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This is book 6 of 7 in the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling.
The paperback copy was first published in 2010 and is 609 pages long, which I think is very long for a book that is aimed at children. I understand that the kids who have been following Harry Potter since the first book would now be older, and better at reading, but I don't think the books have improved any by becoming longer each time. After all, it was the first book that got everyone hooked and that as a fraction of the size.
It starts in the now familiar setting of Privet Drive, where Harry Potter spends his holidays away from the wizarding school of Howarts and with his Aunt Petunia, Uncle Vernon and Cousin Dudley Dursley. The family don't like him, but as his parents died protecting him from the dark wizard Lord Voldemort when he was a child, the family took him in.
Luckily, Harry isn't at Privet Drive for long, as the headmaster of Hogwarts school, Professor Dumbledore, comes to take him back to school.
First Harry has to help him persuade an old teacher, Slughorn, to return to teaching at the school. He then goes to stay at his friend Ron's house with his wizarding family and their friend Hermoine on the days leading up to the start of the new school year.
Harry is getting ready for a new year at Hogwarts and this year will turn 17 which makes him an adult in the wizarding world. With Lord Voldemort's power coming back, everyone is a bit worried about this year at Hogwart's, wondering what his next evil plan is, having failed in his attempts to kill Harry in the previous couple of books.
When Harry goes back to school he realises that he can now take 'Potions' as a subject, which he didn't think he would have the grades to do. As he hasn't bought the books, the new teacher allows him to borrow a book until he can get one. The book he is using contains lots of hand written notes scribbled in the instructions. When creating potions, Harry follows the instructions as well as the extra hand written ones and keeps excelling, being top of the class with better concoctions than the others. When Harry looks closer, the book has a name on it 'The Half Blood Prince' is who the book belongs to and Harry then really wants to find out who this is.
Security at Hogwarts is very strict because of an increase in attacks on wizards and Voldemorts increasing power.
Harry spends a lot of time with the headmaster Dumbledore, as he shows Harry memories of his and Harry can see past events. This part of the story is good as it seems to answer a lot of questions that you might have from other books, Harry has to meet Dumbledore for private lessons, where Dumbledore takes Harry back to when Voldemort was a child. In the other books Voldemort (he who should not be named) was just this dark force that was just there. Nobody seemed to know how he got so much power or what made him so special that he had so many followers.
Will Voldemort attack again and will the characters survive? Will Harry find out who 'The Halfblood Prince' is? You'll have to read it to find out.
I found this book took a long time to get into, halfway through the book I was getting a bit impatient and found many of the chapters too similar to those in previous books and I felt I'd read a lot of it before.
I don't think this would be as obvious for people who read the books as they were released but I've read them all in the last few months and parts are getting a bit boring at this stage. Such parts include the visits to Hogsmeade, the village where the wizarding folk shop, eat and drink. Also the quidditch try outs, quidditch being the favourite sport of the wizard which involves flying around on broomsticks hitting balls.
The second half of the book sees it pick up pace a bit more, the ending of the book is fantastic, it's thrilling, exciting and you will be unable to put it down. The problem with the ending is that is so good, yet is so fast paced that it seems a bit rushed which is a shame as there's no need for it in a book of this size.
After a really disappointing start to the book I could nearly have put the book down and lost interest altogether, however the ending more than made up for the start and I can't wait to read the final book!
This book had everything in it, some humour, sadness and lots of shocks and surprises.
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince - J K Rowling
Why read this book?
I have already enjoyed the previous five novels in this epic tale of witchcraft and wizardry. I was eager to continue on the journey with Harry and his friends. The cover depicts flames and this grabbed my attention, whilst the blurb on the back cover intrigued me. I had no intentions of missing this one and looked forward to a good comfort read.
Harry Potter is a very special person. Already famous in the magical world, he now holds the title of the Chosen One. The sixth year at Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft is different again for Harry and his close friends. He has enemies on the dark side and there is evidence of sinister happenings both in the school and in the normal world. Lord Voldemort grows stronger and his followers increase - indeed one cannot be certain who are on the side of good anymore. Darkness and danger increase tenfold this year ... can the Chosen One handle it?
Half Blood Prince step forward please...
An intriguing concept forms the title of this tale ... who indeed is The Half Blood Prince? My attention and interest is roused before I even open up the book! What has Rowling got in store during this sixth year with our Hero, Harry Potter?
After a tense beginning and with much less input from my favourite family, the Dursley's, the prose begins in earnest. Dumbledore now working in alliance with Potter makes this volume seem much more grown up. It is great to see Harry given more respect and less wrapping up in cotton wool. This boy has been hit by grief, after the loss of his godfather Sirius Black, and faced the Dark Lord on numerous occasions so I am glad to see that he is now being taken a bit more seriously.
This one had a bit more detective work in it than others and though it still retains its familiar and comforting charm it has become serious, urgent and darker still. How much darker can you get than knowing that a powerful dark wizard will destroy you if you don't destroy him first? Mayhem is being created in the muggle (non magical) world in order to grab the good guys attention and let them know that they are coming. Even so, I still believe that the book sits well within the age range that it was aimed at - the younger readers. Having said that I am an adult and thoroughly enjoying the read.
I like the inclusion of a new character - Professor Slughorn. It will become clear why his presence is relevant as the prose marches on but besides that I rather enjoyed his company. Larger than life and colourful in character, Rowling's development of him throughout the prose was impressive. I had good insight into what made this man tick and whether he was tempted by the dark side or not.
