Deb Elise Worships J.K. Rowling’s Characters

Order of the PhoenixI was about to write a whole piece on how I create characters… until I realized I just did that post a few weeks ago.

My mind is clearly not working well.

Instead, I will briefly wax rhapsodic about some of my favorite all-time characters… the whole cast of Harry Potter.  The books, not the movies.  I’m not against the movies, but I just saw Order of the Phoenix right after once again reading the book, and there was so much chopped out that it didn’t work for me at all.

There are a zillion reasons Rowling’s series is a phenomenon, and while strict continuity isn’t one of them (what do you mean Harry can’t see thestrals until after Goblet of Fire?  He saw his mom die when he was a baby!!!), characters absolutely are.  The way they speak, the way they act, the way they carry themselves… every single person Rowling creates stands out as a distinct individual.  By the time you’re a couple books in, she needs only to lob out a keyword, and the full image of the person springs into your mind.

Curtain of greasy black hair?  Snape.

Drawl?  Draco Malfoy always drawls.

Nearly any word ending with an apostrophe?  You see Hagrid lumbering through your mind.

Yes, her world and her mythology are beautifully engrossing, but it’s the characters that make you want to spend time in her wizarding world.

Speaking of wizarding worlds, as you read this, I am AT the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando.  I’ll have my phone with me and will be checking, so if you’ve been there, please let me know if there’s anything specific I should see!

~ Deb Elise

18 Replies to “Deb Elise Worships J.K. Rowling’s Characters”

  1. Oh, I’m so jealous! The Wizarding World of Harry Potter sounds fantastic! I know you must be having a blast. 🙂

    I agree about Rowling’s characterizations — they’re superb.

  2. I cannot wait to take my kids there!

    Okay, so I’d go there on my own, without kids. I did take my kids to the final movie, though. My husband (who has not read the books) really loved it, as did they. I loved it too, even though the books are better (as is the case with most film adaptations).

    Have fun!

  3. I kinda wish I hadn’t seen the movies so I still had my pictures of the characters in my head instead of the actors, because you are right – they are great!

    Hope you’re having fun. When you are at Universal, you are only steps from one of my favorite places in the world – the Portofino hotel. Give it a kiss from me!

    1. I actually think the casting is terrific in the movies. My issue with them is that they have to cut out so much for time that you lose too many of the nuances that make the books so terrific. Things are unmotivated unless you fill in the blanks with (and change the story back to) what you know from the books.

      1. Oh, I totally agree that the casting is great, but I just wish I could remember how I’d pictured them before I saw the movies.

        And yes, the endless book to movie conundrum – time, time, time.

  4. I’m with you, Eleanor. After reading and movie-watching Books 1 – 4, I’ve hesitated in viewing the remaining movies lest they spoil my fond memories of the written (and read) word!

    And how lucky is Miss M? 🙂

    1. I never saw the movies after 2, so I’m now watching for the first time with Miss M. The best I can say about them is they’re like Cliff’s Notes — bringing select moments to vivid life.

      I might change that tune after 6 and 7, but Order of the Phoenix really left me cold. The movie version, that is.

    1. The spells too! I love everything about the books, even the holes. I also love that while I’m a strong adherent to Stephen King’s Adverbs Generally Bite rule, Rowling ignores that entirely, blithely using adverbs that only repeat what we learn from the dialogue, and it doesn’t harm the flow a bit.

  5. I’m pretty sure I’m the only person on the planet who’s never seen a Harry Potter movie. I’ve read the first book, but kinda lost interest after that. I suck.


    1. I’m with Tawna on the book side. I read the first one and didn’t like it, didn’t really enjoy the writing, I will sit and watch the movies though- I’m not going at midnight or anything but they will get my attention where I’m not bored for the two hours.

      1. I don’t hold the lack of Potter-ness against either of you. There are all kinds of beloved books out there I never got into (Dallas, you and I have gone over the Nicholas Sparks thing), and some random ones that I love but are off the general radar.

        I will say neither of you should go to the Wizarding World theme park though — if you’re not a complete Potter geek, the crowds will make you miserable!

  6. I HAVE been to HP World and it’s amazing! Obviously, the Forbidden Forest ride is where it’s at. I wanted to go over and over. Butterbeer is delish, get the frozen, not warm. The dueling roller coasters I could have skipped. They made me a bit nauseous. But loved Olivanders, and Zonko’s. And the Dr. Seuss world at Universal is right next door and also amazing! Have so much fun!

    1. Forbidden Ride was UNBELIEVABLE!!! I even loved the line! That made the stultifying heat, the oppressive crush of bodies, and the long waits all worthwhile.

      Plus we got Hermione’s wand for Miss M. Score!

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