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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (spoiled)

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Discuss the new book here. Discuss the sad state of literature and how much the series sucks compared to X,Y,Z somewhere else you snobbish prats.
And if you haven't finished the book, stop reading because I'm going to spoil it almost immediately.

I started reading these my freshman or sophomore year of college. I was assured they were quick, entertaining reads and it's true. I read the new one in 8 hours.
If you haven't tried, I highly recommend it. Everyone eats candy. Turn off your TV and read Harry Potter instead.

So, the 6th book...

Obviously the big deal is that Snape kills Dumbledore. You get the feeling it's coming from Chapter 2, which is entertaining but pretty weak where Snape essentially runs off an FAQ. But it's good stuff.

The books are highly formulaic: Harry doesn't like the Dursleys, he gets rescued before starting term at Hogwarts, Voldemort does something naughty, Harry fights him/his minions, Dumbledore saves the day and/or wraps it up at the end with a nice story.

Now, Dumbledore is dead so that formula is (hopefully) broken.

Harry is on his own, there is no deus ex machina figure to come swooping in at the last moment (although undoubtedly there will be on in the final book, probably Snape).

So, yeah, back to the whole Snape kills Dumbledore thing. Snape is a massive prick and a very poor human being. He's a bastard. Tonks, mourning Black's death, has a dog patronus. Snape notices this and says her old one was better and that the new one looks "weak". Fucking prick. She's nice as hell and never did a thing to him but he digs at her anyway because he's just a giant piece of shit. Maybe that's what he does with chicks he likes, like when he calls Harry's mom "mudblood" even though he wanted to bung her. Either way he's a dickface.
And he is, without a doubt, the best damned character in the series.

Has he gone back to his old ways? Obviously, yes. Double agent or not, you don't just up and kill Albus Dumbledore like you're eating a piece of cake and be considered a nice person. He hates every single person in the order of the phoenix. It's not an act, he hates them and wants them all dead.

But here's the question, is there anyone on earth that he likes? Even himself? I don't think so, I think it's a matter of who he hates most and my bet is that in the end he hates Voldemort most of all for killing Harry's fine-ass mom before he could get a piece of that action.

Obviously all this was planned. Dumbledore wasn't begging for his life when he said "Snape, please" he was begging Snape to do the thing he didn't want to do (thanks Jar-Ja...err... Hagrid!), which is kill him. Dumbledore is probably the only person who has ever treated Snape as if he was a decent human being. It's got to be tough to kill the only person who thinks you're worth a shit, hence the melodramatic "I AM NOT A COWARD!" blahblah.

And the last part of my post, the simpering relationship crap.
First off, people are very angry about Harry and Hermione not getting together. The INTERNETS are buzzing with it. I was pointed to a lovely diatribe about how Rowling BETRAYED US ALL with this and how people are never going to read any of her books again blah blah blah.

If you didn't know Ron & Hermione were getting together since, I don't know, the 2nd or 3rd book you are an absolute imbecile and should go hide in a cave.
Harry & Ginny. Whatever. It's the whole Spiderman "I can't love you because then Doc Oc will get you hurrrr!" thing. Bleh.

Me? I'm hoping for the hot Harry & Snape action!

Oh, and Ron almost called his sister a slut, that was pretty awesome.



Oh animu, what rape porn won't you make?
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post #2 of 23
This is the 6th book I have NOT read. I have never had any interesting in opening a cover of any of the Harry Potter books.

I'm not much of a book reader -- read: I don't read books -- but even if I did read a lot I probably wouldn't be interested in these. Like my similar disinterest in the Lord of the Rings series, I just can't get into all the old wizardy lore stuff.

