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HP V opine

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  • Edward Carmien
    ... Finished it myself just yesterday morning. 870 pages. Did have some slow parts (anyone else notice that the more a writer gets paid the less editing they
    Message 1 of 5 , Jun 25, 2003
      > Message: 5
      > Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2003 10:49:57 EDT
      > From: Stolzi@...
      > Subject: A Harry Potter Sunburn
      >
      > http://www.comics.com/comics/bignate/archive/bignate-20030625.html
      >
      > Finished HPV myself last night. Much too long, dull, at least one scene
      > apparently crafted while looking over one's shoulder to the movie (not that I
      > think the movies will get to Vol 5), and the character who dies will be missed
      > greatly - by me at least.
      >
      > Diamond Proudbrook gives it two thumbs down.

      Finished it myself just yesterday morning. 870 pages. Did have some slow
      parts (anyone else notice that the more a writer gets paid the less editing
      they receive?), but I thought it was a better novel than IV.

      I give it a B. Rowling continues to be spot on with age-appropriate
      character development; language and attitude are very 15 years old like
      (tweaked to the young side--I'm sure most 15 year olds feel themselves to be
      more mature than the central characters in HP, and many of them are probably
      right). Good homage to a Very British Boarding School theme, another wrinkle
      of which is presented here (can't say more without spoiling). I would hope
      for but do not expect to see Rowling break a significant element of the
      formula in a future novel.

      Many scenes struck me as having a film in mind, and since HP will be making
      money for decades to come, I'm sure there will eventually be a film (or some
      kind of screen adaptation--IV and V are so long I'd think a mini-series
      would work better than a film).

      As with much series fiction, many unsatisfying elements relate to the author
      "saving" key resolutions for later. So we get the set-up in V and have to
      wait for VI for the obvious resolution (OR, as per the general rule of
      series fiction, certain characters and character relationships must remain
      static, which means there will never be the "obvious resolution." See *
      below for spoiler type comment). I feel the same way about Matrix
      Reloaded--too much of the narrative was taken out of the film and put into
      alternate formats, such as the Animatrix (curious to know who that kid is
      that Neo meets in Zion? Its in the Animatrix), the computer game, and of
      course the coming-out-later-this-year end of the Matrix trilogy. Rowling
      seems to be keeping her younger audience in mind as well, which is another
      kind of strait jacket. Her concept spans two different age brackets (if not
      three), which means as ole' Harry gets older she's writing about more
      young-adult themes but must keep an eye on the children's market sensibility
      and expectations.

      Just my two cents

      ejc
      --
      Edward Carmien, Ph.D.
      Assistant Professor of English
      Westminster Choir College of Rider University
      101 Walnut Lane
      Princeton, NJ 08540-3899
      V: 609-921-7100, ext. 8235
      F: 609-921-8829
      ecarmien@...
      enigma.rider.edu/~ecarmien






      * SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
      Take Harry's interaction with Snape in HPV for example. He learns why Snape
      hated James Potter. Harry learns his dear old Dad (at least in the context
      of Snape's recollection: who knows how accurate this memory is?) was an
      arrogant prick, at least before he "grew up" toward the end of his Hogwarts
      career. Everything Harry learns screams out for at least an attempt at
      reconciliation, but Harry doesn't even appear to consider such a thing and
      then reject it in a fit of teen angst. Why not? Snape has to remain an
      antagonistic figure to Harry, OR Rowling is saving the Snape/Potter
      reconciliation (or at least "mutual understanding") for a later story, in
      which it will play the part of hinge in some crucial or at least
      semi-crucial role in the plot.

      Oh, and in other news, can we get this kid a new eyeglasses prescription?
      Rowling's foreshadowing of the news Harry needs new glasses is so thick I
      thought she'd be naming HP VI "Harry Potter and his New Glasses." :)
    • David S. Bratman
      ... Thank you; I think any criticism of V s length and slowness (e.g. Stolzi s Much too long, dull ) isn t parsable by people who haven t read the book,
      Message 2 of 5 , Jun 25, 2003
        At 10:14 AM 6/25/2003 , Edward Carmien wrote:

        >Finished it myself just yesterday morning. 870 pages. Did have some slow
        >parts (anyone else notice that the more a writer gets paid the less editing
        >they receive?), but I thought it was a better novel than IV.

        Thank you; I think any criticism of V's length and slowness (e.g. Stolzi's
        "Much too long, dull") isn't parsable by people who haven't read the book,
        unless the reviewer compares it to his or her reaction to IV, which was
        also much longer than any of its predecessors, and was also called slow by
        some.

        I liked IV, despite some glitches (like Voldemort, who's an arrogant
        idiot). II and III moved too fast for me. And I was also incredibly
        zippy, but at least it was about introducing the reader to the world, which
        gave the zippiness a point. II and III were about nothing but the plot,
        and seemed less good to me - though still enjoyable - for that reason. IV
        gave the world room to breathe.

        On the basis of comments I've seen so far, I'm expecting to like V. But we
        shall see, of course. (And is that a sufficiently intelligible comment
        about a book I haven't read?)

        - David Bratman
      • SusanPal@aol.com
        In a message dated 6/25/2003 10:54:05 AM Pacific Standard Time, ... Ha! Touche! Yep, we shall see works beautifully. Susan [Non-text portions of this
        Message 3 of 5 , Jun 25, 2003
          In a message dated 6/25/2003 10:54:05 AM Pacific Standard Time,
          dbratman@... writes:

          > On the basis of comments I've seen so far, I'm expecting to like V. But we
          > shall see, of course. (And is that a sufficiently intelligible comment
          > about a book I haven't read?)
          >

          Ha! Touche! Yep, "we shall see" works beautifully. <g>

          Susan


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Ginger L. Hysell
          I read HPV the night it came out. I stood in a line of 200 people at midnight to get it, and truly enjoyed watching kids and families get excited over reading
          Message 4 of 5 , Jun 26, 2003
            I read HPV the night it came out. I stood in a line of 200 people at
            midnight to get it, and truly enjoyed watching kids and families get
            excited over reading a book together.
            I want to see what opinions other have as they read it, however. I
            disagree that it's "age appropriate." I teach 12 year olds, most of whom
            think Harry Potter is below them. They come to my English class with the
            notion that since their younger siblings are reading the Harry Potter books
            it's kid's stuff. Does anyone know the age group Rowlings says she's
            writing for? My husband things it's turning more to adult readers. While
            3rd and 4th graders are the ones reading Harry Potter like there is no
            tomorrow, I have to agree with him when it comes to content and vocabulary.
            There was a notable lack of teens at the Harry Potter opening bash. Most
            people were either eight or nine, a parent, or an adult on their own to
            pick it up at midnight. I'd like to ask Rowling what she gains in her book
            by "effing" and the real social issues of kids cutting themselves that come
            up.
            Having said that, I think this is her best book yet. She ties up lots
            of loose ends and develops some characters who were previously flat. It's
            just not a "kids" story anymore.
            I'd be curious what others think of the "age appropriateness" issue
            though. I'll certainly encourage my students to read it if they have any
            interest in the books at all, but I'm curious about who Rowlings is really
            writing for.

            -Ginger

            --On Wednesday, June 25, 2003, 1:14 PM -0400 Edward Carmien
            <ecarmien@...> wrote:

            >> Message: 5
            >> Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2003 10:49:57 EDT
            >> From: Stolzi@...
            >> Subject: A Harry Potter Sunburn
            >>
            >> http://www.comics.com/comics/bignate/archive/bignate-20030625.html
            >>
            >> Finished HPV myself last night. Much too long, dull, at least one scene
            >> apparently crafted while looking over one's shoulder to the movie (not
            >> that I think the movies will get to Vol 5), and the character who dies
            >> will be missed greatly - by me at least.
            >>
            >> Diamond Proudbrook gives it two thumbs down.
            >
            > Finished it myself just yesterday morning. 870 pages. Did have some slow
            > parts (anyone else notice that the more a writer gets paid the less
            > editing they receive?), but I thought it was a better novel than IV.
            >
            > I give it a B. Rowling continues to be spot on with age-appropriate
            > character development; language and attitude are very 15 years old like
            > (tweaked to the young side--I'm sure most 15 year olds feel themselves to
            > be more mature than the central characters in HP, and many of them are
            > probably right). Good homage to a Very British Boarding School theme,
            > another wrinkle of which is presented here (can't say more without
            > spoiling). I would hope for but do not expect to see Rowling break a
            > significant element of the formula in a future novel.
            >
            > Many scenes struck me as having a film in mind, and since HP will be
            > making money for decades to come, I'm sure there will eventually be a
            > film (or some kind of screen adaptation--IV and V are so long I'd think a
            > mini-series would work better than a film).
            >
            > As with much series fiction, many unsatisfying elements relate to the
            > author "saving" key resolutions for later. So we get the set-up in V and
            > have to wait for VI for the obvious resolution (OR, as per the general
            > rule of series fiction, certain characters and character relationships
            > must remain static, which means there will never be the "obvious
            > resolution." See * below for spoiler type comment). I feel the same way
            > about Matrix Reloaded--too much of the narrative was taken out of the
            > film and put into alternate formats, such as the Animatrix (curious to
            > know who that kid is that Neo meets in Zion? Its in the Animatrix), the
            > computer game, and of course the coming-out-later-this-year end of the
            > Matrix trilogy. Rowling seems to be keeping her younger audience in mind
            > as well, which is another kind of strait jacket. Her concept spans two
            > different age brackets (if not three), which means as ole' Harry gets
            > older she's writing about more young-adult themes but must keep an eye on
            > the children's market sensibility and expectations.
            >
            > Just my two cents
            >
            > ejc
            > --
            > Edward Carmien, Ph.D.
            > Assistant Professor of English
            > Westminster Choir College of Rider University
            > 101 Walnut Lane
            > Princeton, NJ 08540-3899
            > V: 609-921-7100, ext. 8235
            > F: 609-921-8829
            > ecarmien@...
            > enigma.rider.edu/~ecarmien
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > * SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
            > Take Harry's interaction with Snape in HPV for example. He learns why
            > Snape hated James Potter. Harry learns his dear old Dad (at least in the
            > context of Snape's recollection: who knows how accurate this memory is?)
            > was an arrogant prick, at least before he "grew up" toward the end of his
            > Hogwarts career. Everything Harry learns screams out for at least an
            > attempt at reconciliation, but Harry doesn't even appear to consider such
            > a thing and then reject it in a fit of teen angst. Why not? Snape has to
            > remain an antagonistic figure to Harry, OR Rowling is saving the
            > Snape/Potter reconciliation (or at least "mutual understanding") for a
            > later story, in which it will play the part of hinge in some crucial or
            > at least semi-crucial role in the plot.
            >
            > Oh, and in other news, can we get this kid a new eyeglasses prescription?
            > Rowling's foreshadowing of the news Harry needs new glasses is so thick I
            > thought she'd be naming HP VI "Harry Potter and his New Glasses." :)
            >
            >
            >
            > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
            >
            > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
            >
            >



