harry potter and the chamber of secrets ...the worst birthday

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harry potter and the chamber of secrets ...the worst birthday

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1pollysmith
Out 1, 2007, 7:59am

JKR has hinted that many hints of what was to come are contained in this book, try and spot them!

2pollysmith
Out 1, 2007, 11:42am

Okay lets post something! I know some of you are griping about not having time to read and post until tuesday ( something about homework?) but there must be questions?

3Kerian
Out 1, 2007, 11:54am

I have my CoS out and am reading. Sorry, Polly. :)

4littlegeek
Out 1, 2007, 12:19pm

I didn't get a chance to read it over yet, but I just want to say, I always hate the Dursley parts. When people say they tried to read HP and "just couldn't get into it" I assume they never made it to school.

And Dobby is annoying. (CoS is not my favourite.)

5foggidawn
Out 1, 2007, 12:24pm

Okay, so this is the discussion thread, huh? Well . . .

I have to admit that CoS is probably my least-favorite in the series -- I still like it, of course, just not as much as I like the others. But, having said that, in these chapters, CoS introduces one of my favorite characters (Dobby), and starts setting up the whole Harry/Ginny relationship, so I shouldn't complain!

I'm betting that Ginny's obvious crush on Harry is one of the "hints" referred to in post #1.

This read-through, the thing that struck me is the effect Harry had on the whole Weasley family. I mean, I bet they never suspected that Ron (who is the quintessential "middle child") would go to school and immediately become best friends with the most famous wizard of his time. (On the flip side, Draco obviously expected to do just that, and is kinda irked for the rest of the series because he didn't manage it!) So, here Harry is, visiting the Burrow . . . despite how "normal" they all acted, it must have been a little surreal!

The other, unrelated thing that I noticed: Borgin & Burkes must not have much of a turnover rate for their merchandise -- just about everything that Harry sees there shows up in later books, most of it in Half-Blood Prince or Deathly Hallows.

6foggidawn
Out 1, 2007, 12:28pm

LOL -- LG's post wasn't up when I started mine. Interesting that, though we both have the same opinion of the book as a whole, we have such different reactions to Dobby! I can see how he'd be annoying, though. (And, movie-related gripe, they got his voice all wrong in the CoS film.) About the Dursleys -- my Dad always said he felt like those parts were overdone. I mean, Harry had a rough time with them. We get it, already! Is that your reaction, LG, or is it something different?

7Marensr
Out 1, 2007, 12:37pm

#5 I agree foggi. CoS is my least favorite book in the series. I think it felt a little more contrived than the others.

I suppose the other forshadowing is the Horcrux but we aren't there yet so I'll stop.

The Dursely's always reminded me of Roald Dahl books with the unloved child who escapes the bad family in a magical way. I also think that kids see bad things that dramatically.

8foggidawn
Out 1, 2007, 12:47pm

#7 -- I agree that kids see bad things that dramatically. I'm always amused at the passionate way kids put things . . . until I remember how things felt when I was their age. (I really sympathize with Ginny in this book. I had a crush on a greasy little git at the age of 11, and everyone in my class found out. I thought. the world. was going. to END. I still squirm a bit, looking back on it.) But I also think that's one of the reasons a lot of adults tend to discount the Dursley parts of the book -- they seem so much larger than life. Good point!

9littlegeek
Out 1, 2007, 12:48pm

First of all, foggi, there's foreshadowing about Ginny/Harry back in PS/SS when she's always excited to see him.

After book 1, the Dursley parts slow it all down. Nothing that happens there is really important to the plot, except in book 5. The rest of the time it's just "comic relief" but just not very funny.

And Dobby, yuck, obsequiousness bugs me, and not just because I can't spell it.

10foggidawn
Editado: Out 1, 2007, 12:56pm

#9 -- Yeah, but it rachets up several notches. I mean, Ginny being interested to see him in the first book was just because he was famous. I don't think there was anything "romantic" about it at that point. But after hearing Ron's stories . . . well, I never had an older brother, but I've known enough people with crushes on their older brothers' best friends to figure that's not exactly an unusual thing, even when the best friend isn't famous. The combination of the two factors (Ron's best friend and most famous wizard of his age) would be almost irresistible, I think.

