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20 July 2008

Harry Potter and the Fanfiction of Better

So it's a year since Harry Potter mania peaked and then disappeared. We all got over it. We read the epilogue and said "ORLY, JK? Albus Severus? For cereal?". And now a year on most of us look back on those years with a slight nostalgic confusion - what were we thinking?

Except for me. (and Hank).

I am more obsessed with Harry Potter than I ever was when HP mania was around. I'm sure you all remember my snarky comments about plotholes and adverbs. I read the books, I enjoyed the books, then I enjoyed criticising the books. It was my Thing.

So what's the deal?

The deal, my friends, is Sarah Rees Brennan.

She's a YA author. She has a book of her very own. I haven't read it yet, but I'm sure it's excellent.

She also writes Harry Potter fanfic.

And it's AMAZING.

It is a hundred squillion times better than anything JK ever wrote. She understands the characters better than JK does. And she certainly understands romance better than JK does.

Anyway. The end of the most recent chapter made me squee like a fangirl. I WANT MORE.

(here's chapter one, for the interested)


Jellyfish said...

WHEN will Hank Green realize he needs to marry you? Gah, that boy is too damn cute for words.

(leaving me free for Tennant, naturally, I am willing to rehabilitate him from his present Peter Davison-induced mind control state thingy)

You're so right about this story, it's v clever. Speshally the stuff with Charlie, Bill and the twin Weasleys. Haven't caught up to you yet sorry.

And whaddaya mean, nostalgic confusion? Who is nostalgically confused? NOT I SAID THE FLY.

Sue Bursztynski said...

I remember those snarky comments you made after HP7. I was going to respond in the CYL newsletter, but never got around to it. :-)
I felt the novel could have ended without the epilogue, though not for the reasons you suggested at the time. The characters married each other because that was who they had lived and suffered with and knew. It was NOT because they were being snooty wizards who had something against Muggles. What - after three books of URST between Ron and Hermione they should have dumped each other and taken the trouble to marry Muggles? Harry should have dropped Ginny for some unknown Muggle girl who wasn't in the novels? Just to show he wasn't prejudiced? :-)

Dudley didn't get involved for a number of reasons, but even if he could have gone to Scotland and got somewhere near Hogwarts, he would have found nothing but ruins, as would any other Muggle. I felt it was enough that there was a simple reconciliation. There was hope for him. I liked that it was kept simple.

As for your suggestion that someone's fan fiction was better than the original, there are probably plenty of fans out there who think the same about fan fiction in general. It resolves your frustrations with holes in the plot of your favourite TV show/writer, it lets you explore the universe further with a 'what if...?". I know: I used to write the stuff myself before people began to pay me to write books. Media fan fiction, though - I never wrote anything based on novels and never would.

But understanding characters better than the person who created them? (Scratch head in puzzlement) Well, it's a typical fannish attitude, but I can't say I agree with it. Sorry, Lili!