Ordinary Bookclub: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (Chapters 1-5)
Okay. So we’ve read the first five chapters of Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality.
Chapter 1: Where we find out that this universe’s Harry Potter has an aunt Petunia who, instead of marrying Vernon Dursley talked (berated, threatened) her sister Lily into getting her a Beauty Potion. This beauty potion opened doors and Petunia married, instead, an Oxford Professor who loves science and, yes, rationality. And if you get a letter from Hogwarts when your step-parents are venial and stupid, that’s one thing. But if you get one when your step-dad is an Oxford professor, that’s quite another. I mean, seriously. If YOU got a letter from Hogwarts when you were 11, your parents would have known it was a practical joke and, depending on how excited you were to hear about it, they’d have opinions on how cruel or tasteless a joke it was. Well, so too with Harry’s dad.
Chapter 2: We establish that magic exists to the satisfaction of Harry’s dad. Also, we establish that magic is weird.
Chapter 3: We visit the shoppes of Diagon Alley and we see Harry learn about the fate of his genetic parents. Oh, and we meet Professor Quirrell.
Chapter 4: We visit Gringotts. If there are there are 17 Sickles in a Galleon, and 29 Knuts in a Sickle, then there are 493 Knuts to a Galleon. We learn that Harry has a LOT of Galleons.
Chapter 5: We get a bag of holding and figure out how it works. We see people meet Harry Potter for the first time and they thank him for what he did… and we see Harry get irritated at their committing of the Fundamental Attribution Error Fallacy. Then we go get Harry some robes and, looky there, we have our first meeting with Draco!
And that’s our first five chapters.
Next Sunday, we’ll cover chapters 6-10 which should take us all the way up to the scene with the Sorting Hat (unless people agitate for more chapters to be read for our little weekly sessions in the comments).
So… What do you think?
(Featured image is Foucault’s Pendulum by Sylvar. Used under a creative commons license.)