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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 15)

I don't know why everyone seems to think that the locket is on stone. It sure looks like it is hanging from a tree and the immediate background we see is the bark on the tree (and not stone).

Posted by Chris from Walla Walla on April 2, 2007 08:13 AM

On the british cover, dont Harry, Ron and Hermione look like they are trying to get/reach something? Maybe its what Harry and Voldemort are reaching out for in the American cover...

Posted by Huzaifah from London on April 2, 2007 08:31 AM

On US cover, Voldemort and Harry don't face each other. They don't even have a wand in their hands. It pretty much s the idea of another magical duel. Isn't it logical though, since they have sister wands? It would tell us that the duel isn't a physical or a magical one, but a duel of another kind, in which Harry's power (the love he got) would result, not in destruction, but in protection and good (I still think about the couple of invisible dementors being there, one to swallow Voldemort's soul through his mouth, one to swallow Voldemort's soul inside Harry's scar).

Now, we obviously have two different scenes featured on US and UK cover. I wonder which scene is the first and which is the last one. Until yesterday, it seemed obvious to me that the Voldemort's scene would be very near the end of the book, almost the last one. I'm not so sure now. I would even be disappointed if Voldemort was vainquished (probably with an external help like the dementors), and then everybody would run and congratulate Harry. It would be too much like the end of a Quidditch game, Harry going back to the ground with the golden snitch in his hand. "And it's all folks. Nothing more in the scar."

Maybe, when Harry has defeated Voldemort, he still has a task to do, his most dangerous task and nothing to protect him: what we see on the UK cover. Just a thought: Voldemort opened the Chamber of Secrets; he wanted Hogwarts to be ruled under Slytherin rules, and if I remember well, he's the last Slytherin's heir; what if he cast a spell that would start ruining Hogwarts as soon as he was defeated or something like that? The only thing that would save Hogwarts is Salazar Slytherin's being buried back at Hogwarts (refering to the Sorting Hat's songs). Harry would have to find the burial place of Slytherin and overcome the huge protections placed on it, including a frightening magical beast, then bring back Salazar's tomb in Hogwarts, inside "The ly Hallows". Someone noticed that in arithmancy, Salazar + Godric + Helga + Rowenta = 999 and "The ly hallows" = 999. Surely not pure coincidence. Then, what we see on the UK cover is the entrance of Slytherin's mausoleum, leading to Slytherin's tomb.

Posted by herve from strasbourg on April 2, 2007 08:52 AM

Dumbledore said he thought the sword wasn't a horcrux because Voldemort couldn't get close enough to it. But what if Voldemort instead used Gryffindor's armor as a horcrux and the sword was used to help locate the rest of the armor? The whole suit of armor could have been together, but Harry split it as he tore the sole from the horcrux. That would explain why they are in the vault with all the pieces of armor scattered around...and destroying the horcrux might cause them to be sucked from the vault.

Posted by Amber from Georia on April 2, 2007 09:02 AM

i think the cover of the american edition is no other than the ly hallows itself. so, i guess it is a place where voldemort and harry have their final battle. i also guess it is the other side of the veil, the onlookers are people or perhaps spirits. just my guess.

Posted by nalie from Bellflower, CA on April 2, 2007 10:48 AM

emd - my mistake, you are right of course. The 'robes' though all have descriptive detail such as, frilly and floaty. Maybe it is just me, but Hermione's robe on the cover looks pretty much the same sort as Rons albeit a different colour.

I am not sure just what the locket is sitting on on the UK adults edition, but some people have mentioned it looks like dark wood. May not be important but the flooring in the atrium of the Ministry is dark wood and the walls have shiny dark wood panelling.

Posted by Orlando from England on April 2, 2007 11:23 AM

I noticed something last night on the UK (childrens) cover. Look at Ron and Hermione's hair. In what direction is it being moved? Both of their hair are being blown forward. This would seem to indicate that at least Ron and Hermione are both being pushed backwards by means unknown. This however, does not account for the lack of movement of Harry and his hair. Any thoughts?

Posted by Robbie from New Mexico on April 2, 2007 11:53 AM

Possibly the reason for Harry not being pushed/pulled back is that he, and he alone can go through whatever it is. Possibly the entrance to the scene of the last battle between him and Voldemort. The prophecy says that it be a battle between just them two, and maybe no other "living" soul can be present.

