Ever wondered what the dedications at the beginning of each Harry Potter book mean? You can find all the answers on this page!
Harry Potter and the Philosopher/Sorcerer's Stone
For Jessica, who loves stories, for Anne, who loved them too, and for Di, who heard this one first.
Explanation: Jessica is JK Rowling’s twelve-year-old daughter. Anne was Jo’s mother, who, unfortunately, died of Multiple Sclerosis on December 30th, 1990. Dianne, or “Di," is Jo’s younger sister who she read Philosopher/Sorcerer’s Stone before Jo sent it off to be reviewed.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
For Sean P.F. Harris, getaway driver and foulweather friend
Explanation: Jo met Sean at her secondary school, Wyedean, when she was eleven. From JKR.com: “He was the first of my friends to learn to drive and that turquoise and white car meant FREEDOM and no more having to ask my father to give me lifts, which is the worst thing about living in the countryside when you are a teenager. Some of the happiest memories of my teenage years involve zooming off into the darkness in Sean's car. He was the first person with whom I really discussed my serious ambition to be a writer and he was also the only person who thought I was bound to be a success at it, which meant much more to me than I ever told him at the time.”
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
To Jill Prewett and Aine Kiely, the godmothers of Swing
Explanation: Jill Prewett and Aine Kiely were JK Rowling's flatmates when she lived in Portugal. They used to visit a club/restaurant called "Swing" regularly. Because they spent so much time there, Jo called themselves its godmothers. (Thanks, Charlotte!)
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
To Peter Rowling, in memory of Mr Ridley and to Susan Sladden, who helped Harry out of his cupboard
Explanation: Peter Rowling is JK Rowling's father. Mr Ridley refers to Ronald Ridley, an old family friend of the Rowlings. This man's name was the inspiration for Ron Weasley's name. We are not certain who exactly Susan Sladden is, but she could be the Susan Jo once referred to in an interview as the woman who used to look after Jessica (Jo's daughter) while Jo worked on the Harry Potter books. (Thanks to the HP Lexicon via Lesley!)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
To Neil, Jessica and David, who make my world magical
Explanation: Dr. Neil Murray is Jo's husband, Jessica, her daughter, and David, her son.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
To Mackenzie, my beautiful daughter, I dedicate her ink and paper twin
Explanation: Mackenzie Jean Rowling Murray, Jo's third child, was born on January 23rd, 2005. According to JKRowling.com: "She is ridiculously beautiful, though I suppose I might be biased."
According to Emerson, who saw Mackenzie when he visited Jo's house to interview her: "She's a cute pink ball."
"I dedicate her ink and paper twin" - Mackenzie and Book 6 were being "made" (developed/written) around the same time, and were both finished (born/published) almost simultaneously, hence Mackenzie's "ink and paper twin".
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
The dedication of this book is split seven ways: to Neil, to Jessica, to David, to Kenzie, to Di, to Anne, and to you, if you have stuck with Harry until the very end.
Explanation: The "seven-way split" refers to some of those with whom Jo has shared her life while writing Harry; Dr. Neil Murray is Jo's husband; Jessica, David, and Mackenzie are her children; Di is Jo's younger sister, Dianne; Anne is Jo's mother who died at 45 of MS (although Jo's mother did not know of the books since she died early on, Jo has said her death had a profound influence on how the series was written), and the final dedication is to all the fans who have made Harry's journey their own.
You can e-mail in information you may have regarding any of the people on this page to ciaran at staff dot mugglenet dot com and make the subject "Book Dedications."
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