I am finally up to the penultimate book in my Harry Potter reread! “Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince” is widely considered to be one of the best Potter books and I have to say I agree! It begins to place the final pieces of the Potter jigsaw together and bring the series to a conclusion. Whilst “Prince” is not as lighthearted and fun as some of the other books it is still a gripping page turner. Aside from “Goblet of Fire” and “Deathly Hallows”, “Prince” is my favourite Potter book.
One of my favourite aspects of the book is the way JK Rowling almost achieves the unachievable by humanizing Voldemort and telling tales of his childhood that make us understand the way he turned out more than we ever have before. It is incredibly rare to find a book where the villain is humanzided in an effective way that does not simply rob them of their credibility as they suddenly become considerably less menacing. Rowling manages this almost flawlessly. In terms of Harry Potter himself, Harry is a lot more likeable in this book than in “Order of the Phoenix”, probably due to the end of his teenage angst faze! I also enjoyed the character development of Dumbledore in this book as I felt we learned a lot more about his personal relationship with Harry. Dumbledore seemed a lot more “human” then in previous books as he is seen to make mistakes that lead to dire consequences. Previously, it was very rare Rowling had him falter in any way.
The writing in “Prince” is more succint than the writing in any other Potter book, as though this is the point Rowling wanted to get down to business and set about the mammoth task of tying up the remaining loose ends in her series. The writing is fast paced, yet it still manages to build intensity as we wonder what Rowling has in store for Malfoy. The writing was interesting and had few mistakes. As ever, I had a tear in my eye at the end of the book partly because of the storyline and partly because of Rowling’s beautiful description.
As a whole, “Prince” is another triumph for JK Rowling and her talents. The Potter series is some of the best modern literature I’ve read. No matter how old you are you’re never too old for a bit of Harry Potter! If you’re reading the books and got bored by the length of “Order of the Phoenix”, I’d recommend sticking around for this fabulous book. It is a member of the series I have not revisited too frequently over the years, however having just read the novel I cannot think why! I will certainly be revisiting this book time and time again in the years to come. Long live JK Rowling!
“It is the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more”- Albus Dumbledore