The Hang Fire Books Blog

The rantings of a bookdealer in Brooklyn, New York.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Harry Potter Counterfeits

I heard a fascinating report on BBC radio this morning about Harry Potter in China.

Licensed and accurate translations of the Potter books are expensive and time consuming to produce so unauthorized publishers sell "creatively" adapted versions that beat the official releases into the stores and are offered at a much lower price. Also, at least one entirely original HP adventure (with Rowling's name on the cover) Harry Potter and Leopard-Walk-Up-To-Dragon has been released. Apparently the book draws heavily on Chinese mythology and martial arts and features HP turning into a dwarf after a 'sour-sweet rain'.

MSNBC covered the phenomenon here.

Cervantes (the first global phenomenon novelist) also faced this problem. After the first volume of Don Quixote was released, an unauthorized sequel was published: The Second Volume of the Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha: by the Licentiate Alonso Fernandez de Avellaneda of Tordesillas (pseudonym). Fearing the loss of his character, and damage to his reputation, Cervantes finished the concluding volume of Don Quixote just a few months before he died. In it DQ confronts the author-imposter in a Pre-Modern, Post-Modern throwdown that boggles the mind.

Does anyone have images of Harry Potter and Leopard-Walk-Up-To-Dragon? or more details about the plot? I think I want to start a collection of HP fakes.

My favorite piece so far is the Brad Neely dubbed, What's Up Tigerlilly-style accompaniment to the crappy first movie. It's called Wizard People, Dear Reader. You can find the whole thing in snippets on YouTube.


Nate said...

Cover art is here:

William Smith said...

Thanks! Should have checked Wikipedia. The Hobbit plagarism actually makes it more fascinating to me.