            _____________________________________
            Ginger L.Hysell
            Mill Creek Middle School
            Dexter MI
            7th grade English, Newspaper, and Drama
            Website: www.umich.edu/~glzabel

            "To be ignorant is not such a shame as to be unwilling to learn." - G. W.
            Hoss
          • Pauline J. Alama
            Please excuse my replying to very old messages, but I ve been avoiding anything with a Harry Potter subject line until I could finish the book. I agree with
            Message 5 of 5 , Jul 23 5:00 AM
              Please excuse my replying to very old messages, but I've been
              avoiding anything with a Harry Potter subject line until I could
              finish the book.

              I agree with Ginger Hysell in saying I think this was the best HP
              book yet: the main action gets started quickly; intriguing new
              characters are introduced and unexpected revelations shed new light
              on old characters (Neville, Sirius, Aunt Petunia, even the babysitter
              Mrs. Figg); the battle against evil takes on a new level as Hogwarts
              itself ceases to be a safe haven. The climactic encounter was moving,
              and Harry's final discussion with Dumbledore (IMO) brought out some
              satisfying material about the underlying philosophy or morality of
              Rowling's magical world. My husband (a high school teacher) and I
              (daughter of an elementary school teacher) particularly chuckled at
              the jab at the too-prevalent educational trend of "teaching to the
              test" implied by the depiction of Umbridge. I suppose the
              standardized testing monomaniacs must be almost as rabid in England
              as here -- othewise I would have expected Umbridge to be American.

              I disagree with those who felt that Harry's behavior seemed below 15-
              year-old level. I have extremely vivid (i.e., painful and
              embarrassing) memories of that age, and I kept interrupting the story
              to laugh ruefully, "Oh, yeah, I remember being that age. Noooo one
              understaaaands meeeeee!" :)

              I am a little puzzled with the comment that the vocabulary is on a
              third- or fourth-grade level. Already in Book IV I was impressed with
              some of the high-level vocabulary Rowling uses -- "serried" stuck out
              in my mind, not exactly a word you meet coming and going. I'm not
              sure I picked it up before grad school! I don't remember the examples
              from the current book, but I've had the general impression that there
              was plenty to send even high school students (or adults) to their
              dictionaries.

              Twelve-year-olds may think the books are too young for them because
              they were reading Harry Potter in fourth grade, but that doesn't mean
              they won't pick them up again in a few years. When I was in 7th
              grade, my dad's derisive comments convinced me to stop reading "fairy
              tales" (i.e. fantasy) for a couple of years because it was kid stuff.
              I latched onto romances and rock star bios instead -- a real step up,
              yeah, right :-} In a couple of years, the need to prove they're not
              kids any more may wear off, enabling them to enjoy Harry Potter
              again. It doesn't necessarily say anything about the books
              themselves, just the desperate need of junior high kids to prove
              themselves.

              All in all, I felt that the extra time Rowling spent on this volume
              really paid off. While I'd love to be able to dive right into the
              next one, on a deeper level I hope that she'll spend exactly as long
              as she needs to get it right.



