If all this spending time at home makes you want to indulge in a little nostalgia for comfort, British author J. K. Rowling might have what you've been looking for.
"Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone," the first book in the much-loved series about the boy wizard, is now available for free worldwide as an e-book and audiobook to enjoy throughout April. Rowling says the offer comes as part of an initiative to help parents, carers and teachers entertain housebound children, but there will be plenty of us grown-ups who will be eager for a trip down memory lane.
The audiobook is available in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German and Japanese, with the English version narrated by Stephen Fry.
The work is available thanks to a new online hub, Harry Potter At Home, which caters to younger children and can be found on WizardingWorld.com, the official website for fans of Harry Potter and the spinoff film series "Fantastic Beasts."
Each week on “Wizarding Wednesdays,” an email newsletter is sent out to subscribers offering a host of creative activities, quizzes and other ideas for kids and parents.
“The teachers, parents and carers working to keep children’s lives as normal and happy as possible while we’re all on lockdown deserve a bit of magic,” Rowling said last week.
“I hope these initiatives will give children, and even adults, a happy distraction during their enforced stay-at-home time.”
The "Harry Potter" series has been an unprecedented worldwide phenomenon in children’s literature, enthralling generations of readers around the world. The books have sold more than 500 million copies in 80 languages and sparked a $7 billion movie franchise.