Harry Potter

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    How Harry Potter Ruined My Life This Week

    The title of this post may be a bit dramatic, but I will share about the series of unfortunate events that happened around Harry Potter this past week. Last Saturday, my sister-in-law had a Harry Potter-themed birthday party. She decorated her house with wizarding decor – complete with broomsticks,...
  • The Middle of the Story

    Warning: Spoilers ahead for classics you should have already read! I didn’t want to write for the blog this week. I’m going through a very difficult situation at work that has me feeling like I’ve been turned inside out. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I can’t see...
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    On Studying Fear

    This is, oddly enough, an article about writing an article.  A former student of mine who now edits the university newspaper asked if I would write an OpEd piece for the upcoming Halloween issue. Touched (but mainly flattered), I accepted immediately, not considering the ramifications of my commitment. I...
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    J. K. Rowling & Pseudonymity

    Did you hear the news? J. K. Rowling wrote a new book! When I heard this I was absolutely thrilled. But there’s just one thing. J. K. Rowling used a pseudonym. Instead of using her famous pen name “J. K. Rowling” for her new detective novel, The Cuckoo’s Calling, the...
  • The Casual Vacancy: Revisited

    Two weeks ago I wrote my review of The Casual Vacancy (CV) by J. K. Rowling. On the whole I wasn’t too keen on it and there I explain why. One thing that I didn’t want to do at the time was read other reviews of Rowling’s new book....
  • The Casual Vacancy: A Review

    J. K. Rowling has written a new book. Did you notice something in that sentence? Those who know my affection for the Harry Potter series should immediately recognize that my opening sentence ended, not with five exclamation points, but with a period. Sadly, I am not too thrilled about...
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    Hufflepuff for the Gospel

    Every fan of Harry Potter has envisioned themselves as belonging to one of the four houses of Hogwarts. Ask any fan and they’ll tell you. For myself, I know I am not courageous enough to be Gryffindor and so I’ve always identified with Ravenclaw; not because I am particularly...
  • Harry Potter Conference: A Review

    Last week was the first Conference engaging with the Harry Potter series at a high academic level.  We know, hard to believe huh?!  Well, yours truly from The Two Cities, John Anthony Dunne and Nathaniel Warne, were among the lucky few selected to give papers at this landmark event. ...
  • Harry Potter & Literature Conference at St Andrews: A Brand of Fictional Magic

    This Thursday and Friday (May 17 and 18) the School of English at the University of St Andrews will be hosting an international conference on Harry Potter called, “A Brand of Fictional Magic: Reading Harry Potter as Literature.” Today I am leaving Las Vegas to return to Scotland for...
  • Yearly Round-Up

    2011 has come to a close. It has been a great year and there are a lot of fun things to look forward to in 2012 (who isn’t excited for The Dark Knight Rises or The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey?). Here at The Two Cities we are very excited for...
  • Time Travel & The First Christmas

    Today (Dec 13) I am flying home after my first term at St Andrews. It feels like time has sped up ever since I arrived. An hour seems a bit shorter than I remembered in the States. Whole weeks have felt like insignificant blocks of time that pass by...
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    Harry Potter & Pagan Issues

    In light of Nathaniel Warne’s recent post on Harry Potter, I thought I’d supplement his excellent post with additional issues related to Harry Potter’s much needed vindication among conservative Christians. Growing up everyone told me that Harry Potter was evil so I never read the books.  Although to be...
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    Harry Potter & Moral Issues: Guest Post

    It is hugely disappointing to me that I still have to defend my love for the Harry Potter series to other Christians.  In good Two Cities fashion of “reconciling Evangelicals with the ‘Bad Guys,’”  I will give two reasons why the Harry Potter series is not a threat to...