Jul. 23rd, 2007

tortietta: (mind wander)
A little over two weeks ago I decided I'd try to reread all six Harry Potter books before the release of Deathly Hallows. I never thought I'd get through all six in such a short time frame however I surprised myself and when I closed HBP on Friday night I knew it had been worth it.

I had forgotten just how much I loved these books. For me, so much of the joy of these books is the reading experience itself. The moments that catch you up and make you laugh and scream and cry, those chapters that you just can't put down no matter what, those times where you feel your heart pounding and your eyes stinging and your voice caught in your throat - every moment of the reading experience makes these books just that much more special.

The more I read the more I wanted talk about the books again. I remembered the desire I had when I first finished GoF in mid 2001 to find out more, to get my hands on anything I could. I was drawn to fandom, to the old yahoo groups and the smattering of fan fiction which ultimately led me to here, and I realised just how much I missed this. Missed fandom, missed the friends I had made through it, missed the discussions and theorizing.

Friday night I kept putting off reading the last 50 pages of HBP. I didn't want it to end. I knew that when I finally closed HBP that there was only one more step to take in this incredible journey. A step we have all been waiting for; a step that would ultimately bring some form of closure to this wonderful experience.

Which brings me to Saturday morning. The waiting. The nerves. The excitement. Everything culminating in the moment when I finally had DH in my hands. Wanting nothing more than to open it right away, but knowing that I wanted to read it slowly, to savour every word. I didn't want to rush this last journey, and I am so thankful now that I took my time to enjoy every word because the wait was so worth it.

As I said earlier so much of my joy of these books comes from the reading experience itself, and I wasn't disappointed this last time. I laughed, I cried, I shrieked and shouted. Some chapters I'd read and then stop to reflect on them, other chapters I found myself rereading just after I'd read them, and other chapters I'd fly through with my heart pounding and my head spinning. So was it worth it? Was it worth the wait? Was it worth drinking in every single word and savouring it? Hell yes.

Knowing that I've now closed the book on this last journey and that it's finally over, that there is no going back, no more first times, no more guessing and theorizing, well, it's like saying goodbye to one of your closest friends for good. The memories will always be there. The story will always stay the same, but the experience, well the experience will never be the same. Every reread will bring something new to the surface, every time the seven books are read in sequence I'll feel the magic, but there's nothing more to add to the journey and I think that in itself is gut wrenching.

When I finally finished DH I didn't know what to think, what to feel. I wanted to reread it straight away and yet I couldn't bring myself open the book again. I felt hollow and yet completely satisfied. The closure had come, and I had loved nearly every moment of it.

It's going to take a little while before I can really formulate any thoughts on the book. I want to reread it but I'm going to wait a few days before I pick it back up again because I'm still letting this all just sink in.

The reading experience may never be same, but I can't wait to see how everyone enjoyed their experiences. I'm so glad this has drawn me back here, reminded me how much I loved this place, how much I missed so many of you. The reading experience is only part of this journey and I am so glad that I get to share the rest of the experience with all of you.

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tortietta

January 2009

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