We may not have a Time Turner like Hermione to let us fiddle with the past, but Harry Potter fans the world over now have a chance to reach into the future and speak with fellow fans that haven’t even begun their seven year adventure at Hogwarts.
A new fan campaign—started by the Harry Potter fan-site MuggleNet—came up with a pretty simple but beautiful concept: go to your local library or bookstore and leave a message in a Harry Potter book for some future reader to find.
A quick search of #PotterItForward on Twitter turns up many wonderful notes from Muggles and Wizards alike.
If you’d like to be reminded of the unifying magic of these novels, spend some time searching through as many examples as you can find. Like any great story, we find more and more from them each time we reread or re-watch them, but that first time, sitting with a great book or turning down the lights on a movie that you don’t realize will now be a part of you forever, that is one that can never be duplicated (until we all earn an actual memory Charm). While we can all envy those readers, young and old, for whom their Harry Potter adventure is just beginning, now we can also be a part—however small—of wishing them good luck as they depart from Platform 9 and 3/4ths.
Of course, searching the internet is one thing, but I wanted to go out and see if I could find any of these notes myself. First I went to my local library and went through 28 different copies of the novels. No dice. (Although a grown man sitting on the floor of the kids section during the middle of the day flipping through all the Harry Potter books was its own unique reward.)
Then I headed to my nearest Barnes and Noble. Carefully I went through every single copy of J.K. Rowling’s novels, all 86 of them, but alas, not one note from one reader to the next. Though the employees that were side-eyeing me at first did think it was a sweet idea when I explained it to them.
So I decided I would be the first in my area to contribute to PotterItForward. Since I left my note in a book in the kids’ section, I’m going to trust that I won’t be spoiling it for the future First-Year here.
In case you can’t read my admittedly not great handwriting, this is the note I left.
“Before you begin your experience with Harry Potter Id like to tell you about mine. See, I never planned on reading these books, but I did it as a surprise gift for my girlfriend. Well, that was fitting, since Harry Potter is a love story. No, not one of romance, but of friends and family. And my own redhead (you’ll understand) is my best friend, and I love her very much. Harry Potter is one more thing we share. Now I share it with you.”
If you too are a Harry Potter fan, go and share your message with those that just about to begin their entire adventure. It’ll make it just a little bit more magical.
Especially as the world of Harry Potter expands:
What would you say to someone about to pick up his or her first Harry Potter book? Tell us in the comments below, then go put it in a book for someone to find.
(Oh, if you want to yell “spoiler” at me because of the “redhead” thing, you must be in House Slytherin.)
Image: Warner Brothers