Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

2007
07.24

Deathly HallowsOh, Harry, I’m gonna miss ya.

Like the rest of the country, I’ve been holed up with HP7 for the last few days, dying to know what happened to the Hogwarts crew, while simultaneously hoping this last helping of Harry would never end. I’ve not reviewed any of Harry’s adventures on RR before, as the books are so popular and well known, that there would have been little I could add to the enormous body of critical writing that already surrounds the best-selling series. But with the end of a series that has captivated teen imagination for as long as RR has been on the ‘net, I feel moved to add my two cents at last. In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry continues the quest that he and Dumbledore began in Half-Blood Prince: find the remaining horcruxes that contained the tattered remnants of Voldemort’s black soul and destroy them. Joined by Ron and Hermione, Harry and his two BFFs try and puzzle out the obscure clues left them by Dumbledore about where to find the remaining cursed curios. In addition, Harry learns about a trio of objects known as The Deathly Hallows that, possessed together, are rumored to be able to defeat the Grim Reaper himself. Are these objects related to Harry’s quest? Can he use them to destroy the horcruxes? Or are they just a false trail laid by Dumbledore to confound Voldemort, who is hot on Harry’s tail? I can say little more without spoiling the ending for all four of the folks who haven’t read it yet, even though some eager beavers have already posted the entire plot summary on Wikipedia.

Though the outcome of the final tome is often in doubt, one thing remains constant—its length. Like it’s predecessors, Deathly Hallows is a doorstop of 759 pages. And I have to say, about 500 of those pages felt like filler. But when the action comes, it comes hard and fast and violent, and several key players in the Harry Potter epic (not unsurprisingly) lose theirlives. I’ll admit, I shed a tear or two. But, the ending, o the ending! Finally, finally ALL is revealed, including the most hotly debated topic since the end of Book 6: whose side is Snape really on? Suffice it say it was an immensely satisfying conclusion, with an epilogue that some may find a bit sentimental, but one I thoroughly bought into. Mostly because it was just really, really hard to tell such a good friend good-bye. I suppose I’ll just have to order up all the audio books (which I’ve heard are stupendous) and start all over again! I hope you’ll do me the honor of posting some of YOUR Harry Potter remembrances and reviews here on RR. At some point, comments may contain spoilers, so be aware of that fact before clicking on through!

Now, what on earth is J.K. Rowling going to do with all her free time??

25 Responses to “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling”

  1. Mike Grimm says:

    500 pages filler?? No way!! OK, some of it, but not that much. Besides, I kind of liked the slower sections to catch a breath after the action. And yes, the ending may be a tad sentimental, but I was really glad she decided to end it that way. A great wrap-up to the series, which I reread during the last few weeks in preparation for the finale.

    Mike

  2. Jen Hubert says:

    Hi Mike,

    yes, I knew I was going to take some hits for that “filler” comment, but that has been my gripe since book 5, which seemed vastly overblown for no good reason. I know teens don’t mind long books, guess I’m just reading like a grown-up!

  3. Erin says:

    I also disagree with the filler statement. I think that what you call filler, I would call world-making. It’s Rowling continued attention to detail that make these stories so rich and compelling. Sure, we could have had a 200 page book filled with action, but would you have felt as close to the characters or shed any tears when they died. Rowling doesn’t just tell you a story, she takes her time and invites you inside the world she has created. This was an incredibly satisying end to an amazing series… though I’m not quite ready to leave it behind. I started reading it again immediatly. :)

  4. Walter Mayes says:

    My son, Anthony, has grown up reading these. He is 18 now, and his comments on the final book are as follows (I, of course, have no opinion about the book, one way or the other, what with committee responsibilities):

    “She had her cake and ate it, too.”

    “She makes up her own rules as she goes along.”

    “She monologues too much–Harry monologued through the last third of the book.”

    “Of all the possible endings, that is the one I would have preferred the least. Still, totally knew why she did it.”

