Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II opens today (I will be seeing it tomorrow ;fangirl dance;) and it markes the end of the Harry Potter movie franchise (unless they do that Beetle and the Bard thing that was rumored). But I don't think it marks the end of Harry Potter like some (mostly non-fans) have claimed. Because people are still discovering Potter, you have Pottermore coming out later, and I don't know about you guys but if I ever get kids as soon as they're old enough I'm giving them Harry Potter to enjoy for themselves. Not to mention there's the encyclopedia from Rowling to look forward too and maybe she'll do more school book things (just throwing this out there, Rowling: Hogwarts, A History-pretty, pretty, please?).
Potter has been a fun ride that's for sure. I discovered the books way back before the fourth book came out and just as the deal for three HP movies was announced. I won't lie to you and say Harry Potter made me a reader, I was reading long before HP. But it definitely made me a happy person because I was in middle school by then and growing frusterated with the lack of good fantasy out there. At this point, there really wasn't. You had the old school fantasy books like Lord of the Rings (which then I wasn't really old enough to appreciate) or The Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander which were fine but sometimes felt dated and there was definitely a lack of female characters as well except for Tamora Pierce's books or The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede. Many think calling Harry Potter a phenomenon is an exhaggeration, well I'm not so sure because thanks to Potter the childrens section and YA section suddenly became much larger especially in terms of fantasy. Thanks to Harry, we got stuff like Percy Jackson, The Last Apprentice series, Artemis Fowl, and heck even Eragon (though I don't think that series is particularly good, sorry Eragon fans). I still say that Twilight probably wouldn't have had half it's readers in the first place if Harry Potter hadn't made those teens readers first when they were younger.
Harry Potter to me felt fresh and new, it had a wide variety of characters to relate too, it was well written and didn't pander to it's audience, and things especially got interesting for me after reading Prisoner of Azkaban because it felt like things had suddenly become a lot darker and by then I was hooked and had managed to even get my mother into the books. I have basically been a Potterhead ever since. While I don't think the movies are as good as the books, I do appreciate them still and think they're a nice companion. As book adaptations go, it could have been far worse (Golden Compass movie, anyone?).
I still love the HP fandom especially. We are wide variety of open-minded friendly people. I have made great friends from Harry Potter and love that it is still luring people into becoming readers. I will miss the movie and book events for sure but I think even without them, Harry Potter is here to stay and will probably be counted as a classic years from now. That said, I will be having a review of Deathly Hallows 2 up tomorrow and whenever it opens up online you guys can catch me over at Pottermore for sure!