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#1 of 34 Old 01-25-2012, 02:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok - I know, I know, Harry Potter has been out forever, but I'm just now getting to read them and am in love!!! 

 

 

I refuse to watch any of the movies until I finish the series.  I'm almost done with The Order of the Phoenix right now.  Any mamas out there want to discuss the books with me???  My oldest (who read them when they came out) doesn't want to talk about them with me - I'm not cool enough, I guess ;)


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#2 of 34 Old 01-27-2012, 12:33 PM
 
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Ah, to have that delectable, virgin Potter experience!  Never having read the books before, new plot twists and turns revealed slowly. I envy you.  The only thing better was the aching in anticipation of Jo finishing the next book.  Three long years between Goblet of Fire and Order of the Phoenix! 

I was thoroughly irritated with Harry by the end of Oder of Phoenix.  What a snot he was! lol.gif  I got it that he was in the throes of teen angst, fearful for his life and Dumbledore had essentially abandoned him. Doesn't mean I wanted to have to live with it.

 

It's a big, rich story.  JKRowling says it needed severe editing, that there was too much going on.  Maybe so, but it became my very favorite, mostly because there was soooo much going on! What a detailed world!


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#3 of 34 Old 02-01-2012, 07:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Due to so much schoolwork, I have STILL yet to finish the Order of the Phoenix...hopefully tonight.  I do at this point want to strangle Umbridge, though ;)


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#4 of 34 Old 02-02-2012, 05:47 AM
 
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Due to so much schoolwork, I have STILL yet to finish the Order of the Phoenix...hopefully tonight.  I do at this point want to strangle Umbridge, though ;)


Hope you are enjoying it. At dinner last night, our family discussed "favourite book from the series". I was a little surprised that both kids picked Order of the Phoenix. They thought Grimmauld Place and the Ministry were intriguing settings, the DA was cool and loved the Fred and George humour. They didn't mention angsty teen Harry though - that's my difficulty with that book, I think, along with what I thought was an overall flimsy motivation/goal/plot device for Voldemort (can't say too much because I'm not sure where you are in the book).  

 

 

 

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#5 of 34 Old 02-02-2012, 09:22 AM
 
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Hope you are enjoying it. At dinner last night, our family discussed "favourite book from the series". I was a little surprised that both kids picked Order of the Phoenix. They thought Grimmauld Place and the Ministry were intriguing settings, the DA was cool and loved the Fred and George humour. They didn't mention angsty teen Harry though - that's my difficulty with that book, I think, along with what I thought was an overall flimsy motivation/goal/plot device for Voldemort (can't say too much because I'm not sure where you are in the book).  

 

 

 


 

I'm not quite sure what you're specifically referring to, but I gotta say that the life-threatening danger Harry, Hermione and Ron were in all the time was ridiculous.  I know the action was a huge part of what made the books riveting and fun.  But what the heck, Dumbledore! Snape was right, you needed to keep a better eye on Harry, especially when he was an ickle firsty in Sorcerer's Stone. Even with the information (motivation/goal/plot device) revealed at the end of the story, it's still illogical and over the top from my perspective as a reader. 


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#6 of 34 Old 02-02-2012, 11:33 AM
 
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I'm not quite sure what you're specifically referring to, but I gotta say that the life-threatening danger Harry, Hermione and Ron were in all the time was ridiculous.  I know the action was a huge part of what made the books riveting and fun.  But what the heck, Dumbledore! Snape was right, you needed to keep a better eye on Harry, especially when he was an ickle firsty in Sorcerer's Stone. Even with the information (motivation/goal/plot device) revealed at the end of the story, it's still illogical and over the top from my perspective as a reader. 


 

Answer, but it's a spoiler....

 

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

 

Voldemort's rabid need to obtain the prophecy from the Ministry and to learn what had been predicted always seemed to be misplaced to me. He's regaining physical and magical strength, organizing his command structure, seeking out supporters who have been scattered and in hiding, consolidating his power.......he's a busy guy with a lot to do, yk? Yet, he spends vast amounts of time and energy to obtain this prophecy - which in the end was basically a warning of something he already knew - that there was a boy child who could defeat Voldemort. The stuff about "neither can live while the other survives" is important to Harry, since it predicts that he'll have to kill Voldemort, but really, it's not crucial knowledge for Voldermort. It's not like Voldemort would have had any intention of letting Harry live, no matter what else Voldemort planned or needed to do to regain his supreme position in the wizarding world.

 

I don't know, the end-goal seemed kind of anti-climactic to me. I get how it set up the ultimate conflict and Harry's sacrifice, but as a plot device to drive all the action for almost 900 pages, it seemed weak.   

 

 

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#7 of 34 Old 02-02-2012, 04:50 PM
 
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Ohh, got it! And I agree.  That was the big reveal? Kind of a let-down. 

 

Lisoula, you need to tell us where you are in the book! 


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#8 of 34 Old 02-03-2012, 04:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just finished the part where Harry used Umbridge's fireplace to visit Sirius & ask why James was so cruel to Snape at his age, and Harry & Hermonie just found out Hagrid brought his giant half-brother back from the mountains & has him in the Forbidden Forest.


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#9 of 34 Old 02-04-2012, 05:43 PM
 
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My girls are getting read the Potter series.  I read them years ago and am enjoying rereading the series, this time out loud.  (The girls are 7 and 5.)

 

I totally agree with ollyoxenfree about the weak motivation for Voldemort, which was a big complaint in both the book and the movie-- especially in the movie!  The best I can ascertain is that Voldemort is overly obsessed with Harry Potter as his character flaw (not on Rowlings' part.  Throughout the books Voldemort is brought down by his own obsession with Harry.)

 

In the end, as much fun as it was to read Phoenix, it is my least favorite book.  I felt cheated in the end.  I read it ravenously even though Rowling needed the editor to whack her upside the head, and the ending left me underwhelmed.  It was, however, merely the dimmest of an incredibly rich series.  Half-Blood Prince was fantastic, in my opinion, and Deathly Hallows held its own right to the very end (I won't say any more!)  Rowling managed to finish the series with the entire world breathing down her back, and she did it superbly. 

 

So, if you are enjoying Phoenix, then you are in for a treat for the rest of the series.

 

My dh and I finished watching the movies.  I've always been just a hair disappointed in the movies as wonderful as they are.  I think mainly because the way the stories are pared down doesn't always meet with my approval.  However, we as a family are having a blast with both the books and the movies.  We just finished my favorite (book and movie) Prisoner of Azkaban.  


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#10 of 34 Old 02-04-2012, 06:52 PM
 
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I'm a bit literal-minded, and the movies simply never satisfied. By my standards the movies were never going to satisfy. Example, poor Emma Watson was too pretty, not plain enough. Hair wasn't frazzled enough. 

 

I still enjoyed them, went to several midnight showings, helped my kids dress up.  Followed along with the celebrity news.  Analyzed them endlessly. 

 

I'm changing my statement, Half-Blood Prince is my favorite book, too.  smile.gif

 

 

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I just finished the part where Harry used Umbridge's fireplace to visit Sirius & ask why James was so cruel to Snape at his age

 

 

Oooooh, that was a good one! Harry's world was being rocked.  To my mind Snape was already firmly in that moral grey area, a sympathetic baddy.  Time for Harry to get a new perspective. 


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#11 of 34 Old 02-08-2012, 05:56 PM
 
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DD has been begging me to read these!  I did allow her to read the books and watch the first 3 movies but, the 4th movie is rated PG13 (she just turned 10) so, I haven't let her watch the movies past three.

 

She asked me if I would please read the books and then watch the movies before I give a final decision and that she will respect any decision I make.  I thought that was pretty mature of her.  So, I've watched the first movie and am reading the first book.  Only, what, 6 more to go?

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DD has been begging me to read these!  I did allow her to read the books and watch the first 3 movies but, the 4th movie is rated PG13 (she just turned 10) so, I haven't let her watch the movies past three.

 

She asked me if I would please read the books and then watch the movies before I give a final decision and that she will respect any decision I make.  I thought that was pretty mature of her.  So, I've watched the first movie and am reading the first book.  Only, what, 6 more to go?


