Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? Hardcover – 8 Nov 2008
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Author Nancy Solon Villaluz has done a tremendous amount of research, reading every Rowling interview, listening to every podcast and radio interview, and by using Rowling own words and hints, has uncovered secrets and patterns that help the reader to understand what Rowling really wanted to do with these books.
But besides all of the research, Villaluz shows herself to be extremely well read, quoting everything from Dickens, to Monty Python, to John the Baptist, to Dante, to Thomas Aquinas, to Michael O'Brien. She's also very familiar with the other Inkling's books, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, and can compare and contrast the three with ease.
I found this Sleeping Dragons book, written as a journey in a creatively non-fiction way, to be a confirmation of what I'd only half understood about the Harry Potter series before. I found myself smiling, laughing, and agreeing through virtually every point made.
I believe that if you have an interest in Harry Potter's deeper meaning, if you are concerned about your children reading Harry Potter because of what might or might not be in the series, if you've tried to prove to friends or relatives that Harry Potter is OK, but without really having evidence in hand to prove it: you do now. This is the book. This book has all the evidence.
Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? is entertaining and fun whilst being educational all at the same time. Having read aloud all the Harry Potter books (to my children), re-read to myself, listened to all the audio tapes and seen all 5 movies, I thoroughly enjoyed this insightful book full of new discoveries, revealing clues, and showing J.K.Rowling's influences and intentions that I had not picked-up on or known about before. In addition to being an avid Tolkien and C.S. Lewis fan, which is an extra bonus in reading this book, I really gained a new level of appreciation for J.K. Rowling herself and what she has accomplished with the Harry Potter books. However, as is mentioned in the books opening "Warning" it would be advisable to have at least read all of the Harry Potter Septology but not completely necessary (That is if you don't mind spoilers). Whatever your Harry Potter level, I believe, Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? offers something extra for the very `age-diverse' Harry Potter fan base. This broad-base appeal doesn't just work because of all the meticulous research on Harry Potter and its author but is driven forward by Nancy's appealing, sometimes humorous and highly witty narrative.
The narrative style that drives the book begins at `a small stone bridge over the babbling creek' ....to several points in between, finally ending up in a `cavern with hidden doors.' We as readers are asked to be part of the journey, occasionally asking questions, and given some freedom to decipher meaning before given each and every secret. Because of this narrative style this book can offer more appeal for much more of Harry Potter fan-base. After all, what made the series so universally appealing (One reviewer has apparently forgotten this pretty basic fact about the Harry Potter books) is that it's so fun to read for kids of all ages. Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? is not just another dry and boring Harry Potter reference manual or author thesis that was written for intellectually elite adults. Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? is much more than that and gives a wider base of Harry Potter fans the option to appreciate deeper layers and textures of the Harry Potter series.
Nancy Solon Villaluz quite effectively balances her well researched Harry Potter facts and data, never bogging us down with them, and provides us with the clear Christian influence that JK Rowling textured Harry Potter with, all this while keeping it fun and whimsical. Does Harry Potter Tickle Sleeping Dragons? is a journey well worth going on. I very much look forward to getting a ticket for the next part of the journey: Does Harry Potter Tickle Waking Dragons? Jeff Riley (Parent/Teacher)-
I applaud her research & thank her most emphatically for using real quotes, but her insights into JKR's beliefs & motives are really her own impressions which she doesn't appear to have the courage to admit to & I don't need some condescending author telling me how to go on my "journey" thru JKR's mind. It's got pluses & minuses & you have to take them both to get the value of the book. Oh - one other thing & this is definitely not exclusive of villaluz - whatever JKR's religious or spirirtual beliefs - the values she outlines over & over in Harry Potter are NOT just Christian beliefs! I am so sick & tired of so-called Christians acting like they have a monoply on the Divine. Harry Potter empahsizes MORAL values common to EVERY religion known to man & it's time we stopped playing that pseudo holier than thou game. Morals don't belong to Christians, they belong to everybody. Think about that the next time you want to stop Muslims from healing from 911 because their countrymen are the ones being bombed daily & yes all this IS related, because the way we think is the way we behave & the way we treat others - & that's no fiction! S.P. Thomas.