Saturday, June 4, 2016

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets Re-Read

As I've mentioned I'm in the process of re-reading the Harry Potter series before the script for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is released. I just finished Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets which I have always referred to as one of my two least favorite books out of them all. The other being Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Usually, I only refer to these two as my least favorites whenever somebody asks which one is my favorite because those are the only two I can rule at as not being my favorite. However, they still have a special place in my heart. One of my goals with this re-read of the series, though, is to finally choose a favorite. Who knows if that will actually be accomplished though. I think the problem is more like when you've been a Harry Potter fan for 80% of your life you have different favorites at different stages of life. Same goes for Disney princesses. Anyway onto the re-read!

Some new realizations I had and little things I noticed while re-reading Chamber of Secrets:
- Rowling does foreshadowing really well. It's almost like she's trolling you when you go back and read these. I noticed that Dumbledore tells Harry exactly what he needs to know about Fawkes' powers way before the chapter that takes place in the chamber.
- I got unreasonably angry about how Hagrid was treated during this re-read. It was proven that he didn't open the chamber when he was at Hogwarts so in my opinion he should have at least been given his wand back. People should have known it wasn't him anyways. His dad was a wizard and his mom was a giant. How likely would it have been that he was Slytherin's heir? I mean really.
- It also struck me more than normal how hard poor Ginny really had it during her first year. The thing about reading Harry Potter as a young child is that the characters are still older than you so you don't process that they're actually still really young and are putting up with the crap that they do. Reading this now, if I were Mr. or Mrs. Weasley I would be having her go to St. Mungo's for some magical therapy. That's for damn sure. Poor Ginny.
- In the same vein. Ginny and Harry make so much more sense than I realize. Only the two of them have been so deeply affected by Voldemort messing with their mind. I mean Ron and Hermione get a taste of that in Deathly Hallows from the locket but not on such a long-lasting level. They take turns carrying the burden at least. Harry and Ginny could both totally have PTSD from this. Ginny's mind has been so utterly violated and she is only an 11-year-old girl! *shudder*

My final verdict?
I'm loving getting back to the wizarding world but it is so much darker than I ever remember it being. I guess I just never really noticed as a kid. I appreciate Chamber of Secrets so much more than I ever have. However, it will probably never be my favorite. Maybe the darkness is what put me off from Chamber of Secrets in the past. I can't wait for Prisoner of Azkaban now though. I feel that PoA is such a lighter read. It may be a real contender for favorite HP book.

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