This took me far longer than I imagined it would have but I was distracted, primarily due to other priorities and partially due to my own laziness to read. (Oops?)
Warning: Spoilers ahead because I’m too lazy (ha) to try and filter than out, and because I have too many emotions and can’t properly express them without also revealing what caused them.
It has been some time since I last reviewed a Harry Potter book (the last one being the first of the series). Since then, I’ve come a long way. I’ve ventured alongside Harry and his friends and experienced joy, adventure, grief—perhaps not in the magnitude that he did but felt it nonetheless…
So the story of Harry Potter has finally come to a close. Approximately a year of searching desperately for the Horcruxes, the discovery of the Deathly Hallows, of Harry mastering Occlumency through grief, of countless losses and miracles and wizardry knowledge… all of this has come to an end.
I honestly don’t know how to feel. I’m torn between sadness and elation. I’d been wanting for ages to finally learn about all of the inside jokes. I’m probably one of the last of my generation to get around to reading this book. But man, I don’t want it to end. (Thank God for fan fiction though, am I right? *nudge, nudge*)
I was in the middle of class when I read about Dobby’s death, and it brought me to tears. I felt pretty pathetic, sitting there with tears threatening to spill over my cheeks, just like I had while in the lunch line reading the scene where Sirius was killed by Bellatrix or in the car as Dumbledore fell to his death from the Astronomy Tower. But it just pained me so much to read about. He’d done so much for Harry, so willingly. I wish he could’ve lived to see Harry grow older.
Kreacher’s complete turnaround was absolutely lovely. It was a shame Sirius couldn’t have been around for that and that he never really thought of the possibility. (Then again, Sirius isn’t Harry, so can you really blame him?) And when he showed up during the battle, I couldn’t help but feel excited. The same goes for Percy Weasley, the little shit. I still dislike him but I’m grateful that he came to his senses.
The deaths of Fred Weasley, Remus Lupin, Nymphadora Tonks, and Colin Creevey had me sobbing in my bedroom. It was terrible; my vision was to blurred for me to be able to read, so I stopped to wipe my eyes and keep reading. (Thankfully, I didn’t get any tears on the book.) Colin was so, so young… He had so much to live for, so much left to do. Fred is dead while his twin lives. Fred, whose family is no doubt plagued by grief. Remus and Tonks… God, they’d just been married! Just had their kid! Shortly before battle, Lupin had a photograph with him in his pocket! It all just feels so unfair. But I guess that’s life, right?
Even after Snape died and after reading about his memories in the Pensieve, I didn’t feel particularly bad that he died. I mean, despite protecting Harry for all those years and doing the good that he did, Snape was still an awful human being who could not separate James Potter from his son. The moment he set foot into Hogwarts, Snape took his anger and jealousy out on Harry, who’d done no wrong to him. Snape only gave Harry a reason to loathe him until his death. He didn’t deserve Lily, no matter how much he claimed to love her. He had good intentions in the end. He’d done what he could. But I don’t think he can ever fully redeem himself from the bad that he did.
The entire ‘King’s Cross’ chapter was… interesting, to say the least. Harry’s conversation with Dumbledore was particularly intriguing. I like the idea that he had a choice. And I am not really surprised at the decision he did make. It was exactly what you’d expect from The Chosen One, wasn’t it? And I absolutely adored the parts in which Dumbledore ‘fessed up to what he did and acknowledged his mistakes. I don’t really like how he put Harry up on a pedestal though, nor how he continued to beat himself up for his mistakes, no doubt having grieved over them for decades. Harry is most definitely not perfect, though very admirable and noble; he’s hotheaded and sometimes selfish even. It was also a bit annoying how Harry continued to defend Dumbledore to the man himself, despite knowing that he had been dishonest and elusive. Dumbledore was a great wizard but had many faults. Harry needed to take that into account.
What he did with the Deathly Hallows was rather brave (typical Gryffindor), though I’m rather worried someone might accidentally stumble upon the Resurrection Stone, recognize it, and continue to pursue its companions. But it probably won’t be so easily recognizable. As for the Elder Wand, won’t people know it’s buried with Dumbledore? If someone, like Voldemort, so desperately longs for that kind of power before Harry dies by natural causes, wouldn’t it be too simple for them to get it? Shouldn’t more thought go into that? Also, Harry being the last of Ignotus Peverell’s descendents (until he and Ginny get… busy… ten years or so later) is a pretty cool idea. Definitely not something I’d have considered until it was brought up.
And man, can you believe they broke into Gringotts? And escaped on a fucking dragon? How cool is that? I wonder how that dragon’s doing now, you know, with being blind and all…
This compelling story has torn me apart from book end. I’m grateful for the happy ending, but I wish I could stay in this world a little bit longer… I suppose it’s about time to contact my Potterhead friends and demand the best fan fiction they can find. I really don’t know what to do with myself now, though. How can any other series match up to how this series has completely screwed with my emotions? Few books have truly managed to get me as invested as this series has. I don’t know what else to read…
J.K. Rowling, you have done me a great (dis)service. I don’t know how repay you. Thank you for this series.
Recommend? Definitely, but I can’t think of a single person (aside from my siblings) who hasn’t read these books.
Soundtrack: “Hedwig’s Theme” by John Williams because, well, why not? It’s pretty self-explanatory, no? And God, Hedwig…