Title: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Author: J. K. Rowling
Review: You’ve probably heard of this book already, and if you haven’t read it yet where the hell have you been. I first read Harry Potter as a child of about 6 – I was a very advanced reader but never re-read it through my teen years so these review will be me reading this series as an adult.
For those of you that don’t know this is a story about Harry and his two new friends settling down for their first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. He’s shy and self-doubting and puts up with a lot from his awful aunt Petunia and uncle Vernon and fat cousin Dudley. Poor Harry lost his parents, supposedly in a car crash, when he was a baby and that was when he received the strange lightning-shaped scar across his forehead. Ever since then he has slept in the cupboard under the stairs at the Dursleys’ perfectly normal house in Privet Drive and the best thing he has to look forward to is starting at the local secondary school next term – well away from Dudley who will be going to his father’s old, expensive school, Smeltings.
But, other people know a lot more about Harry than Harry does himself. That lightning-shaped scar is a matter of enormous interest and Harry is about to discover that he has a lot of friends, and enemies, in a rather different kind of world from the one he was brought up in.
There are characters in this book that will remind us of all the people we have met. Everybody knows or knew a spoilt, overweight boy like Dudley or a bossy and interfering (yet kind-hearted) girl like Hermione. A large number of the younger readers will also be able to easily identify with Harry, especially with his initial feelings of isolation and not belonging, and then through to his excitement at finally leaving that life behind in favour of one where he belongs and will be happy.
When Harry begins his first term at Hogwarts (a wizarding school) he is not alone in being overawed:
‘Yeh’ll get yer firs’ sight of Hogwarts in a sec,’ Hagrid called over his shoulder, ‘jus’ round this bend here.’
There was a loud ‘Oooooh!”
The narrow path had opened suddenly on to the edge of a great black lake. Perched atop a high mountain on the other side, its windows sparkling in the starry sky, was a vast castle with many turrets and towers.
Hogwarts is a truly magical place, not only in the most obvious way but also in all the detail that the author has gone to describe it so vibrantly. It is the place that everybody wishes they could of gone to when they where eleven. And there many adventures befall the trio (Harry, Ron and Hermione) and the stone in the book’s title is key to all that happens and I find this is the case with more than one of the books. The story builds towards and exciting conclusion that has the ultimate feel-good factor.
J.K. Rowling should be commended for getting so many people reading and excited by books. The biggest surprise must be the effect that this novel had on the adult population, both male and female – at the time the books were published many a commuting train was spotted with Harry Potter books providing world-weary workers with a wonderful sense of escapism. This book is highly recommended to anybody between the ages of 8 and 80.
Overall, re-reading this book as an adult was a very different experience, when you read this as a child much like the first years you are filled with a sense of awe and wonder whereas to an adult it feels more nostalgic and you are able to pick up of the fainter and sometime darker themes running through the book allowing us to get a more rounded and wholesome feel of the book.
We are also spotlight Tiffany for this book (mine will be the half blood prince).
Stephanie: If you could pick any sweet from the cart on the train, what would it be and why?
I would choose the chocolate frogs as my favorite sweet is chocolate and i like the feeling of being able to collect the cards which each sweet you have.
Sammi: Who is your favorite bad guy in the book and why?
I would have to choose Professor Snape as even though he appears evil at the beginning he is only trying to help harry at times and theres meaning to why hes like he is not like the others.
Jasmine: Did you enjoy the book more rereading it or reading it for the first time and why?
I enjoyed the book rereading it more as its like meeting up with an old friend and jumping into their world all other again and i discover things that i has missed or forgotten everytime i venture into it agian. This time as i said i was reading the illustrated version so it also felt like i was reading it for the first time again as it had the pictures to enjoy aswell.
Jodie: Who is your favorite character and why?
Hermione is my favorite character as shes reminds me of myself alot as we both have very busy and messy hair which is hard to tame and we both are bookworms who like to try their best at school and stay out of trouble if they can. The fact that she also has a select few friends is very similar to myself aswell. This is why shes my favorite character as i connect to her very easily.
Megan: If you could take one First Year course at Hogwarts, what would you pick? (Defense Against the Dark Arts, Transfiguration, Charms, Potions, Herbology, History of Magic, or Astronomy?)
I would probably either take charms as I find spell work fasinating or Astronomy to be able to learn the different planets and moon cycles ect.
You can also find their reviews here:
Buy it here: