Graham's Reviews > Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
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's review
Nov 30, 2008

it was ok
bookshelves: fantasy, childrens
Read in May, 2006 , read count: 1

I have to admit that I was really, really excited about getting this book, so much that I’d finished it by the Sunday afternoon (it came out and arrived at our house on the Saturday morning). The sixth book is not exactly a masterpiece – are any of the books, really? – yet it offers all the trials and tribulations and more besides as in the previous entries in the series and it proves to be as thoroughly mysterious and engaging as before.

Half-Blood Prince follows the same pattern as Order of the Phoenix in that it remains slow-paced until the last few chapters, when all of a sudden the action bursts into life and there are shocking deaths and twists in the story. Rowling is generally effective with her writing as clear and interesting as ever, and the characters of Harry, Ron and Hermione are given further depth and scope.

One thing I loved was the inclusion of love and romance, as most of the characters have relationships at Hogwarts in this penultimate year. A fair few chapters detail Voldemort’s beginnings and are quite long-winded, although sadly the Dark Lord himself doesn’t make an appearance in this book. The year at Hogwarts is as typical as ever and the wheels are set in motion for the final book.

Once again, my complaint is with the book's length. It's fine for something like LORD OF THE RINGS, which is moving on all the time, but here it just feels long-winded and padded, just like ORDER OF THE PHOENIX. Cut this down to half the length, and it would be a brilliant book along the lines of AZKABAN or GOBLET OF FIRE.
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