Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I have finished reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the 4th in the series of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter collection.

As a side note, I do absolutely love the artwork of the covers on these Bloomsbury Harry Potter books!

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was another highly enjoyable read. It was definitely another page turner as the story kept developing nicely. In particular, this book heralded the re-birth of Lord Voldemort, detailing how he managed to come back to a body and power.

Of course, it was the final few chapters where the story was pieced together like a jigsaw, making previous chapters and their contents fall into clear perspective. The death of Cedric Diggory was a shock to all, as well as Harry dueling with Voldemort and managing to escape with the help of apparitions of his dead parents.

As intriguing as the Triwizard Tournament was, the Goblet of Fire marks the return to power of Lord Voldemort and worrying times ahead for Harry and all at Hogwarts. Despite the sombre mood it creates, and the tendency to cover up harsh truths as Cornelius Fudge seemed so determined, Professor Dumbledore reminds, 

"Understanding is the first step to acceptance, and only with acceptance can there be recovery." and,

"It is my belief, however, that the truth is generally preferable to lies." and,

"I say to you all again - in the light of Lord Voldemort's return, we are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided. Lord Voldemort's gift for spreading discord and enmity is very great. We can fight it only by showing an equally strong bond of friendship and trust. Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open." and,

"Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right, and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good, and kind, and brave, because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort. Remember Cedric Diggory."

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is the third installment of J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series. It is a page turner as Rowling keeps the story going tirelessly. 

Harry learns how to create a 'patronus' from Professor Lupin which combats the frightening dementors who love nothing more than to suck out every last ounce of a person's soul and happiness. When in trouble, Harry conjures a powerful patronus to scatter a host of dementors.

Quidditch is the sport of choice at Hogwarts and Harry helps the Gryffindor team to victory. He also learns more about his family history, discovering who are enemies and who are friends to him.

Dumbledore sets the rules of Hogwarts and also relaxes them when the breaking of the rules (almost always by Harry, Ron and Hermione) are put into context by the Professor's sagacity. As always, Dumbledore steals the show at the end with his words of wisdom:

"You think the dead we have loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don't recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble? Your father is alive in you, Harry, and shows himself most plainly when you have need of him. How else could you produce that particular Patronus? . . . So you did see your father last night, Harry . . . you found him inside yourself."

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The second of J. K. Rowling's fantastic works, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is just as good a read as the first. She picks up from the first novel and continues the story, building on Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy, Gryffindor and Slytherin, and all of the other fascinating aspects of Hogwarts.

Though but little is written about Albus Dumbledore, the Principal of Hogwarts, he seems to be the calming influence of the story, a thoughtful character whose wise words inspire those who hear them despite the drama that unfolds around the school.

Near the end of this book, Dumbledore remarks, "It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."
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