Thursday, 29 September 2016

Pottermore Presents by JK Rowling

This review post is for all three of the Pottermore Presents books as they are only short, however they do each have their own review.


Title: Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies
Series: Pottermore Presents (#1)
Author: JK Rowling
From: Amazon
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 6th September 2016
Challenges: 2016 Read the Books You Buy 2016 Prequel & Sequel Challenge (1 point)
Links: Goodreads - Amazon
Synopsis (from Goodreads): ‘Minerva was the Roman goddess of warriors and wisdom. William McGonagall is celebrated as the worst poet in British history. There was something irresistible to me about his name, and the idea that such a brilliant woman might be a distant relative of the buffoonish McGonagall.’ – J.K. Rowling. Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing: short reads originally featured on pottermore.com with some exclusive new additions. These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world. These stories of heroism, hardship and dangerous hobbies profile two of the Harry Potter stories’ most courageous and iconic characters: Minerva McGonagall and Remus Lupin. J.K. Rowling also gives us a peek behind the closed curtains of Sybill Trelawney’s life, and you’ll encounter the reckless, magical-beast-loving Silvanus Kettleburn along the way.

This one had me welling up! The chapter on Remus Lupin was just really moving. I mean it was already clear both from his demeanor and the things that were revealed in the Harry Potter series, that he'd had a hard life, but this was putting it all in one place and in detail. It gave me a greater apprectation for a character that already struck a chord. 

I also really liked learning more about McGonagall, there was so many little extra bits that showed just how well thought out the character was and I thought that it rounded her out as a character, even more so than in the books. 

It was also good to learn more about the Maurauders in the McGonagall and Lupin chapters!


Title: Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Politics and Pesky Poltergeists
Series: Pottermore Presents (#2)
Author: JK Rowling
From: Amazon
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 6th September 2016
Challenges: 2016 Read the Books You Buy
Links: Goodreads Amazon
Synopsis (from Goodreads): No Muggle Prime Minister has ever set foot in the Ministry of Magic, for reasons most succinctly summed up by ex-Minister Dugald McPhail (term of office 1858-1865): “their puir wee braines couldnae cope wi’ it.”’ – J.K. Rowling. Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing: short reads originally featured on pottermore.com with some exclusive new additions. These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world. These stories of power, politics and pesky poltergeists give you a glimpse into the darker side of the wizarding world, revealing the ruthless roots of Professor Umbridge, the lowdown on the Ministers for Magic and the history of the wizarding prison Azkaban. You will also delve deeper into Horace Slughorn’s early years as Potions master at Hogwarts - and his acquaintance with one Tom Marvolo Riddle. 

It was really interesting to find out more about some of the characters with smaller roles in Power, Politics and Pesky Poltergeists, as well as a few who had a bit bigger role. There was more information about Azkaban as well as past Ministers for Magic, which I personally thought showed a lot of well thought out information about the wider world of magic, it has however peaked my curiosity about several areas of magic history (according to Rowling that is), including the role that witches and wizards in the various wars this hinted they got involved in.

I think the most interesting sections of this book were probably the ones about Quirrell and Umbridge. The former because so much happened since his role in the books and the latter because her motivations are fascinating but until now completely unfatherable. 


I also enjoyed Rowling's notes on inspirations and her process for characters.


Title: Hogwarts, an Incomplete & Unreliable Guide
Series: Pottermore Presents (#3)
Author: JK Rowling
From: Amazon
Genre: Fantasy
Release Date: 6th September 2016
Challenges: 2016 Read the Books You Buy, 2016 Prequel & Sequel Challenge (1 point)
Links: Goodreads - Amazon
Synopsis (from Goodreads): ‘The Ministry of Magic felt strongly, however, that to construct an additional wizarding station in the middle of London would stretch even the Muggles’ notorious determination not to notice magic when it was exploding in front of their faces.’ – J.K. Rowling. Pottermore Presents is a collection of J.K. Rowling’s writing: short reads originally featured on pottermore.com. These eBooks, with writing curated by Pottermore, will take you beyond the Harry Potter stories as J.K. Rowling reveals her inspiration, intricate details of characters’ lives and surprises from the wizarding world. Hogwarts An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide takes you on a journey to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. You’ll venture into the Hogwarts grounds, become better acquainted with its more permanent residents, learn more about lessons and discover secrets of the castle . . . all at the turn of a page.

I'm not all that sure what I was expecting from Hogwarts an Incomplete & Unreliable Guide, I was completely engrossed learning various things about Hogwarts that probably couldn't have been learnt in any other way, and it is those little details that I think makes Rowling's world so engaging in the first place. 

What I found even more interesting was that this book contained almost a commentary from JK Rowling herself, which let the reader know why things weren't included in the series or how she made a decision about what or who to include.

This was interesting and I enjoyed learning more about Hogwarts.