REVIEW: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

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Synopsis:

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike.

And strike it does. For in Harry’s second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls’ bathroom, and the unwanted attentions of Ron Weasley’s younger sister, Ginny. But each of these seem minor annoyances when the real trouble begins, and someone, or something, starts turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possibly be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects: Harry Potter himself?

REVIEW

Since I plan on reading the rest of the series, I didn’t think it would be necessary for me to write a long review for each book, so instead I’m going to try and keep it simple 😉

I really liked this one, and it’s because of the things I discovered while reading it; things that were never touched on in the movie that I think should have been. This cemented my belief on the whole iceberg concept (The movie is only ten percent of the story and the other ninety is the book), and I was really glad I continued Harry’s story.

Saying I was impressed with the way everything came together in the plot and had a purpose at the end of the story is an understatement. The way Rowling can weave a tale is amazing, and it makes for easy reading and real fascination, even though I’m not the twelve-year-old demographic it’s meant for.

If I did have one thing to complain about, it would be the ridiculous amount of people who hate Harry, or pass him off as a bad kid. Like seriously? Everyone hates him, and it just seemed impossible to me that he’d have so many enemies. Teachers, aunt and uncle, cousin, fellow school mates to which he has never done a thing to harm. I felt so bad for him in this one, and yet he kept going, even forgiving the idiots that called him evil. He really is a great role model for kids, and adults, alike.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling = 4 stars

REVIEW: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

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Synopsis:

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come.

REVIEW

As I said in the previous post, I had only ever read the final book to the Harry Potter series and that was a good six or so years ago. And it was my mission this summer to read the first one and possibly the rest in the series. And I did it! (Well, at least one, that is 😉

So, my first thoughts?

When I read (*coughs* audiobook “read”) this, all I could think was that if I had been able to get my hands on this when I was eleven, I would have been obsessed with it. The world building, character eccentricities, magical classes, DRAGONS and UNICORNS, I would have DIED to read the next book and the next. But alas, I am 21 now and I still felt a wonderful connection to each and every character. It’s funny, the older I get, the more I want to connect to things from my childhood, or the things I wished I’d had, like this amazing book here. I guess we all have a kid in us that never leaves, huh?

I thought Rowling did an amazing job with this one, just like she had with the last. The writing is simple – explanations not too long or detailed for the age of the children reading this story. I loved how every character had something you could relate to, whether it be Ron’s sarcasm, Hermione’s wit, Harry’s loneliness, or even Neville’s lack of courage, and then redemption. I especially loved Harry’s enrollment into the Weasley family, and how we got a more detailed look at Percy, George, Fred, and even a little bit of Charlie, unlike with the movie. All in all, I really enjoyed it, and see myself re-reading it again, if only to get sucked into the wizarding world one more time 🙂

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling = 5 stars

Currently Reading : Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

If you follow me on Instagram (@authorindaherwood) then you know I’ve been listening to the audiobook of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”, which is my first audiobook read EVER. I never thought I’d have the patience to listen to someone else read slow (LOL), but this has been a lot of fun. And weirdly enough, out of all the Potter books, I’ve only ever read the last one, and that’s because I was impatient for the final movie to come out haha. So far I’m really impressed with how closely the movie followed the book, which is definitely not something I say often.

Review to come!

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Synopsis:

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Review/ Happy New Year!

Hello all! I know this might be an odd day to post a review, but I thought what better way is there to bring in the New Year than with books? I really hope each and every one of you had a good 2016, and for those of you who didn’t, then I’m going to pray that 2017 is your year! May we focus on the good rather than the bad and count our blessings every day, being thankful that we are living, breathing, and have books to comfort us when nothing else can. Thank you for sticking with me this year, readers. And I hope more great things are to come in the New Year. Now, let’s write a review, shall we?

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Synopsis:

The Eighth Story. Nineteen Years Later.

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

REVIEW

Alright, I’m going to get right to it. When this book came out, I lost my mind, screamed (in that order) and instantly put it on my to-read list. And then a little time went by and other new books came out and I shamefully forgot about it for the time being. But then I came across a review for it one day, and I was like, OMG HOW DID I FORGET! To make up for my fish brain mind, I went to the library, checked it out, and then preceded to read it within eight hours. And now for the results…

Okay, so I could instantly tell that J.K did not write this. I could sense it from the very first page, and not just because it was written in the style of a play. But because the characters’ way of acting, speaking, and overall demeanor were just…off. Still, I powered through despite it reading like a fan fiction and found myself really enjoying the new characters and where their adventures had taken them. I would have liked more descriptions of where they were and what it felt like – maybe even some facial expressions, I don’t know. Yet again, I felt like the play format hurt the integrity of the book. They should have adapted a new manuscript from the dialogue and made an actual, legit eighth book out of it instead of being lazy and sticking with the play style, knowing Potterheads would buy it either way. It just never felt when reading it that it was an actual continuation of the series. Again, it probably ties back to it not being written by our book savior.

Besides all that, I really loved the adventure and the shocking details discovered by two young boys trying to live up to their fathers’ names. And who would have thought I would lose my heart to a Malfoy? But the amazing thing about this book was that you did start to see once hated characters in another light, years after the Battle of Hogwarts, and I liked seeing where everyone had gone with their careers and families. It was nostalgic and I couldn’t help but be sucked back into the wizarding world of Harry Potter.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (NOT written by J.K. Rowling) = 4 stars

 

SPOILER! LOOK AWAY IF YOU HAVE NOT READ IT YET. I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR ACTIONS IF YOU DO BECAUSE I GAVE YOU FAIR WARNING.

Okay, can someone tell me who’s horrible idea it was to make Snape die again? Because damn, it hurt like hell the first time, and then some idiot must have been like, “No, I don’t believe we destroyed the fans’ souls quite enough. Let’s kill him again, shall we?”

*In a perfect Alan Rickman’s voice as Snape* You, sir, are a sniveling bastard.

 

 

J.K. Rowling: Tips for Success

So last night I was on YouTube and came across this video on J.K. Rowling and her tips for writing success. I found it really helpful and thought it might inspire some of my fellow authors out there who are feeling a bit discouraged at the moment.

Being a writer is a difficult and often emotionally draining job. Every now and then we need to be reminded that though this career has major ups and downs, what matters is that we always learn from both positions, and remember that this is what we love to do. We’re story tellers, and the world deserves what our minds can create.

I hope this helps some of you, and pray that you’re all having a blessed day!