So, really, who HASN'T read the Harry Potter series? I haven't read the entire series since about fifth grade (and I'm pretty sure only 4 were out then anyway), so I decided it was time to reread the series! This'll be my third time through. I know, a lot of fans have read them tens of times, but oh well! There may be spoilers in this review, so if you haven't read the series, READ NO FURTHER!!!!
Title: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Author: J.K. Rowling
Rating: ***** (what else can you give Harry Potter??)
Summary: we all know the story right?
Review: So as stated above, I haven't read the first four books in a very long time (I reread 5 and 6 before 7 came out). I've watched the movies quite often (who else LOVES Harry Potter weekend on ABC Family???), but I'd forgotten many of the details and differences in the books.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone is an excellent book. It's so interesting to read these earlier books after having read the entire series, because as I'm noticing in the first two, they are definitely geared towards a younger audience. The writing is much simpler, and the plot isn't nearly as dark.
That's another thing I noticed in this first book--the writing. It wasn't nearly as stellar as it is in the later books. Of course, this was J.K. Rowling's first novel, but it's cool to see where she started (which, of course, is still pretty good, but not MIND blowing) and where she ended the series as a writer--there's a lot of progression! Don't get me wrong, her writing is still great, but it gets even greater as the series goes on.
Another thing that's interesting about going back and rereading these earlier books is the incredible amount of detail and foreshadowing J.K. Rowling includes. Snape protects Harry at the Quidditch game, the centaurs discuss how bright Mars is (Mars was the god of war, and a war is coming to the wizarding world), etc. As for detail, she really shows us the characters and the setting, so next time I watch the movie I'll have to make the comments I always do for other book-based movies: "That's wrong--this is how it is!" and "He's supposed to look like this." Yeah. I'm kinda annoying to watch a movie with. For example, the Dursleys seem a lot meaner to Harry in the book than they were in the first movie. Like they dye his clothes black and only give him Dudley's hand me downs, which drown him. He does all the cooking and cleaning. (And, since I might forget this by the time I review book 2, Aunt Petunia threw a FRYING PAN at Harry's head.)
Sorry for the somewhat rambling review, but I'm not really concerned with discussing characters and plot since most of you have probably read these books and analyzed them to pieces, as most of us have while waiting for the next book to be released.
Recommended for: EVERYONE--young and old, boys and girls, avid bookworms and non-readers alike
Also, I highly recommend two Harry Potter discussions:
~Mark Reads Harry Potter. This is a twenty-something guy reading the series for the first time, and he hasn't seen any of the movies. He reviews chapter by chapter, and these reviews are hilarious! I've been following along from the beginning of the series as I read, but you can read from anywhere! He's on the 6th book now. There is a bit of profanity, so I recommend this to high school age+
~Mugglecast. This is a podcast (kinda like a taped radio broadcast. Basically people discussing Harry Potter.) done by the people who run Mugglenet, the #1 Harry Potter fansite in the world! They are currently doing a chapter-by-chapter discussion of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, but you can find older episodes on their website too. They don't just do a chapter-by-chapter; they discuss listener emails, Harry Potter news, and more great stuff! I've laughed so hard I cried listening to these guys, and I highly recommend them to ANY Harry Potter fan.
Enjoy! Only 64 days until the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1!!