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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - J. K. Rowling

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    106 Reviews
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      04.06.2013 16:45
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      Great sequel to the Philosophers Stone

      It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are,far more than our abilities.'

      THE PLOT

      Harry has been looking forward to returning to School all Summer, after months of putting up with his not so loving family. But just before term is due to start, a strange creature named Dobby appears in Harry's room, and brings with him a warning; That if Harry returns of Hogwarts this year, he will be in grave danger.

      But Harry loves School, and returns to Hogwarts anyway, despite Dobby's attempts to keep him away. However, Dobby's warning proves to be true, when a mysterious monster starts to attack the students. But it's only a certain type of Student that is being targeted, and Harry and his friends must seek to solve the mystery, before any other students are attacked, or risk the School being closed for good.

      MY OPINION

      This is the second book in the Harry Potter Series and one that will always stay with me. In the first book, the friendship between Harry, Ron and Hermione started to blossom, but in this book the bond between them grows and their friendships become concrete. Although Harry is the main character, his friends are equally as important, and without them he wouldn't survive. The bond, for me is incredibly important to the story, is makes it even more enjoyable to read, since despite the horrors that are occurring, their friendship stays strong, and keeps their faith alive.

      THE AUTHOR

      J.K Rowling has delivered another fantastic story with this book. She has continued the story of Harry and his friends fantastically, and I couldn't ask for a better sequel to The Philosophers Stone.

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      12.03.2013 14:45
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      A second outing for Potter, which is just as good as book one.

      Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a childrens novel written by author J.K. Rowling, and published in 1998, making this quite an old book nowadays, but still incredibly popular. I have recently been re-reading the whole set of Potter books as I find them quite easy going as I know the plot now so well. This is the 2nd book of the series of 7, and still as good to me as the first time that I read it over a decade ago.

      Harry Potter is a pupil at Hogwarts school of Wizardry. He is a little different to the other pupils as he is an orphan, and he has also battled with the most powerful wizard in all history, Lord Voldemort, and has survived.

      In this second installment, Harry is about to start his second year at Hogwarts. We join him in the summer holidays, where he is living with his Aunt and Uncle and their son. The family are awful to Harry, and there is an unfortunate incident where Harry has a visitor to the house in the form of a house elf who causes an embarassing incident for the Dursleys.

      Dobby the Elf is trying to stop Harry returning to Hogwarts as he says there will be great danger for him. However, Harry ignores Dobby, and then finds there is a mysterious monster in the castle and any person who sees it is petrified and put into a coma. The only way to stop this happening and for everyone to be safe is if someone discovers where the chamber of secrets is before someone is actually killed. Harry is helped in his quest by an old diary written by the Head Boy, Tom Riddle some fifty years ago.

      After the first installment of Harry's life, I was keen for more. The first time I read these novels I found myself devouring the novel in one sitting. Nowadays I can restrain myself a bit better and read at a slower pace.

      Harry's world is created very well by J.K. Rowling. Every novel in the series brings in new characters and settings, so the world expands from what you knew before. Here, we meet a new breed of creature, the house elves, and Harry also gets to visit his friend Ron Weasley's house for the first time. We also get to return to the wizards shopping precinct - Diagon Alley, and get to see a new method of travel by floo powder.

      Rowling amazes me with all her new nouns to describe the amazing places she so painstakingly creates, and the words are now so well known in society through the books and the corresponding films.

      Items that are seen such as the giant Basilisk and Aragog are similar enough to creatures that we see in real life, that it is possible to really create a good visual picture in your mind of the things that Rowling is describing.

      I love how this novel sees more of Ron's family who are a bit eccentric but a really loveable bunch of characters who continue to become more important throughout the series.

      When you have read all of the novels, you start to see Rowling putting in parts to the plot which will be highly relevant later on in the series, such as telling us for the first time about the Whomping Willow tree, and I also found there were very clear hints at where the plot was going to go from having knowledge of the ending which I had missed my first read through. If this were an adult book, I would feel disappointed by the hints, but as it is really meant for children, I think they are entirely appropriate to help the child figure out the meaning of the story.

      As an adult, I have no problem reading this story. My eldest son is 6, and could physically read it in terms of vocabulary used, but this is a bit too long and laboursome for him to tackle alone just yet. At 251 pages, I feel it is more suited for children who are towards the end of primary school and competent readers. The story is not too scarey for my son as he has seen it in film format, but the print size and length of the book along with lack of pictures leads me to this conclusion.

      I think the Harry Potter series is best off read in order to help you fully see the big picture within the plot, and I think it will be popular for many more years to come. Rowling has skillfully engaged her readers to want to connect with these books, and they are something I find I can read over and over again and still be captivated by them.

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        04.09.2012 16:25
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        More magic and mayhem at Hogwarts after some splendid antics with the Dursleys

        Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

        Why read this one...

        First off my daughter has been foisting these upon me for many months and secondly Stephen King endorsed them - well that did it for me as I know how much he likes an author to stick to the story. Having read and thoroughly enjoyed the first book - Harry Potter and the Philosophers stone - I was eager to get my hands on this one.

        Short synopsis...

        It is time to return to Hogwarts School of witchcraft and wizardry and for Harry this cannot come soon enough - he has stayed with his aunt and uncle again and it is never a pleasant experience. It will soon become apparent that some strange force is at work and he is being prevented from returning to school. When he finally manages to arrive at school he will be in for some shocking surprises and a mystery will tempt him to investigate further. Random attacks cause fear and unrest among the students and the finger of suspicion will be placed firmly on Harry...until one personal attack makes it clear that Potter is not responsible. The school is at risk of being closed down due to the continued attacks and then it gets very personal and Mr Potter takes action......

        Hogwarts express...

        First off I will tell you that I have seen the movie that was based on this book. I enjoyed it but soon forgot about it. Having read this book I feel that I want to see the movie again to see the characters brought to life and enjoy more insight than I did first time around. As is often found, there is much more in the prose than you can ever experience in the film.

        The tale begins, once again, with life at the Dursley's (Harry's aunt and uncle...oh and his cousin, Dudley) and as I enjoyed the wit and humour that this concept presented in the first book I was pleased to begin with them. Once again we see Harry being made to feel as worthless and unloved as is humanly possible. You get a clear message from these relatives that it would please them most if they never saw Harry ever again....ever! I really enjoy the rivalry between Dudley and Harry, the chubby, mollycoddled young bully boy will push his luck at every opportunity but Harry will always have the upper hand now and cannot resist a little tormenting of his own when they are out of sight. It is laugh out loud funny. This time around Harry is hidden away from special visitors and must stay like a church mouse in his room - he is a miserable prisoner and it looks like he will be prevented from returning to Hogwarts until a valiant rescue by his good friend Ron Weasley. A tantalising and imaginative piece of writing awaits and the pages turned quickly.

        All will not be smooth running for Harry and Ron on their return to school. After a comfortable stay for Harry at the Wesley's - and some fond admiring looks from Ginny who is Ron's young sister (I totally missed this concept in all the early movies!) - they will have to make their own way to school and end up having quite an adventure high above the train. I was captivated and intrigued - it didn't make sense that they wouldn't be able to get through the supernatural gateway to the platform at the train station and though I knew that someone was trying to stop Harry from returning to school it never occurred to me during this chapter who it might be. It had me guessing and this was the start of the prose so I had some time to ponder this little mystery.

        I totally loved the bumpy landing and resulting mayhem that the boys encountered when they arrived at Hogwarts. It was very fitting and funny, whilst at the same time it had me holding my breath to see how things turned out. Rowling excels in these scary though funny episodes.

        As the students settle back into life at school I am getting to know the main characters all the better and they too are settling into strong friendships. I was oblivious to the growing feelings between Ron and Hermione in the movies and remember thinking that it would be Harry that she fell for! The prose tells so much more and the little hints are there. I am really getting to know Harry now and I'm finding him easy to like. He has great courage and a sense of what is right, though he can be rash at times too which makes him more real. Ron is Ron and without him and his clumsy demeanour and less courageous traits the book would be seriously lacking - he is very likeable. Hermione is growing in my affections too, she is the sensible one of the three but she is now breaking rules when the situation demands it and has the courage of a lioness. Ron's younger sister, Ginny, is now a student and from reading the book I learn just how much this redheaded youngster likes Harry...if he ever found her diary it would cause her many blushes!

        As you would expect it is not long before some dark doings begin at Hogwarts and I am wondering if the attack on Harry during a Quiddich match has anything to do with it. There are so many villains to choose from and I'm guessing at Draco Malfoy, his father or Professor Snape maybe? In his hospital bed Harry will discover who put his life at risk....it is a shock for him and for me...I didn't see that coming.

