By Janet Bresenham
Excitement about the weekend release of “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” has reached Clovis readers, but the mania over the fifth in the series by author J.K. Rowling appears to be more subdued on the local front.
Sales associates Nikki Reed and Angela Murphy-Dye at B. Dalton Bookstore in the North Plains Mall said Sunday afternoon that sales of the latest Harry Potter book have been good, but less than anticipated.
“There were maybe 30 people waiting when we opened at 8 a.m. Saturday,” Murphy-Dye said. “It was more steady.”
Reed said the store brought in three sales associates Sunday instead of the normal two, but the crowds didn’t materialize.
“We were expecting it to be really bad, but we haven’t been slammed,” Reed said. “But a lot of people are buying both the book and the more expensive deluxe collector’s edition of the book or the book and the audio book on tape or CD.”
Ondrea Duffy, 35, of Clovis said she went to B. Dalton at the mall about 10 a.m. Saturday to buy her copy of the fifth Harry Potter book, along with the unabridged, audio book on CD.
By 7 p.m. Sunday, Duffy already had read through page 448 of the 870-page book and had listened to the first few chapters of the book on tape, which is 27 hours long.
“I’ve been reading on and off when I can,” Duffy said. “It’s also interesting when you listen to it. It’s a different dimension. My husband and I like to listen to books on tape when we’re in the car.”
Duffy, a registered nurse who serves as a U.S. Air Force major with the 27th Medical Group at Cannon Air Force Base, said she spent part of Saturday watching the military parade and enjoying the “Salute to the Troops: A Homecoming Celebration” at Greene Acres Park instead of reading around the clock.
She also is lending her copy of the book to a friend, 13-year-old Miranda Luedke, who is visiting her father this month in Clovis.
“When I’m at work, Miranda is going to read my copy,” Duffy said.
“My copy is at home in Rapid City, South Dakota,” Luedke said. “My Mom got it for me. She put in an order ahead of time.”
The soon-to-be 8th-grader said she has “been a Harry Potter fan since I read the first book.”
“The day it came out — Saturday — we (Ondrea and I) were listening to it in the car on CD and reading it at the same time,” Luedke said.
Both Luedke and Duffy said they are enjoying what they have read and heard so far from “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.”
“It’s good,” said Luedke, who was on Chapter 2 by Sunday evening. “Some unexpected things are happening already in the book. I try to read when I have time.”