Wednesday, January 10, 2018

A Review of 'Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone' by J.K. Rowling

Please note: this is a book I read in 2017.  Due to starting a new job, I kept up in reading but fell behind in blogging.  Reviews for 2018 reads will begin after the remaining 2017 reviews are posted.  Thank you for your patience!

"Harry Potter's life is miserable.  His parents are dead and he's stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs.  But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he's a wizard.  A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid.  But even within the Wizarding community, he is special.  He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry's first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect.  There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it's his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands.  But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come."

One of my goals for 2017 was to reread the entire Harry Potter series.  I finished up to Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince which I'm still rather proud of.  I'll finish Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows this year.

It was just wonderful to return to this series.  I've been in the habit of watching and rewatching the Harry Potter films several times a year, but not rereading the books.  So even though I know the stories inside out and backwards, I still managed to see new things that I hadn't noticed before.  I loved experiencing the charm of a bright and wonderful Hogwarts like I experienced the first time.  Because the thing is, the further you get into the series, the darker the story gets.  Hogwarts starts to become this really charming place where young witches and wizards go to learn magic less and less... so it's quite the feeling to experience this series at its freshest.

Having reread a majority of the series at this point, I can say that I think the pacing is really great in this story, save for the beginning.  It starts out pretty slowly since we're following the really boring and abusive Dursley family, but once we get more involved in the wizarding world, there's always something to be paying attention to and something else that you want to know and keep track of up until the end of the book.

I think I tend to view this series, and especially this book, with rose-colored glasses, but I truly feel that you'd be hard-pressed to find another series with as much of the world thought-out and with characters as developed as these characters have begun.

I give 'Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone':
Thanks for Reading!


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