Book Review: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

As I finish up the Harry Potter series of reviews, we come to the second last book in the series: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.

If you want to read my other reviews on the series, you can find them here:

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Title: Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
Author: J.K. Rowling
Rating: ★★★☆☆
Page Count: 652

The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Ron scans the obituary pages of the Daily Prophet, looking for familiar names. Dumbledore is absent from Hogwarts for long stretches of time, and the Order of the Phoenix has already suffered losses.

And yet . . .

As in all wars, life goes on. The Weasley twins expand their business. Sixth-year students learn to Apparate – and lose a few eyebrows in the process. Teenagers flirt and fight and fall in love. Classes are never straightforward, through Harry receives some extraordinary help from the mysterious Half-Blood Prince.

So it’s the home front that takes center stage in the multilayered sixth installment of the story of Harry Potter. Here at Hogwarts, Harry will search for the full and complete story of the boy who became Lord Voldemort – and thereby find what may be his only vulnerability.


Another Story-less book

This is the second book in the Harry Potter series that really doesn’t have a lot to do with the main story. The other is the Prisoner of Azkaban.

Half Blood Prince has more to do with the overall Harry Potter story, with Horcruxes being introduced and Dumbledore dying.

I feel like without most of this book, the story wouldn’t change too much. The same plot points could have been introduced in other books, and at least 75 per cent could have been removed.


Harry is Still Useless

I will always argue that Harry isn’t a good wizard. He doesn’t really excel at much other than flying on a broom.

He isn’t particularly gifted and he needs a lot of help with pretty much everything he does. Without his friends and mentors, Harry would have been dead half way through book one if it wasn’t for his friends helping him.

He has some interesting moments in the series, but more often that not, he defeats his enemies because of some magical abilities or a plot device.


This World Makes no Sense

There is this job in the Harry Potter world called an Auror correct? They are tasked with being the magic police basically, right? Am I wrong in remembering that?

How is it that an entire world’s worth of Aurors and wizards can’t root out Voldemort’s whereabouts and stop him and his allies?

I get they are infiltrated and you can’t really trust a lot of people, but Death Eaters seem to be fairly well-known. Couldn’t they be arrested?

It seems like there is a lot of plot holes in the world that don’t make a lot of sense.

It doesn’t necessarily make the book bad, but when you think about the rest of the world, it doesn’t add up.


Final Thoughts

This is a mediocre book in the series. The only interesting part of the book is the last 10-20 per cent, where Harry and Dumbledore hunt for the locket.

The series reaches its ultimate finale after this book, and though this one is a bit on the boring side, it’s title is even worse. The “Half Blood Prince” ultimately leads to a pointless conclusion that has zero effect on the story.


What were your thoughts on the Half Blood Prince? Let’s talk about it in the comments or on social media!
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10 Bookstagram Accounts I Follow

Hello dear readers, I want to share some of my Instagram life with you today. I’ve been struggling with growing my Instagram followers. I don’t have an eye for design and style, so my pictures are mediocre.

I do like looking at other people’s nice pictures and discussing books with them.

So, because I am trying to share my Instagram world, you, my dear readers, get to see some of my favourite instagram accounts I follow.

I follow a lot of beautiful accounts, so this in no way is my 10 favourite, just 10 that I thought were exceptional and happened to be at the top of the list of accounts I follow.

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@Lauren.bodiford


@anerdybookbirdy


@bookish.coffee


@jenjenreviews


@reading.with.emma


@thewritereads


@sabinesbooknook


@weeziereads


@successfullybooked


@bluedeskbooks


A Fitting Romance: Prodigy by Marie Lu Review

Title: Prodigy
Author: Marie Lu
Rating: ★★★★☆

Hello my fellow Prodigies, we’re looking at Book #2 of the Legend Series by Marie Lu today. This series was one I fell in love with back in high school, and enjoyed thoroughly. I followed up with it till the end, and I am happy to share my thoughts with you today.

Injured and on the run, it has been seven days since June and Day barely escaped Los Angeles and the Republic with their lives. Day is believed dead having lost his own brother to an execution squad who thought they were assassinating him. June is now the Republic’s most wanted traitor. Desperate for help, they turn to the Patriots – a vigilante rebel group sworn to bring down the Republic. But can they trust them or have they unwittingly become pawns in the most terrifying of political games?

Now it has been some time since I read this book, but there was one thing that I remember sticking out to me. I read it during the time when The Hunger Games, Maze Runner, and all the other Young Adult series were really taking off, but Prodigy stood out to me.

It wasn’t as simple as an exciting book, filled with teens getting into insane action packed fights, doing death defying stunts, and saving the world.

It was characters, solving the puzzles and hardships of their environments, trying to make it a better place. It was much deeper rooted than kids with bows and arrows, its dilemmas and principles at the forefront of the conflict. It’s making that hard choice in order to do what you think is right.

That’s what makes Prodigy so brilliant.

Prodigy doesn’t fall prey to being a sequel, which too often don’t live up to expectations. Prodigy doesn’t just live at the same level of Legend, it exceeds it. Prodigy goes deeper, and doesn’t pull its punches.


There is also the very obvious romance. Sometimes romance can ruin a book. It’s forced, or poorly executed, or unnecessary.

With Prodigy, it seems more natural. It seems like it belongs. Day and June don’t fall in love because of circumstance. That is a factor, but they fall in love, because of the chemistry they have. They see the world from two sides of the same coin.

They each grew up in different worlds, but they both analyze their environments, process the information, and come to their own conclusions.

Day and June are so similar. You could probably mistake the two of them at times, but the two different worlds they lived in makes their connection that much stronger.


What did you think of Prodigy? If you haven’t read it, it’s a great YA book to read that has a bit of action and romance mixed together.
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When Your Computer Has A Mind of Its Own

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Title: 2001: A Space Odyssey
Rating: ★★★★☆
Author: Arthur C. Clark

I got through 2001: A Space Odyssey pretty quick, and it was never boring. I was actually surprised at what happened at a few times in the book.

When a book has “Space” and “Odyssey” in the title, you probably assume laser gun fights, space ships blasting off into space, and alien life forms with five eyes and four legs.

Now this book has a space ship, it has alien life forms, but does not have laser gun fights.

But, the book actually starts with a bunch of cavemen, and it was honestly some of the best writing I have ever read.

The simplicity in the cavemen’s thoughts and actions and their interactions with the alien life forms.


When we do finally get into the “modern” story line, I love that we get to see the advanced society that humans are living in, in a time that is before our time.

The story takes place in the early 2000s, and they have a more advanced society than we do in some ways, but in others it is similar.

We follow two astronauts in their trip into deep space with their trust AI computer to help them.

You can imagine what happens…the computer rises up and tries to take control of the ship.

This part of the book is the only reason I didn’t give it a five-star rating. I wanted more of a build up of tension. I wanted there to be more of a conflict between man and machine…but instead it was over just as quickly as it started.

Keir Dullea in a scene from the film ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’, 1968. (Photo by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images)

We don’t get the build up, the conflict, and the resolution that I was hoping for. It’s not that the writing is bad. I was captivated through the entire book, it just didn’t seem quite complete.

The end of the story was interesting, and though I think it lead the story in an interesting direction, it really split it up into three very distinct parts.

Theres a beauty to a short story. It tells you an entire story, but it leaves you wanting more. It leaves you incomplete, but yet complete at the same time.

2001: A Space Odyssey has a similar feel to it, but I’d say its a step below. To put it in simple terms, a good short story tells ~50% of a story, and leaves the rest to your imagination. This book would more accurately be ~75% of a story. It tells you a lot, but it’s not quite in either category.


What did you think of 2001: A Space Odyssey? Let’s chat in the comments. Look for a review of the movie this weekend.
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My Oldest Books

Hello dear readers, you’re in for a treat today whether you like it or not, because today I am going to share the oldest books that I own!

Most of my books are from this century. Even if it was a book written before 2000, I probably have a modern version of it.

There are a few exceptions however, but before I show them to you, I’m going to tease you a bit more.

When I went to University, every few weeks there would be this man that would show up with hundreds of used books for sale.

He’d get these books at garage sales, other book stores, estate sales, or even from people who left their large collections to him in their will.

He had recent books, he had old books, he had books everyone has heard of, and he had books that you’ll never hear the name of again.

I probably spent way too much money on his books, at a time when I definitely couldn’t afford it, but I’m a sucker for a book sale.

I didn’t buy these two books together, but when I did buy them, my friend and I were having a competition to see who could find the older book.

My friend is currently winning, unfortunately, but I haven’t given up hope yet.

BUT

Without further adieu ladies and gentlefolk…here are my oldest books!

These two were only from the 1970s, but they’re on the older end of things for me.


1921 was a good year for Tennyson Poems, and I love the texture of the cover too!


And last, and definitely the oldest book in my collection…More Tennyson poems from 1893!