    And he LIKED the book!

  5. Jen Hubert says:

    Hi Walter!

    Thanks for adding some teen commentary, it is much appreciated. I honestly believed that she might have the guts to pull off the ending no one wanted at the crucial point when Harry walked alone in the woods towards Voldemort. Doesn’t mean I didn’t like the ending I got, but man, I would have respected the heck out of her if she had dared to do the unthinkable.

    On another note, I heard you were playing Hagrid all weekend;) I can only imagine…:)

    Thanks for writing in, I was hoping you’d show up.

  6. Meg Schneider says:

    I totally agree with Walter Meyer’s son’s comments…

    she makes up the rules to her “world”…that really annoyed me. It was like watching a 4 hour mystery trying to piece together clues, only to realize that the ending was totally out of the blue.

    Like, it would have made a lot more sense if the book had just ended with SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER Harry giving himself up.

    I thought it was entertaining though

  7. Em says:

    At first I was a felt that the middle of the book dragged a bit. But after I finished reading the book and had time to think about it, I realized that JK is truly a literary genius. If the middle has been action packed, Ron’s desertion would not have felt real. Just as Ron was getting fed up with the slow pace of the Horcrux hunt, JK slowed the pace of the book down so that we, as readers, were just as frustrated. However, let’s talk about Ginny’s role. I was so disappointed that she was such a minor character in this book! It seemed like her character was being built up in Books 5 & 6 and I at least expected her to vanquish some evil death eater in Book 7. Or perhaps put a Bat-Bogey Hex on Voldemort. :-)

  8. Jen Hubert says:

    Hi Em,

    agreed that Ginny didn’t really get a chance to shine. And I don’t argue that the middle had to be action-packed, but it sure could have been SHORTER. But I sense I’m alone on this;)

  9. Stacy says:

    I friggin’ loved every minute and every word of it. I did. And I still love Snape. So there.

    Book 5 dragged. This one, not so much.

  10. Jen Hubert says:

    Hmm, I would argue that the reason this one didn’t drag as much as book 5 is because we were all so eager to get to the end that we didn’t care. I can’t believe that everyone loved the endless section of Harry, Ron and Hermione traveling from dreary forest to mountain to valley, “as the days turned into weeks and the weeks into months.” I mean, why not give Voldemort MORE time to raise a huge army of Deatheaters!

    I should just give it up–I can see JK has won everyone over, especially with that gift of an epilogue.

  11. Reader #N says:

    I found it a bite long at the begining, till the apparition of the silver Doe in the dean Forest, then it became interesting and thrilling, in my opinion

  12. Teen Troves says:

    If you do decide to revisit all the HP books I would HIGHLY reccommend the audiobooks. I didn’t start the books till after I’d seen the first two movies, but I just couldn’t get into them because I already knew what was coming. I’d heard how wonderful the audiobooks were supposed to be so I decided to try ‘em out. I’m so glad I did! Jim Dale, the narrator, really brings the world alive. The audiobooks would be a great investment!

    I stretched my listening of the last book way out….it was the last time I would be hearing a new HP adventure…..so sad!

  13. Jen Hubert says:

    Okay, I’m beginning to feel a little vindicated…here is a quote from Stephen King’s review of the last HP and the series in general:

    “Are the books perfect? Indeed not. Some sections are too long. In Deathly Hallows, for instance, there’s an awful lot of wandering around and camping in that tent; it starts to feel like Ms. Rowling running out the clock on the school year to fit the format of the previous six books.”

    You can read the whole wonderful article here:

    http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20044270_20044274_20050689,00.html

  14. Lizzie says:

    Neville should of married Luna.
    Neville is a BAMF.
    nuff said

  15. Bethanie says:

    I knew Snape was good all along. ^_^

  16. Sara says:

    It was fasely rumored that the last word in the book was scar. I loved the ending even though I found my own alternate ending. “Rocks fall and everyone dies, scar.”

