Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince arrives on Pottermore

"Avada Kedavra" Moment from book six -- Copyright of Pottermore

“Avada Kedavra” Moment from book six — Copyright of Pottermore

The sixth Harry Potter book is now available on Pottermore.com after the site ran a Christmas campaign releasing one Moment from the new book a day over 12 days.

Trace the plot from the Unbreakable Vow made between Severus Snape and Narcissa Malfoy all the way through Dumbledore’s death and funeral in stunning new illustrations. In the Moments, discover never-before-released information from J.K. Rowling on Florean Fortescue’s Ghost Plot, Inferi, Draco Malfoy’s backstory, and much more.

Explore the new Half-Blood Prince Moments, with new content from J.K. Rowling, now >>

In addition to the book, two new Potions are available to brew, Doxycide and the Shrinking Solution. The new Moments are filled with Potion ingredients, so keep an eye on your discovery bar until it’s filled. If you haven’t checked your Gringotts balance lately, Pottermore added a few hundred Galleons to everyone’s account to buy ingredients in the Apothecary. So, get brewing this holiday break!

What do you think of the new Moments? What is your favorite new J.K. Rowling entry? Tell us in the comments below!

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Pottermore’s 12 Days of Christmas Surprises

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This post will be updated every day of Pottermore’s Christmas celebration.

Last week, Pottermore announced their Christmas celebration, spanning from this Friday, December 12 until December 23. Over the course of the celebration, Pottermore plans to release a surprise to fans everyday, with gifts including new Moments from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, new writing from J.K. Rowling, additions to Potions, and more. The gifts are released on pottermore.com everyday at 1pm GMT (8am EST); all fans have to do is solve a simple riddle to unlock the gift. Otherwise, you can follow Pottermore’s releases on this post..

December 23:

Riddle Answer: Albus.

Surprise: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince concludes with Dumbledore’s funeral. Listen to the audiobook version as the headmaster is laid to rest and unlock new information by J.K. Rowling on the Order of Merlin honors.

From the entry:

The Order of Merlin, commemorating the most famous wizard of his time, has been given since the fifteenth century. Legend says that the green ribbon, on which the First Class Order hangs, is to reflect Merlin’s Hogwarts house.

December 22:

Riddle Answer: Draco Malfoy.

Surprise: In the penultimate Moment of Half-Blood Prince, Snape performs the Killing Curse on Dumbledore when Draco cannot complete the task. Click on Draco to unlock a substantial new entry from J.K. Rowling, in which she summarizes his life during his school years, including information on Lucius and Voldemort’s influence on his life. Her own thoughts on the character are in-depth as well, with comments on Draco’s personality and name, Tom Felton’s portrayal, and more.

From J.K. Rowling’s Thoughts:

I pity Draco, just as I feel sorry for Dudley. Being raised by either the Malfoys or the Dursleys would be a very damaging experience, and Draco undergoes dreadful trials as a direct result of his family’s misguided principles. However, the Malfoys do have a saving grace: they love each other. 

December 21:

Riddle Answer: Inferi

Surprise:  Dumbledore and Harry encounter Inferi inside the cave where Salazar Slytherin’s Locket is kept. Zoom in to see Dumbledore taking the Inferi head-on and to unlock a new entry from J.K. Rowling on Inferi. In addition to explaining the creatures, Rowling discusses the relation between Inferi and zombies and relays her reasoning to not “call the guardians of the locket Horcrux zombies.”

From the entry: “Lastly, zombies have been represented and reinterpreted on film so often in the last fifty years that they have a whole raft of associations that were of no use to me.  I’m part of the ‘Thriller’ generation; to me, a zombie will always mean Michael Jackson in a bright red bomber jacket.

December 20:

Riddle Answer: Room of Requirement.

Surprise: In the ninth Moment, Harry leaves the Half-Blood Prince’s Advanced Potion Making textbook in the Room of Hidden Things. No content to unlock, but a lot of things to play around with inside the room.

December 19:

Riddle Answer: Salazar Slytherin.

Surprise: Harry and Dumbledore watch on as Tom Riddle meets with Hepzibah Smith in the eighth Moment from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. There is no new content to unlock.

December 18:

Riddle Answer: Apparition.

