I am the 'Harry Potter' generation. When I was in school the books suddenly flooded the book bags of my peers; and I... a little stubborn at times, refused to read it - guffawing at the idea of a little boy-wizard with a lightening shaped scar on his forehead running around a massive school of magic.
Whilst my friends were reading Harry Potter, I turned to the likes of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy (which had come out a few years earlier). I then, through the rest of school ignored the subsequent Harry Potter novels BUT always watched the movies.
See, that was the hypocrisy in it. I didn't and hadn't read the books. In fact, as a general rule I try to avoid film adaptations of novels until I get around to reading the book. With Harry Potter I broke my rule and devoured the films - in fact, I would watch each film in the cinema - eagerly awaiting the next instalment. Once the last movie came out I truly found myself feeling a little lost. The anticipation that I would feel at the end of each film was gone, and I felt deflated and underwhelmed.
I evaded and buried my head in the sand when it came to J.K Rowling's novels... but no more. I recently received the whole set of Harry Potter as audiobooks narrated by the BRILLIANT Jim Dale. I have already started the first one and I am enjoying it - in fact, I'm even laughing out loud at times. Jim Dale's narration is just absolutely spot on, he differentiates between the voices so much that you know who is speaking before Rowling tells us.
And so, now I feel sorry for myself. I know, ridiculous, but I do! I wish that my stubbornness hadn't prevented me from enjoying these books during my childhood. I just had this absolute need to not follow the crowd or feel coerced in to something that I just dug my heels in. But as a result, from what I've read so far, it may have been a very, very large bookish mistake.