        After Harry has been heard speaking parsletongue (to snakes) some students are quick to turn against him and accuse him of being the person who is attacking students and petrifying them - the hospital is filling up and Professor Dumbledore is growing increasingly concerned - though he doesn't think Harry had anything to do with it. Harry sees his good friend Hagrid blamed for it and he is taken to wizard prison. Things are becoming bleak and the attacks continue. I am all over the place from one suspect to another - I really do not know (or remember from the movie) who it is!

        Deep in the forbidden forest Harry and Ron will come face to face with Aragog - when I saw the name at the beginning of the chapter I thought it was a forest dwelling man as I had forgotten this bit too from the movie. After a heated and suspenseful run up to this meeting I was most surprised and horrified by Aragog. This meeting has tension and fear running through it and I was wondering how on earth it was going to end....I was guessing that Hagrid would be the saviour but once again Rowling has something special and a little crazy up her sleeve - it works very well.

        There is a lot to come after this and Harry will be tested to the extremes. The pages turn fast as he faces danger and learns the answer to the mystery. He will be disarmed and vulnerable but through all he will remain loyal to his beliefs - this will prove to be all the strength he needs in a life or death confrontation.
        I can tell you that the outcome is very satisfactory and Rowling has done it again...left me eager to begin the next book.

        Rowling sticks to the story and crafts it masterfully - it is a treat, a comfort read and one which I would likely read again. Children and adults alike will enjoy this tale.
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        RRP £5.99
        Star Rating....

        FIVE
        Recommended reading...

        It is a solid five stars from me. Having read the first instalment and knowing that Rowling sticks to the story, without being tempted to go off on tangents, I was eager to read this tale. I was not disappointed. First off there is the superb wit and humour that lights the pages up when we begin at the Dursley's. Life for Harry is miserable as he suffers at the hands of his horrible relatives ... but he has his fun when he and Dudley are alone and it is such fun to read. Back with a bump at Hogwarts the term begins and all seems reasonably normal barring the odd attack on Harry...strange times that had me bewildered. Dark times begin soon enough and danger is around most of the peculiar corners. The usual villain's play their roles well and I particularly like the way Draco Malfoy is developing into a real prima donna dark lord ... he is nasty but it is funny. My favourite, Hagrid, makes an appearance and I find him utterly fascinating - big heart, big man and big pets! As the mystery of the attacks rolls on I am turning pages faster, though I am digesting all the words as this is a wonderful piece of writing, I want to know the outcome and as I care about the characters of Ron, Harry, Hermione and Hagrid I don't want to stop. Once again I feel like this is a real comfort read - a treat - and I sink deep into my chair as I read. A dramatic ending ties up all that needs to be tied up and is satisfying. All set up for the next book now and eager to read it.

        Published on Ciao

        ©Dawnymarie

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          02.10.2011 04:01

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          The book series is amazing, no other author could top it!

          First of all I must say that honestly, in all my years of reading books (which is not many, to be honest!) I haven't come across a series of books better than Harry Potter. They are so well thought out that it's like witches and wizards and Hogwarts are all actually real.

          Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is book two is the famous series. Harry Potter is warned by Dobby the house elf not to go back to Hogwarts, for Harry will be in 'mortal danger' (said Dobby) if he does go back. There is a plot to make terrible things happen at Hogwarts. But Harry ignores Dobby's warning and goes back to Hogwarts to start his second year. But soon, strange things start to happen. Students are being 'petrified', but no one knows who or what has been petrifying these students. Some people think that Harry himself is doing it.
          Soon Harry realizes that it's only Muggle borns that are being attacked. And when Hermione gets attacked, Harry finds out from the piece of paper Hermione is holding that the thing that is attacking students is a Basilisk; a giant snake. Harry, Ron and Professor Lockhart go down into the Chamber of Secrets and Harry battles the Basilisk with the Sword of Godric Gryffindor, and soon kills the Basilisk.

          It's like JK Rowling is a Hogwarts graduate herself, for she has created such an amazing, imaginative, engaging and suspenseful world that is completely and utterly magical. She used such interesting words, and the book isn't plain and boring. Say a kid knew the exact plot of what happens in this book, and wrote it in their own words; yes, the ideas would be good, but the language wouldn't be that good. But Rowling has used such good language that it makes it even more interesting.

          And still, in 2011, I read this book, and I will never get tired of it! If you haven't got it then I suggest you buy it. And if you haven't read any of the Harry Potter series then you need to get reading!

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          22.08.2011 16:12
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          Ignoring the creepy feeling I get, this is a brilliant book

          Well I have finally gotten past the first Harry Potter book (not for the first time I hasten to add!), so it's time to review book number two! I can remember getting this book at the same time as the first one, and being so frustrated when I actually had to wait for the third book. I can remember being a little creeped out by this book, but I was young(er) and it shall be explained why shortly.

          So a quick re-cap of the events before the Chamber of Secrets, just in case you wanted to know: Harry Potter is a boy that until his eleventh birthday was raised (well, bullied) by his aunt, uncle and cousin. After his eleventh birthday, Harry is a wizard, attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft & Wizardry. Not only is he a wizard, but he is a famous one as he survived and managed to somehow severely weaken a dark wizard named Voldemort, who had successfully managed to kill many witches, wizards and non-magic folk, including Harry's parents. So along with the making of friends (Ron and Hermione especially), playing sports (Quidditch) and attending lessons, Harry had an adventure battling trolls, three headed dogs and dark wizards. With Voldemort thwarted once again, will Harry's second year be a bit more peaceful? Or is the whispering voice that only Harry can hear the prelude to even stranger and perhaps even deadlier happenings?

          Second book in and JK Rowling doesn't let the book lose the feeling that it has the elements and makings of a classic adventure/fantasy story. I wouldn't say that the Chamber of Secrets is a book to rival the other classics, such as the Chronicles of Narnia, as it is its own world, and completely own story. Yes there are times that you can see similarities between other books, but that could be just sheer coincidence (or the best way to make characters/creatures as creepy as possible). And this book definitely has the power to make the reader jump (in my opinion, that's always good, as long as it's not too often and not too big a jump!). In this case, all I need say is giant spiders the size of cars and bigger and I'm sure many of you will agree that that's enough to send shivers down your spine no matter your age.

          The writing style, as you would expect, has stayed the same; not too complex but enough to keep you reading to the next chapter, and enough mystery to keep you guessing, and to keep the surprises coming even until the final stand-off. Both books follow the same pattern - summer holidays, school year, leading to climatic ending before next summer holidays. But, unlike with other books I have read, the climatic ending isn't too rushed, and you don't feel like you've spent ages reading the book and been cheated - it's a very satisfactory end to a darn good read. As with the first book, the ending of Chamber of Secrets is wrapped up nicely so that you wouldn't be left with a cliff-hanger if no more were published. The story is so well written, however, that it leaves you wanting more - so thank goodness JK Rowling decided to carry on to year 3 and beyond!

          The characters we met in the first book that aren't the main three characters (Harry, Ron and Hermione) begin to become even more well-formed, their stories develop and even the school itself becomes even more detailed and alive, giving you an even more intricate idea of the school and the people Harry interacts with. New characters are also introduced, mainly annoying but likeable - and some aren't even human (got you interested yet?). There are some that do irritate me, due to their pompous and perhaps narrow-minded attitude - but then again, from their point of view they were reacting in the most appropriate way; from the point of view of someone who knows the entire story, they were really irritating (but not enough to make me stop reading the book; just enough to make me skim read their bit whenever I re-read Chamber of Secrets). My favourite character that was introduced is Dobby the house-elf. I won't give too much away but he is a kind-hearted little creature, who wants to help Harry and save him from the bad things happening in Hogwarts - problem is, Dobby's attempts to save Harry usually end up with worse consequences! I never loved Dobby in the films as much as Dobby in the books, as I felt a little let down by their interpretation; but in the books, he is a firm favourite of mine within a few sentences!

          I found Chamber of Secrets quite a creepy book. Compared to the Philosopher's Stone, it somehow felt a lot darker and more eerie, and although later books have much darker storylines, this one always has the power to creep me out. Then again, it does deal with some creepy (and ridiculously big creatures). This did not stop me reading the book again and again, or wanting more books, so it obviously wasn't too creepy! I think I read this when I was about 9, and think it should be suitable for children (and adults) over that age - or younger ones that are less easily creeped out than myself!

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            31.07.2011 17:23
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            A part of a really brilliant series!

            While it's not necessarily my favourite book in the Harry Potter series I still think that The Chamber Of Secrets is definitely essential to the series as a whole. Also, new and interesting characters are introduced such as the well meaning but also quite troublesome Dobby the house elf and the new Defense Against The Dark Arts teacher, Gilderoy Lockhart, who's vanity, stupidity and self-importance is both cringe-worthy and amusing.

            The second book in a series of seven, it focuses on Harry Potter's second year at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As usual, Harry and his friends seem to attract nothing but mischief. Harry and his best friend Ron must fly a Ford Anglia to school after missing the Hogwarts Express which ensures that they are already in trouble from the very beginning of the school year as they are seen by various muggles (non-wizarding folk).

            The story focuses mostly upon the Chamber of Secrets, as the title suggests, which was created by the founder of Slytherin, one of the four Hogwarts houses. The chamber contains a monster which has been set loose within the castle, petrifying all those who see it and the blame is initially laid at Harry's feet.

            The novel contains some comical moments which only add to the appeal of the novel such as the fact that the Mandrakes, magical plants which can be used to re-awaken all those that have been petrified, have a loud party in greenhouse three.

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              19.12.2010 15:38

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              A magical read

              This is the second book in the Harry Potter series and there is certainly no drop in quality from J.K. Rowling. This second book is every bit as good as the first and continues in combining great adventure with great laughs.

              This time following a horrible summer in Privet Drive Harry returns to Hogwarts for his second year at the magical school. Once again it's a year filled with magic and adventure as Harry and his friends continue their lessons in Charms, Herbology, Defence against the Dark Arts and much more, while trying to find out who is behind the attacks on students at the school, leaving even Harry questioning who he really is.

              In this book we are introduced to some new characters including Dobby and Professor Lockhart while at the same time we get to know some of the existing characters a little better. The events in this book tie in with some important events in later Harry Potter books and once again the legend of Voldermort is ever present.

              I have heard this second part of the series described by some as their least favourite but I'm not sure why. As with 'Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone' this is not as dark or dramatic as some later instalments in the series but it packed with great characters and amazing magic. Once again J.K. Rowling has created an enchanting story packed with excitement and adventure that makes you want to keep turning the pages and leaves you disappointed when it is finished.

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              23.09.2010 07:42
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              See review.

              After reading the first in the series, and thoroughly enjoying it, I knew I had to get stuck into the second in line, though film wise this was my least favourite so far!

              The book I will now review is - "Harry Potter and the chamber of secrets by J.K. Rowling".

              It's nearly Harry's 12th birthday, and nearly the second term at his beloved Hogwarts school of magic, but until then he is stuck with his auntie and uncle, who want nothing to do with him and seem to go out of their way to be cruel to him, just because he was born to a witch and a wizard (his auntie's sister!).

              After being threatened to be quiet and not leave his room by his uncle ( he has his boss coming to dinner!), he find himself faced with a mischievous house elf called Dobby, and though he says he is here to protect Harry from something that wishes to harm him at Hogwarts, he is going out of his way to cause trouble for Harry, getting him locked up in his bedroom after dropping a pudding on his auntie Pertunia's head!

              After having to be rescued from his now locked and window barred room by his best friend Ron, he finally finds himself on his way back to school, though is now worrying about Dobby's warning, then when people start being found petrified and looking like stone, it seem's Dobby knows something he doesn't!

              Will Harry make it through the term?

              I have to say I enjoyed this book nearly as much as the first, though with the film being my least favourite I still just wanted to get through it so I could move onto the next one, but did find myself starting to enjoy it.

              There are all the original characters back again, with a few "newbies" including Dobby the house elf, who is naughty and extremely funny to read about and the new "defence against the dark arts" teacher Lockheart, who seems to talk the talk, but has no real useful magic to offer, with my favourite bit being where Harry has his arm smashed with a rogue bludger ( a ball that has been bewitched to try and knock Quidditch payers from their brooms), Lockheart insists that he can fix Harry in a heartbeat. But ends up making his bone disappear then having to have it regrown in the school hospital!

              This book is of course written for children, with us adults trying to get a bit of the action too! So there is no real bad language or sexual content, but more innocent friend feelings, plenty of magic and a really funny storyline to boot, recommended!

              Price wise these are available from www.amazon.co.uk for around the £2.99 mark.

              I recommend this hugely, with my 9 year old daughter now working her way through the series too!

              Thanks for reading x

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                23.08.2010 17:36
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                A good read but not J.K.'s best

                This book is the second instalment in the series that follows the young boy Harry as he grows into a wizard, in a world where he was a celebrity in without even knowing it existed.

                The Plot:
                After missing the train at platform 9 ¾ thanks to some mischievous house elf, Harry and his friend Ron Weasley crash land at their school for witchcraft and wizardry; Hogwarts.

                This year looks set to be as terrifyingly dangerous for the daring wizard and his friends as their first with the Dark Lord 'He-who-must-not-be-named' Voldemort (oops) determined to seek his revenge on the young wizard who as a baby was the only one able to defeat him.

                As the walls start whispering to him is Harry starting to go mad? Or are there even darker secrets contained within the magical school? And is it Ginny's, Ron's little sister's, sanity everyone should be watching out for? Who is Tom Riddle? And what is the significance of his diary? Harry and his friends, Ron and Hermione, team up again to try to save the wizarding world from the most evil warlock attempting a comeback.


                My Opinion:
                Although there may be something a bit cliché about a young orphan going on adventures and saving the world, this is still definitely a thrilling read as J.K. (Joanne) Rowling certainly has the knack for writing a page
                turner.

                Rowling has boundless imagination, coming up with spells like 'Transmogrifian Torture' and potions like polyjuice potion that can make you look, smell and talk like someone else.

                Even without the magic the book is still exciting, with all the rule breaking, and then of course there is quidditch; a wizards sport played between the houses, which gives light entertainment and rivalry from the threat of he-who-must-not-be-named and Slytherin's heir.

                I liked that we started to learn a little more about You-Know-Who's past as Rowling gives the reader little snippets of information to piece together along the way through the series. We are also introduced to the secret world of the house elves by the charming little creature Dobbie, in this way we learn more about the culture and traditions of wizards.


                The Trio: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger
                Harry is famous for surviving an attack by He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named when he was a baby. Although not the best at magical knowledge, he is brave and very skilled at defence against the dark arts.

                Ron is his best friend who he meets with his family at Platform 9 3/4. Although grumpy at times Ron is a good friend and often Harry wouldn't have succeeded without his. His family is Harry's honorary family.

                Hermione is a little geek. She is the top of every class and always has her head stuck in a book. She is a good friend and the brains of the operation.


                The Author: J.K. Rowling
                She first came up with the idea for Harry Potter whilst travelling on a train from Manchester to London in 1990. There have been more than 400 million copies of Harry Potter books sold and there are now films based on the books.

                Thanks to the series J.K. Rowling has gone from living on welfare to being a multi-millionaire in the space of five years and in 2008 the Sunday Times placed her as the twelfth most wealthy women in Britain.

                She puts some of that money to good use supporting many charities, including Comic Relief, One Parent Families and Multiple Sclerosis of Great Britain. For these efforts she was placed as runner up for Time Magazine's Person of the Year Award in 2007. Rowling has also received an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire).


                This may not be the best book in the series, as it is an in between book following on from Harry's introduction to this magical world and slowly building up to the climax you feel is coming the seventh book, but it is still worth a read.

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                  20.08.2010 10:49
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                  Not the best in the series, but still great fun

                  Harry has had a miserable summer. None of his friends have written to him and he wonders whether Hogwarts and the world of wizardry that he discovered the year before is just a dream. Four weeks before he is due to return to school he has a visit from Dobby the House Elf who warns him away from returning to Hogwarts. And so we embark on another year at Hogwarts and another mystery - this time involving the Chamber of Secrets, of the title.

                  I still thoroughly enjoyed this book, but not quite as much as the first. The main reason for this was the clumsy need to recap that Rowling displayed. The worst instance was when Colin and Harry are walking to the Quidditch pitch and Harry has to explain how it all works - it isn't completely unforgiveable since Colin has only just started at Hogwarts, but I felt it was superfluous nonetheless, and this was not the only instance.

                  My other reason for the half star being dropped was Gilderoy Lockhart, a very tiresome character who boasts constantly about his achievements. I can see how some people might regard him as humourous but I begrudged any of his 'screentime' and wished he hadn't been introduced.

                  In this book the fright factor is increased. There is a spine chilling scene in the Forbidden Forest, especially if you are not that fond of spiders, and I still have nerves when Harry faces off against Tom Riddle and he reveals who he actually is. Some younger readers might well be scared by some of the moments in this story.

                  Once again, the characters are fleshed out fantastically, even minor characters such as Lee Jordan (who commentates the Quidditch matches in a very entertaining manner). All of them are extremely memorable and, even in just this second book of the series, very familiar to the reader. It is a tribute to Rowling's writing of these characters that I never mix up my Professor Sprout with my Professor Flitwick - each of the people who roam the wizarding world have their own characteristics and personalities.

                  The little details also charmed me. I love the fact that the students have to turn in essays of a certain length in inches on their rolled parchment, rather than word count or pages. I enjoy the Dickensian element of the story - the quills for writing, the clothes and robes. The descriptions of the feasts are unbelievable - they make you wish you could be transported to eat there.

                  This is not my favourite of the seven in the series for reasons detailed above, but it is still a great read!

