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Like everyone else this weekend, Friday night at midnight found me with inked sigils upon my body, attire of coarse robes, and silly-looking glasses. In other words, it was a normal Friday evening. But on Saturday, I too joined America in picking up the latest Potter book, and I read it in one sitting. After which point, I could hardly walk after not having eaten nor napped in the afternoon as is my wont.
This one departs from earlier novels and takes the series in a new direction. Harry Potter, having graduated and decided against wizard graduate school or a career in wizard fast food, returns home to Brooklyn to open a new storefront affiliate of Hogwarts. Thus, at Hogwarts High School, he becomes a teacher and mentor to a group of loveable losers called the Sweathogwarts. Although losers in the muggle world, the Sweathogwarts have power in the ways of disco magic and Potter begins to teach them to use their powers for good and not merely peeking into the girls’ locker room.
But evil follows Harry across the ocean, and the Sweatwarthogs must confront an evil called the Woodman who’s working for He Must Not Be Named As The Confidential Source. I don’t want to give too much away of the plot, but needless to say the Sweathogwarts work together, with Harry offering guidance, and use the power of their authenticity, ethnicity, magic, and ‘fros to dispatch the Woodman.
Rumor had it that someone would die in this book, and the rumor has become fact: Near the end, Malfoy comes into the apartment he has leased in Brooklyn to be evil’s base of operations. He finds a wand on the counter and as he’s looking at it, a nervous Barbarino comes out of the bathroom. Malfoy turns Barbarino into Swiss cheese.
To lessen the impact, the book ends with Potter telling his wife Hermy a humorous anecdote about his great uncle’s cousin who owned a fish shop. Perhaps this foreshadowing indicates that the next book deals with evil under the sea? Let the speculation commence!