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An English Major's Commentary on 'Hogwarts School Of Prayers And Miracles'

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Author's Note: Hello, friends! My name is Grace Ann. I'm new to this whole fanfiction thing; but recently, I've encountered a problem that I believe this is the solution to [To what? You can't just end a sentence like that]. My little ones have been asking to read the Harry Potter books; and [You don’t need a ‘;’ if you’re going to use ‘and’] of course I'm happy for them to be reading; [This ‘;’ is also unnecessary] but I don't want them turning into witches [Heaven forbid they practice actual witchcraft]! So I thought….. why not make some slight [I wonder what your definition of 'slight' is] changes so these books are family friendly [These books ARE family friendly. In fact they’re classified as ‘children’s book’ and providesome very important values for kids to have] ? And then I thought, why not share this with all the other mommies who are facing the same problem? So-Ta da! Here it is! I am SO excited to share this with all of you! So, without further ado-

[Is it just me or does everyone else feel as if she's talking to 5 year olds?]

Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Harry Potter who lived under the stairs in a house on Privet Drive with his aunt and uncle [What happened to Dudley?]. He was a good, obedient boy who did all his chores ['Obedient' isn't the adjective I'd use to describe Harry. Try 'smartass' or ' sassmaster']; [Yet another unnecessary ‘;’. Shall I start a count?] but he felt that there was something missing in his life. Something big and special; [That's it, I'm starting a count] but he could not quite name it. He stayed up every night; [6] and wished for this special something; [7] but then one day, there was a knock at his door-and everything changed [This paragraph is all over the place].

"Answer the door, Harry!" his Aunt Petunia, a career woman, barked from her armchair where she sat with her feet up. She had short, curly blonde hair and never wore any makeup [I find it hard to believe she's a career woman and never wears make up]. Uncle Vernon nodded sheepishly from the kitchen; [8] and put a tray of moist, chocolate brownies in the oven.

Shouldn't you be doing that? Harry thought; [9] but he was a very obedient young boy, so he answered the door right away. He turned the brass, metal doorknob [As opposed to the brass, wooden doorknob?]; [10] and pulled open the heavy, wooden door.

On the porch was standing a huge, muscular man with a big, manly beard; [11] and he was dressed in a plaid, red shirt, blue jeans, and sturdy, leather boots [He's an ax short of being a lumberjack]. His chest was covered in a thick, unruly carpet of coarse, brown hair [Why is a description of chest hair necessary in a children's tale?]. He wore a necklace that looked to Harry like a lowercase T. Just looking at Harry feel happy, peaceful somehow [Who's doing the looking? This sentence makes no sense]; [12] but he couldn't say why!

"Good morning, kiddo," the man greeted amiably; and smiled at Harry. He had the peaceful, friendly sort of face you just knew you could trust [Remember kids: beware of pedophiles]. "My name is Hagrid. Could I speak to your mommy and daddy?"

"I don't have a mommy or daddy," Harry replied sadly [Shall I start a counter for the adverbs too?]; and looked at his raggedy, old shoes that were blue [I feel like a 10 year old's the author behind this]. Perhaps that was why he felt so lonely, he thought, not for the first time. Maybe that was what he was missing-a mommy and daddy. But no, that was not quite right.

"I am so sorry to hear that!" Hagrid uttered empathetically [counter n2: adverbs].

"You can speak with my auntie and uncle," Harry retorted politely [5]; [13] and blinked his big, blue [*green], childlike eyes.

[*Pulls out dictionary* 




past tense: retorted; past participle: retorted

  1. say something in answer to a remark or accusation, typically in a sharp, angry, or wittily incisive manner.
  2. (archaic) repay an insult or injury.

 So I don't think 'retort' is the word you're looking for]

"What do you want?" Aunt Petunia peered out the door with her narrow, suspicious eyes; [14] and she was wearing a baggy, unflattering pantsuit [That terrible woman! How dare she wear whatever she wants in her own house].

"Hello, neighbor! I was wondering if you have been saved," Hagrid exclaimed brightly [6]; [15] and tipped his wide-brimmed, straw cowboy hat [Hagrid's a walking stereotype at this point].

Aunt Petunia laughed a gravelly laugh; [16] and leaned forward on her sturdy, practical boots [British people don't wear shoes in the house]. "Saved? Don't tell me you are you one of those Christians?"

Harry did not know what that word meant [I find that hard to believe]; [17] but Hagrid's smile was the most peaceful smile he had ever seen. It made Harry feel warm and happy inside just seeing the glowing, radiant grin on the kind, friendly stranger's face [This is creepy. I know it's not meant to be, but it is]. He wondered why Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon did not smile like that... [Well if Dudley existed in this narrative, you would've seen them smile like that at him]

"Yes, I am," Hagrid replied kindly [7]. "Are you?"

