There werelong three years between GoF and OotP. Finishing the former and starting the latter on the same day was a bit odd because when I first had read these books, I had changed and grew a lot. Cedric and the Triwizard Tounrnmanet was such a distant memory. Unlike with the previous three books I just reread, I actually reread most of this rather/more than listen to the audiobook only because I got really into it. I also finished my Monkey socks, and I was devoid of a knitting project for a couple days.
As we all know, this is the book that features angry!Harry. Upon rereading this, he isn’t really that angry, especially at the end. Besides, this book also brings out the teacher and leader in Harry. He’s reckless, but he’s genuinely good and talented. My first thoughts on Harry’s anger in this book was he was irritating, but completely understandable. Looking at Harry’s childhood and adolescence, he’s got a lot to be upset about. I’m sometimes surprised about how unmessed he is considering the neglect with the Dursleys and the several attempts on his life. Speaking of angsty teenagers, this book gave a lot insight to Sirius’s character and exposed some things about the other Marauders, Lily and a bit of Snape really. I loved the Snape’s Worst Memory chapter. It’s like my affinity for PoA in that they show images of the past and how truly James is not exactly as Harry thought he’d be. Up until Lily called Snape “Snivellus”, I really did think there was a whiff of Snape/Lily. Heh. Not that I don’t think about that still because I am dorky dork.
This book represents and features the absolute worse things about being a teenager. HBP shows more of the good things actually in comparison. In this book, Harry feels the anger, alienation and feeling of being outcasted. He yells at the people we love most, becomes even more reckless and rebellious, and is generally just emo at times. It also showcases the first bad relationship one can have in life, notably the awkwardness in being a relationship at that age. Of course, Harry has even worse than most teenagers because he’s an evil psychotic back from the half-dead evil wizard is after him and possibly reading his mind.
Dolores Umbridge is a piece of work. It’s one of the reasons I don’t like reading the books. She’s so foul. You can be a meglomaniac and intolerant without having to join Voldemort. I honestly forgot she threatened Crucio on the kids. That’s Bellatrix’s favourite too.
Another favourite part of this was the Dumbledore’s Army plot, I just loved that even though Harry was an outcast, he also become a teacher and a leader. That he actually helps his fellow students with their studies and practical defense. Umbridge and the DA subplot showcasted how dystopian Hogwarts had become. It became almost like a military dictatorship, and the DA becomes a pseudo rebellious movement.
The last quarter of the book goes by very quickly as there is finally a real massive battle shown in the books. I did not like how often Harry had to face Voldemort alone in the end of the previous books. I found the whole Department of Mysteries ending suspenseful and engaging.
As for the prophecy, I really didn’t know what to think of it at the time, but I’ve really liked where JKR has taken it since this book. The books do have a central theme of choice, especially the right ones and not necessarily the easy ones. Voldemort made the choice to follow the prophecy and chose Harry. Just as Harry has made his choice about Voldemort and countless other things. Ultimately, Harry is looking for identity and peace, and his judgements may not always be right, but he does out of his innate goodness. He’s always had his parents love after all.
The movie comes tomorrow, but I probably won’t see it until the DVD.
Athena, after reading TAS I think you know by now how I feel about Snape/Lily. 😉 The way I interpreted the memory (and DH will probably prove me wrong, but I digress) was that Snape called Lily a Mudblood in order to save face. He was already being humiliated in front of everyone, he didn’t want to be “saved” by a girl (a girl he probably already had a crush on; I think JKR said that Lily was quite popular).
So I guess you’re not the only “dorky dork” ‘cuz I still believe! 🙂