Monday, December 16, 2013

Harry Potters Books 1-5 by J.K. Rowling

I'm re-reading the series and making a few comments/notes as I go.  Here're my "reviews" for Books 1-5

Book 1

Just re-read for the 9th time... After a long hiatus. Wonderful. Was almost like reading again for the first time, though I knew more about everything... Looking forward to reading the rest of the series again!

Book 2

Interestingly, the second book was not as good as the first (on a re-read, years later). The first book introduces the reader and Harry to a whole new world at the same time; the second book has frustrating moments where the characters aren't doing the smart and logical thing (no more details... still won't spoil!).  It wasn't terribly surprising that the first book, written so many years ago, was weak, or even that the first two were weaker than the rest of the series... what was surprising was that the 2nd was so much weaker than the 1st. Fortunately for me then and now, and fortunately for all the other HP readers, the 3rd is right there at your fingertips, so no need to dwell on the weaknesses of the 2nd (despite the fact that I just have in this review).

Don't get me wrong. I love these books. I thoroughly enjoyed re-reading 1 and 2, but I was reminded why this is, to me, the weakest book in the series. Still, a 4 star, but not magically delicious like the rest of 'em

Book 3

Yes. Yes. Still wonderful. Massively better than the last.

Book 4

Yep, still 5 stars. Life got a little busy as I was reading this one, so it took me a little longer.. And consequently, some of the more draggy parts ... Well, dragged. Specifically, the spew (aka house elf liberation front) bit and some of the more.. sentimental bits. But! The book's still good in those parts, and then completely overridden by the excellent climax and end. Just keeps you absolutely glued to the pages, especially once the third tri-wizard task starts!

Though during the slower parts I was starting to think I'd be glad to take another break to read a library book or an early reviewer, now that I've finished book four, I wish I didn't have to take the break! Ah well, only 4 interim books and then right back to it ;)

Book 5


As I've often said, reading the series through the 1st time, Book 5 was my least favorite. I didn't like the teenage angst and the yelling and the whining... but reading it again now (and this was ... perhaps my 3rd time on this book? 4th?), it was quite good.

Yes, there is teenage angst and whining and yelling.. but actually, taking it a little slower and reading what is there and not just trying to tear through the book as fast as humanly possible, I realize that Rowling really did an excellent job of showing 15-year-old proclivities and mentality while also subtly introducing (Spoiler)  Lord Voldemort's own personality. It was subtle and, on this slower, more involved and in-depth read, quite nicely done.

Not only was I able to get past my original dislike for the UNNECESSARY YELLING ;), but the book is MEATY. mmmm, meaty. There's so much in this book. It moves just fast enough and just slow enough to wrap you nicely up inside that cozy little harry potter blanket.

Very much looking forward to reading Book 6 (which I've only read twice!) and 7 (which I've only read once, at lightning speed!) 

And then.... I will watch the entire set of movies, front to back. It's gonna be a good winter...

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