Surprise: Harry and his classmates learn the basic skills of Apparation from Wilkie Twycross, the Ministry Apparition Instructor, in the Great Hall. There is no new content to unlock, but a few collectible items to find, including Galleons.

December 17:

Riddle Answer: Luna Lovegood.

Surprise: In the sixth Moment from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry and friends attend Professor Slughorn’s holiday party. J.K. Rowling shares information about Vampires in Harry Potter, revealing early plans for a vampire Hogwarts professor named Trocar, and dispelling rumors that Professor Snape was a vampire. “In short,” the author concludes, “Snape is not a re-vamped Trocar.”

December 16:

Riddle Answer: Professor Dumbledore.

Surprise: Dumbledore and Harry use the Penseive to visit Dumbeldore’s memories with a young Tom Riddle. Again, there is no entry from J.K. Rowling to read, but there Pottermore did release another two-part Potion, the Shrinking Solution. Brewing both the Shrinking Solution and Doxycide will earn users the Practical Potion-Maker badge.

December 15:

Riddle Answer: Chaser.

Surprise: Katie Bell is cursed in the snowy fourth Moment of Half-Blood Prince, from chapter twelve. There is no J.K. Rowling content to read, but many collectible item for one’s trunk. Pottermore also added the Book of Potions to Flourish and Blotts in Diagon Alley, which members can purchase using Galleons. By purchasing the book, users can brew a new, two-part Potion, Doxycide.

December 14:

Riddle Answer: Professor Slughorn.

Surprise: The third Moment of Half-Blood Prince, in which Harry’s Potions class is brewing Felix Felicis (chapter 9). Along with many collectible potion ingredients, there are two entries from J.K. Rowling to be discovered in the Potions classroom, subjected on Cauldrons and Potions.

From J.K. Rowling’s Thoughts on “Potions”: Chemistry was my least favourite subject at school, and I gave it up as soon as I could.  Naturally, when I was trying to decide which subject Harry’s arch-enemy, Severus Snape, should teach, it had to be the wizarding equivalent.  

Screenshot 2014-12-13 at 06.19.13 PMDecember 13:

Riddle Answer: Diagon Alley.

Surprise: The second Moment of Half-Blood Prince, from chapter six, depicting Fred and George’s joke shop in Diagon Alley. J.K. Rowling gives insight into the history of the Leaky Cauldron pub, as well as the ghost-plot of Florean Fortescue, the ice-cream parlor owner.

December 12:

Riddle Answer: Professor Snape.

Surprise: First moment of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, depicting the second chapter of the book. In the Moment, discover new information from J.K. Rowling about the town of Cokeworth, where Severus Snape and Lily and Petunia Evans grew up. Pottermore also rewarded all users with 300 Galleons to their Gringotts account.

Pottermore announces Christmas campaign for Half-Blood Prince

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This year, Christmas comes early to Pottermore with brand new writing from J.K. Rowling, new Moments from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and more.

Today, Pottermore announced their Christmas campaign to coincide with the website’s release of daily surprises starting next Friday, December 12. From that date until December 23, Pottermore will be releasing a treat everyday at 1pm GMT (8am EST), with treats ranging from new potions to original content from J.K. Rowling on Draco Malfoy and the ghost plot of Florean Fortescue, to be found in new Moments from Half-Blood Prince.

To keep up with the #PottermoreChristmas celebration, be sure to subscribe to Pottermore’s Facebook event and keep up with their Twitter and the Insider. The fun begins next Friday on pottermore.com…

J.K. Rowling publishes “live” reports of Quidditch World Cup on Pottermore

qwc2014picIn continuation with their efforts to build excitement around the 2014 Quidditch World Cup, today Pottermore published two new “live” reports of the Cup, written by J.K. Rowling.

The two entries are being billed as articles from the the wizarding world’s leading newspaper, the Daily Prophet, and written by Ginny Potter (formerly Weasley), the Prophet‘s Quidditch Correspondent in Patagonian desert, where the Cup is taking place.

In the first of today’s entries, titled “Disastrous Opening Ceremony Leads to Questions about Quidditch World Cup Security,” and dated 12 April 2014, Ginny documents the controversies surrounding the opening ceremony of the event. She describes how the teams’ mascots caused havoc on the event and includes statements from the Argentinian Council of Magic regarding the event.

