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Harry Potter Spoiler Post 
25th-Jul-2007 11:53 am
I finished the book.

Things I did not like:

- slow. slow slow slow slow slow. Epic journey as plot device bored me to tears when Stephen King did it, and JKR, though very talented, is no Stephen King. Was it really necessary to drag things out until May, just to match the school year?
- the epilogue. I want to know what happened afterwards. What were they doing in those 19 years, did everyone who'd left Hogwarts go back to school the next year and finish up, did they just graduate people figuring that fighting a war was good enough, who raised Teddy, etc?
- killing Dobby. Was that really necessary?
- ditto for Hedwig.
- how Tonks was kept off screen to make a baby the whole book (I would start muttering about how women are treated in these books, but people are going to tell me it's just a kid's book and to get over it, so. :) And other people have done that muttering much better than I could.) But, seriously, I liked Tonks a lot, and she could have played a much bigger role in this book. And then she gets killed off, and we don't even get to see how? Feh.

Things I did like:

- how Ron and Hermione were developed. Mostly off screen, very subtle, even though we all knew they were going to end up together. Very nice.
- Dumbledore became a lot more human, and a lot more believable. I still want to be him upside the head, but, his plans worked out and the world was saved, so.
- Harry being the last Horcrux. I'd thought that, if that did happen, was going to be dumb, but it was very nicely played.
- Neville. Neville fracking rocked, and I wish he'd gotten more screen time.
- Ron. Ron found his smarts, this book, and was lovely.
- Snape. I've never liked Snape, and I still don't particularly like Snape - and we're not supposed to, I don't think. He's a selfish bastard ("You don't care about her husband and son, you only care about getting what you want...") But Harry is right - he was a very very brave man, because ultimately, he did good things, even when his basic nature didn't want him to. He wasn't necessarily a good man, but he was brave enough to be good when the world needed him to be. He didn't deserve to die like he did.
- Kreacher. :) And the house elves in general, helping lead the revolt at the end, stabbing Death Eaters in the ankles.
- McGonagall.
- Luna. She was useful and valuable in small ways, and not just comic relief. I wish she'd shown up in the epilogue.
- the action scenes, which were in general very well done. I'm not normally a HP movie person, but I'll see this one, for the wedding and the action scenes.
- the big at the end, where Voldemort kept telling them to surrender and he would spare them, and they all kept telling him to go to hell, and in the room of requirement, where Dumbledore's Army wouldn't not let Harry help him. A lot of these books is about the power of friendship and group efforts, and those were good bits.

Overall, there was more to like than dislike. :) I'm not a screaming HP fangirl, and I have issues with the books, so I more than likely won't be re-reading the whole series ever again, but it was a decent ending and an enjoyable read.

Side note, I was over at the financial aid office yesterday, starting the first Harry Dresden book while I waited, and then next guy in line sees what I'm reading and says "So, finished Harry Potter yet?" :) It was a fair guess, and we chatted about the book for a minute, and then he said something like "Well, at least Harry has been walking around and stunning people and stuff, but man, he hasn't been using killing curses yet, and I can't believe it." Dude, have you even been reading the same books as the rest of us? Harry wouldn't do that, that's the whole point. That was weird.

So, now that I'm done and have HP out of my system, I can work on finishing the other three books and two audiobooks I'm in the middle of. And, oh, maybe do some homework.
25th-Jul-2007 04:18 pm (UTC)
I was kind of surprised when Harry did go around throwing Imperius on every third person.
25th-Jul-2007 05:46 pm (UTC)
25th-Jul-2007 06:11 pm (UTC)
Desperate times, and all that?

I don't know. It didn't bother me; I felt like he was growing up a bit and realizing sometimes you have to do things that just aren't good. But, I didn't want him to be too bad either; if he'd killed even one person in the book, I wouldn't have liked it.
(Deleted comment)
25th-Jul-2007 06:15 pm (UTC)
No kidding. A pet and companion of 6 years is going to be mourned more than that, even in the middle of the clusterfuck that that night was. I understand it would have been inconvenient to have her travel with them on the Endless Forrest Tromp of Doom, but still. :)
25th-Jul-2007 11:38 pm (UTC)
Agreed. I actually liked that Hedwig and Dobby died, because they were the only deaths I actually felt strongly about (and I still can't quite believe she managed to make me teary-eyed over Dobby dying!) -- Lupin and Tonks' deaths were kind of... enh, and Fred, my main reaction was, "Yeah, I saw *that* one coming." But really, there could have been more mourning of Hedwig. I mean, Dobby got *way* more mourning than she did.
25th-Jul-2007 08:36 pm (UTC)
- killing Dobby. Was that really necessary?

Yes. Yes, it was.

I really hate that Tonks, an initially rather cool character who has loads of potential eventually became nothing but a plot point for the creation of Harry's ward. She was there to drop a kid and die. Ah well. It was a war, after all. *grumble*

Did you not like Mrs. Weasley's Ripley moment?
25th-Jul-2007 11:38 pm (UTC)
Totally agree with you about Dobby and Tonks (see my above comment, which I should have placed here instead :) )
27th-Jul-2007 10:31 am (UTC) - Weasley's Ripley Moment
27th-Jul-2007 11:48 pm (UTC)
I looooved Mrs. Weasley's Ripley moment.
27th-Jul-2007 11:57 pm (UTC)
I agree with you on a lot of points. I was wondering about who raised Teddy, too. And yes, Hedwig was given a bit of a brush-off.

I did cry (almost) when Dobby died. I didn't expect that. As a houself, he was always expected to make sacrifices for his masters. As a free elf, he willingly sacrificed himself to save Harry. I think that was his moral lesson - the value of life. The lives of houseleves were generally dispensible, and yet because of his devotion to Harry, due to Harry's kindess to him, he willingly died to save him. In turn, Rowling showed the value of all life--even those not valued by the rest of society--by having all of them mourn him extensively and create such a peaceful burial for him. Also, she wrote the death scene so that it would really tug the reader's hearts. Which it did, mine.

Hedwig wasn't mourned as much because she wasn't a symbol of the value of a life.

Is this coherent enough?
28th-Jul-2007 12:04 am (UTC)
Actually, I would like to hear your thoughts on how women were treated in the book. Please? Thank you.
30th-Jul-2007 06:52 pm (UTC)
In general, it seems to me that women in the HP books are treated as either bearers or protectors of children, and that they're shoved out of the limelight for the guys. Hermione is the only woman who manages to have a significant role not related to her kids, and she's not of age yet. Mrs. Weasley spends seven books making sweaters, cooking, and fretting over her children, Tonks goes from this badass auror to spending book 7 off stage having a kid, McDongall, while very cool, seems to operate in What Would Dumbledore Do mode, and the rest of the women are Evil. :) I doubt it was deliberate; more likely, Rowling was just writing was seemed natural to her and it subconsciously came out like that, ya know?
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