Last year, Brother Jason and I challenged each other to a 3-week kamikaze reading/viewing of all the Harry Potter books and movies before the final theatrical installment came out on July 15.
While neither of us actually completed the challenge (in the middle of my reading frenzy, I was finally offered a teaching job, and life got really crazy), I do believe I got the farthest. I got stuck in the middle of Book 5 - probably one of the hardest books of the series to read because Harry is just so angry, and that Umbridge character is just so vile.
Well, a half-read Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix sat on my nightstand for almost a year. About a month ago, I finally finished reading it. And then I finished reading Book 6 in two weeks. And I cried. And then I finished reading Book 7 in two days. And I cried some more. And then I watched the final four movies in one day. And I cried a lot.
I don't know what it is about these books, but they are special. There is something in the story, in the characters, in the words, in the world that JK Rowling created that touches my heart and puts a smile on my face and a tear in my eye. Dare I say it's some kind of magic?
Book 7 opens with this quote from William Penn:
"Death is but crossing the world, as friends do the seas; they live in one another still. For they must needs be present, that love and live in that which is omnipresent. In this divine glass, they see face to face; and their converse is free, as well as pure. This is the comfort of friends, that though they may be said to die, yet their friendship and society are, in the best sense, ever present, because immortal."
And then, of course, the greatest lines in the entire series:
Like I said, special.