June 8, 2011

Review : Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling

Title : Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Author : J.K. Rowling
Reading Dates : 1 May - 2 May 2011
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Chamber of Secrets, Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter
The books in the series :
  • The Philosopher's Stone
  • The Chamber of Secrets
  • The Prisoner of Azkaban
  • The Goblet of Fire
  • The Order of the Phoenix
  • The Half-Blood Prince
  • The Deathly Hallows
From goodreads :
Say you've spent the first 10 years of your life sleeping under the stairs of a family who loathes you. Then, in an absurd, magical twist of fate you find yourself surrounded by wizards, a caged snowy owl, a phoenix-feather wand and jellybeans that come in every flavour, including strawberry, curry, grass and sardine. Not only that, but you discover that you are a wizard yourself! This is exactly what happens to young Harry Potter in J K Rowling's enchanting, funny debut novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. In the non-magical human world--the world of "Muggles"--Harry is a nobody, treated like dirt by the aunt and uncle who begrudgingly inherited him when his parents were killed by the evil Voldemort. But in the world of wizards, small, skinny Harry is renowned as a survivor of the wizard who tried to kill him. He is left only with a lightning-bolt scar on his forehead, curiously refined sensibilities and a host of mysterious powers to remind him that he's quite, yes, altogether different from his aunt, uncle, and spoilt, pig-like cousin Dudley.

A mysterious letter, delivered by the friendly giant Hagrid, wrenches Harry from his dreary, Muggle-ridden existence: "We are pleased to inform you that you have been accepted at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry". Of course, Uncle Vernon yells most unpleasantly, "I AM NOT PAYING FOR SOME CRACKPOT OLD FOOL TO TEACH HIM MAGIC TRICKS!" Soon enough, however, Harry finds himself at Hogwarts with his owl Hedwig ... and that's where the real adventure--humorous, haunting, and suspenseful--begins.

This magical, gripping, brilliant book--a future classic to be sure--will leave children clamouring for a sequel. (Ages 8-13) --Karin Snelson

Book Review of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.
I love the Harry Potter series and with the final Harry Potter movie coming up, I thought it was time to re-read the books again.

One of the amazing things I love about the Harry Potter series is how while my thoughts on some of the events and characters in the books may change with each re-read, I still love it. In fact, re-reading the series makes me love them more because I realize just how much effort and thought went into the story. Seemingly insignificant events or references in the earlier books like The Philosopher’s Stone which I hadn’t noticed the first time turns out to have wider implications in later installments of the series.

The other thing I love about the series is how it emphasizes the power of love. These moments always leave me moved. Here’s my favourite from The Philosopher’s Stone:

“Your mother died to save you. If there is one thing Voldemort cannot understand, it is love. He didn’t realize that love as powerful as your mother’s for you leaves its own mark. Not a scar, no visible sign … to have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection for ever. It is in your very skin, Quirell, full of hatred, greed and ambition, sharing his soul with Voldemort, could not touch you for this reason. It was agony to touch a person marked by something so good.”

What about you ? Care to share your thoughts on Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone ?

My conclusions :
  • Would I re-read the book ? Definitely. I've already re-read the Harry Potter series a few times.
  • Would I want to read the next book in the series ? Yes, definitely.
  • Would I want to own my personal copy if I didn’t already own it ? A resouding yes.
  • Who would I recommend this too? Everyone.
  • For those looking to read the book, would I recommend buying or borrowing the book? Buy it. This is a keeper for sure.

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