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The Deathly Hallows Lectures: The Hogwarts Professor Explains the Final Harry Potter Adventure

4.27  ·  Rating Details ·  468 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
The fastest-selling book in publication history, HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS was a critical success and is loved by fans around the world. In THE DEATHLY HALLOWS LECTURES, John Granger reveals the Potter finale's brilliant details, themes and meaning, and the answers to questions like these:
* What five writing tricks does Joanne Rowling use to work her story magic
Paperback, 290 pages
Published July 15th 2008 by Zossima Press
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Jan 26, 2011 Mindy rated it it was amazing
If reading through the Harry Potter series didn't alert you to the genius that is J.K. Rowling, this book will certainly set off the alarms. If you already knew the books were brilliant, this book will open your eyes further and tell you how much genius you missed. It's evident after reading the Harry Potter series that Ms. Rowling had her stories planned from the beginning, throwing in tantalizing hints about future story lines and bringing everything to a close by the end of the Deathly Hallow ...more
Apr 13, 2009 Michael rated it really liked it
Excellent literary analysis of The Deathly Hallows. Some parts are more readable than others, but Granger's analysis is spot on. He does a great job covering all three layers of meaning in this book -- the surface level, the moral/edifying level, and the alchemical/metaphysical level.

Some of his thoughts on the seeing eye/I struck me as seemingly pantheistic, e.g., the unicity of all things or seeing beneath the surface of things to behold the Logos/Christ there. But on further reflection, it d
Adam Ross
Jan 16, 2009 Adam Ross rated it really liked it
Shelves: literary-study
For serious readers of Harry Potter. Granger is an excellent writer and critic, and does a close reading of the Deathly Hallows. The book pays attention to detail, but wanders into very esoteric areas in the last three chapters and it seems Granger may be trying to claim more territory than is possible to do. He ventures into detailed discussions of Coleridgian "natural theology," the inner-self/logos, and a highly technical discussion of the Eastern Orthodox view of images/iconographic symbolis ...more
Jul 20, 2011 Shannon rated it liked it
I want to start by saying that this book needs a really good edit - get someone on that John!

What started out as an amazingly wonderful look at the pure genius that is JK and her writings seemed to turn more into a "grasping at straws" book in some of the chapters. The first three chapters and the fifth, I found to be super interesting and they left me wondering whether JK is even more of a literary god than I ever thought possible or whether it all just happened to fit. I now really wonder how
Aug 03, 2011 Sarah rated it it was ok
This provided some good insight into the final book in the Harry Potter series. I learned why JK wrote the way she did, along with more specific things like why Harry and Lily's eyes are green (why Harry has his mother's eyes). In order to find these things out, however, you really need to plow through a ton of information. I felt like I was reading a text book, but the book was filled with terms I didn't quite understand. So, I had to skim most of it and get the gist of what the writer was sayi ...more
We read excerpts from this for my Children's Literature class, and I loved them so much that I went on to buy the book. Mr. Granger's style is very engaging. His analysis is far-reaching but interesting.
Feb 16, 2013 Angelshona rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kristen Darienzo
May 18, 2017 Kristen Darienzo rated it liked it
Shelves: author-rowling
"Rereading a book isn’t the sign of a fanatic or someone who just can’t get it the first time; it’s the hallmark of a serious reader."

I love the idea behind this book (as a huge Harry Potter fan, how could I not?), but I feel like their was something off with the flow of the chapters. The chapters didn't mesh well sliding into one another, which made the read very choppy and hard to keep up with. Chapters fluctuate between being so incredibly interesting that I don't want to stop reading for eve
Aug 12, 2014 Robert rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
As most other reviewers have noted, this book suffers from being slapped together and badly needs a revised edition with serious editing. That being said, it does bring together most of Granger's deep insights into JKR's literary methods and intentions. It's well worth reading, especially if you haven't read Granger's earlier 5 Keys book.

The only really disappointing lecture for me is Chapter 6: "I always thought Dumbledore was gay". While Granger's basic thesis is correct that authorial additio
Margery Bayne
Jun 08, 2015 Margery Bayne rated it really liked it
This is a dense read and is definitely not for your casual reader. It is an in depth literary analysis that made me feel like I was back in my college class on aesthetics and interpretation. If you ever need a resource for some snooty type who just dismisses Harry Potter as a surface level children's tale, however good or popular of one, point them to this book and other's by John Granger. If you personally are looking for an easier to read literary-lensed analysis of Harry Potter, I would sugge ...more
Aug 02, 2010 Bookworm1858 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2010
The Deathly Hallows Lectures by John Granger
Zossima, 2008
276 pages
Non-fiction; Harry Potter
2/5 stars

Source: Library

Summary: An examination of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows to look at its multiple layers and meanings and argue for the greater significance of these children's books.

Thoughts: I had read some other Granger books and while there were some boring sections, I thought it would be worth it to read some more. I was wrong-I was so bored and I struggled to finish it (I'm not sure why
Evan Hays
Jan 19, 2011 Evan Hays rated it really liked it
Shelves: modern-myths
A little unfortunate that it was thrown together so hastily (I try not to complain about this, but the editing is really terrible), but the content is great. John Granger is awesome! I plan to read his other ones about the Harry Potter books as well.

His basic point is the evaluate Deathly Hallows and all the books seriously, as they should be. He shows convincingly the various literary/religious/philosophical backgrounds upon which she draws to writer her books. Seeing the books in this light is
Jun 13, 2011 Lindsay rated it it was ok
This was the second book I picked up by John Granger, the self-titled Hogwarts Professor. In anticipation of the final movie coming to theaters, I thought this would be a good choice, but I was not left with that same joy I felt after reading "Harry Potter's Bookshelf." That book felt more like a treasure hunt, while this was dense and repetitive especially as it related to the alchemical interpretation of the novel. While Granger is clearly a smart man and careful reader, I did not feel this bo ...more
Jul 26, 2011 Diane rated it it was amazing
John Granger unlocks some of the more hidden, deeper meanings in The Deathly Hallows as well as the whole popular Harry Potter series. Reading this book gave me a greater awareness of J.K. Rowling's remarkable achievement in writing these books. The arguments he makes for his theories about these books are backed up by a rich understanding of literature, knowledge about Alchemy and traditional Biblical symbolism. After reading Granger's book I have a whole new appreciation for the Harry Potter s ...more
May 06, 2012 Elijah rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I didn't enjoy this book as much as Granger's other two that I've read. That said, he deals with a lot of deeper issues and advanced philosophical and theological concepts that I've barely encountered before (particularly in the last few chapters when he focuses on the eye as image and symbol). Overall, this was another good analysis of the deeper structure and meaning of the Harry Potter books, and it rekindled my desire to finish rereading the series. The biggest drawback was that it suffered ...more
Jul 29, 2011 Débora rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfiction
I’m a bit torn concerning this book. The first chapters amazed me and I couldn't stop reading, but towards the end it became gradually more and more tedious and difficult to follow. Also, I found some theories to be a bit far-fetched and almost impossible to comprehend, while others were brilliant and very easy to grasp.

I recommend the book to all Potter lovers, but beware… it’s not a page turner.
Feb 23, 2010 Melissa rated it really liked it
I am just not ready to let go of Harry Potter. This was a very interesting analysis of the writing styles used by J.K. Rowling in the books. I am not sure if everything he claims was intended by Ms. Rowling, but reading this book has taught me some about literature in general. I am not a literary mind by nature, so I appreciated the education. It has helped me glean more from books that I have read since.
Oct 16, 2009 Jen rated it it was ok
I bought his arguements about the Harry Potter books are alchemical -- he showed enough parallels and proved that J. K. Rowling would know enough about alchemy to structure the books that way. However, I thought the rest of his theories were weak and unproven. Also, the extrememly poor editing of this book (misspellings, stray marks, etc.) was extremely distracting.
Jul 06, 2014 Joanie rated it liked it
This book is definitely geared more towards those who are heavy into literature, English majors, etc. If you are looking for a lighter and more entertaining breakdown of the Harry Potter Series, I would recommend Granger's "How Harry Cast His Spell." The Deathly Hallows Lectures was a little too dry and deep for my tastes.
Amber Koppenhofer
Jun 11, 2011 Amber Koppenhofer marked it as to-read
I've read the first chapter of this book, and I find it very interesting, but I haven't touched the book in months, mainly because there are just other things I'm interested in reading at this time. Eventually I will read Deathly Hallows again, which will prompt me to want to finish this book. So hopefully I will return to reading this soon.
Jun 15, 2011 Jeanne rated it it was ok
Way over my head and more complicated than I want these terrific stories to be. I read Harry Potter for the fun of the story and because I care about the characters. I don't need to know how the last book mirrors the first or the symbology of the wands or the imagery of the eye symbol in the books. I read for enjoyment and not to dissect the books I read. I ended up skimming most of the book.
Jun 23, 2011 Katie rated it it was amazing
This was actually a mind blowing experience for me. My friends took to watching me read this book for their own entertainment because I had no control over my reactions. It was just SO interesting and eye-opening.
Dec 28, 2012 Karin rated it really liked it
Shelves: harry-potter
Would have given it 5 stars but Granger's part about anagogical symbolism isn't explained as clearly as I'd like, or i just don;t get it yet, not having heard of it before.

Also the book needs better editing.

Lots of good info in it. Will bee rereading it again later this year.
Sep 11, 2009 Paul added it
I'm half way through and enjoying it as much the second time as the first. I skim some parts, but love re-discovering the details of the horcruxes, Luna Lovegood and Xenophillius, her Dad, and Ron's detour, and the silver doe and...
Nov 13, 2010 Jaime rated it liked it
I can only give three stars because the editing was appalling to the point of pain. However, the lectures themselves are very interesting, if somewhat repetitive. I prefer other Granger books about Potter to this one, but it was still a worthwhile read and will make a good reference for essays.
Oct 24, 2014 Kaitlin rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
While mildly interesting, especially in light of my current theory classes, the number of facts this "Harry Potter professor" messed up coupled with the sheer farfetchedness of some of his arguments made me roll my eyes. It did however succeed in making me really want to reread Harry Potter.
Sep 14, 2011 Lauri added it
Shelves: did-not-finish
Far too academic for me. Could not get past the intro.
Julanne Wicks
Apr 28, 2016 Julanne Wicks rated it liked it
It was extremely interesting topically, but stylistically fairly dry.
Brooke Bernard
Jul 31, 2009 Brooke Bernard rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, fantasy
Absolutely wonderful. This book revealed so much about JKR's work and her sources, from alchemical works to C.S. Lewis to Dante. I could barely put it down.
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“Second, the reason to embrace and celebrate these novels as the countercultural event that they are is due largely to the subliminal messages delivered by Harry and friends in their stolen wheelbarrows. Readers walk away, maybe a little softer on the occult than they were, but with story-embedded messages: the importance of a pure soul; love's power even over death; about sacrifice and loyalty; a host of images and shadows about Christ and how essential 'right belief' is for personal transformation and victory over internal and external evils.” 29 likes
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