And here we have another component of this Harry Potter themed week, Part Three of what I have titled as Pulling a Pottermore (because if they can repeat and/or stretch out a tiny bit of content, so can I). This time I’m looking at the third of the three Potter Presents e-books, from my perspective anyway, Short Stories from Hogwarts of Power, Politics and Pesky Poltergeists (which I shall shorten to Hogwarts Politics).
Like Hogwarts Heroes and the Hogwarts Guide, Hogwarts Politics covers a variety of tenuously linked subjects by splitting them into sections. It covers, as you would expect, some important people, including an extensive list of past Ministers of Magic, potions masters, and, for the sake of randomness, Peeves. Once again though, the most important question is whether or not it provides any new content for fans.
So, let’s admire the cover for a second because I’ve gotten into a pattern and I’ll stick to it. It mirrors the other Short Stories From Hogwarts book (Heroes) by setting silhouettes and smoke dance in front of an arched stain glass window. Pretty enough. Does the job. What more can you ask for? Oh yeah, new content!
As with the previous entry on the Hogwarts Guide, Hogwarts Politics has more bitty sections and I can’t be bothered repeating myself over and over, listing that there’s no new information in the Azkaban section or the potions section or the cauldron section… There might be something in the Umbridge part but I got really lazy and couldn’t be bothered to check through each paragraph to see if it was only mostly a repeat of what you can find on Pottermore itself. I did double check with the Peeves section, purely because the single new (final) sentence was just so abruptly tapped on but that was the only original content in that part. Basically, most of the sections are pretty much straight rips from Pottermore.
The one place that Hogwarts Politics did provide new content was in the large section about Horace Slughorn. Seriously, it takes up like half the book. And – unbelievable though it may seem – I couldn’t find that same information on Pottermore itself. It is apparently some genuine new content! Slughorn’s part of the e-book is rather beautiful and heart-wrenching because you get to understand more about a rather neglected character. Yes, he is vain and snobbish, but Slughorn is also kind-hearted and seeking redemption throughout much of his story. You get such an in-depth look into his character and I really appreciated it.
In truth, the section on Slughorn was the redeeming factor of Hogwarts Politics. It was pretty much all new content and took up around 50% of the book. Add that to the one sentence in Peeves’ section and, being generous here, maybe something in Umbridge’s, and it reaches a landmark figure of 55% new content. Amazing! It’s also one of the longer e-books from Pottermore Presents, having taken me around 40 solid-ish minutes to read it. Is it worth the £1.99? Maybe mashed up the three books to only include bits that had new content (e.g. the Peeves section would sneak its way through because of that one sentence but the bit about Ministers would vanish, maybe replaced by the McGonagall section from Hogwarts Heroes). I still rather resent paying for repeated information that I could have read online for free. However, the Hogwarts Politics e-book is definitely the best of the (rather bad) bunch.
The other parts of Pulling a Pottermore –