Posted by Shane from Michigan on April 2, 2007 3:21 PM

Kyle from Kearney, NE - The faces are IN Voldemort's sleeve of his right (extended) hand and they are slightly tinged blue. The face closest to his arm actually looks a bit like Tom Riddle (sort of how he appeared to Dumbledore when he came seeking the DADA job) his eyes look like a snakes but his face is still human looking. The face that is farther down (his sleeve) is a brighter blue but is less distinguishable, It sort of looks like an older bearded wizard.
Am I making this up? Can ANYONE else see this?

Posted by tracy on April 2, 2007 6:44 PM

It does look as though Harry, Ron, and Hermione's hair are being blown back. This force is presumably why Harry is holding out his hands. Could the gold and jewels be flying toward our heroes? If J.K Rowling said she wasn't introducing new creatures, then who is that creature on the helm?

Posted by Andrew from Florida on April 2, 2007 7:28 PM

To me, the arches in the background of the US cover look like the train track bridge from the movies.

And the small shadows at the bottom don't look like people at all. They look more like either head stones in a cemetary or houses/buildings in a village (or maybe even both--a village with a cemetary in it).

We know that Godric's Hollow was a place, right? So what if it was a village, and that village was in a valley over which the Hogwarts Express travelled every year?

Couldn't the splintered wood and tattered fabric be all that's left of Lily & James's house? And the village (as I see it) in the background be the rest of Godric's Hollow?

Posted by Darcy from Frederick, Maryland on April 2, 2007 8:32 PM

On the British Children's edition:
-The cloud above Hogwarts looks like a snake, heading towards the moon.
-The door of Hogwarts is open and you can see light all over the place, I think this means Harry go back to school.
-You can see the Whomping Willow.
-It is, in fact, a reflection of a phoenix (Fawkes?) on that armor (Dumbledore's? Or even one belonging to Hogwarts?)
-The armor has a Dragon on it's helmet, and you can see several parts of the armor in the middle of the treasure. This could be a reference to Sigfried, from the legend of the Nibelungenlied.
-All of them have cuts and bruises, Ron has one on his cheek.
-The House-Elf, it is likely to be Kreacher, seeing it is not wearing any (visible) clothes. Therefore, it is not free.
-Neither Hermione nor Ron are wearing their regular school-robes. Harry is wearing plain black ones.
-The Archway. Department of Mysteries? I think it is what is behind the veil.
-The Snake is caught within an apparent glass orb, yet again, this leads me to think of the Department of Mysteries OR Voldemort is caught in something/someone (Harry?).
-Harry, Ron and Hermione seem to be falling forward, this also leads me to believe they are behind the veil.
-Harry's glasses seem to be reflecting something, I think fire, judging by the brightness of it all.

On the British Adult's edition:
-The locket is the original, it is very much worked, stylized and embedded with emeralds.
-The Locket is, if you notice, placed on a stone surface. Dark stone, not carved (or roughly carved) judging by the clearly natural look it has.

On the American Edition:
-Harry is wearing a locket, similar to the one described in HBP. I'd think it's the fake one, because it would be a reminder of what must happen, of what must be done.
-Harry reaches, while Voldemort looks as if he pushes away, but it could also be interpreted as Harry waits for something, but Voldemort tries to seize it.
-It looks like this is taking place at sunshine, judging by the color of the sky.
-People are watching. Or are at least present at this place. The place where they're at seems to be some kind of outdoors theater.
-Besides of the remains of wood, there are a couple of what seem to be tree trunks or maybe the remains of circular pillars AND the curtain-like things are ragged at the base of them.
-Harry's scar is (possibly) covered by his hair.
-Harry looks immensely calm, while desperation fills Voldemorts eyes.

After all of this, my conclusions:

The trio's searching after something, they (Ron and Herms) said they were not leaving Harry on his own. The armor, maybe it's the one that's goblin-made, if so, that's Voldemort's vault, I think.

Another thing, I just read about it being Godric's Hollow, I say it might fit in, the place where it all started may also be the place where it all must end.

Finally, and this may not be important, but don't you think Ginny is going to have a major role now? I mean, she might be the extra protection Harry needs, I read a fan-fiction where she sacrificed herself for Harry and that actually saved him, and it isn't so far-fetched, seing that she may become a major character.

Posted by Ra�l Llavaneras from San Antonio de Los Altos, Venezuela on April 2, 2007 9:05 PM

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