Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

6 books down, 1 to go.  I think I can honestly say that this one was my favorite of the Harry Potter books thus far.  I enjoyed it greatly, and I think this book was a good set up for the final book in the series, which I’ll start on tomorrow.

Book Stats

652 pages

Fantasy

6th book in the Harry Potter series (sequel to Sorcerer’s Stone, Chamber of Secrets, Prisoner of Azkaban, Goblet of Fire, and Order of the Phoenix

Characters

This book is a perfect chance to talk about Dumbledore, because he finally plays a large role in this book.  Dumbledore is probably my favorite character in the series, and to me, he is the embodiment of pretty much every good quality a person can have.  He is educated, but not pretentious.  He is very trusting, and above all he is calm and collected no matter what is thrown at him.  While Dumbledore is a wonderful character, the book obviously still revolves around Harry and his friends.  In this book they are 16, and I think they are portrayed very accurately as 16 year olds.  While the previous books started to deal somewhat with romances between the characters, this book really has it in the forefront, and it works well.

Setting

Hogwarts, where the kids are learning more and more magic.  They are also taking advanced classes this year in the book, although it doesn’t really go into the classes as much.

Plot

The reason I finally talk about Dumbledore in the character section is because he is finally visibly active in this book.  The main purpose of the plot in this book is for Dumbledore and Harry to explore Voldemort’s past to try and find his weakness, since as we know from book 5 Harry is destined to kill him, or be killed by him.  In the book this is done by going through the Pensieve and exploring the memories of those who have interacted with Voldemort throughout the years.  It’s interesting watching Voldemort’s history throughout the book, and it sets up what will have to be the events of the 7th book very well.

Enjoyment

I really liked this book.  As I said earlier, I was pleased to see Dumbledore finally taking an active role in the series (that we can see anyway) and this is mostly because I loved his character.  This book was a lot more focused than book 5 was, which works as it is essentially the beginning of the end of the series.  Book 1 starts with a narrow scope, which slowly gets wider throughout the rest of the series, the scope is widest during book 5, and in this book it gets more focused towards the overall goal and leads towards the inevitable confrontation with Voldemort.

Overall Grade

Much more focused than book 5, I think this book is a great setup for the final book in the series.

10/10

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