Friday, July 22, 2011

Review of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)
Harry Potter has never been the star of a Quidditch team, scoring points while riding a broom far above the ground. He knows no spells, has never helped to hatch a dragon, and has never worn a cloak of invisibility.

All he knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley—a great big swollen spoiled bully. Harry's room is a tiny closet at the foot of the stairs, and he hasn't had a birthday party in eleven years.

But all that is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives by owl messenger: a letter with an invitation to an incredible place that Harry—and anyone who reads about him—will find unforgettable. For it's there that he finds not only friends, aerial sports, and magic in everything from classes to meals, but a great destiny that's been waiting for him... if Harry can survive the encounter.


Reviewing one’s all time favorite books sounds like a daunting and near impossible task, but I am going to try it anyways. However, with all of the movies coming out, I’ve been re-reading the books, and every time I read them they get better and better. If you have not read the Harry Potter series, run, don’t walk, to your nearest library or bookstore, pick up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and get ready to have your mind blown.

Rowling is a genius when it comes to world-building. I would say it’s what I love most about these novels, but they are so brilliant that’s impossible to say. Rowling has created an elaborate wizard school, but also a huge world outside where goblins work at banks and there is a ministry of magic. I mean, Hogwarts is a character in and of itself. Things like her talking about what kind of snacks her characters eat, how the mail is delivered and the poem inside of Gringotts makes it obvious how much attention she’s paid to minute details. Not only Rowling’s world incredibly well built, it’s also a world I would love to live in. The ability to do magic? Quirky snacks? Magical creatures? Um, yes please!

Harry is on the cusp of adolescence as the book begins, and I have to say that I love Harry. He has a true sense of right and wrong, even though he was brought up amongst some of the most deplorable fictional characters ever. He’s far from perfect, though, often getting himself and his friends in trouble, and that’s what I loved about him when I was young. It was great to see a teenager who was so realistic.

A lot of characters in the Harry Potter series are like onions. They are well-developed in the first book, but we see more and more layers of each of them as the series progresses. I love Hermione because she’s a bookworm. I love Ron because he can be kind of awkward, but definitely has some great witty remarks. And Fred and George crack me up every. Single. Time. What an awesome duo. If I told you about all of the characters I loved and why, we’d be here all day.

Rowling’s prose isn’t particularly literary, yet it always kept me invested in the story. She peppered in just the right amount of humor, knows how to keep the suspense running high and makes the Gryffindor common room sound incredibly cozy. I can’t pinpoint what it is I love about her writing, I just know that I love it.

I’m not sure if I’d call this a review so much as a gushfest. I could spend hours and hours honing this review and still not touch on everything I love about Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The best part is that the series only gets better from here.

Disclosure: I purchased a copy of this book. No, wait, I purchased three copies, because I am addicted.

4 comments:

  1. LOVE love LOVE this series! It's a walk down memory lane every time I see a new review of it. Definitely have to schedule a re-read of the whole series soon... ^_^

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  2. From the very first sentence, I was hooked! I love going back to re-read them because it's so fun to see all of the foreshadowing. Hagrid telling Harry that you would be mad to try and rob Gringotts, Hagrid borrowing the flying motorbike from Sirius. There are so many things!

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  3. It took me a while to read the HP series, but once I did I was addicted too. I enjoyed reading your thoughts...I love all the characters too. and yes, by all means GUSH!

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  4. People should definitely take this principle and apply it to their lives...when one is not excellent at something, he should try to excel in something else to compensate for this fault. I bet that Jo wasn't the most wonderful individual when it came to, say, accounting or math, yet she knocked everyone's socks off with er writing abilities. Ingenuity! LIVE IT!

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