LondonNet News Headlines
14/07/03
Byatt Puts Curse on Harry Potter
- Boy wizard series is like a cartoon, says respected author

IN A BATTLE of the authors with double-initial first names, Booker Prize winning writer AS Byatt has laid into the Harry Potter phenomenon and the series' author JK Rowling.

"It is written for people whose imaginative lives are confined to TV cartoons and the exaggerated - more exciting, less threatening - mirror world of soaps, reality TV and celebrity gossip," Byatt said of the Potter series, the fifth instalment of which broke all publishing records when it was released in June.

"They [adult Potter readers] are the inhabitants of urban jungles, not the real wild. They don't have the skills to tell ersatz magic from the real thing."

Byatt said that unlike other famous fantasy books, Harry Potter was "no place for the numinous." Lord of the Rings, in contrast, had seriousness, and Terry Pratchett's Discworld series was intricately written according, Byatt said.



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