I think that the fourth movie is fine for a 10yo.  But maybe I'm a little lax (not as lax as my mother who let us rent Texas Chainsaw Massacre when I was 11!) but I think that if you sat with her through it to maybe explain what is happening then you will find that it's really OK, though it does bring up some more subjects that might be a bit more mature than what the last three touched on.  If anything, I would say that a 10yo might be bored with the stories and movies before the themes get too controversial.  They don't get that far, I don't think..  Death, for sure (I won't spoil anything), sacrifice, cruelty, the slow, tragic creation of an evil being.... grey areas between good and evil, too.  That's what you'll be touching on, for starters.  In between all that will be Rowling's magical, often hilarious world which is so wonderful and fun.  So good.  I hope you let her read them!

 

I plan on slowly reading Harry Potter to my younger girls.  We are ready to read the fourth one, and I do plan to let them watch the movie with me.  After all, they've seen the Lord of the Rings.  

 

Well, maybe I do have a touch of my mother in me........

 


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#13 of 34 Old 02-09-2012, 07:22 PM
 
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I make my kids read the books before they can see the movies. My 10 (almost 11) yr old has stalled out on 4. Just because it's so durn big in comparison to the others I think. She really liked the first 3 and got about halfway thru 4 before getting distracted with other books. I did tell her the ending (heresy I know, but she's _very_ sensitive/anxious and her friends had already told her many spoilers) and maybe she'll pick it back up sometime. I did read them all when she got into them because I wanted to know what she was getting into since she's pretty sensitive. 

 

Amcal, I haven't seen the movie for 4 (see above, DD1 needs to finish the book first), but it's the first of the books where someone other than a bad guy dies. There is a death of a character (not someone we're attached to, but not a bad guy) right at the beginning of the book. There are other non-bad guy deaths, too, but I won't say more for fear of a spoiler. That's what sets this one apart from the first three for me (plus the fact that it's three times as thick). SO, if dd1 would finish the book I probably would let her see the movie, but she's been working on it for 6-9 months now and I don't see her finishing any time soon. DD2 (8) says she wants to read it now that she's finished 3 and I'm not going to stop her, but I'm not going to encourage it either. She's reading other stuff right now, too. 


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#14 of 34 Old 02-10-2012, 10:19 PM
 
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My DD has read all the books but has only been allowed to watch the first 3 movies because they're PG.  I think using you imagination when reading the books is different than having violence spoon-fed to you in a movie. Whtch is why I'm going to read them and then watch them before I let her watch the 4th one.  

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The movies I've watched, 1, 2, 3, and both parts of 7 (grabbed my chance while it was in the theater) were not overly graphic in their depiction of violence. I actually thought the books were more graphic. 


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The movies I've watched, 1, 2, 3, and both parts of 7 (grabbed my chance while it was in the theater) were not overly graphic in their depiction of violence. I actually thought the books were more graphic. 


Agreed.  Like I said before, I think younger kids would be bored by the movies if anything.  Not that they are free of violence, but if they have already read the books there are no surprises.


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#17 of 34 Old 02-11-2012, 04:06 PM
 
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Agreed.  Like I said before, I think younger kids would be bored by the movies if anything.  Not that they are free of violence, but if they have already read the books there are no surprises.



Good point.  Reading the book Chamber of Secrets, I thought the portion where Harry hears a voice in the wall saying, Kill! Kill! was truly chilling.  The scene in the movie just couldn't compare.


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#18 of 34 Old 02-11-2012, 05:39 PM
 
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Good point.  Reading the book Chamber of Secrets, I thought the portion where Harry hears a voice in the wall saying, Kill! Kill! was truly chilling.  The scene in the movie just couldn't compare.

And the Half Blood Prince's book and the effect on Harry was positively chilling in the book.  The movie dropped most of that, focussing instead on the development of other characters.  I was profoundly disappointed in HBP as a movie because the book was one of my favorites.  

 

I'm having a hard time writing without spoiling too much.
 

 


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#19 of 34 Old 03-07-2012, 04:42 PM
 
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In the end, as much fun as it was to read Phoenix, it is my least favorite book.  I felt cheated in the end.  I read it ravenously even though Rowling needed the editor to whack her upside the head, and the ending left me underwhelmed.  It was, however, merely the dimmest of an incredibly rich series.

worse than the goblet of fire??? my least favorite of the books AND the movies.. maybe I need to re-read it and find something redeeming about it.

