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Harry Potter-- He's Here Again!

Harry Potter
CBS
Finally, the hour millions of kids have been waiting for has arrived: as of midnight Friday, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire goes on sale at bookstores and over the Internet.

It’s the latest in a series of wildly popular books about an orphan boy at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

CBS News Correspondent Anthony Mason reports that author J.K. Rowling has found the magic touch with kids.

In the Seattle warehouse of Amazon.com, they were under strict orders to keep the cover, even the plot of the summer's hottest book, top secret. So copies of the fourth Harry Potter novel have been hoisted to the highest shelves and placed under surveillance.

"Which means you can't reach them unless you're some superclimber," says Amazon's Lyn Blake. "We have them roped off and guarded with security guards."

Amazon already has hundreds of thousands of orders.

"We're averaging, I don't know, 5,000 units a day at this point," says Blake.

The first print run by the book's British and U.S. publishers totaled 5.3 million copies.

Together, the first three Harry Potter books have sold 21 million copies in the United States alone. For the past year they've formed a virtual blockade at the top of the bestseller list.

Popular mystery writer Robert Parker notes she used to make it near the top of the list, "but that was before Harry Potter. Never read Harry Potter. Down with Harry Potter."

Yes, the young wizard who has cast a spell on kids has authors running scared. Some prominent writers are rumored to have postponed their summer blockbusters, so they wouldn't have to go head-to-head with Harry Potter.

Not Janet Evanovich: "Fearless. We're fearless."

Her new book Hot Six is red hot, but its first week out -- "You know where I am? I'm number four on Amazon. You know who's in front of me? Harry Potter, Harry Potter, Harry Potter," says Evanovich.

The highly influential New York Times bestseller list has finally decided it's time to clear some room for everyone else. Later this month, all Harry Potter books will be moved to a new kids' category.

Meanwhile Amazon and other book dealers are packing up the new book. "Some of the ones you can see are already gift wrapped and ready to go out to our customers," says Amazon's Blake.

While millions of kids will be happy to see the new book come, many authors will be happy to see Harry Potter go.