I’ve been trying not to write too many pieces on the continuing conflict across Syria and Iraq, but this particular story was just too heartwarming to pass up. As proven somewhat with the blockbuster performance of Warner Brothers’ “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”, the Harry Potter media juggernaut has still got it to capture the imagination of children and the dedicated fans all over the world. The Potter-books author and principal creator of the whole fictional universe, heavyweight author JK Rowling, has taken time off after writing the story of “Fantastic Beasts”, a distant prequel to Harry’s adventures, in order to share some love for the boy wizard with one of her social network fans, a young girl who happens to be living in the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo.
The Telegraph mentions that Rowling responded to a Twitter post by 7-year old Bana Alabed, who tweeted that she would love to read the first Harry Potter book “The Sorcerer’s Stone” after watching the film, as it would be a welcome distraction from the warfare raging just a short distance away from home, by sending her fan in Aleppo all seven Potter novels in eBook form. Bana’s mother Fatemah simply made a simple inquiry on how best to acquire the iconic urban fantasy book series with their country still a rather dangerous place with crippled communication services. To the family’s surprise the celebrated author would come through for them in a big way by sending digital copies of her novels for Bana over the internet, which mercifully had managed to remain operational in the city.
It would take only two days for the precious gift to be sent, courtesy of Rowling’s literary agent. But when they arrived, Bana tweeted back a picture of herself holding a handwritten sign thanking Rowling – her new friend – for the books. Rowling replied with a wish for their safety in Aleppo.
Bana’s Twitter account was opened for her by her mother just late this September, and she helps her daughter to write her Tweets. Their usual subject matter was to discuss life during the assault on Aleppo by Syrian government forces trying to dislodge rebellious elements that have holed up in the ruined eastern half of the city. Due to the dangers of walking out in the streets due to possible bombing, artillery and airstrikes, the Abaled family – Fatemah, Bana and her siblings Mohamed and Noor mostly stay indoors and are home-taught by their mother.
Ever since the Harry Potter eBook series arrived on their computer, Bana has been able to read them to her leisure on a tablet, with her siblings on either side of her.
Photo Credit to http://www.ndtv.com/