Shared Text/MailBag: Using Harry Potter in Therapy

I spend more time answering mail, believe it or not, than I do writing blog posts, which is understandable. Responding to kind letters — and most of the e-owls I get are very kind — is a treat and putting together my thoughts here requires significantly more effort. Answering mail is easier, too, in that there is almost always a specific question or three to focus on and respond to quickly.

Sometimes, though, the mail includes a remarkable item that throws new light on the depth of the Hogwarts Saga as a cultural phenomenon, even a game changer. The notes below the jump from a Family Therapist reminds me what a boon the decision to include my email address in each of my books has been. More after you read the therapist’s notes —

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Hogwarts Coming to a Kindle near you?

For those of you who have been captured by the e-book craze, the sheer number of books available in this format is rivaled only by the books that are not available, or at least, which haven’t been available yet. Though we may enjoy Harry Potter’s adventures via audiobook, they have not yet been released to the e-reader crowd. J.K. Rowling now appears to be considering the possibility of releasing our favorite wizard to the e-book world. In this article, she is described as exhibiting some interest in the electronic market. While some of us may have loved the fact that our shared text could only be read on a printed page, others may be thrilled that we can take all seven books with us on airplane (really, if I could have any one object from the Wizarding World, it would be Hermione’s purse/self-storage unit, but I still like “real” books). What are your thoughts on the potential e-book release of the Hogwarts Adventures? Are you howling in indignation, laughing with delight, or scratching your head wondering what all the fuss is about?

Department of Accidental and Skewed Shared Text References: Kitten Pattern Dishes and DVDs Sale

As I was recently browsing the local classifieds, I nearly dropped the paper when I came across these two entries back to back. I have been sorely tempted to call the number of the second ad and ask for Dolores! I’m fairly certain the folks at the local paper probably didn’t put these two together on purpose, but it’s fun to think so.

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Taking ‘Shared Text’ Vocabulary to the Movies!

“I’ll explain it to you. And I’ll use small words so you’ll be sure to understand.” The Princess Bride

Standardized tests are generally considered so terrifying that only “IRS” could be considered a scarier acronym than “SAT,” but Brian Leaf takes the big test to our favorite movies and gives us a big tub of popcorn to make learning frequently tested vocabulary  as fun and effortless as a Saturday matinee. In Name that Movie: A Painless Vocabulary Builder, Leaf uses the approach that he has taken in Defining Twilight, Defining New Moon, Defining Eclipse, and Defining Breaking Dawn: he delves into the stories we already know and love and pulls out the words we ought to know.

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Was Shelley’s Dr. Frankenstein an Alchemist? Introducing the ‘Potter as Pearl Harbor’ Thesis

The News from Summit Entertainment this week (H/T to James!) is that the Twilight film makers understand something of what made the Forks Saga the bonanza it has been for them. I’m pretty confident they’d call it “paranormal romance” and “love triangle” rather than “literary alchemy” or “soul triptych” but those of you who have listened to my talks on Harry Potter and Twilight that I gave last weekend at the Eighth Day Institute will recognize the features. From the MTV article, ‘Summit Entertainment To Bring Frankenstein to Life:

Summit Entertainment’s already worked box office magic with vampires and werewolves, but can they do the same for Frankenstein (the mad scientist, not the monster)? According to Deadline, the studio behind “The Twilight Saga” has acquired the screen rights to the upcoming YA novel “This Dark Endeavor: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein” by Kenneth Oppel, which hits bookstores August 23.

The novel is a prequel of sorts to Mary Shelley’s classic “Frankenstein.” The plot centers around young Victor Frankenstein and his quest to save sick twin brother Konrad. He seeks help from a mysterious alchemist, who sends Victor and his friend Elizabeth on a dangerous journey to find the three ingredients needed to create a serum called the Elixir of Life that will heal Konrad. Like any YA novel worth its salt, the inevitable love triangle ensues.

Checking out the Amazon page Book Description, we learn the trio’s hero journey has three stages:

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