Introduction Potterheads, are you ready?! This review is especially for you 😉
As somebody knows, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – Illustrated Edition” was published in Britain this autumn. When it arrived at my house, I was moved. It’s beautiful.
Review The lucky illustrator, Jim Kay, was personally chosen by J.K. Rowling. Some years ago he won the Kate Greenway Medal, one of the most important international awards regarding children’s illustrations. He’s a big passionate of library and botany. We can see this in his accurate and elegant landscapes. He has always been fascinated by Harry Potter’s world and he started this new work with considerable imagination and passion.
His drawings are, obviously, the main feature of the book. Whether a small corner of the page or that occupy a whole, they have all been meticulously prepared, with maniacal attention to details.
He used the watercolor. His features are very accurate, the light and shade is used in a perfect way, especially to create the atmosphere. When he needed to represent a character or a precise detail, nothing has been overlooked. Moreover, he hasn’t been influenced by the movie version. He made things as he imagined, reading the book. The Sorting Hat and the Golden Snitch… are small pearls of imagination and cleverness.
An entire facade is dedicated to the main characters. Harry, Ron, Hermione, Minerva McGranitt, Albus Silente, Draco Malfoy, Hagrid, Raptor/Voldemort, they were all painted to make not only the physical, but also the character.
Kay’s favorite character to illustrate was Hagrid, as he explains in his website: “I love illustrating Giants. They remind me of adults like being a small child again, in time When everything was hard to reach, and adults were just a forest of legs.”.
Every time I look at his coat I discover a small detail that I didn’t noticed before and that makes the character even more marked.
In the illustration of the castle Kay was inspired by several buildings in Britain, such as the Church of All Saints in Thornham, the Aberdeen University and the Tower of London.
Another type of brush stroke has been used to represent the Forbidden Forest. Here the play of light and shadow is predominant and makes the atmosphere more intense.
Another thing I really appreciated was the introduction of two extracts of “Fantastic Beasts”. The first is an explanation of the Trolls’ anatomy in the form of notes, with notes and drawings; the second is an illustration of the different kinds of dragon eggs. An unexpected and nice idea.
What else can I say? This book is simply gorgeous, a collector’s item.
Now we have to wait the release of “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” illustrated version, the prequel “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” and, for the lucky ones who manage to be in London this summer, the play “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”!
You can find more information about Jim Kay and his work in his website: http://www.jimkay.co.uk/home/harry-potter/
TITLE: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: Illustrated Edition
AUTHOR: J.K. Rowling
ILLUSTRATOR: Jim Kay
PUBLISHING HOUSE: Bloomsbury
PRICE: £ 15,00 on Amazon