10 Things You Never Know About The Harry Potter Books and Films: Critical Linking, July 9, 2017

Critical Linking is sponsored by The Disappearances by Emily Bain Murphy, an HMH Book for Young Readers.


1 – Why Harry’s eyes weren’t green in the films like in the books.

In the DVD extras for “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1” in 2011, author J.K. Rowling and Radcliffe discuss why they changed that important part.

Radcliffe, who has blue eyes, had tried on green contact lenses, but he found them uncomfortable, so Rowling said the only important “thing is that his eyes look like his mother’s eyes. So if you’re casting Lily, there needs to be a resemblance.”

“There is a very small percentage of people apparently who have a very extreme reaction to contact lenses. And I was one of them,” Radcliffe added.

So, which of these things did you know? Which surprised you? 


I’d like to give you a recommendation for “Pottymouth and Stoopid,” but I can’t.

And my daughter absolutely won’t. It’s not because of her young age — she’s just shy of 10 and will talk your ear off about books she loves.

It’s because when she read the words “best book for boys” and “boys are going to love this story” blurbed on the back cover, she put it back on the display. She wasn’t simply yielding to the implicit “this book isn’t for you, girls.” She was just angry.

And another excellent piece on topic of why gendering books is ridiculous


“I am a cemetery loathed by the moon.”

“You gave me your mud and I have turned it to gold.”

“Everything, alas, is an abyss, — actions, desires, dreams, words!”

“Dancing is poetry with arms and legs.”

“What matters an eternity of damnation to someone who has found in one second the infinity of joy?”

Baudelaire….teen goth?


When Jay Leibold started writing Choose Your Own Adventure books in the 1980s, no one told him exactly how to create a branching story with a passel of different endings. “It was a seat-of-the-pants, use-your-intuition kind of thing,” he says.

As the story developed, dividing along different branches, Leibold would map its shape on 8 1/2 by 11 inch pages. One page, two pages, then a branching choice. “There was lots of erasing, crossing out, trying again,” he says. As the story grew and the first half became more settled, though, a standard, letter-sized piece of paper wasn’t large enough to hold the whole map of the story. Eventually, he had to tape two large pieces of paper board together in order to hold it.

I’ve always wondered how the Choose Your Own Adventure books were mapped out. And now I know

Kelly Jensen: Kelly is a former teen and adult librarian and a long-time blogger at STACKED. She's the editor/author of (DON'T) CALL ME CRAZY: 33 VOICES START THE CONVERSATION ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH and the editor/author of HERE WE ARE: FEMINISM FOR THE REAL WORLD. Her next book will publish in Fall 2020. Follow her on Twitter @veronikellymars.