Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Kid and Harry Potter

As I've mentioned here before we have been reading through the Harry Potter books at bedtime for quite awhile, and reading through them at a pace I never imagined when we started. As the books have gotten darker The Kid has held his own amazingly well. (He just turned seven, a precocious seven, but seven all the same.) He didn't even cry when Dumbledore died, although I wept every time I read it and could cry about it even now if I didn't get up and get a cup of tea.


We have just started HP and The Deathly Hallows and for the last three nights, The Kid has been unable to go to sleep. (This has never been a problem before.) He's tossing and turning for an hour or more after light's out and I can't help but think that the suspense and the air of impending doom of the book may be keeping him awake. He may be worrying about who will die and what will happen to Harry. (Heaven knows I am.) He is truly and heartily invested in finishing the book and discovering what happens to these characters he's come to love.

While I am a chapter ahead of our bedtime reading, I haven't read the whole book. I wanted to experience it all together, as a family. I'm staying a chapter ahead in the hopes of being able to reassure The Kid if he has bedtime concerns – Hagrid is okay. Ron and Tonks will get back safely.

Should we keep reading at the risk of his good night's sleep? My mother says no. Lefty think we should soldier on. I'm not sure. What do you think? Is seven too young for the intensity of this book? Should I break his heart and make him wait until he's older to finish the story?


  1. I would suggest having a talk with him. Ask him if that's what is keeping him up at night. Ask how feels about it--does he want to stop, but is afraid to admit it? And if he really, really wants to keep going, then I'd vote for continuing.

  2. I would give him the opportunity to bow out with dignity. If he wants to continue, I would try a few more nights and if the inability to sleep continues, I would tell him "this is too scary for me; we're going to have to come back to it later on."

    Good luck!