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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced, intriguing journey!
GREAT book! For people 10 and older.

Very fast paced. The main characters move from narrow escape to narrow escape. They must be exhausted!

All of the many locations in the book come alive and readers can enjoy a fantastic journey through places both new and familiar.

The plot relies on enough familiar magical concepts that adventures...
Published on July 22 2007 by Laura Duhan Kaplan

1.0 out of 5 stars Stolen!
The book has clear;y been stolen from the Toronto Public Library! I have requested that it be replaced but no response yet,
Published 20 months ago by Sarah J. Ward

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced, intriguing journey!, July 22 2007
Laura Duhan Kaplan (Vancouver BC) - See all my reviews
GREAT book! For people 10 and older.

Very fast paced. The main characters move from narrow escape to narrow escape. They must be exhausted!

All of the many locations in the book come alive and readers can enjoy a fantastic journey through places both new and familiar.

The plot relies on enough familiar magical concepts that adventures don't seem to be contrived, and adds just enough new magical trends to keep us curious.

Every important character gets to show their best and bravest side. Only a very few turn out to be irredeemably evil.

Much that is mysterious in the stories of Dumbledore and Snape is explained.

The sad and scary parts are balanced with plenty of humorous, ludicrous, laugh-out-loud details.

The overall ending is the only satisfying one that is possible given the series and its audience. Thank goodness!

Criticisms? Given all the deaths and heroic acts, I should have cried a lot more. But the author's emphasis is on plot rather than emotion. And we didn't get enough of Ginny.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great end (very minor spoilers), July 21 2007
A great end, but perhaps not the best book of the series. It has great action throughout, but is missing the whimsical-ness (not a word, but go with me here...) of the rest of the books. As a result, I got a bit bogged down in the middle, where Harry, Ron and Hermionie are travelling from place to place. Some ugly, and uncomfortably true emotions surface in characters that seemed previously unfalliable. There is something very adult in this book; the desperate fight against Voldemort's forces and the sense of isolation in Harry continues to grow. But the magical Rowling touch is there. Mysteries and side plots combine to create a brilliant climax at the end. It was the epilouge that I thought to be a bit anti-climatic (a bit tried I thought). On the plus side (and there are many!) the book definately leaves you with something to think about, and is a most worthy end to a wonderful series.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Storytelling to the End, July 22 2008
Debra Purdy Kong (British Columbia) - See all my reviews
The time has come. Harry's about to turn seventeen which means that all of the charms protecting him at the Dursley's house will disappear and he must leave Privet Drive before Lord Voldemort arrives to kill him. Needless to say, the first sixty pages of HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS are riveting and by the time the action slows, you're ready for a long deep breath. Anyone who's read the previous books knows that Harry's mission is to find and destroy the remaining Horcruxes that contain bits of Voldemort's soul, and then kill Voldemort. No easy task. The Dark Lord now controls the Ministry, the Giants, Dementors, Azkaban, and many others. Spies are everywhere and there's a price on Harry's head. But Harry's one clever--if not lucky--teenager and, with Ron and Hermione's help, he launches the most difficult quest of his life.

For a 607 page book, the story moved incredibly fast, and I couldn't put it down in many places. In slower sections, Rowling does a great job of showing Harry's anguish, impatience, frustration, and grief over those he's lost. Harry's mission prevents him from attending his final year at Hogwarts, so readers don't get to see other key characters as much, yet this only exemplifies Henry's sense of displacement and loneliness as the months drag on.

The ending was satisfying on many levels, though the epilogue was a bit disappointing. A conversation between seven or eight characters--many of them new--was hard to follow. There was no back story and almost no inner monologue to shed light on what had transpired with familiar characters since the final confrontation. Still, for Harry Potter fans, THE DEATHLY HALLOWS is a must read and it saddens me that the saga's come to an end.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply perfect, July 23 2007
Patrick J. Sullivan (Miami, FL United States) - See all my reviews
This review contains Book 7 SPOILERS.

The end of the saga of Harry and his friends is enjoyable and satisfying on every level. While still taking advantage of her gifts for humor and character development, author J.K. Rowling has delivered by far the most suspense-filled entry in the series. Because it was book 7, almost nobody was untouchable in principle, so there was genuine concern for the fates of characters such as Hermione, the various Weasleys, Neville and Luna, etc. In some cases, this concern was sadly justified.

Though few would question her gift for telling an enjoyable tale, at times Rowling's credentials as a serious author have been downplayed, even by her admirers. While even I would admit that her main talent may not lie in constructing great prose, her ability to plot has never been given the credit it deserves. Many of the events in this book were clearly foreshadowed in the prior books, even back to book 1.

Some readers feel that, on the contrary, many of the book 7 revelations seemed tacked on to Rowling's pre-existing vision. But in pretty much every case, the newly revealed piece clicks satisfyingly into place. Specifically, the Snape revelations place the crucial book 5 chapter, Snape's Worst Memory, into the proper context. The day wasn't his worst memory merely because Snape was unpopular as always or because James and Sirius were tormenting him as usual. It was terrible because in his anger, Snape threw away the only thing that ever mattered to him. And he spent most of his life trying to make up for that - though he kicked and screamed every step of the way.

In fact, the redemptions of Snape, Wormtail, Draco, and Narcissa are believable because they are partial and grudging. Kreacher's 180° attitude shift is credible because we have seen how house elves tend to become ardently attached to (or turned against) a family or person. The return of prodigal son Percy to the fold was the only conversion that seemed a little forced, given what we've seen of his brittle pride. But I was still glad for the sake of the Weasley parents that he returned.

So much of the story's popularity has related to the various speculations about how the series' questions would be answered. And yet what some see as a negative is true: most of the answers to the big questions have never been obscure. Of course Voldemort would lose; Harry would win; he and Ginny would end up together if they ended up alive at all; Ron and Hermione would likewise link up. And Snape has obviously been on the side of good all along. Those who believed otherwise were fooling themselves (or had been misled by the movies into thinking Harry and Hermione had any possibility of a romantic future). But this predictability of the what does not change the fact that many millions of readers were desirous of seeing the how. The HP series will never do well in Cliff's Notes form. Boiling it down to who did what and when misses the entire point of the pleasure of reading the series.

What made the tone of book 5 so dark wasn't its deadly finale, but the blow that Harry's confidence in his father and godfather had received when he saw the undiluted James and Sirius in Snape's memory. Book 7 threatens Harry's even greater confidence in Dumbledore, whom he knows personally far better than he knew Sirius - or whom he thinks he knows, until Rita Skeeter's poison pen works its damage (BTW, were we ever told why Hermione can't continue to enforce Rita's silence?) But scandal-mongering Rita isn't entirely inventing everything. Harry has to deal with the fact that even the heroic-seeming Dumbledore has some skeletons in his closet.

The many themes of the series have been thoroughly explored by Rowling and discussed by her readers - most notably that of redemption. But power and the desire to wield it is always at the forefront of her thought, too. Where the young Dumbledore went wrong was in arrogantly planning to fix all the world's ills, even if some innocents had to suffer in the process. Even the older Dumbledore made this mistake, we find, in trying to destroy the ring Horcrux - which is also a powerful Hallow. Harry too falls prey for a time to the lure of the wrong quest - seeking the powers of the Hallows rather than the destruction of the powers of the Horcruxes - and this is when he is at his most vulnerable. In fact, at times Harry seemed to be in danger of repeating many of the same mistakes he had made in earlier books - for instance, encouraging his link with Voldemort. But the older Harry truly has become wiser, and he listens to the good advice of his friends.

Without Hermione, Harry would have been lost too many times to count. The series has often flirted with the danger of making him too dependent on her foresight and omniscience. Although the middle third of book 7 is the best long display of the interplay among the three main characters, she does come across as a little too perfect - and Ron as more than a little too unreliable. But at least Ron finally learns what Harry has been trying to tell him all along: that it isn't about not being scared, it's about somehow doing the right thing despite that. And unlike in prior entries in the series, in book 7 Hermione doesn't end up being completely right about everything that Harry is wrong about. Even she has limits, and Harry is able to make the necessary sacrifice without her guidance.

Bellatrix's long-deserved death is very satisfying, and it is fitting that her cockiness does her in, as Sirius's had done him in at her hands. I was glad that Hermione doesn't mess around when blasting Greyback away from Lavender. Unless I missed it, though, the Lavender werewolf story was never followed up on. I could have used a little resolution of minor things like that instead of the nineteen years later Epilogue, which was the only part of the story that felt forced and left a bit of a bad taste. I understand why Rowling did it - to make it plain to readers that the story is over, the next twenty years are calm, there will be no tales of Harry, Ginny, Hermione, and Ron fighting dark magic as young adults - but for just that reason I didn't want to have any possible future avenues closed off. Oh well.

In fact, rather than an epilogue the book could have used a scene showing Fred's sacrifice being acknowledged and mourned by his family and friends - particularly his parents, George, Ron, Harry and Lee Jordan. The superb Luna Lovegood is underused in this book; although she flits in and out of the story, she doesn't really get to display her qualities except briefly, and she is not granted any particular distinction compared to her sterling showing at the Ministry in book 5. Neville is given his moment of glory, but Ginny is somewhat neglected. We have always known in the general sense how important Ginny and Harry would ultimately be to each other, but we still haven't been actually given much of them together. Even when they were together in book 6, it was only for a few chapters. We know that Ginny is powerful and brave; it would have been nice to see her getting to display that more - though I assume Rowling felt constrained by the fact that Ginny and Luna are still minors. And I wouldn't have minded seeing more of Hagrid as well.

I certainly don't demand a lot of blood. I had always felt that one of the truly major characters - probably Ron, but perhaps Hermione - would have to go, but I'm not sorry to be wrong. I still feel that Harry's side gets off lightly in the final conflict, even though three fairly important characters do die. It is sad, though believable, that the death toll falls so heavily on the Tonks/Lupin family. Given the very protective nature of the Hogwarts teachers, I am a bit surprised that all the major ones seem to have survived while so many students died. The off-screen deaths of Lupin and Tonks, leaving behind an orphaned son as Harry himself had been left behind, were to me more distressing than Fred's death. From the Harry point of view, Lupin's death severs the last truly close link to Harry's lost family. Perhaps from the authorial point of view this is what allows Harry to move forward beyond James and Lily, though I wouldn't think Lupin would have to die just for that.

Ten years ago, Minerva McGonagall exclaimed in the very first chapter of book 1: "He'll be famous - a legend - I wouldn't be surprised if today was known as Harry Potter day in the future. There will be books written about Harry. Every child in the world will know his name!" There is no possible way that Rowling could have known how right McGonagall was - is there?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Godric's Hollow and Potter's End, July 28 2007
This review is from: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7) [Adult Edition] (Hardcover)
Orphaned as a baby and subsequently raised (in the loosest possible terms) by his Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia, Harry's early years were thoroughly miserable. Although he had been told his parents had been killed in a car crash, in reality they were murdered by an evil wizard called Voldemort. Harry, however, somehow survived this attack and Voldemort subsequently disappeared for many years. Tracked down by an apparent giant called Hagrid on his eleventh birthday, Harry discovered he was a wizard and has since been attending Hogwarts - a very prestigious school for training young witches and wizards. His time has Hogwarts has provided also him with some of the happiest moments of his life : he has made friends for the first time (Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and Hagrid being the most notable) and has become the Seeker on Gryffindor's Quidditch team. (Gryffindor is Harry's house, while Quidditch is the most popular wizard sport). Unfortunately, it has also become apparent that Voldemort's disappearance was only temporary, and his desire to kill Harry has not lessened. In fact, according to a prophect, one of the pair must die at the other's hand. Now, having reached the final book of the series, Hogwarts is no longer the safe haven it once was. Albus Dumbledore, who had been the school's headmaster, was killed by Professor Snape at the end of "The Half-Blood Prince". This is a devastating blow - considered by many to be the greatest wizard of modern times, Harry in particular idolised him. Snape, the teacher who killed Dumbledore, had once been a loyal follower of Voldemort's - however, for some reason, Dumbledore had always trusted him.

Before Dumbledore died, he had been giving Harry some additional lessons on Voldemort's past. In an attempt to achieve immortality, Dumbledore believed that Voldemort had split his soul into seven peices : six parts were stored in horcruxes, with the seventh remaining in Voldemort's restored body. While even one of his horcruxes remains intact, Voldemort will never be truly dead. A Horcrux could be anything - though it is believed each item used held some significance to He Who Must Not Be Named. While some of the items have been already dealt with, Harry has decided to search for the remaining horcruxes and destroy them - before dealing with the Dark Lord himself. "The Deathly Hallows" sees Harry, Ron and Hermione on their final quest.

I really enjoyed "The Deathly Hallows", and it gives the series a great send-off. Harry, Ron and Hermione have a very difficult year : Harry's under attack from the off, the Ministry of Magic falls to Voldemort's forces early in the book, while Snape - Dumbledore's killer, and once more a Death Eater - is appointed Hogwart's headmaster. Although they never planned to return to Hogwarts, they are now on the run and spend the year living as renegades. Harry has a difficult time dealing with his mission - he feels ill-prepared, which is something he partly blames Dumbledore for. Furthermore, a recently published biography of his hero makes Harry question whether Dumbledore was quite the noble wizard he'd always believed.. It is, however, also a very sad book - and not only because the series is now at an end. With the final battle approaching and Voldemort's forces on the march, there are several characters killed - and they aren't all saved for the book's climax. Only one thing left me feeling a little unsatisfied - while all the major questions were answered, the epilogue left a few things frustratingly up in the air. Still, despite saying she's done with the wizarding world, it does give her the option to return to Hogwarts once again...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Horcruxes and Hallows (or, What you don't know CAN hurt you), July 27 2007
Amanda Richards (Georgetown, Guyana) - See all my reviews
This final book of the Harry Potter series can be compared to a large-scale game of magical snakes and ladders, or rather, snakes and portkeys, with a huge numbers of players moving around the board, magically or otherwise. However, in this game, not only can players get eaten by a snake, but they also face deadly obstacles, and some players actually die. Indeed, this is the bloodiest Potter of the series starting from the opening chapters, and the body count is way up there. The crux of the matter is, of course, who will reach the last square alive?

The book may look huge, but J.K. Rowling quickly zaps the reader with an Imperius Curse, and you will find it impossible to disobey her order not to put it down. There is so much action and so many revelations as the author ties up the loose ends, that you may have to retrace your steps ever so often to make sure you haven't missed a thing.

The main plot centers around Harry turning seventeen, at which time the Dursley's home will become even more dangerous to a young wizard than before. Assisted by the Order of the Phoenix, he narrowly escapes once again, and teams up with Ron and Hermione to do the bidding of their revered headmaster.

As we learned in the last book, there are bits of evil, black soul hidden in certain special places as a back up immortality system for Voldemort, and a large part of the book deals with rounding them up and the almost impossible task of destroying the darned things.

The horcrux destruction rate started to mount
The Dark Lord was livid and started to count
He scratched off the diary, crossed off the ring
What HE didn't know was he'd missed out one thing

To complicate matters, a mysterious symbol keeps popping up, leading to a heck of a history lesson, and a reunion with old friends.

A symbol supposed to be Grindelwald's sign
A circle, triangle, and also a line
The Hallows were more than a fictional tale
And featured high up on the magical scale

If you've been faithfully following the series, you will be very pleased to learn that many of the characters from the other books are assembled for this, the grand finale, and that this last book is truly the best of them all.

I can't wait for this one to come to the screen
Especially that super-sized big battle scene
Forget movie six, let's just cut to the end
Three cheers for the series that JK has penned!!!

Amanda Richards
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "I open at the close", July 23 2007
This review is from: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7) [Adult Edition] (Hardcover)
What can I say about this phenomenal ending to a phenomenal series? It was a fabulous ride to the end. So many things happened that had me crying, laughing and shouting out loud (I scared one of my kitties pretty bad during the last bit of the book.) Joann Rowling writes with such flair about Harry's many sadnesses, you can almost hear her sobbing as you read those particularly sad parts that she has wrought so cleverly. This was a highly entertaining story with many really scary bits interspersed with the gut wrenching laughs I've come to expect. I loved the form and flow and it is a pity that she chose to end it....but she ended it well with the possability of maybe revisiting the land of muggles and wizards, perhaps with the next generation? Who can say for sure? I know I'll read it over again and then read it to my small son. I so love books that encourage children to read and hope that J.K. Rowling writes many more books of fiction! Well done!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not quite what I expected but still great (possible spoilers), July 23 2007
Canadian Girl "CG" (Montreal, Quebec Canada) - See all my reviews
Wow, where to begin? After so many years of waiting with baited breath, it's finally done. I'll try to keep this as spoiler free as possible but forgive me if I slip up.

The good:
- The details about Snape and Dumbledore's past. JKR does a lot here to clear up the mystery of why Dumbledore always trusted Snape along with explaining Dumbledore's (until now) mysterious early life.

- The battles, especially the final one at Hogwarts. JKR infused them with lots of energy and tension, you could almost feel like you were there alongside the students.

- The resolution to the Harry vs Voldemort question. I know a lot of people perhaps feel slightly cheated here, they expected something more dramatic, end-of-the-worldish, but I liked how this battle ended up.

- There was a lot of humour in the book, more than I expected. A few times I actually laughed out loud. Also, some parts were really touching, especially when we learn about Snape's past and his lost love.

The Bad:

- The introduction of the Hallows felt rushed and confusing. It's like all of a sudden they decide to refocus on the Hallows instead of the Horcruxes and the transition didn't quite work.

- A lot of the deaths that were so trumpeted lacked any emotional impact at all. In fact, only one death really got to me, the rest just made me shrug my shoulders. Based on how JKR was talking before the book came out, I expected a lot more.

- The epilogue felt tacked on and a little too saccharine for me. I could have done without it, the book was good enough as it was.

- Some of the middle chapters tended to drag. A lot of Harry/Ron/Hermione popping from one place to another in search of various chapter of that is fine, four or five can be a bit much!

All in all, though, I think Deathly Hallows was a great final book. It answered 99% of the questions that I had floating about in my mind and was (for the most part) fast past and interesting to read. I don't think that many fans will be disappointed, I really wasn't.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JKR at her splendid best!!, July 24 2007
Amazon Customer (Belleville, ON, Canada) - See all my reviews
It was a privilege to read the conclusion of J.K.Rowling's wondrous 7 book epic. Masterfully conjured, it surpassed my desire for a fitting close to a series whose reach, surely, will never be parallelled throughout literary fictional history. With gratitude and a sense of melancholy, I heartily recommend Deathly Hallows and it's sister volumes.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The mass of Harry Potter fans will not be disappointed by the grand finale, July 22 2007
Lawrance M. Bernabo (The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
It is safe to say that no other book in the history of publishing has been more eager awaited than "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows." First novels are not going to have massive expectations and sequels like "Hannibal" might be eagerly awaited but you are not going to have over ten million people around the world all reading a book about Hannibal Lecter the first day it is published, let alone showing up to get their hands on it at the stroke of midnight. The pressure for J.K. Rowling to deliver under such circumstances was enormous and I have to believe that most of those readers who finished the book the day they got it are going to be happy with the way things played out.

I was out of town when I read this book and my biggest regret is that I did not re-read the last five chapters of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," because beyond Dumbledore's death I really did not remember anything specific and my bad memory was a minor distraction. Consequently, if you have not yet started Book 7, a quick refresher would help. But then I never paid attention to the speculation as to what would happen in the final book, being perfectly willing to let Rowling play out her grand design. I paid attention to speculation about the end of the original "Star Wars" trilogy and was convinced Boba Fett was the "other" spoken of by Yoda, so I felt no real need to be equally wrong this time. I read "The Lord of the Rings" and a lot of comic books so I naturally took Dumbledore's death with a grain of salt, and my only suspicion was that whatever would be required in the end for good to triumph over evil could well be someone's life.

The key thing going into the final book is that if Dumbledore can die, then anybody could end up a corpse. That being said, it was interesting to have Rowlgin's implicit assessment as to who constitutes a major character and who does not, because having heard that at least two major characters were going to die I was not even halfway through the book when I was thinking she had already met the quota. There are a couple dozen deaths in this book and there is a sense that they become a bit numbing. However, that is part of the endgame because each death cries out for the final victory. One of the strengths of this series is that these kids grow up, which means the situation became progressively mature (and so did the language), and that the characters become more shades of grey than black and white with each volume.

As for Severus Snape, it might be my age showing, but when Dumbledore said he trusted Snape completely I have accepted that as absolute gospel, perfectly aware that the keystone in that belief would not be made perfectly clear until the final book (my youngest daughter refuses to entertain such thoughts). Except for the inevitable final showdown between Harry and Voldermort, my biggest question was why Dumbledore absolutely trusted Snape (more so than who ends up with who or what happens to Hogwarts). I think the biggest success in the book is the payoff to the Snape element in the series. I will say that having finished the series they needed to show more of Snape's worst memory in the movie version of "Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix" (I know Rowling told the producers to put Kreacher back in when he was omitted from the script, and I wonder if originally the scene was longer because it clearly misses a key element).

I can appreciate that the more you are into the magical world of Harry Potter the more predictable the outcome might be, but that is an indication of how Rowling has constructed her narrative. Unlike the most recent volumes this final one is finally freed from having to set things up because now is the time to play everything out. Certainly things are explained, but I see that more as connecting the dots for the readers than adding new information. Personally, I am satisfied by the way things played out in this book and not once did I find myself being disappointed by how things played out. Yes, I was saddened by several things that happened, but also moved by many of the little moments that Rowling worked in this book. The one that stands out for me, for reasons that I cannot really articulate, is when Harry comes up with his explanation for why Dumbledore left a particular object in his will to Ron. I think Harry's explanation speaks to Rowling's relationship with her readers as well now that we have come to the end of all things.
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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7) [Adult Edition]
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7) [Adult Edition] by J. K. Rowling (Hardcover - July 21 2007)
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