In its new format, Pottermore is more of a site that will keep Potterheads up to date with wondrous news of the wizarding world.
I have reclaimed my magical name and Hogwarts house – Ravenclaw in case you were wondering – and am pleased to report that I am back on the revamped Pottermore site.
Until now, it was a space where I would slink off during writing breaks to brew a potion (I was usually T for troll), cast a spell (was a little better at that) and unlock secrets from the Harry Potter stories.
But now in its new format, Pottermore is more of a site that will keep Potterheads up to date with news of the wizarding world of Harry Potter.
A voice message from JK Rowling welcomes fans to Pottermore, which she calls her “magical corner of the internet, a place where you can explore her writing, both familiar and new. And where you can read features, articles, and news from the Pottermore team”.
If you’re already a member, then you can retain your user name and house. I was quite tempted to sort myself again, but then I was a little scared that I would get Hufflepuff this time around. So I decided to let sleeping Hippogriffs lie and stayed with fellow house members, Cho Chang and Luna Lovegood.
At Pottermore, you can still revisit the books, along with JK Rowling’s thoughts about the characters, the plot or the setting.
The newest post by the author takes muggles into a previously forbidden world – an exploration of “11 long-established and prestigious wizarding schools worldwide”.
The jade palace of Mahoutokoro is an ancient Japanese school where robes change colour as the wizards grow wiser (or darker). Quite like karate’s many coloured belts, I imagine.
Then there’s Uagadou which is situated in the Mountains of the Moon in Africa. At this largest of all wizarding schools, spells are cast by hand gestures or pointing fingers.
The Brazilian Castelobruxo sounds quite intriguing with its golden rock edifice guarded by the Caipora spirit-beings. Apparently, Peeves is nothing compared to these feisty beings.
If you recall, Bill Weasley had got something nasty in post from a penfriend – turns out it was a Castelobruxo student who was disappointed that his friend couldn’t afford the trip to Brazil to visit him.
The fourth one, Ilvermorny from North America, is yet to be revealed but Rowling’s hinted that smart Potterheads will be able to figure this one out.
I have a few thoughts, but am currently trawling the internet for more ideas. So far we have learnt about seven wizarding schools – including Durmstrang and Beauxbatons – which means we can expect to hear more from Rowling in the future.
Browsing through Pottermore makes you feel like a beetle on a window pane – nudge, nudge Rita Skeeter – and getting a sneak peek into the very busy Potter world.
For instance, we sit far-away-from-London wishing that we had a portkey to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the eighth story that unfurls 19 years later.
We read longingly about the casting of the play – good going there, and the creative process between Rowling, director John Tiffany, and writer Jack Thorne.
Thoughts threaten to overwhelm us, until we need a pensieve to mull over the many strands – how and when will we get to see the play which officially premieres in July, and will the production come to India.
Dementors hover over that thought, after all it’s not like Harry Potter: The Exhibition, the international travelling exhibition has come down here.
There are also updates on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a movie spin-off that will be out in cinemas in November 2016.
Set in 1926 in New York, this is the story of Magizoologist Newt Scamander, the author of the eponymous textbook on the wizarding world’s magical creatures.
Scamander, played by Eddie Redmayne, comes to New York with a suitcase full of magical creatures. And in what sounds like a Pandora twist, the creatures are let loose in New York by mistake.
A new behind-the-scenes preview has just been released and it reveals details about the casting.
Porpentina Goldstein, played by Katherine Waterston; her sister Queenie Goldstein, played by Alison Sudol; and muggle Jacob Kowalski, played by Dan Fogler, come together with Scamander to form an unlikely quartet in this film’s quest.
Colin Farrell plays a powerful MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America) Auror, we are told. In the behind-the-scenes preview, Redmayne says, “This world, it’s been a wonder really.” Yes, we know that.