11pollysmith
Out 1, 2007, 1:14pm

I disagree! I liked this book! I find the Dursleys terrifically funny and enjoy reading their comical efforts to stamp the magic out of harry by treating him worse then a dog they didn't like. It correlates with the real world and the way some people will go to any lengths to destroy something they don't understand!

12littlegeek
Out 1, 2007, 1:50pm

well, polly, it's a good thing HP has so many facets and can appeal to different tastes. You enjoy your Dursleys and I'll just skip over them.

13Marensr
Out 1, 2007, 2:11pm

I think the other think I love about the books as exemplified by the Dursleys is the way adults can get it wrong and you can be punished unjustly. What child hasn't been wrongly punished by a parent or teacher- I wish I had someone to rescue me from those situations in a flying ford anglia.

14pollysmith
Out 1, 2007, 2:19pm

yes indeed Mar! I still remember a couple unjust punishments I recieved as a child

15paulacs
Out 1, 2007, 2:24pm

CoS is also my least favorite too, but I've never been able to put my finger on why...

The thing, though, about Harry's relationship with the Weasley's is that even though Harry is famous, I think a great deal of the excitment for Arthur and Molly must be to see the long-lost only child of the friends they fought the Death Eaters alongside. And for that reason, also, it seems natural that they would take him under their wing -- besides that Harry is just so likeable and Molly is just so maternal...

16gpwts
Out 1, 2007, 7:25pm

I love the burrow, I want to live at the burrow, I love the burrow in the movie. I feel like they really got that right

and not to join the club but CoS is my least favorite too, but I do love crazy dobby. One of my fav quotes in the whole series comes up a little later

(btw I still haven't read the book, I'm just running by memory. If we make it to 5-7 I might join in. But Weasley is still hard for me to read)

17megkrahl
Out 1, 2007, 10:19pm

You don't have to love the Dursley's, or think that part of the book is all that great, as long as you understand it is one of those cause and effect moments. The Weasley's never would have stolen the car and brought him back to the burrow if they were nice to him, or even if they just ignored him. It has to be something more.

On another note, I love how Ron is embarrased about his house until he realizes how much Harry loves it there. Then it is almost as if Harry has always been there.

18megkrahl
Out 2, 2007, 1:16pm

I loved how Mrs.Weasley just immediately takes him in and treats him as just another son.

19pollysmith
Out 2, 2007, 4:40pm

yes just like me! If you're here, you're family, now clean up your room!

20paulacs
Out 3, 2007, 11:16am

:), me too! The burrow moments are nice moments of security and coziness.

21Marensr
Out 3, 2007, 11:24am

Doesn't everyone want to live in the burrow? I know I do.

22Marensr
Out 3, 2007, 11:29am

Actually, I was just thinking about Harry and how different/impossible his experience would have been without the Weasleys. They give him the closest sense of a proper family and an ideal to hope for, as well as his first real Christmas presents. They actually become a buffer of normalcy for him throughout the series.

23pollysmith
Out 3, 2007, 5:51pm

i agree, without the weasleys harry might well have become bitter and angry toward the world.

I do wonder what happened to petunia and lily's parents? They must have died quite young?

24foggidawn
Out 3, 2007, 8:35pm

Another question we can hope she answers someday in the encyclopedia!

25littlegeek
Out 7, 2007, 12:10pm

I finally just went out and bought another copy of CoS so here's a few more notes from the beginning chapters:

Random stuff that appears later: the ghoul in the Weasley's attic, the cabinet & the locket in Flourish & Blotts.

I love the Weasley's house too. Where was the "where everyone is" thingy? I thought it was in this book. Love: "Tuck in your shirt, scruffy!"

I have always thought of CoS as my least favourite and now I can't remember why. It's pretty good, actually. Well done plot--lots of clues but I didn't figure it out the first time. (about Ginny, I mean.)

26foggidawn
Out 7, 2007, 5:16pm

And everyone remember to read chapters 5-8 -- discussion starts tomorrow!

27biblioholic29
Editado: Abr 1, 2008, 8:47am

"In fact he was as not normal as a boy could be."

Really? I don't think so. Granted being a wizard who's parents were killed be the worst dark wizard ever to have lived while you survived sending said dark wizard into exile and spending your teen years being stalked by same said wizard is not normal. However, I think he could be more not normal. He could have like webbed feet or hooves or something. I'm sure there a lots more ways he could be not normal. I'm just saying....

;)

ETA: guess what book I started this morning?!