Thursday, March 26, 2015

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J. K. Rowling

That's not a mistake in the title for this book. I own a British-published copy of the book (thanks, Sis!) where a bunch of the vocabulary is different. My children are finally old enough to have it read to them, so we are starting the series. They have seen the movie and were curious about differences, though there are hardly any with the first two books and movies. They enjoyed it immensely.

This was my first re-reading in over ten years. For me, as an adult whose already read it twice before, the story is still exciting. I forgot how Rowling's early writing style leaned more to fairy tale. The oppressed boy who has a fabulous destiny awaiting him is fairly common but has a freshness here thanks to the modern day setting. The story moves quickly and has an amazing amount of detail in it about the wizarding world which makes a nice contrast to our everyday world. Some of the detail is light satire (Quidditch's crazy rules are a parody of cricket, though my favorite bit of satire is the history professor who died in his sleep but keeps teaching classes as a ghost). Most of it is just plain great storytelling. The book doesn't get old and I'm looking forward to reading the next one with J and L soon.

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