I have been reading less and less short stories lately (and not liking it at all.) So this is may be a day late, but I am participating after two weeks in Short Stories on Wednesday, a bookish meme hosted at Risa’s Bread Crumb Reads. (This is also a part of Peril of the Short Story for the R.I.P. Challenge – I suppose it fits the theme.)
My story this week is a wonderfully gruesome tale from J. K. Rowling’s The Tales of Beedle the Bard, and my favourite one of the five popular children’s fables of the Wizarding World. The Warlock’s Hairy Heart is a dark fairy-tale with a tragic ending, resembling a Brothers Grimm tale! In a way, the story has the strongest message.
A handsome and skilled young warlock, who has all the riches of the world, views love and vulnerability as a weakness. So he finds a way to escape it. The warlock uses Dark Magic to lock away his heart in a dungeon. But separating his heart from his body doesn’t make him more powerful like he wishes; instead he turns inhuman and is either despised or pitied by everyone else. The heart itself, locked away from its natural place, turns black and shrunken, covered with hair – like a beast. The savage heart seeks what it can never gain, a whole human heart. The warlock tries to correct his mistake, but it is too late by then. The warlock’s secret ultimately leads to his own destruction, along with a poor young girl who falls in love with him.
In his notes, Dumbledore aptly describes this story to handle “one of the greatest, and least acknowledged, temptations of magic: the quest for invulnerability.” By dividing what is clearly not meant to be divided (Body and heart. Rings a bell, doesn’t it? It’s similar to separating body and soul, and we all know where that gets you!) and by going against nature, the warlock loses his chance even for redemption.
This is the only story from the book that I found more fascinating than Dumbledore’s notes of it. I would have loved it so much more as a kid. I mean, what’s not to love about a bedtime story that can give you nightmares?
September has been an incredibly bookish month. I started reading the classics, that I’d planned to read in August; I am done reading more than half of the 2011 Booker prize shortlist; I participated in some fun challenges and memes; I received books to review; I read many essays, short stories, and even poems (but more on that later!)
With my birthday right on the third day of the month, I got many wonderful books, without having to spend a single penny on them. And they just kept coming. Until today – and now there are seven. A huge thanks to all the generous gift-givers! Now I own seven books that I am desperate to read. I will have to wait till October to finally get to read all od them, though, considering that I’m supposed to study for my exams as we speak (not that we are speaking right now; but I’d rather write it and explain this than not write it at all.) These are seven of the most awesome gifts I have received in my nineteen years of existence.
One might say I am exaggerating the awesomeness. In which case, I would suggest one to look carefully at the photograph. Yes, that’s right; it says The Tales of Beedle the Bard. Followed by the red and green books, that are Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through the Ages. Which would mean I am actually understating the awesomeness, for I fear I might start acting like one of those crazy, squeaky fan-girls if I don’t. Enjoying J. K. Rowling all over again; now that’s something I’m definitely looking forward to. October is surely going to be a hell of a month!
I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Part 2) this morning and I was very excited about it like everybody else! I wish I’d written a post about it beforehand like everyone else, because then I would have had many great things to say.
I never liked the Harry Potter movies, because they were hardly ever like the books! Unlike most people I know, I find it very hard to judge a movie based on a book without comparing it to the book it is based on. It sounds crazy! Whenever I read a book, I play the scenes in my mind; well, I expect everyone does that. Why else would I watch the Harry Potter movies when I already know what’s going to happen – certainly not for the absolutely amazing cast. It’s as if they want to remove all the very essential parts of the book to replace them with unnecessary, cheesy and sometimes comical (the one where Harry and Hermione dance) scenes. Still. I loyally go watch the movies every time and they don’t once fail to disappoint me.
The first half of the movie really made me wonder if it was going to be different this time! The story line was almost maintained and there were no weird special effects (except for the Imperius Curse. Why- no, how- was that necessary?) It’s shocking how much bad they can do in about the last half hour of the movie!! In the second half – the movie went from ‘almost awesome’ to ‘ridiculous’ – well, at least for me.
Ralph Fiennes was an expected disaster, Alan Rickman, an unexpected one, and did I mention there was a bit too much action? And don’t even tell me there were some really great scenes. It’s Harry Potter, for god’s sake. They aren’t exactly doing us a favour by giving us “some” good scenes!
I’ll always hate that Harry Potter had to end. What I hate now is that it had to end this way.