If someone had told me there were secret passages and enchanted maps at Hogwarts, I imagine I would have read Harry Potter a long time ago. Now, I’m only equally delighted at the prospect as my little self would have been, slowly and surely, against all my curmudgeonly better judgement, being lured into the spell this book series has seemed to cast over the entire world.
If this keeps up, I imagine I’ll be quite lost in its charms by the time the week is out.
There are some things that will always win me over when I am reading. Good characters, a thrilling sense of suspense, magical elements combined in a fantastic way I’ve never seen before, believable fights (preferably among snarky thieves), and hidden treasures. And Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban has the last on the list.
It doesn’t really matter to me if there is fabulous wealth to be found at the end of the adventure. The exciting part is knowing the hidden passage exists. Some mysterious, exciting and fabulous thing existing in the face of our ordinary lives. In one of the handful of houses I lived in, there was one I was rather fond of, ladder and all. Each time I moved, the first order of business was to explore the house for a hidden room or attic space. Every good house, in my opinion, should have its secrets.
Of course most of those searches were fruitless. Like the excavation in Bilbo Baggins’ pantry after he disappeared at his birthday party. No treasure to be found.
But looking for it…it’s rather like fireworks exploding unexpectedly in the night sky. Something so purely, innocently wonderful, I forget all the stress and bother and simply laugh, like I did when I was young enough to go crawling in all the tight spaces just to see if I would fit.
Perhaps I can’t ever “solemnly swear I am up to no good,” not in perfect honesty. It doesn’t make the prospect any less thrilling.
Perhaps, after all, I could learn.