Harry Potter’s latest and (fingers crossed) last outing hits store shelves on Saturday, and it wouldn’t be a Harry Potter release without non-stop navel gazing about the series. But 10 years in, is the magic still there? Both the Washington Post and the New York Times demolish the myth that Potter books have kick started a generation of new readers (guess what? Reading rates continue to decline in older readers at the exact same rate as before the introduction of Potter), while one Sydney columnist pleads for this to truly be the end of Potter and Pals.
Britain’s Royal Mail just announced a new set of Harry Potter stamps, while Ultra-Orthodox lawmakers in Israel are decrying the release of the book on Shabbat with winning quotes such as “We don’t have to be dragged like monkeys after the world with this subculture, and certainly not while violating our holy Shabbat” (Avraham Ravitz of the United Torah Judaism Party).
Update: Apparently the book has already made it on to the Torrent sites, and the Something Awful forum goons have compiled a massive list of spoilers. YesButNoButYes puts together the biggest right here.
Update 2: The Telegraph weighs in on Harry Potter & The War on Terror.