Tag Archive: Harry Potter


Harry Potter Fact #209


Omg…and to think I’ve considered Ron and Hermione a done deal since the 3rd book…

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Has anybody else realized that Teddy Lupin contains a small part of each of the Marauders (the real ones, that is – minus Wormtail) in some way? He’s Remus’ son, Sirius’ great-nephew (I think? Because Tonks was Sirius’s niece), and James’ god-grandson (grand-godson?) He’s also half-werewolf and half-Metamorphmagus. All that pretty much makes him the coolest next-generation character I can imagine.

Thinking about what his life would have been like raises a lot of questions in my mind. How is being Harry Potter’s godson and also the son of a werewolf going to work out for him? Does he really inherit Remus’ condition? What effect does he have on Harry? And does winning the second war against Voldemort change the wizarding world’s attitude towards house-elves, goblins, and other mixed-breed and non-human magical creatures at all?

I think Jo intentionally left his character ambiguous. We never actually see him in person, as a baby or as the full-grown adult he is in the epilogue. The most we fans can do is imagine…sigh.

Harry Potter Month is back!


Ok, yes. I’ve been gone for a while (again). But fear not! September was Harry Potter Month last year on my blog, and I’m doing it again. I may intersperse other things in there (being that *ahem* I’m running out of material), but it’s happening. I KNOW there are more fans on WordPress, show yourselves!

Harry Potter Fact #83


🙂 Perfect.

A Harry Potter prequel?!


Oh my god. Oh my god. This exists!!!

Apparently, J.K. Rowling wrote this a while ago for charity. How amazing is that? It’s only 4 pages, and it details an encounter young James and Sirius have with the police one night. Someone else joins the party at the very end. Read it here! And be excited!

 


Late last night…comparatively, that’s eons. It’s not a long book and I’ve finished the last few Harry Potters in less than 24 hours after I got them, but this one was a lot different. The thing where I wrote short posts while reading rather than one long review after is new, and I think it helped this time. I might keep doing that for future books.

My best advice to anyone who picks up this book is this: Try your darnedest to ignore that JK Rowling wrote it, and forget (as you’re reading and for a while after) that you ever knew anybody named Harry. There are definitely some recurring themes and parallels between the characters/places in The Casual Vacancy versus Harry Potter, so if you’re looking for the story of your favorite boy wizard within these pages, it’s not hard to find. But if you put this new story in the context of the series, you will almost certainly destroy every memory of Harry Potter that was once innocent and magical. There are things you actually see and experience with these characters that you only hear about in Potter, and while I’m sure putting them together would be a wonderful project for some Literature student somewhere, I’m not up for it. Certain connections just happened in my head before I realized it; I regret those already and I’m not keen on going farther down that road. 

Also, if you’re new to the adult fiction genre, pick up The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo or something similar and see if you can get through that first. I found The Casual Vacancy that level of intense. I feel like there’s very little I can say that can ring true for most readers, though. What you think about this book will be all about what’s “real” to you. For me, the majority of Pagford, the Fields, and what festers there was real, and that’s why I might find it more disturbingly chilling than someone else would. That’s less likely to be true for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo because that story, while morbidly engaging and fascinating, is a bit more removed from the readers’ lives.

It’s Rowling’s ability to create a world that completely draws you in that does it…it’s a priceless gift I wish I had, but in this book, it’s almost sinister. Like I said, there’s not much I like about most of the characters. My growing dislike of Pagford – it reminds me of a place I’ve lived that I absolutely detested – made me want to slam down this novel and go read some Dr. Seuss instead, and the fact that I physically couldn’t shows that Jo’s writing here is as powerful as it ever was in Harry Potter. At the end of the book, I was so invested that I wanted a few of them (namely Fats, Simon Price, Obbo, and almost all the Mollisons) thrown off a cliff. They’re so damaging and destructive that they probably would’ve turned the sea below into liquid nitrogen.

Instead, the one who pays the price is the only one who is completely without rebuke. The way JK Rowling pulled off that ending is nothing short of poetic. I don’t think I can call her Jo anymore.

This is a brilliantly written book, but whatever humor is there is completely black. Nothing is sacred, no one carefree, no place an escape. She does an expert job at weaving them all together to make sure of that. The whole thing is so unrelentingly grey that I’d rather be back in Snape’s dungeon or in detention with Dolores Umbridge with the relief of an actual enemy to fight. At least they inspired some form of unity in resistance. There’s nothing unifying about Pagford; in fact, to me, it’s a picture of the banality of evil.

Pagford is not the safe haven that Hogwarts was. It’s a place I wouldn’t ever want to go back to, except I’ve already opened the damn Pandora’s box inside my head. I’m not sure what, if anything, is still left in it.

I know the thought of experiencing Rowling’s writing for the first time again is exciting, but trust me, don’t go there until you’re good and ready for it. Or you’ll end up making ignorant-ass comments like Kevin Nance’s comparison of Fats to Ron Weasley in his review for the Chicago Sun Times.

