Tag: harry potter (Page 1 of 7)

Finding Harry Potter Contest Header

WINNER ANNOUNCED! Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County

Enter to win a Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County: A Muggle’s Guide ebook. To sweeten the pot (and get more eyeballs on my ebook!), I’m including a brand-new, Harry Potter-themed journal.

Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County: A Muggle's Guide

All you have to do is enter your email address in the contest widget below. You can also share the contest on social media, or visit my Facebook page, for more chances to win. The winner will receive Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County: A Muggle’s Guide in the ebook format of their choice, along with a brand-new, Harry Potter-themed journal that will be shipped directly from Amazon. (The journal is of my choosing.) Be sure to read the rules!

And as Hermione said to Harry before the first Triwizard trial, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Finding Harry Potter Header

Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County

Calling all Muggles! Have you ever wanted to visit Hogwarts? Or see Godric’s Hollow? Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, has several magical places that seem like they are right out of the Harry Potter series. I just published an eBook, Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County: A Muggle’s Guide. My book will take you to seven sites, one for each book, across Lancaster County that will transport you into the wizarding world of Harry Potter.

Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County Book Cover

Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County Book Cover

Background

The book was inspired by an article I wrote for a local newspaper, which was inspired by a set of geocaches I wanted to place. But it all began when a friend of mine suggested that I eat at the Gypsy Kitchen in Lancaster, because it looks like the Great Hall at Hogwarts. I took her advice and I fell in love with not only the restaurant, but also the building in which it’s located.

My imagination took off. I wanted to create a series of Harry Potter-themed geocaches that would take fans to places in and around Lancaster that looked like places from the Harry Potter books. I pictured fans arriving at a site and getting all excited about being somewhere Harry Potter-like. However, my time and energy for the project petered out.

Months later, I pitched an article to the York newspaper about seven places in Lancaster County that seemed like they were from the Harry Potter book series. They bought it and I wrote the article, which did pretty well, in terms of page views and readers. But the idea just wouldn’t let go of me, so I wrote the eBook. It’s my way of paying homage to both the wizarding world of J.K. Rowling and Lancaster County.

I published Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County through Pronoun, which is a free service offered by Macmillan Publishers. If you’re looking to publish an eBook, I highly recommend this service. They make it very easy, with step by step Q&As that help you piece it together. Then, they recommend pricing and categories, and they also offer sales tracking and marketing services. I couldn’t be happier with Pronoun.

Excerpt

The eBook is short, but long enough to cover where to go in Lancaster County and why each place reminds me of Harry Potter. Here’s an excerpt:

The Gypsy Kitchen is a wonderful restaurant that resides inside a building that looks so much like the courtyard at Hogwarts, you’ll do a double-take. This Hogwarts look-alike is Dietz Hall, of Lancaster Theological Seminary, in downtown Lancaster, just off Harrisburg Ave. The exterior has covered brick walkways, stone paths and an arched entrance, just like the main courtyard at Hogwarts. There’s even a crest, centered above the walkway. Sadly, the crest doesn’t bear a lion, badger, raven or serpent.

Visit the sales page for Finding Harry Potter in Lancaster County to download a copy from your favorite online bookseller. Thanks for reading!

 

Copyright: © 2016 WARNER BROS ENTERTAINMENT INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Photo Credit: Jaap Buitendijk Caption: (L-r) DAN FOGLER as Jacob, EDDIE REDMAYNE as Newt and KATHERINE WATERSTON as Tina in Warner Bros. Pictures' fantasy adventure "FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

6 ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Themes Found in Harry Potter

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has several things in common with J.K. Rowling’s other wizarding world movies. And I don’t mean wands and Grindewald.

J.K. Rowling wrote Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them as an original screenplay, whereas the Harry Potter movies were adapted from her novels. Fantastic Beasts marks her first time writing something original in a completely new format.

The story is about Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), who arrived in New York City, sometime in the 1920s or ’30s, to capture a rogue magical creature. While he’s there, the other magical creatures inside his case escaped and caused a good deal of mayhem. He spent the rest of the movie trying to capture them.

Even though this story took place in America, and in a different time period, it had similarities to the Harry Potter story.

Hello, Darkness, My Old Friend

Like other J.K. Rowling stories, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them started out as a fun and frivolous adventure, but turned dark and deadly before the end. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, her first book, had some danger and death in the story. But the series didn’t delve into truly dark territory until Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the third book, when Sirius and the Dementors came on the scene.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was pretty grim all-round. To start with, the production design involved almost no color. The sets, costumes and landscape were gray gray gray. That may have been to make the world inside Newt’s case look even livelier, but man, I just wanted someone to turn up the lights!

