Author: J. K. Rowling
Publisher: Pottermore Publishing
Originally Published: December 13, 2007
Genre: Fantasy Fiction, Anthology
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
“The Tales of Beedle the Bard, a wizarding classic, first came to Muggle readers’ attention in the book known as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Now, thanks to Hermione Granger’s new translation from the ancient runes, we present this stunning edition with an introduction, notes, and illustrations by J.K. Rowling, and extensive commentary by Albus Dumbledore.
Never before have Muggles been privy to these richly imaginative tales: “The Wizard and the Hopping Pot,” “The Fountain of Fair Fortune,” “The Warlock’s Hairy Heart,” “Babbitty Rabbitty and Her Cackling Stump,” and of course “The Tale of the Three Brothers.” But not only are they the equal of fairy tales we know and love, reading them gives new insight into the wizarding world.”
I listened to The Tales of Beedle the Bard on Audible, and it was actually the first time I had even heard of it. I have been a Harry Potter fan my entire life, buying the books the night they came out and watching all the movies multiple times over, so when I saw this I knew I had to give it a listen.
The book is a collection of short stories, fables like our fairy tales of Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty. They are prefaced with the fact that many wizards read these stories as they grow up and are beloved amongst much of the wizarding world. There five stories included in the collection (listed in the Amazon description above), the most famous being The Tale of the Three Brothers. All of the stories are interesting and worth reading in their own right, regardless of their popularity.
One of my favorite things about this collection was that there are interstitials between each story from the perspective of Albus Dumbledore. He analyzes the stories in regards to what they mean for the wizarding world and how the stories have been edited and changed over the years. He adds in bits about the Harry Potter story we know and relates it to many characters from them. It really adds to the world building of the entire universe and makes everything feel like one cohesive thing. J. K. Rowling will never cease to amaze me with her talent for creating a world filled with rich lore and backstory. The fact that she wrote these parables and they feel as natural as anything else she’s written is honestly impressive to me.
I also need to talk about the voice acting here. The actors all did an amazing job imagining each of these characters and creating something that was genuinely great to listen to. I enjoyed each of the stories and was captivated by all of the characters. The use of sound effects behind all of the big story beats was another nice touch. All of these small details culminated in a work that you could tell was crafted with care and respect for the franchise we all hold near and dear.
I can recommend this, especially in audio format, to any Harry Potter fan, although I’m sure most of you have read this long ago. I don’t know how this slipped past me for so long, but I am glad I finally got around to it. If you haven’t read it, or if you just want to try the audio version, I would say to go for it. You won’t be disappointed, this is one of the best audiobook experiences you will find.
As always, thanks for reading! If you liked this review or you just want to gush about Harry Potter (I’m always down for that), leave a comment down below or reach out to me on social media. Check back for new posts (at least) every Wednesday and Saturday, or sign-up via email to be sure you never miss anything!