On 24 August 1999 Harry Potter och De Vises Sten was first published in Sweden. To celebrate the anniversary, publisher Rabén & Sjögren has reissued the entire Harry Potter series with stunning new covers by the artist Olly Moss. This has been shortly followed by the launch of a special anniversary podcast PotterPodden – Harry Potter Bok För Bok, a collaboration between audio platform Storytel and Rabén & Sjögren.
The podcast is hosted by journalist Marie Birde (founder of Darling magazine, the radio programme Stil on P1 and the children’s magazine, Koko), who has read the Harry Potter books an ‘inappropriate’ amount of times: ‘It’s essentially a book club where we read one book at a time and discuss them,’ says Birde.
The podcast will cover a range of topics for each book – from what is your favourite chapter to the best spell and the coolest Hogwarts house. And the perennial question: can’t Dumbledore ever say anything plainly?
There will be seven episodes – one for each book – and every episode features one to two guests. All the participants are Harry Potter fans and love the wizarding world. The books are read in order, from Harry Potter och De Vises Sten to Harry Potter och Dödsrelikerna.
The first episode features guest Björn Kjellman, who has recently narrated the entire series for digital audio in Swedish, and fellow Potter expert Gabriella Gomez from the Science Fiction bookshop chain.
Later in the season, the podcast will be joined by the bestselling author Jonas Gardell, artist Janice, TV hosts Josefin Johansson and Johanna Koljonen, as well as popular psychologist Henrik Fexeus. We are told they are some of the biggest fans of Harry Potter in Scandinavia!
‘Hearing about how much people have invested in Harry Potter has been so exciting. People have built their identities around the series and thoroughly analysed every single book – and that has also made me look at the books in a new, perhaps more enlightened, way. I’m already looking forward to re-reading the entire series for the umpteenth time. And to never stop discussing these titles,’ says Marie Birde.
The first episode of PotterPodden – Harry Potter Bok För Bok premiered on 24 August and a new episode will be released every Saturday until 5 October. You can listen to it on Storytel’s own app, but also on most mainstream podcast services.