                  This review has been posted to Floor to Ceiling Books

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                  04.08.2010 13:59
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                  Brilliant sequel

                  Harry Potter is about to start his second year at Hogwarts School and Witchcraft and Wizardry, and his summer holidays are looking gloomy. With none of his friends' contacting him and his own own locked up (by order of his horrible Uncle Vernon) he's not having a good time at all. To make things worse, Dobby, a house elf, appears in his room and tells him not to come back to Hogwarts as danger is lurking there. Help comes, in the shape of Ron and his brothers in a flying car as they break Harry out of Privet Drive and back into the wizarding world.

                  But Dobby was right. There is a danger at Hogwarts, and the mysterious "Chamber of Secrets" has been opened again and the Heir of Slytherin (whoever he may be) attacking students, it's up to the Boy who Lived and his friends to find out the deep, dark secrets of Hogwarts and save the day again.

                  ---

                  The second book in the series is a fantastic follow up to the first, upping the excitement, humour and unexpected twists from the last time. Now that we've been introduced to the wizarding world J K Rowling can go into more depth, such as the four founders of Hogwarts - whose stories hadn't really been touched upon in the first book.

                  We also get more information on the dark wizard harry defeated when he was a baby, Voldemort. Here we get a bit more an understanding of who he was before he became Voldemort, which plays an incredibly big role later on.

                  Like tradition will dictate ion later books, there's a new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher - this time around it's local heartthrob Gilderoy Lockheart - a man who claims to have done all kinds of amazing feats of magic, traveling the world and ridding it of all kinds of evils, which he then puts into his many books. I didn't quite like him at first, that was kind of the point, but now I see the appeal in the character and he's not as bad as all that.

                  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is, like the first book, filled with magic and imagination, finding the perfect mix between light heartedness and threat, making sure it isn't too funny, but too tense either. A great sequel to the first, and perfect for children and adults alike

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                  06.06.2010 15:00
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                  definitely recommend. A fantastic book for all young readers

                  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is the second book in the Harry Potter series. It tells the story of Harry's second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
                  The Sunday Times called this book 'An absolutely must have read of the year', and The Independent on Saturday stated 'I have yet to meet a ten-year-old who hasn't been entranced by its witty, complex plot and the character of the eponymous Harry'.
                  I completely agree, I think this book really does have a witty, complex plot and it is definitely a must have read of the year that it came out.

                  I was about eleven years old when I first read this book. I read all the books in order, so this one was the second one that I read. At the time I remember chatting about this book with my friends in school. None of us could get enough of the Harry Potter series. I remember us all talking about it, who our favourite characters were, what we thought was going to happen next, what would the films be like. It seemed so magical and fantastic. Once I started reading this, I could not put it down. I think its probably the Harry Potter books that made me want to read more in future. For young readers between the ages of nine and twelve this book really is an excellent choice of read.

                  The book starts out with Harry's birthday. He is living with his aunt and uncle, Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia, and his mean, chubby cousin, Dudley. Living with them has always been really hard for Harry. He can't live with his own parents because as he discovers in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, they were killed trying to save him from Voldemort, the most evil wizard in the magical word, when Harry was just a small baby. And Vernon, Petunia and Dudley make it more than clear that they don't like him there.
                  The only place that really feels like home to Harry is his school, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. To him his only real family feels like his two best friends, Ron and Hermione, and Ron's family, the Weasley family. So at the start of this book when Harry thinks they have forgotten all about him, because they haven't written to him all holiday, he feels even more alone than usual.

                  There is so much that happens in this book and it really is a fantasy adventure novel. It is so exciting for young readers and honestly they won't be able to put it down. This was my absolute favourite book when I was younger and even now I think I would still enjoy reading it. It is seriously good stuff and I definitely recommend it.

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                  03.06.2010 11:07

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                  A great read!

                  This is the second book of J.K. Rowling's famous Harry Potter series, and a thoroughly enjoyable read. However, I must admit this was by far my least favourite Harry Potter book until recently - as a child there was something I really didn't like about it. (It is still my least favourite book of the seven, but only by a little bit.)

                  The novel is full of Rowling's captivating style of writing, her characters are painted clearly, and the introduction of Dobby, a house-elf, is a most welcome one - he turns out to be a most important character in the later books! Harry comes face to face with a much greater danger than in the previous book at the end of his second year at Hogwarts, and again this is something that is made more clear later in the series. It really is a brilliant book, and one that can be read again and again.

                  However, the one thing that always annoyed me was Gilderoy Lockhart, the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher. Yes, we're not meant to like him as a person, but I found him annoying as a character, and sometimes a little cringe-worthy. Although in recent years I have started to embrace these facets of Lockhart's character, it did make this book really annoy me as a child - once, when re-reading the series, I even skipped the second book because I simply did not want to read it.

                  Having said that, everything else about this book is of top-notch quality - the descriptions of Harry and his friends, their adventures, the Forbidden Forest, the Quidditch matches, and especially the storyline about the school's mysterious would-be killer. Unfortunately, Gilderoy Lockhart takes one star off my review of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, but for everything else about the book, a whole-hearted four stars!

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                  30.03.2010 14:06
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                  What lies beneath the Hogwarts school of witchcraft and wizardry.

                  The chamber of secrets is the second installment of J.K.Rowling's Harry Potter series, and follows the students in their second year of Hogwarts school of witchcraft and wizardry.

                  The Plot -

                  After a hellish break at home with the Dursley's, Harry finally escapes with the help of best friend Ron Weasley and his twin brothers Fred and George.

                  Life doesn't get easier for Harry as in a mysterious turn of events, him and Ron find themselves unable to get access to the Hogwarts Express platform and they decide that instead of getting into trouble they will fly mr Weasley's car to Hogwarts. But sadly for the duo the first person they encounter on their return to Hogwarts is none other than their evil potions master Professor Snape.

                  After the excitement of their return to Hogwarts turns to dread over the work that is in front of them this year, the students suddenly have more things to worry about than end of year exams as Mrs Norris the cat belonging to caretaker Argus Filch is found petrified.

                  Mrs Norris is only the first in a line of victims, which start to include both students and a Hogwarts ghost. These attacks are linked to a fifty year old legend about a chamber buried deep beneath the school.

                  The chamber of secrets is said to house a beast of such horror that noone speaks of it, legend has it the only person to control it was one of the school founders Salazar Slytherin, and only himself or one of his heirs would be able to control what lies in the chamber.

                  When the attacks start to happen with more regularity, the call comes for the school to be closed. The student don't want this to happen, but the terror among them is strong. Suspicions arise as to who the heir of Slytherin could possibly be, who is letting the beast loose on students and ghosts alike.

                  Can Harry and Ron uncover the mystery behind the chamber of secrets? Is the heir of Slytherin among their student friends? Or is there a deeper secret buried in the chamber that none of them could ever imagine in their wildest dreams.

                  You will have to read and find out because I'm not going to spoil it for you.

                  Opinion -

                  Overall the chamber of secrets is my least favourite book of the whole Harry Potter series.

                  This is mainly due to the appearance of new defence against the dark arts teacher Professor Gilderoy Lockhart. Although his personality is meant to be annoying to many of the students, I found the parts of the book involving his character almost painful to read.

                  While the previous statement is true, i did enjoy the fact that we do find out a bit more about new gyffindor and youngest Weasley member Ginny Weasley in this book, as I believe she is a character who evolves to be very important as the series plays out.

                  The chamber of secrets and it's beast must have taken a lot of thought on the part of J.K.Rowling, and I think it does add a sense of adventure to the story, as well as mystery as you try and guess what is lurking under the school.

                  The chamber of secrets can be bought on amazon for £4.45

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                    11.03.2010 19:09
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                    Love it!

                    Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets begins 6 weeks where the last book left of Harry is pining for the end of the summer holidays, (this should immediatly alert you to the fact this is no ordinary boy, wanting to go back to school!) so that he can return to Hogwarts. It is there where his friends are, and it is there that he is happy. There is no happiness in the home in which he lives with his uncle and aunt, the Dursleys, where he is in general looked down upon and mistreated.

                    The Chamber of Secrets not only contains bundles of imagination but also a powerful amount of humour that may pass over the heads of some younger readers, there is a certain very British comedy to the whole affair and plenty of irony.For example Harry is told by his uncle (on Harry's birthday no less) to go to his room and stay there being "perfectly quiet" while the Dursleys entertain some guests.

                    With warnings and dark romours in his head Harry returns to Hogwarts, where the book becomes as much a mystery as a fantasy. As with most good mysteries, the culprit is a surprise. The battle that occurs in the hidden Chamber of Secrets at the end is quite intense and might be extremely frightening to sensitive (and younger) children. It feels almost as though Stephen King donated a few lethal paragraphs to the book's ending. Be forewarned!

                    The whole book is imaginative, gripping and exceleent second book in a series that proves to grip nations in its strong grasp. This truly makes Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets a wonderful book, a book that is a pleasure for adults to read but which will for a child prove to be a true and memorable joy.

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