Harry Potter fans rejoice! Our favourite author has once again given us further insight into the lives of our favourite characters.
This time round, JK Rowling offers an explanation into the deep-rooted resentment that the Dursley family feel towards Harry.
Ms Rowling has released her latest piece of Potter backstory on her website, Pottermore, which is used to interact with fans around the world.
In this post, the 49-year-old author explains how Vernon and Petunia Dursley treated Harry so wretchedly because of their longstanding animosity towards his parents, James and Lily Potter.
She describes the Dursleys as “reactionary, prejudiced, narrow-minded, ignorant and bigoted; most of my least favourite things.”
The author of The Casual Vacancy also explained how she came up with their dreary names. “’Vernon is simply a name I never much cared for. ‘Petunia’ is the name I always gave unpleasant female characters in games of make believe I played with my sister, Di, when we were very young.” She derived ‘Dursley’ from a village near her hometown of Gloucestershire.
Ms Rowling also explains her reasoning behind Petunia’s lacklustre final goodbye to Harry that left many fans feeling disappointed.
While Petunia looked as if she wanted to say something to Harry, she merely cocked her head and left without a word. “She gave him an odd, tremulous look and seemed to teeter on the edge of speech, but then, with a little jerk of her head, she bustled out of the room after her husband and son.”
Petunia’s creator explains that although Harry’s aunt does in fact have a buried love for her sister, her prejudices and jealousies don’t allow her to acknowledge it and “the realisation that she might never see Lily’s eyes again almost struggled out” of her, but she wasn’t able to admit it.
JK Rowling certainly is one author who takes the sting out of losing your favourite series. As well as frequently providing us avid readers with backstory updates, we can also look forward to the upcoming Harry Potter prequel, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, featuring Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander.
We can’t wait!