Thursday, October 16, 2014

Review: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets - J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling
Series: Harry Potter #2
Genre: Middle Grade, fantasy
Published on June 2, 1999
Published by Arthur A. Levine Books
Pages: 342
Read From: 9.20.14 - 9.21.14

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he's packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike. 
And strike it does. For in Harry's second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls' bathroom, and the unwanted attentions of Ron Weasley's younger sister, Ginny. 
But each of these seem minor annoyances when the real trouble begins, and someone - or something - starts turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possibly be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects. . . .Harry Potter himself.


Cover Blurb: Yes or No? I am a fan of the original (i.e. these covers) art work, so yes, I do like the cover art. It's not my favorite cover out of them all, but I still like it.

Characters: Harry Potter's snark really starts to show in this second volume, and he started to actually become a character that I more than just "sort of" liked. Out of all of the characters, he's still not my favorite - just because there are so many other more interesting characters. But Harry is a pretty awesome protagonist. Hermione continues to be totally awesome; she's got spunk, intelligence, doesn't get into trouble, and all without having an Attitude. Fred and George Weasley are awesome (all you Potter fans would probably be mad if I said otherwise), and I have to say that I still like Draco Malfoy. He's an absolute brat - there's no denying that. But he's the sort of bratty character that I like. They're too awesomely awful to outright hate. Gilderoy Lockhart, the new Hogwarts professor for Defense Against the Dark Arts, was so amazingly annoying, I was laughing most of the time. And then there's Dobby, the abused house elf. He just disturbed me, with his self-inflicted punishments and whatnot. What a sorry little creature; it would just be better to put it out of its misery. What about Voldemort, you may ask? Is he any more intimidating? Um, no. Voldemort is way too fond of his own voice. He spends so much time gloating and explaining his clever plans. Seriously, Voldemort - just kill Harry Potter already!

The Romance: None.

Plot: I give you the above synopsis. While I haven't read all of the other Harry Potter books yet (I'm working on it!), I can see why this is heralded as everyone's favorite. The Chamber of Secrets is awesome, there's a lot of funny moments intermixed with the darker, more serious aspects, the stakes have been raised, and we get to learn about Hagrid's past, and are introduced to a host of new and interesting characters that help build and enrich the world of Hogwarts. This one reads most like a mystery, and I'm always a fan of mysteries. The plot probably could have moved a bit faster, but I seriously can't complain about extra world building - especially when the Author has created such an interesting world with lots of rules and things that need to be explained. I do have one question, though: how many times can Harry Potter seriously get into trouble without ever being expelled?

Believability: Not applicable.

Writing Style: Third person, past tense. As usual, it's filled with the customary British children's fiction humor that I am such a great fan of. That alone makes me like this book.

Content: None.

Conclusion: I'll confess, the ending in the movie was a lot more exciting, but I was also relieved to discover that it wasn't drawn out in the book. It was still exciting, and it does have me excited to read the next book. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was a lot of fun, like the last book, and I can see why so many people love this series. It's funny, it's well thought out, it's got interesting characters, and exciting plots.

Recommended Audience: Girl-and-guy read, eight-and-up, fans of fantasy and British writers!

Others in the Harry Potter Series:
1)Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
2)Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
3)Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
4)Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
5)Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6)Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
7)Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows


  1. I'm glad you're enjoying it! I'm also interested to see whether your enjoyment level drops off where mine did later in the series. I hope you have fun with the next one!

    1. Was it the dreaded HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX where your interest dropped off? My trusted friends have assured me that I can make it through and that I'll like the rest, so I'm hopeful.


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