Perhaps I'm biased. After all, I read a lot and am supposed to think carefully about things, as a teacher. But there are plenty of 'action' heroes who rely on instinct and brute force: James Bond certainly hasn't got to grips with deconstruction. There aren't enough thinkers in the battle of good versus evil.
A lot of people think Hermione's a stereotypical nerd: certainly other characters find her bossy, interfering and impatient: even Ron and Harry do so at times. This, I think, says more about them than it does about her. It's a way of dividing readers and characters between elementary and intellectual souls.
I certainly don't want to get into any discussion of the film version: try typing 'Hermione' into Youtube and you'll enter an awful world of bitchiness, neo-paedophilia and American teen angst soundtracked by the drippiest of whine-rock.
Any character which promotes reading research and contemplation deserves praise. Here's a line for my new students:
I've learned all the course books by heart of course. I just hope it will be enough.Unfortunately, she occasionally lets the side down:
"Books! And cleverness! There are more important things--friendship and bravery…"Don't listen to her, kids. She doesn't really mean it.