The Volokh Conspiracy

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Volokh Conspiracy

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality is complete, and it is excellent


In addition to being Pi Day, today also marks the official finale of one of my favorite books written this millennium: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality. It's a fan-fiction version of Harry Potter (hear me out!) in which Harry is raised by an Oxford scientist and therefore trained in the scientific method and various other elements of rational thinking. He applies these critical thinking skills to his newly-discovered magical powers, and amazing things ensue.

I've already mentioned it here, and I won't try to reproduce further excerpts now. I will say that now that the series is over I can say that the ending is not at all disappointing, and that the author, Eliezer Yudkowsky, does a very good job of wrapping up all sorts of loose ends, including things that you didn't even realize at the time were foreshadowing something.

I won't say "trust me, you'll like it," because not all of you will. But I will say that if you read and liked Ender's Game, any of the Miles Vorkosigan books, or The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, I think you have a reasonably high likelihood of liking this too.

Many thanks to Mike Rappaport for originally introducing me to the series.