A Reader posted a review at 2009-08-17 09:18:22.
"It's like in the great stories...The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger they were, and sometimes you didn't want to know the end, because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end its only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass, a new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you, that meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think…I do understand, I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn't. They kept going, because they were holding onto something....That there's some good in this world, and its worth fighting for!" Okay, obviously I ripped that awesome quote from Sam, in The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers (Extended, but I think its in both versions), but its appropriate here too. The book was excellent, and I couldn't put it down--I lost a night of sleep because I tried! Ms. Rowling has definitely hit her stride with this one, if not long before. I honestly cannot conceive how this could have been any better an ending to the series, except for obvious partisan things like not killing certain people I was fond of. I could wish for a few more specifics in the book's epilogue--such as Harry's eventual occupation, for example--but on the whole it tied up loose ends quite well. I salute Rowling's ability to turn everything we've known about a certain character (who will remain nameless in an attempt to avoid spoilers) for the last 6 books on its head and make us pity or even admire him at the end. I would wish that Rowling would stop making apocryphal statements about the books at book signings, on the whole, although she did clear up that question of how Harry eventually earns a living after school is out. I don't care what Rowling says, Dumbledore is NOT gay! There is nothing in the books to support that! (Okay, done venting....)
Now, to sum up the review of the series on the whole. This is not an easy series to review as one piece, without argument. This is not due to quality (excellent all through, possibly a trifle dry in the endless expanse of book 5) but to subject matter. To put it plainly, Harry grows up as the series progresses--another thing to commend Rowling on is that she does this so smoothly. He is 11 years old when we first meet him, and he is nearing 18 at the close of the series proper. The first three books, and most of the fourth, can safely be placed in the genre of childrens' literature--appropriate in style (we'll discuss subject matter later) for kids maybe as young as ten. If they can get through it, they can read it. At the end of the fourth book, Goblet Of Fire, the series takes a decidedly dark turn. To be honest, that feel had been building for the whole book, but at the end of bk. 4 Voldemort (the villain, the evillest and possibly the most powerful wizard in recent history) is returned to full life (he had been "living" in some undefined state of undeath--something less than living but not yet dead) by a dark and frightening ritual performed in a graveyard. Murder is performed, and Harry's unwitting companion is killed before his eyes. At this point, I would no longer allow my children to read the series until I thought they could handle it--I'll throw out mid-teens as a general age, since I don't have any kids yet.... From here, the series is no longer children's literature and has become just plain (good!) literature, not age-specific but with content requiring some parental guidance, I should think.
Now lets talk again about the controversy over the young Harry Potter. Keep in mind that I respect a parent's right to monitor and control what their kids are exposed to, to a certain age anyway. But that doesn't justify making blanket statements. I feel that the objection to the series just on the principle that they use magic is particularly feeble, personally. This is not a magic based on the New Age summoning of "spirit guides" or demons--this is a magic akin to fairy-tale and legend, Lord of the Rings, Narnia (admittedly with less religious meaning), Cinderella, A Wrinkle In Time, or George Lucas' "the Force." The world of Harry Potter is no less a fantasy realm for claiming to be our own with the addition of magic than is that of King Arthur for claiming to be Medieval Britain, or is Middle Earth or Narnia for that matter. There is no (repeat: NO) truth to the claim that Rowling was involved in Wicca, and in fact she claims to be a Protestant Christian! Maybe not the firmest of Christians--she has claimed to occaisionally have doubt--but I think that there she is just like the best of us. There is no denying the Christian imagery, especially in this last novel in the series. Back to Wicca: from what I can tell, Wicca is a neo-Pagan religion, sometimes refered to by its people as "the old religion." Its an attempt to regain the ways of the ancient pagans, I would imagine the druids and so forth, and thus also sometimes involves a lot of sex and violence. (Maybe not always, I can't claim much experience with the subject, don't sue me!) This bears no resemblance at all to the world of the Harry Potter novels. At most, Harry Potter has roots in legends (Merlin and so forth) that have much-twisted roots in the ancient pagan religions that Wicca tries to emulate. And the shared use of the term "Witch." I'm not sure how they use it, in Harry Potter it just means the female equivalent of a Wizard. The subject of divination and fortune telling does come up, but it is firmly placed in the realm of the ridiculous--even in Harry's world, tarot cards and crystal balls are good for nothing but ammunition in the final battle. I reiterate: Harry Potter is pure fantasy. No hidden agenda!
It must be acknowledged that aside from any spiritual content that could be objected to, the last three or four books are undeniably rather dark. This is to be expected in a tale of good versus evil, of course, but it could be upsetting to some younger people. To start, Harry is disbelieved by most of the establishment and targeted for persecution--this is one of the darkest spots of the series, in my opinion. The sadistic teacher sent by the Ministry of Magic is nearly as evil a figure as Voldemort, truth be told. Once it is revealed that Harry was right, things are still going badly. Voldemort's side is gaining the upper hand, and their philosophy echoes Nazism rather hauntingly. Wizards and Witches who cannot prove "pureblood" status (prove to have close relatives/ancestors who are Wizards or Witches) are being hunted down, imprisoned, and sometimes killed. Muggles (non-magical people--i.e., you and me) are killed for the fun of it. Some people are tortured, others die gruesome deaths. Not a happy matter, but it cannot be denied that this is some of the most influential fiction published in the last ten years. Harry Potter is here to stay, and we must decide what to do with him. For me, I'm with Sam. This is a great story, a story that really matters.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-10-22 03:51:03.
Me gusto mucho este libro, aunque no me gusto la frase del final "todo estaba bien"... quÃ© frase tan aburrida... jajaja como sea, aquÃ estÃ¡ mi crÃtica (bueno, en realidad es un resumen):
Hechos importantes: La orden del fÃ©nix fue por Harry a Privet Drive, tambiÃ©n llevÃ³ a los Dursley a otro sitio, ellos no se podÃan quedar viviendo en Privet Drive por lo que Voldemort estÃ¡ buscando a Harry. El nuevo cuartel general de la Orden del FÃ©nix es La Madriguera. A Harry lo iban a llevar para allÃ¡, pero, para despistar a los mortÃfagos, Hermione, Ron, Fred, George, Fleur y Mundugus, tomaron pociÃ³n multijugos para verse como Harry (ese capÃtulo se llama Los 7 Potters), cada Harry iba para un lugar diferente con un miembro de La Orden, y en ese lugar habÃa un traslador para La Madriguera.
El verdadero Harry iba para la casa de los papÃ¡s de Tonks, iba con Hagrid. Cada destino para cada Potter estaba protegido con muchos encantamientos, pero quiÃ©n sabe como los mortÃfagos descubrieron el plan, y justo cuando Harry y Hagrid estaban llegando a la casa de Tonks, un mortÃfago los atacÃ³, pero justo a tiempo ellos (Harry y Hagrid) entraron en la protecciÃ³n de la casa. Finalmente llegaron a la Madriguera, aunque a Hedwig la mataron. TambiÃ©n hubo otros accidentes como: a Ojo Loco lo mataron, a Fred le quitaron una oreja y Mundugus, asustado, huyÃ³ despuÃ©s de la muerte de Ojo loco.
El cumpleaÃ±os de Harry fue un dÃa antes de la boda de Bill y Fleur, fue en esta celebraciÃ³n que aparecieron los mortÃfagos y Harry, Ron y Hermione huyen..., desde ahÃ, ellos empezaron a buscar los horcruxes...
Me cansÃ©, mi resumen va ser algo largo... jeje
I like this book so much, though I don't like the sentence of the end "all was well"... it was kind of boring that sentence... lol, anyway, here my review (well, actually is a summary):
Important facts: The order of the Phoenix went for Harry to Privet Drive, also took the Dursley to another place, they couldn't stay living at Privet Drive since Voldemort is after Harry. The new headquaters of The Order, is The Burrow, so Harry was going there, but in order to confuse the Death Eaters, Hermione, Ron, Fred, George, Fleur and Mundungus drunk multijuice potion to look like Harry (that chapter was called The 7 Potters), each Harry was going to different places with one member of The Order, and in that place, there was a Translator to The Burrow.
The real Harry was going Tonk's parent's house, he was going with Hagrid. Each destination for each Potter was protected with a lot of enchantments but some how the Deah eaters discovered the plan and just when Harry and Hagrid were arriving to Tonks house, a Death Eater attacked them, but just on time they got into the protection the house had. Finally they arrived to the Burrow, though Hedwig was killed. Also, there were more accidents like these: Mad-Eye was murdered, Fred got and ear cut off, and Mundungus, scared, ran away after Mad-Eye death.
Harry's birthday was the day before Bill and Fleur's wedding, it was on this celebration that Death Eathers appeared and Harry, Ron and Hermione ran away..., since then, they started to go after the horcruxes...
I got tired, my summary is gonna be kind of long, lol
A Reader posted a review at 2010-08-23 07:31:08.
A flawed conclusion to a generally excellent series, Deathly Hallows suffers from poor pacing, excess plot devices, and story arcs that go nowhere.
While the plot takes off quickly, it soon slows, as Rowling spends a good third of the middle portion of the book sidelining our intrepid threesome while the wizarding world falls apart around them. The reason: Harry's indecision about which of Rowling's dueling story arcs to pursue -- Horcruxes or Hallows.
Turns out he makes the right decision -- finally -- as the entire Hallows plotline ultimately leads nowhere, except to a confusing "musical wand master" speech by Harry that trashes everything we ever knew about wand lore in the Potterverse.
The problem with the Deathly Hallows plotline is not simply that it contributes nothing positive, but that it severely morphs the book's pacing. By the time Harry finally makes his decision, Rowling -- despite the book's length -- finds herself with precious little time to wrap up the plot.
The result is that not only is she forced to haphazardly scatter all the remaining horcruxes around Hogwart's just for our heroes' -- and her -- convenience,
There are other problems as well: the Unforgivable Curses have transmogrified into the "What the Heck Hexes", which Harry tosses around with abandon. Snape, who through the first six books held the potential to be by far the most complex and interesting Rowling character, turns out to be little more than a creepy stalker, endlessly pining over a lost schoolboy crush. And the epilogue offers surpisingly few insights or surprises: twenty years after the epic events little seems to have changed in the wizarding world.
All in all, a disappointing ending to an otherwise great series.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-08-19 11:33:34.
HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS BY J. K. ROWLING: Who will die? What will happen to Hogwarts? Is Snape good or bad? Will Voldemort finally die? And is it possible Harry might die? Many people around the world have been waiting two years for the final installment of the Harry Potter series. As I write this, people of all ages are furiously reading; many have already finished. This is it folks, the last one, with no more planned; and the results are in: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, weighing in at 759 pages, concludes the series in spectacular, jaw-dropping, and awe-inspiring fashion, solidly placing the fantasy series up there with Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, and Stephen KingÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s The Dark Tower, possibly as one of the best fantasy series of all time. This seven-book series, which will be published as a complete set (http://www.amazon.com/Harry-Potter-Boxset-Books-1-7/dp/0545044251/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-4120132-1038307?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1185150415&sr=8-1) on September 18 in a beautifully designed trunk-like box with handles and your very own lock, will be one for the ages, to be read by children for many generations to come.
The Death Eaters are slowly but surely taking over, as weÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½ve always known they eventually would, increasing their numbers and employing the army of Dementors, under the control and guidance of Lord Voldemort. Rowling puts her three main characters Ã¢ï¿½ï¿½ Harry, Hermione, and Ron Ã¢ï¿½ï¿½ to the ultimate test here. In the last six books Harry has gotten by with help from friends and teachers, always seemingly getting that necessary and crucial help at the last second; but now the trio are seventeen, no longer considered underage, and able to perform magic wherever and however they so please. Rowling doesnÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½t hold back, leaving them to fend for themselves, solve their own problems, and get out of each and every situation on their own. Deathly Hallows is nonstop action, one scene of fighting and almost death leading onto the next, as the three seek out the Horcruxes. Going on the vague and barely informative words of wisdom from the late Albus Dumbledore, they piece it together, using their magical and educational knowledge Ã¢ï¿½ï¿½ not just HermioneÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s! Ã¢ï¿½ï¿½ with the goal of finally defeating Voldemort once and for all. And while Harry has expressed in the past that itÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s up to him, heÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s the Chosen One, and needs to go it alone, he isnÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½t given the opportunity here.
People are dying, mainly muggles, but also Mudbloods, and any whose bloodline is tainted with that of the non-magical, leading to a growing world that harkens back to the time of the Third Reich in Nazi Germany, as well as echoing the doom and hopelessness of 1984. With VoldemortÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s rule seemingly solid and complete, Harry gets help he doesnÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½t want from the Order of the Phoenix and DumbledoreÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s Army, leading up to a great final battle where the castle known as Hogwarts lives up to its name as a defensible fortress.
This is the last book folks: who will live and who will die, who will triumph and who will fall is at the mercy of the turning page and the next sentence. But with the size of this book, you can be sure youÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½ll be on the ride of your life from the first page until the last. And you will feel a sadness and longing at the realization that the long journey in the life of Harry Potter is finally over. Yet Rowling has done such an incredible job with Deathly Hallows, weaving in details and points from all previous six books, that you are left with a strong sense of nostalgia. And whatÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½s the only cure for this feeling? Why to begin the books all over again with the first when Harry Potter first looked upon Number Four, Privet Drive.
Sarah posted a review at 2009-07-08 05:53:05.
I am proud to say that I have been a Harry fan from the beginning. From his first trip to the zoo with the Dursleys when a boa constrictor winked at him to when he won the Quidditch Cup for Gryffindor to his first kiss with Ginny Weasley. And I've been there through his less happy moments: everyone accusing him of being Slytherin's heir, the miserable summers at the Dursleys, Cedric Diggory's death, Sirius's death, Dumbledore's death-- his journey has been a thrilling and spellbinding ride, but now, it must come to an end.
The heart of Book 7 is a hero's mission--not just in Harry's quest for the Horcruxes, but in his journey from boy to man--and Harry faces more danger than that found in all six books combined, from the direct threat of the Death Eaters and you-know-who, to the subtle perils of losing faith in himself. Attentive readers would do well to remember Dumbledore's warning about making the choice between "what is right and what is easy," and know that Rowling applies the same difficult principle to the conclusion of her series. While fans will find the answers to hotly speculated questions about Dumbledore, Snape, and you-know-who, it is a testament to Rowling's skill as a storyteller that even the most astute and careful reader will be taken by surprise. And now, I hope you have completed the book, otherwise, I'd stop here:
Severus Snape: THANK YOU, J.K. Rowling, for doing Severus Snape justice. He deserves to be remembered as a hero. A little piece of me died with him.
Fred Weasley: May you rest in peace, and if you can't do that, I'm sure heaven could use a few Joke Shops =D
Hedwig: You were a BEAUTIFUL owl, I tell you. BEAUTIFUL. When I get a pet owl (which will be very soon), I want it to look just like you.
Dobby: I WILL MAKE YOU ANY KIND OF SOCKS YOU WANT.
Lupin and Tonks: Lupin, I thought you were the most badass werewolf ever. And Tonks, I would have never ever called you Nymphadora. And guys, don't worry, your son is in good hands. Last I heard, he was getting it on with Victoire ;).
So goodbye, everyone. And thank you, thank you, thank you, J.K. Rowling for this stunning grand finale to the epic story of Harry Potter.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-08-21 06:30:23.
I must say that Harry Potter has not only been a great serie but a magnificent experiance. All of the books were greatly capticating and fun to read. This is one of those books that you would tell your kids about and your grand children. A true work of art all the way and I think, though as many have said that the ending of the last book was a bit rushed and that a major death would have probably been the best way to end the serie (and I completly agree), it would indeed upset a great many fans who just can't imagine life without Harry Potter.
I think these books were such an attractive and fun read to all age groups was the fact that in some way we might have been envious of Harry. I for one get a feeling every time I read a Harry Potter book of great envy and regret. I am enviuos that Harry got to live in such a magnificent and magical world and thought how great life would be if I had magical powers. I felt regret that after reading these books my life felt shallower and emptier since I had nothing nearly as interesting and as fun in my life as Harry did. Sometimes I like to imagine I was in some better world where there was such adventure and excitment yet danger and passion as there is in the magical world of Harry Potter. (this willingness to escape the real world got me involved in gaming a lot and so i stopped that before i was too addicted to it :P).
All in all I think every single one of us will remember these books and marvel at J.K Rowling wondering how she had such an imagination to create this perfect world that many of us would prefer to have grown up in.
Concerning the movie:
I honestly wasn't too fond of the 5th movie of Harry Potter as I thought that many important details were left out and that the movie could have been made a good 1-2 hours longer (if not more) to include these vital details and make the movie as interesting as the book is. For this reason alone i dread the day that the 7th book would be made into a movie for I would hate to see such a great book be shortened into a 2-3 hour movie and ruined by lack of suspence and detail. (Books>Films and that's a fact :D)
Concerning the ending:
I believe, like many of you, that the ending of the serial could have been far better by making the book longer or by reducing the amount of chapters dedicated to the protagonist's travels and instead use them to make the ending more climactic. I also felt that the final battle between Harry and Voldemorte could have been made more exciting, although I did like the fact that each of the wizards used their prefered spell in the final battle which boosted the image of their character. I loved the fact that Rowling hinted that Harry must die for it to end and I think that his selfless sacrifice was a great part to the book but as most people said I believe that the book would have been more dramatic and unforgetful if Harry Potter did indead die rather then go into some place and have a cosy chat with Dumbledore :P. As he did not I think the ending was O.K. not greatly to my liking but I find it nice how (and if you haven't read the book don't read the next part coz it'll ruin the epilogue) Harry names his children in honour of his parents and Dumbledore and Snape who really were some of the finest wizards in the book. Ofcoarse everyone expected it to end in this way which is why some people were disappointed by it but as I always say it's the author's choice on how to end his/her story... When your writing your own, don't end it like that :)
Greatly recommended to every age group as one of the finest peices of modern literature and a fun read to remember for eternity :) Good job Rowling!!!
A Reader posted a review at 2009-03-30 07:46:35.
Woa, once again, I found myself blown away by J.K. Rowling's work. I am a dreamer, hoping to be an author myself someday, and let me tell you. I have read a lot of books in my life, both classics, some teen novels, a few graphic novels, and lots of fantasy. I honestly think that J.K. Rowling is probably the best author I've ever read or at least pretty darn close. I am amazed again and again, every time I read her books. Her descriptions are very detailed, the imagery is strong, the dialogue is great, and I LOVE her writing style. I was sad to read the last book. As soon as I finished the last page, I thought to myself, "It's over..." But fortunate enough for me, I am one of those readers who loves to re-read her books because I tend to forget or I may be reading a favorite of mine. I will definitely be re-reading these books in the near future.
As for the book itself. I thought this book moved a bit faster than a few of the ones previously. Also,I was amazed how everything came together in the end. The ending blew me away, but that is not regarding the last chapter. I thought she could have left off the last chapter to produce a more stronger, captivating effect upon the reader. But of course, it is nice to know what happens to the characters in the end.
Oh my god,
I just finished that book and I cried. I cried at the part when Harry was giving himself up. I couldn't believe it was the end. I was so upset. I was thinking in my head "It's not fair, it can't end like this, it's not fair." I started crying, and then everything came together perfectly. I kinda wish she would have cut off the last chapter because it seemed to close perfectly right after Harry killed him, but yet at the same time it was nice to see what happened to the characters and to have some comic relief.
This book was wonderful. I absolutely loved it, I'm so sad that its all over though. I mean I grew up with these books, I always thought I was the same age as Harry. Apparently according to the book I'm not, but I still when he was eleven in the first book, that's how old I was, so in a way we were the same age. I'm so sad it's all over, but I don't think I have hardly ever read a book with such a perfect ending. Rowling is a genius, I don't know how she collaborates all her ideas so concisely! I am amazed with her writing. Everything pieced together so well, just like a puzzle. I can guarantee I will be re-reading this book again someday.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-10-03 11:09:17.
Will Harry die in the end? Is Dumbledore really dead? How many more will perish?
These were some of the questions that swam in my head after I'd finished book 6 (which was only a month ago *sheepish) and when I'd got my hands on book 7 mid of last week, not a moment was wasted. Any free time slots I could squeezed out from my schedule - lunch hours at the office, book-dinners replaced tv-dinners..you get the drift - were spent engrossed in the pages.
*****minor spoilers ahead*****
If you think book 6 was dark, book 7 is darker still. The first chapter itself speaks of the death of a great auror, and subsequent chapters are no different. It's as though pain, sufferings and deaths have become a daily thing in the magical world of Harry Potter. Only comfort this time around is there's something readers can cling on to - a glimmer of hope that Voldermort can finally be stopped through the Horcruxes - and with that we accompany Harry, Ron, and Hermione on their quest to stop He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (his name became a taboo halfway through the book).