It was really nice to see Dumbledore feature more in this one, up to now he has always had a presence and there has been no doubt of his inclines to sides - good through and through - but I didn't feel like I knew much about him. I became fonder of him as the tale developed which was nice.
As usual there are devious goings on which spark Harry's interest and it is no surprise that Draco Malfoy is heading up the mischief making, though he is doing it mysteriously this time rather than in the spotlight that he normally enjoys. This boy is nasty and hateful and Rowling has always got me to dislike him - so I consider it an achievement for her now, at this late stage, to have me feeling sorry for him and even a slight bit concerned about him! She does this with ease as she allows you to see his insecurities and fear develop.
Snape is also in on the dark and nasty action. Rowling is doing an exceptional job with this character. Her description of him and development over the last books has built a marvellous picture of this greasy little man. Acting as double agent for Dumbledore, or is he? I can't work him out and I dislike him, mostly for his horrible nature towards Harry and his friends. But, I cannot help but like him too? I cannot stop myself hoping that he is on the side of good and that in the final book he will reveal his true incline. In the meantime he is in collusion with Malfoy and being spiteful to Harry.
There is some romance and humour to go with it in this one. I don't really like romantic elements to take over the prose in action genres and was waiting to see how Rowling did on this score. To my delight she did really well - not a surprise. The action is still going on all the while and the romance stuff sits in nicely with it rather than the other way around. I was delighted to see Ron, always the loser in life, snare himself a girl. Rowling has created an amazing character in Ron. He is moody and quick tempered, thoughtless and clumsy but he has a heart and is very likeable. Harry unites with a girl too - eventually - and that allowed Rowling to show us his sensitive side. Harry can still be hot headed and moody, impulsive and immature but he too is a very likeable character, which is a good job as he is the main protagonist and hero. Over the years, that have been very challenging for Harry, there is one thing that stands out. One thing that is a great weapon against his enemy, Lord Voldemort, and he will eventually realise just how that power works within him and how powerful it is. This concept spoke loud and clear to me and I thought it was inspired.
Hagrid is one of my favourite characters, I feel like I know him very well now. He fills the pages with his warmth and massive heart, though if he is angry the page doesn't feel big enough to contain him. Great character development and some very touching scenes. I need a large spotty hanky too.
I have not forgotten Hermione. This young lady is an exceptional character and one that I like very much. She is female but not one bit reliant on anyone but herself. She is independent and not afraid to speak her mind. I would not like to cross her as she is a very capable spell caster too, as a poor young man will discover during the prose. Her hard and fast nature of sticking to the rules has eased now and if something is for the greater good she will turn a blind eye. She has very good intuition and dislikes Harry's use of a potions book that once belonged to the intriguing Half Blood Prince. Harry disagrees and enjoys success in the said class for once, but was this Prince of the dark or good side? And who the heck is he?
I am wondering, like Harry, all through the prose who the Prince could be. I thought Voldemort but then it would be too obvious, wouldn't it? A reason to keep those pages turning is to find out but not the only reason by a long way as other side plots stroll along with me.
I found the detective work and memory musings most interesting, as Harry assisted Dumbledore in solving the mystery that is Voldemort. Working out a way to rid the world of this very powerful, dark wizard is of great importance to them both - Harry also wants revenge for his parents deaths. To discover the secrets and find a way to end Voldermort's life is revealed to be perilous and life threatening. The pace speeds up during the last chapters as the pair team up to undertake a dangerous task.
The end stages of the prose are very dark, brutal and cruel, though not graphic so still suitable for the intended audience. My mind raced along with the pages during the mayhem that ensued. I was surprised by the outcome of this one, very surprised indeed. Though I found the conclusion of this prose satisfying and look forward to the next.
The stage is set. The final instalment is an exciting prospect. But I fear for Harry Potter.
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If you have read the previous books in this epic Rowling series then you will want to read this one. Intriguing from the off as we wonder who the Half Blood Prince will turn out to be and if he is good or bad. The pace is steady with sections which heat up and others that are to be savoured and read slowly. Fun in the form of Ron and his dalliance with romance is a nice inclusion and lightens the read which is now becoming ever darker. Voldemort grows in strength and his presence felt strongly as he instructs others to do his dirty work for him. Snape and Malfoy are a good double act, unintentionally, and those bad guy characters are now wonderfully developed. Harry has lots going on in this one and can be challenged by his temper and mood at times - though he needs to keep his cool when the going gets tough. The outcome surprised me and I had to stop reading to take it in. A satisfying ending and sterling work by Rowling.
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A bit out of sequence but as I have just finished the book, I thought I better had review it! I must admit from the start that Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince isn't my favourite book of the series (for reasons which shall become clear later on) but I still find myself unable to put the book down - to the point of turning on my Kindle's audio function and having it read the book to me when I'm too busy to read it!
So a quick overview of what Half-Blood Prince is about. A not so little Harry Potter, and his best friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger are about to begin their sixth and penultimate year at Hogwarts. For those of you who may not know, Hogwarts is a school of Witchcraft & Wizardry where the pupils learn a little more than Abracadabra. Although Harry is keen to go back to the school he thinks of as home, it is under a bit of a dark cloud as he returns. The darkest wizard the world has ever known, Lord Voldemort, is gaining in power; he and his followers are spreading darkness, death and despair and even Hogwarts isn't escaping it. And the only wizard Voldemort has ever feared, Albus Dumbledore (coincidentally, headmaster of Hogwarts) has a mysterious injury and keeps on leaving the school on unexplained business. Harry's enemy in school, Draco Malfoy, seems up to no good along with Severus Snape, a teacher with whom Harry shares a mutual hatred, and Harry is determined to prove his suspicions are right. And alongside all this, he, Hermione and Ron have piles of work to plough through, Quidditch to play and dangers of the heart to contend with. It's going to be an interesting year.
