Thursday, July 12, 2007

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, by JK Rowling

In anticipation of the release of Book 7, I decided to read Book 6 again. In the past, before each release, I’d reread all of the previous books. This time that was gonna be a little too time consuming, and I have the advantage of being able to watch condensed versions of the first 5 books in movie form, so it was just a revisit to Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince that was required to prepare.

I was glad I decided to read this one again. For one thing, when it came out I read it in about 24 hours, so that was a long time ago. I forget things. For another, I just LOVE these books! JK Rowling truly has created a magical world that feels like home when I’m reading her books. When the book’s not in my hands, I find myself daydreaming about what Harry and company are up to at the moment. I can’t wait to find those precious minutes to read more.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince is mostly a lead up to the grand finale. In Book 5 (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix), we learn that evil Lord Voldemort has truly returned, and HBP is Harry’s chance to prepare for the fight of his life. The entire book feels anticipatory—what can Harry possibly do to be ready to fight such darkness? When I read it the second time, I remembered the ending and found myself crying long before the actual tragic end to one of the main characters. It was like losing a close family friend. When I finished the last page, I found myself thinking about Harry as you might think of a friend who’s about to embark of the challenge of his life. You reflect on that friend’s strengths, reassure yourself that he is, indeed, capable of success, and feel butterflies in your stomach at the prospect of how it’s all going to go down.

I still haven’t stopped stopping to think and root for Harry a little bit every now and then. And in 8 short days, I’ll get to find out how it all ends. I am on pins and needles.

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