Once again, I’m warning that since Harry Potter (both the books and movies) are so widely known and popular, I’m not going to be particularly careful about spoilers here…
THIS is where the Harry Potter story really starts to pick up. Emotions run higher, making all of the characters seem even more life-like. Hermione and Ron in particular seem much more like teenagers rather than children. Hermione especially really shines here – not only how hard-working and studious she is, but also how passionate she can be.
The plot has taken a much more mature and interesting tone – murderer Sirius Black has escaped from Azkaban and is rumored to be coming for Harry. The suspense is high, as you eventually learn that Sirius is actually Harry’s godfather, but he’s rumored to have betrayed the Potters to Voldemort the night of his death. Also, the adults are as equally important characters as Harry, Ron, and Hermione in this – Professor Lupin plays a major role, Sirius of course, and even Snape. We learn what Dementors are (definitely adding a darker feeling to the book).
By the end of the novel, after a bit of a time-traveling twist you learn the truth about the night the Potters died, and who REALLY betrayed them. Harry is happy to know that he is not completely without family in his life. And though Voldemort doesn’t really make an appearance in this book, it ends with the impression that he’ll be showing up again real soon. The events in this book are really what propels the rest of the Harry Potter story forward.
And of course, we get new glimpses of the magical world; Animagi, special maps, werewolves, Hogsmeade, etc. It’s amazing that Rowling always finds some new bit of magic to add to each book.
Can’t wait to re-read #4 now!
Sarah Says: 5 stars!