Author Archives: Alyssa

Book Review: Stray #1 by Elissa Sussman

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Like all women, Princess Aislynn (pronounced ‘ASH-lynn’) possesses dangerous magic that must be controlled and subdued with the help of male Advisers in accordance with The Path to keep them from becoming ‘strays’—like the wicked and reclusive Queen Josetta. When Aislynn fails to control her magic, she’s punished: stripped of her title and ‘loving heart’ (aka all intense or ‘sinful’ emotions), and sent to become a Fairy Godmother (a combination of nuns and governesses who ... Read More »

Theater Review: ‘Peddling’, Starring & Written by Harry Melling

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The themes of rewind and repetition are threaded through Peddling, the writing début of Harry Melling, best known for his run as the unpleasant Dudley Dursley in the Harry Potter films. But you’ll find no hint of Dudley here; Melling has shed Dudley’s cartoonishly menacing bulk—literally and figuratively—and instead inhabits a complex, energetic homeless boy who makes his living by selling ‘everyday essentials’ door to door. Read More »

“Child-Proofing Harry Potter”: A Rebuttal

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My friend Brandon knows me very well. This past Sunday, he posted a New York Times editorial to my Facebook wall. It was entitled “Child-Proofing Harry Potter” and was written by Lynn Messina, a mom and novelist. The title raised red flags for me immediately. Then I read the editorial itself and found that not only were the red flags completely justified, they were accompanied by some sirens and flashing red lights as well. See, ... Read More »

The Melting Cauldron: How America Teaches Magic

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Goblet of Fire gave us a tiny glimpse into the magical world outside of Hogwarts and British wizarding communities. We got informed impressions of Europe’s other wizarding schools—Beauxbatons and Durmstrang—as well as glimpses of other pockets of wizarding society at the Quidditch World Cup, notably the Salem Witches’ Institute. America is arguably the largest group of consumers of the Harry Potter series, and what young (or old, for that matter) American reader hasn’t wished for ... Read More »

Defining the Harry Potter Generation

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How do we define who fits into the "Harry Potter Generation"? Read More »