Monday, July 23, 2007

Harry Potter: The End (No Spoilers)

(Note: this review contains no spoilers)

I finished the book and let it spin around in my head for a day. So, I am now ready to give my honest opinion on it.

As practically the entire world knows, Deathly Hollows ends the seven book series, concluding Harry's adventures. Single titles end, trilogies end, but it seems series rarely end. They might putter out, or have an ambiguous last book the author can come back to if he/she can find someone to buy another one, but a clear cut ending is something I don't encounter often. But, in the Potter universe, everything has been leading up to this final book. Story lines she has been carefully laying down since the first book all finally tie up with the conclusion of this story. There were moments where I hit myself on the head saying "oh yeah...she did say 'blah blah blah' in book X, I should have realized..." Other things I saw coming. I laughed out loud at times (startling the silence as my hubbie and I both sat around reading) and twice --once in the first 50 pages, and again in the middle of the book-- I teared up while reading.

The story meandered a bit at times, following the set formula from the previous books--start in the summer, illustrate high points of the school year (sans classes this time of course) and then the *big* conflict right before the school year ends. There was also a couple other "formulaic" elements that the reader will notice from most of the books--though many of them could be called continued character flaws. And I think, throughout the series, she was very true to her characters-- perhaps so much so that I ended up a little frustrated with them at times (though at least I didn't want to strangle Harry as often as I did in the 5th book.) Out of the magnitude of characters cast in the first 6 books, I think only a small handful didn't make an appearance in this final book, so we got to see some older faces before saying goodbye to everyone. I think that Rowling did a wonderful job of illustrating the effects of war on her world--losses on all sides, little victories here and there. In fact, my only complaint is with some of the 'logic' used in the end of the book. A friend and I have been hashing it out, and we both agree that all the pieces surrounding one small thing don't add up--but really, if it were any other book in the world, would we be studying it so closely? I would guess not. Over all, I really enjoyed it, and I think she did a good job ending what will probably be the most famous series during my lifetime.


Rachel Vincent said...

Ack! I'm dying to dive into it! Tonight!

fredcq said...

I really enjoyed it too. I wrote a review on my blog. I thought it dragged a bit in the middle but I liked it. A great ending.