We are with them throughout their tears, their fears, their anger, their arguments, their losses, their gains and discoveries, their joy and jubilations. It feels like we are growing and maturing with them every step of the way. Together we learnt about Dumbledore's lifestory (his moments of weakness, his regrets, and how he became who he was), but most touching of all, Snape's story is revealed. He is definitely one book that should not be judged by its covers..behind the oily hair and cold demeanor is a person whose loyalty to love must be applauded. Imagine all the risks he had to go through, all the hatred he had to take in..
All in all, a great read with well-written plot. Rarely were there dull moments as it was action-driven right from the start climaxing in the final battle, explosions and all. Like a jigsaw puzzle, all things are put into perspective with the final piece put in place 19 years later ;)
Guess the only thing to look forward to now is the movies. For the greater good *winks, hopefully their storylines will not be cramped and rushed as though in fast forwarded mode. That's the one thing I felt when watching Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix but well...that'll be in another review =P
A Reader posted a review at 2007-08-23 06:50:23.
WOW, That's how I can describe it. One of the best books I've ever read. But why'd she have to kill off almost all of my fave characters. I'm definately gonna miss the series.
Dudley amazed me, he does have some of a heart, I'm glad there okay now, but what happened to them after they went into hiding, it doesn't say.
Kreacher is actually ok, I wanted to hate him and then he was really good to Harry after he gave himn the locket. Yay
Hedwig and Dobby.....COME ON........God, I HATE Bellatrix, so glad she's dead....Neville's parents, Sirius, Dobby, who knows how many others...... so glad Mrs. Weasley got her in the end. I love Mrs.Weasley.
OMG.... Neville....WOW, I knew her had it in him, he was destined for greatness, as was Harry, but due to choice on Voldemort's part, Harry got the fame. I LOVE NEVILLE.
So glad Kingsley got Minister of Magic, he totally deserved it.
Love that Tonks and Lupin finally go married, yay, and Teddy, AWWW, but WHY DID THEY HAVE TO DIE.......GOD..... I LOVED THEM....In my Top 10 favorite Characters....WHY leave another child an orphan?, but so glad the Hermione and Ron took care of him and that Harry stayed in contact with him, they got the relationship him and Sirius didn't. The last of the maurader's dead but they are all together again.
The whole Horcrux/Deathly Hallows thing...AMAZING. And Harry's a descendant awesome.
The Resurrection Stone allowed his dead loved ones to be with hima last time before his, kinda, death.
POTTERWATCH....LOVED IT.....Wow great idea...I love Lee.
RON< Stupid guy left, but returned.... for a little while i hated him so much for deserting Harry and Hermoine but than he returned and I adored him again. And him and Hermione...YAY...FINALLY....It was bound to happen though they had that chemistry, kinda like an old married couple... WOW
Harry and Ron - Aurors, well of course how could they not be, they defeated Voldemort of course with help but still.
and SNAPE.....YES!!!!!......So glad he was good, see Dumbledore's not as dumb as he sounded in the beginning for trusting him with so much, but deep down I knew that he was good all along. AND..He was in love with Harry's mother, AWWW, Once i read that I loved him when before i hated him for killing Dumbledore, deep down he tried to protect Harry from Voldemort, becauseof the love for Lily.
Percy....FINALLY, Stupid guy, but he came back to fulfill his duty to his family.
AND FRED....OMG...I hated that part why kill off Fred :'( He is probably one of the ones that i despised that she killed. AARRRGGhhhh
and what ever happened to Luna Lovegood, it never says what happened with here in the future.
But, it was such a good book,I loved it
A Reader posted a review at 2007-07-23 12:02:57.
(*WARNING: HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS SPOILERS AHEAD*)
This is going to be a very tough book to define. I say define because I don't really think you can review something that is basically the marker post for the end of a rather lengthy phenomenon for a whole bunch of people.
It took me about 12-13 hours in total to read this book. I had been looking forward to it with both anticipation and also some dread, not only because this book is the last, but also, it was fairly easy to predict where certain things could go once you had a sense of where things were going.
So here are my impressions of the book, such as they are:
On the whole, I quite liked the book, and yet it suffers from the sorts of things that Michiko Kakutani from the New York Times mentioned in her pre-emptive review released last week, namely, the side-tours, the extra trips and the particularly lengthy exposition.
And in a way, that has been what we've been primed to expect ever since book #4, the first particularly lengthy expansion of a fairly set formulaic universe.
Don't get me wrong, I love Goblet of Fire - it certainly does a lot of things to expand the universe, and also serves to underscore some points.
Things I liked: The search for the first Horcrux, and the solve of RAB. Even though a large number of people correctly guessed the identity as being Sirius' brother Regulus, the switch in a number of spots I found a bit surprising. Kreacher becomes Dobby's spiritual replacement a lot more quickly than even I expected.
I found Hermione's situation and treatment of her parents a little shocking.
I mean, she's basically changed their lives, wiped their memories to be clear of Voldemort when we know that Voldemort will likely only pursue certain courses of action. Couldn't Harry have made that a bit plainer to her at the end of book #6?
And how does she plan to just "fix" that one after the Voldemort showdown is complete? What if she had died? How would she have corrected that? Seems a bit bizarre to me, but anyway.
I liked the scenes with Remus and Tonks. They have become my new favorite characters, if only because what goes on with them seems to be a lot more considered, more real, less contrived than with other characters.
I also liked seeing more of Luna and her father, and I thought the plot of the Deathly Hallows made a nice comparison to the Horcrux problem.
Death figures prominently in this book. It seems like we get barely 25 pages in before Hedwig is iced. And while I understood why that one had to happen, we see a lot more people than "just 2" get bumped off. Some have commented that this book makes a Sopranos episode or First Blood look tame by comparison, and it's a point to consider, no matter how realistic she is aiming to be.
I had really wished that JKR had simply said "people die in this book", rather than putting a number on it. Most people tend to take her literally, at her word, and to do so just to maintain a sense of false surprise seems a bit out of place, as I was figuring, "did she mean two major characters? two major one minor?" throughout the first half.
Once the major battle started shaping up near the end of the book I pretty much abandoned any idea that this story would contain a modest death count and started to get out the clicker: 5...6...7...8...
Rowling is bound and determined to re-take us through Book #1, with stops at Diagon Alley, Gringott's, Tom's bar, and Hogwarts itself. Obviously, the Gringott's scene is the scene on the front of the Children's cover.
I give JKR points for variety, but there are a few places where things are literally just dropped into Harry, Ron and Hermione's hands a bit too easily, case in point, the sword found in the forest.
There is significant space given to Dumbledore's back story here. This weekend, a local Ottawa newspaper reporter who admitted he wasn't a fan of the series was given the rather unfortunate position of reviewing the book from the point of view from someone who didn't get it.
While I found that rather manipulative and a bit out of taste, he did make one interesting point, and that was why so much space given to Dumbledore when he was already dead?
And boy, doesn't Aberforth just turn up at just the right place at the right time? Wouldn't Tom Riddle have known about that, too?
Indeed, why put so much stock into ensuring that Snape take control of Hogwarts? I mean, sure, I can buy the premise that people were threatened into taking their kids there, but it's not like everyone would do that in a real situation.
I also have a hard time buying that McGonagall and co. would allow such a situation to occur given that he killed Dumbledore, despite the death threats to students. Remember, the teachers were NOT party to the Headmaster's thoughts at the time.
Couldn't Dumbledore have let McGonagall and a few other people in on that?
Well, I suppose that could have happened that way, but that might have caused some problems for the plot which relies on those marker points, though...
I was a bit surprised that Rowling didn't finish off one of either Ron, Hermione, or Hagrid.
After all, it's these 3 people that pretty much define Harry's life after Dumbledore, and I figured if one of these didn't go, then I was guessing that maybe she'd probably have to put Harry through something first before he could learn some point of the whole story.
Predictably, the "near-death-experience" allowed for that, and also neatly sewed things up pretty pat in terms of why Dumbledore didn't give out too many details in terms of what Harry had to do,
plus, side-bonus! He also makes sure that everything just works out a-OK.
Good thing Harry's got some pretty good problem solving skills to boot, otherwise, where would we be? While this is joked about in the book itself, it does make one wonder.
In the book, there is no focus whatsoever on using non-verbal spells, despite our charges getting some training in it the year prior.
Could this not have been worked into the plot somehow, maybe just in ONE or TWO sentences somewhere? After all, Snape DID make quite a point of this at the end of Book #6. Why wasn't this good advice?
In fact, there are rather a lot of last minute endings here:
The sword is granted to Harry, and later Neville, at the last minute.
Neville kills Nagini at the last minute.
Ron takes off, and later returns, at the last minute.
Harry breaks in, and out, of Gringotts, at the last minute.
Percy changes his mind at the last minute.
At the last minute, Snape admits that he cares for Harry through his love for Lily.
At the last minute, Fred is killed unexpectedly.
Hermione and Ron get into a super-snog at the last minute.
Kreacher turns into Dobby at the last minute, which I liked. I almost cried at that one.
Molly Weasley saves the day at the last minute.
Harry steps in, twice, at the last minute to save both the school and to deal with an insult against McGonagall.
Now don't get me wrong, I loved the book. I liked the fact that there were many threads and that as before, we had to puzzle out some things, even though it was quite easy to see where things would likely all fall out.
And I loved seeing Harry again, even though he had WAY too much on his plate.
However, once the Gringotts chapter was done I knew it was pretty much going to turn out all right for the principal characters, and that kind of robbed the rest of the book a little of some suspense.
One point keeps nagging me though: If everything works out fine, and Voldemort is gone, then what happens for the future? Isn't magic and all of the wonder attached to it going to seem rather mundane now that all significant quests, enemies and other things are solved?
It's kind of like Indiana Jones and the Holy Grail - what, really, do you do for an encore, even though one has already been written in?
A Reader posted a review at 2010-08-29 07:22:19.
