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Reread: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling

September 14, 2010

This summer, I’ve decided to finally reread the Harry Potter series. I’ve reread most of the books a few times, but this will be my first time reading the whole series, beginning to end, since the 7th book came out. After each book I’ll to do a quick post highlighting things that stood out to me in that reread. It’ll be my own little Harry Potter reading challenge :) Note: There will most definitely be series-wide spoilers in these posts.

Coming in to this reread project, Deathly Hallows was the only book in the series that I had only read once. I hadn’t realized just how much of this book I had forgotten. I knew how it ended and remembered two of the deaths. I vaguely recalled something about wandering around in the forest and lots of fighting at Hogwarts, but most of the details had not stuck around in my brain after that first hazy release day read. It almost felt like a first read, which was, well, wonderful.

Of all the things I was surprised not to have remembered, the identity of the Hog’s Head barman ranks quite high. How could I have forgotten?? Rowling so sneakily gave a hint of his identity in Order of the Phoenix, at which point in my reread over the summer I remember thinking ‘Hm, there’s something important there’. But then Rowling promptly moved on to other things and I forgot all about it.

The barman sidled towards them out of a back room. He was a grumpy-looking old man with a great deal of long grey hair and beard. He was tall and thin and looked vaguely familiar to Harry. (p. 300)

I’m sure there was another reference in one of the other books (or maybe it was also that one?) but I can’t remember where it was. Again, I’m amazed at Rowling’s forethough and that she obviously had an overall plan for the series very early on. I think I need to keep a list of things to keep an eye out for next time I go through the books.

Although, it may be quite a while before I go through them again. I really didn’t expect to get so emotionally involved in the story and the wizarding world this time. I mean, I had gone through it already, I knew the gist of what happened and I knew how it all ended. But finishing Deathly Hallows was just as sad as finishing it the first time. And probably amplified by reading the entire series over just a few short months.

You know I love finding songs that match whatever I’m reading, and I never bring up the Soundtrack Song in my reviews. But I’m making an exception here. If you’re reading Deathly Hallows now or plan on reading it soon, please please please listen to this song when you get to chapter 34 “The Forest Again”. It was so perfectly written for that scene.

Rereading this series, especially Deathly Hallows, made me think a lot about movie adaptations and how they influence rereads of favourite books. Once I see a movie adaptation, I’ll never again picture scenes in the book the way I first did, they’ll be coloured and filled in by the movie. Last time I read Half-Blood Prince was just before the movie came out, so this time around my mind was inadvertently filled with images from the movie. I’m so glad I decided to reread Deathly Hallows before the last two movies came out, before too many movie images could be burned into my mind and I could still imagine Deathly Hallows as only I could imagine it.

Of course, I will still be seeing the movies as soon as they’re released. Even though I’ve finished reading the series again, I’m not quite ready to say goodbye the Ron, Harry, Hermione, and their wizarding world. The release of the final movie will definitely mark the end of an era.

I’m not done yet! Because I can’t quite let go, I decided to get myself sorted. I’ve done this quiz twice and both times the Sorting Hat decided the same thing. I’m proud to be a Hufflepuff :)

I was Sorted!

Today’s questions: Will you see the last two Harry Potter movies? What Hogwart’s House do you belong to?

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prizoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Soundtrack Saturday

10 Comments leave one →
  1. September 14, 2010 9:35 pm

    I absolutely LOVE everything Harry. The books, the movies, and hopefully we can get to the Harry Potter world in Florida in the next year or two. I’ve never re-read the series, but plan on doing it over the winter.


  2. September 14, 2010 11:44 pm

    I’m getting ready to reread these next month. I reread the first one a while back and was shocked at how much I had forgotten and how much of the movie I was picturing. I’ve also only read the last book once and am really looking forward to rereading it. I barely remember any of it!

    I’ll definitely be going to the movies (midnight showing… dressed up)! I’m a Gryffindor :)

    I’m planning an HP giveaway on my blog next month and would love for you to guest post if you think you’d have time!

  3. September 15, 2010 6:29 am

    My vague recollection is that there’s some reference to goats somewhere, which is how I figured out it was Aberforth. Dumbledore makes reference in the fourth book to Aberforth practicing improper charms on a goat, and then sometime after that the Hog’s Head is described as smelling of goat, or Harry sees a goat there–I don’t remember. But yeah, JK Rowling is a past master of dropping hints and then paying them off like crazy later on.

    I’m still so sad that Harry Potter is over! Whenever I go to bookstores and see the seventh book there, I have a moment of practically hyperventilating like OMG THE LAST ONE IS OUT, like I’ve never seen it before, and then I remember I read it already. Three years ago. :(

  4. elliek permalink
    September 15, 2010 6:32 am

    I’m reading Hallows to my husband right now…I was pretty much having to force him to listen to it…until last night – we read the chapter when they are at Malfoy Manor and at the end he had tears in his eyes and asked me to read another chapter!

  5. September 15, 2010 10:20 am

    I’m a fast reader, I usually like to re-read the entire book series before a new movie comes out. I find that I may notice more from the movie than others.

  6. September 15, 2010 1:24 pm

    I’m glad you enjoyed your reread. I’m curious how the 7th book will be for me the third time around shortly.

    It’s funny you mention the soundtrack. When I was reading the 5th book, I was listening to AFI’s Sing the Sorrow album and the Leaving Song (Part 1) always makes me think of Harry Potter. For some reason it just fits for me. :)

  7. September 15, 2010 3:04 pm

    I love the HP series! I’m a Hufflepuff too.!

  8. September 15, 2010 4:06 pm

    Lisa – I want to go to Harry Potter World so bad. Still trying to convince hubby that I’m serious about making that trek. Yes, you should definitely reread the series this winter. I first read them during Christmas break and have always considered them winter comfort reads.

    Tara SG – I’m looking forward to seeing what you discover in your rereads! A dress-up midnight showing of DH sounds like so much fun. I need to look into doing that….

    Jenny – Oh! Smelling of goat! I remember reading that and thinking it was weird. Hmmm, I wonder where that was. I kind of feel that the series isn’t officially over yet because the last two movies still haven’t been released. Once those come out, oh my, the sadness that will overcome me.

    elliek – Aw! That reminds me of my husband – I’ve been bugging him to read the books for 4 years, and this past summer he broke down and read the first one. The morning after he started, I woke up and found him reading in the dark :)

    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – I used to do that, but unfortunately I didn’t always have the time.

    Michelle – I picked an AFI song for Goblet of Fire, Miseria Cantare – The Beginning for the Death Eaters’ chant. I can imagine that album also fitting with Order of the Phoenix :)

    Jessi E. – Yay Hufflepuff!

  9. September 15, 2010 7:01 pm

    I want to read this entire series again, but I’m sad to think of the movies coming to an end!!

  10. September 16, 2010 2:12 am

    I took the quiz and was a Ravenclaw :) Harry Potter is always great for re-reading!

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