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I enjoyed this more than I remember doing first time round. I still think it has some pretty serious flaws. I find Harry's adolescent surliness for much of the book simply boring, and his reconciliation with Dumbledore at the end feels flat to me since we have always been pretty sure that it was going to happen. And the construction of the legal system and governance of the wizarding world is not quite substantial enough to be described as superficial. (Just one example: in what sort of school would the Slytherin supporters' merciless mockery of Ron Weasley not result in serious disciplinary measures against the perpetrators?)

Having said that, the high points were higher than I remembered. There are some good descriptive passages, especially of particular settings - the forest, the Ministry; and the second order characters, Sirius, Luna, the twins, etc, all get much more development. (One is a bit sorry for Cho Chang whose subplot gets lost in the second half of the book.) I still think this is one of the weaker volumes of the series, but I think I must have raced through it so fast first time round that I missed a lot of its better elements.

I'm going to end my Rowling re-read here, since this was the first part of my programme of returning to popular books I have read but not previously written up on Livejournal, and I have written up volumes six and seven. Next in this sequence is therefore Tolkien's The Hobbit.

< Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone | Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets | Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban | Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire | Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix | Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince | Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows | The Tales of Beedle the Bard >

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
davesangel
Jun. 30th, 2009 05:56 pm (UTC)
One is a bit sorry for Cho Chang whose subplot gets lost in the second half of the book

Yeah she really did get a raw deal in the film. I know it was a hefty-ish book to translate from page to screen but it wouldn't have taken that long to feature a bit more of the character development that occurs with the secondary characters (especially Sirius, given what happens in book 5, and he's only featured very briefly in the fourth film).
redfiona99
Jun. 30th, 2009 10:07 pm (UTC)
OOTP gets better the further I am removed from teenagerhood, because I stop wanting to strangle Harry. I'm still not over wanting to bludgeon Cho but I do think she's a fantastically written example of her sort of girl.

I can't remember what they do to Ron but I seem to recall our inter-house banter got a little on the vicious side.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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