I've read it a few times by now and I really have to say that this book is a stellar ending to what is probably my favorite fantasy series. Rowling has grown so much as a writer over the years and she has given us so many wonderful characters. Harry's seven year quest comes to a heart pounding conclusion as he and his two great friends race against time to destroy Voldemort's horcruxes before Voldemort can cement his absolute rule over the wizarding world and ours. Along the way old friends show up lend a helping hand, a few favorite characters bite the dust and one beloved father figure turns out to be more complex than we ever dreamed, but the real focus is clearly on the heroes Harry, Ron and Hermione. Their journey is just as harrowing for us as it is for them. When you turn the final page of the book you are left with mixed feelings. Certainly the epilogue is hardly as detailed as you would like but that leaves the door open for us to continue to imagine these characters and this world existing, a parallel universe that plays to our wildest fantasies. On further reflection over the book and having the chance to reread it at your leisure rather than rushing through it in eight hours right after buying it you realize how richly textured and finely tuned the book really is. The message is beautiful and the characters are so rich and bear much further thought and scrutiny, as all great literary characters should. Harry Potter captured the imagination of the world for a reason. His is a remarkable story, a conglomerate of all sorts of human fantasies that we have enjoyed for thousands of years. The titular character just may be the coolest boy wizard who ever lived. In his bildungsroman we not only see ourselves but we can fully lose ourselves in childhood fantasy mixed with very real adult horror. With this final volume and excellent conclusion Mrs. Rowling lifts Harry up on the boards with those other great imaginary heroes such as Frodo, Alice, Peter Pan. The writing may be more workmanlike than anything else but the story and detail is excellent.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-07-27 02:56:05.
**THERE AREN'T ANY SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW**
I must say that when I first placed a reservation for a copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows at Barnes and Nobles six months before it was released, I was quiite worried about how J.K. Rowling would tie up her generation-defining series of books. I was afraid that, in her quest to make writing sequels impossible when the series was no longer under copywright, she would ruin the series and put more effort into that task than making it a completing and satisfying final installment of the septology. After reading the book and re-reading key parts, I am compelled to say that, not only did she tie the series up well, this is easily one of the best books of the seven.
Before I delve into singing the praises of this book, I feel I must get the negative stuff out of the way first. As I have been saying since the release of about the foruth book, J.K. Rowlings writing and creativity have both increased exponentially. Her grammer has become ten times as sophistocated and her vocabulary has broadened widely. However, in this book it seems to me a bit streached in some places. There are a few occasions in which she used the terminoligy of 'latter' vs. 'former'. She used it three times in the book, and while it may have added in some situations, it did not in these. I have always viewed 'latter' and 'former' as words you would use in a college essay or some form of research or debate paper, not in a novel. I feel it detracts from the passion and emotion of the novel and makes it feel more mechanical and formulaic. The second bit that I would have prefered to see is a more simple use of commas. The great thing about the Harry Potter books is they are so easy to read, almost like watching a movie, and throwing nasty, comma-rule bending sentances in the mix seems to detract from the plot. Even in the first chapter I was encountering sentances that you had to re-read multiple times and mentally break down in order to understand them to the fullest meaning possible. I felt that re-arranging the one sentance with six commas into three sepearate sentances with one or two commas would have made the sentance more digestible in the context. The last of the blunders, in my opinion, is that she tried to create new cliches. In other words, she tried to re-create the phrase 'The greatest thing since sliced bread'. She came up with some similes that I felt were stressed and forced. I felt sentances like these detracted from the book. In short: The only thing that this book lacks (or rather, has but doesn't need) is the fact that in her quest to become a more sophisticated writer, she has added some things that the book simply would have been better without.
Now, before you take everything I've said thusfar to formulate your opinion and then return your copy before reading it, keep reading. The positives far outweigh the negatives in this book.
The main thing I liked about this book is the sense of change it brings you. In the other six books the plots are very forluated and predictable. They always start off with an exciting beginning that you don't understand now but will later. They then move into Harry sleeping in his bedroom and an explanation of what has been happening since school got out at the end of the previous book, most of it is explained by the Daily Prophet and other letters and pamphlets Harry has recieved by owl. After this, there is a small amount of usless, boring text when all of a sudden BAM! J.K. Rowling hits you in the face with something exciting. After the exciting thing happens, Harry and his friends are re-united for something happy and exciting in these (apparently) dark times. There are then two or three chapters preparing for this happy and exciting thing, then something terrible happens, but it is easily fixed. After this, the kids go to school, get into the gist of things, then something bad happens around Halloween. Then the book slows down until Christmas time, where something good and exciting happens. This is the first lead they've had on this mystery since the beginning of the book. Then there is a period of discovering things between Christmas and about April, then around April or May there is a part of the book that is calm and peaceful, fairly un-eventful, "The deep breath before the plunge" as Gandalf said in The Lord of the Rings. Then there is a huge swell of action, a breif and overly-exciting moment, then a quick resolution. Fortunately for readers, this book breaks that trend after the punch in the face in the beginning, which is possibly the biggest perk in the book.
I will admit, I thought the first half of the book was a little slow. There were small little hints, clues, and leads scattered throughout, but most of them were nipped at the bud. I felt that, with all the information she (Rowling) was planning to cram into the book, could have spent more time on it in the first half. As it was, the first half basically was Ron, Harry, and Hermione chilling and learning to cope with each other. There was little substance and I felt it dragged a little. It wasn't until after I hit about half-way that I realized how fast the book was flying by. Once you get to this point, you realize that there were plenty of small little details in the first half that brought the entire end of the series together. After that, you start to get to points where you are saying to yourself 'Oh yes, of course that happened. Why didn't I see that?' Eventually they all build up together and erupt into a huge burst of excitment. This breaks the standard 'Harry Potter' trend because the entire 'rising action' (as we have learned to call it since the second grade) starts about halfway through the book. You keep expecting the end to come, as the entire second half is repeating excitement and climax points. You keep expecting each part to be the final battle, the last breath of the series, but it just keeps going. That is probably my favorite thing in this book, the action just keeps continuing. The anticipation for the end makes this book that much better. It also makes the book seem longer, when it is in fact one of the shorter of the final four. In other words, the repetition of excitment and the continuous action in the second half of this book makes it soar beyond many of the others.
The other part of this book I enjoyed immensely was her tie-ins to previous books in the series. After finishing the book, I went back and skimmed/sped-read through The Chamber of Secrets. After knowing the outcome and the effect of a lot of the occurances in Chamber of Secrets later in the series, it is pretty apparent that she spent a lot of time planning out these books. The ties are so obvious and after knowing the end, so predictable. I read through the last few chapters of 'Chamber' a couple of times, and every time I was slapping myself in the forehead saying 'Of course, why didn't I see that when I first read this book.' They're the ties that make me love all book series like this one.
One thing I would like to address is the epilogue of this book. Many people are complaining about it, saying it didn't provide enough information on what happened after the book. I have to say that I do not agree. The point of the epilogue was to give you a basic idea of where everyone was years after the series, but it gave the reader liberties on how they got there. I like knowing that she left part of the book up to my own imagination instead of telling me 'this and this and this happened.' It gives you some final liberties in the series.
All things considered, I have to say that this book was thoroughly satisfying. It brought ties to the end of the series that has defined my generation. The first book hit shelves in September 1998, when I was first beginning the third grade. Now that I am entering my final year of highschool with the last of the books in my hand, I feel that the symbolism is complete. I was prepared for the worst when the book was announced, thinking that this may be a terrible end to a metaphor of my childhood, but after reading it I am putting this book down with nothing but smiles.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-08-02 02:15:28.
When I first started on my journey into Harry Potter's life, I had absolutely no idea it would lead me here. I used to hate the series with such force, and for no other reason except that I didn't like it. It was like a disgusting slug that I couldn't stand to be near. I had received Chamber of Secrets for one of my birthdays (the owner had a spare), and when I tried to read it, it just didn't make sense. I knew I had to start from the beginning if I was to enjoy it, but didn't have a driving force to make me read it.
Even when I received books one and three as a present, I still had no desire to read it. I was an avid reader then, too, and would always have at least 4 books out from the library. Then the day came when I finished my books, and had nothing to read. My parents didn't want to take me to the library because we were leaving on vacation in a few days, and they didn't want to deal with this issue at the moment.
I was forced (and I use this word lightly) by the Gods up above, to read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. It took me a week and a half to go through the first 3 chapters, something which has never happened to me before. I kept on reading over parts because I got bored and wasn't paying attention. It just wasn't interesting. then I got to the Keeper of the Keys (and the ending to The Letters from No One), and finished the book within 7 hours. I was completely hooked.
I swallowed Chamber and Prisoner in a few days, and was so disappointed to hear that this was it. Prisoner of Azkaban has only just been released, and I was shocked to hear that there wasn't going to be another one for a long time. To pass the time I reread the series, and continued on, reading other books. On the Saturday that Goblet of Fire came out, I was completely oblivious (a mistake I never made again), but luckily, a friend of mine bought it and finished it the night it came out, and gave it to me as a present. (This was around the time I found out how the real pronunciation of Hermione really went, too.)
I read it in two and a half days, and was shocked, amazed, happy, sad, and wanting more. Some of my favorite chapters come from the last few of Goblet. It blew me away. I just couldn't believe it. Crouch?! Voldemort back?! Cedric dead?!? I was left with so many questions that drove me insane over the next three years (in which I spent a considerable amount of time reading the series again).
By the time the cover for Order of the Phoenix was out, I was squealing like a little girl and positively exploding from anticipation. Again, Rowling never ceased to amaze me. Phoenix (the least favorite of mine from the seven), was amazing, and I wasted no time finishing it. I got it Saturday, and was going to finish it on Sunday... when I found out that 60 pages had been copied over from previous chapters instead of the real deal, so I had to wait until Monday to get a new book. It drove me insane, but when I got a new copy, there was nothing that was going to stop me (except my mother's continued complaints that I take a shower first, which I fought against vehemently - though she won out and I had to stop for a few minutes at The Department of Mysteries (chapter 34, IIRC).
This was the first book to make me cry out of the series so far (although when I got older I always shed a few tears for Cedric), and Sirius' death was a serious (no pun intended) blow to the face. I couldn't believe JK Rowling had done this to me, and more importantly, to Harry. I remember saying to everyone how I wanted to bitch-slap across the face for doing it (although I stopped after a while). And to this day, Umbridge remains (along with Bellatrix) as the two characters I most hated in any book I have ever read.
Two long, long years of speculation and anguish passed, in which I had time to reread the series once more (and maybe a few more times than that), and wonder what awaited Harry. I was on GameFAQS during that time, and when the book leaked, some user on the site showed everyone the spoilers (with a warning, of course, he wasn't a complete arse), although no one believed him (or her). I laughed at the fact that Snape, Snape, could kill Dumbledore. But when I got my book, I immediately turned to page 596 to see if it was true - and it was.
Still, I enjoyed reading the book, and even as I was reaching towards the end of Dumbledore's life, I was hoping that maybe I was wrong, rooting Dumbledore on to get out of the predicament somehow - he was Dumbledore, after all. But alas, Albus could not save himself, and was killed by Severus Snape, who I hated more than I hated the series before I started it. The hatred didn't last long, though, as I found inconclusive proof that Snape was good. It all started to make sense.
