This comment from Robinson Meyer over on Google+ kinda blows my mind. We’ve been chatting about fandoms and Harry Potter, and Robinson says:
But the best part of Harry Potter, for me, came in the reading of the first few chapters of each new book. It was like meeting old friends. I’d discover every time that Harry and I had both grown up a little, had emotionally become more sophisticated, and that we also had that same old warm rapport and that same old love for each other. And, on top of that, I was back in Harry’s joyous world, the world that began when I was in 2nd grade, about to find out what was going to happen next! It was like seeing a friend for the first time in three years and picking up the conversation (about his more interesting life) right where we’d left off. It’s funny, but without a doubt reading the first few chapters of Books 5, 6, and 7 are among my happiest memories.
“[R]eading the first few chapters of Books 5, 6, and 7 are among my happiest memories.” That kinda blows my mind.
It also makes me realize that I had no comparable experience as a young reader. There was no fantasy epic being released/revealed as I grew up in the late 80s and early 90s. The closest approximation is probably Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time, which I loved in middle and high school, but… well, yeah. If you know the meta-story of Wheel of Time you know why that wasn’t the most satisfying tale to follow along with.
Seriously, I can’t even fully articulate why—but I am sorta obsessed with the last few lines of Robinson’s comment. It’s almost a recipe. Engineer that, somehow, and you win.