News 12 at 11, July 20, 2007
AUGUSTA, Ga.---Harry Potter hysteria isn't just happening here, but all over the world. Fans from London to Tel Aviv waited all day to grab a copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
At the release in London tonight, fans waited out in the rain and Harry's creator, J.K. Rowling, gave a midnight reading to 500 competition-winning children in the grand Victorian surroundings of London's Natural History Museum.
But the hype doesn't end there, here at home, the countdown is still underway
Fans are sitting on the floors of bookstores all over the CSRA, anxiously awaiting for the clock to strike 12. And their excitement is hard to contain.
"My life forms around it." says 13-year-old fan Devon Baumgardner.
"I can't believe today is the day!" squeals 15-year old Kristan Shufford, who was lucky enough to grab the first spot in line.
The books can't be unboxed or sold until one minute after midnight, but that didn't stop a number of bewitched fans from lining up early for their chance at owning the final spellbinding chapter.
"I love Harry Potter! It's not just for kids!" cries 24-year-old fan Suzanne Venable.
Soon to be new mom Mendy Grant was due to give birth yesterday,
but her little muggle's late arrival gives her a chance to be a part of the mayhem. " I'm very excited. I don't know if I'll be able to read it all, but I'm very excited."
Some are so excited, they're even dressing the part. "I'm a member of Gryffindor!" exclaims 11-year-old Justin Singletary while pointing to his robe. Others came armed with their quibblers and wands.
It's these kind of fans are giving a whole new meaning to characters coming to life
But how does one boy wizard manage to bewitch such a large audience??
"Fantasy. A world that isn't this one." explains Venable.
Baumgardner has her own thoughts on the subject. "I love how she relates characters in a made up world to us now. There are so many differences but we are so alike."
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows is the seventh and final book of the series and author J.K. Rowling promises all secrets will be revealed.
But no matter what happens, the true magic lies in one boy's ability to cast such a spell.
"I'll probably fall on the floor and start crying when I get the book!" screams Shufford with excitement.
Part of the Potter magic is the billions of dollars the story has made for its author, the publishing industry and the movie business.
Those millions of fans around the world have paid billions of dollars for books. The Potter books now account for nearly 10-percent of the scholastic book company sales. The publisher expects the new book to become the fastest-selling in history. That's a record currently held by the sixth Harry Potter book.