07/15/05 — Wizard's latest adventure hits shelves tonight

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Wizard's latest adventure hits shelves tonight

By Barbara Arntsen
Published in News on July 15, 2005 1:46 PM

It's been two years since Harry Potter fans have had a fresh fix of Hogwarts magic.

That's about to change.

At midnight tonight, bookstores across the country will begin selling "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince."

The sixth installment in the J.K. Rowling's series on the young English wizard and his battle against the evil Lord Voldemort was expected to be delivered to bookstores late this week in preparation for the anticipated rush of eager buyers.

Secrecy about the book's contents is at an all-time high, and advance review copies are difficult, if not impossible, to obtain. A handful of copies have been mistakenly sold at bookstores in the U.S. and Canada but the sales sparked immediate legal action.

The Books-A-Million bookstore on Berkeley Boulevard wasn't expecting its Potter delivery until early today. But Pam Oates, general manager of the store, said the books will be ready for sale by midnight.

The fun, however, will start long before that. Books-A-Million is hosting a Harry Potter party tonight, beginning at 9 p.m. The event starts with face painting, trivia contests, a school for witchcraft and wizardry and special craft projects. People who wear a Harry Potter costume will have a chance to win a free copy of the book.

So far, the Goldsboro store has pre-sold almost 300 of the books.

Books-A-Million will stay open until 2 a.m. Saturday, giving readers a chance to peruse through the new book with other Potter fans at the store. For those who can't stay up that late, the store will host more "magical events" from 9 a.m. until noon on Saturday.