You can read this slim book (only about 65 pages or so, depending on the edition) within a couple of hours-totally easy reading, but also leaves you feeling a bit cheated (this book is very short and simplistic).
“The Tales of Beedle the Bard” by J.K. Rowling is apparently a collection of short stories meant for witch and wizard children, something on the lines of the brothers Grimm or Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales, which us poor Muggles grew up on.
The book consists of 5 stories:
- The Wizard and the Hopping Pot
- The Fountain of Fair Fortune
- The Warlock’s Hairy Heart
- Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump
- The Tale of the Three Brothers
Albus Dumbledore (late principal of Hogwarts Academy) left these tales behind for the Hogwarts Academy, along with a set of notes, where he records his throughts on all these stories. These were later translated into English by Hermione Granger and then collated into this publication.
My thoughts on this book
All stories are uniformly good. The “Tale of the Three Brothers” has an interesting tie-in to the Harry Potter books, and is by association the most interesting story. The rest of the stories do not have any connection with Harry Potter at all.
More than the actual stories, Dumbledore’s commentary is more interesting and provides some flesh to the book. I also liked the illustrations and the general way this book is structured to make it appear genuinely like a book of fairy tales meant for wizards. However, it falls far short when you compare it to the J.R.R. Tolkien Silmarillion series of books, which were totally awesome.
I also would have preferred it to contain a few more stories. Somehow, reading just 5 stories made me feel a little bit cheated. I would definitely not fork up so much cash to buy this book just to look at the pretty pictures.
What I did love was the fact that the book is printed on recycled paper, and that proceeds of the sale of this book goes to the “Children’s High Level Group” charity, which was set up by J.K. Rowling to change the lives of abandoned children living in institutions.
Last word: Strictly one-time reading and for die-hard Harry Potter fans only.