What I've found about this book is that it felt like a bit of a filler-book. Harry spends time with Dumbledore; learning about Voldemort's past to potentially find a way to rid the world of his evil. There's a lot of backstory revealed, which I do find really interesting, but I don't think it really needed a whole book to be done. The reveal about Voldemort's past, as well as a couple of other elements of the story does set everything up nicely for the final book, however. Now that I have read the seventh book, I can appreciate the set-up elements a lot more than I first did (and this isn't just restricted to Half-Blood Prince). But, especially when first reading the book, I found myself getting impatient with the slow reveal and wishing there was perhaps slightly more to the book than there is.
Now this isn't to say that the book doesn't have the usual adventures we have perhaps to come to expect from a Harry Potter book. There are some parts of the book that will have you flying through the pages, potentially forgetting to take a breath here or there. Unfortunately this only really happens once or twice until the climax at the end. I know a few of the books also followed this pattern, but for some reason it felt like Half Blood Prince just had the action spread out too far, and crammed in too much at the end. And the end itself felt rather rushed - again, I know I've found this in other books but it just felt too rushed, especially considering the final events of the book. But this all could be because I know that it's so close to the finale, and it just felt like we'd detoured and were dragging the story out for one more book - which perhaps is exactly what JK Rowling did.
And there is one other little niggle (sorry!) about the book. Harry gets increasingly obsessed with what Draco Malfoy is up to, to the annoyance of his friends (and readers) and with disastrous consequences. It just irritates me that he lets himself get so obsessed, to the point of getting narky with his friends. In short, he ends up acting like a stroppy, shouty teenager with his friends and Dumbledore and increasingly paranoid. It may be realistic and expected, especially considering his experiences so far in life, but it just makes me really annoyed - and you shouldn't really get annoyed with the hero of the story!
But don't let all my moaning fool you! I've said at the start that I was still having problems removing the book from my hand, and that's true. I may have had slightly less problems putting it down than with some of the other six, but I still found myself reading away. The story is perhaps a shade darker than the previous books, and it may feel like a bit of filler, but there is still the excellent story-telling that makes this series so wonderful. The humour is still there, that adults and children can appreciate - even though Fred and George are less of a feature this book. Another highlight is that there is a bit more Quidditch than in the previous two or three books, which I had missed. The spark of romance hits one or two of the characters - which when you think about it may be a little unsurprising as they are 16/17 year olds.
I think, in a way, the book has returned to the first two books, where there was a lot of school life interrupted by some inconvenient bad guys. We get more of an idea of school life again (both in lessons and outside of lessons), but with the slight change of the world outside the school is a lot more dangerous. We get to look at relationships between characters, both romantic and friendly, and we meet a few more new characters which add to the book and perhaps replace characters that are now too old for school. The characters are all as detailed as ever and very well written into the story; it's like they've always been there, rather than they've just appeared in this book. There is even chance to learn more about the older characters of the book, which I again love as it shows they are still developing and becoming even more detailed than they had been. As always, there is a new teacher in the midst. He brings a really interesting element to the book, as he used to be a teacher at the school, so again gives us a glimpse into the past of some well-known characters. And it is perhaps the last glimpse of the books prior to Voldemort, before the final book - and even the final events of Half Blood Prince.
There are perhaps two things I would recommend when reading this book. Firstly, have some tissues to hand when you read it - you will most likely need them. Secondly, re-read this once you have read the seventh book. So many things will click into place, and the whole book may feel less frustrating than it did the first time round (I found this anyway). And enjoy Harry's - and your - sixth year at Hogwarts.
I've been a fan of Harry Potter for most of my childhood - I basically grew up with Harry Potter. I know most of the books nearly off by heart, that's how many times I've read them.
I feel that the books are far better than the films - the books give more detail and you actually know what's going on. The movies are pretty vague and you don't have a narrator telling you what's happening.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is the sixth book in the amazing Harry Potter series, written by JK Rowling. In the middle of the summer, Dumbledore comes to Privet Drive to collect Harry, to take him to the Burrow. The world, both magical and non-magical, is becoming unsafe for everyone to live in. Voldemort and his followers, the Death Eaters, are causing havoc and chaos in the world, and many people are dying because of him. It's Harry and Dumbledore's job to uncover Voldemort's secrets to find out where Voldemort has hidden his horcruxes. Near the end of the book, Harry and Dumbledore go to a secret cave where Dumbledore thinks Voldemort has hidden a horcrux. The horcrux, which is a locket necklace, is lying at the bottom of a basin full of potion. The only way to get the locket, is to drink the potion. Dumbledore drinks the potion and has horrible visions. Harry takes the locket and they escape from the Inferius which are closing in on them. Dumbledore very weak, they return to Hogwarts and fly onto the Astronomy tower on broomsticks, provided by Madam Rosmerta (the barmaid in The Three Broomsticks pub). The Death Eaters managed to get into Hogwarts, and soon they find Harry and Dumbledore on the tower. Dumbledore wordlessly immobilised Harry, and Draco disarmed him at the same time, with the Expelliarmus spell. Severus Snape comes, and kills Dumbledore.
