Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
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, Book # 6
July 16th 2005
HArdcover. ebook, paperback
December 6, 2019 December 11, 2019

When Dumbledore arrives at Privet Drive one summer night to collect Harry Potter, his wand hand is blackened and shrivelled, but he does not reveal why. Secrets and suspicion are spreading through the wizarding world, and Hogwarts itself is not safe. Harry is convinced that Malfoy bears the Dark Mark: there is a Death Eater amongst them. Harry will need powerful magic and true friends as he explores Voldemort’s darkest secrets, and Dumbledore prepares him to face his destiny...

About the book

Sixth and penultimate book in the most widely read series in the world, or so I’ve heard. I liked this book more than the last one but there is something that made me give 4 stars instead of 5.

We are back to school, everyone finally believes Harry, the minister of magic has changed (thank goodness, even if the new one isn’t better) and Dumbledore is increasingly mysterious.

Our three protagonists (I would say four because I like Neville) received their O.W.Ls. and must choose which courses to attend in the sixth year. Harry thinks he can’t become an Auror because his score in potion isn’t excellent, but as soon as he arrives at school he discovers that Snape is no longer the potions teacher (he has finally become a teacher in Defence against the dark arts) and therefore the new teacher accepts students with his grade.

Obviously he doesn’t have the books and therefore the teacher lends a book which he will later discover to have belonged to the half-blood prince. But who is this prince?

As said I liked the book more than the previous one, but the end was a disappointment. Obviously, I will wait for the seventh book to give an exhaustive judgement, but if it remains all as it is, it will be something already seen many times. I can’t specify much for now about what I’m talking about, I will do it in the next review writing a big “spoiler” for the few who have not yet read HP.

Anyway, the story is nice, I like the fact that finally there is a battle at school and that not only the usual three fight, even if I would have liked the whole school to fight (it’s about time, no?), the only thing that I find useless, is Harry’s private lessons with Dumbledore. They didn’t teach him anything magical! They only retraced Voldy’s story which Albus could do on his own (except the last thought of course, but when I read private lessons I thought of Harry-Snape-style lessons from the previous book).

Now Snape-Dumbledore. I understand why Dumbledore is called Dumbledore in English. That is, I know the meaning, but in its name I only see “dumb” with the meaning of stupid because he is (unless everything is resolved in the last book so I will return to this).

Most likely I don’t remember it, but how does the Prince’s book save Ron’s life? Harry couldn’t find anything in the book and he remembered that Snape said about the stone so it wasn’t the book. Or I don’t remember some details? Very likely so.

I don’t know how I feel about the ending, I don’t want school to be suspended and that we don’t see Harry’s seventh year. Furthermore, even if I hate quiddich because I consider it a game with stupid rules, with potential, but as described, it is stupid, I am sorry that Harry hasn’t been able to play for three years for a whole season especially now that he is captain.

Then don’t make me talk about dead characters. They are three books with significant deaths. But Harry, just change school! I don’t know, Rowling seems to have seen the reaction about Cedric’s death in book four and enjoyed it. Talking about death (especially of the characters who don’t resurrect) in books for children (young adult) is right, because even young people often experience situations like that, but three in three years? It seems too much to me.

Now the various relationships. There is a reason why I don’t read romantic novels. I hate them. I also know how they end up because I spoiled myself many years ago, but from a “movie” point of view and I don’t know how I feel about those relationships. Okay, I’m going to read the last book.

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