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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

The seventh and final novel in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter.

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No spoilers--just some, perhaps, sappy analysis and and a thank you

  • Jul 30, 2007
Rating:
+5
Pros: Story--if I say more I will undoubtedly spoil something

Cons: It was only 750 pages long, but that's probably not as bad as all that.

The Bottom Line: How do you bottom line the end of such a popular series?

I can’t think of a more difficult book to review. I am not typically a series reader—I’ve long been of the mind that if you cannot say it in one book, then pare it down or find another way to express what you want in one (I’ve believed this for most of my lifetime—not being a comic book reader I think poured the concrete of this idea). I have also spent most of my life as a literary snob. My friends joked about my faux-regal attitude when saying I would not deign to read children’s books. On a whim, I picked up a paperback copy of The Philosopher’s Stone, in 2001, and was so hooked that I bought it in hardback along with all books to Goblet of Fire. Normally a disciplined reader as far as pace is concerned, I went through all 1300 or so pages in 11 days. (I also have copies of one or more of the books in Czech, French, Bengali, and Chinese)

So how do you review any book in a series without going through the whole series to explain the events? The simple answer is that you don’t. This will have no spoilers in it, promise. No one who doesn’t want to be confused as if reading the last dozen pages of an Agatha Christie novel will bother to pick up The Deathly Hallows. You are either familiar with the whole series by way of books alone, books and movies, or movies and summaries from friends before reading the final book.

In brief, Harry, Ron, and Hermione do not go back to school in this book. They are on a quest that will lead them to the ultimate fight between Harry and Voldemort. This has been coming since The Philosopher’s Stone, so this gives nothing away. The triumvirate has disagreements over what method to take, but the methods bring them to the final battle. Before the end of the novel, we meet people from earlier novels in a way of tying up loose ends. As far as plot, no more need be said.

At first, I was with the group who were going to dread finishing the last novel because, like the interminable wait between books 4 and 5, it was going to leave us wanting more. I no longer want more. I want to expand, but leave that for a later time so I give nothing away.

The Deathly Hallows is what many of us expected from a maturity standpoint. What I noticed after reading the first 4 books so quickly is that the situations, sentence structure, and language aged with the principles. To the point where, I give nothing away with this since this is a review of the last book, there is kissing, a bit of foul language, and the death of a young man in The Goblet of Fire. This structure impressed me as much as the stories did. If this was planned, it was well planed, if it was an accident it was inspired one. In The Deathly Hallows, the language is rougher and it contains many S.A.T. words (I think most young adult writers, especially American writers, realize that they can slip rarer words into the work as an aid for the language sections of that test) and there is at least one open mouth kiss something that did not happen in earlier novels. The kids who were 11 when the first book was published are 26 now, so in many ways The Deathly Hallows is a doff of the hat to those very faithful (sometimes insanely so) readers.

It took me a full week to read the book because, unlike my pals, I wanted to savor it rather than swallow the meal whole, choke it back up and read it more carefully. Because of this, I had ample time to cry when the story called for it, and (to quote a friend of mine) there are plenty of times that require the slinging of snot unless you are just heartless.

The book is not perfect since there are some moments where Ms. Rowling seems to forget things that were important in earlier novels. Ordinarily this would chap my butt, but they were so minor that there was no need for chap-butt stick.

This is going to sound a bit silly, but please oblige me. There is only one person on the planet who understood Harry completely—and a vast number of readers, including kids, have pointed out inconsistencies throughout the books would argue that they understand him at least as well as the author. It is not uncommon for thoughtful readers of any book or series to understand things overlooked by the author. Ms. Rowling seems to understand all possible psychological expressions from her hero. This is refreshing even if it gives us literary critics less to examine.

I am happy to have had Harry, the Weasleys, Hermione, Dumbledore, Neville, and even Snape and the Malfoy’s in my life for 6 years. I look fondly on the time now and doubt I will change my mind or forget them. But Ms. Rowling knew what she was doing when she planned this out. I also hope she keeps to her promise not to continue to write. Unless she has found a way to bring back some the caliber of Shakespeare, I cannot imagine her able to match this series let alone top it. It is best to go out on top, like the British tend to do, than to muddy what she had written.

Thank you Ms. Rowling, rest well, be well, long life.

Recommended:
Yes

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More Harry Potter and the Deathly H... reviews
review by . August 31, 2011
I'd read all six of the Harry Potter series long ago, and yet I held off longer still to finally open the covers of the massive final volume in this remarkable series. For young adults, it's said, yet I wonder that just as many adults haven't delved into this magical tale of wizardry and a hero's quest. Who of us doesn't enjoy such grand storytelling of adventure and challenge met? I'd put it off, no doubt, because I didn't really want to be done with it, but curiosity finally reeled me in.    J …
review by . February 14, 2010
It was with Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Book 4) that I was hooked on Harry Potter, as J. K. Rowling's growing skill as a writer, her growing audience's growing maturity, and her ability to focus on a core of characters we cared about culminated in a series that had lasting power. Deathly Hallows captures "Year 7" and the end of the Hogwarts experience for Harry, Ron, and Hermione.     But this will be a year unlike any other! Harry, Ron, and Hermione, now outcasts in …
review by . June 22, 2010
***series spoilers below***      After years of preparing ourselves for the fate of boy-wizard Harry Potter, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the series’ final installment, offers enough suspense and surprise to keep us as entertained as its six predecessors. Dumbledore is dead, Death Eaters have overtaken the wizarding world, and Harry leaves number four, Privet Drive for the last time in a dangerous escape that costs the first of many lives. To make matters worse, …
review by . August 03, 2010
Being a Harry Potter Fan I Had to Read This Book, and I Simply Couldn't Put it Down.
          The last chapter in the Harry Potter book was fast paced, exciting, and held my attention. It also provided closure to the Harry Potter series for me. The reason I love The Deathly Hallows is because it never got boring for me. Page after page there was always something going on, even if it was the death of a few of my favorite characters. I also enjoyed how we got to see and learn more about Lord Voldemort or “He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named”.   …
review by . May 18, 2010
In my opinion, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" was an impressive end to my favorite book series of all time. When I originally read the first Harry Potter book I had my doubts as to whether I would even like the content. After all, it seemed like a book series aimed at children that produced a following of massive proportions and usually I did not want to participate in the thing that appealed so greatly with the masses. However, I was greatly mistaken. I thoroughly …
Quick Tip by . October 08, 2010
   Great finish to the Harry Potter series.  It is quite different with pretty much no Hogwarts making it a fresh finish to the series.
review by . July 14, 2010
   I didn't start reading the Harry Potter books until shortly before this book was published.  In some ways I consider myself lucky, as I didn't have to wait around to find out what was going to happen; however,  I also feel that I had cheated myself by missing out on the whole Harry Potter craze.   I had dismissed this wonderful series as being juvenile. I was so incredibly wrong!   The last novel of the series, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" …
review by . June 17, 2010
Every decade or so a book--or in this case, a series of books--comes along that for some reason gains incredible popularity and inspires a generation to read, write and talk about. Harry Potter is that series for my generation. Having read the first book and fallen in love with Harry Potter when J.K. Rowling was still an unknown author, after ten years to see the series come to an end was a bittersweet event. I had grown up with Harry quite literally. As luck would have it I was usually the same …
review by . May 18, 2010
What was your emotional reaction as you read? Why?   As I read I thought that I felt sad the entire time. To know that this was the end of the series, I was heartbroken that there was not another to look forward to.      Who would you recommend this reading to and why?   I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone who has read the others, or even to anyone who hasn't read any; although I suggest they start with number one.      Consider …
review by . June 21, 2010
    I would recommend this book series. This is the last Harry Potter book, and is full of action. Harry, Ron and Hermione skip their last year of school to go hunting for Horcruxes. Horcruxes are made when you murder, and they are hunting the remaining of the seven Horcruxes of Voldemort. While hunting them, they discover the Hallows. There are three, the resurrection stone, the Elder Wand, and the Invisibility Cloak. The Cloak is already in Harry's possession, and …
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Paul Savage ()
Ranked #57
I name and describe everything and classify most things. If 'it' already had a name, the one I just gave it is better.
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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
is the seventh and final of the Harry Potter novels written by British author J. K. Rowling. The book was released on 21 July 2007, ending the series that began in 1997 with the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. This book chronicles the events directly following Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2005), and leads to the long-awaited final confrontation between Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was published in the United Kingdom by Bloomsbury Publishing, in the United States by Scholastic, in Canada by Raincoast Books, and in Australia and New Zealand by Allen & Unwin. Released globally in ninety-three countries, Deathly Hallows broke sales records as the fastest-selling book ever. It sold 15 million copies in the first twenty-four hours following its release,[1] including more than 11 million in the U.S. and U.K. alone. The previous record, nine million in its first day, had been held by Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.[2] The novel has also been translated into numerous languages, including Ukrainian,[3] Swedish,[4] Polish[5] and Hindi.[6]

Several awards were given to the novel, including the 2008 Colorado Blue Spruce Book Award, and it was listed as a "Best Book for Young Adults" by the American Library Association.[7] Reception to the book was generally positive, although some reviewers found the characters to be repetitive or unchanging. A ...

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Tags

Books, Cafe Libri, Fantasy, Childrens Books, Harry Potter, Magic, Harry Potter Book, J K Rowling

Details

ISBN-10: 0545010225
ISBN-13: 978-0545010221
Author: J. K. Rowling
Genre: Children's Books, Fantasy
Publisher: Scholastic, Arthur A. Levine Books
Format: Novel
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