Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Ramblings: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

I don't have the audacity to call the below a 'review' for a number of reasons;

a) I didn't take any review notes;
b) It's 1:30am so this will hardly be coherent; and
c) Let's face it, you've all read it already.

There will be spoilers, so don't bitch at me.

I couldn't sleep the other night, so I ended up doing what I always do (and I know is very counter-inducive to sleep, thank you), which is flicking aimlessly through Pinterest on my phone. As I'm sure some of you know, 'fandoms' are very well represented on that website and it doesn't take long before you come across something Harry Potter related.

I clicked on one thing and then must have spent the next hour clicking on 'related items.' Facts about the movies (despite the fact that I hate the damn things), reminisces of first-time-readings, predictions of how the characters' lives turned out... I just scrolled and scrolled. Hey, when you can't sleep...

That's all fine, but I ended up with a desperate desire to read one of the books. Don't get me wrong, I love them but I hadn't touched one of them since 2010 when I read most of them (in the wrong order) in the Summer. I think it's because of the hype... you couldn't get away from Harry Potter for a while and it put me off. The films came out and the games, and J.K. Rowling is never far from the media... anyway, I just hadn't bothered, despite reading them fairly frequently before 2010 (I keep obsessive LibraryThing records).

Still, do you know when I last read Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire? No, nor do I, actually. That's a thing in itself - I've been tracking my reading since 2006 and this book features nowhere in my records, which means the last time I read it was pre-2006. It's just odd. I've reread the others two-four times each in that time, but I never touched this one... I wonder why.

When I left to meet Ellie and Charlotte on Saturday, it was the book I grabbed. I'd already decided to read a Harry Potter book, but I barely put any thought into which one it was going to be (clearly - I know, let's lug around the heaviest book I own while I go shopping all day! Yay!). Maybe I just figured it was the one I remembered the least, which it was.

So I started it... and the book I had been reading went out the window. These books are amazing. I think my four year break helped to reemphasise that... if I'm honest, I had been going off the whole concept. Over-hype in the media can do that, which is silly of me. 

It's a stupid time in the morning but I had to talk about it before I go to sleep and forget how I feel right now. Yes, the books have flaws. There are a few tiny issues that really need explaining, but it doesn't matter. It's the tiny details that make them amazing - Hermione trapping Rita Skeeter/beetle in an Unbreakable Jar, Dumbledore sending McGonagall to retrieve 'the big black dog that will no doubt be sat in Hagrid's pumpkin patch,' and Harry giving the twins enough money to set up a joke shop. The details are the reason I can't read Deathly Hallows without engaging a therapist's services beforehand.

It also occurred to me that I've never read this book whilst knowing how the series ended. There are a lot of hints about the final revelations, which demonstrate that she must have known at least some of where the books were going to end up. She can't have just 'got lucky.' I didn't take note of what they were, but I remember Voldemort soliloquizing about the methods he used to preserve his life and Harry noticing Dumbledore's victorious smile when he hears about the blood transfer. It made me feel smug that I knew what was coming, happy that my respect for the books was confirmed and sad that I already know everything, all at the same time.

These books make you feel things that few other series can. Say what you like about J.K. Rowling (I've probably said most of it myself already), but the Harry Potter books are amazing and I will never regret staying up until 2am to finish one of them.

It's a stupid time in the morning, so excuse the blabbering. What books made you lose sleep?       

4 comments:

  1. I am soooo overdue for a re-read of the Harry Potter books!

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  2. I must have been in sixth form when Order of the Phoenix came out and I have fond memories of poring over Goblet of Fire looking for details that might prove significant for the later books. Dumbledore's look of triumph was something that we speculated a lot about, and yet I don't think we came close. It's great coming back to a series you last read when it was still in progress (or even any reread, I suppose) with an understanding of the bigger picture and picking up on all the signs you might have missed first time round.

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  3. Well, now I want to reread and rewatch and generally relive ALL THE HARRY POTTER, because maaaan this is the loveliest post! One of the things I loved about rereading the first couple of books last year was realizing how much foreshadowing and little details are in there that all feed into making the last couple of books so therapy-worthy, but I think maybe I'm ready to go there now. It's been waaaaay too long, just because I'm scared of being destroyed by Deathly Hallows again. COME ON ELLIE. KID'S BOOK. GET A GRIP.

    "It made me feel smug that I knew what was coming, happy that my respect for the books was confirmed and sad that I already know everything, all at the same time." Love. This post, Hanna... love... happiness... nostalgia... it's wonderful. TWO NICE POSTS IN A WEEK, WHAT IS HAPPENING?! :P

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  4. I have to re-read Harry Potter now because of this post! I'm getting all the nostalgic feelings and remembering how excited I was for everything HP back when I was younger. :D Yay for books that are so amazing that they keep you from sleeping! :P

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