I saw the first LOTR and shrugged it off. I think I'd do the same if I started reading Harry Potter. But hey, kudos to all of you who are into that.
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post #3 of 23
Read it, enjoyed it. The first thing I noticed was how easy this is going to be made into a movie. It was as if the screen writers were there with her. Dumbledore had to die for Harry to evolve. Snape killed him to save Malfoy's soul. So Malfoy will do something unexpectantly good in the next book or which ever one will be the end of the series. I also think that Hogwarts had to be closed so the series would not be limited to 7 books. It is too big of a cash cow. Other fantasy authors have kept series going for a long time ( Anne McCaffrey - Pern series, Stephen Donaldson - Thomas Covenant, Alan Dean Foster - Flinx series) so I can see this going on for a long time. They have been a nice easy reads so I will continue to read as many as she puts out.

reg
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by CosmoNut
This is the 6th book I have NOT read. I have never had any interesting in opening a cover of any of the Harry Potter books.

I'm not much of a book reader -- read: I don't read books -- but even if I did read a lot I probably wouldn't be interested in these.

Awesome, thanks for contributing.
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post #5 of 23
I think that her characters were interesting - particularly Professor Slug with his social mechinations.

The teen romance bit was kind of a long slog before we got to some people killing each other.

I think that the War on Voldemort (with a bunch of innocent people imprisoned for pollitical reasons) was a dig on the War on Terror. I thought that Mr. Weasley was pretty stupid not to follow up on the tip about the store - he could have found out about the teleportation cabinet and stopped the plan in progress if he wasn't so incompetent. In a way, he caused his own son's disfigurment.

I ended up reading it in a single day, so it was unusually captivating. I used to read thousands of science fiction and fantasy books, but now not so much. Even the latest Steven Brust novel is still sitting on the shelf, but I read the Harry Potter book right away (well, after my kids were through with it).

And I am probably house Slythern material. 8)
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post #6 of 23
I basically didn't really care about the 6th book all that much. Partially because the ending was spoiled for me(though I did have my suspicions prior, the effect is still hurt when you KNOW the end, which speaks to how these books are weak sauce. To me, a truly great story, you can know the end, and it doesn't matter... but that's another tangent.)

I've read them all and my interest has waned with each book I think. It was actually an accident that I got sucked into the series. My sister was reading aloud the 1st book to my little brother while I was in the room. But they stopped reading on a cliff hanger type part. So I picked up the book, read it, and next thing I knew I was eagerly awaiting the release of the next book. But this one, I didn't really care, I dunno, I mean it was never great literature to begin with...

I thought all that teenage 'love' stuff was fun though. I also liked how the book didn't really focus on their classes/school much at all. It seemed to be more of a primer for the next book which will hopefully be the best.

Although, the cynic in me says that rowling has now opened up the possibility of continuing the series past the 7th book. With Harry no longer attending the school, the series is no longer bound by his 7 years there. Ya know? But... I guess the voldemort conflict is too big to just overcome and then go back to mediocre stories about how hard transfiguration is \

I personally like the movies, particularly the 3rd one, I think that's rad. I hope they maintain that level of quality.

Rowling has definitely been overhauling the humor aspects of the books, lots of witticisms and clever retorts from just about every character. I appreciated that a lot, even if some of the humor was kind of dry.
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post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by groverat
Harry & Ginny. Whatever. It's the whole Spiderman "I can't love you because then Doc Oc will get you hurrrr!" thing. Bleh.

Speaking as a spider-man fan, it's not just doc ock, it's just the fact that he's a super-hero, meaning, he fights super-villains and anyone that is close to him will undoubtedly get caught up in the wake of such fights. Heck, Mary-jane ISN'T seeing peter/spider-man for a big part of the series, and she STILL manages to get nearly killed all the time.

Is it something of a cop out... sorta, depends on how you look at it. In the harry potter series is it something of a cop out.. less so, because there are no secret identities and ginny would definitely be very unsafe if she remained close to harry.

oops... I just got nerd on the thread. my bad.
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post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Sirius and Harry weren't sexing each other (or were they ) and Voldemort still used Sirius against him in the 5th book. So it's not like Baddy McBadguy won't find out Harry wants to know (hey-o!) Ron's sister anyway. He might as well get his in the bargain.