The article also quotes magizoologist expert Rolf Scamander, who spoke about the disruptive mascots. As fans will know, Rolf Scamander’s expertise in magical creatures runs in the family, and Rolf’s grandfather, Newt Scamander will be the subject of the upcoming Fantastic Beasts film series, the screenplay for which is also being written by J.K. Rowling.

The second entry, “Norway versus Ivory Coast,” is a full recap of the Cup’s first game between those two countries. The post also includes a full post-game analysis.

The two reports are part of continuing effort by Pottermore to build excitement around this year’s Quidditch World Cup. The site previously published J.K. Rowling’s in-depth history of the tournament last month.

In conjunction with the posting of these reports, Pottermore has opened the Daily Prophet‘s offices in Diagon Alley to users, which is where you can read the two articles.

Visit the Daily Prophet Offices on Pottermore.com to read the live reports from the Quidditich World Cup.

Do you like what Pottermore is doing with the Quidditch World Cup? Do you like J.K. Rowling’s involvement with the site? Tell us your thoughts about the reports below!

Pottermore adds new information on Gilderoy Lockhart to ‘Chamber of Secrets’

Chamber of SecretsToday Pottermore added a new J.K. Rowling exclusive content entry, a biography of Gilderoy Lockhart, to Chamber of Secrets.

The new entry can be found in chapter 13, in which Lockhart goes all-out for Valentine’s Day.

Here are some excerpts from the entry:

Many staff were baffled as to the reason that Albus Dumbledore chose to invite Gilderoy Lockhart back to Hogwarts as Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher. While it was true that it had become almost impossible to persuade anybody else to take the job (the rumour that it was cursed was gathering strength both inside and outside Hogwarts), many teachers remembered Lockhart as thoroughly obnoxious, whatever his later achievements.

Albus Dumbledore’s plans, however, ran deep. He happened to have known two of the wizards for whose life’s work Gilderoy Lockhart had taken credit, and was one of the only people in the world who thought he knew what Lockhart was up to. Dumbledore was convinced that Lockhart needed only to be put back into an ordinary school setting to be revealed as a charlatan and a fraud. Professor McGonagall, who had never liked Lockhart, asked Dumbledore what he thought students would learn from such a vain, celebrity-hungry man. Dumbledore replied that ‘there is plenty to be learned even from a bad teacher: what not to do, how not to be’.

Jo has written a lot more, so be sure to read the rest on Pottermore.com.

First Installment of Goblet of Fire now available for all to explore

The Riddle House, as depicted on Pottermore

The Riddle House, as depicted on Pottermore

As of today, the first installment of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is now available for all Pottermore users to explore.

Return to Pottermore.com to explore the first ten moments of the fourth Harry Potter book. Encounter the eerie Riddle House in Little Hangleton, and even travel by Portkey to the unforgettable Quidditch World Cup.

In addition, in three new exclusive content entries, author J.K. Rowling shares the origins of the Floo Network, new information on Portkeys, and an interesting explanation to the symbolism of colors in the Wizarding World.

Here’s an excerpt from Rowling’s entry on ‘Colors’:

The four Hogwarts houses have a loose association with the four elements, and their colours were chosen accordingly.  Gryffindor (red and gold) is connected to fire; Slytherin (green and silver) to water; Hufflepuff (yellow and black, representing wheat and soil) to earth; and Ravenclaw (blue and bronze; sky and eagle feathers) to air.

Colours like peach and salmon pink are distinctly un-magical, and therefore much favoured by the likes of Aunt Petunia.  On the other hand, shocking pink, as sported by the likes of Nymphadora Tonks, conveys a certain punky ‘yes, I’ve got a Muggle-born father and I’m not ashamed of it’ attitude.

Did anyone else enjoy that last sentence?

Also, for the first time, you will be able to hear J.K. Rowling reveal a notorious mishap with the Floo Network, in a new audio entry feature on Pottermore.com. You can listen to the audio entry and read all the rest, only on Pottermore.com.

Happy Exploring!

Read the Goblet of Fire e-book, only available at the Pottermore Shop, while exploring the new Moments.