 Copyright: © 2016 WARNER BROS ENTERTAINMENT INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Photo Credit: Jaap Buitendijk Caption: (L-r) COLIN FARRELL as Graves and EZRA MILLER as Credence in Warner Bros. Pictures' fantasy adventure "FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

COLIN FARRELL as Graves and EZRA MILLER as Credence

The scenes between Graves (Colin Farrell) and Credence (Ezra Miller) were pretty darn creepy. And yes, those were sexual undertones you sensed in those scenes. I interpreted them as Graves being a predator to Credence’s prey. Credence was attracted to more than just getting a pat on the head for a job well done. Remember, Graves turned out to be Grindewald, who was gay. (I’m not saying everyone who is gay is a predator!) I believe there was a intimacy forming between them that made Credence’s pain all the worse when he was betrayed. Dark stuff, indeed.

Can’t Keep a Good Muggle Down

Another common theme in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the Harry Potter books is the unfairness of a class system. Throughout the seven Harry Potter books, Muggles were looked down on by a group of wizards. Then we learned that Pure Bloods looked down on Half-Bloods and Mudbloods, as well. Other magical species, like giants, elves and centaurs, were also oppressed. Although Harry’s story was front and center, the story about Voldemort rising to power and eradicating entire races of beings became the overarching story.

In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, wizards weren’t allowed to be with Muggles. Muggles were considered separate, and possibly lesser. Plus, a hierarchy existed in the American wizarding world, with the Ministry of Magic ranking at the top, like royalty.

Look Who’s Coming to Dinner

Along with the examination of different races and how they treat each other, mixed marriages are also a hot topic in J.K. Rowling’s books. In the Harry Potter books, particularly Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, several characters expressed disgust at the idea of wizards “mating” with Muggles. Voldemort detested his father for being a Muggle. Even poor Dean was on the run because one of his parents was a Muggle. 

 Copyright: © 2016 WARNER BROS ENTERTAINMENT INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Photo Credit: Jaap Buitendijk Caption: (L-r) ALISON SUDOL as Queenie and DAN FOGLER as Jacob in Warner Bros. Pictures' fantasy adventure "FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

ALISON SUDOL as Queenie and DAN FOGLER as Jacob Kowalski

The wizards and witches in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them were very clearly prohibited from consorting with Muggles. Of course, that didn’t stop Queenie (Alison Sudol) from falling for Kowalski (Dan Fogler), but they sure had to keep it secret.

Day By Day

I don’t know J.K. Rowling’s personal religious beliefs, but from her books and Fantastic Beasts, I’d wager she’s not crazy about organized religion. Now, I don’t have any evidence from the seven Harry Potter books to point to and say, “See how she hates church?” The only evidence I can submit is that there is a complete lack of religion of any kind. The only kind of worship that’s mentioned was of Voldemort, as well as the Deathly Hallows. Sort of.

Religion wasn’t depicted nicely at all in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Mary Lou (Samantha Morton) used Christianity like a weapon. She claimed to be a God-fearing woman, but she abused the orphans in her care in more ways than one. She lacked compassion completely, for strangers and “loved” ones alike. She wore her self-righteousness like a badge, like armor.

Copyright: © 2016 WARNER BROS ENTERTAINMENT INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Photo Credit: Jaap Buitendijk Caption: SAMANTHA MORTON as Mary Lou Barebone in Warner Bros. Pictures' fantasy adventure "FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

SAMANTHA MORTON as Mary Lou Barebone

Orphans

Speaking of orphans, the loss of parents is a big, big theme for J.K. Rowling. The most obvious reference is Harry Potter, himself. He was orphaned when his parents died at the hands of Voldemort, who was also an orphan. Neville Longbottom may as well have been an orphan, because his parents were locked away in Saint Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. Later, after Hermione had to Obliviate her parents before she went on the run, she talked to Harry about how her parents wouldn’t remember her, essentially becoming an orphan.

There’s a whole house full of orphans in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Their care wsn’t top-notch. No doubt this depiction was informed by J.K. Rowling’s own mission to make orphanages better, in countries like Hungary and Romania. She started out using her own money and fame to do something about the cages and malnutrition she found in orphanages she toured. Then she started her own charity, Lumos.

Heil

Another theme in J.K. Rowling’s work is that ol’ chestnut “with great power comes great responsibility.” She depicts people with power going out of control. In the Harry Potter books, Minister Fudge was very reluctant to give up his position. His delay in acting against Voldemort was one of the reasons the Dark Lord was able to gain a foothold in the wizarding world. Plus, Voldemort was the ultimate in out-of-control power.

 Copyright: © 2016 WARNER BROS ENTERTAINMENT INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Photo Credit: Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures Caption: CARMEN EJOGO as Seraphina Picquery in Warner Bros. Pictures' fantasy adventure "FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

CARMEN EJOGO as Seraphina Picquery

Graves, in Fantastic Beasts, was out of control too. He worked independently from the very Ministry of which he’s part. He abused his power in his attempt to get even more power. And while Minister Seraphina Picquery (Carmen Ejogo) wasn’t a dictator, she was quick to jump to unfair conclusions about Newt and his friends.

Thanks for reading! Sign up for my newsletter to get new blog posts sent to your inbox before they’re posted.

Page 1 of 7

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén

%d bloggers like this: