Thursday, July 16, 2009

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Recently re-read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in preparation for the movie. Side note: tried to convince husband to dress us as Mr. and Mrs. Weasley with me but prospect does not look good. It's sad.

Harry Potter fans will have read The Half-Blood Prince back in 2005 right after it was released, so I'm not going to worry to much about spoilers. Rowling's 600 page book, the 6th in the series, did not disappoint. I loved the role that Dumbledore played in this one, becoming more and more of a peer to Harry and so respectful of his friendship with Hermione and Ron! My fave part was probably where Dumbledore goes to retrieve Harry from the Dursleys - when the Dursley's greet him with their regular behavior:
'Judging by your look of stunned disbelief, Harry did not warn you that I was coming,' said Dumbledore pleasantly 'However, let us assume that you have invited me warmingly into your house. It is unwise to linger overlong on doorsteps in these troubled times.

He stepped smartly over the threshold and close the front door behind him.

'It is a long time since my last visit,' said Dumbledore, peering down his crooked nose at Uncle Vernon. 'I must say, your agapanthuses are flourishing.'

Agapanthuses? Hilarious!
'I don't mean to be rude -' he began, in a tone that threatened rudeness in every syllable.

'-yet, sadly, accidental rudeness occurs alarmingly often,' Dumbledore finished the sentence gravely. 'Best to say nothing at all, my dear man. Ah, and this must be Petunia.

Just like Dumbledore is Harry's stand-in for the perfect parent/grandparent, I found myself wishing he was my guardian too, swooping in and giving the old what for to my proverbial Dursleys.

I remember (the first time) reading the book and being so surprised by the ending - and then the rather wonderful thrill of asking everyone - have you finished yet? - so that you might quietly talk about whether you thought Snape was truly on the dark side or not. Everyone was so respectful (with the exception of this jackhole) of other fans' experiences. I miss the fun of like, the whole world reading the same book - I hope we see something similar again one day!

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