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Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

In case you've been out of it, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince was released Saturday 16th July. And within 24 hours sold 6.9 million in the US, 2 million in the UK. I'd share more sales info worldwide but can't seem to find additional information as yet. It was released internationally though and sold in dozens of countries around the world this weekend, including Mexico, Romania, Israel, Thailand, Pakistan, China, India and Australia.

Figures and such sound impressive but why does it rate top headlines on the news you ask? Well, in the literary world this kind of sales is completely unheard of. For a comparison, since its release, The DaVinci Code had sold 3,005,851 paperback copies. And if you've never heard of the DaVinci Code, then you really don't care anyway :)

According to this article "Typically, a good book will take about four to six months to go gold (selling 500,000) and very few books reach platinum (1 million sold) in the first year of publication." Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince achieved platinum in less than one day.

I see this as good news for 3 reasons.
  1. It promotes reading which is always a good thing especially in children and teens. There are many worse things someone can do than read a 600 page book.
  2. It promotes the concept of fantasy and magic which I happen to think of as a good thing because indirectly fantasy and magic promotes the high ideals of tolerance. This is a little preachy but think about it. If you accept a world that has dragons and elves and dwarfs living together, that's tolerance.
  3. But most importantly, I find comfort in knowing that this story is being embraced by almost all developing and developed nations who have different cultures and who speak different languages. It means that for all our differences, we do share common ground. It fills me with hope that if we can all enjoy this book, perhaps we can all enjoy world peace in the distant future.
Bah enough of the soapbox talk, here's the 4 covers for Book 6.

UK Cover

Deluxe Cover

Adult Cover

US Cover
I finished the book in 24 hours. Started at 3pm on Saturday and finished it about 2+pm on Sunday. Man was that fun. I love this book, like Book 1-4 its very readable . Book 5 was a little hard to reread cos Harry was so mad all the time. Oh and another great thing about having such a large number available on day 1, I didn't have to get in line for the book or even pre-order it. I just had a good night's sleep and then strolled into Costco the next day. They had plenty of copies. :)

Links:
Great Potter Info site
Harry Potter Spells

I like the british cover better...

Funny thing though - the first printing of HP was for 10M copies. Then right before it went on sale, they printed another 2.7M copies.

As of right now, booksellers all agree that HP 6 is selling faster than the last book, but....nonetheless, it's still not quite 12.7 copies. And so - after the first day, all major booksellers are discounting HP 6. Amazon has decrease the price by $1 and is giving the $1 credit back to those who pre-ordered. Walmart droped the price to $15.98 and so did Target. Etc, etc, etc. And so. blah, blah, blah. :)

Costco sold it for $15.99

Plus I got my groceries for the week done. :) No pre-order, no lines, no fuss. Gotta love it.

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