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How Harry Cast His Spell: The Meaning Behind the Mania for J. K. Rowling's Bestselling Books [Kindle Edition]

John Granger
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

More than any other book of the last fifty years (and perhaps ever), the Harry Potter novels have captured the imagination of children and adults around the world. Yet no one has ever been able to unlock the secret of Harry's wild popularity . . . until now. Updated and expanded since its original publication as Looking for God in Harry Potter (and now containing final conclusions based on the entire series), How Harry Cast His Spell explains why the books meet our longing to experience the truths of life, love, and death; help us better understand life and our role in the universe; and encourage us to discover and develop our own gifts and abilities.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2653 KB
  • Print Length: 303 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale Momentum (18 Aug. 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001BADGS6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #336,613 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Harry Potter, An excellent Introduction. 6 Feb. 2010
This is an excellent intoduction to the Harry Potter books. If you want to know the answers to the meaning of the Potter novels and and why they are so successfull then look no further. John Granger writes an interesting and compelling read. It is written from a christian point of view, but do not let that put you off. The book explores Symbols, Names, Magic, Good and Evil, Life and Death, Alchemy, Spiritual content, and christian meaning, and a whole lot more.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is how Harry cast his spell! 17 Jun. 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
How Harry Casts His Spell was originally entitled Looking for God in Harry Potter and there's no doubt the original title describes far better what the book is about. Before you get the idea it's a collection of sermons hooked onto to Harry, let me say at once it's a terrific work of literary criticism.

John Granger knows the Harry Potter books inside out and clearly loves them deeply. How Harry Casts His Spell is a wonderful uncovering of the deep spiritual truths that exist in any worthwhile work of literature. It's also a brave book; it was written when Harry Potter was the object of hatred among the more weird and wonderful of the religious Right, when loads of people "didn't get" what all the fuss was about because Harry was "just" a kids' book and were deeply scornful of those who did.

John Granger's style is very readable and he does the reader the courtesy of assuming that not only are they are serious about wanting to understand why the Harry Potter saga has so many millions of admirers but are perfectly capable of taking on board some very serious themes.

Obviously this book is for Harry Potter lovers and if you're interested in philosophy, ethics and religion, this book is for you
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  25 reviews
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars straight forward analysis of Harry Potter 28 Dec. 2008
By B. C. Pollard - Published on
I have read many of John Granger's books and am completely enamored with The Deathly Hallows Lectures. I did not think that I would that this book supplant it as my favorite of Granger's writing, but it might be. Where the Lectures are a strong academic analysis after the completion of series, this book is written in a more straight forward manner and is the book that I will recommend to my friends and family who are more casual fans of the series. It should be noted that this is the third edition of the book previously titled Looking for God in Harry Potter, so if you think Christians are trying to force their world view into the Harry Potter series, then this isn't the book for you. Although you don't have to be a Christian to enjoy this book. J.K. Rowling has called the Christian symbolism in the books, "obvious," and she's writing in a tradition of British literature that is very Christian. Rowling is writing about her faith and you don't have to be religious to see how the final book in the series is a story to symbolize her personal faith and the struggle that ensues to even have faith. John Granger successfully synthesizes this and much more into this book to show how "a children's story" has become the most popular epic book in the last hundred years. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to see the mechanics of why the Harry Potter series entralls millions of people worldwide.
21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Harry Cast His Spell: The Meaning Behind the Mania for J. K. Rowling's Bestselling Books 11 Jun. 2009
By RebelReader - Published on
Harry Potter has captured the imaginations of millions of children and adults from every walk of life. The series has possibly experienced more popularity than any other book of the last fifty years having sold millions of copies around the world. With this in mind many have asked "Why is Harry Potter is so insanely popular?" As a fan of the Harry Potter series I already knew the answer, but this book has wrought to light many of the Christian aspects of series which I over looked. How Harry Potter casts his spells is an interesting look in to the Christian aspects of the Harry Potter Book series.

Below is the Table of Contents taken from the book. I like the way the Author wrote an explanation of each chapter in such a informative and humorous way. Through this book the Author adds a touch of humor to his writing.

Acknowledgments Publisher's Preface Introduction

1: Magic, Fantasy, and Transcendence
The magic in Harry Potter is traditional literary spellwork that acts as a counterspell to the materialism of our times.