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#20 of 34 Old 03-07-2012, 05:59 PM
 
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Goblet of Fire had Ludo Bagman, who was a disappointing waist of time.  Similar to the Hagrid and the Giants story in Order of the Phoenix.  A whole lot of build up for not much. 


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#21 of 34 Old 03-07-2012, 06:09 PM
 
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My favorite was PoA and the 5th and 6th probably tied for least favorite. I didn't dislike any of them but I thought in OOTP there was too much angst and in HBP not enough happened. I did think they were both pretty good on the whole.

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#22 of 34 Old 03-07-2012, 07:13 PM
 
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We just finished rereading Goblet, and, yeah, it is my next least favorite in the series.  Yes, I  liked it better than Phoenix, because I thought the ending of Goblet was emotional and powerful--one of the best endings of the series I thought-- and I loved the Moody character.  It did need editing, just like Phoenix.  Bagman's character was useful, and in the movie the villain was a bit too obvious because Bagman was edited out (I watched it having already read the book though).  The ending of Phoenix left me disappointed, actually really irritated.  The story had promise, and I liked Harry's new turn of character--we are rereading it at this moment-- and I thought it set up the remainder of the series nicely.  Dolores Umbridge was delightfully frustrating and Belatrix Lestrange is such a cool villainess.  But in the end I thought, "That was it?  Did I miss something?  All of this--and the death of a once fabulous but ultimately wasted character?"  And, again, I thought the book still needed some more editing.   

 

So, yeah, I personally thought that Phoenix was the weakest of the two weakest books.  The other thing that I did love about Goblet was that it was so much better as a movie.  As fun as the movies were--especially once the magic became faster and way more dangerous looking-- they always disappointed me.  #1 is almost painful to watch now for me (and with 2 kids I get to watch it over and over and over again!)  #2 is better, only occasionally annoying (oh, but, Richard Harris.  Loved him as an actor, but watching him was like visiting my grandpa--scared he was going to to drop dead in front of me every time he held his breath one second too long)  #3 I really liked in general and it remains my favorite book and movie as well.  Goblet, like I said, not too disappointing.  But the rest?  Some wonderful moments, wonderful casting and acting for the most part, but all left me feeling like it could somehow could have been so much better.

 

Of course, everyone will have their own opinions, and I just won't argue.  I loved something about every book, and enjoyed reading every one, and now rereading them (outloud--even better!) to my daughters. I am having so much fun with all of it.  My hat is off to Rowling, who I felt pulled off a coup by finishing the series so nicely, with all the world peering over her shoulder expecting her to turn out a masterpiece.  Talk about pressure!  I am deeply impressed that she pulled it off.


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#23 of 34 Old 03-07-2012, 09:10 PM
 
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Wondering what you all think is a good age to start reading harry to a kid? I keep arguing with myself over whether dd (5) is ready. She hasn't shown signs of being particularly sensitive to scary stuff in general. The biggest phase she went through being scared of something was raccoons/wolves due to a dream. To this day I think she still believes an actual raccoon was in her closet when she woke. She mentions it occassionally. But raccoons are real, and have sharp teeth and claws and theres probably one in our yard *right now*. voldemort is clearly not real. Then I think about how some stuff is pretty dark.. and might cross a line for a 5yo. But then maybe that isn't in the 1st book, and by the time we';re on book 2 she'd be 6, a little more mature, a little more ready for book 2.. and so on. but then i consider intellectual readiness. Is the story line too complex? Can she appreciate it yet? Probably not.. but maybe she can get "enough" to enjoy it and its okay? But then I think if she's having her initiation into potter at 5, maybe finishing the series around 12 if its a book a year, then I convince her to reread a few years later so she can totally fully appreciate it, she already sorta knows how it ends! so then by the time she's reading it and can appreciate it, a little magic is gone. And I feel guilt for "stealing" it too young! Ahh, help! What would you do, start some lovely mom daughter bonding in the evenings, or wait?


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#24 of 34 Old 03-08-2012, 06:54 AM
 
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Personally, I'd wait until she shows interest. No need to push it on her. There are many wonderful books out there appropriate for 5 yr olds and unless she's really wanting to read about Harry I'd wait. I think she will be more excited by it when she's wanting to read it. My girls were too sensitive at 5. Dd1 has always been exceptionally sensitive to suspense. Dd1 didn't start reading it until about 4th grade (9) and dd2 followed suit at 7. Dd1 heard about it from school friends and it was super exciting to her and she was really "into" it. It was the first book she really read for pleasure. We then did a read aloud of it after dd1 finished it because it seemed a little hard for dd2 to read on her own. Then we watched the first movie. Dd2 then read it on her own not long after that. I'm glad we waited.


