After a popular parish council member drops dead from an aneurysm, the bucolic English town of Pagford comes undone over fears about how a new council member might upset the balance of power with the encroachment of council flats from the next town over.
I always enjoy a complicated soap opera and I appreciated how deftly Rowling wove all the story lines together. It didn’t take me long to get everyone sorted out, even though the relationships were pretty tangled. I do have to admit that the main reason I read it was out of curiosity, to see what else Rowling has up her sleeve. And this book is certainly a departure on just about every level. I was left a little cold by the ending and I’m not sure how long it will stick with me.
A collection of traditional wizarding fairy tales translated by Hermione Granger and annotated by Albus Dumbledore–with an introduction by JK Rowling.
Why couldn’t Beedle the Bard be twice as long? I loved these stories, which read just like “real” fairy tales, but with a spin that marks them as belonging to the world of Harry Potter and friends. What could be a clever gimmick works because the stories themselves work even if you know nothing of Harry Potter. They’re classic in their execution despite their revisionist elements, reminding me of The Practical Princess, a favorite of mine from childhood.
Each story comes with a fusty commentary from Albus Dumbledore. Usually I don’t care for these kids of postmodern tropes, but here it worked because the commentary added a layer of resonance to the Harry Potter story. There was humor and insight–and it was great to hear from Dumbledore again!
Thanks to Superfast Brother for getting this for me for Christmas!
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. Continue reading →
I want to start a conversation about what readers think are the books that no child should be without. I’m building a library for Superfast Baby, and here are my 10 must haves for boys and 10 must haves for girls: