Harry Potter Books as Objects


Very interesting post on typesetting in Harry Potter. I’ve always wondered what part of the Harry Potter books’ appeal is their truly spectacular production values. At least on the North American hardcovers, the paper, the binding, and the art are all truly lovely. (The British versions–which come in separate children’s and adult’s editions–don’t seem nearly as nice.)

The Collectors’ editions–of which I have two–compare favorably to the “luxury” leather bound books one sees in magazine ads. Obviously, the massive numbers of books sold, the resulting economies of scale, and retailers enormous willingness to sell them near cost, makes it easier to justify the expense of making them. But I’d like to think that the care with which the books are manufactured has a good deal to do with their appeal.