This became my favorite of the books, not because of what happened, but because of how many new ideas were introduced to my - Harry's - world. Horcruxes, Felix, Slughorn, Unbreakable Vows, Apparition lessons, Spinner's End. It was all amazing and magnificent. Spinner's End is one of my favorite chapters, too, it was just such a genius way to start the book (well, almost start).
Then began the wait. What I had been dreading since finishing Half-Blood Prince. I knew Harry's adventures would have to come to an end someday, but I wasn't ready for it. Two years didn't seem long enough. And I knew no matter how long the book was, there was no way I'd be able to handle it, to be able to finish the series once and for all, to know how it all ends. It had been such a huge and magnificent part of my life for so long that I couldn't bear to part with it. As the time got closer and closer, I became more tense, more afraid, but at the same time I felt like I had been waiting for this moment since I first opened Sorcerer's Stone.
I was anxious, excited, afraid, paralyzed with fear of who would die and what would happen. And then it came. The Deathly Hallows.
When I finally got the book, my hands were shaking. Throughout the book I laughed, I cried, I laughed some more, and mostly I was amazed. I guessed most of the things that were about to happen as they were just about to happen, and a few parts were just so plain obvious. Kreacher and Regulus for one, I saw that coming all the way from America. Snape too, although to a lesser degree.
Mad-Eye's death shook me up, and I believe I was tearing for a few minutes and had to stop. Hedwig's death was a bit blunt, and although it was sad, it didn't feel so strong. The Seven Potters has to be one of my favorite scenes, though, and I can't wait to see it on-screen. When George was dragged in to the garden, I was panicking like I had never had before, I was so scared he was dead.
I was surprised and amazed at every page, although it did drag out a bit until The Silver Doe, which happens to be one of my favorite chapters. Every page felt so right. When Dobby appeared on the scene, I knew he was already dead. Still, it did nothing to ease my tears. I gasped so many times in this book, it just kept on surprising me. Umbridge with the locket, Hermione finally kissing Ron, George, Fred, the final Horcrux, Neville with the sword, good guys using Unforgivable Curses (McG especially, she was just badass), Harry's wand breaking, Grindelwald, you get the point.
Percy surprised me completely, and I choked up when he came to the rescue. The worst blow was Fred, though. I cried for a long time, and couldn't read the rest until I stopped. It was just so sad. I had always expected it to be Percy, as a final redemption act. Tonks and Lupin hit me pretty hard, too.
I think I am one of the few who liked the Epilogue, I felt it gave the right amount of closure. A bit short, though, and I would have liked to know more about everyone else. Still. This is my favorite book by far. I hope the Encyclopedia will answer all the questions that are still hanging in the air, like the veil and the DoM, and everything else.
It was a good, long run, and I thank you, Joanne Kathleen Rowling. I thank you for eight years of memories, of fun, of laughter and tears, of excitement and mystery, of intrigue and obsession and speculation. I thank you for giving me a story that captured my heart and captivated my mind. I thank you for this wonderful experience you have shared with me and countless others. I thank you for making Harry a part of my life.
A Reader posted a review at 2009-03-12 10:41:58.
After 25 hours (not straight through) I was able to complete, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. All in all a great book. If you are a fan of the series then let me say that the book will not let you down. I could go on and on about the wonders of it, but since my time at this computer is some what limited, allow me to point out the few things that I did not like...
Stop here if you wish not to view any
1. Why doesn't anyone tell me anything?
Like most of the previous novels, Harry is on the outside of the loop when it comes to information. Therefore, he spends the better part of the novel complaining that no one ever tells him anything. Sounds familiar? It should, Rowling has done the same thing in the past. Sure, it is for his own protection. I realize this, the problem is that the character refuses to see it that way too.
2. Into the woods.
The early part of the novel also spends a great amount of time with Harry and company on the run. This seems to go on and on to the point that you seem to wonder: "Hey JK when are you going to get to the good stuff?" (When she does - WOW!!) I feel that a chapter on Ron and Hermione destroying the Hufflepufff cup would have made a much better chapter instead of more camping in the woods.
3. Neville's revenge.
Yes, he did confront (in the 5th novel) the witch, Bellatrix Lestrange, who destroyed his parents. Surely, Rowling would allow Neville his pound of flesh. I waited for the payoff. It never came. Yes, Neville did prove to be a hero. We fans knew that all along. What we wanted for him was what we also wanted for Harry; to avenge his parents by directly taking on the person who was responsible. Harry got his Voldemort moment. Yet, Bellatrix was taken out by someone other than Neville; too bad.
4. Something missing...
While I enjoyed the "19 years later ending", a nice touch to Harry running into old classmates with their kids; sending them off to school, would have been running into Dudley as well. Him (Dudley) there with his wizard child, maybe Uncle Vernon there as well seeing his grandchild off. Finally, you would have Harry getting acceptance from this part of his family. Just a thought...
Again, a good novel. One I enjoyed. These are just a few areas of concern. Thanks...
Emily posted a review at 2007-09-02 04:51:20.
I tried to be critical. I really did want to be one of those people that could tear this book apart. I love Harry Potter, but I'm also something of a literary snob. After all, this was the last book of the series and therefore must be flawed.
Sorry, but I had to give full stars. This is a great example of writing and storytelling and another fantastic visit into the world of Harry Potter.
It is as if Ms. Rowling knew that she had to end her famous series with a bang. Here she wraps up plotline after plotline, even as she introduces a startling new story that only adds more emotion and characterization. It was a risky move, but a brave one that paid off as she wove together old and new into a poignant tapestry of story and emotion that keeps itself strong until long after I closed the book. While everything is not ended in details, the reader will feel a sense of closure in most areas. As for the exceptions, well, don't we all enjoy a good piece of deserved mystery?
It also seems as if Ms. Rowling's writing as improved. There is a small difference from the perky prose of the earlier books (which I truly did enjoy) but this darker, more poetic style works well for how the story has developed. Her description and emotion is perfect, subtle, and spot-on as she leads our hero through his final adventures.
The characters, to my great enjoyment, remain strong and true even as they have developed and changed. I know many like to complain about character development that does not allow them to remain comfortable in a one-dimensional character, but I felt that all changes were very believable and appropriate. Strangely, Ms. Rowling no longer sees a need to dwell on each character, but I feel that is best. Rather, she lets the characters go and do what they need to do. It shows maturity for everyone.
Then there is the plot itself. I know it is September, but I see no reason to reveal the plot. Suffice it to say that it is all that a Harry Potter plot should be--exciting, complex, and emotional. Sure, there were a few developments that did not surprise me, but that's only because I have had years to debate, think, and obsess. Fans should only be happy they are as intelligent as Ms. Rowling. She keeps up the twists, turns, and seemingly unnecessary horrors that had be throwing down the book in fury only to snatch it up again once I had better control of myself--a mark of a great writer is one that can torture me so.
I will now end with my own little cheesy testimonial: Harry Potter has meant a great deal to me ever since I read the original. I don't care how much hype the books have receive, I love them. They are creative and fun, and I'm glad that the series ended as it did.
Wonderful, wonderful conclusion full of all the emotion and adventure as one could wish.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-10-22 12:31:52.
I've read it a few times by now and I really have to say that this book is a stellar ending to what is probably my favorite fantasy series. Rowling has grown so much as a writer over the years and she has given us so many wonderful characters. Harry's seven year quest comes to a heart pounding conclusion as he and his two great friends race against time to destroy Voldemort's horcruxes before Voldemort can cement his absolute rule over the wizarding world and ours. Along the way old friends show up lend a helping hand, a few favorite characters bite the dust and one beloved father figure turns out to be more complex than we ever dreamed, but the real focus is clearly on the heroes Harry, Ron and Hermione. Their journey is just as harrowing for us as it is for them.
When you turn the final page of the book you are left with mixed feelings. Certainly the epilogue is hardly as detailed as you would like but that leaves the door open for us to continue to imagine these characters and this world existing, a parallel universe that plays to our wildest fantasies. On further reflection over the book and having the chance to reread it at your leisure rather than rushing through it in eight hours right after buying it you realize how richly textured and finely tuned the book really is. The message is beautiful and the characters are so rich and bear much further thought and scrutiny, as all great literary characters should.
Harry Potter captured the imagination of the world for a reason. His is a remarkable story, a conglomerate of all sorts of human fantasies that we have enjoyed for thousands of years. The titular character just may be the coolest boy wizard who ever lived. In his bildungsroman we not only see ourselves but we can fully lose ourselves in childhood fantasy mixed with very real adult horror. With this final volume and excellent conclusion Mrs. Rowling lifts Harry up on the boards with those other great imaginary heroes such as Frodo, Alice, Peter Pan. The writing may be more workmanlike than anything else but the story and detail is excellent.
P.s. can't wait for the encyclopedia.
A Reader posted a review at 2010-01-26 12:19:17.
I haven't heard anyone dissect J.K. Rowling's landmark series in the way that it deserves, much in the way that nobody wants to remark on the emperor's tailoring. Being a professional writer, let me be the first to make a clear distinction between Rowling's imagination, which is impressive, and her prose, which is pedestrian and always reeks of first draft.
My friend Bernadette, an editor on the SF Chronicle, reminds me that Rowling was writing under deadline, since she had set for herself the goal of publishing the books annually so that the adolescent readers could grow up in real time right along with the characters. Still, she didn't have to do that and the writing remains flat.
Deathly Hallows has high points and low points. It starts out in a sort of picaresque manner, with the Potter trio hopping from location to location. Like any travelogue, that was satisfying.
However, I have always been frustrated with Rowling's clues, which are never fully convincing. When Harry hears about the diadem of Ravenclaw, he maps a snap decision that that is the Horcrux, based on nothing, not even a hunch, when it could be any of a million items in Hogwarts.
Her characters' motivations are equally frustrating. Her characters are forever explaining why they've done things, but half the time, those motivations don't make sense. Early in the book, when Ron Weasley leaves the trio, he does so because he expected Harry to know everything and was disappointed. That's a motivation worthy of a 7-year-old, not a 17-year-old. The books is crawling with such wan motivations.
Still, Rowling's imagination has inspired a generation of readers. In fact, it might be said that the Potter books were the major books of the aughts, blemishes notwithstanding. The idea that an 11-year-old who is unappreciated at home should discover that he is actually a wizard, and not just any wizard, but the wizard who will save the world, is enticing enough. But to invent a school system like Hogwarts, which is attractive in the extreme, and wizardly abilities that coincide with all our childhood fantasies--invisibility, flying, levitation, transfiguration, and on and on--is entirely seductive. To set the whole story in a chronological structure that coincides with each school year was brilliant.
What surprised me in this last volume was how, in the end, the mood turned on a dime. Up until the last 100 pages, I was reading a book that was mildly satisfying. But then it transformed into something that was soulful and lovely. Without spoiling it for the rest of you, it shows how much Rowling had plotted this thing from the very beginning, and with great detail. It was a great end to a great series.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-10-09 07:38:58.
SPOILER! Don't read on if you don't want to know.... It was 2am last night when I've finally finished reading the Deathly Hallows, and suffering a post-harry-potter blue syndrome right now. I've been reading (and re-reading so many times) Harry Potter books for 10 years... Harry's stories were in my life for 10 years! And now there's no more...
For those who've read the ending first, I'd say you deserve it! You spoiled the book! You've gotta let the twists and turn build up in the book, to be able to fully appreciate the ending. It's a great plot.
There are so many deaths in the book, it's sad. JK Rowling killed my favorite character! I've mentioned it many times I love the twins the most. They are smart, funny, and very daring. I think Rowling has achieved the point that, at wars, you have to part with your loved ones. How would George feels, with Fred gone? I mourned with him. I totally understand that she wants to kill the heroes for the sake of the novel.... but still, it's sad to see so many deaths.
The most surprising plot was Snape. In all the previous books, Snape hates Harry so badly, you wouldn't imagine he is actually protecting Harry so bitterly, because his love for Lily. Snape is capable to love, and I can't believe this. I knew he's the spy on Dumbledore's side, I always knew. But he actually loves Harry?! Oh, and also Auntie Petunia. She actually wanted to attend Hogwarts! It was jealousy between Lily and Petunia?
The last Horcrux... wow... what an amazing story! I cried when I read how Harry walked into the forest, trying to sacrifice his life to kill Voldemort.... Brave boy... he's the total opposite of Voldemort, who's so afraid to die.. The climax of the series was so shocking. I can't wait to get my hands on the Harry Potter encyclopedia Rowling said she'd publish.
Some people don't understand why others are so crazy about the Harry Potter series. Let me explain why I love it so much. It's the love, loyalty, the friendships that keeps me reading it. I know such pure love & friendship is very fictional, even non-existence in the real world. But that's what makes this book series so captivating. You've gotta be amazed by Harry, Herminone and Ron. How they hang together in tough times. I really want friends like that. From the book, you learn what's love, how to forgive, show remorse. The evil of war....
I cried when Dobby died. :~ What a gripping story.
A Reader posted a review at 2009-01-09 06:50:16.
Well, I suppose its about time to review this book since I read it a year ago.
I have read Harry Potter, or HP, since I was 12 when I read the second book in the series first and I was like "This stuff makes no sense" and "How much pot did Rowling do in order to start a series to this way?" I took me quite a while to realize that year two meant that there was a year one. Quite embarrassing. Anyways I read the first book straight through (which was a good marketing book to indoctrinate youngsters to the series easily, though it worked to well since some youngsters now believe in witches and wizards), and a lot of the stuff in the second book made more sense. I still hated the second book; as a friend of mine once so clearly pointed out: it should have been only a chapter in another book, and the theme of abandonment by peers, which happens so often in the series that there was no need to have a whole book about it (you really start to hate the little pricks at hogwarts because of this). To keep matters short, I thought the 3rd, 4th, 5th book were perfect, and the 6th book left a little bile in my mouth, but it was a good kind of bile that made me relish its puked up goodness as HP. I have read athe first five books more than three times each, and the sixth book twice.
Now comes the 7th final book that I was sure would bring salvation to all mankind and have enough goodness to pull a few cures to cancer out of its ass. Unfortunately, how wrong I was, as it didn't even cure the depression it inflicted upon me as I realized I read and loved most of those books only to have the ending be a disappointment and unfullfilling in every way. When I read the last page of the book (which I consider to before before that trash of an epilogue)I asked myself "Really? Thats the climax?"
I shall now go into the review itself, and I laugh for wasting your time so far.
Spoiler alert: There will be some NEW REVEALING INFORMATION about HARRY POTTER that no one ever brought to mind (and if they did I'm taking the credit).
1. Harry Potter does not have a penis. He never had a pens. I read this kid growing up through puberty and he never drops his balls nor his wonder wand. In the Harry Potter world, apparently there is no such thing as an erection. There is no stiffie for any slut to go through that school, as apparently there are no female body parts as well, nor are they ever mentioned in the Harr Potter world. I know that its a children's book, but Harry Potter never became a real person because he never had this floppy burden all men care to share (not with each other but... well whatever). JK (her preferred author's name, as it reflects the last book) does let Harry notice girls, ad even kisses them, but without the effects of Mr. Wang Potter being ever expressed, Harry has never been a real man. There is no lust in this book that teenagers have, no trash talk about sexuality that teenagers have, and the aspect of sex (do Wizards even have sex ed? If so, is it a wand and wizard hat presentation?) never affects any characters whatsoever. Don't get me wrong: I never wanted JK to add a whole bunch of sex scenes in the book and make it a porno, nor did I want her to explicitly mention Mr. Wang Potter, I just want her to reference it through Harry whenever he is around women. I wanted her to acknowledge it in one sentence. Just one. Perhaps he notices the breasts of a woman and can't look away "at a certain crack." Perhaps he experiences a tightness in his pants, an embarrassment he must cover. Perhaps he can go to the bathroom until the embarrassment goes away. Perhaps he can actually have a dream where he is enjoying his girls in interesting ways. The sex aspect of life is something that is inherent in every man's life, and since the entire series is written from the perspective of Harry Potter (maybe a few oddball chapters here and there) and there is no erection whatsoever, no male body part reaction, Harry Potter fails as a character because he cannot be real if he never experienced one going through puberty.
Oh, and don't give me the it's implied excuse. She just wanted to make money off of kids only is a way better excuse than that, but as someone who writes a lot, I must say that this is why the character is only 99percent of the way to being almost real enough for me to connect to, but without an erection, this is impossible. Therefore, Harry never had a penis, a Mr. Wang Potter, and is therefore a Eunuch.
2. The epilogue does not make sense: If Harry had no Mr. Wang Potter (if you don't get the fact that I named Harry's penis for him there is something wrong with you) then he cannot have sex, and if Harry cannot have sex then he cannot have kids with hilarious names (Albus Severus Potter, whose penis's name is Albus Wang Severus Potter, probably got beaten up as soon as the train left, with his brother and sister joining in for having a name that is nearly half a sentence long). It just doesn't make sense.
3. To be a little more serious, there is a month missing in the book (March or February), which makes it feel like there is a gap of time missing that is left unexplained. I feel like the chapter where Mr. Wang Potter makes and appearance was cut from the editing board.
4. Up until the dream after Harry supposedly is killed (again), the 7th book was great. If you read it, just read it up to the last 7 chapters, and then draw a picture and name it the ending, stick it into the back of the book, and tear out those seven chapters of pages, which are trash. The dream felt like a bad cliche done badly, and after the dream the writing becomes so shortened and quick (as if JK was just trying to get it out to make moe money) that it leaves no satisfaction in any of the scenes.
5. The last of the critique (If you read this so far, you should realize you wasted all of your porn surfing time today) of the book is that the climax fails to bring a climax not only to the book, and far less one to the series. Harry is fighting Lord Voldemort to kill him, and it is the last fight of his life possibly, and what does he do? He says a lame speech (which is rushed) then pretty much farts out a spell, and Voldemort keels over. Voldemort was not killed by Harry, but by the lameness of the fight that he knew JK was writing as his death. There is nothing epic about this battle. There is nothing climactic about his speech. The book has no final revelation that changes me in some way. The book just ends, and that fantastic series you know and love ends with it. IT all feels like a waste of time now, as I was hoping that HP would have an answer to something important about all people, or have a good lesson, but instead it gives nothing but an ending, which is why I believe Harry Potter failed itself in the end, and JK had us read all the way just to tell us that she screwed with us, and that yeah, it was all just a story, and HP can never go beyond that now.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-11-12 07:22:30.
I will be quite honest and admit that after reading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince I was seriously concerned about how Rowling was going to get herself out of the very tight corner she was placed in from a narrative point of view. Nevertheless, I hoped that the conclusion of Harrys adventures would vindicate her many fans ongoing faith in her work. Readers will be pleased to know that their faith in her as a storyteller has been more than justified by the seventh and final installment in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
It is clear that the series as a whole was always intended to encompass eternal issues; love, sacrifice, life, death, redemption, the path they may take for different people, and the cost of choosing what is right over what is easy.
The story in Deathly Hallows begins, in a way reminiscent of The Last Battle, The High King or Silver on the Tree with a sense of doom. The Dark is rising and it is up to Harry and his friends, both in the DA and The Order of the Phoenix, to turn it back. Harry, after initially going into hiding with the Weasley family and Hermione, hatches plans to find the rest of the Horcruxes, since he knows this is the final step he must take before Voldemort can be defeated once and for all. The journey will, however, be a long and winding one, and Harry, Ron, and Hermione must overcome many obstacles before their quest is successfully accomplished.
It is impossible for me to review Rowlings concluding story without particularly noting my admiration for the supremely satisfying development, over the series as a whole, of the character whom I consider in many ways to be the most interesting and complex to be created in recent fantasy fiction; Severus Snape. Not only do we discover the truth about his loyalties, but the denouement Rowling provides satisfies her arc of narrative development on several levels; Snape is not just a death eater, and neither does he emerge in the end as an unlikely hero, though his courage is now firmly established and unquestionable. It is a wonderful irony to discover that in a sense, Dumbledore has betrayed Snape (if only for the greater good) since this puts the two men on an equal footing in a way the reader could not have known. Both need to forgive and be forgiven, which is after all the basis for lasting human relationships.
There is no question in my mind, now that the series is complete, that Rowling will ultimately take her place with other much loved fantasy fiction writers such as Susan Cooper, Lloyd Alexander and C.S. Lewis. Any universe that a writer creates will inevitably be a product of the time, place and culture in which they grew up. Rowlings series, like other classic stories, moves beyond a particular time, place, or culture, and thus has the potential to stand the test of time.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-08-21 12:12:24.
Finally, after 3 days of intense marathon reading of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, I have about 2 hours to write the review of the book before I go to sleep. It's quite a great accomplishment for me to be able to finish reading a 607-page book in 3 days because I have my duties as a mother to be fulfilled before I could have my time to read the book.
As an avid Potter fan, I know how bad it feels to read a review full of spoilers about that book, so in this review, I will avoid mentioning anything that can be considered spoilers.
Let me start my review by giving a standing ovation to J.K. Rowling for her greatest accomplishment in writing this fantastic magical world of Harry Potter. In the 1st 24 hours, this final book of Harry Potter has been sold for 8.3 millions copies in United States alone. Making it to be the fastest-selling book ever in the history. Congratulation, Jo! I tip my hat to you. She is the most genius writer I have ever known. By reading all Harry Potter books, I realize how broad her knowledge is because she does not just any how conjure things to make the story more interesting. Her choice of words, her writing style and the way she develops the suspense really mesmerize me. I think the Harry Potter series should be included in must-read books for your literature references.
Just like the previous books, this final book of Harry Potter series is really engaging. The moment I started reading it, it is extremely hard to pause it. I literally had to scream to myself that my duties as a mother should be my priority. The story is so intense making it so difficult to put down even when my son was running around naked waiting for me to shower him. My son has been very cooperating. He understands how I really wanted to finish reading the book a.s.a.p... ;)
The closure of Harry Potter series is just like what I always wish it would end. It's quite ordinary and I'm sure many of the readers have predicted that way but the way Jo Rowling brought the series to an end is exceptional, definitely beyond what every one could every imagine and think of. The way she convey the message of LOVE AND DEATH is remarkable! It makes a new reference on how you should love and how you should deal with death. It's about who the true master of death is. Deathly hallows versus horcruxes. There is an interesting twist about Severus Snape and Dumbledore in their relationships to Harry Potter. This book is very emotional. I did cry alot reading this book. It is not scary though it's quite bloody. The description of each place or situation is so detail you can even imagine yourself there next to Harry on his adventure to meet Voldemort. It's absolutely fantastic!
On the downside, I think this book is like a summary of all previous books. It's not good though because once you have finished reading this one, you don't feel like you need to read the previous books.
But overall, this is an outstanding book. It's a must-read book for those who still learn to love and still don't know how to deal with death. It's very encouraging and very inspiring. The story and the characters are so rich considering it is a kid-teen story book. The Harry Potter series are my favorite series of all time. I surely will let my son read them and I hope he will love them. If you still want to know who dies at the end, Harry or Voldemort? Get the book and read it! If you can't afford to buy it, try to borrow from your city libraries and be patient. I'm sure the paperback version will be cheaper.
Susan posted a review at 2007-09-25 03:25:17.
Only the most cynical bystander could think that the Harry Potter series could have ended with anything but the triumph of good over evil. The specific methods might range from complete slaughter of everyone to a fairytale ending, but good over evil was never in doubt by Rowling's faithful.
In this final installment, Harry, Ron, and Hermione have dropped out of Hogwarts instead of taking their final year, to concentrate on defeating You-Know-Who. Because Voldemort's powers grow ever stronger, they find themselves on the run, only mildly insulated from the discomforts of the road by magical spells and items. I appreciated that even though Harry and his classmates are on the verge of being graduate wizards, the powers of mature witches, both good and evil, are huge, the way the driving skills of a newly licensed driver are to a stunt driver or racing driver. Even "accio broomstick" is magic to me, but it's baby stuff to real wizards.
The devil is in the details, and this book is so cram-full of details I should have gone back and started from the first book rather than the most recent in order to be up on the story. I didn't remember anything about the Shrieking Shack at all, or the features of the Chamber of Secrets, or dozens of the various elements from books one through six that Rowling threw at me in this one. But that's OK, I just rolled with it and it all worked out fine. My only criticism of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows is that, although it's a great read, the plot is so baroque that Rowling has to pause intermittently for Harry or another character to explain events to someone (who stands in for the reader) or to have a villain confess to Harry when he is sure that Harry is in his clutches.
The facet of Harry's increasing maturity that's under the microscope in what should have been his final year at Hogwarts is his perception of the adults around him. Harry spent most of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7)angry with his headmaster Dumbledore. Harry repeatedly ignored his requests, and withheld information from him. In Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, Harry gets a more three-dimensional view of Dumbledore. At first Harry is intolerant of any flaws in his idol Dumbledore. Harry can't complete his quest until he appreciates Dumbledore as a complete human being. Seeing adults (especially parents) as flawed human beings, and loving them anyway, is the final lesson of growing up. Ultimately Harry's most important lessons, and his most valuable strengths, are the ones that we Muggle readers can aspire to.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-07-23 09:50:32.
This review contains spoilers.
This book is a mixed bag to me, because there are some really good parts, and then there are parts which seem under-developed or otherwise rushed.
First, onto the good parts. The narrative is much better this time because taking the narrative action out of Hogwarts really frees Rowling from the structured imposed on her by the schedule of the school. It's true that you miss out on Quidditch, but I've always felt that it was superfluous anyways. Setting the plot in a new, more adult, more realistic (to the extent that realism is possible in a fantasy setting) context makes the action much more exciting and free.
Second, there is much more moral nuances and complexities in this book than ever before, especially Rowling's decision to challenge the ethical nature of Dumbledore's past actions. But given the good-vs-evil theme of the book, moral complexities are not as rich as they could be, but that sort of complaint is to miss the point of the series in general. Given that the audiences are mostly children and teenagers, more ethical complexity and shades-of-gray would be inappropriate. After all, this is not a series about challenging traditional moral conventions.
Third, the plot picks up in intensity as it should, since it is the last book after all. A sense of urgency is established right from the beginning, and it rarely lets off save some slower stretches during the middle of the book. A lot gets packed into the pages, and it makes for a much more exciting and tense read. But this accelerated pace does not come at the expense of intricacy, since long-time readers are rewarded with a number of conclusions to various sub-plots running throughout the series.
Finally, the book achieves moments of poignancy that goes beyond what the series has produced in the past, such as Harry's burial of Dobby, the ghosts of his loved ones accompanying him on his journey to self-sacrifice, the death of Fred, etc. And the poignancy is not of the mawkish, overly-sentimental variety but of the genuinely cathartic sort.
And here comes the not-so-good parts.
First, because the book is so plot-driven this time, I felt that it short-changed some really interesting characters. Given that the narrative takes place predominantly outside of Hogwarts, it's inevitable that the students (other than the three main protagonists) are given much less face-time so to speak. Even admitting this, I felt that characters like Neville Longbottom, Luna Lovegood, and even Draco Malfoy should have received more development, since each of them have back-stories that could yield huge dividends dramatically: Neville's vengeance for his parents, Lovegood for her father, and Draco's vacilitating between good and evil, etc.
But the character that really got the shaft, in my opinion, is Snape. Rowling (in)famously posed the question of Snape's loyalities, and given his back-story, a confrontation between Harry and Snape would have been extremely dramatic on so many levels. Yet their one encounter yields a scene in which Snape says virtually nothing, and the big revelation that Snape has been loyal to Dumbledore after all is revealed passively in the form of a Pensieve memory. As the character with the most complex morality, Snape gets an extremely short-shrift from Rowling. I was extremely disappointed in this particular encounter, which to me had the most dramatic potential.
The ending is also anti-climatic because what precedes immediately--Harry's voluntary resignation and self-sacrifice--is so much more poignant than his final confrontation with Voldermort. The entire "dream" or "ghostly" encounter with Dumbledore after Harry dies seems like a deus-ex-machina device to me. All that part does is to come up with a lengthy exposition of why Harry can still live with no real continuity with the rest of the book. Sure, it ties up a lot of loose ends with Dumbledore and the Deathly Hallows, but its only real purpose is to make sure that Harry survives.
The confrontation between Harry and Voldermort itself is underwhelming, becoming little more than cliched Hollywood-style exchanges between Hero and Villain. Would the ending be better had Harry died? My immediate answer would be yes, but I think that even if one wanted Harry to survive, there are better ways to do so than this anti-climatic confrontation.
But even with these flaws, I still found the book to be the best in the series, because it achieves a level of intensity that is not found in all previous books. It brings a satisfying conclusion, albeit not a completely satisfying one, to the series. Like the series as a whole, the book is not terribly original, with influences of Arthurian legends and Tolkien easily perceivable, but that in itself is not detrimental because in some ways the line between homage and direct-quotation is a blurry one. The thematic qualities of the book do not reach the level of richness that is characteristic of first-rate literature, but there is an appropriate amount given the audience.
So as far as literature aimed at children and teenagers go, this is not a bad series at all, with terrific entertainment value. But no one should pretend that this stuff compares to Doestoyvesky or Proust. Will it become a classic of the genre? On commercial popularity alone, it is all but done. But only time can tell whether its artistic influences are long-lasting or not.
A Reader posted a review at 2007-07-27 01:12:08.
I finished it in 7 hours and tbh...this was immensely disappointing...
Even from the moment I bought it and said 'wow...is that it?' I knew that this wasn't going to please the majority of people.
There were no real revelations in this book, as there have been in the other ones. They were either predicatable or you'd worked it out already, and I missed that.
The majority of the deaths were waay too rushed, especially Lupin and Tonks which just made me fuckin pissed off as fuck. They are two major characters who had just had a kid of their own, and there wasn't even a single moment to dwell on their deaths, what had happened to them or anything! Fred's wasn't much better either, but at least you knew how he had died and how the family reacted.
The previous 3 books have had major deaths in them, and I'll admit it, they brought a tear to my eye, and that just wasn't the case in this one. It was like, "oh, they're dead. shit. anyway..."
I suppose you can argue that JK wrote it in this way to 'get the reader involved in the pace of the story and the fact that none of the characters had time to dwell on the deaths' but tbh, thats just pretentious bullshit!
In regards to Voldemort at the end, okay sure, all of his horcruxes are gone and its bound to affect him somehow, but fuckin hell he was still a bitchin wizard, so why the hell is he having so much trouble finishing off 3 wizards! He didn't even get one!
That whole sequence seemed so pantomime and rushed. It seemed as if JK was trying to round everything up in Harry's speech. I was expecting at least one vaguely epic battle between him and voldemort like we got in 4&5...but no apparently not.
Even the epic battle wasn't that epic.
Now I move onto Snape and Lily...well who the fuck DIDN'T see that coming?! I had cracked that little chestnut from book 1! If you go back and read the previous books, you will pick up on these little moments.
It was good to see all the stuff with Dumbledore and the planning though...
Most of the book is just Harry, Ron and Hermione wandering aimlessly around the UK trying to work out how to pull their wands out of their arses. Again, it is a matter of complete luck that they manage to find any horcruxes or any major revelations to their quest, which was disappointing as it reminded me of the first books. They books had grown up and so had the characters and they are meant to be pretty badass now so you think they'd be able to work out a little of wtf they are meant to be doing.
Ron and Hermiones kiss...*sigh*...after reading about this chase relationship for years and years you are just going to sum it up in one quick little kiss which is disrupted by Harry shouting "oi, we're in the middle of a battle here"...FUCK YOU JK ROWLING! Not happy with that at all!
Now for what really pisses me off...the 19 years later part...congratulations, we know what happened to four of the characters. Hell I wanna know what happened to George, how everyone got through all their losses, how Ron/Hermione & Harry/Ginnys relationship developed and why the hell the Death Eaters didn't just carry on kicking arse, regardless of the fact that Voldemort was dead!
You've just written this massive battle, the fall of the dark lord and all this other shit and you're just gonna skip 19 years so we can watch their kids get on a train!
WHO'S THE NEW HEADMASTER?!
SO MANY GODDAM PLOTHOLES!!!!!
Also, how come Harry can suddenly use Unforgivable Curses? "You have to mean it" Bellatrix says when he tries one on her. Frankly, I think he'd mean it more after she just killed his only family rather than on some random goblins in Gringotts...
To me, this book reads like the movie script. It's too rushed and nothing is really dwelled on. I refuse to believe that this is how JK Rowling intended to end Harry Potter. Personally I think she would have killed him off.
Hopefully, once all of the hum drum of the films has blow over she will release another version of the book, her version, because this isn't it. Not by a long shot...
A Reader posted a review at 2007-07-25 12:50:58.
1.) My biggest complaint is that we were given no closure for anybody except "the holy trinity." (the miniscule mentions of Neville and Draco notwithstanding) We never get to see how the Weasleys, especially George, cope with the loss of Fred. Neither Fred, Lupin, nor Tonks get any kind of memorial service or words spoken over them. How is it that even Dobby the House-Elf can get a funeral service but the rest can't? How is it that Cedric Diggory, who we only knew for one book, gets like, two whole chapters dedicated to honoring his memory, as well as many mentions throughout the rest of the books, but Fred, Colin, Lupin, and Tonks don't? It was a very like the case of Norrington in Pirates of the Caribbean. After he died, no one said a single word about it, or seemed to remember him at all. OK, so Lupin gets to reappear as a ghost for a little while, and Fred gets a some poetic lines about him (the mention of how he died laughing, Harry feeling that "the world had ended," and the dementors using Fred's death as a way to make Harry despair.) But why couldn't they have gotten memorial services like everyone else did? Why not cut out some of the pointless wandering in the first half of the book and use that space to remember the dead properly? And what about Tonks and Colin? They don't even get as much as Fred and Lupin. We could have at least been told how they died.
For that matter - why did these characters have to die at all? I mean, I get the fact that war is sad and senseless death occurs, but since this is the world of fiction, and authors can choose who dies - why not go for the deaths that would have the most meaning behind them? So the Tonks & Lupin die/Harry become godfather thing was supposed to echo the James & Lily die/Sirius becomes godfather thing, but as we don't get to see Harry being the godfather, there really was no point. And as for Fred, I felt that having Percy die instead of Fred would have had much more emotional weight. It would have sealed his redemption by showing that he really was back on the family's side. He could have thrown himself in front of Fred to protect him (which he ended up doing after Fred's death, anyway) to further the whole Boromir traitor-who-came-back-and-sacrificed-himself-for-others thing. (It's not like she doesn't borrow from Lord of the Rings already. See point 6 of this review for details.) But as it stands, the deaths were very POTC-ish, where people die for no other reason than just to be an "haven't I written SUCH a TRAGIC story?" moment.As livejournal user teh_no put it in his satire of At World's End:
Elizabeth: Dad, take this rope and donâ€™t die.
Daddy Swann: *doesnâ€™t take rope*
Elizabeth: Why are you just letting yourself die?
Daddy Swann: Because this movie needs a tragic deathâ€¦ or twoâ€¦ or threeâ€¦ four, if you count the kid.
Dobby's death I could understand, because he went in the act of saving Harry. Mad-Eye, I can kind of understand, because he'd already almost gone out fighting tons of times. If Percy had died, it would have had a purpose, as we've already discussed. But Fred, Lupin, and Tonks? It seems to me that Rowling only made them die for no reason other than she felt the book needed a few more "SOO TRAGIC!!!" moments. Tragic death is fine as long as it has a point. It's not fine when it's there just for the sake of being tragic death.
Getting back to the point about getting no closure for most of the characters, how hard would it have been to let us know what the characters besides H, Hr & R were doing with their lives? I've had someone tell me that you can't go into detail about every single character, but Rowling didn't mind going into great detail about every one of them in other books, so why not now? And she told what happened to Neville and Malfoy, so why not everyone? Are we just supposed to not care about them simply because they're not part of the "SOO AWESOME!!" trio? Are we supposed to be so overwhelmed with joy that "the holy trinity" survived that we forget about everyone else? Are we just supposed to follow these other characters throughout 7 books and then not be interested in how they end up? Especially when they had a very tragic event happen to them last time we saw them? *cough*GEORGE*cough* If Malfoy, who Harry hated for most of the story, is deserving of a mention at the end, why not the people who had been very close to Harry through the whole series? Seriously, today I saw some promo pictures of Dumbedore's Army for the Order of the Phoenix movie, and I thought "Why even promote these characters if you're just going to abandon them in the end?" Because, that's what Rowling did when she chose to kill some of them for no apparent reason (Fred & Colin), and never even tell us the ending of others. (Like Luna, or Seamus, or Dean) Once you commit to writing a character, any character, even if it's not your favorite, you need to give them nd ending. You can't just leave their stories half finished, like JKR did with Luna, Dean, etc.
2) I found Rowling to be rather weak when it comes to writing romance. This was first evident in Half Blood Prince when Harry just suddenly out of the blue liked Ginny, and we are given no explanation of how, why, or when he started to like her. Was JKR was not capable of decently developing these kinds of things, so she just left them out? It's a shame she did so, because she does pretty well at developing other things, that don't have to do with romance, like Snape's whole convoluted history, for example.
But even if romance is not Rowling's strong point, she should have at least tried. Hasn't she ever heard the phrase "the greatest distance is the one between two people?" Meaning: how people come to love each other is an epic journey all on its own. It's not something you can just instantly make happen. DEVELOP the relationship, SHOW us how they came to be together, don't just suddenly slap them together out of nowhere, and THEN maybe the pairing will be believable.
She did slightly better with Hermione & Ron, because there were signs in the previous books of some attraction, but the scene where they finally kissed felt very forced. For two people who were unable to express their feelings for like, all 7 books, for them to have no shame about it whatsoever just seemed kind of..random. I know, I know, it was supposed to be like, "Aaah, heat of battle, no time for reservations!" but I felt Rowling could have developed it a more. Like have them letting down their defenses little by little throughout the book, and having this be the last, final barrier to overcome, rather than having them fighting and hiding their emotions right up until the end.
3) The epilogue. It seemed to be at a level of cheesiness that did not fit with the rest of the book. The names of the children were rather corny. Hugo? Rose? Albus Severus? Giving R & Hr's kid's names to correspond with the first letters of their parents names is, in my opinion, quite corny. And who is going to give their little child such a big, unwieldy name as Albus Severus? Names aside, the writing itself did not seem up to par. It was very base level - like something that an eight or ninth grader would write. Rowling relies on simple phrases like Hermione being "half stern, half amused," whereas before she would have explained what exactly in Hermione's intonation and facial expression indicated that she was in between emotions. It seemed like JKR just got tired here at the end of the book, and stopped trying to be creative.
The epilogue also exposed Rowling's weakness at writing romance again.The interactions between the supposedly "sooo in love" characters of Ron & Hermione, and Harry & Ginny really don't indicate any love. The all just seem very platonic. No mention of anyone looking tenderly at their spouse, or how one hears that note in the other's voice that they love so much, or how they adored the way their spouse related to their children, or anything. I guess we're just supposed to assume that the characters are "sooo in love" just because they're married. Neither in the story in nor in the epilogue do we get any evidence that they actually are.
4). The grammar. Minor quibble here, but there were several times throughout the book, that I noticed a glaringly incorrect use of commas. If you're going to write nearly 800 pages in the English language, you ought to know how the English language works before you do so. And JKR needs to find another word for people who are confused besides "bemused!". And why does Hermione have to say everything "shrilly?" The "shrilly" has been going for a while now, not just in Deathly Hallows. Seriously, a thesaurus would have benefited the author greatly.
5) There was no need for the profanity. Especially egregious was the Molly scream towards the end. It seemed rather out of character, and just kind of took me out of the story for a bit. It also showed a lack of originality. Truly eloquent writers (and speakers) can come up with witty ways express themselves without having to resort to common, vulgar phrases. There are much more poetic and creative ways to insult people.
6) In previous books I was willing to overlook some of the Lord of the Rings inspired aspects of Harry Potter - a hero who has no parents and lives with his uncle, (Frodo & Bilbo vs. Harry & Vernon) an elderly wizard mentor who at first appears to be a sort of benevolent Santa Clause, but turns out to be much stronger and powerful than he first seemed. (Gandalf vs. Dumbledore) Evil, faceless, black-hooded creatures who pursue the protagonist. (Ringwraiths vs. Dementors) and a giant, man-eating spider (Shelob vs. Aragog). But now that this 7th book adds an evil amulet that makes you feel depressed and down-trodden while you wear it, but you feel happy again when you take it off, (the One Ring vs. the Horcrux) that affects one member of the party more negatively than the others, causing that person to eventually turn on his friends, (Boromir vs. Ron) plus a bad character who the hero once showed mercy to, and because of that, owes the hero something, and turns out to play a key role in the hero achieving his mission. (Gollum vs. Wormtail), it really does get to be a bit much.
7) All in all, I felt that the readers, and the majority of the characters, were badly mistreated by Rowling and her Deathly Hallows. She took potshots at some of them just to fulfill cliches, shoved endings upon others without really developing those endings, and simply stopped caring about the rest. As for the writing itself, several spots showed incompetence and a lack of creativity.
The other day someone told me that it was okay for Rowling to write the book the way she did because it was her book and she could do whatever she wanted with it. But if I buy a dog, is it okay for me to kick it and starve it and generally mistreat it, because it's my dog and I can do what I want with it? No - because there is someone else on the other side of the relationship, and their feelings count just as much as mine, so it is not right or fair to abuse them. And what Rowling failed to realize is that there are people on the other side of her pen, both real and fictional, and it wasn't fair to mistreat us by giving only hurried half-glimpse of an ending rather than taking the time to give both readers and characters the well-thought out conclusion we deserved.