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CHAPTER SUMMARIES WITH NOTES
Chapter One The Boy Who Lived
(Baby Harry is rescued after his parents' murder and is left on the Dursleys’ doorstep by Dumbledore.)
Rowling introduces the Dursleys as definitively normal. Mrs. Dursley’s sister, however, is extremely odd: she’s a witch.
The story begins on a particularly unusual All Saints Day, though the thickheaded Mr. Dursley is slow to pick up on how odd the day is. He drives to his job (he sells drills) and notices peculiarities such as a cat down the street reading a map, folks dressed in brilliant cloaks, and strangers talking about his wife’s sister’s family (those odd Potters). By the end of his workday, Mr. Dursley is still clueless as to what’s going on. Leaving his office, he bumps into an old man who calls him a Muggle, and at home he is met by TV reports of numerous owls sightings and shooting stars. Weirdness is afoot, and the Dursleys can’t stand it.
As the Dursleys fall asleep, the narrator’s focus shifts to the cat outside their house, the one who had previously been reading a map. A tall, cloaked old man by the name of Albus Dumbledore approaches the cat outside the Dursleys’ house. The cat, realizing it has been found out, transforms back into Professor McGonagall. McGonagall has been awaiting Dumbledore’s arrival in order to verify the rumors she heard: was the dark lord Voldemort really defeated by the infant Harry Potter? Dumbledore verifies and expands upon what she’s heard: after killing Harry’s parents, Voldemort tried to kill the infant boy but failed and broke his power in the attempt.