Book Review: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

A bit of a break from the Web Site / Web Design posts I’ve added recently. I’ve finished reading Harry Potter, 4 days after it was released. I’m sure that is slow compared with a lot of people that spent the whole of Saturday reading the book, but for a book that’s over 600 pages that was good going for me, especially as I’ve been trying to decorate the bathroom at the same time. I think that is testament that the book is so hard to put down.

If you haven’t finished reading the book yet, then don’t worry, there are no spoilers here. It would be a great shame to find out the end before actually reading it as it’s a very dramatic story.

The story builds up more slowly than the other books. Whereas in the earlier books you were thrown into the action from the very beginning in the Half-Blood Prince most of the book is laying the foundations of the story. That’s not to say that it’s boring, it still has a lot of little bits of action to keep the story interesting; but nothing over dramatic. This makes the book more enjoyable as you are trying to work out the plot to the story:

  • Who is the Half-Blood Prince?
  • What is the task in the unbreakable vow?
  • Whose side is the double agent really on?
  • What is the machine / device that needs repairing?

Most of this remains a mystery until the last 5 chapters, when the book suddenly comes to life with some very tense action. With perhaps the best written, most dramatic chapter of any book I’ve ever read.

Most people that have read the other books will have already got a copy of the Half-Blood Prince, just to follow the story. If however you have not read any of the Harry Potter books, then I suggest you get a copy of Harry Potter and the Phylosophers Stone and find out for yourself. The book may be written for children, but as long as you have a good imagination it works equally well for adults.

It seams that everything that is successful attracts criticism and J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter is no exception. Whilst it may have become a very commercial aspect especially with the films, the fact is that the books do encourage children to read, and that has to be a good thing. If you’ve seen the films, but not read the book, then it’s well worth reading the books anyway. It may no longer have some of the suspense, but there is a lot more depth to the books than they had time to include in the films.