All that Peter Parker stuff is crap. I got a very heavy "I'm a loner, Dottie, a rebel!" vibe from the last 20-30 pages of the book; as he dismisses his chick and goes all Marlon-Brando-in-"The Wild One" on Scrimgeour.

"I'm not going to be your stooge, man!"

I could see Harry flicking away a half-smoked cigarette and pulling up the collar on his leather jacket. Meh.

The book was ruined for me, too.
FYADumbledore dies because Snape kills him
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post #9 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by groverat

Harry & Ginny. Whatever. It's the whole Spiderman "I can't love you because then Doc Oc will get you hurrrr!" thing. Bleh.

Me? I'm hoping for the hot Harry & Snape action!

Oh, and Ron almost called his sister a slut, that was pretty awesome.

1. Haha, my feeling exactly. Let the girl die and get over it.


2. That's just great. I'm sure you'd write fabulous fanfic.

3. Yes, and the word "slut" was used in the book in another scene. Yay for PG-13+ on the movie!
post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Placebo
2. That's just great. I'm sure you'd write fabulous fanfic.

No need to wait for me. Just Google "Potter Snape slash" and enjoy.
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post #11 of 23
What in gods name aare those people at Detention doing? Potter and Snape in homo-erotic situations.....

Jesus H Christ... is nothing sacred!

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~ Ludwig Wittgenstein
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~ Ludwig Wittgenstein
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post #12 of 23
I'm interested to see if the next book picks right up where this one left off. JKR said somewhere that this was the last quidditchchithch match, which is good.

I got the feeling that this was very much a placeholder book, setting up the finale, and as a result of this absence of any quest-proper like in the previous novels this one just didn't come off as well as the others.

Actually, I was kind of hoping that Harry would die in this one and the last book would be Ron and Hermione and the Really Hard Homework Problem. Maybe a spinoff could be "Ronald Weasley and the Cauldron of Clearisil"?
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post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Book 7 is set up to be a Legend of Zelda-style fetch quest.

Harry goes into dungeon, fights boss, gets horcrux.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

After all horcruxes are (thought) destroyed, go after the final one (in Voldemort's living body). Harry tries to kill Voldemort, it doesn't work (because Harry is too pure to kill) so Snape does it OR Voldemort possesses Harry and is killed forever by the love within (gay)!
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post #14 of 23
Actually, I've been wondering if Harry himself might not be sort of an accidental horcrux. He's got a bit of Voldemort's power, after all, which I don't think Voldemort intended. Maybe he's got a chunk of Voldemort's soul too.
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Declaring us the nicest of the damned -- They Might Be Giants          See the stars at skyviewcafe.com
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post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by shetline
Actually, I've been wondering if Harry himself might not be sort of an accidental horcrux. He's got a bit of Voldemort's power, after all, which I don't think Voldemort intended. Maybe he's got a chunk of Voldemort's soul too.

Ooh. Hadn't considered that. There'll certainly be a scene with Voldy and Harry and the "Dumbledore never told you about your father..."
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post #16 of 23
I was wondering.

I have not read any of these books, but I'm skeptical of anything this popular -- especially when I see 10-year-olds with their round spectacles up at midnight waiting to buy the lastest installment.

But like I said I haven't read them, so I can't comment.

But.

What is the deal with this series? Are we talking of writing on a par with London, Twain or maybe Lewis or Tolkien? Or is it more technical/psychologically obtuse like a Christie, Clancy-Crichton/Ludlum? Or none of those?

What is the allure here?

In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

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In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

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post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by dmz
I was wondering.

I have not read any of this books, but am naturally skeptical of anything this popular -- especially when I see 10-year-olds with their round spectacles up at midnight.

But like I said I haven't read them, so I can't comment.

