For twelve long years, the dread fortress of Azkaban held an infamous prisoner named Sirius Black. Convicted of killing thirteen people with a single curse, he was said to be the heir apparent to the Dark Lord, Voldemort.
Now he has escaped, leaving only two clues as to where he might be headed: Harry Potter’s defeat of You-Know-Who was Black’s downfall as well. And the Azkaban guards heard Black muttering in his sleep, “He’s at Hogwarts . . . he’s at Hogwarts.”
Harry Potter isn’t safe, not even within the walls of his magical school, surrounded by his friends. Because on top of it all, there may well be a traitor in their midst.
This is one of my favorite books out of the Harry Potter series, because it makes you think you know what’s happening before spinning you around and spitting you out in a completely different direction. It’s also the last Harry Potter book that feels episodic - meaning that for younger readers who aren’t ready to get into the longer, darker Harry Potters books later in the series, this is a good place to hit pause on the books.
J.K. Rowling is the author of the record-breaking, multi-award-winning Harry Potter novels. Loved by fans around the world, the series has sold over 500 million copies, been translated into 80 languages, and made into 8 blockbuster films. She has written three companion volumes in aid of charity: Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (in aid of Comic Relief and Lumos), and The Tales of Beedle the Bard (in aid of Lumos), as well as a film script inspired by Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which marked the start of a five-film series to be written by the author. She has also collaborated on a stage play, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two, which opened in London’s West End in the summer of 2016 and on Broadway in early 2018. In 2012, J.K. Rowling’s digital company Pottermore was launched, where fans can enjoy news, features and articles, as well as original content from J.K. Rowling. She has also written The Casual Vacancy, a novel for adult readers, and the Strike crime series, written under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. As well as receiving an OBE for services to children’s literature, she has received many awards and honours, including an OBE and Companion of Honour, France’s Légion d’honneur, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award.
What does J.K. Rowling love about Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban?
“I was looking forward to writing the third book from the start of the first because that’s when Professor Lupin appears.”
What was the writing experience like for Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban?
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban was “the best writing experience I ever had. Of the five books that are published, writing Azkaban was the easiest, and in some ways I think it shows. I was in a very comfortable place when I wrote (number) three: Immediate financial worries were over, and press attention wasn’t yet by any means excessive.”
What do the dementors represent?
Ann Treneman asked Rowling if the dementors represent depression, to which Rowling replied, “Yes. That is exactly what they are. It was entirely conscious. And entirely from my own experience. Depression is the most unpleasant thing I have ever experienced. It is that absence of being able to envisage that you will ever be cheerful again. The absence of hope. That very deadened feeling, which is so very different from feeling sad. Sad hurts but it’s a healthy feeling. It’s a necessary thing to feel. Depression is very different.”
Does Rowling have any regrets from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban?
“The Marauder’s Map subsequently became something of a bane to its true originator (me), because it allowed Harry a little too much freedom of information.”
When was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban first published?
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban was first published on July 8, 1999 by Bloomsbury and then in the United States on September 8, 1999 by Scholastic Inc.
How many copies of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban have been sold?
Over 65 million copies have been sold worldwide, and 68,000 copies were sold in the UK within three days of its release, which made it the fastest-selling book in Britain of all time (1999).
How long did it take Rowling to write Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban?
Rowling wrote the book in just one year.
Was Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban a New York Times Best Seller?
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban was on the New York Time’s best-sellers list, along with the first two books in the series, but this third book is what pushed the New York Times to create a separate best-sellers list exclusively for children’s literature.
How’s the movie adaptation?
Rated PG, run time of 2h 22min, and rated a 7.9/10 on IMDb (where you can also find the trailer and information about the cast).
Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 90% on the Tomatometer and a 86% Audience Score.
John Williams is the composer for the magical music in the film, and there are Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in Concert performances put on by CineConcerts of the full-length movie screening with a live orchestra.
“The Prisoner of Azkaban” may be the best “Harry Potter” book yet.
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