Magic of 'Harry Potter' draws young readers to bookstore

By BETH CRACE State Journal Staff Writer Published:

By 10:30 p.m. Friday they were packed in the coffee shop next door, sitting Indian-style before a television set, playing chess or coloring pensively.

Others snuck away outside and grabbed a table on the sidewalk in the unseasonably cool June evening.

But the air was warmer inside Poor Richard's Bookstore downtown where the diehard Harry Potter fans crowded close to the cash register counting down to the 12:01 a.m. Saturday release of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

The new book marks the fifth installment of international best-selling Potter series. Young readers from Frankfort to London packed bookstores eagerly Friday after three years of intense anticipation of latest Potter adventure.

"I'm very good at reading, but I'm not good at waiting," proclaimed 8-year-old Lacy Wallace, who was crowned champion of the Harry Potter trivia bowl moments earlier.

Lacy, a student at Capital Day School, has read all four Potter books, re-reading the first one earlier Friday to brush up on her wizardry knowledge, she said. By 11:30 p.m. she was hanging out near the counter, hoping to be the first in line.

Lacy, along with the rest of the tightly-packed crowd, represented the most ardent of Frankfort's young literati, draped in cloaks and capes, sporting Potter's famed dark rimmed eyeglasses and wizard caps. The young readers were up past most of their bedtimes as the waited to purchase British author's J.K. Rowling's much anticipated next book.

"They're very adventurous. They have a good message," said Carmen Amato, whose children Mary Grace, 7, and Alex, 10, are both Potter fans.

For more on this story, see the latest State Journal.

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