First in line for Potter finale


Forget waiting around a mere few days for an iPhone. Two sisters are in the midst of an 11-day vigil for this summer’s hottest, “must have” low-tech phenomenon: the latest Harry Potter book.

Chloe and Sydney Bostian started camping out on Tuesday in front of Gulliver’s Books in Fairbanks to be among the first in their area to find out their hero’s fate in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

The seventh and final Harry Potter novel from author JK Rowling will be released at midnight on July 21.

What sort of sorcery could make teenage girls live outside a bookstore in this far northern state for 11 days?

“It’s just so addicting. You think you have it all figured out and then everything switches up on you,” said Chloe, 18. “It’s the big finale, and all the questions are going to be answered.”

They have reserved four copies of the book, but the wait is not about that. They wanted to beat their friend, Graham Tordoff, 18, to the front of the line.

“He beat me once and I’ve been in line first ever since,” Chloe said. “We’re pretty die-hard.”

The girls are living out of their parents’ camper, parked in the bookstore’s parking lot. During the day their parents — who are taking turns staying with them — move it to the customer parking area, but at night it comes right up to the store entrance — the front of the line.

Maria Papp, manager of Gulliver’s Books, said the releases of the last Harry Potter book only drew crowds about three days before its it came out.

“They took us totally by surprise,” she said of the sisters taking up residence outside her store. “These gals will be the first ones in the door and I’m sure they’ll be pretty ready to go home by then.”