3][4] The last four books consecutively set
records as the fastest-selling books in history, with the final instalment selling approximately 11 million
copies in the United States within the first twenty-four hours of its release.
A series of many genres, including fantasy, coming of age, and the British school story (with elements
of mystery, thriller, adventure, and romance), it has many cultural meanings and references.[5] According
to Rowling, the main theme is death.[6] There are also many other themes in the series, such as
prejudice and corruption.[7]
The series was originally printed in English by two major publishers, Bloomsbury in the United Kingdom
and Scholastic Press in the United States. The books have since been published by many publishers
worldwide. The books, with the seventh book split into two parts, have been made into an eight-part film
series by Warner Bros. Pictures, the highest-grossing film series as of October 2014. The series also
originated much tie-in merchandise, making the Harry Potter brand worth in excess of $15 billion.[8]
Because of the success of the books and films, Harry Potter-themed areas, known as The Wizarding
World of Harry Potter, have been created at several Universal Parks & Resorts theme parks.

1 Plot

1.1 Early years

1.2 Voldemort returns

1.3 Supplementary works

2 Structure and genre

3 Themes

4 Origins

5 Publishing history

5.1 Translations

5.2 Completion of the series

6 Achievements

6.1 Cultural impact

6.2 Commercial success

6.3 Awards, honours, and recognition

7 Reception

7.1 Literary criticism

7.2 Social impacts

7.3 Controversies

8 Adaptations

8.1 Films

8.2 Games

8.3 Audiobooks

8.4 Stage production

9 Attractions

9.1 The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

9.2 United Kingdom

10 See also

11 References

12 Further reading

13 External links

Further information: Harry Potter universe

The novels revolve around Harry Potter, an orphan who discovers at the age of eleven that he is a
wizard, living within the ordinary world of non-magical people, known asMuggles.[9] His ability is inborn,
and such children are invited to attend an exclusive magic school that teaches the necessary skills to
succeed in the wizarding world.[10] Harry becomes a student at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and
Wizardry, and it is here where most of the events in the series take place. As Harry develops through his
adolescence, he learns to overcome the problems that face him: magical, social and emotional,
including ordinary teenage challenges such as friendships, infatuation and exams, and the greater test
of preparing himself for the confrontation in the real world that lies ahead. [11]
Each book chronicles one year in Harry's life[12] with the main narrative being set in the years 199198.
The books also contain many flashbacks, which are frequently experienced by Harry viewing the
memories of other characters in a device called a Pensieve.
The environment Rowling created is completely separate from reality yet also intimately connected to it.
While the fantasy land of Narnia is an alternative universe and the Lord of the Rings' Middle-earth a
mythic past, the wizarding world of Harry Potter exists in parallel within the real world and contains
magical versions of the ordinary elements of everyday life. Many of its institutions and locations are
recognisable, such as London.[14] It comprises a fragmented collection of overlooked hidden streets,
ancient pubs, lonely country manors and secluded castles that remain invisible to the Muggle

Early years
When the first novel of the series, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (published in some
countries as Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone), opens it is apparent that some significant event has
taken place in the wizarding worldan event so very remarkable, even the Muggles notice signs of it.
The full background to this event and Harry Potter's past is revealed gradually through the series. After
the introductory chapter, the book leaps forward to a time shortly before Harry Potter's eleventh birthday,
and it is at this point that his magical background begins to be revealed.
Harry's first contact with the wizarding world is through a half-giant, Rubeus Hagrid, keeper of grounds
and keys at Hogwarts. Hagrid reveals some of Harry's history.[15] Harry learns that as a baby he
witnessed his parents' murder by the power-obsessed Dark wizard Lord Voldemort, who then attempted
to kill him also.[15] For reasons not immediately revealed, the spell with which Voldemort tried to kill Harry
rebounded. Harry survived with only a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead as a memento of the
attack, and Voldemort disappeared afterwards. As its inadvertent saviour from Voldemort's reign of
terror, Harry has become a living legend in the wizarding world. However, at the orders of the venerable
and well-known wizard Albus Dumbledore, the orphaned Harry had been placed in the home of his
unpleasant Muggle relatives, the Dursleys, who kept him safe, but hid his true heritage from him in
hopes that he would grow up "normal".[15]
With Hagrid's help, Harry prepares for and undertakes his first year of study at Hogwarts. As Harry
begins to explore the magical world, the reader is introduced to many of the primary locations used
throughout the series. Harry meets most of the main characters and gains his two closest friends: Ron
Weasley, a fun-loving member of an ancient, large, happy, but poor wizarding family, and Hermione
Granger, a gifted and very hardworking witch of non-magical parentage. [15][16] Harry also encounters the
school's potions master,Severus Snape, who displays a deep and abiding dislike for him, and
the Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Quirinus Quirrell, who later turns out to be controlled by Lord
Voldemort. The plot concludes with Harry's second confrontation with Lord Voldemort, who in his quest
for immortality, yearns to gain the power of the Philosopher's Stone, a substance that bestows
everlasting life.[15]
The series continues with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets describing Harry's second year at
Hogwarts. He and his friends investigate a 50-year-old mystery that appears tied to recent sinister
events at the school. Ron's younger sister, Ginny Weasley, enrols in her first year at Hogwarts, and
finds an old notebook which turns out to be Voldemort's diary from his school days. Ginny becomes
possessed by Voldemort through the diary and unconsciously opens the "Chamber of Secrets,"
unleashing an ancient monster which begins attacking students at Hogwarts. The novel delves into the
history of Hogwarts and a legend revolving around the Chamber that soon frightened everyone in the

school. The book also introduces a new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Gilderoy Lockhart, a
highly cheerful, self-conceited know-it-all who later turns out to be a fraud. For the first time, Harry
realises that racial prejudice exists in the wizarding world even before, and he learns that Voldemort's
reign of terror was often directed at wizards who were descended from Muggles. Harry also learns that
his ability to speak Parseltongue, the language of snakes, is rare and often associated with the Dark
Arts. The novel ends after Harry saves Ginny's life by destroying a basilisk and the enchanted diary
which has been the source of the problems.
The third novel, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, follows Harry in his third year of magical
education. It is the only book in the series which does not feature Lord Voldemort. Instead, Harry must
deal with the knowledge that he has been targeted by Sirius Black, an escaped mass murderer believed
to have assisted in the deaths of Harry's parents. As Harry struggles with his reaction to the dementors
dark creatures with the power to devour a human soulwhich are ostensibly protecting the school, he
reaches out to Remus Lupin, a Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher who is eventually revealed to be
a werewolf. Lupin teaches Harry defensive measures which are well above the level of magic generally
executed by people his age. Harry learns that both Lupin and Black were best friends of his father and
that Black was framed by their fourth friend, Peter Pettigrew.[17] In this book, a recurring theme
throughout the series is emphasisedin every book there is a new Defence Against the Dark Arts
teacher, none of whom lasts more than one school year.

Voldemort returns