Book Review: Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows

Finished off reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on Saturday itself. Had not pre-ordered it thinking I will borrow it from someone to read (well, I am not an avid HP fan!!). But then, having read the last six books, it was a big temptation to see Deathly Hallows looking at me from the windows of Crossword. Plus, the realization that I will be on a bus to Pune for the next 3-4 hours. Decision made. Target closed. Book picked up!

 

So, what do I think of the book? It’s a good read. But I would still rate it as a hyped book banking on the media revolution of modern times, and the fact that it’s the seventh book of a seven book series (hmph). And you can read on, I have no plans of spilling the much closely guarded secrets! [Its funny how the book leak has led to a set of blog articles around what does security mean in the modern world! – Link 1, Link 2]

 

What’s right with the book? It is similar to the previous six books in narration style. Simple for everyone to comprehend, lucid to keep flowing, too many sub-plots to keep you intrigued, does not get lost in details (unlike classical literature, where setting up the mood may take a few pages with all the descriptions of the woods, the color of the dog’s skin, falling leaves, etc.), continuity of characters and most importantly, a continuity of the story.

What’s wrong with the book? It gives you the feeling that JK got tired of writing this story at this point. She herself was saturated. So she decided to create the counter of Horcruxes, a concept conveniently introduced towards the fag end of the series – Hallows. So, the plots are being closed out one after the other. She didn’t want to get too bogged down in different characters, so there are deaths that just happen, without creating the same emotional trauma and action as was the case with the death of a Sirius Black or Dumbledore, or even the death of James and Lily Potter. Even the anguish felt for Neville Longbottom’s parents’ death by Cruciatus seemed better portrayed.

Despite what a lot of J K Rowling comments may have you believe, Harry, Ron and Hermione don’t seem to have grown up as human beings/wizards. While Hermione does showcase a new set of curses and spells acquired over the summer, all the wizards are seen to be using pretty much the same set of things. I mean – If Voldemort is that powerful, he should use something beyond avada kedavra – which sounds like a poor version of Indian madari’s Abra ka dabra. It reminds me of Naruto, where the only seeming growth in Naruto’s powers after 2 years (Naruto Shippuden) is that his Rasengan (Ball of Chakra) is more controlled and bigger.

The worst thing – There is a chapter which is called “19 years later” which is a desperate attempt from JKR to close the series, once and for all. Full of clichés and expected puns, the last chapter is as pathetic as it can get.

 There are several untied parts, including the immensely grown powers of Voldemort, as against Harry, who doesnt seem to be growing any more powerful, even though the pretext is that it should have happened. Something like the growth of Neo fuelling the growth of Agent Smith in The Matrix.  Again, an analysis would reveal things about the story, which I don’t want to do!

Net net, I picked the book because I just couldn’t resist the temptation. If you can resist the temptation, then borrow it from someone who has already bought the book. It’s a good read, but not worth 900 bucks or so. I can praise and nit-pick a lot more, but that would give away significant chunks of the story.  

Endnote – Chandrakanta Santati (written by Devki Nandan Khatri) was written as a set of six books. Including Chandrakanta, that would become 7 books!  While Nirja Guleri did destroy the worth of the book to a great extent (through mindless histrionics and pathetic adaptation), I still think it’s one of the greatest serial books ever written. It’s a pity that Hindi literature does not have the same reader base in India as English literature.

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About Amit
Conventional, boring, believer, poet, Shayar (to be precise), lover of music, musical instruments, and all that can be called music (theoretically or metaphorically), jack of all master of none, more of a reader less of a writer, arbit philosopher, foolish debater.. and many more such things.. like so many people!

6 Responses to Book Review: Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows

  1. Neha says:

    neville’s parents did not die, they were driven to insanity by bellatrix

  2. I agree with you! its a great book, but too bad it ends…I feel so empty putting it down after so many years waiting for it…

  3. Amit says:

    @Ankita – not really.. I think it was a desperate finale to a book series. But I did not put the book down till I was done.. That for me is a book which is interesting enough.
    But yes.. you are entitled to your opinion 😉

    @Ashish – yes.. Chandrakanta 🙂 those idiots just made a joke out mof this great book!

  4. ashish kila says:

    nice critique on HP…

    interesting 2 read about chandrakanta
    to confess ..i did watch chandrakanta n all the fantasy serials when i was small… still remember the song …
    chandrakanta ki kahani..naugarh ..vijaygarh….:)

  5. Ankita says:

    Hmm , you have been really linient with the Book review and JKR writing style.

    ( its indeed sad , from writing style to content to basically everything)

  6. Raju says:

    Very interesting site about the Harry Potter. Its very nice information about that books . I have gone through your site and I got more information about the Harry Potter .Which are very useful to all book lovers.Recently I have visited one site which tells about the harry potter book reviews. If u want to know more about that site harry potter book review

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