Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling

Harry Potter braces for his final battle with evil Lord Voldemort, knowing that only one of them will survive.

My biggest criticism of Harry Potter has always been his passivity. In the first few books especially, he spends most of his time being rescued or protected, simply because he’s “The Boy Who Lived.” And for awhile, it seemed as though JK Rowling wasn’t paying attention–was creating a hero who didn’t deserve to bear that name.

In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Rowling finally brings Harry to a reckoning: with his past, his destiny, and with his responsibility for the human cost that’s been paid to protect him. Finally, Harry wakes up to the body count, and it’s for that reason that the climax had the power to move me to tears.

Even more exciting is the way that Rowling humanizes all her characters. She brings an unanticipated depth to paternal, heroic Dumbledore, proving that she knows that there’s more complexity to goodness than just adulation bestowed by naive children. She also settles the Snape question in a most thrilling and satisfying way, delivering much, much more than a simple, black and white answer to a plot question that’s haunted the series.

And as for black and white questions… well, I promised no spoilers, and I keep my promises. All I will say is this: I harbored a secret hope that JK Rowling knew a better answer to “Does Harry Live?” than just “yes” or “no.”

Rowling delivered.

Thank you for a fantastic ride. Please create another world for us.

7 thoughts on “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling”

  1. I agree… This is one of the best series endings I have ever seen.

    Of course, along with passivity, Harry is famous for his incurious nature and sometimes dull moments. He does continue his streak of not thinking of answers right in front of his nose.

  2. Hey Superfast, knew I could count on you to be the first person I know to read the final HP book.

    I’m glad you mentioned the “passivity” and Fleiger, I agree about that “incurious” nature. I really do love the books and the world Rowling created, but there were times I wanted to shake Harry and say, what the heck? Why so passive?

    On another note, Superfast, I’m killing 2 birds with one stone on this week’s Thursday 13. I told Poodlerat I’d do a book reading commitment, so I’m asking 13 people to add a book to my reading list.

    So far I’ve got:

    The Time Traveler’s Wife

    Please add a book to my list!

    If I have not read the book you recommend, I promise I will read it by the end of the year. Pick something from your top 10. Again, this is fiction (I read plenty of non-fiction).

    P.S. Don’t add Harry Potter because I’ll read that regardless (and before real spoilers DO get out).

  3. Don’t worry, I’m not going to recommend War & Peace… though it is AMAZING 🙂

    I’ll give you 3 to choose from, all of which have been reviewed on this blog–just use “search” in the sidebar.

    1) A Dark-Adapted Eye by Barbara Vine
    2) Fifth Business by Robertson Davies
    3) Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson

    Will you be posting your final selection on your blog?

  4. Hey, thanks. Some friends are having trouble making up their minds, so I may use 2 of yours. Never read any of them.

    Yes, I will post the final list tomorrow on my Thursday 13.

    I really like getting “assigned” books. I couldn’t create my own reading list, just too many darn books to choose from out there.

  5. I would have read War and Peace had you assigned it, so thanks for not doing it…

    The list is up on my blog and I’m excited about it! I like being assigned books to read. So much easier to pick that way!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *