A 16-year-old boy
with a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead is all it took to send trucks and
postal systems worldwide scrambling down secret passageways in a quest to
protect their sacred cargo.
In preparation for
the Saturday, July 16 release of “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” boxes
of the book – its plot a heavily guarded secret – are being secured for
distribution at Muggle shipping warehouses across the globe. Boxes of the books
are being double-shrink-wrapped, kept under constant guard and shipped using
unannounced routes and delivery times, WBBH-TV in Fort Myers, FL,
extreme fluke, no one's getting this book early," Chris Metz, spokesperson
for distribution house Books-A-Million, told the television station.
Pottermania has cast
quite a spell – even the Unite States Postal Service issued a statement
assuring customers that they will do their best to make sure each copy of the
book – the sixth in the staggeringly popular series – arrives safely in the
hands of its owners on Saturday.
to have a role in helping young people discover the joy of reading,” said USPS
Chief Marketing Officer Anita Bizzotto. “Our employees will make sure that
hundreds of thousands of excited fans can enjoy the new book on the day it is
England, Pottermania has struck London’s Royal Mail service, which will be
calling in an extra 150 trucks to distribute half a million copies of UK-borne
author J.K. Rowling’s book from warehouses to delivery offices across the UK,
the marketing Web site brandrepublic.com reported.
“We have been
planning for the Harry Potter book launch for many months and are looking
forward to delivering copies ordered online to children, and adults, in all
parts of the UK on Saturday,” Richard Roche, spokesperson for the Royal Mail,
According to the Web
site, the British version of amazon.com has already taken 350,000
preorders for the book. Compounded with preorders totaling more than 1 million
from amazon.com and Barnes and Noble worldwide, the book is easily
expected to become the biggest-selling single item ordered online for delivery
on a single day.