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#25 of 34 Old 03-08-2012, 07:36 AM
 
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LiLStar, if you read it and she enjoys it, there is no waiting until she is 6 to read the second, nor the third and onward.  Of course, I'm such a pushover.  As far a complexity, well, I read The Hobbit to my oldest at 5, very slowly with good voices--so much fun.  Then she talked her way into me reading LOTR to her.  Not as scary as I remembered.  She nearly dropped the ball near the end of the Two Towers in a boring chapter.  I occasionally wold ask her something like "Do you know what just happened?"  in a mysterious "did you catch that little tidbit back there" tone of voice.  Most of the time she could tell me what was happening, and sometimes I would explain, always in a "this is so cool" voice, not in a teacher's "summarize last night's chapter" voice.

 

Now she is 7yo.  We did indeed finish LOTR, then we started back into HP.  She had always refused to read the second, even though I told her about the monster.  Then she wanted to skip straight to the third when I told her about the dementors (can you tell she loves monsters?).  Anyhow, my 5yo has been listening this whole time, and she mostly understands what's going on, though I don't think she would have been interested in the series if she had been oldest.  They use my crochet hooks to give their paper dolls broomsticks to fly on.  :)

 

There is a lot of explaining to do when you read this kind of book to a little kid.  In the case of the LOTR, it lead to me borrowing stacks of books from the library on medieval knights and warfare so we could see a hauberk and a siege tower.  In HP the explanations are simpler, but still you'll need to provide context here and there.  (My girls, BTW, are "writing" with all the bird feathers lying around.  I found instructions on how to cut a quill for writing, but ours are all wrecked.  One day!)


"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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#26 of 34 Old 03-08-2012, 11:50 AM
 
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SweetSilver, it sounds like you guys are having a lot of fun!

 

 


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SweetSilver, it sounds like you guys are having a lot of fun!

 

 


Oh, man, this ex-thespian is in Seventh Heaven.  I won't even let dh read them the books to them Sheepish.gif.  The fifth book is presenting something of a challenge.  Moody has to sound different from Sirius who has to sound different from Lupin, Mr. Weasley, etc etc.  Hermione, Ginny, and Cho have to sound different.  I try to channel the actors in the movies, that helps.  Loads and loads of fun.  Especially when Mrs. Weasley yells, that is even better if it is possible.

 


"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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#28 of 34 Old 03-11-2012, 02:59 PM
 
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can you come read to me?? smile.gif

 treehugger.gif *CPST*  mama to my three year old DS1 broc1.gif1.31.09 and wedded to angel 8.07  hola.gif

DS 2  waterbirth.jpg 8/18/12!!

 
 

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#29 of 34 Old 03-11-2012, 06:26 PM
 
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can you come read to me?? smile.gif


That would be loads of fun!  But my kids have no idea what an English accent is supposed to sound like, apart from the movies, so I don't feel self-conscious reading them.  And my husband already knows I'm a bit weird to begin with, so no problem there.........

 

We are now nearing the middle of Phoenix, and at this point I am questioning why I put it below Goblet on my list.  We'll see as I remember that my main issue was with the ending.  Maybe, though I'll have to revise my favorites this time around.

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"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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#30 of 34 Old 03-20-2012, 09:30 AM
 
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Lisoula-- how is Order of the Phoenix going?

 

We just finished the excellent chapter "Career Advice" and (sigh.....) moving onto "Grawp".  For a while I was second guessing myself as to why I placed this book last of them all.  The first 3/4 of the book is among the best of the series, but the ending..... I'm starting to dread going on.  It's been a while since I've read it, but it's starting to come back to me.  We'll see if my previous opinion holds.  

 

It's funny, Goblet of Fire is so sloppy by comparison (SPEW?  I can only take Dobby in tiny doses, and was more than pleased to see him edited out of the screenplay) yet the ending made up for the rest of the story (for me, anyway).  

 

Like I said, we'll see if my reaction is the same.


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