33rd out of 88 books — 186 voters
Harry Potter & Imagination: The Way Between Two Worlds
"What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality." Those words, written by Plutarch and quoted by J.K. Rowling in her 2008 Harvard commencement speech, sum up both the Harry Potter series and Travis Prinzi's analysis of the best-selling books in Harry Potter & Imagination: The Way Between Two Worlds. Great imaginative literature places the readers between two worlds...more
Paperback, 332 pages
Published December 1st 2008 by Zossima Press
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(showing 1-30 of 612)
This book was really uneven. Prinzi is a skilled commentator, but some of the essays were better than others. The first chapter (on Harry Potter as faerie story) was fairly weak, not because the argument cannot be made, but because he does not make it very well. The book solidly improves until the last three chapters, which were tremendously irritating, being explorations of politics, gender, and social justice in the Potter books. I felt it was here that Prinzi was weakest, not merely because I...more
I liked this. It's still kind of a foreign experience reading commentary on the Harry Potter books instead of the Harry Potter books themselves, but I could get used to a bit of it. Things I learned: Jo Rowling is a lot smarter than I gave her credit for, it's time to revisit my stockpile of notes about Tolkien and Lewis, and I'm still pretty glad that I didn't take literary theory in college. Part I was my favorite, for the aforementioned Lewis/Tolkien reasons. My only critique: beware, typos a...more
Great analysis of the Harry Potter books. I learned interesting new things about not only JK Rowling, but also about some of the other authors Rowling is compared to. If you are looking for something new to read in the Potter universe, this is a good place to start. As others have said, there were a lot of typo errors, which got fairly distracting at times. Hopefully there will be a revised edition at some point to fix those.