'Accio Books!": Harry Potter Fans Promote Reading

Hermione would be darn proud of this one. The nonproft Harry Potter Alliance's "Accio Books!" campaign aims to donate 60,000 books to communities in need between April 2 and June 2. Potterheads will recognize "accio" as the wizards' summoning spell. Last year, the campaign broke records to raise 53,009 books for schools and communities in under-served areas, and this year they're hoping to break records again.

The Harry Potter Alliance is a registered nonprofit that "turns fans into heroes," according to its mission statement. It aims to make activism for equality, human rights, and literacy accessible to both young people and adults using the power of story. The organization takes inspiration from a quote by J.K. Rowling:

We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to Imagine Better.

This year's "Accio Books!" campaign will donate books to Kansas City's Operation Breakthrough, a massive early education and social services facility that helps children living in poverty to achieve their full potential, and the U.K. and Netherland's Borderline Books, which provides free books in loads of different languages to children who may not otherwise have that access. Of course, any book donated to your local community also counts, and you can record your contributions on the Harry Potter Alliance website. (Pics or it didn't happen!)

To add a little fun to the proceedings, the Harry Potter Alliance has tied "Accio Books!" to a House Cup competition, putting the Hogwarts houses against each other to see who can donate the most books. If you don't already know what house you belong to, you can be sorted on Pottermore. My house, Ravenclaw, won last year, so now it's up to Hufflepuff, Gryffindor, and Slytherin to see if they have what it takes. Not surprisingly, Slytherin is currently in last place.

Do what Hermione would do: Donate some books and participate in good old-fashioned competition.

Image: Harry Potter/Facebook