More reviews! I have been reading. I’m not doing the best job of reviewing in a timely fashion. For that, lovely readers, I do apologize.
Is it better if I’m reading and reviewing sporadically, or not reading at all? I think the former. I am trying, though! I’ve been plugging along reading the Harry Potter series yet again. I wasn’t planning on reading a series like this until the end of the year if I needed page enhancers, but then I was feeling a little down and needed a comfort book. Bam, there was Harry and his friends, waiting to “welcome me home,” as Rowling would say.
And so, in between new books, I’m reading my old favorites. The ones that make me feel like everything is going to be okay – even in the face of the darkest odds. And with that…
REVIEW: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, JK Rowling
Published: 1998 (in the USA)
Plot: After his first year at the magical school Hogwarts, Harry Potter cannot wait to get back. But his plans go awry when a creature known as a house elf appears and gives him the stern warning not to go back to Hogwarts. Ignoring the warning, Harry returns for his second year to experience new teachers, new friends, and new challenges – including being blamed for a host of mysteriously petrified students. As Harry learns to navigate the rumors, whispers, and gaffes, he encounters his greatest threat yet.
Most Memorable Line(s):
I like posting pictures! It’s fun. I chose this line because it’s incredibly poignant, and it’s something many of us could do with remembering. My second choice was about Hermione always going to the library – either is fantastic, really.
What I liked: Again, everything! This book seamlessly and flawlessly carries on and captures the magic of the original. That’s not an easy feat in and of itself, either. I loved the way Rowling continued to delve into what it means to be a wizard. She highlights that the wizarding world is like the Muggle one – there are different classes, different kinds of people, and different viewpoints. We see that at the Burrow. Though small and cramped, Harry sees it’s full of love and believes it is a greater house than he’d lived in with the Dursely’s despite its size. Harry being exceptionally outcast for his Parseltongue capabilities was another great way to throw a wrench. Just how different could this poor boy be!? Honestly. Cut the 12-year-old a break. I love the way he handles this adversity, though. He leans on those who care for him (which is something he does not do later in the series). He asks for explanation as to why this might be a bad thing, and then he gets through it by making sure he’s near the people who will listen to and understand him. What a great lesson! Also, this book has the most beautiful images. I can perfectly picture the Chamber whenever they go down in that bathroom. And, finally, I love that Hermione figures out whats’ going on. Always the smartest in the room, she has a real purpose – even moreso than Ron in this book – to the story. While Harry does the heavy lifting, she’s the one behind the scenes, ensuring his victory.
What I didn’t like: As with Sorcerer, I don’t dislike anything about this book. Again, it’s the perfect length. It goes deeper into wizarding society – Knockturn Alley, anyone? – and it strengthens the bonds between our characters. Don’t worry, I’ll start having minor annoyances in the next book.