In July, we encourage someone’s new journey in Starting Harry Potter, with a collection of free resources and online goodies to help your adventure begin. Here’s just a few ways we’re celebrating beginning the books for the first time this summer.
If you’re a member of Audible, and are based in the UK, US or Canada, you’ll be able to stream the first Harry Potter audiobook (in association with our friends at Pottermore Publishing!) for a limited time. In the US and CA, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and in the UK, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, are now included with Audible membership until the 4th August.
Upcoming book, the Harry Potter Wizarding Almanac, invites you to see the wizarding world like never before, with gorgeous, full-colour artwork celebrating the Harry Potter stories in exquisite detail. Releasing this October with Bloomsbury and Scholastic, this visual compendium has been illustrated by seven talented artists, each adopting the characters, plots, locations and objects of the Harry Potter series in their own unique style.
One such artist, Peter Goes, took on the mammoth challenge of illustrating Hogwarts castle itself, complete with all its secrets within, such as paintings, ghosts, talking portraits and more. You can explore Peter’s illustration of Hogwarts with a bit of digital magic from us, where you can click around the castle, learn fun facts and listen to audio clips.
Our special digital space for celebrating the start of your Harry Potter journey, StartingHarryPotter.com, has been magically updated with more activities, more games and more information on the wizarding world for you to chew over. Grab some Floo Powder and whizz on over to our dedicated website to see what digital sorcery we’ve conjured up for you this year. And for the first time, you’ll be able to listen to the first chapter of the second Harry Potter book too!
We’re also once again asking for you to channel your creative energies into submitting new artwork for us, which will be displayed in our online gallery. (You can have a browse for inspo right here!)
And seeing as July hosts the birthdays of two very important characters in the series (Neville Longbottom and our Harry himself!) why not create a birthday card or cake and send us a picture this time around? Whatever way you choose to express yourself artistically, we’d love to see it.
‘Ready, set, read!’ UK-based reading charity, the Reading Agency, is launching its Summer Reading Challenge, where young readers up and down the country are tasked to celebrate the medium of reading through the power of play, sport and physical activity.
From July to September, children will be able to join the Challenge for free at their local library (in association with the Youth Sport Trust) and face an assortment of extra fun physical challenges themed around the magic of books. This amazing charity event would certainly lend itself well to picking a Harry Potter book for the Challenge!
If you’re in the US, did you know it’s been 25 years since the launch of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was published?! To celebrate, starting in September, join the nationwide party in bookstores, libraries and schools across America, wherever you are. Libraries around the country will be hosting “Welcome to Hogwarts” Harry Potter Book Clubs, with themed giveaways that will also be available at select bookstores.
And in October, the festivities continue across the pond, as UK publishers Bloomsbury bring forth Harry Potter Book Day, joined by other global publishers. If only Professor Flitwick was around to help us decorate!
You can start your foray into the wizarding world with the Starting Harry Potter hub right now.