Google search of five minutes ago that led some poor sap to my blog:
who is burbage in deathly hallows?
What an earth-shatteringly important question. Until five minutes ago I didn't know that the last HP has a character called Burbage. Now I do, my horizons have been vastly expanded and I can't wait until half past six am the day after.
Oh wait. I have to watch Fireman's Ball and Shop on Main Street Saturday afternoon. Sunday there's a reading and the Loves of a Blonde and Kolya. And on Tuesday I leave for Bangalore for a reading (details of which later).
Where's the time to read HP7?
Having said all this, this time I'm really astonished at the frenzy of wanting to know how it all ends. Why is it important to know who dies? Like, if I told you Hermione dies, or Snape dies, or Hagrid dies, will you not buy the book because everything has been ruined?
I like Rowling's writing less and less but I really do pay her the compliment of thinking it's worth more than the ruin of enjoyment brought about by the fact of a few deaths named prematurely.
Think of Greek tragedy. Think how you know everything that will happen to each character before the story's begun. And yet you listen anyway, not because you want to know what happened next but because you want to know how it happened, who else was there, what they were thinking. You want to laugh at the small things, shiver with the big ones, experience a particularly good sentence, crow over a new turn of phrase. You want to be transported, in effect.
And despite everything, I don't think DH will fail to do that. Who cares who dies?
Update: Via Samanth I find that Michiko Kakutani has already read and reviewed the latest Harry Potter book! Spoilers abound! Go read!