Re-reading this now that I know how the series ends is a totally different experience than even re-reading it before book 7 came out. Rowling's brilliRe-reading this now that I know how the series ends is a totally different experience than even re-reading it before book 7 came out. Rowling's brilliant at narrative misdirection; in this book, we only know what Harry knows. (In later books, we'll glimpse certain scenes Harry's not privy to, but in the first five books we know no more than Harry does.) Our assumptions are the same, for the most part, as Harry's. Red herrings abound. Even when we can see where Harry's wrong, we don't always know the truth. Brilliant.
This is also the book where things turn darker. I'll never forget the first time I read it. I was happily reading along, enjoying the magicalness (magickery?) of the third task of the Triwizard Tournament, feeling that this series was a light YA fantasy yarn, and BAM! I turned the page and everything changed. It still affects me emotionally, even on this, my fifth reading....more
I like this a lot better than I did the first time I read it (and this is my fourth reading of it). I reread it now to refresh my memory for the movieI like this a lot better than I did the first time I read it (and this is my fourth reading of it). I reread it now to refresh my memory for the movie. The first time I read it, I had a hard time enjoying it because Harry is dealt so much injustice: from the Ministry of Magic, from the new DADA teacher, and even from his friends and Dumbledore. I could feel Harry's anger and frustration, which made it uncomfortable to read the first time. But I think that is part of the brilliance of Jo's writing. She can elicit true emotions from her readers like few other authors can. Other authors may make the reader sympathize with their characters, but Jo made me empathize....more
This is one of my favorite books, and I am very excited to be reading it again in my Filmed Novel class. The adaptation we're going to view will be BrThis is one of my favorite books, and I am very excited to be reading it again in my Filmed Novel class. The adaptation we're going to view will be Bride and Prejudice, which should be interesting....more
I'd read this in high school but I wanted to read it again as I was reading The Eyre Affair. This is truly a masterpiece. It isn't easy to read by anyI'd read this in high school but I wanted to read it again as I was reading The Eyre Affair. This is truly a masterpiece. It isn't easy to read by any means (the language is difficult and Bronte literally goes on for two pages describing a stone wall) but the story is so engrossing that it gets easier as you go....more
**spoiler alert** July 2009 After my second reading of this book, I have so many more feelings and comments about it than I did after the first reading**spoiler alert** July 2009 After my second reading of this book, I have so many more feelings and comments about it than I did after the first reading. But I think those comments mainly deal with the series as a whole, rather than just this book, and this book (being the conclusion of the saga) just brings some of the brilliance of the entire series more fully into focus. I may take a page from Madeleine's book and write a review of the entire series. I also think that this is a series I could read once a year.
July 2007 Wow. I cannot believe it's over! This book was an absolute emotional roller coaster. I don't even know where to start so I'm just going to list some random thoughts:
1. I am exceedingly happy (and surprised) that the trio survived. I was sure Ron or Hermione was going to die. In the scene where Bellatrix is torturing Hermione, I thought that was going to be it and I was pissed that Ron never got the chance to tell her how much he loved her.
2. Along those same lines, I didn't really like how LONG it took Ron and Hermione to finally get together. I understand this is war, and there were more pressing things on their minds than dating, but they escaped death so many times that I thought they'd declare their love for each other out of the heat of the moment. It was cute how, once Ron finally embraced Hermione's passion for S.P.E.W., she lays one on him.
3. The death of Dobby was very sad. But Dobby would have wanted to die saving Harry Potter. This was not the first time he risked everything to come to Harry Potter's aid. I think it'll be harder for me to read the second time, though, The first time, I was so worried that Hermione was going to die that it numbed the pain of Dobby's death. But the funeral scene was very sad.
4. I was very saddened by Fred's death, but I wasn't altogether surprised. I never thought that all of the Weasleys would survive, and I figured it would be Fred or George. I was really happy to see Ginny, Hagrid, and Neville live. I was also sad about Tonks and Lupin, but I think it's intersting that Harry's godson was orphaned in the fight to defeat Voldemort just as Harry was. It'll definitely give Harry some insight into his godson's feelings. But my question is, who raised him? Clearly, he didn't grow up living with Harry, so did he get raised by Tonks' mother?
5. My "Yay for you!" character moments: Dudley shaking Harry's hand. Mrs. Weasley calling Bellatrix a bitch. Percy redeeming himself. NEVILLE stepping up and becoming a full-on leader with the DA, and then drawing the sword out of the hat and killing Nagini, allowing Harry to defeat Voldemort once and for all!
6. I wish we'd have had a few more clues throughout the series as to Dumbledore's past. I never even knew he had a sister, did anyone else? Even just a passing mention of her somewhere... I understand now why Dumbledore had to die. I mean, I knew it would have something to do with Harry needing to go it alone, but it was more than that. Had Dumbledore been around for Harry to ask about the Deathly Hallows, I think things would have turned out differently.
7. Voldemort's arrogance was his undoing. He was too arrogant to think there would be more to the prophecy, so he went after baby Harry, thereby fulfilling his own prophecy and equipping Harry with his own power, his own soul. He was arrogant enough to think that Harry's blood in his own veins would give him Lily's protection without giving Harry any ties to him. He was arrogant enough to think that his own wand would work against Harry, arrogant enough to think Lucius' wand would work against Harry, arrogant enough to think he could just steal the Elder Wand without earning it.
8. Let the Christ/Messiah comparisons continue: not only did Harry willingly sacrifice himself for all of mankind, but he even was, in a way, resurrected.
9. Didn't Rowling say that a non-magic person would use magic late in life? Who was it? DId I miss something?
10. And finally... SNAPE! I knew he was good, I knew it, I knew it!! Brent and I had just discussed Snape carrying a torch for Lily. Brent even called it that Voldemort was going to spare Lily because Snape asked him to, and that when Lily died, Snape left Voldemort forever. I was disappointed that we learned all about Snape at the end, though, I would have liked to find out little by little, and have Harry piecing it together. I guess this way was more dramatic though. I definitely teared up when Harry named his son Albus Severus and told him that Severus Snape was probably the bravest man he ever knew. ...more
This is my favorite Austen. I love the plot twists & turns and the way each character has their own voice & personality. Austen was brilliantThis is my favorite Austen. I love the plot twists & turns and the way each character has their own voice & personality. Austen was brilliant at social satire....more