A few days ago my friend tells me that JK Rowling apologized for killing off Fred Weasley in the, duh, Harry Potter book series. So I’ve gone back through my blog and I can’t find an instance where I told this story, the story about me and Book 7, The Deathly Hallows.
I went to the Barnes & Noble for the midnight release of The Deathly Hollows. The way it worked, since I’d gone to previous midnight sales, was you showed up early, got your ticket with a number, and then you were free to go about your day and not spend 14 hours sitting in a line. I went in the late afternoon and got number 200 something. With about 5 hours to kill my friends and I (and I can’t even remember who was there that day), went over to the Irish bar and I got fucking plastered.
The room was spinning by the time I made it back to the bookstore. I was drunk at a children’s book release party. Still, I managed to get my book and get home. I was too drunk to read and I passed out at some point in the night only to wake up with the worst hangover. Imagine my pain, that my head was in so much pain I could not read this book. But I had to know what happened, and so I skimmed.
I skimmed until I got to Fred Weasley’s death. I was in such shock that I had to go back, move past the pain, and pay close attention. I knew that there would be casualties in book 7 and I was under no impression my fave character, Remus Lupin, would live though I wished he and Harry would get to meet for tea and have long talks about James Potter and Sirius Black through the years. Sigh. Fred kind of blind sighted me and filled me with such anger that nearly eight years later, I still hold a grudge.
I skimmed the rest of the book, and stopped around the final battle to get a real sense of what was going on. I also managed to read the Epilogue (which I also hated). And that was that. The next day I felt fine, but I was too angry to go back and read through the book. I still haven’t read more than what I read that day, as I laid my head on my toilet.
I was done. I took all my Harry Potter novels to the goodwill drop off. I have since bought back Sorcerer’s Stone when my daughter wanted to read it, but she never got past the second chapter so I never had to re-buy the others. My best friend still thinks I’m nuts. I agree it’s silly of me to have given up like that. I love the theme parks, and I still wear and buy Slytherin stuff. I just like being a Slytherin. And however much I might hate Book 7, and however much I might critique certain other things in the books, there’s too much I enjoy to really get rid of it all completely.
Yes, JK Rowling can do whatever she wants with her characters. But every time I scroll by a fan art of George Weasley looking into a mirror, because every mirror is the mirror of Erised to George Weasley, my heart breaks all over again, and I know I can’t go back and read those stories anymore.