A good way to tell if a book is going to turn into a pop-culture driven modern classic is when it's fandom doesn't die. Harry Potter fans that loved the book when they were 9 still love the book today, helped along by the extremely successful movie franchise. The world hasn't been so captivated by a teenager with magical powers fighting an evil overlord since Luke found out he was a Jedi in Star Wars (and Star Wars fans are still loud, proud and growing in number).
For those of you that have never read it: When a letter arrives for unhappy orphan Harry Potter, a magical world opens up to him. For you see, Harry is a wizard! Leaving behind his awful aunt and uncle, for Hogwarts- a wizarding school full of ghosts, enchantments and mystery- Harry stumbles upon a sinister secret in his past, which sparks an epic adventure to defeat a shadowy evil mastermind.
After the first book you are left with a bunch of questions, foremost being:
*What sort of twisted monster makes a kid live in cupboard under the stairs?
* I am a muggle... or am I? (test a spell and see!)
*Is Snape good or evil? Evil, definitely evil. No, wait, good? Dammit. (This is a feeling you will become familiar with throughout the series)
You will also want an owl, a unicorn, and a real life chess set- in that order.
Through a twisting, turning mass of contradictions and complicated relationships Rowling takes you on an adventure like no other, with each revelation adding to the rich tapestry that will become Harry Potter's legacy.