A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that on MuggleNet kids can get information about every Harry Potter book and movie, as well as background information on the storyline's creator, J.K. Rowling, through the varied network of the links. There are loads of chats, fun trivia, and games to play. The chat and forum rules clearly state what's not tolerated and what the consequences are for breaking the rules. There are a few ads, but they provide support for the site. Parents should note that user-submitted fan fiction may be at a PG-13 level, and trailers on the site contain fantasy violence.
What's it about?
MUGGLENET.COM offers visitors news stories, rumors, trivia questions, plot theories, a newsletter, games, and much more. Read brief synopses of the books, learn what J.K. Rowling's cryptic dedications may mean, pore over explanations of such mysteries as horcruxes, and submerge yourself in Potteriana. There's an encyclopedia of creatures, spells, potions, and places, too. There's a games section, with Shockwave games involving quidditch, hippogriff herding, and spellcasting. Real fans will score high on the trivia games, and even muggles will do OK with the Harry Potter matching games and jigsaw puzzles.
Is it any good?
Created and maintained by older teens (and a smattering of twenty-somethings), this site offers everything a Harry Potter fan could want. In addition to the features mentioned above, there is a carefully monitored discussion forum with strict rules about what can be posted, including rules about what topics can be covered in fan fiction.
Similarly, the chat room seems well-intentioned and at the time of review, there were not any provocative screen names or off-topic posts. And the site does have a list of Harry Potter-related links it connects to, including some role-playing games that are more for adults than student wizards.
Online interaction: MuggleNet aims to have a positive atmosphere in chats and forums, and its rules for participation reflect this.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the phenomena of Harry Potter. Why do you think the books and movies have taken off?
If you were writing the next Harry Potter book, what would be the plot? How would you market the book?
Families can also go to the "Name Origins" section of the site and quiz each other on different terms.