Ron is one of the most relatable and beloved HP characters, you snooty little condescending prick. He jumped in a frozen-over lake to save his best friend, while Fats gave his best friend a peanut inside a marshmallow knowing that Andrew was allergic. Fats is a sadistic, cowardly psychopath among the purest forms of evil in this book, and from your work, you sound like the type of person who would be nodding with an indulgent smile if you were to sit down and discuss his poisonous bullshit about authenticity over mimosas. If anything, Fats is Voldemort. Go back, reread, and in the future, stick to being an architecture critic.


I’m stoked. Stoked! I’ve only finished the first chapter (which is only a couple of pages) so far, but I already love it and know it’s going to be sort of a bittersweet experience for me.

The first character we meet is named Barry. He’s married to a woman named Mary. That alone feels like a smile and wave from a friend who I thought had forgotten all about me.

Go buy the book, kids. I’m off to enjoy my brand-new hardcover copy for which I paid the actual retail price – something I haven’t done since…oh yeah, Harry Potter. 🙂


That’s cheating, I know…but I couldn’t choose between them. It’s not meant as a diss to Imelda Staunton’s Umbridge or the written portrayal of Barty Crouch Jr. They’re both wonderfully despicable.

Look at that. David Tennant’s face could become a meme right there. He was amazing in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. That’s a really important book in the series and the Prisoner of Azkaban movie kind of disappointed me, so when I went to watch the movie I was nervous about how well the story would be represented on screen. This was the period when directors were being switched around and things looked as unsteady as possible for a film series that has never changed the three main actors, but David Tennant did not disappoint. His whole story is morbidly fascinating, made only more so by his being one of the Death Eaters who tortured Neville’s parents into madness, and he conveys the qualities of his character perfectly on screen. It’s a fairly difficult task given how many little details from the book were left out.


On to Umbridge…to be frank, I think she was way scarier in the books than in the movies for some reason. She didn’t end up looking as unpleasant as I was hoping (although the abundance of pink did help her get there) and I was particularly upset that the teacher inspections and fights with McGonagall were either cut out or nowhere near as intense as I expected. From my perspective, those were a key part of her character because that’s how her evil was articulated in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Imelda Staunton didn’t really take risks with the character like David Tennant did (quick tidbit: the tongue thing was actually an improvisation on his part and not in the script…genius). I don’t mean to compare them as actors rather than characters, but when you’re talking about a beloved book that became an equally beloved movie, it’s hard not to. In the books, she gets under everyone’s skin and makes students and teachers alike hate her so much that she kind of becomes a unifying force among those who might not otherwise even speak to each other. The obvious example is the formation of Dumbledore’s Army, which teaches Harry such an important lesson (that he doesn’t have to do everything alone, even if he is the Chosen One) and is so incredibly important to his ultimate triumph. Not gonna lie, though, I kinda wish we’d gotten to see the bitch dying at the end of Deathly Hallows 2.

So, do you agree? Disagree? Have a different villain in mind entirely?

A/N: Yes, I am aware that September aka Harry Potter Month has ended. However, I did such a pathetic job of it that I feel like it’s physically impossible for me to call it quits yet. I have some awesome posts lined up for the grand finale, and I’m gonna get them out of my drafts queue. So I’ll extend HP Month to the end of October, but that’s it. I’ll probably still do some HP posts after that, but it’ll be back to business as usual for the most part.

Harry Potter Fact #242



A lot of people I know say this one might be their least favorite book because of how angsty and moody Harry is (and also because of who dies at the end). It’s true, his character really does get darker in this book and we discover some of his imperfections. It’s hard to relate to for younger kids, but for me, it came out at the perfect time. I’m one of the lucky ones who was the same age as Harry when all the later books were released, and 15 was not a good time for me. It was kinda nice thinking about his troubles for a bit.

I also love the glimpses of the previous generation we get in this book…not to mention Dumbledore’s Army. Bad. Ass. To top it off, Order of the Phoenix contains my favorite Potter villain. I enjoy loathing Dolores Umbridge almost more than Lord Voldemort because as the series goes on, she becomes proof that bureaucracy, when corrupt, can be its own class of evil. She institutionalizes everything that Harry fights against, and he still finds a way to get around it. The way J.K. Rowling writes about abandonment and anxiety just makes his courage that much more admirable.

Plus, this is the book where Fred and George Weasley make their grand exit from Hogwarts, which is without a doubt one of my favorite scenes in the entire series. I can’t even count how many times I dreamed about sticking it to the teachers/admin and walking out of school when I was 15. To see it done so creatively and described in such vivid detail always makes me smile. That scene translated beautifully onto the silver screen, too. I went to the midnight premiere when the movie came out and the entire theater was cheering!

I like seeing Harry’s darker side in this book…it prevents his character from falling into the stereotype of the perfect hero who everyone loves. I can’t think of many other novels in which the writer makes the negative perception of the protagonist this believable. I’ll admit, there were some points at which I didn’t really like Harry myself, but I think it’s needed in order to stop him from ending the series looking like a saint.

For me, this book is the one that has the perfect blend of humor, dark themes, and run-of-the-mill teenage worries. The later ones start to reflect deeper political and social issues more, which I love, but can’t always connect with the same way.