J.K. Rowling






Allen & Unwin, July 2007
Reviewed by Sally Roddom

Magical murder and mayhem runs rampant in this final installment of the Harry Potter series - the crescendo of the series - the final battle! Was it worth the wait? Do all the ends get tied up? Did author J.K. Rowling keep up the standard to the very end? Yes, yes and YES!!!

The story opens just after the last ended. Dumbledore has been murdered, and Voldemort and the Death Eaters have taken over the wizarding world. Evil rules, and killings are a daily occurrence. All is in disarray. The Order of the Phoenix scatters as they each go undercover to escape death.

Harry, Hermione and Ron set off on the quest set by Dumbledore. They are to find the Horcruxes and destroy them. Of course, this is not as easy as it sounds -- first of all they need to figure out what, and where, the Horcruxes are. Then they will need to work out how to destroy them. Constantly on the run as they try to evade capture, the trio find there are some magical people left who are willing to help, and there are some spectacular escapes when they fall into the hands of Voldemort's followers.

During the search they come across 'Deathly Hallows' which is not a place but three artifacts that together will give the owner tremendous powers. Harry has one of them already, then he obtains the second, but should he stop pursuing the Horcruxes and go for the final artifact?

Rowling said that two main characters would die, but in this final war many well-loved minor characters are also killed, bringing tears to my eyes more than once. Initially it is Hermione's magical skills that get them out of the vast majority of sticky situations, but it is Harry who has to find the strength and courage to face Voldemort in the final showdown that the whole series has been building up to.

Well written, edge of the seat stuff. I did put the book down once or twice, not because I found it easy, not because it was a 'boring' bit, but to lengthen the time before I arrived at the end; the end of years of enjoyment and anticipation. Now I am going to wait a year or so -- then go back and read the whole series again.

Aug 2007 review originally published on Murder & Mayhem


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