12 Funny Things Wizards Do at Flourish and Blotts

Working at Flourish and Blotts in Diagon Alley seems like a dream job. Being around books all day, seeing all the latest releases, meeting celebrity authors – it’s a bookworm’s dream. And yes, it is a great job… most of the time. You can get some rather odd customers. Here are some funny things that wizards have done at Flourish and Blotts. Even in the magical world, you can still get some tricky customers.

 

This illustration of Flourish and Blotts is in Jim Kay's illustrated version of Sorcerer's Stone

 

 

1.  Customers Who Ask for a Book but They Can’t Remember the Author or the Title

I can’t tell you the number of times this has happened to me. It usually goes something like this.

Customer: “Hello, I’m looking for a book.”

Me: “Great, how can I help you?”

Customer: “Well, I don’t remember who wrote it.”

Me: “Right… do you remember the title?”

Customer: “No. Do you know what it might be?”

 

2. Customers Who Try to Find Books with Accio

A customer walks in.

Me: “Hello, welcome to Flourish and Blotts. Can I help you?”

Customer: “No need. I’ve got this. Accio Celestina Warbeck’s memoir!”

A loud noise of banging and crashing ensues as 24 copies of the book come hurtling toward the customer.

Me, looking at a large pile of Celestina Warbeck memoirs with a groaning wizard beneath: “That will be 72 Galleons, thank you.”

 

 

 

3. Simply Odd Behavior

Spots a customer dancing rather oddly near a cleaned-out area of the shop.

Me, wearing my best customer smile: “Hello, sir, can I help you at all?”

The customer is waving his hands around like he’s swimming.

Customer: “No, I’m sure I’ll find it soon; I’m looking for The Invisible Book of Invisibility.”

Me: “Oh, we actually don’t…”

Customer: “No, I’ll find it myself. Don’t worry. I can almost sense it.”

 

4. Customers Who Ask for a Book but They Can’t Remember the Author or the Title but They Know It’s Blue

Customer: “I can’t remember the author or the title of the book I’m looking for.”

Me: “Okay…”

Customer: “But I know it’s blue. Do you have any ideas?”

Me: Looks around at the hundreds of books in the store. “Not really. Sorry.”

 

 

 

5. Customers Who Try to Pay for Books Using Muggle Bookshop Vouchers

Me: “And that comes to 9 Galleons all up.”

Customer: “Okay, I’ve got a voucher here.”

Me: “Great. Oh. These are actually for Barnes & Noble.”

Customer: “What?”

Me: “That Muggle bookstore? Barnes & Noble? We’re Flourish and Blotts.”

Customer: “But you’re a bookstore, aren’t you? Can’t you just take these and then use them yourselves?”

 

6. Customers Who Ask for Books That Haven’t Been Published Yet

Customer: “Hello, I’m looking for the sequel to Ginny Weasley’s memoir.”

Me: “Oh, I don’t know that she’s written one. We have her memoir over there, though.”

Customer: “No, I need the sequel. It’s new.”

Me: “Well, I’m sorry, but we don’t have it yet.”

Customer, annoyed: “See, this is why people don’t go to bookstores anymore! You never have anything I need!”

Me, after the customer has left: “Yes, I’m sorry, we don’t have a book that doesn’t exist yet.”

 

7. Customers Who Think We’re a Pet Shelter

A woman runs into a shop.

Woman: “You haven’t seen my pet Kneazle, have you?”

Me: “No, sorry.”

Customer: “Okay, well, if you do, can you just keep him here? I’ll swing by later to pick him up.”

Me: “…. Okay?”

 

 

 

8. Customers Who Want the Impossible

Customer: “Hi there, I’m looking for a book on a certain topic.”

Me: “What topic did you have in mind?”

Customer: “How to keep a Dementor as a pet.”

 

 

 

9. The Customer Who Wants to Make an Investment

Customer: “Hi, do you have any signed books by famous people who are going to die soon?”

Me: “…”

Customer: “I want to make some money off it.”

 

10. The Customer with a Custom-Made Request

Customer: “Hi there, I’m looking for a book that has an owl, a toad, and a Bowtruckle.”

Me: “Oh, okay, um…”

Customer: “Also, it needs to be set in the future.”

Me: “Err…”

Customer: “Also, it can’t have any cats in it. I absolutely detest cats.”

 

11. The Customer Who Doesn’t Like a Particular Copy of the Book

Customer: “I’d like to return my book.” Unloads a softly growling Monster Book of Monsters.

Me: “Right, well, I’d have to check with the manager about that; we don’t usually do returns unless it’s faulty.”

Customer: “Well, it is! I got given this one for Christmas, but it’s not monstery enough. Could you at least exchange it for one a little less tame? Maybe one that has fangs? Or some scary-looking claws?”

 

 

 

12. The Customer with an Audiobook Dilemma

Customer: “Hello, I’d like to buy this audio recording.”

Me: “Great.”

Customer: “But you see, I don’t like this narrator. Do you have a different one?”

Me: “Uhhh…”

Customer: “I’d like Kingsley Shacklebolt; his voice is so soothing.”

Me: “The Minister of Magic?”

Customer: “Yes, that’s right. Do you have one with him?”

 

Thank you to Gabrielle Brooks for sharing these hilarious happenings at Flourish and Blotts. Wherever you get your literary fix, please have a thought for the assistant at the register. They may love their job, but they are not mindreaders (probably).

 

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Emily Lawrence

I was first handed my mum’s copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on my eighth birthday, and I’ve never looked back. As a proud Hufflepuff and part of the Australian-Weasley branch, I hope to one-day walk in the footsteps of J.K. Rowling and write my own magical stories. No matter where life takes me, Harry Potter will always be home.