But.

What is the deal with this series? Are we talking of writing on a par with London, Twain or maybe Lewis or Tolkien? Or is it more technical/psychologically obtuse like a Christie, Clancy-Crichton/Ludlum? Or none of those?

What is the allure here?

They're simply well-written and engaging children's novels that track a small group of children over the course of their adolescence. The attention to character development and detail is really quite impressivestarting a couple of novels/years ago, they all started getting moody and sullen and generally teenager-ish, all without really knowing why. The last two novels have really developed the high-schoolish relationship stuff.

The standard Jungian fantasy archetypes and quest motifs are there, and so like Star Wars, they really resonate well across culturesespecially in the west.

The other part of it is that JKR seems to have done a marvelous job of painting this otherworld that runs parallel to our own.

The other other thing is that they aren't dumbed down and they aren't short, and it warms the cockles of many hearts to see 12 year old kids plowing through a big novel like that.

The shame is that they made movies out of them, since it goes something like this:

Person 1: JKR HAS GOTTEN KIDS INTERESTED IN READING AGAIN! THEY'RE USING THEIR IMAGINATIONS!

Person 2: THAT'S GREAT!

Person 3: LET'S MAKE A MOVIE OUT OF THEM!
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post #18 of 23
Thread Starter 
dmz:

They are very imaginative and very fun.

The humor and intellect are decent and accessible. I am rarely insulted by one of the books. (I am often insulted by books, especially mainstream ones.)

I like the Potter series more than Narnia. I guess I'm not supposed to say that or something, but I think one of the great appeals to Narnia is the Christ imagery and really that doesn't do anything for me.
Potter is more fun, in my opinion.

Give them a shot. There's very little point in trying to gain insight on them from hearing readers make comparison.
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post #19 of 23
Would my ten-year-old (on her 5th book in the Narnia series) be able to 'get it'?

In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

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In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

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post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by dmz
Would my ten-year-old (on her 5th book in the Narnia series) be able to 'get it'?

Most likely.
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post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by dmz
Would my ten-year-old (on her 5th book in the Narnia series) be able to 'get it'?

Yes - but depending on how fragile she is, the movies might be too scary. I told my 10 year old that she had to wait until she is the same age as Harry before seeing the movies (11 for book 1, 12 for book 2, etc), but she likes the books and tapes.
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post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally posted by e1618978
Yes - but depending on how fragile she is, the movies might be too scary. I told my 10 year old that she had to wait until she is the same age as Harry before seeing the movies (11 for book 1, 12 for book 2, etc), but she likes the books and tapes.

I know what you mean. I was worried when She saw the second one on TV at her Grandparents -- "oh just let those grandbabies watch whatever they want you mean, old parent"; but she's the same one that will sit through North By Northwest, Nortorious and Casablanca -- so, she she was kind of ho-hum about the story. (which I'm certain was unrecognizable form the book, if I know Hollywood)

In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

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In our desire to impose form on the world we have lost the capacity to see the form that is there;
and in that lies not liberation but alienation, the cutting off from things as they really are. --...

Reply
post #23 of 23
Thread Starter 
Will your 10-year-old get it? Sure, enough to follow the story and have fun, anyway. You won't know how much of the character/story depth they get if you don't read it as well and ask them questions about it, so it is tough to guage.

To me, Narnia is more "for children" than Potter is. Perhaps I'm just saying that because Narnia is a straight-forward fantasy story while Potter is more of an alternate-reality story.

I only know one person who actually disliked Potter, my wife's 66-year-old uncle who hates anything that isn't 100% realistic in literature/movies.

I was actually very skeptical myself; intellectual snobbery actually led me to dig up my old Narnia books where I was convinced I would find depths of imagination and insight Rowling couldn't dream of. I was wrong.

Don't let the 30-year-olds dressing up and slash/fanfic writers turn you off. There are good reasons Potter is wildy successful.
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