Harry Potter has never played a sport while flying on a broomstick. He’s never worn a Cloak of Invisibility, befriended a giant, or helped hatch a dragon. All Harry knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley. Harry’s room is a tiny cupboard under the stairs, and he hasn’t had a birthday party in ten years.
But all that is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives by owl messenger: a letter with an invitation to a wonderful place he never dreamed existed. There he finds not only friends, aerial sports, and magic around every corner, but a great destiny that’s been waiting for him… if Harry can survive the encounter.
Obviously this is not the first time I’ve read this book – it’s probably the 10,000th time I’ve read this book. And each time I read it, I find new things within the story that I didn’t realise before. And this book is only 200 pages (approx), so it doesn’t take long to read the book. I read it in a couple of hours and then re-read the next in the series.
J.K. redefined magic/wizards with Harry Potter, and this series got boys to read (which is extremely hard for an author to do). I love that the book was rejected by almost all publishing houses before being picked up by Bloomsbury. It makes it feel like the underdog.
The characters are relatable and lovable. We all know a Hermione from school, and the Weasley twins. Hagrid’s dialogue is spot on and his kind nature makes him a favourite among young readers. J.K. Rowling even brought out a lot of humour with Professor Snape, and the author did a great job at blindsiding the reader with that twist at the end.
J.K Rowling has created a world where everything is mapped out. For example, Hagrid mentions he was expelled from Hogwarts, but we don’t find out why until the second book, and we don’t find out why Harry survived Voldemort’s attack until a few books later. I love it when an author takes the time to really map things out so that once you’ve read the whole series and you go back, you find little clues you never knew were there the first time around.
Sorry, but I have one fault: Harry asks too many rhetorical questions to himself and doubts himself too much. I know that given his upbringing, he would be unsure of what to do in most situations, but he constantly questions himself instead of just getting along with the story. It bogs down the story a little, and might bore the reader.
This is the first book in a seven book series, and mixes fantasy with adventure. It has every child (and adult!) reader wishing that Hogwarts really existed. I recommend this book to EVERYONE, because it’s amazing.
My Score: 9/10