Over the years the Tales of Beedle the Bard have been told to children across the wizarding world. In this collection Hermione Grainger has translated the original tales from their runes into modern english for mugs and wizards alike to enjoy. Accompanied by notes about each story found in Albus Dumbledores collection of scholarly artefacts following his death, the tales are elaborated on, the morals within them mused about and little snippet of information at Hogwarts revealed.
It is time I actually confess that regardless of the fact I’ve been a huge harry potter fan for years, my collection of The Tales of Beedle the Bard – the original release of the book, in hardback form which Bloomsbury released in 2008 and I bought straight away – has gone unread. I’m not quite sure why I never opened the collection, I knew I wanted to read them and I knew that it contained the story of The Three Brothers which is mentioned within the Harry Potter books, but I just never got round to it, until now.
Thankfully in my bid to take my mind off the fact that I still (after 10 days past my due date) don’t have a child to read bedtime stories to, I decided I needed a Harry Potter world fix. I knew it would capture me in the way I needed to be captured but none of the novels were jumping out at me, so I decided to read the ‘Tales’. I am so glad I did because I immediately apparated back into the world and found myself loving the stories, Dumbledore’s notes and JK Rowling’s footnotes. In addition there are illustrations that JK Rowling has drawn and added to the collection which brought the stories to life and I found them to be fantastic accompaniments to the stories themselves.
There are five stories within the Tales of Beedle the Bard collection and whilst The Three Brothers will be the most well known because of the Deathly Hallows novel, I think I found a favourite in Babbitty Rabbity and her Cackling Stump. Each of the stories have strong moral lessons within them, very much like the ‘muggle’ fairytales I was aware of when I was a little kid, and I loved that about them because of the idea created that wizard kids and muggle kids aren’t all that different after all. I loved Babbitty Rabbitty because of its moral story and because of the old washerwoman and her ways.
The notes from Dumbledore are brilliant too because they reminded me about how these stories fit into the world of Harry Potter as we know and love it from the novels, revealing little insider information about Hogwarts and the arguments that come up surrounding the purity of wizard blood. They provided a bit of background to JK Rowling’s literary universe that you wont get without scrolling through the thousands of hours worth of pages in Pottermore, and reminded me just how much work she must have put in to creating the world that so many people now love.
I am sad that I left it so long to read these stories and I will definitely not make that mistake again. In addition to this edition of the collection I have the ‘Hogwarts Library’ containing a second edition of this book, Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them which have also been left unread for far too long. With the Fantastic Beats movie due out next year I was planning on reading that at some point anyway but now I think I’ll be reading it sooner!The Tales of Beedle the Bard was first published in 2008 by Bloomsbury in conjunction with The Children’s High Level Group. To buy the book or for more info please visit: Amazon | Hive | Goodreads | Author Website