Monday, July 30, 2007

Spoiler alert!

I finished that Harry Potter book. And I will give you a brief review. And you will read it. YOU HAVE NO CHOICE.

Listen, I will admit that I long ago stopped caring about Harry Potter. Around the time of the Goblet of Fire, and through the Order of the Phoenix, and LORD GOD ALMIGHTY did I not give a damn and a half about whatever the last one was. And I think Amberella has the best angle on why: I don't want an Epic Saga. I want an fantasy romp. That's why the first three were fun... Voldemort was there as a bad guy, yes, but waaaay in the background and halfway incidental, and not the Biggest, Baddest, Ass-Kickin'-est Evil Villain Forever. He was just a very angry back of some dude's head.

That being said: JK wrapped things up all right. I actually enjoyed the book, and cared about the characters more than I have for three books. And some even surprised me: Draco and the Malfoys turning away from Voldy because of their love for each other was, yes, cheesy, but a little heartwarming. And while I suspected Snape was a good guy all along, it was nice to find out for sure... even if Dumbledore's terminal curse was a little deux ex mechanic. And on that note, there were a lot fewer "pulled out of the ass" magic moments than I would have feared. It all held together fairly well, honestly, and left the series on a high note. You know, as far as plot is concerned.

... now let's talk about prose. This book needed two things: six more months of editing and the removal of all romantic subplots. All of them. Okay, maybe I'll leave you Ron and Hermione, 'cause that one has been built up for a while and was kind of adorably awkward with only one real passiony moment that was brief and not overly painful, but GOOD GOD DAMN the woman must never talk about kissing in detail ever again! And why the Hell is it okay that Harry makes out with Ginny? She's the sister of his best friend and member of the first family to ever treat him as one of their own! She's practically his sister! EW! EW! EW! And to top all THAT off, Ms. Rowling has the most horrifying romantic prose I have ever read. It made me CRINGE. I almost stopped reading the book at chapter seven! It was awkward and unnerving and just... horrible. Make it die.

Just... make it die.

So, it wasn't uniformly terrible. A lot of it was pretty good. I give it a thumbs up overall. Just... man, she would have done well with a good ghostwriter and a better editor, I think. And the less said about the epilogue, which reads like fanfiction, the better.


Anonymous Nicole said...

Where is the horrifying romantic prose at? You have to be more specific.

7/30/2007 8:54 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Any time Rowling describes a kiss, you will find horrifying romantic prose.

Chapter seven especially is gut-churningly bad.

And while I've not read the rest of the book myself, I was (sadly) spoiled a long time ago, leaving me free to put off reading the book until I can be arsed to pick up/borrow/steal a copy.

7/31/2007 8:02 AM  
Anonymous jenniflower said...

Terrifyingly, I kinda agree with everything you said. Especially the bits about JKR writing romance. SHUDDER.

Except you know what your review lacks? A long eulogy for Snape.

7/31/2007 8:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with your assessment of the book, although I was totally into the whole series (though a year or so behind until this book, as I didn't want this one spoiled like the last one was).
Also, sandwiches of some sort seem to be in order for us dudes. Us dudes right here.

7/31/2007 8:01 PM  
Anonymous AAMF said...

Do I could as dudes or do I need to like move to New Rochelle?

8/02/2007 6:42 AM  

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