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:

If you like my reviews, make sure to follow me on social media.

Twitter  | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook 


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!
Twitter  | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook 

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Hello dear readers, I welcome you back to the magical world of Harry Potter.

I have reviewed the previous four books in the series so far, but if you were interested in my review of the Goblet of Fire, you can find it here.

There is a lot of controversy over whether or not I should be even talking about the Harry Potter series. J.K Rowling is a walking, talking ball of controversy.

Despite that, we cannot deny that Harry Potter was a major literary milestone for a lot of readers in my generation, so I do think it deserves the attention at the very least.

If you like my review, make sure to follow me on social media!
Twitter  | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook 


Advertisements

Title: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Author: J.K Rowling
Rating: ★★★★☆

There is a door at the end of a silent corridor. And it’s haunting Harry Pottter’s dreams. Why else would he be waking in the middle of the night, screaming in terror?

Harry has a lot on his mind for this, his fifth year at Hogwarts: a Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher with a personality like poisoned honey; a big surprise on the Gryffindor Quidditch team; and the looming terror of the Ordinary Wizarding Level exams. But all these things pale next to the growing threat of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named – a threat that neither the magical government nor the authorities at Hogwarts can stop.

As the grasp of darkness tightens, Harry must discover the true depth and strength of his friends, the importance of boundless loyalty, and the shocking price of unbearable sacrifice.

His fate depends on them all.



Friendship is Important

We all know Harry is basically nothing without his friends. He isn’t the best wizard we have ever seen, but he does have some good friends that are smart, loyal, and dependable.

We get to see some of that loyal friendship in Order of the Phoenix. Harry is trying to gather together an army to fight against Voldemort, and after some convincing, manages to band together a good number of Hogwarts’ students to train them for an inevitable battle against the Dark Lord.

Most of his army is made up of Gryffindor students, but we get some from various houses too.

It’s nice diving a little deeper into the other characters in the Potterverse. We don’t get to go that much deeper, but we venture out from the trio and explore other people.


MAGIC!!!

We finally get to see some magic in this book, and it is my favourite aspect of the book.

Most of the other books, casting spells seems secondary to the rest of the story. Harry even struggles with trying to cast some basic spells in a few books, so seeing more spells in this book is nice.

I wouldn’t say I am thrilled with it, but I am glad casting spells was more of the focus than before.

Most of the spells we see Harry and the DA practicing are spells we learned in the past, which sort of defeats the purpose, but I honestly don’t mind too much because these are spells that we’ve seen before, but we get to see them in a whole new light.


The End is Nigh

Order of the Phoenix is the start of the end of the Harry Potter Series.

The first two books set up the Harry Potter world. The third book gives us a bit of backstory and deepens the world for us. The fourth book is a bit of an odd one. A lot of it is pointless, right until the end when the big bad guy is revived and re-introduced to the world.

Order of the Phoenix makes the threat a lot more real. Voldemort is back and the world knows it.

We don’t get to know the entirety of his plans and we don’t get to see him for too long, but we get to see him at his full strength and the threat it brings.

2

Final Thoughts

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is one of the better books in the Harry Potter series.

Like the rest of the series, it deepens our exploration of the Potteverse, but this time we get to see more magic.

Magic is weirdly something I don’t remember seeing often in the Harry Potter world, at least not directly.

It often goes on in the background and we don’t always get an understanding of it.


What did you think of the fifth installment of the Harry Potter Series?

Let’s talk about it in the comments or on social media!
Twitter  | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook 

Book Tour and Review: Knightmare Arcanist by Shami Stovall

My dear readers, this is probably the most excited I’ve been about a book in a long time.

I feel like a lot of books I read leave me feeling okay. I’m usually not too upset by them but I’m usually not jumping off the walls in excitement.

Knightmare Arcanist is the exception to that.

It took me no time at all to get through it, and I almost immediately bought the rest of the series, but managed to control myself…for now!.

If you enjoy this review, make sure to follow me for more!
Twitter  | Instagram | Goodreads | Facebook 


Title: Knightmare Archanist
Author: Shami Stovall
Rating: ★★★★.5☆
Buy it here

Magic. Sailing. A murderer among heroes.

Gravedigger Volke Savan wants nothing more than to be like his hero, the legendary magical swashbuckler, Gregory Ruma. First he needs to become an arcanist, someone capable of wielding magic, which requires bonding with a mythical creature. And he’ll take anything—a pegasus, a griffin, a ravenous hydra—maybe even a leviathan, like Ruma. 

So when Volke stumbles across a knightmare, a creature made of shadow and terror, he has no reservations. But the knightmare knows a terrible secret: Ruma is a murderer out to spread corrupted magic throughout their island nation. He’s already killed a population of phoenixes and he intends to kill even more. 

In order to protect his home, his adopted sister, and the girl he admires from afar, Volke will need to confront his hero, the Master Arcanist Gregory Ruma. 


Advertisements

A Nice Take on Magic

Magic systems are an important part to telling a story. There are ways to explore a magic system while exploring the world at the same time, but too often an author does it wrong.

They rush in their storytelling and they get caught in one aspect or the other, forgetting to properly develop them at the same time.

Stovall finds a great balance for Knightmare Arcanist. We follow a young character just as they are exploring magic for the first times. As the story develops, so too does our character’s understanding of how magic works.

