By now, much of the world has heard of Harry Potter, the talented boy wizard created by British author J.K. Rowling. The books about him have been selling like hotcakes and enchanting readers everywhere. Harry Potter is no ordinary boy. He's a wizard-in- training at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Imagine taking classes in spells and potions, and learning to use a cauldron and wand instead of spending time in math and reading class.
We first meet 11- year-old Harry in HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE, J.K. Rowling's debut novel. So many people fell in love with this magical adventure that it won just about every children's book prize in England (where it was first published) in 1997 and 1998 and won a ton of fans here in the United States as well.
The second book about Harry, HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS, followed in the first book's footsteps. It has been a smash success since it came out in June 1999.
As you probably guessed, Harry's third year at Hogwarts proved to be a charm, as well. Book 3, HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN, hit bookstores on September 8, 1999 and immediately became a giant hit.
The fourth book about Harry, HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE, was released simultaneously in Britain and the U.S. at exactly midnight on July 8th, The event made news around the globe, and here in the U.S., the books publisher, Scholastic, released 3.8 million copies of the book on that day, and quickly decided to print 3 million.
J.K. Rowling plans to write seven books in the series. She has begun work on Book 5, but there is no telling when she will finish it. She has said in interviews that the new book, most likely called HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX, will be "done when it's done." While you're waiting, you can explore two short companion books Rowling has written and illustrated: FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM and QUIDDITCH THROUGH THE AGES. You'll recognize these as books that Harry and his friends talk about at Hogwarts. These special volumes are being published March 12, 2001 with the proceeds going to the Harry's Books fund, a charity that helps children in need around the world.