Mudcat Café message #1529283 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #82878   Message #1529283
Posted By: Peter T.
27-Jul-05 - 11:27 AM
Thread Name: BS: Harry Potter: Book 6 (Half-Blood Prince)
Subject: RE: BS: Harry Potter:
Well, I thought it was dreary. I started reading them when I was forced to by a small child, and liked the whole concept of the earlier ones (having been to a boy's private school with 4 houses, but no magic or girls, I could sort of relate), and rather admired the way the books got deeper, there were parts of 4 and 5 that were quite superior writing, and chunks of Dickensian writing (she had been reading Our Mutual Friend at one point). But this book shows the limits of her imagination, unfortunately.   For a start, there is far too much plot exposition for pages and pages and pages (the Dumbledore scenes in the past are really boring, the scenes in the country hovel have no life to them, they are a sort of cardboard Thomas Hardy, in part because she seems to be unable to do anything with landscape, which is strange).   The cave landscape, and the lake of the dead are something out of more cardboard, or movies. Something striking is how much her writing is now being influenced by the movies of her books -- the characters have turned into counters to be manipulated as plot devices. They are all patched in and out. The elves appear, go away again (now eerily turning into Gollum in their talk), Snape does his thing, Madame Divination is now exactly like Emma Thompson, and so on. The Quidditch game is of no real interest, patched in.   The really strange thing is that the Harry Potter-Ginny Weasley romance is handled so poorly -- the beginning works well, and then, oh well, they get together, and it is fine, and then Harry has to send her away because his enemies will strike him through her (this is a direct steal from Spider Man).   

It is very strange. It is as if the life has gone out of the whole enterprise completely, just as it was heading towards the end.   It is a pity, I was looking forward to seeing Rowling forge ahead. A couple of nice jokes were what made it bearable.


Peter T.