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on 24 September 2003
The inestimable J.K. Rowling produced this cute pair of books for the charity Comic Relief. Written in a tongue in cheek manner, these two books claim to come directly from Hogwarts! Quidditch Through the Ages is a library book that gives the evolution of Quidditch from its inception, and tells everything about how it's played. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a textbook that discusses magical creatures in J.K. Rowlings world, treating them all most seriously, and telling you a surprising amount about them.
These are great books, and a must-have for any Harry Potter fan! They are good, light-hearted books that give the reader a good glimpse into J.K. Rowling's world. (Plus, I must say that I learned a lot about Quidditch!) I highly recommend these books!
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Although not a necessary addition to everyone’s personal Harry Potter library, these two little books are quite interesting and a lot of fun to read. They are both quite short, totaling less than sixty five pages apiece, but they are wonderfully put together and made to look like copies of real books from the Hogwarts library. None other than Albus Dumbledore himself writes the introduction to each book, explaining how and why these books are being made available to Muggles for the first time and explaining how proceeds from each book go directly to a fund, set up in Harry Potter’s name by Comic Relief UK and author J.K. Rowling, which is dedicated to help children in need throughout the world.
Quidditch Through the Ages, penned by Quidditch expert Kennilworthy Whisp explains the ultimate sport of wizards from top to bottom, giving the centuries-old history of the game as it has evolved. First and foremost, he explains why wizards and witches employ brooms to fly on in the first place, and then he proceeds to give an account of the changing rules of the game from its early days of primitive baskets set atop poles to the standardized and world-sweeping format of today. Of most significance and interest is the story of how the Golden Snitch was introduced into the sport. Different strategies and maneuvers are named and explained, the thirteen Quidditch teams of England and Ireland are identified, some of the seven hundred types of fouls are explained, and some of the most memorable games and individual performances are detailed (including the Tutshill Tornados’ Roderick Plumpton’s amazing snag of the Golden Snitch only three and a half seconds into a game back in 1921).
Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander is a compendium of all the fantastic beasts currently known, from the Acromantula to the Yeti. Prior to the actual listings, Scamander explains the criteria by which some beings have come to be labeled beasts (it’s more complicated than you might think) and devotes some time to the obvious question as to why Muggles seem to spot such creatures only rarely. Each listing also carries the classification assigned each beast by the Ministry of Magic, which is important information given that these beasts range from the harmless to the controllable to the incredibly dangerous. Along with fascinating descriptions of the animals we have already encountered in the Harry Potter books, there are some real jewels of information included here, solving several Muggle mysteries such as that of the true identity of the Loch Ness Monster. Fantastic Beasts is a copy of Harry Potter’s own personal copy of the book, and its margins are dotted with little notes ranging from the mundane to the bitingly funny written by Harry, Ron, as well as Hermione. Now, if we could only get our hands on A History of Hogwarts; I’m sure Hermione has a copy they can use for the printing of a Muggle edition.
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on 13 March 2009
Fantastic beasts is an exelent read with some of the creatures that appear in the Harry Potter video games. It is based from Harry Potter's own copy of the book and includes scribbles made by Harry and his friends! Quidditch through the ages is also a good read, it is based from a copy in the Hogwarts School library. It has interesting facts about quidditch and broomsticks.
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on 7 February 2010
I bought this for my son who has just torn through the 7 Potter books and was desperate to read more. These little books were perfect for him as they give a real insight into the world of Hogwarts. I would very much recommend this to someone keen on Potter and friends.
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on 30 January 2003
These books, mentioned throughout the series, are a must have for all serious Harry Potter fans. There is a much more in depth explanation of all of the finer points of the wizarding world. Accompanied by witty comments and annecdotes from characters in the books it is a light hearted and explanatory set - no more wondering exactly what a puffskein is or how to take on a Norwegian Ridgeback dragon. Definitely not for muggles!
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on 27 September 2009
in the Books Harry plays Quidditch, in Quidditch Though the Ages you get an entire history of Quidditch to satisfy any questions you may have about it.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them gives you an insight to creatures that appear in the books but no information is mentioned or not enough, Another fun aspect about this is Harrys book and contains his, Rons and hermiones scribbles adding jokes and just something to distract you if you find the books getting a bit boring.
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on 2 June 2010
Released for the first time (well, to the general Muggle public), here's a copy of one of Harry Potter's schoolbooks from the Library of Hogwarts itself.
A warning: If you rip, tear, shred, bend, fold, deface, disfigure, smear, smudge, throw, drop, or in any other manner damage, mistreat, or show lack of respect towards this book, the consequences will be as awful as it is within my power to make them.
~ Irma Pince, Hogwarts Librarian

The book's only 55 pages each, but the print is very small and crammed with remarkably interesting information that fills out the background of Harry Potter's world. Headmaster Albus Dumbledore himself provides introductions to these special editions, warning us of a Thief's Curse if we were to read the book in a shop without actually purchasing it and of his difficulty in actually convincing Madam Pince to lend a Hogwarts Library book for Muggle consumption ("I was forced to prise her fingers individually from the spine").

"Quidditch Through the Ages" by "Kennilworthy Whisp" (as published by WhizzHard Books of Diagon Alley) shows how this magical sport (along with similar ones) has evolved, and also provides a history of magic broom technology with a good deal of supplementary material shedding light on Wizard-Muggle relations throughout history. Indeed Quidditch proved to be so popular that the playing of it was outlawed by the Wizards' Council "anywhere near any place where there is the slightest chance that a Muggle might be watching or we'll see how well you can play whilst chained to a dungeon wall."

Included as well was the mention of Quidditch referees' job once considered as a task for only the bravest since they have a tendency to disappear and show up in the Sahara Desert. Not to be missed is the detailed history of the Quidditch Teams of Britain & Ireland, most especially Ron's favorite, the Chudley Cannons. Their club motto was changed from "We shall conquer" to "Let's all just keep our fingers crossed and hope for the best."
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on 20 November 2003
These are some of the most imaginative books I have read in a long time, including Harry Potter itself of course. JK Rowling's imagination must be the size of a universe to have so many complex ideas. Both books are well worth it and they donate money to Comic Relief.
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on 30 October 2003
These books certainly are a good read, they tell you alot about the history of certain aspects of magic, although dont be fooled by the image of them, they are in fact only about 50 pages long EACH!!!
A good read but just to short...
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on 7 April 2010
Great little books. My son is a massive Harry Potter fan and since the end of the series he needs these little 'fixes' . They're super fun and brilliantly written, as is everything by JK Rowing. Highly reccommended for Harry Potter enthusiasts.
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