What’s your oldest book? I’d love to see it if you’re willing to share.
Show me in the comments or on social media.
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Book Review: Bullets, Teeth & Fists 3

Title: Bullets, Teeth & Fists 3
Author: Jason Beech
Rating: 4 / 5

She’s heavily pregnant. She’s handcuffed to a pipe. The clock is ticking.Belle, the heavily pregnant wife of an important man, is bundled into the back of a car, held against her will, and cuffed to a pipe in an abandoned apartment … and her waters are about to break.Belle is desperate for her baby girl to survive and live a better life than she ever had. All she has to do is get one of her kidnappers onside. All her husband has to do is pay the ransom.Will he?The latest in the Bullets series is here – 20 exciting, violent, and sometimes heartbreaking short stories of noir and pulp fiction. Put your gloves on, it’s bloody round here.

I’ve never read a book with a title quite like this one before, but I got basically what I expected out of it. When you find a book called Bullets, Teeth & Fists, you expect a character struggling and fighting to their absolute last breath…and I wasn’t disappointed.

I was sent this book as a part of a blog tour by Blackthorn Book Tours, and it was my first blog tour with them. I think this is actually the first “horror” book I’ve read through and reviewed, and I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest.

Bullets, Teeth, & Fists is a collection of short stories, and they aren’t what you expect from your normal horror stories. Some make the hairs on the back of your neck crawl straight up in an instant, while others keep you up at night with a sense of dread hanging over you.

I’m not sure if one story stood out on its own as something amazing, or as one I will remember for a long time, but instead the entire books makes your skin crawl from start to finish, and I mean it in a good way.



There was one aspect of this book that really made me enjoy it though, and that was the lack of answers.

Some stories in the book tell you what you want to hear. You get the ending, whether you want it or not.

Some stories you don’t. You don’t get the ending you wanted, or didn’t want. You get nothing, except you imagination wondering how it all ended.

Each story is very well written. Sometimes there is more detail than you wanted, but you’re never wanting for more.

Each of the characters are well written, even if it is hard to follow them at times.


Some of the stories have characters with the same name, and at first I was confused because I thought it was the same person.

I’m not sure why that decision was made, but in my opinion it wasn’t a good one. It just seemed sort of odd that you would include the same names for characters in the book.

The book itself could have used another round of proofreading. as there were several typos. This took away from the story a bit, but it was still enjoyable as a whole.


I definitely recommend Bullets, Teeth, & Fists 3 to anyone who likes the dark and gritty stories. It’s definitely not for the faint of heart.

Let’s connect on social media so we can talk about it!
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AudioBook Review: Outlander

I have said before that it is a rare occurrence for a TV show or movie to be better than the book, but Outlander is one of those books that might just be an exception.

I had binge watched most of the TV show in a few weeks, knowing that there was a related book series, but I didn’t really feel like I had the time to start another series of books since I already had a few going at the time.

I had a free audio book that I could download, and I figured Outlander would be a good choice of book, and I am happy I was right.

Despite being a fantastic book, that the TV show is very similar to, I think an audiobook was a good call for Outlander, because the woman who was reading the story had a nice accent, and did a good job changing her voice slightly depending on who was speaking.

This is one of the few audiobooks I have listened to, but each one I listen to makes me love the medium more and more.


In terms of how the book actually was, I thought it was well written, very descriptive, and historically accurate (from my small understanding of that period in history).

I think when doing a historical fiction piece, it is important to get some level of accuracy, and I think Diana Gabaldon did a great job of writing about the period and the characters.

I haven’t read too many historical fiction pieces before, but I thought that I could really understand the period and the society that Gabaldon writes about in Outlander.

I haven’t learned a lot of this period in history, but I have done some research after watching the TV show, and from what I can tell Outlander is pretty spot on to what I could have expected.


Gabaldon’s writing style has caused her to quickly cracked my Top 10 favourite authors even though I only listened to one of her books.

I find her descriptive writing to be captivating enough that I can see myself in the story, but not overbearing that it becomes a grind getting through different scenes.

I think there is a time and place for overly descriptive writing. I think George R.R. Martin does a good job of it, but he is one of the few people that I have read that was able to do it well.

Gabaldon’s writing has enough description in it that there were times I could see the scene so perfectly, and the sex scenes were…interesting to say the least.


I think a historical-fiction book does its’ job when it makes the reader want to explore more. After listening to the entire book on my walks to and from work every day, I watched a few other shows about Scotland and their history. I also did some light reading online about Scotland and their fights for independence.

As you probably know, I am a lover of history, and Outlander has definitely made me want to dive a little deeper into the historical fiction genre.


I plan on continuing the series in the future, but not any time soon. There’s a few other series I want to finish first, but I won’t forget Outlander because I really enjoy the TV show.