Thursday, July 26, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Spoiler Free)

I wanted to wait to read the Harry Potter books with my kids. But, my wife really enjoyed the series and somehow she got me I started reading the books last year.

Once I got into the first book, I was eager to read the rest. I have been enchanted by JK Rowling's imagination - one which I have heard called "first rate" by a first rate imagination in his own right. The world, history, plot lines and most especially the characters in her books are rich and delightful, and I came to like many and enjoy all of them. I have read the 'Lord of the Rings' series, the 'Chronicles of Narnia' and I enjoyed the former far more because the background was so rich. Rowling's work is equally rich, but I must say that it engages without relying on the gravitas of epic. Tolkien's wonderful books make it clear early on that this is the story of the struggle of good and evil, and on it rests the fate of the world (Middle Earth). Rowling starts us in a cupboard beneath the stairs, with a young boy beginning an adventure. Only later does it become clear that around this boy swirls the epic struggle of good and evil. He becomes lovable to us, as do many of his friends, before we learn of the great quest that will settle the fate of this imagined world.

Now, having read the final installment, I must say that Rowling truly ended the series admirably. Many things we wondered about and hoped for and feared came to pass, but the end of the series was brilliantly wrought and as well-plotted as any part of the story. No spoiler here, but I must say that I was pleasantly surprised that she was able to wrap the series up without artifice and without hitting a false note. And, I am grateful that my wife talked me into reading the books, so that I can enjoy them again as I read them with the kids.

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Sunshine on Discovery Bay

Sunshine on Discovery Bay
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