I found this book really interesting, and I could read it for hours on end without getting bored. JK Rowling uses a lot of interesting and exciting words, and all the characters are very unique. I honestly don't know how JK Rowling came up with the concept of Harry Potter, but I must say that she must have a really good imagination to think everything up. Once again, JK Rowling has written yet another amazing book about Harry Potter's adventures, in such a breathtaking way.
As I have come to expect from J.K. Rowling this is another great book, although it is not one of my favourites, perhaps because it almost seems like a set-up for the last book and therefore there seems to me to be a little bit less action than in some of the others. That being said it is of course still full of surprises, humour and intrigue.
In this book Harry and his friends return to Hogwarts for the sixth year. Now everyone knows that Voldermort has returned there is definately a darker edge to things as Harry delves into the past to find out more about his enemy in order to ultimately overcome him. It is now clear that Hermione and Ron have feelings for each other and I love all the stuff between Ron and Lavender. Harry's relationship with Ginny also steps up a gear in this one.
This book effortlessly combines humour, adventure, surprises and also some really sad moments. It is also the perfect lead in for the final book in the series.
The Half-Blood Prince is JK Rowling's sixth creation in the story of Harry Potter, taking place in Harry's penultimate year at school, just over a year since the return of the Dark Lord.
With the return of You-Know-Who now widely accepted Dumbledore has been allowed to return to his post as Headmaster at Hogwarts.
Harry, meanwhile, has plenty on his mind, what with the death of his Godfather, Sirius, the chase through the Department of Mysteries in the Ministry of Magic, the change of Minister for Magic from Cornelius Fudge to Rufus Scrimgeour and now Dumbledore is coming to visit him at the Dursley's house; a strange start to his sixth year, his magical and non-magical worlds seem to be intertwining.
School isn't any less strange. Snape has finally got the job of Defence against the Dark Arts teacher and Slughorn has his old position as potions master. Harry comes across an old second-hand potions book which belonged to 'The Half-Blood Prince' who has made his own alterations to the recipes which, as Harry Discovers, have brilliant consequences, but who is this prince and is Hermione right to mistrust the book after Tom Riddle's diary (in 'The Chamber of Secrets') or is she just jealous.
That isn't the only strange thing going on, where does Dumbledore keep disappearing off to? When is he going to stop keeping Harry in the dark? And what lessons does Dumbledore have in store for him?
'The Half-Blood Prince' is a great mix of fantasy, action, and some mystery as Harry learns more about He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named's history and his secret to immortality.
Something I particularly enjoyed about this book was looking at the memories of other wizards and witches and learning about the mystery that is You-Know-Who, like seeing bits of the past such as the happenings at the House of Gaunt.
Harry must be frustrated waiting for Dumbledore's lessons, but as a reader I didn't feel I was impatiently flipping through the pages written to fill in the gaps as there was still the mystery of who the Half-Blood Prince was.
Also Harry's friendships become tested again as they grow jealous of his results in potions and Lavender Brown drives a wedge between Ron and Hermione, reminding the reader that they are still teenagers with teenage issues.
I enjoyed the adventures with Dumbledore as it was the most exciting and most dangerous magic Harry has ever faced and this, along with Dumbledore's bravery, intelligence and sacrifice give Harry what he needs to complete what his headmaster began.
This novel is a breathless ride, from the first couple of sequences involving the Muggle Prime Minister and then Snape performing a mysterious Unbreakable Vow with Narcissa Malfoy to the heartbreaking funeral of one of my favourite characters.
It seems as though Rowling has achieved once again the tight plotting and exciting storyline that she managed in the Prisoner of Azkaban - this sixth book in the series is by far the best since that highlight.
Here we explore a great deal of Voldemort's back story through the use of memories that Dumbledore has collected from various people who had dealings with the Dark Lord. I loved delving into the why of Voldemort and how he became the pale and snakelike creature he now is from starting out as Tom Riddle.
As well as this, Rowling introduces the idea of Horcruxes - unlike some of the other items she has introduced into previous books just to fulfil some specific use, the Horcrux is much more than this and pulls together the plotlines that have gone before (e.g. the diary of the second novel). I enjoyed how Harry had to pursue Professor Slughorn in order to gain the final memory that would reveal Voldemort's plans.
Slughorn was an interesting addition to the cast of characters - a genial and rather shallow man, weak and somewhat cowardly. His arrival allowed Snape to finally take on the role of Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, and pushed Harry into taking Potions and thereby discovering the textbook that was once owned by the Half-Blood Prince of the title.
I adored the fact that Hermione was deeply jealous of Harry's newfound ability in Potions. I also liked the way that Harry used the notations of the Prince in his textbook - although this lead to one rather nasty and gruesome moment.
In fact, this book is heavy on the nasty events. It is emphasised how much the wizarding world has changed and grown more distrustful. Some pupils are no longer allowed to attend Hogwarts; each day Hermione scans the Daily Prophet to see who has died; and there are gory moments in the plot (such as when Draco and Harry face off against each other).
There are many moments that make this book one of the best in the series. For instance, I deeply appreciated the beautiful touch of Dumbledore saying, at the start of the book, that Harry would be safe because he was with Dumbledore - and then at the end of the book, Dumbledore says that he knows he will be alright because he is with Harry. It is a very poignant moment and reveals the deep feelings of love and respect that Dumbledore has for Harry.
I enjoyed finding out why Tonks' appearance and Patronus had changed, and I rejoiced when Harry and Ginny finally came together. Another paragraph that had me close to tears was when Harry realised that Luna and Neville were the only two members of the DA who had responded to Hermione's summons - very moving and honest.
Once again, the gloom of the book is disappated somewhat by some comedy moments - these included the Apparation lessons and test, and Ron's whole relationship with Lavender (pure comedy gold at times - Won Won!)
This book is excellent - thrilling and emotional in equal measure. And I defy anyone not to feel a tremendous sense of loss when they realise that the seventh book will not include Hogwarts, by now a character in its own right. I look forward immensely to the climax of the Harry Potter series.
This review has been posted to Floor to Ceiling Books
In HARRY POTTER AND THE HAlF-BlOOD PRINCE, Harry becomes sixteen yrs aged. The story starts with a short scenery, which places the magical world of Hogwarts with the average world. We find a meeting between the PM (presumptively of England) and his supernatural counterpart, the Minister of Magic. This excitable scenery not only facilitates us to realize the precarious balance 'tween the 2 worlds, it as well allows a clever way to recap just about of the important points of the early book. We catch out soon after that Voldemort and his followers haven't been idle - people have vanished. Threats have been made, and accomplished. People, wizarding and mundane alike, have died. And the whole Wizarding world is in a war.
We immediately get the feeling of tenseness, uncertainness, and fearfulness, as well as a sense of urgency and impending doom, which holds on through the book. The focus this time around is a bit sharper as a result (which is only natural, as this is the 6th book out a 7 book series.)
This is Harry's world now - but he looks ready for it. Harry is no more a trusting young boy full of wonder at the magical world. Nor is he filled with the angriness and angst of the past book. He's growing up now. He's a fellow who tries to meet his obligations and his fate with courageousness and determination, and is fully aware of the price of loser. As anyone would be, he's a lot affected by the mood and tone of the world around him, and as a answer is often very suspicious, if not approaching paranoid. As always, he's very suspicious of his arch-nemesis, Draco Malfoy. He's suspicious also of prof Severus Snape, despite the assurances of Dumbledore.
But the book Is not all condemn and gloom - as always there's also a lot of light, hope, and yes love. There's the loving affection of Dumbledore for Harry, as the 2 work together at unraveling the mystical past of the man called lord Voldemort. There's the enduring friendly relationship of Harry, Hermione, and Ron. There's the impending marrying of one of Ron's brothers, to an real attractive young lady. There are other romances blooming too, with all the joys and troubles such things bring. We watch as the story unfolds, and as Harry works through yet another year at Hogwarts, growing and dealing not only with the task destiny has given him, but with the simple, mundane project of becoming an adult.
The sixth installment of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series is slightly shorter than the fifth, but no less exciting. This is my second-favourite HP book (the fifth being by favourite) - in this novel, we really find out what's going on, how Voldemort operates - and thanks to Rowling's wonderful artistry, we find out as Harry finds out. When we get to the end of the second book, we find out we are just as much in the dark as Harry about certain things.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince picks up more or less where the fifth book left off, with Harry on his summer holidays. Unlike in previous books, Harry actually knows what is going on and is waiting for Dumbledore to come to Number 4, Privet Drive to bring him to The Burrow (where the Weasley family live). However, before this happens, we are treated to a brilliant chapter about Cornelius Fudge meeting with the muggle Prime Minister - in my opinion, the best chapter in the entire Harry Potter series - and also a sneak peek at what is going on with Snape.
In this book, Harry and Dumbledore become much closer than they have in previous books, with Dumbledore giving Harry private lessons - basically telling Harry what he thinks Voldemort is up to, and how he got to where he is. Harry, Ron and Hermione become more and more separated from the rest of the school as Ron and Hermione are the only two Harry tells what he hears from Dumbledore - this book is when the fight against Voldemort gets really serious. Even within the school, Harry is becoming increasingly suspicious of Draco Malfoy.
There is a welcome character addition - Horace Slughorn, the new Potions master and a Slytherin - the first (reasonably) likeable Slytherin Harry has yet come across. Slughorn is an entertaining character, and interesting to read about - but I won't give too much away.
There is the usual Quidditch action, lessons, Luna Lovegood's insanity, etc, and this book is a really enjoyable read - especially with Harry's new love interest. There is a fantastic twist at the end, which leads brilliantly into the seventh book.
All in all, a brilliant book, and one that I would wholeheartedly recommend.
I have been a long time fan of the Harry Potter books and this sixth book did nothing more than peak my intrest for the series the day it came out I had it and I think I managed to read it over the course of one weekend doing little else apart from the occassional meal and sleep.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is the sixth book of J. K. Rowling's series, Harry is now 16 and becoming a young man, moving into more complicated classes and finding love with the opposite sex. Lord Voldemort and his Death-Eaters are wreaking so much havoc that it's spilling over to the muggle world and the Prime Minister is notified of the situation. Harry is aware of the prophecy that he is the chosen one to take on Voldemort, and his life takes on a darker and dangerous tone as everyone expects that prophecy to be fulfilled.
Thank god that Rowling's latest book has lost none of its charm, wit and spine chilling imagination that all the other books contain, once again the book has had me glued from page one to the thrilling outcome a book extremly worthy to be in the Harry Potter series and well deserved of this. J.K. Rowling hats off to you.
I have been a fan of Harry potter since the first book, I read, that book but then had a rest and had not read any of the other Harry potter books. I just went to see the films, I went to see Harry potter and the order of the Pheonix film and Luna Lovegood being in that film made me such a big fan of Luna. I just wanted to see more of Luna so I went to read this book.
I got a lot more than just my Luna lovegood, I also got a gripping adventure from start to finish. It's Harry's sixth year in Hogwarts, the book jogs your memory of what happened in the last book it does this in a novel way with the muggle minister being visited by the wizard minister. Harry is left at his home at privet drive he is left thinking about what happened at Hogwarts in the those years like Harry usually does. Harry's looking though the papers and pondering on things like this little note he has from someone if what it says on the note will ever happen or maybe Harry is just dreaming, that is where the action starts this book has ever you would want in a Harry potter book magic, spells all the students and the teachers that make Harry potter what it is. The plot is very well done you are wondering all the way though the book what is going to happen next it's like the book stops you on a cliff hanger when you stop reading it. The plot had me on the edge all the way though right until the end then by I got to the end I was so blood thirsty for more Potter action I have now go onto reading the Deathly Hallows. I do not know how JK writes but it had me gripped all the way though what a great read, what a great book.
I would recommend this book to any Potter fan as it has had me entertained for two months, I am really glad I read it I want to read it again and will when I get the chance to please go to read this book now.
*Warning the chapter review contains slight spoilers*
The Other Minister is the opening chapter to the book. It goes over what has just happened in the Order of the Phoenix book. I disliked this chapter just because there was not much action in it and I already knew what had happened in the Order of the Phoenix book. However it does set in place what happens in the rest of the book.
Spinner's End this chapter has some action in it which is great. This chapter sets in place something very big which happens later in the book I did not enjoy this chapters while I read it as I was really wanting to read about harry but the more I look back on this chapter the more it means something and the more enjoyable it seems to be.
Will and Won't is a very good chapter it has harry in it which is great for me being hungry for harry and also it has a mystery in it because harry is waiting for someone that he does not think will turn up.
Horace Slughorn is very good because their's a new proffer that is introduced so that in itself is amazing but since I was gripped by reading what harry was doing it is such a good chapter to read also harry finds out something very important to the rest of the book.
An Excess of Phlegm what a great chapter to read. Harry gets safely back to the burrow to stay with his friends. It is good having the main friends back. We also find out something major in this chapter it is a great chapter to read.
Draco's Detour you can guess from the title that Draco is going to have a big part to play in this chapter you will find out what it is but it wont be very relevant until you read the chapters later on. It's brilliant this chapter it's so fun and has so many major things happen I will enjoyed this chapter and I could safely say that this is my favorite chapter.
The slug Club well the chapter title open loads of things for you to be thinking of what is going to happen in this chapter. This was an enjoyable chapter to read. It has Neville and Luna in the chapter. Luna being my favorite character I was pleased that Luna showed her face so early on during this book. Then their's the whole who and what is the Slug Club you will find out when you read the chapter.
Snape Victorious is another great chapter since well it starts off with how the last chapter ending and starts of in a very good way with you are wondering what is going to happen its was a very interesting chapter to read with what happened going though the whole chapter.
The Half-Blood Prince is also the title of the book. You know this chapter is going to have a massive influence on what happens later during the book. I really enjoyed reading this chapter because of how big this chapter reflects on the rest of the book. Harry also gets hold of something very special with the help of someone I wonder who.
The House of Gaunt is an ok chapter Harry continues to do very well in a subject and some major things happen in this chapter.
Hermione's's Helping Hand is an ok chapter to read. It has a big part for Hagrid in it which is just about the first time he has spoke in this book so far.
Silver and Opals a very interesting chapter to read I really enjoyed this chapter. This chapter has a funny bit in it but also has an attack in it which is makes things very frantic in Hogwarts.
The Secret Riddle continues from the last chapter and this is a very intriguing chapter to read. Their's a very big thing that happens you will find out what that is during the later chapters.
Felix Felicis is an interesting chapter. Their's a good reason why this chapter has theirs title also It has a good mention of the slug club in it. There is a very big event in this chapter.
The Unbreakable Vow has a major event in it. Including something to do with Luna and Harry and something else so it is a very interesting read.
A very Frosty Christmas changes the place where the last chapter has been set. It continues from the last chapter with a main event. Now they could all enjoy their Christmas holidays.
A Sluggish Memory is an interesting chapter I really enjoyed reading this chapter their's another main event in this chapter.
Birthday Surprise is a very good chapter. Guess what it's someones birthday. They all get a special lesson which they all really want to have so a different type of birthday in this chapter.
Elf Tails is a very entertaining chapter really funny and serious.
Lord Voldemort's Request their's load of information to be learned from this chapter and this is the turning point fro the book where you approximately start to find out what is happening with Lord Voldemort.
The Unknowable Room I enjoyed reading this chapters harry goes off alone looking for something that he knows he will find alone.
After the Burial I really enjoyed reading this chapter just because of the chapter title it makes you think that something or someone has died this chapter was brilliant since not alone is they're a burial there is a major event which leads to something amazing you just wont be able to belive it when you read or it or maybe you have read it.
Horcruxes is a brilliant chapter it would be a major spoiler if I mentioned anything about this chapter as what happens is so major the only thing that I can say is that this chapter fits so well into the rest of the book and really well into the last chapter.
Sectumsempra this is a good chapter their's some loving going on and some trouble with the Quiditch team there is so much to learn in this chapter it's really interesting.
The Seer Overhead this chapter seems really cool and everything seems to be going all well in this chapter but that is at the start things take a turn for the worst.
The Cave this is a masterpiece of a chapter since harry leaves Hogwarts for something but the whole chapter is really interesting and had me on the edge of my seat throughout the whole chapter wondering what was going to happen next from this chapter things really do take a turn fro the worst.
The Lightning - Struck Tower this is the most action struck chapter in the whole of the book.You will not belive what happens in this chapter their's a death to a horrible death that I will never forget I felt so sorry and I nearly cried.
Fight of the prince this is also a gripping chapter however when I read this I was still so sad of what had just happened the death. We also find out who the half blood prince is in this chapter and we find out something about what happened in the cave shockingly good this chapter is.
The Phoenix Lament in this chapter we learn about a phoenix and more about the death.
The white Tomb is the saddest chapter in the whole boo. Since its the funeral it's really sad. I do not know how I stopped myself from crying then it comes to the end of the book where Harry makes his point the book ends.
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Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince
This book is set in a much more gloomy and depressing wizarding world, where the dark forces have began to take over, and everyone is living in fear. Harry starts his year in the way it is set to continue, with an exciting adventure with Dumbledore to persuade an ex-teacher out of retirement. Harrys year at school is also set to be one of his most exciting yet; with quidditch; him starting his first year of NEWT's. He has enough on his plate without trying to understand Malfoy's suspicious actions or his private lessons with Dumbledore, whom is preparing him for his inevitable fight with Lord Voldemort.
There is great character developments with Harry and Malfoy especially, showing much more depth than before, and Rowling even manages to conjure feelings of empathy towards Malfoy from the reader. The interaction between many of the character pairs is one of the highlights of the book, most motably, Harry and Dumbledore, and Ron and Hermione. The later usually being quite funny. Harry and Dumbledores relationship develops in both a teacher student way and also from the point of a father and son, and you really feel like Harry is the son Dumbledore never had and Harry feels the same towards Dumbledore.
Overall this is a great read, with a good plot and filled with very interesting character interactions. Which are so much more interesing if you have read all the other previous books in the series.
Recently I went to see the film Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. I decided to read the book again to see how it compared.
Having recently returned to power, evil dark wizard Lord Voldemort and his followers are terrorising both the Muggle and Wizarding worlds. Even Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is no longer the safe haven it once was. With the knowledge that Harry Potter is the only one capable of defeating Voldermort, Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore is intent upon preparing Harry for the final battle that he knows is approaching. Together they delve into Voldermort's past in order to find the key to unlocking Voldermort's defences to finally destroy him. But as Harry battles to equip himself with enough knowledge to finally be able to destroy his greatest enemy, he also has many secrets to discover. Like what is fellow student and enemy Draco Malfoy's up to? And why is Professor Snape helping him? And who is the mysterious Half Blood Prince?
Malfoy is given a more prominent role to play than in the other books. This is a good thing because Malfoy is a brilliant character but he is often portrayed as being a one dimensional bad guy who despises Harry. In this book we learn more about him and his motivations and in some places you even feel sorry for him. I think this is much needed character development.
The Harry/Dumbledore relationship is also given a more central role in this book. It's a fascinating and complex relationship and it provides some of the best and most moving moments in the entire series, not just this one book. Having lost his parents and godfather Sirius, Dumbledore has become not just a hero to Harry but also, he is almost like a father figure. It means we see more of the brilliant Dumbledore who is a favourite of mine and also seems to get all the best quotes!
It's this pairing of Harry and Dumbledore that give us one of the saddest scenes in the entire book. As always, Beautifully written but heartbreaking (although if you're clever you will have already guessed it was going to happen before it did) I cried more at that scene than I did over any other event in the entire Harry Potter series.
The themes of love, lust and relationships are a pleasant subplot running alongside all the depressing events. It's light relief and it's needed in a book so focussed on such dark themes. I hate the Harry/Ginny pairing and always have, so I wasn't to keen on that plot. However, Hermione's jealousy over Ron's new relationship with Lavender Brown is touching and also provides some hilarious moments and much needed laughs. I find them to be a much more believable pairing than Ginny/Harry and as Hermione/Ron waste so much time arguing rather than just admitting their feelings, we are thankfully spared any soppy or cheesy romantic moments! It brings the previously underused character of Lavender Brown to the forefront who turns out to be a hilarious bunny boiler type girlfriend!
My main problem with the book is that it seems as though a solid plot has been sacrificed in favour of building up to and setting the scene for the final book. This is why we get a ropey plot which mainly focuses on Harry learning more about Voldermort. Harry needs this knowledge in order to defeat Voldermort in the final book. And whilst Voldermort is a fascinating Character and it's good to find out more about him, it can get a bit boring to read about Harry's endless trips into the penesieve and a little bit disorientating. It also becomes quite confusing and I doubt younger readers will really understand what's going on. They are much more likely to enjoy the action and adventure scenes but a lot of this is sacrificed in favour of endless trips into the past.
Equally as frustrating is "The Half Blood Prince" plot which not only did I find predictable but quite pointless. I have no idea why the book was named "The Half Blood Prince" when this is more of a subplot than a main plot and it doesn't seem to have much consequence to the ending of the story. I assume that the reveal of who the Half Blood Prince was, was intended to be shocking and dramatic. Instead it was predictable and you're left thinking "what's the point?".
The big twist which is set up in this book but revealed in final book is equally predictable. I wont say what it is but it involves Snape and I guessed straight away.
So the plot may not live up to previous books and you may get annoyed with Harry's endless trips into the past but there is no such thing as a bad Harry Potter book. Even though I feel this book is one of the weakest in the series, it is still a well written, well balanced mixture of laughter, sadness and suspense that is impossible to put down. And it sets the scene perfectly for the final book which you will be desperate to read after finishing this one.
When my girlfriend alerted me to the upcoming release of the new Harry Potter film I was rather indifferent to the whole fiasco. I had stopped reading the books at Goblet of Fire, just as I believed I was outgrowing them. Eventually, however, I gave in to the craze and began reading the Order of the Phoenix. This was a rarity, I am a film man, hardly ever picking up a book. Order of the Phoenix reminded me how fun the act can be, whereas Half-Blood Prince cemented reading as an essentail, daily passtime. This book is just extrodinary. Perfectly paced and beautifully imaginative. It is so enjoyable that it make the whole thing feel effortless, that you just begin to exist in this world that Rowling has so wonderfully created.
The book carries on the series trend of becoming increasingly darker as Harry looses more and more of what supports him. The most intriguing aspect of the book is Harry's relationship with Dumbledore. Harry's frustrations towards Dumbledore's techniques in defeating Voldemort feel completely legitimate, making Harry's character more fragmented than before. Snape's character also recieves a considerable push, making him even more dubious and tremendously deep.
As dark as this book is, it is also full of a lot of love - in particular the teenage kind. Rowling again executes this with a scary level of understaning of the mind of a 16 year old boy. One becomes immersed in Harry's love life as much as the magical - a feat I imagine lesser writers could pull off. But then again, I suppose this is the overall message of the Potter series, that love can overcome evil. As cheesy as that sound, Potter doesn't make it feel so. I sobbed frequently, and heavily, reading this book. It is by far the best of the seven. Simply sublime.
It seems like years ago that I sat for hours not moving, working my way through 'Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince'. Well actually it was... Despite the sixth film adaptation of J.K Rowling's hugely successful group of books only hitting cinemas this week, it's paper partner was released way back in the summer of 2005, selling nine million copies in its first 24 hours of release and further cementing the Potter series as one of the most successful book series of all time.
The book is of course the sixth out of seven and further follows the turbulent adolescence of wizard Harry Potter and the secret wizarding world's continued struggle against the evil Lord Voldemort which has now turned into a full blown war. 'The Half Blood Prince' is in essence a rather diluted book when considering the others in the series. Despite it having it's moments, both dramatic and tragic, it serves more as an introduction for the final book in the collection and as of such a lot of things still remain unanswered and the dramatic chapters that dominated the end of the last book seem to have somewhat wilted.
However, J.K Rowling is a genius and knows exactly what she's doing to weave all the pieces of the puzzle together and various points in the book leave you tense with frustration at trying to figure out what is coming next.
The book actually begins with a meeting between our very own Muggle prime minister and that of the Minister of Magic, Cornelius Fudge, who has now been replaced. We are then treated to Snape's home as the evil Bellatrix Lestrange and Draco Malfoy's wife Narcissa pay the potions master an unorthodox visit. These are interesting chapters to explore as we very rarely see anything that is away from Harry's view point or his experiences and it only further brings up confusion about where Snape's loyalties actually lie, something that Rowling has always toyed with and a notion that has explosive consequences for the end of the book.
'The Half Blood Prince' does read like a history lesson as much of the book is spent with Harry and Dumbledore journeying through memories to find out as much about Voldemort as they can in hopes of finally being able to destroy him. The familiar setting of Hogwarts provides a safe haven for the audience to relax in and get lost in amidst all these 'memories'. Rowling is brilliant as always at capturing the voices of her characters and the Ron and Hermiones 'will they, won't they?' saga is back in full swing with many unexpected turns along the way. Harry also finds romance of his own in a very unexpected place.
Whilst each page is still enough to keep you absorbed and the story never seems to wear thin, there is an absence of action and of drama in the book. Voldemort in the present makes no appearance at all which of course makes the majority of the story very uninteresting and whilst the last few chapters do take on that familiar air of drama and such, there's not really enough to keep you on the edge of your seat like there has been before. I often describe this book as the 'calm before the storm' and the death at the end always brings me to tears. Rowling has the ability to be able to write humour, action, romance or tragedy and all somehow make it realistic and fit into her imaginary world.
Everything we've learnt about the wizarding community over the past five books is tested in 'The Half Blood Prince'. The time for learning about how the community functions is over as the war is well and truly on and Rowling's writing creates suspense and fear and this is somehow reflected in the reader. You fear for Harry and Dumbledore as they journey through the cave at the end and you fear for the lives of everybody battling the death eaters at the unprotected Hogwarts. Even the minor characters that are normally just used as filler seem to take on a life of their own in this book and we begin to see more of some of them than we have before such as Lavender Brown...
I would have to say that by this point in the series my younger brother had tired of reading the books and was more interested in seeing the movies. Rowling has moved away from the very child like nature of the start of the series and added more darkness and despair with every book. In text form this makes 'The Half Blood Prince' very difficult to entice and capture children's imagination and interest and it's safe to say that this is definitely a book geared more towards an older audience. It's a credit to the mind of Rowling, that she has been able to make such a transition from the innocence and somewhat naïve manner of her characters in the early books to the place they're all in now. They've grown up and matured as the darkness that consumes each book has also grown.
In conclusion, whilst 'The Half Blood Prince' seems to lack any of the swagger of the previous books, it is still a fascinating read that sets up everything you'll need to know for the final instalment in the Harry Potter series. The tragic ending only further cements Rowling's talent at pulling a surprise out of thin air and the story ends with frustration and anticipation whirling all around it as Rowling makes it no secret that the end is most certainly near.
I'd recommend picking up the book if you haven't read it already. It gives you a lot more insight than the film and it might be a good idea to just read a small portion before taking the kids so you know what to expect.