No. of Recommendations: 2
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It seemed to me that JK played on the whole "Somebody is going to die" thing, with both Hagrid and Weasley getting hurt in the book.

Not to mention MacGonagle getting hit with four Stunners straight to the chest. I also thought Percy Weasley might be the one to buy it.

I was both satisfied and disappointed with the book, and the biggest disappointment was that, for what it was, it should have come out a year ago. Three years between installments may mean interest will die before Rowling is finished writing the series. Human attention span is only so long. I realize she was juggling too many balls at once, but I think that she should finish up the entire series within four years, especially when you consider the ambiguous Neville/Harry prophesy.

That said, man, is Harry a snotty teenager! Angst drips off every page, although you have to wonder how much is adolescent hormones and how much is Voldemort. I'm really glad Rowling didn't make him perfect, but Hermione and Ron always arguing is starting to get old (it probably didn't help that I reread One through Four in the weeks before getting this one).

I wasn't that surprised about Sirius dying. As some else pointed out, no one really expected him to find a nice Animagus girlfriend and settle down to raise a litter of little Blacks. I did think that Harry finding Snape's memory of being bullied by James Potter and his homies revealing, and Harry's reaction to Snape after that, despite knowing the truth, is realistic: Snape's memories destroyed Harry's ideal dad and showed his feet of clay.

The Ministry taking over Hogwarts and putting Umbridge in charge as High Inquisitioner could have been a lot of things -- recent events, history, social satire, TMF Bogey... Whatever it was, it was creepy. It reminded me of the old adage about boiling a frog to death by gradually turning up the temperature; he's boiled before he realizes he's even in hot water.

Speaking of Shawshank Redemption moments, what happened when the centaurs carried Umbridge into the woods?

I agree that Snape is going to play a more important role in the next book, and I think Lupin is, too.

I'm going to have to read this one again. Eight hundred plus pages is a lot to digest in two nights of reading, so I know I missed a lot.

Uhura :o)
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