Today was the day Potter fans have patiently waited for…well, one of the days Potter fans have waited for (we still have the premiere of the last film left!). “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling has finally revealed what her site, Pottermore, actually is.
According to the press release, Pottermore is a site that will have new information on the Potter characters and will also act as a hub where people can buy the “Harry Potter” e-books:
For this groundbreaking collaborative project, J.K. Rowling has written extensive new material about the characters, places and objects in the much-loved stories, which will inform, inspire and entertain readers as they journey through the storylines of the books. Pottermore will later incorporate an online shop where people can purchase exclusively the long-awaited Harry Potter eBooks, in partnership with J.K. Rowling’s publishers worldwide, and is ultimately intended to become an online reading experience, extending the relevance of Harry Potter to new generations of readers, while still appealing to existing fans. As the Pottermore Shop develops, it is intended that it should include further products designed specifically for Harry Potter fans, offering a potential outlet for Sony products and services related to Pottermore. In keeping with Harry Potter’s international appeal, the site will launch in English, French, Italian, German and Spanish, with more languages to follow.
In the new website, the storyline will be brought to life with sumptuous newly-commissioned illustrations and interactive ‘Moments’ through which you can navigate, starting with the first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s (Sorcerer’s) Stone. On entering, you choose a magic username and begin your experience. As you move through the chapters, you can read and share exclusive writing from J.K. Rowling, and, just as Harry joins Hogwarts, so can you. You visit Diagon Alley, get sorted into a house, cast spells and mix potions to help your house compete for the House Cup.
At a press conference at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, Rowling revealed some key features of the website. In an announcement which will thrill fans, she described how she has brought to life both the Sorting Hat and Ollivanders experiences from her books for the first time on Pottermore, by revealing the questions asked by the Sorting Hat – which places newcomers into their Hogwarts houses according to their characteristics – and the magic behind the Wand Chooser – which finds the right wand for each user from over 33,000 possible combinations. She also revealed glimpses of the new information she has provided on some of the best-loved characters.
The site opens in October, but a few lucky fans will be able to, in Rowling’s words, “help shape the experience” of the site by “just follow[ing] the owl.” What that statement means, according to the site, is that if you visit Pottermore on July 31, you can have a chance to win an opportunity to enter the site early. You can view the video of Rowling explaining the site for yourself below. Also below are some official stills from the site.
As a fan who has almost grown out of the franchise, I have to say that I’m both intrigued and indifferent. What do you think about it? Sound off in the comments section below.