              --- In mythsoc@yahoogroups.com, "Ginger L. Hysell" <glzabel@u...>
              wrote:
              > I read HPV the night it came out. I stood in a line of 200 people
              at
              > midnight to get it, and truly enjoyed watching kids and families get
              > excited over reading a book together.
              > I want to see what opinions other have as they read it,
              however. I
              > disagree that it's "age appropriate." I teach 12 year olds, most
              of whom
              > think Harry Potter is below them. They come to my English class
              with the
              > notion that since their younger siblings are reading the Harry
              Potter books
              > it's kid's stuff. Does anyone know the age group Rowlings says
              she's
              > writing for? My husband things it's turning more to adult
              readers. While
              > 3rd and 4th graders are the ones reading Harry Potter like there is
              no
              > tomorrow, I have to agree with him when it comes to content and
              vocabulary.
              > There was a notable lack of teens at the Harry Potter opening
              bash. Most
              > people were either eight or nine, a parent, or an adult on their
              own to
              > pick it up at midnight. I'd like to ask Rowling what she gains in
              her book
              > by "effing" and the real social issues of kids cutting themselves
              that come
              > up.
              > Having said that, I think this is her best book yet. She ties
              up lots
              > of loose ends and develops some characters who were previously
              flat. It's
              > just not a "kids" story anymore.
              > I'd be curious what others think of the "age appropriateness"
              issue
              > though. I'll certainly encourage my students to read it if they
              have any
              > interest in the books at all, but I'm curious about who Rowlings is
              really
              > writing for.
              >
              > -Ginger
              >
              > --On Wednesday, June 25, 2003, 1:14 PM -0400 Edward Carmien
              > <ecarmien@r...> wrote:
              >
              > >> Message: 5
              > >> Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2003 10:49:57 EDT
              > >> From: Stolzi@a...
              > >> Subject: A Harry Potter Sunburn
              > >>
              > >> http://www.comics.com/comics/bignate/archive/bignate-
              20030625.html
              > >>
              > >> Finished HPV myself last night. Much too long, dull, at least
              one scene
              > >> apparently crafted while looking over one's shoulder to the
              movie (not
              > >> that I think the movies will get to Vol 5), and the character
              who dies
              > >> will be missed greatly - by me at least.
              > >>
              > >> Diamond Proudbrook gives it two thumbs down.
              > >
              > > Finished it myself just yesterday morning. 870 pages. Did have
              some slow
              > > parts (anyone else notice that the more a writer gets paid the
              less
              > > editing they receive?), but I thought it was a better novel than
              IV.
              > >
              > > I give it a B. Rowling continues to be spot on with age-
              appropriate
              > > character development; language and attitude are very 15 years
              old like
              > > (tweaked to the young side--I'm sure most 15 year olds feel
              themselves to
              > > be more mature than the central characters in HP, and many of
              them are
              > > probably right). Good homage to a Very British Boarding School
              theme,
              > > another wrinkle of which is presented here (can't say more without
              > > spoiling). I would hope for but do not expect to see Rowling
              break a
              > > significant element of the formula in a future novel.
              > >
              > > Many scenes struck me as having a film in mind, and since HP will
              be
              > > making money for decades to come, I'm sure there will eventually
              be a
              > > film (or some kind of screen adaptation--IV and V are so long I'd
              think a
              > > mini-series would work better than a film).
              > >
              > > As with much series fiction, many unsatisfying elements relate to
              the
              > > author "saving" key resolutions for later. So we get the set-up
              in V and
              > > have to wait for VI for the obvious resolution (OR, as per the
              general
              > > rule of series fiction, certain characters and character
              relationships
              > > must remain static, which means there will never be the "obvious
              > > resolution." See * below for spoiler type comment). I feel the
              same way
              > > about Matrix Reloaded--too much of the narrative was taken out of
              the
              > > film and put into alternate formats, such as the Animatrix
              (curious to
              > > know who that kid is that Neo meets in Zion? Its in the
              Animatrix), the
              > > computer game, and of course the coming-out-later-this-year end
              of the
              > > Matrix trilogy. Rowling seems to be keeping her younger audience
              in mind
              > > as well, which is another kind of strait jacket. Her concept
              spans two
              > > different age brackets (if not three), which means as ole' Harry
              gets
              > > older she's writing about more young-adult themes but must keep
              an eye on
              > > the children's market sensibility and expectations.
              > >
              > > Just my two cents
              > >
              > > ejc
              > > --
              > > Edward Carmien, Ph.D.
              > > Assistant Professor of English
              > > Westminster Choir College of Rider University
              > > 101 Walnut Lane
              > > Princeton, NJ 08540-3899
              > > V: 609-921-7100, ext. 8235
              > > F: 609-921-8829
              > > ecarmien@r...
              > > enigma.rider.edu/~ecarmien
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > * SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER
              > > