notgettingenough 's Reviews > Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling
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Jul 10, 2014

did not like it
bookshelves: childrens, will-be-regretted-on-my-deathbed


10 July 2014. Creepy fact: Manny asked me this morning why I had reinstated my HP review. The update said it had been done several minutes ago. Since I had spent the morning not on GR - yes, dear readers, it can be done - I am mystified as to how this has happened. But creepy, right? At any rate, I had been thinking about putting the whole thing back here, rather than on my blog, so here it is in full black and white.

--------------------------------------------


So, I keep getting hate comments for this review and I thought it would be nice if you all had a place you could get together and badmouth it. Announcing....

A new group:

People who hate my Harry Potter review....

Come this way:

http://www.goodreads.com/group/show/4...

I'd be honoured if you joined. And I'm really sorry to all the people who wrote comments here which I misguidedly deleted.

---------------------------
The REVIEW.

Enough. I'm putting this one to bed. I so don't want to finish it.

‘Not enough sex’ was my first thought, but then we do get to this part where boys are discussing the length and capacities of their wands and I perked up for a moment until I realised that they were actually talking about wands.

You will say that this is a book for children and that sex has no part in it, but, I think Randall has it right, as usual:

XKCD's take on young boys
XKCD's take on young boys

Now, I don’t know a whole lot about boys on the verge of pubescence, but I’m fairly sure they are more interested in willies than wands. Perhaps this book would have sold better if the author had regarded that piece of advice. (Note to self: check if anybody bought this book. Perhaps the author would appreciate my thoughts.)

---------------------------------------------

20 August 2013: My Harry Potter review has been flagged and censored EVEN though it isn't available to read on goodreads except via a link.

Given that the review itself has experienced its own form of peer judgement via the voting system and given that it has been up for a couple of years or more I wonder if this is part of the new Amazon way?

To quote the advice sent to me:

Your review of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone was recently flagged as inappropriate. As the review is not about the book, it will not be shown on the community book page. For more information about our review policies, please see our review guidelines.


The review guidelines are here: http://www.goodreads.com/review/guide...

A year later: I don't know if reinstating my review here means it will be reinstated on the Community pages. If somebody reading this knows about such things, it would be interesting to know.
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Reading Progress

06/12/2010 page 1
0.0% "I broke Mandy's heart today when she saw me reading The Black Cloud when I should be reading this. So the book is opened, I read the first sentence and yes, I can see why people read the next one too...."
06/13/2010 page 45
20.0% "Bugger the wizards, where the fuck are the social workers? I can't believe little children enjoy reading this tale of an abused child, half-starved, beaten, living in a cupboard. This isn't fun, it's HORRIBLE!" 3 comments
06/14/2010 page 85
38.0% "I'm taken aback at the poor quality of the writing, having recently finished Northern Lights which is far superior."

Comments (showing 1-50 of 330) (330 new)


message 1: by Paquita Maria (new)

Paquita Maria Sanchez You are blowing my mind with amazingness right now. Seriously, hands down the best Harry Potter anything review that I've read.


notgettingenough Kristi wrote: "You are blowing my mind with amazingness right now. Seriously, hands down the best Harry Potter anything review that I've read."

Kristi, why thank you. I was a bit nervous doing a fully blown serious critical review of such an important book...I'm so relieved you like it!


message 3: by Eric_W (new)

Eric_W Jesus, this was funny: ""Bugger the wizards, where the fuck are the social workers? I can't believe little children enjoy reading this tale of an abused child, half-starved, beaten, living in a cupboard. This isn't fun, it's HORRIBLE!"


message 4: by Manny (last edited Jun 15, 2010 09:10AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Manny I would have voted for this, but the Harry Potter wand/penis joke has apparently been copyrighted by Madeline and there may be legal issues. Just thought I'd make that clear.


message 5: by notgettingenough (last edited Jun 15, 2010 09:31AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough Manny wrote: "I would have voted for this, but the Harry Potter wand/penis joke has apparently been copyrighted by Madeline and there may be legal issues. Just thought I'd make that clear."

That is so mean. Some of us, Manny Rayner, have lives and haven't read every single bit of goodreads.

Um and some of us don't have lives, but still haven't read every bit of goodreads.

So, Madeline, sorry, haven't read your review, just making that clear since my honour has been impugned.


Manny I'm sorry... my last paper got rejected with snippy comments that I hadn't quoted enough background references. But you're right, this probably isn't the best way to address the problem.


Manny OK, I called my lawyer, and it turns out I can vote for this review as long as I file appropriate paperwork within 30 days. I told him to start off the process immediately. The things I do for you!


message 8: by Madeline (new)

Madeline Please, Manny. I cannot possibly be the first person to mentally substitute "penis" every time a wand is mentioned in Harry Potter. I think Freud actually rose from his grave briefly so he could read the books and do just that.


notgettingenough Manny wrote: "OK, I called my lawyer, and it turns out I can vote for this review as long as I file appropriate paperwork within 30 days. I told him to start off the process immediately. The things I do for you!"

Oh. You've voted for me now. I forgive you. If you vote for me you may impugn my honour as much as you please.


message 10: by Manny (last edited Jun 15, 2010 09:53AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Manny Madeline wrote: "Please, Manny. I cannot possibly be the first person to mentally substitute "penis" every time a wand is mentioned in Harry Potter."

Ah... you appear to be right.


message 11: by Madeline (new)

Madeline Sometimes you give me far too much credit, Manny.


Manny Madeline wrote: "Sometimes you give me far too much credit, Manny."

I've been checking, and I'm afraid it seems you're right.

You're not even the first person to do an abridged version of Romeo and Juliet! Apparently a guy called Shakespeare got there first. Though he didn't think of mentioning Stephenie Meyer.


La pointe de la sauce I put the blame on Manny again for this atrocious review.

I see a trend going on now, instigated by Manny of course, where goodreaders start every review commenting on the sex content and complaining that 'there just isn't enough' or having to replace words like 'wand' with 'willy'. A truly sad state of events.

I am truly outraged, of course not at you, NGE, you have the excuse that you are 'not getting enough' so it must be hard getting your mind out of the gutter, but at Mr. Manny Rayner who may not have started this epedemic but was most effective at propegating it with his honeyed words and clout.

Absolutely dispecable. ;)


notgettingenough King wrote: "I put the blame on Manny again for this atrocious review.

I see a trend going on now, instigated by Manny of course, where goodreaders start every review commenting on the sex content and complai..."


Dear King, I think if you check the history of HP on this site, or even just on this comments thread, you will see that Mannny has nothing to do with girls writing about wands.

But I'm complimented. I never would have expected to write anything worthy of attracting your spleen.


notgettingenough King wrote: "I am truly outraged, of course not at you, NGE, you have the excuse that you are 'not getting enough' so it must be hard getting your mind out of the gutter,"

PS: Thank you for being so understanding. You've made me question my motives, however. I can see it is necessary for me to try writing another review of this book after having had enough. Well, some, anyway, 'enough' seems a bit ambitious. I will report on this experiment, just the moment I get lucky.


La pointe de la sauce
But I'm complimented. I never would have expected to write anything worthy of attracting your spleen.


On the contrary, I am most honored to have basked in the glory of the most followed goodreader ;) actually I was an avid follower of your cookery notes, 'was' until I decided to cut meat out of my diet. Anyway.

You've made me question my motives

I think your motif is pretty clear NGE, it would be a 'moo point' (joey - Friends episode 7.8) to blame you for your review veering towards sex content, no need to question it. I just thought I'd take the opportunity to give Manny a friendly kick up the ass ;)

I would however be very interested in the results of your research and look forward to your report.


message 17: by notgettingenough (last edited Jun 29, 2010 09:40AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough La pointe de la sauce wrote: "actually I was an avid follower of your cookery notes, 'was' until I decided to cut meat out of my diet. Anyway."

My dear young King. Sorry, force of habit, dear young La pointe de la sauce just doesn't work...

I've just put up a vegetarian receipe for your benefit (pesto). I'm rather taken aback to discover that my recipes are so meat oriented. I have lots of vegetarian dishes I can talk about too. Though I confess, meat is never far from my thoughts.


La pointe de la sauce Thanks, I'll give the old pesto a whirl and pray that it is miraculously transformed into a steak; you don't happen to know any magic food recipes do you? Funny how this discussion has moved from Harry Potter to vegetarian dishes.


notgettingenough La pointe de la sauce wrote: "Thanks, I'll give the old pesto a whirl and pray that it is miraculously transformed into a steak; you don't happen to know any magic food recipes do you? Funny how this discussion has moved from Harry Potter to vegetarian dishes. ..."

A move for the best, if you forgive my saying so. Do you know I laid in bed for a while last night wondering about this business of turning vegetables into meat. Now, I can say, that I do make some vegetarian dishes that make red-blooded men who would die rather than not eat meat, weak at the knees. Soon enough they are begging for more. Yes, I am talking about vegetables here. As well.

So, I will dig out a few of these recipes just for you.


La pointe de la sauce Do you know I laid in bed for a while last night wondering about this business of turning vegetables into meat.

Now that's really sweet, classic ESFJ personality; caregiver and all that. I'm not surprised that 'red-blooded men' go weak at the knees for your vegetables 'as well' but never mind that, my veggie knees are weak as hell and getting weaker! Where's that recipe?


message 21: by notgettingenough (last edited Mar 27, 2012 08:48AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough La pointe de la sauce wrote: "Do you know I laid in bed for a while last night wondering about this business of turning vegetables into meat.

Now that's really sweet, classic ESFJ personality; caregiver and all that. I'm not surprised that 'red-blooded men' go weak at the knees for your vegetables 'as well' but never mind that, my veggie knees are weak as hell and getting weaker! Where's that recipe?"


My very dear jeune Monsieur La etc, I'm having second thoughts about this. You see, I suddenly started wondering if it wasn't anything to do with the vegetables at all, the men getting weak at the knees. I mean, it could be because while they are eating the vegetables I go down and un*** their ****** and then take out their ***** and while they are eating the vegetables, I'm ***** their ****. I'm not saying it is, but I'm not saying it isn't either.

I dare say I do some great things to do with potatoes and beans and carrots, but just how weak at the knees could they make a grown man?

And frankly, young La etc, you are way too young, I imagine, even to be reading this comment, though then again, you've read Harry Potter, so you should be up for more or less anything, I suppose.

So, I'm sorry. I'm recogitating the whole business. Maybe I could give you a recipe with no vegetables and no meat in it...I just don't know.


message 22: by La pointe de la sauce (last edited Jul 13, 2010 06:58AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

La pointe de la sauce We live and hope! But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves, a recipe in hand is worth more than any number of promised future 'expectations'. Very tempting offer indeed but I'll respectfully take the recipe as part payment for now, for now, mind you, with any other 'no vegetable and no meat' recipes held as payable as and when is feasible.


notgettingenough La pointe de la sauce wrote: "We live and hope! But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves, a recipe in hand is worth more than any number of promised future 'expectations'. Very tempting offer indeed but I'll respectfully take the recipe as part payment for now, for now, mind you, with any other 'no vegetable and no meat' recipes held as payable as and when is feasible.
..."


Okay, okay. Potato recipe posted. http://www.goodreads.com/story/show/2...


message 24: by Manny (last edited Nov 07, 2010 09:01PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Manny Enough. I'm putting this one to bed. I so don't want to finish it.

Not, you are so inconsistent. You've just spent several days trying to convince us all that the quality of a book is best measured by the number of people who read and enjoy it. This is one of the most popular books of all time. So why, pray, are you giving it one star and claiming you're unable to finish it? Though I must say I'm relieved. On your arguments, if Harlequin romances, typically read by hundreds of thousands of people, are good, then Twilight, read by hundreds of millions of people, ought to be a work of genius. It sounds like you may be backing off from that conclusion?

Hm. A thought just struck me. You wouldn't possibly have been arguing just for the hell of it and defending a position you knew all along was untenable? Perish the thought!

PS Thank you for the kind words about my Perec review :) Though I tell you again, Perec is better than you think. Remember that you're only reading him in translation, and this is an exceptionally difficult book to translate. Personally, I would say impossible, though I understand that Hofstadter has opinions about that which I haven't looked at.


message 25: by notgettingenough (last edited Nov 08, 2010 12:10AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough Manny wrote: "Enough. I'm putting this one to bed. I so don't want to finish it.

Not, you are so inconsistent. You've just spent several days trying to convince us all that the quality of a book is best measure..."


Eyes just opened, good morning Manny. It's Monday, how nice.

Not at any point did I say what you have claimed here, that the quality of a book is best measured by....but I do insist that popular books have to have highly worthy things about them and the idea that you guys have that you can simply demean an entire group of these people and their readership is mind-boggling to me. I will continue to argue my original point which is that they are WELL-WRITTEN. Why do I personally have to want to read a book because it is well-written? I'm missing something here.

In the thread you have dropped out of, I did compare Mills and Boon with fast food. It seems to me that some sort of food things that become hugely popular do so because (1) you HAVE to eat (2) cheap (3) totally in your face.

Mills and Boon is not like that. They aren't in your face. I genuinely asked how one stumbles upon one in the other thread. People go out of their way to get involved. That is SO impressive.

Honestly. Well, I have already said elsewhere, that fantasy is not my thing. I think GN will probably never speak to me again. (We have a thread on this, you were part of it early in the weekend.)

I don't understand why I have to read everything or like it. Quite patently there are going to be books of every type or even a genre that I personally don't like reading. It doesn't mean that the genre is wholesale unworthy in some way.

I decline to say that because I don't like a book that makes it 'bad' other than in the more personal of ways. Though in the case of this one, I don't really understand what is technically good about the writing of it. Despite having thought long and hard about it. What is good about it presumably lies elsewhere.

Still, in the thread referred to above,

http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

I did point out the bleeding obvious, that there will be better and worse examples of all types of literature. It seemed to need to be pointed out. You guys don't seem to understand that just because something is defined as 'literature' doesn't make it good. Nor do you understand that what is 'literature' changes according to fashion and some other equivalent of you guys in another few years will cut out stuff you think is 'literature', chuck it in the dustbin and revive some other book you thought was oh my god it just isn't literature. That IS what will happen. One of the dangers of the pretentiousness of calling one thing literature and other thing something else.

I do, however, wonder about fantasy. Maybe I've just been unlucky and read examples that don't suit me or something. I adored The Avalon series, after all.

As for Perec if there was a more ludicrous attempt at translation this would be it!


notgettingenough Sitting in towel on bed.

God, Manny. Waylaying a girl like that first thing in the morning. She innocently turns to goodreads, thinking Manny will have voted for her review here

http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

It has insight and pathos, scientific method and Michael Faraday. What does a girl have to do to get a vote? NOT ONE VOTE. That is so not fair.


Bookworm12 notgettingenough:
What is wrong with you? that is just messed up and sick. He is only eleven!
Don't put such sick, rude, inappropriate comment. Why don't you just join an adult content room, and then you can tell them about your sadistic, twisted view of Harry Potter?
You digust me.


message 28: by notgettingenough (last edited Apr 07, 2011 11:08PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough Bookworm12 wrote: "notgettingenough:
What is wrong with you? that is just messed up and sick. He is only eleven! Don't put such sick, rude, inappropriate comment. Why don't you just join an adult content room, and then you can tell them about your sadistic, twisted view of Harry Potter? You digust me."


Good morning, bookworm12. Nothing like waking up to the adulation of my fans. Though I must confess I found Bookworm11 and 10 and 9...well. They were NICER than you are.

So, ummm. You don't didn't like this, then, Bookworm12:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARa2eQ...

Everybody else should watch it. It's hilarious.


Tenoko1 I'm with Bookworm12 on this. It's a Children's Book, it's suppose to teach them basic values like friendship, honesty, bravery. Y'know, how to be a commendable human being. Actually, given your comment, you may not know about that. If you are looking for wank material, check another section on your local bookstore. Like behind the counters.


notgettingenough I used to delete Harry Potter Fan Hate Mail, until Manny explained to me it should be worn as a badge of honour. And it's a democracy, I know, I know. People like Misty and Bookworm12 should be allowed to say that other people aren't allowed to say...

I know.

I know.


message 31: by Doneril (new)

Doneril wow! you sure have a very perverted mind...


Emily This is a childrens book you idiot, yes they are teenage boys but you do understand that ten year olds read Harry Potter.


notgettingenough Emily wrote: "This is a childrens book you idiot, yes they are teenage boys but you do understand that ten year olds read Harry Potter."

Manny, please tell me when I can start deleting these inane comments again.


message 34: by MJ (new)

MJ Nicholls I like this review so I feel exempt from the group. Did you genuinely think Rowling's prose was a festival of stink? I'm not an HP fan but there are stinkier kiddies books out there.


message 35: by MJ (new)

MJ Nicholls And I approve of the wand/penis comparisons. I'm sure Freud was a member of the magic circle. jerk.


message 36: by Jur (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jur Ahw, please don't delete the inane comments NGE! They are a pleasure to read... Pretty please? I voted for your review...?


message 37: by Marc (new)

Marc Kozak Sex in a children's book? Gosh! You sicko! Impressionable young kids are reading this! Graphic scenes of torture, endless violence and murder is ok, but a dick joke! Preposterous!


notgettingenough MJ wrote: "And I approve of the wand/penis comparisons. I'm sure Freud was a member of the magic circle. jerk."

Indeed!

Jur wrote: "Ahw, please don't delete the inane comments NGE! They are a pleasure to read... Pretty please? I voted for your review...?"

Jur, I won't, okay?! But I have a terrible idea that I'm not doing to get any more rude ones.

Marc wrote: "Sex in a children's book? Gosh! You sicko! Impressionable young kids are reading this! Graphic scenes of torture, endless violence and murder is ok, but a dick joke! Preposterous!"

That is so sweet of you, Marc. I've never been called a sicko in a way that is positively endearing.


Manny Look, look, my Harry Potter review has sex in it as well! I've kept all my outraged remarks and everything! It even contains the word "masturbation"!


message 40: by notgettingenough (last edited May 12, 2011 10:33AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough Manny wrote: "Look, look, my Harry Potter review has sex in it as well! I've kept all my outraged remarks and everything! It even contains the word "masturbation"!"

Admit it, you've been jealous of my review right from the beginning, Manny. I'm sorry you haven't got over it yet.


Manny Admit it, you've been jealous of my review right from the beginning, Manny. I'm sorry you haven't got over it yet.

It's only because you've got pictures. You're always plastering pictures all over your reviews to get more votes, and dammit, it works. Maybe I'll have to start doing the same thing.


message 42: by notgettingenough (last edited May 12, 2011 10:52AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

notgettingenough Manny wrote: "
It's only because you've got pictures. You're always plastering pictures all over your reviews to get more votes, and dammit, it works. Maybe I'll have to start doing the same thing."


It's true, I admit, I have a complete picture double standard where it's okay if I do it but mostly I boycott them.

But you have 57 HP votes and I only have 21. The difference between our reviews is the class of hate mail we have received. Yours is full of people trying to be sociologically correct. Mine is just straight to the point. I'm sorry my hate mail is superior to yours and so much more fun now that I've got into the swing of it.


message 43: by Ian (last edited May 13, 2011 12:14PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ian "Marvin" Graye Surely everybody knows that HP is based on a Chinese rites of passage tale where the protagonist makes his way from Wanking to Bonking.
We readers have to be content with Peking.


message 44: by Ian (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ian "Marvin" Graye Necessary, appropriate, vulgar, enough. Omnomnom.


notgettingenough Eden wrote: "Was this review really necessary? I can't believe anyone could post such an inappropriate, vulgar comment. People come on Goodreads to look at others' opinions, not complaints on children's books that there is "not enough sex." If you want sex, go watch a porno. I doubt you even read the book in the first place."

You impugn me, madam. How could somebody have written such a profound review with valuable insights into the subtleties of this book without having read it.

If there is a nasty wizard in this book, I hope he waves his thing at all the people who don't like my review. And just don't get all grumpy about this, I mean his thing, not his Thing.


message 46: by Brad (last edited May 14, 2011 06:52AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Brad How did I miss this disgusting review. You should be ashamed of yourself, notgettingenough;) This is a book about murder, child abuse, teaching violence and making warriors, neglect, torture, sacrifice of children, economic disparity, elitism, racism and peril. No room for sexuality.


message 47: by Ian (last edited May 14, 2011 01:32PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ian "Marvin" Graye One of the funny things about this discussion or the lack of it is how important sexuality actually (and overtly) is to HP, especially later in the series.
It defies me how people expect someone to write about or think about or progress through adolescence without considering sex or sexuality.
For me, HP is a love triangle in which there is enormous sexual tension around who will end up with Hermione by the time they escape the chains of adolescence.
Obviously, JKR for her own reasons avoids the obvious temptation to let Harry end up with Hermione.
However, right up until the last moment, there is some doubt as to whether Ron will get the girl.
It's totally misguided to think that HP's adolescent audience isn't right on top of this issue.
In fact, they're probably way ahead of most adults in the audience (including me).
In one of the Deathly Hallows films, Harry and Hermione dance together, while Ron remains banished in the wild.
This was a tipping point in the story, when Hermione might possibly have reversed her sexual selection.
When I saw the film, a whole group of kids burst out laughing in this scene.
I still don't know whether I missed something (was it Harry's seriousness or clumsiness?), but I was too busy concentrating on the soundtrack and trying to work out its significance.
The song was Nick Cave's "The Ship Song", which was the last thing I expected to hear in a HP film.
It's a great melody, but if you have a look at the lyrics, you have to wonder what was intended by the director, at least.
Did Harry create a "little mystery" with Hermione?
Did Hermione loose her dogs on Harry? Or let her hair hang down?
Did Harry have to remove her wings, so that she could try to fly in her own right?
Did Hermione have to escape Harry's legendary pull, so she could find happiness?
I wish I could have asked those kids.


message 48: by Ian (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ian "Marvin" Graye I just asked my 12 year old daughter why people laughed at that scene, and she said (in this order) "because they weren't together" (i.e., a recognised couple) and "because they were goofy".


Kimberley Books for kids don't have sex in them. Sorry to let you down. Maybe you should just go read some erotica?


message 50: by Brad (new) - rated it 4 stars

Brad Perhaps books for kids should have a little sex in them, though. Not great randy erotica scenes, surely, but an age realistic expression of what is on the mind of many kids.


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