Re-Read: Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them

Fantastic Beasts

Later this year, I am really looking forward to returning to the magical ‘Harry Potter’ world with the release of the new film Fantastic Beasts; starring the wonderful Eddie Redmayne. In preparation I thought I would re-read Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander, aka J K Rowling.

Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them was originally published in 2001 to raise money for Comic Relief and was written by Rowling under the pseudonym of Newt Scamander; a fictitious adventurer and author from the wizarding world. It isn’t a story but in fact a textbook – that Harry and his friends use in their lessons at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry – which is full of magical creatures like mermaids, pixies, dragons, centaurs and many more; where they live; and how dangerous they are! A particularly amusing touch is that Rowling has included Harry’s and Ron’s annotations to the book, which includes: many cheeky comments about Hagrid’s love of dangerous beasts and their own experiences with some of the creatures named.

I first read this as a young teenager when it came out, with its companion Quidditch Through the Ages, right in the middle of the Harry Potter phenomenon – sadly that was quite a long time ago now! Before this re-read, I had only vague memories of this being an amusing read but, if I’m honest, I was struggling to see how it could be made into a film. On re-reading this super slim book in record quick time I discovered it was a lot funnier than I remembered and it has so many interesting (fantasy) facts. I can also now see that there are a lot of ways the film makers could go with this book – the fictitious author, Newt Scamander, must have had so many thrilling adventures researching all the wonderful creatures he writes about.

Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them was a quick and fun read for me, and I now can’t wait for the film even more! Before it comes out perhaps I can squeeze in a quick re-read of its companion, Quidditch Through the Ages, too. Good read.

Have you read this? Are you looking forward to the release of the new film?

Once Upon a Time X – #9


12 thoughts on “Re-Read: Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them

    1. Lory, no the book doesn’t have a plot – its a textbook with humorous notes made in it by Harry and his friends. I can’t wait for the film as it is any excuse to go back to the magical world of Harry Potter!

  1. I knew about the film but didn’t know this was in the style of a textbook. Difficult to adapt for film but a very interesting idea!

    1. Charlie, definitely an interesting idea – I would imagine and deduce from the trailer I’ve seen that the film will be more inspired by the adventures of the fictitious author, New Scamander, rather than a straight adaptation. I am really looking forward to it 😀

  2. Ooh, good reminder that I need to read this book before the movie comes out. I’m excited for the movie, it looks really good. And it takes place in that Harry Potter world that I love so much. Maybe I’ll reread all of the Harry Potter books. I’m kind of in that mood. 🙂

  3. I loved Harry Potter when the first book came out. I worked in a small indie bookstore where we had those big release events every summer, starting somewhere in the middle of the series. But I never finished all the books. Twice I have begun again, because I needed to remember the story and the characters. The last time I made it through The Order of the Phoenix. But I still love them every time I read them so one day I will get through them all! Thanks for bringing it all back for me this morning.

  4. I have not read this book, but I just saw the preview of the movie, which looked fantastic. (In case you are wondering, I saw the preview when I went to see The BFG with the kids, which is a wonderful movie. It doesn’t have the bells and whistles that will automatically make it a blockbuster, but it is a great family movie and a great adaption of the book.)

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