July 24, 2007

· Books

Quite dull for the most part, I thought. Should have been c. 300 pages long. Backstory inserted by way of newspaper articles and book excerpts or what have you is tedious. But you knew all that from Books 4, 5 and 6. Did I mention there are spoilers below the fold?

  • Potentially good ideas re: Wizard Fascism were not handled that well.
  • Potentially good ideas re: Quests that do not turn out as planned were not handled so well, either.
  • Harry still displays occasional lead-paint issues. E.g., saying “Voldemort” at the wrong time.
  • Too many violations of the Evil Overlord Rules. Shooting is not too good for my enemies. I do not have to kill my antagonist myself. Too much talking when planning to kill someone is a bad idea.
  • Direct discussion of death, its nature and effects, is one of the strong points of the whole series.
  • What happened between p200 and p500? I have no idea.
  • Too few important characters were killed. Personally, I’d have killed Ron off, or Ginny, or just all of the Weasleys.
  • Mrs Weasley cannot plausibly be turned into Ripley from Aliens just because everyone hates Bellatrix.
  • Stupid epilogue deserves Hogwarts: TNG series.

This has been your Harry Potter crankiess. You may now say “IT’S JUST A KIDS BOOK, FOR GOD’S SAKE” if you like. Yes I know neither J.K. Rowling (more power to her) nor your 11 year old nor your odd 45 year old cousin with the Gryffindor scarf care about these issues.

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I am Associate Professor of Sociology at Duke University. I’m affiliated with the Kenan Institute for Ethics, the Markets and Management Studies program, and the Duke Network Analysis Center.



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