Harry Potter Returns
The fifth installment—finally!
Phoenix Bewitches Readers, Flies off Bookshelves at Lightning Speed
Wednesday, June 25, 2003
Bloomsbury Publishing Plc., who publishes the Potter series, announced 1,777,541 copies of the latest book were sold in the first 24 hours. This number more than quadruples the first-day sales statistics of Phoenix’s predecessor, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which held the previous record with 372,775 copies sold its first day.
American Potter publisher, Scholastic Inc., also released enormous first-day sales figures for what is considered to be the largest children’s book ever published. Phoenix weighs 2.2 lbs. and runs a lengthy 870 pages (766 pages in the British edition), encompassing some 255,000 words. Not deterred by its size, Scholastic estimates that 5 million copies of the book were purchased by eager fans in the first 24 hours.
Between the two publishers, 13 million copies of the book were printed before its release and Scholastic has announced that it will print an additional 800,000 copies of the book in order to meet the large demand for the book, bringing their total number of books printed to 9.3 million. The size of the initial printings was seen as unprecedented, but with 192 million of Rowling’s first four books published in 200 countries and 55 languages worldwide, their popularity is hard to deny. One copy of Phoenix was sold for every 60 people living in the US and UK in the first 24 hours alone, and Barnes and Noble reported they sold nearly 80 copies a second. The British WHSmith chain expects Phoenix to be ten times more popular than Goblet. So far, readers are enchanted and critics impressed.
Thousands of New Harry Books Stolen in Late Night Heist
Wednesday, June 18, 2003
Tuesday, January 28, 2003
The book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, runs a lengthy 896 pages, 38 chapters, and 255,000 words. The publishers, Bloomsbury and Scholastic, decided to put the book on sale on a Saturday so kids wouldn't miss school waiting in line to buy the long-awaited novel.
The book opens:
"The hottest day of the summer so far was drawing to a close and a drowsy silence lay over the large, square houses of Privet Drive."
And here's a snippet from later in the book:
"It is time," he said, "for me to tell you what I should have told you five years ago, Harry. Please sit down. I am going to tell you everything."
Kids should consider themselves lucky—they only had to wait three years for the vital information.