Monday, February 5, 2007

"Helpline for fearful fans of Harry Potter"

The headline, which I copied straight into my title, is quite sensationalizing. But I think it's something to be concerned about rather than to wahwah about.

I got this news off Mugglenet, one of the top, if not the top Harry Potter fansite. They linked it to the link you see above.

While the thought of an 8-year-old pouring out his grief on the telephone and the counsellor on the other end saying 'Mmmm... and how do you feel about this?' is mildly amusing, I also think it is a mark of how the world has evolved. Young readers possibly getting depressed and suicidal after reading the ending to the book just because it was a popular series they had loved and embraced for probably more than half their lives is quite morbidly fascinating. I wonder if any researchers will be standing by when the book gets published.

This move, though, shows that Waterstone actually cares for the possibly adverse effects of its publications. No doubt the possibility is very real, but it's nonetheless no small sum to have such an initiative on such a big scale, especially since the move is just a pre-emptive one.

Anyhow, I wish Waterstone all the best.

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