Stovall’s magic system is a nice change to the normal magic systems I read about. Usually the magic system is along the lines of controlling an element or using their willpower to do something amazing.

We see that in Knightmare Arcanist, but we get a new way of exploring that world.

Instead of just being automatically able to control your genre of magic, it is completely reliant on the type of magical creature you bond with.

It puts a limiter on each character, but allows them to explore themselves on a deeper level.

It adds some well-written character development as the story goes on, which was a lot more than I was expecting for a fast-paced YA novel.


Fun and Fast

I often find myself disappointed with YA novels. They’re too carefree and things happen too quickly.

Characters are too quick to trust, too quick to act, too quick to do. There is never any pause to the story. There’s never any time for the characters to have a moment of doubt.

This is why I can’t give this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Though I loved so many aspects of it, it was too fast paced in a few aspects. Some characters were too quick to trust someone, and immediately my mind wandered to imagining what would happen to them if they trusted blindly.

This wasn’t the case for every character, but some key moments were built on an absolute trust that could very easily have caused them to be betrayed.


A Movie Series in the Making?

This might be me being too much of a fan of this book, but I could honestly see this series as a book series or TV show.

I think Stovall does a great job of not only keeping the story focused on one central plot, but also keeping the world open and vague enough that we know we are only scratching the surface.

I haven’t read the rest of the series yet, but trust me I will soon. Thinking back on all the other YA series I have read, this one has been the most enjoyable. It has great character development, which is too often a rare feature in YA, a great magic system, and a cast of characters that remind me of being a kid again.


Final Thoughts

Knightmare Arcanist is an absolute blast to read. It’s short, fast-paced, and is a fantastic pre-cursor to a world I can’t wait to explore more.

I’m not a big YA reader, but I enjoy it now and then. Sometimes it is just a nice break from reading heavy fantasy books all the time.

Knightmare Arcanist is just scratching the surface of Stovall’s world, and I think that the more you continue with this series, the more engrossed in the world you will become.

It is definitely worth the read, and honestly I would be disappointed if you didn’t want to read it.


Quotes from The Girl Who Found the Sun

“There is a perfectly logical explanation for everything. However, it’s impossible to have a rational conversation with a child who’s screaming in terror.”
Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“It started with the insects. Whole species died off one after the next. No one cared. Maybe if they had, we’d remember what the sun looked like.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“People aren’t supposed to live in burrows. We’re not damned rabbits.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

Advertisements

“Not everything that looks like a dumb idea turns out bad, and sometimes, it’s the smart ideas that get us in the most trouble.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“There are three kinds of people. Reckless fools who don’t care how dangerous something is, those who understand the risk and stare death in the eye, and those who spend their whole life hiding under their beds.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“Big problems always start off as small ones people think can wait until later.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“All wounds heal given enough time. Even the ones you want to hold on to.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“Half of succeeding is acting like you know what you’re doing.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“When a person takes risks to serve a greater need, it’s heroic. Now, when they take risks for no good reason? That’s called having fun.”
Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“Expect anything; regret nothing”
Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

Advertisements

“People do stuff for all kinds of reasons, not all of ’em make sense. Don’t waste time being upset over why you did something. Figure out how you’re gonna deal with the consequences.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“Biting doesn’t work too well for humans, so we invented stabbing, which soon became stabbing people far away with arrows. Then some genius came up with gunpowder, so we could stab people really far away. Somewhere after that came bombs and pumpkin spice. I’m not sure which one caused more casualties.”
-Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

“Used to be, I thought nuclear weapons were the most irresistible force made by humanity. Then I had a daughter. Uncontained fission has nothing on a three-year-old demanding something she’s set her mind on.”
Matthew S. Cox. The Girl Who Found the Sun

TOP TEN TUESDAY: BOOKS I’VE READ THAT I’D LIKE IN MY PERSONAL LIBRARY

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This one took me a long time to figure out, but I think I came up with a pretty good list in my opinion.

The Fellowship of the Ring

I read it on an e-Reader but haven’t purchased a physical copy yet.

Redwall Series

My favourite books growing up. I have kept the main stories, but I’d like to own them all again one day.

One Piece

Seems like a loft goal owning every chapter of One Piece. I’d probably need a room dedicated to it, but I wouldn’t mind that.

Naruto

I think this is a series I could re-read again in a reasonable amount of time, and I’d like to own it in order to do that.

Fullmetal Alchemist

I’ve started the collection, but I hope to own them all one day soon. There’s not too many so it’s not that achievable.

Where the Red Fern Grows

A great book from my childhood that I would love to read again from an adult perspective.

Legend Series

One of my favourite YA series that I’ve read. I always got the books from my school library, so owning them would be nice, especially since there is a new one coming out soon.

Various Shakespeare Works

Something about owning a bunch of Shakespeare stories makes me feel distinguished? Educated? Either way I’d like to own some more.

Sherlock Holmes

I’ve read a few Sherlock Holmes pieces in various books, but I’d like one giant collection of them all.

UnNamed Book from Childhood

I don’t remember the name of it, or who wrote it, but I remember it was about a boy who was kidnapped and dragged to an island in order to figure out a water pumping system his dad built to get at some buried treasure. If that makes any sense to you and you know the name, please let me know!