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Judging a book by its cover

by David Haber

We finally have images of the covers of the American and British versions of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and if these covers are anything like previous Harry Potter book covers have been, these new covers potentially tell us a lot of what is going to happen in Book 7.

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Reader Comments: (Page 14)

Does anyone wonder why, on the British cover, the locket is on stone and not something like a piece of velvet?

Posted by Nancy from New Hampshire on April 1, 2007 4:34 PM

I just wondered if anyone else has noticed that the sword pitured on the American version of CoS and the UK version of DH's are different swords. They are two different types plus the one on CoS does not have rubies...I wonder if they're trying to fix an old error or if they are supposed to be two different swords. Personally I think they are two seperate swords considering that the UK version has what looks like could be a full set of armor to match the sword.
I think it might also be worth pointing out that the house elf or goblin (whatever it is) isn't holding the sword aggresivly. If it were, it would have its thumb clasped around the sword in a much firmer grip. Also it looks like everyone in the picture is falling, if anything it looks as if the creature is trying to keep the sword from hurting someone accidentally. I seriously doubt that it is Kreacher holding the sword.

Posted by John from Tuscaloosa, Alabama on April 1, 2007 6:57 PM

Did anyone notice that the armour on the British cover is a helmet and breastplate? And on the second page I think whoever said the house elf thing might be a goblin has a point.

Posted by Tessa from Cody, Wyoming on April 1, 2007 7:35 PM

orlando, the girls wore gowns in the movies, but in the books they were wearing robes.

I don't know if this was one of the things JKR put in the books as a clue, but in OotP she specifically mentions the brass knocker on the oak door leading to Dumbledore's Office being shaped like a griffin. The first time is when Harry first goes to Dumbledore's office in the book after having the dream that Ron's dad was attacked by the snake. She then mentions it quickly again after the patronus DA meeting when she catches harry and takes him straight to Dumbledore's office.

Now the knocker could have been there for just Dumbledore, or for all of the headmasters, but it makes me think, maybe they are in a gringotts vault, and its dumbledores.

Or, remember in the beginning of HBP when Dumbledore shows Harry the memory of when he first told Tom Riddle he was a wizard, and Tom said he didnt have any money to buy things, Dumbledore told him Hogwarts Had a fund for this.

so, tying this all together, if that is a griffin on the helmet in the UK version (it could very well be a dragon which in that case this would all be irrelevant) then maybe that vault is the Hogwarts vault, carrying very valuable valuables indeed.

and if that is Voldemort on Harry's back in the UK childrens version, what does harry want so badly that he doesnt notice voldemort on his back armed with a sword? plus that would have to be a very small voldemort, i think we should stick with it either being an elf or a goblin, but i personally think its a Goblin, the elves are usually feeble, but this creature is holding the sword with enough force to hold it or to attack someone, and if they are in gringotts, a goblin seems more sensible.

Posted by emd from Columbus,ohio on April 1, 2007 9:13 PM

i am just thinking that fancy dress robes of ron and hermione shows that they might get married in ly hallows.

Posted by hassan from pakistan on April 2, 2007 12:31 AM

in chamber of secrets, dumbledore tells harry that only a true gryffindor can pull the sword out of hat. so if harry is true gryffindor i.e he is godric gryffindor's decsendent like voldemort is of slytherin's than we might see godric gryffindor's soul coming back and helping harry to get rid of voldemort. maybe thats why harry's hand is pointing upward in us edition of ly hallows (i mean he is calling for some help and gryffindor's soul is coming to help him).

Posted by hassan from pakistan on April 2, 2007 12:50 AM

The first thing i thought of was the veil or the pensieve for the uk cover arch. I noticed someone said the US covers depict someone/thing that s in each book, but the Oz (same as UK) covers all show important, but seemingly random moments eg. platform 9 3/4's, harry and ron driving/flying over the hogwarts express, the rescue of buckbeack, the first task, fawkes, and harry/dumbledore repeling the infiri.

HP 6 does show the ring at the top of the spine and the unbreakable vow on the inside, both for the hard back copies. I only have paper backs of 1-4, so I can't comment. I think on HP7 cover the patronus symbolises harry, and maybe james, and the rememberal symbolises neville, perhaps even voldemort. Who's to say it is even a rememberall though, in also reminds me of the prophesy... On the spine the symbol reminded me of a door, does it actually mean something?

For anyone with UK hard covers, maybe you could post what the pics on the spine and inside covers are? It'll be good to see what HP7's inside cover pics are, if it has any.

Posted by mmc on April 2, 2007 12:50 AM

It looks to me that Ron seems to be stumbling backwards, falling. When I noticed this, I figured out what I thought Hermione might be doing. It looks to me like she's rushing forward to grab something, possibly to grab Ron if he falls? Then I asked myself 'Why isn't that shown then? Ron and Hermione aren't even facing each other.' Well that'd be a bit too giving, wouldn't it?

There's another possible thoery of mine involving Ron's expression... What if he somehow trips when Harry decides he wants to see the veil from the 5th book one last time, and falls in? That'd be reason enough for Hermione's and Ron's expression. This possibly might tie in with the theory about the veil and the cover of the american book cover being tied together.. What if there's another word beyond the veil? That would explain the dream word type of art on the american cover. But that doesn't explain why Sirius d when he fell through and how this would all come about without anyone ?

Posted by Belgaer from Indiana on April 2, 2007 01:28 AM

Few points, someone mentioned about the two potion bottles being the same as Hermione and Ron's robes. Perhaps they have been indulging in the old pollyjuice potion (which we know alters colour when bits of the target are added to it)!
This whole goblin/elf thing: I am leaning more towards house elf, as I would have thought a goblin a bit more robust (despite how the films portray them) and, I noticed very angry furrowed brows on 'it' just behind harrys shoulder, he seems to have a very 'gollumish' stab-in-the-back way about him. Didn't Griffindor's sword have writing along the fuller?
Finally I am almost sure they are being sucked through the arch, otherwise Hermione's hands would be flatter as if to brace for impact. Oh, and I think the mist on the back cover is the breeding of dementors...

Posted by Leslie from Shetland on April 2, 2007 05:46 AM

i think that the room in the UK kids edition may be the room of requierment. in HBP when Harry hides the book he stood in awe of the treasure around him. and malfoy had been in that room all year. i think Voldemort may have left another horcrux in hogwarts!

Posted by Jeremy from Dublin, Ireland on April 2, 2007 07:26 AM

and just thought i'd mention... anybody notice in the US edition that Harry and Voldemort are wearing the same robes. does anybody think this means anything?

Posted by Jeremy from Dublin, Ireland on April 2, 2007 07:40 AM

Seeing the stag patronus on the UK kids cover got me thinking. After the end of HBP I figured Harry would have to do some quick learning to stand a chance confronting Voldemort. However, maybe he�s already got the tools to face Voldemort. As explained in PoA the patronus requires the user to think of a happy memory. Harry was able to conjure a very powerful patronus without much in the way of happy memories to draw on. Now in HBP, Harry finds love for the first time giving him a very strong happy memory to draw on. I think Ginny play a huge role in the final book and Harry�s love (his power Voldemort knows not) may now produce a patronus of such power (we�re talking WMD patronus) that Voldemort, if not vanquished, could certainly be knocked off balance where Harry or another (Snape, Wormtail, Neville, Ron?) might be able to finish him off. Maybe the sight of Harry�s stag patronus reminds Wormtail of James to the point that out of guilt and his life to Harry he turns on Voldemort.

Posted by Bart from Denver, Colorado on April 2, 2007 08:08 AM

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