As was argued in "Reading Harry Potter: Critical Essays" (Praeger, 2003), interpreting the underlying messages and themes of the "Harry Potter" series is vital for understanding the ways that we perceive and interact with each other in contemporary society. The novels and corresponding film adaptations have broken records with their groundbreaking sales and widespread acclaim; they have also generated a plethora of writing-by critics, academics, and fans. These works could easily be called this generation's most formative narratives, and thus warrant critical attention. This new volume of essays covers the entire seven-book sequence. Contributors consider a number of themes from a variety of perspectives. Areas addressed include religious themes, morality, race, magic, and other themes popular in discussing the books. Fans of the series, indeed anyone interested in the "Harry Potter" phenomenon, will better appreciate and understand Rowling's works and the impact of her stories on our culture and our times.