Read: August 2001
So says Professor McGanagall in the first chapter of the first book in the series that has become the biggest brand in publishing history. A prophetic statement, or at least so it seems in hindsight. But what is often forgotten in the cacophony of fandom which surrounds Harry Potter is that The Philosopher's Stone was initially successful for the simple reason that it captured people's imagination. It takes you firmly by the hand and in 220 exciting pages inducts you into a world so complete with folklore and interesting characters and history and magic that you never wish to leave. I was hooked within this first chapter, and have never looked back since. This is charming, exciting and yes, the word cannot be avoided, magical fiction which has enriched our world a thousandfold. These books have kept me company when I have been lonely, and made me squeal and leap with excitement and joy. The midnight launches have been some of the most enjoyable nights I have spent in my life. For all of this, and so much more, I am grateful to The Philosopher's Stone and all the books which have followed it.
If you haven't yet read it then I am sure my words wont make you suddenly run out and purchase a copy, but I will just say this: you have no idea what you are missing out on. Life is too short to deprive yourself of the Harry Potter experience.
8.5 out of 10