Sartre was right, hell is other people. As I’ve confessed before, I’m not a Harry head. My kid is seven and too young for these books, and I’m too old for them, so I’ve yet to take the plunge (I assume we’ll get to it together in the next few years). Regardless, I was shocked and dismayed and downright angry to learn that some jackass with a digicam (O’ for the days of film) somehow got their dirty paws on an early copy of Deathly Hallows, photographed 495 pages—including the ending—and mounted them on the web (I won’t list the site). WTF is wrong with people? It’s mind boggling. This wonderful thing that has brought so many kids to reading and brought so many parents and kids together through a book has been ruined. Why would anybody want to do that? Publisher Scholastic isn’t confirming that the whole thing a hoax and the pages are a fake, but they haven’t said it is either, and I’ll bet you dollars to dog biscuits it’s the real deal.
I hope that whoever propagated this literary terrorism (ok, that might be a bit much) is tracked down and strung up by their Buster Browns. Besides the fans, they screwed with an author’s life work, which has brought great joy to the world when it’s so desperately needed. She also has more money than god (which is slightly less than Paul McCartney but more than George Lucas) and no doubt would be willing to shell out a portion of it to have these bozos tossed into the darkest dungeon forever. And I hope she does (sic ‘em, Jo!).
Less nefarious but equally surprising is this piece from the LA Times by way of NY Newsday, which claims that this last Potter, which should sell in record numbers, nonetheless, won’t bring much profit to Amazon, B&N.com, etc. It seems these online booksellers are playing such a dangerous game of one-upmanship on offering the biggest discount that they’re selling the book for pennies more than what they paid for it. And these mega-discounts will steal sales away from the indie bookshops that can’t afford to match them, so they lose out too.
So, this book will sell millions upon millions of copies, yet make very little profit for booksellers. Makes as little sense as the spoiler people.