Harry Potter by J.K Rowling is the best-selling children’s book series in history.
The series consists of seven books about a boy wizard and his experiences with friends and enemies at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Rowling wrote the first book: Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone in Edinburgh, using The Elephant House Cafe and Nicholsons, which has now become Spoon, as her office. After 12 rejections, the first Harry Potter was published by Bloomsbury in 1997. The last title, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was released ten years later and became the fastest selling book of all time.
Although the author and the character are English, Edinburgh was clearly a source of inspiration for Rowling. The documentary JK Rowling… A Year In The Life showed the author returning to her old Edinburgh tenement flat where she completed the first Harry Potter book and describing it as the place where she “turned [her] life around completely. A lot of Edinburgh life can be seen in the books, such as George Heriot’s School which Hogwarts is rumoured to be based on!
Rowling completed the last book The Deathly Hallows on 11 January 2007 in the Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh, and marked the achievement on the back of a bust of Hermes reading: “J. K. Rowling finished writing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in this room (552) on 11 January 2007. The books have been adapted into a massively successful film series from 2001-2011 and like the books, is the highest-grossing film series of all-time. There have also been eight video games released to coincide with the film releases, as well as special Harry Potter editions of Cluedo and Scene-it. In April 2012, Pottermore, an interactive website detailing hidden parts of each book was released to the public. The site allows fans to explore the world of Hogwarts and enhance the reader experience.