Monday, July 30, 2007

Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows isn't half bad

I read the latest Harry Potter installment last weekend in-between writing emails, travelling to Bristol & attending a wedding and thoroughly enjoyed it. Yes, I am happy to admit that I am an adult & I read the Harry Potter novels.

Because what’s there not to like about escapist literature, especially when it grips the reader so successfully? Neatly plotted, the narrative curve has maintained momentum through all seven novels, flagging only slightly in the over-long sixth Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince. In Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows, Rowling ties up all the loose ends from the previous novels, often going back to characters mentioned only briefly in preceding volumes to drive the narrative forward, and notching up an impressive death count amongst all inhabitants, human & otherwise of her magical world.

Moving away from the familiar boarding school year format, The Deathly Hallows takes the format of a grail quest outside the confines of Hogwarts school for wizards, revealing Rowling’s thorough knowledge of the mythology of the ancient civilisations, from the Viking sagas to Greek tragedy. Although the themes of The Deathly Hallows revolve around death, despair and depression, the novel moves at a cracking pace & it’s impossible to read this, the seventh and final story, without being moved by the fates of characters whose progress we have followed through the six previous novels. Rowling’s light, unencumbered style and easy dialogue has made of all her Harry Potter novels blinding good reads, although her sloppy grammar and over use of adverbs tends to rankle on subsequent readings.