  17. Samantha says:

    I heard they are officialy making a prequel it comes out in August and i can not wait!I think with out Snape the series would not be half as good as what it is even if I do not like Snape.:)

  18. Madison says:

    Ah, my favourite book of all time from my favourite series. I can’t even figure why I like this one the best. Is it only because it’s the finale?
    Afterall, even though I disagree that there was 500 pages (that’s a lot of pages) of filler, I do think that while reading I was like, “oh, no, not another forest” and “what is the big deal with the hallows?”. But in the end, it all gets tied in pretty nicely, and though some may say they found some parts draggy, I found that the action bits put in between made up for it. Like the Ministry, Malfoy Manor etc. and, of course, the Battle of Hogwarts. There were just so many darn horcruxes to distroy in a single book, so it was to be expected.
    It had a totally different feel without the trio as oblivious students begging adults to give them info (mostly Harry). Everything was more serious.
    I was ecstatic that Snape was finally vindicated, and ha, to all those fans who liked the idea of a Lily/Snape connection, they were right! Fanfiction might not always be so far from canon…
    I also like the Remus & Remus/Tonks bit. Though how it ended up…
    My favourite character has always been Ron, I was so freaked for a bit when he left.
    I’m really sad that the series has ended but happy that it ended well.

  19. Abby says:

    Okay so while I love the series and the HP Universe in general.. this book sadly fell short of the others (in my opinion anyways) did anyone else find this last book a bit predictable, I definitely did.

  20. Angel says:

    Personally, Harry Potter is my favorite series. And this last one was my favorite. But I agree there was a lot of slow, filler, stuff. I remember reading it the day it came out, and kept thinking, “I’m so tired, but I need to finish” At the part right before the ministry and the other part was before malfoy manor right after ron came back. But I like how when things are slow for awhile, when you think its safe, something bad happens out of no where.

    The action though, my gosh! Amazing! I love the Battle and Molly’s not so nice scentence made me laugh.

    Overall, I thought it was a really good book and throughout the series, I thought, tought some valuble life lessons. Awesome book! Sad to see it end but it was a nice ending I thought.

  21. Erica T says:

    hi, i am a big fan of your books JK , though i have not read #7, i adore all the rest #6 was awsome! i just finished it. i am typing from school and the bell just rang so g2g by!

  22. Shenandoah Boyd says:

    Hey Lizzie,

    Yes they should have and yes he most definitely IS a BAMF! :D

    Soooo anywaaayy……

    I read the 1st book in like 2nd grade and this series is what I accredit to actually turning me into the bookaholic I am today….

    umm…..No I don’t think I’ll ramble on and on about my opinion of the series and such….that would take hours….

    So I’ll just say this:
    The HP series is amazing.
    aaaaaannnnnnnd….!
    NITWIT!!! BLUBBER!!! ODDMENT!!! TWEAK!!!!!!!!! :D

  23. Kay says:

    I read this book in 2 days, its soo amazing. and I looved the epilouge at the end :)

  24. Josh Johnson says:

    OK, I thought HP7 was ah-mazing! I’m a huge book addict, and I’ve read this book about 4 times now, and I dont feel that any of the pages are filler. I loved the character dynamic between Harry, Ron, and Hermione. All of the experiences in this book tested their frienship so much, and I know this is really corny, but it made them even better friends!
    And I also felt that there was a perfect balance of action, fun dialogue, and those tear-jerker moments. Overall this book was amazing and the epilogue was SO touching!!

  25. Trina says:

    i love the way J. K. created a whole world, history everything. its sooo much better than twilight (though thats good too) which kinda stole the scene. l loved the last book, all god knows how many pages of it. i didn’t think there was that much filler. i don’t care about it, i just want the book to go on for as long as possible! heard she’s writing an encyclopedia now, so i cant wait for that to come out. i hate it when series end, and you know you wont be hearing much more from the characters.
    i agree, neville and luna should have got together. they were perfect for easch other.

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