“Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the lights.”
Really? Alright then, let’s give this a shot:
Yep. That made things better. The Harry Potter books and J.K. Rowling’s world of magic has a way of doing that. Not only are they exceptionally well-written books, but they tell beautiful stories of friendship and bravery that are not easily forgotten. When things are Harry-Potter-less and dark, just whip out these books and say, “Here. Read this. It helps.”
I think most people have read the Harry Potter series (If you haven’t, go read them now. Then come back and we can talk about being friends). But what about the other ones? Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them, to be specific.
Not as many have read that one. Which is a shame, because it rocks.
I read Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them a few months back and it was insanely fun. It’s written by Newt Scamander, Order of Merlin, second class, a wizard with a wide knowledge of all fantastic and magical beasts.
This book is a result of years of travel and research. It explores what wizards have come to categorize as “beasts,” as well as a brief history of how some creatures were originally erroneously categorized as beasts, such as Merpeople, Centaur, and Muggles.
It explains the nature, appearance, and habitat of all beasts known to the wizarding world, as well as suggested ways of dealing with them if they become irksome or dangerous.
It has always been available for purchase at Flourish and Blotts, but it is now possible to obtain it at most Muggle book stores. This particular edition is a copy of the very book that Harry Potter used while attending Hogwarts. Inside can be found markings and recordings made by The Boy Who Lived, as well as some occasional notes from Ron Weasley and Hermoine Granger.
Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them is just plain fun. It’s not a book, per say, because there is no storyline. It’s just a list of the many different magical beasts, as well as some pretty interested bits of history.
For instance, did you know that Werewolves have neither “being” or “beast” status, but are pushed back and forth between the two? There is a Werewolf Support Services at the Being Division, but a Werewolf Capture Unit in the Beasts Division. Yep. As if my heart didn’t already ache for Remus.
Newt Scamander really did a good job putting this book together in a helpful, informative fashion. Okay, so the Muggles say that this book was written by J.K. Rowling, but I know better.
The little notes scribbled in this book are hilarious. They reference practically every book from the Harry Potter series, and they all carry Harry’s trademark: Sarcasm.
Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them is what I call a “supplement read.” Because it’s not technically a book (and because it’s so short), it’s the kind of thing that you read alongside a novel. Preferably a Harry Potter. Might as well do it right.
So should you read this? Heck yeah! Should you read this in preparation for the movie? Ha. No.
Because the movie isn’t really going to be connected to this text. At all. I mean, sure, it’ll probably reference the beasts mentioned in it, and Newt Scamander will be the main character, but you’re not going to get many hints about the movie by reading this little book. There’s just no way you can base a movie off of a textbook that has no story.
So don’t read this book expecting to get insight into this American, 1920’s, No-maj filled world that will be featured in the film.
Yeah, no-maj. I love J.K. Rowling, but I will forever continue to pronounce her name incorrectly, say “Voldemort” with a ‘t’ sound at the end, and refer to non-magical people as Muggles. Just because I’m American doesn’t mean I’m about to get stuck using some weird-sounding name. Sorry. Fun idea, but no.
Anyway, this text is fun. Read it. It’ll give you lots of awesome insight into the magical world that Rowling has crafted. It will also put a massive smile on your face.
Have you read this book or any of the others from the Hogwarts Library collection? Go make Harry Potter references in the comment section. Because, siriusly, after all this time, Harry Potter references are still fun. Always will be. Always. We all know the saying: Draco Dormiens Nunquam Tittilandus and understand that, with the making of this new movie, the Harry Potter fandom has been awakened. You could hit us with the one of Ginny’s Bat-Bogey Hexes, and we still won’t shut up about this.
So tell me your experience with reading Fantastic Beats & Where to Find Them or your thoughts about the movie. Or just your thoughts about Harry Potter in general. I really don’t care. I just like discussing Rowling and her Wizarding World.
Hannah Heath – bookworm and author