Anh's Reviews > Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
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's review
Jan 25, 13

did not like it
bookshelves: fantasy, hated, young-adult
Read from August 25 to 27, 2012

Years ago, I made a terrible mistake of sampling The Order of Phoenix (HP5).

It was like this: somehow I had never got the chance to read the first four, but of course people had been talking about HP everywhere, and I was naturally very curious and decided to test the water. I reasoned: if it is as good as rumored, the middle of it is also good. Most unfortunately, that was when they had just published the translation of HP5, so the very first fantasy I read is the first chapter of HP5.

Couldn't have chosen anything worse. This whole volume is full of the whining ego of this jerk called Harry Potter. He ceaselessly complains why people don't pay more attention to him at a time when the Super Evil Overlord returns (oh, why indeed!) Just because you're an orphan, people don't have to fawn over you to make up for the years you lost, do they? And just like Hermione diagnosed, he's only too eager to act heroic, always thinks too high of himself. He struck me as dull, pathetic, arrogant, nosy, reckless, and above all, stupid beyond measures. He blunders around, never really cares or thinks what the consequences might be, and that others might have to clean the mess after he's done having tantrums.

(The first time Harry broke into Umbridge's office to contact Sirius has the most ridiculous excuse that's ever been made up. So he risked being expelled and even the location of the Order to tell Sirius that he knew the gang had bullied Snape? That's it? That's the lamest excuse - ever!

And there's another thing: so that was true that his dad was in fact an ass and Snape had every reason to act crazy, and Harry was decidedly mad with Snape still? Hey Rowling, you lost me there. I just couldn't get it. Are we mad at someone when we know they were treated like vermin?)

Of course, that is exactly the point because JKR wanted to create an exemplary teenager. It's just that she overdid it. She created the only obnoxious protagonist among highly agreeable supporting cast I've ever read. Now I know why I shunned fantasy all those years. Quite understandable, to quote Professor Dumbledore. It was all because of this book! Not only did I avoid HP at all costs, I also stayed away from fantasy for a good 5 years…

ETA: at the moment I posted this, I'd already read the first 4 books.
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Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Emilymaingi If you just read the fifth book, and not the first four, you would be lost. You can't start in the middle of a series.. Especially one like this. I do not agree with a word you said, except that Jo made Harry a normal teenager- however, I believe she was absolutely correct. It's really hard to come in the middle of a well known series in general, but especially a dark book like this. I guarantee you, if you read the first 4 novels, you would appreciate it so much more.

message 2: by Anh (new) - rated it 1 star

Anh that's my mistake that I was talking about, Emily. I didn't only start in the middle, I also chose the worst book in a series. and that forever affects my perspective, no matter how objective I try to be.

Harry Potter is overrated, I think. it's certainly ok, but there are a lot of better books with lower ratings.

message 3: by Caleb (new)

Caleb Blake I haven't read the books at all, but I watched all the movies and found that it got worse as it progressed.

Actually I thought Order of the Phoenix was saved by a truly awesome action sequence towards the end that elevated it in my mind. However, the last 3 movies were tiresome to me and I could barely get through Deathly Hallows.

At the end I said that the tremendous advantage of having watched the final movie was that I should never have to feel curious to watch any of them again.

message 4: by Anh (new) - rated it 1 star

Anh that's true, Caleb. the movies are horrible. I purposely avoided them all these years because I wanted to read first, but that's a mistake as well. had I watched them, I'd have been saved the trouble of curiosity.

Joel Christophel Firstly, anyone whose only seen the films has no place here. The movies were terrible.

It doesn't come accross as silly to you to condemn a series as overrated after reading only the 5th installment? The people who have invested the most amount time in this series are simply wrong because you've read 1/7 what they have?

message 6: by Anh (new) - rated it 1 star

Anh Joel wrote: "Firstly, anyone whose only seen the films has no place here. The movies were terrible.

It doesn't come accross as silly to you to condemn a series as overrated after reading only the 5th installme..."

(sigh) Alright. It's my fault, I wasn't clear in my review. I have to repeat that I have given it another go. After the first terrible encounter with the 5th book, I actually did read the whole series from book #1 to #7. To be even clearer, I read it like this: #5 --> 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. And I still didn't like it, to put it mildly.

And I never condemned anything after that first reading of #5. Because I knew I wasn't qualified to do so. The review above was written (and then edited many times since) when I had read the whole thing up to #5.

Joel, please read all of the review before commenting.

Jules For me, the problem is not so much Harry hating Snape although he knows how Snape was treated, but rather Snape STILL hating Harry after he sees that Harry had a terrible childhood and was bullied just as much as he was. I really like the book, btw. Nevertheless, I appreciate your review since it has some good points =)

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