Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Stephen King on Harry Potter

SPOILERS for book 7

. . . These books ceased to be specifically for children halfway through the series; by Goblet of Fire, Rowling was writing for everyone, and knew it.

The clearest sign of how adult the books had become by the conclusion arrives — and splendidly — in Deathly Hallows, when Mrs. Weasley sees the odious Bellatrix Lestrange trying to finish off Ginny with a Killing Curse. ''NOT MY DAUGHTER, YOU BITCH!'' she cries. It's the most shocking bitch in recent fiction; since there's virtually no cursing (of the linguistic kind, anyway) in the Potter books, this one hits home with almost fatal force. It is totally correct in its context — perfect, really — but it is also a quintessentially adult response to a child's peril.

Read the rest of King's excellent analysis.


JATB said...

I sat and read the whole thing Sunday afternoon in my copy of EW (yes, I actually subscribe). He has written about Rowling before in EW: he seems to be quite a fan.

I've always been a little curious about King's spiritual understandings, especially after The Stand.

Wayne Larson said...

I know it's probably bad form to even mention this, but I think a part of the reason this works so well in the book is how wonderfully the character of Mrs. Weasley has been played in the movies. I don't know the name of the actress, but I think she pretty much nails it.

Mark said...

King's take on HP was just great. It is hard not to love the man. His book on writing hit me the same way.

I doubt he is any kind of Christian, though I would love it to be otherwise.