"The Tales of Beedle the Bard," J.K. Rowling's Book of Handwritten Fairy Tales

In December, 2007, Amazon.com purchased one of only seven copies of the book in exsistence. From their site:

Amazon has purchased J.K. Rowling’s The Tales of Beedle the Bard at an auction held by Sotheby’s in London. The book of five wizarding fairy tales, referenced in the last book of the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, is one of only seven handmade copies in existence. The purchase price was £1,950,000, and Ms. Rowling is donating the proceeds to The Children's Voice campaign, a charity she co-founded to help improve the lives of institutionalized children across Europe.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard is extensively illustrated and handwritten by the bard herself--all 157 pages of it. It's bound in brown Moroccan leather and embellished with five hand-chased hallmarked sterling silver ornaments and mounted moonstones.

The titles of the five tales are:

1. "The Wizard and the Hopping Pot"
2. "The Fountain of Fair Fortune"
3. "The Warlock's Hairy Heart"
4. "Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump"
5. "The Tale of the Three Brothers"

Amazon.com has also posted more pictures plus a short synopsis and review of each story; because there are spoilers included, I won't give more information here. If you're interested in reading the reveiws, be sure to follow the link. (I read them - they're awesome and worth a few minutes to check out!)

http://www.amazon.com/beedlebard ~ Enjoy!

I'm fairly sure Amazon purchased this book at least a month ago, if not earlier. My father, who works for Amazon, told me of the purchase when he last visited in December/January.

In other news of the book, Amazon is working on ways to share the stories within without publishing the book, so hopefully we'll hear them soon!
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What a -cool- find, Becky - I'd heard about that book of Rowling's but had no idea Amazon had a copy or that (better yet!) they were posting stuff from it. I think I'll hold off on reading the synopses in the hope that someday soon the stories themselves will be available, but in the meantime just seeing what the book looks like is pretty darned neat!
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@ Patrick...

Not so much.
I just find JKR's work arid, banal, dreary, humdrum, insipid, laboured, monotonous, tiresome and vapid - or did you miss that part..?
Far better speculative fiction for teenagers can be found in the works of Philip Pullman and Susan Cooper to name but two.
For younger children, Tove Janssen and her Moomin books are outstanding.
JKR fits into the literary tradition of Enid Blyton and Arthur Ransome - who, admittedly, were good in their time, but that time has past.
May it be soon for JKR.
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@munky - As it states in the article:

The purchase price was £1,950,000, and Ms. Rowling is donating the proceeds to The Children’s Voice campaign, a charity she co-founded to help improve the lives of institutionalized children across Europe.

While I have not read the books, and likely never will, the movies were pretty awful. But, then again, they were aimed at children.
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Not to veer this conversation over a cliff but I've always been interested in working for Amazon.

Now back to the article! I wish I had a bajillion dollars or so that I can console myself. ;)
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@ Quasi Mojo - JKR could quite easily have donated three times that amount of dosh to the charity out of the ill gotten gains from her puerile Potter series.

@ Alex - see above.
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@munky & BikerRay: You both sound like you hate eating sour grapes. And besides, as my very "west coast" son says. "Don't hate the playa, hate da game!" And you both are surely hatin right now. Munk your opinion that she is of purile abilities doesn't matter. First place, opinions, like assholes, every body has one. Second, the masses dictate popularity and even if she shit a pile right on the entire series, people would pay millions again to have genetic material of the author.

I was even more amazed at the even more shallow opinions of the people at Amazon. Try to give you cherries and honey and allot would rather have the lemons. Go figure.
P.S. @Alex, loved your comments on this, nice to smile.
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Geez... I never understand why people randomly spout hate for no reason. Some of you guys don't like Harry Potter... OK! We get it! How your opinion implies/shows that Rowling is an idiot or a terrible person, I don't understand!

Is it so bad that many people enjoy something that you don't?? Is it so bad that millions of kids started reading for pleasure because of these books? Is truly terrible that not everyone has your exact same tastes? "JK Rowling only donated over $4,000,000 to charity from selling one book, clearly she's a terrible person because I don't like Harry Potter."

I'm sorry you guys are so angry that you can't live and let live, and that you're so opinionated that you can't just calm down and enjoy an awesome books series, because you're afraid it'll ruin you're angry person cred.

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@ Ali S. ~ Amazon is actually a great company to work for. I worked for their customer service for more than three years. The have customer service in the US, as well as MANY fulfillment centers and other jobs scattered across the country and the world. You can check out the jobs here: http://www.amazon.com/jobs ~ the benefits are fantastic, the pay is great, and they really try to foster an attitude that everyone's job is just as important as the next guys. I had an opportunity to meet Jeff Bezos, even tho i was just in customer service. : ) (and i'm not sure if it matters to you, but it was a first for me ~ i had more female managers than male ~ seniority doesn't matter ~ everyone is evaluated on an equal scale.)
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@ Mr Binky - I don't 'hate' JKR, I just find her work puerile.
As for getting kids to read, yes, big ups to that BUT if that's ALL kids are going to read then we're back in the Land of Suck.
There's a lot more to fostering a desire to read and a love of literature than foisting off second rate recycled pap on impressionable minds - come the day when they are confronted with a work that requires engagement of anything other than a candyfloss mentality (say, Moby Dick or Huckleberry Finn or Dune or War And Peace...), kids raised on predigested baby lit will likely as not throw said book in the too hard basket and never bother trying again.
The issue I have with the Potter series is that they are NOT great literature, not even great books, yet the works of JKR have reached the top of lists of the Greatest Lit. of All Time - voted their by people who'd previously never read anything more complex than a ketchup bottle.
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Sorry man, there are millions of people (with impressionable minds), young and old, who would say that Harry Potter IS great literature. My guess is you read the first half of book 1 (the most child-oriented book in the series) and didn't like, and choose to hate it. If you think Harry Potter is "predigested baby lit" or has a "candyfloss mentality" then it's pretty clear you haven't read them. Woohoo for you.

Again, I'm sorry you seem to hate fun, and other people disagreeing with you. Please, continue reading Moby Dick.
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Unfortunately, Binkster, I have read the first three Potter comics at the behest of friends and lovers, and that is how I formed my opinion of them.
Started to read the fourth and got bogged down in the tweeness and plain bad writing.
I read Moby Dick - and finished it - at 16, tvm.
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Munky, I seem to remember that Moby Dick was critically panned when first published, and that it's only become a "classic" over time.

Your opinion differs from millions of other readers who enjoy the books. That makes you smarter, dumber, or just different. Either way, going to the effort of commenting on a neatorama post and so passionately responding with such a wonderful, if not pretentious, vocabulary shows which one you hope we believe.
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