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A Year of Books
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Harry Potter 'is an icon for the noughties'

22nd December 2009

J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter should be considered one of the icons of the past decade, according to Guardian columnist Mark Lawson.

The critic pointed out that the character was the first 'global superhero of the 21st century' and has achieved a status on a par with James Bond, Peter Pan and Sherlock Holmes.

'As is often the case with cultural phenomena, it seems to have helped that Potter defied the conventional wisdom of the time,' Lawson argued.

He explained that Potter emerged at a time when most publishers believed there was no market for a boy wizard character who is considered to be a 'wimp', yet he rapidly became one of the most-loved modern children's heroes.

Lawson claimed that Rowling's success is because her books take influence from classics like Lord of the Rings and The Famous Five, while including contemporary elements, such as Hermione Granger's feminist outlook.

The commentator also suggested that readers take Potter to heart because they can see him grow up over the course of the seven books - unlike the permanently middle-aged Holmes and Bond.

Last month, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, founder of Bonaventura Pictures, revealed that Michael Scott's The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel novels will be adapted for the big screen in a bid to replicate the success of the Harry Potter films.

© W&G Foyle Ltd
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