Aunt Petunia laughed again; [18] and stuck her pointy, sharp nose up in the air. "We are too smart for that [So Petunia's also a walking stereotype]. Haven't you read Dawkins? God is dead! Dawkins proved that [You can't prove god is dead. I'm not defending the idea of god but there's no way to prove he's dead just like there's no way to prove he's alive. Not to mention death implies life and, typically, god just is]. Would you like us to educate you on the Dawkins?"

"What is a Christian?" Harry queried [Someone swallowed a thesaurus] innocently [8]; [19] and scuffed his shoe on the shaggy, yellow carpet which had not been vacuumed in quite some time [I don't know what atheist you've been hanging out with but stop implying we're all filthy].

"Christians are people who want to be good [*cough* crusades *cough*]," Hagrid explained wisely [9]; [20] and crouched down so he was on [*at] eye level with Harry. "We want to go to heaven after we die [So basically you’re good for the reward and not for the sake of being good. Do you see the problem with that? Because I do]. Do you know what heaven is, Harry?"

Harry shook his head; [21] and his big eyes were wide and curious [Harry has now morphed into an anime character with those characteristic big eyes].

"Heaven is a beautiful place where we can be with God."

Aunt Petunia smacked her hands over Harry's young ears; [22] and her voice was sickly [9] sweet when she said, "Thank you very much for your concern, sir, but he does not need your religion, he has science and socialism [I wouldn't say the UK is socialist. Maybe more than the US I suppose] and birthdays [I grew up in a Christian home and I had birthdays?]. Haven't you heard of Evolution? I have a very good textbook on Evolution that I could give you on it if you would like to learn things [Please do]."

Hagrid laughed wisely [a. How do you laugh wisely??? b. 10]. "Evolution is a fairytale [While the book about a talking snake and the earth's creation in a mere 7 days is totally legit]. You don't really believe that, do you [As a matter of fact I do. I believe it so much I’m currently studying it in uni. Get over yourself bitch]?"

"Yes, I do!" Aunt Petunia screeched [Never did I think the day would come when I agreed with Petunia Dursley but here I am].

"Well then prove it [This line is just as bad as the ‘if we came from chimps why are they still around?’ one. They both make me want to strangle someone]!"

Aunt Petunia could only stare at him [Me too, Petunia, me too]; [23. There goes my hope of her realising you can't just use semi-colons everywhere] and her big mouth hung open dumbly [11]. Here she thought she was so educated [I can name several creationists who are also educated. Many educated people are quite stupid, to quote Sun Bak]; [24] and always demanded that Christians prove what they believed in [Well the christian just demanded the exact same thing]; [25] but she couldn't even prove her own religion [a. Evolution isn't a religion since science isn't a religion, it's a set of facts, b. she’s staring like that because she can’t believe you just said that]. It was then that Harry knew who the smart one here was [Oh Harry, you young impressionable kid...]!

"Tell me how to get to this heaven place!" Harry cried wistfully [12], clasping his hands together [Well, step one: you die]. Sometimes, the wisdom of little ones is really [13] amazing [And yet adults never listen to us because they're 'more experienced' and 'know how the world works']. We think we grownups know it all [Yes, yes you do, and you won’t listen to ANYTHING that goes against your beliefs. It’s rather annoying at times]; [26] but then God speaks through the mouths of little ones [You were on the right track there for a second but you lost it. Ah well, I suppose you tried]; [27] and shows us how we are all mortals struggling along the path of life. Humility [Is there part of a sentence that was lost here?].

"All you have to do is be saved. Do you want to be saved ?"

"I do, I do!" Harry squealed, jumping up and down.

[Us faithless heathens who don’t want to be saved will toast to your honour when we’re in hell]

"Then pray the sinner's prayer!"

Aunt Petunia tried to stop him; [28] but she was powerless against Harry's pure, innocent, holy energy [His what now?]. Soon, Harry had said the prayer. Hagrid beamed happily. [I am a robot. This is how I speak. It is very riveting.]

"You're a Christian now, Harry!" Hagrid cried proudly [14]. 

[No he's not. Even the evangelican sect of christianity believes in baptism. You need to submerge him in a river for him to be converted. Why am I the one telling you this?]

Harry smiled but then interrogated, "But how do I be a Christian? I don't know how!"

Hagrid grinned widely [15]. "There is only one place to learn that-Hogwarts School of Prayer and Miracles [oh lord, we’re in for a wild ride aren’t we?]!"

Author's Note: SO what do you all think [It's worse than I originally thought]? I may not be a professional writer [Obviously]; [29] but I think I am being given the talent to pull this off in service of a greater mission =) [You are really, REALLY, not] 


- Grace Ann

[semicolon count: 30]

[adverb count: 15]