Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling
Publication Date: 2007
Recommended Age Group: 12 and Up
Summary: One of the most complicated story lines in the Potter collection. It begins with Voldemort at the Malfoy Manor planning with his Death Eaters how to capture Harry Potter. They decide to do it when he is on the move. Meanwhile Harry is at the Dursley’s House waiting for some to help him and them escape. Dudley and Harry actually have a touching good-bye and we find that Dudley is grateful for Harry. Harry and company leave the house with seven Harry’s in tow (made with polyjuice potion) and Mad-Eye is killed in the escape, George looses and ear, and Harry manages to get away unharmed. Back at the Burrow, where everyone ends up, they are preparing for the wedding of Bill and Fleur and Harry, Ron, and Hermione are planning on how best to find the Horcruxes. Ron made the family ghoul look like him and wear his pajamas and he is pretending to be sick. Hermione put a spell on her parents to forget about her and had them more to Australia. The three of them find that Dumbledore left a will with things for each of them. Harry gets a snitch, Hermione The Tales of Beedle the Bard, and Ron gets the Deluminator.
While at the wedding everyone finds out that the ministry has been overthrown and Harry, Ron, and Hermione make a run for it. Hermione has this awesome beaded bad that magically expands to fit whatever she wants to inside. She ended having spare clothes, lots of books, a tent, food, and cookware, among other things, in there. They are on the run for quite some time and they don’t really learn much. The three of them get in a fight and Ron leaves. Harry and Hermione go to Godric’s Hollow where they see the place where Harry’s parents died and they meet up with Lord Voldemort and his snake Nagini who was posing as a witch.
Rita Skeeter capitalizes on the pain and loss of Dumbledore and writes a book about his life that has, like all her stories, some truth but mostly lies. It confuses Harry and makes him want to know the truth and wonder whether or not he should trust Dumbledore. While in hiding Harry finds the sword with the help of an unknown patronus that comes to help them find the sword. He has to dive into an icy pond which we are surprised to find Ron save him from.
The reunited three then go to Xenophilius Lovegood’s house where they learn about the Deathly Hallows and their original owners and of Luna’s absence. After they narrowly escape Harry makes the mistake of saying Voldemort’s name (made Taboo to help find Order members) and they are caught and sent to Malfoy Manor. After Hermione is tortured to gain information they escape with the help of Dobby and bring with them several other’s including a goblin and Mr. Ollivander the wandmaker. From Mr. Ollivander they learn that the Elder Wand does actually exist though it is not fully understood and they all decide that it is what Voldemort is currently after. From the goblin they learn of Gringotts and plan to break in and find one of the Horcruxes. Which they do and when it seems they are caught they escape on a dragon that had been kept down there to protect the vaults.
They know that the last Horcrux is at Hogwarts so the three go to Hogsmeade and are almost caught by Death Eaters when they are saved by Aberforth Dumbledore where they learn the truth of what happened to Albus’s sister and in that part of his life. They also learn of another secret tunnel to Hogwarts and find Dumbledore’s army ready and waiting to fight. They call members of the order of the phoenix and all fight Voldemort while Harry, Ron, and Hermione find the last Horcrux, the diadem and destroy it and the goblet. Voldemort kills Snape because he thinks that will help get to get better control of the Elder Wand. Harry is there while Snape is dying and captures his memories in a vial and later looks at them in the pensive. We learn that Snape was really a good guy and that Dumbledore was right to trust him. We also learn that he was in love with Harry’s mother Lily Potter.
Voldemort stops the fighting and asks Harry to give himself up and allows them to gather their dead and wounded. Harry leaves without anyone knowing. Harry does stop and tell Neville that he needs to make sure the snake Nagini dies. Harry gets the resurrection stone from the snitch, where it had been hiding, and bring back his parents, Lupin (who died in battle) and Sirius who support him on his walk to Voldemort. After another attempt at killing him Harry ends up at King’s Cross station where he has a long chat with Dumbledore and decides to come back and finish his mission.
In the end Harry defeats Voldemort because the Elder Wand, by some technicality is truly under his power. He saves the day and all is well. The Epilogue happens nineteen years later when Harry, Ginny, Ron, and Hermione are putting their children on the train to Hogwarts and everyone lives happily ever after.
Personal Notes: I loved this book. There were parts of it, though where you could really feel the 759 pages weighing you down. When they didn’t have a plan and Rowling kept going on and on about how they didn’t have a plan I finally shouted out loud, okay, we get it! Maybe that is a testament to her writing ability though because she brought me into a sense of desperation and hopelessness along with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. All around it was beautifully written and managed to expand my vocabulary while entertaining me. The book is a wonderful end to the Harry Potter Collection.
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