2: Cosmic White Hats and Black Hats
The Harry Potter Novels revolve around the central conflict of good and evil

3: The Hero's Journey
Harry's adventures take him through life, death and resurrection

4: The Alchemy of Spiritual Growth
The story of cycles are built on the stages of transformation

5: One Person, Two Natures
Doppelgangers point to the struggle of dual natures- and their resolution in the God-Man.

6:Don't Judge, Lest You Be Judged
Surprise endings suggest a remedy for the evils of prejudice

7: The Triumph of Love over Death
The mystery of death meets the ultimate answer

8: The Question of Identity
Harry defines himself through choices, change, and destiny

9: Evidence of Things Unseen
The symbols in Potterdom are powerful pointers to spiritual realities

10: Fun with Names
The character names are delightful puzzles with hidden spiritual meanings

11: The Purification of the Soul
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
12: Dangerous Books and Edifying Books
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

13: Despair and Delivery
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and Prisoner of Azkaban
14: Girded with Virtue
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

15: Dark night of the Soul
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and the the Order of the Phoenix

16: Baptism into a Sacrificial Death
Spiritual keys to Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

17: Choosing to Believe
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as the stuggle with faith in story form

18: Christian Birth through Baptism
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as the alchemical adventures of a Christian Everyman
19: Victory Over Death
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as the Passion gospel of Christian Everyman

20: FAQs
The other big questions on the minds of Harry Potter reader's


My Personal Opinion
"How Harry Cast His Spell:The Meaning Behind the Mania for J. K. Rowling's Bestselling Books"
is an interesting read for any Christian fan of Harry Potter, this book shows that Christian symbolism is easily found in the Harry Potter series for those willing to search for it.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More enlightenment from John Granger 21 Aug. 2009
By Deborah Kogan - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
John Granger is an excellent writer, and a pleasure to read. All of his books on Harry Potter enable one to find new levels of meaning in the series. How Harry Cast His Spell is the newest edition of his books emphasizing the series' spiritual content. Unlocking Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Lectures are more aimed at discussing the series' literary aspects. Do not feel that this is just a rehash of Looking for God in Harry Potter, its previous edition. Although there are many of the same chapter titles, and some material is from the earlier edition, there is ample new coverage of The Deathly Hallows' spiritual aspects. There are some of the same helpful charts found in Looking for God in Harry Potter, but there are more, and fresh insights that allow you to say "Hey, I didn't notice that" the first (or second) time you read the series. For example, note the light ball of the Deluminator entering Ron's chest (near his heart) illuminating his spirit on Christmas morning, before he went back to his friends in the Forest of Dean. John Granger has a talent for discussing very weighty topics in an easy, enjoyable manner. There is a world of difference between Granger, and Kern's The Wisdom of Harry Potter (valuable reading, but a hard slog in comparison). Reading John Granger will enrich your experience of the Harry Potter series and your view of the world.
19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book that will enhance your enjoyment of the HP series! 4 Oct. 2008
By Stacey - Published on
"How Harry Cast His Spell" by John Granger (Any relation to Hermione?) initially captures the reader's attention with the lovely cover. Inside, the beautiful font, wonderful graphics and page header designs tickle the eyes. This is a humorously written look at why the Harry Potter franchise is such a phenomenon. The author points out the Christian concepts that are prominent in the immensely popular boy wizard stories, which only seems to prove that you can find the good in something if you go looking for it. Sadly, I find that the same is true if you go looking for the bad.

I don't consider this a must read unless you're severely anti-Harry Potter, in which case, you probably wouldn't read the book anyway. However, I must applaud the author for the amount of thought he put into this book. His research and the conclusions he's drawn are fascinating. This takes Harry Potter to a whole new level of enjoyment for me, personally.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No smoke without fire 31 Jan. 2009
By ChildofImmanuel - Published on
I've loved Harry Potter for years but never articulated the reason for my enjoyment beyond liking the setting and the characters (especially as the latter matured and made right choices). John Granger showed me the symbols of Christ in the book, analyzed the formula that always results in Harry's "death" and "resurrection," and introduced me to literary alchemy. This is a bookish adaptation of real alchemy, not concerned with turning metal to gold but rather with purifying souls. "How Harry Cast his Spell" may help you understand your liking of Rowling's books, or it may take away your fear. The only reason I didn't give this book a 5 is that the writing style could use some improvement.
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