Monday, July 18, 2005

The Half-Blood Prince

I just finished the new Harry Potter a few hours ago and I don't know what to say.

I loved it, and I think it is the best written yet. But if you haven't gotten more than halfway through, slow down or stop all together, and savor the wizarding world as you know it, because their world is going to be blown apart by the end. That is as far as I will go with the spoilers for now, but remember, this is one to be cherished. It leaves lots of huge cliffhangers and J.K. has already announced another two year wait on the final installment.

If you can't tell by now, I happen to be a HUGE HP fan. I've read the books several times through, I really enjoy the movies, and I eagerly await the release of each new story. The books just have so many good lessons on friendship, good vs. evil, and being aware of the cost of our own actions on the people around us. I think J.K. Rowling is a very good and kind writer who knows how to tell and excellent engaging story.

I know some people out there disagree. All I can say is make an informed choice. Before you start spouting "black magic, Satanism, witchcraft, hate" talk, read one of the books. You are an adult, I'm sure your mind can handle a book originally written for eleven year olds. I will say that I have never met anyone yet who, once they had actually read the first book (Harry Potter and the Scorcerer's Stone), didn't find them charming and lovely stories. In my opinion, the HP books contain no more magic than your average fairy tale and usually it is used for a lot less selfish purposes.

To illustrate:

Snow White- The Queen is jealous, so she uses magic to try to kill her rival and be the "Pretty Popularity Queen"

Cinderella- She wants to go to the big party, so her fairy godmother gives her a new 'do, dress, and flashy ride. She goes off to snag the richest guy in the land.

Sleeping Beauty- The fairy is mad at being snubbed a party invite, so she death hexes the birthday girl.

I'm not saying that I don't like fairy tales (trust me, I love them), but that the magic of HP and the magic of fairy tales are one and the same; the magic of the imagination. Childhood and adulthood for that matter, would be a pretty bleak place without it. So if you have no problem with fairy tales, "The Wizard of Oz", or card tricks, don't be afraid of giving Harry a try. I'm sure you'll like him and his friends.

** On a side note, if you are reading them for the first time, keep in mind that they were written with an eleven year old and older audience in mind. If your kiddos are younger than this, read it together. They might find some of the happenings scary or confusing without Mom and Dad's help. The movies and merchandising may be aimed at much younger children, but that is not the author's fault. Besides, you should read together with your children anyway! :)


knowone. said...

drfishy520 here from . Nice blog, and thanks for not using all kinds of annoying custom templates. I haven't picked up the new Harry Potten book yet, mostly because I only read the first 3. Do you need to read the others to understand the story?

Keep up the good work.

impromptu-mom said...

I'd say no, you don't need to read all of the books to enjoy them, but really, they are worth the read and you get more out of them if you have read them all. The older the characters get, the deeper the story lines are. Read them all and enjoy!

sparrow said...

You make a lot of good points! I especially like your illustrations from fairy tales that most find "safe".

On another note: a two year wait???!!! Argh. Still, the last one is going to be sad, I just know it. Maybe I'll be more ready for it then.

impromptu-mom said...

sparrow, if you are concerned about sad, don't finish the new one. I have to say that I cried for about a half hour after I finished it and I've been in little funk ever since. I'm starting over with book one right now to go back and look at some of the stuff that was revealed in HBP.

Happy Housewife said...

i-Mom, I am back. :)

It seems like God is asking me to read Harry Potter. I am getting too many 'co-incidental' references to it to not notice. Maybe it is just the season for Potter, but with so many people trying to convince me to read the book, I think finally, I WILL try it, afterall... :)

What's the point in being so opinionated about a book you never have read, anyway? :) Might as well have that opinion AFTER reading it, no?

Ok, I'll read. You have at least one convert here. :)

[Got your message on yahoo just now. Sorry, I've been missing in action. I'll explain shortly. For now, I am back! :) ]

Happy Housewife said...

i-Mom, I've left a message for you on yahoo messenger. :)