July 27, 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by JK Rowling

I didn't get into the Harry Potter books until the first movie came out. My friend dragged me to see it when I was visiting her in Victoria, and then loaned me books 2, 3, and 4, which at the time was as far as they went. Because she didn't have the first book and I'd enjoyed the film, I bought Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in the gift shop on the ferry home and proceeded to devour it. There's nothing I love more than finding a book you can completely lose yourself in, especially when you're in transit and have nothing but time. (I admit to having the same fond feelings for The Da Vinci Code, which totally killed a 10 hour flight home from the UK.)

I remember staying up until 5 am to finish book 4, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I was horrified when Cedric Diggory was killed, but because the previous books had been so gentle, I fully expected him to be revived somehow. When there was no more to read and he was certainly not coming back, I closed the book and cried with genuine shock and sadness.

To commemorate the very last Harry Potter movie coming out, I decided to reread the last book. I'm glad I did. While I quite enjoyed the first of the two Deathly Hallows movies, I didn't like this one so much. It seemed to miss out on too many things. Like, I'm not sure if Tonks was even pregnant in the movie. The book is much richer in detail and feeling. To me, the epic climactic battle at Hogwarts was better in the reading than the showing, and should that be so? And they really dropped the ball on the deaths. Shouldn't the passing of Fred, Lupin and Tonks have made me sadder than Dobby and Hedwig? The epilogue was well done, but I don't think you can beat the last sentence of the book. "All was well."

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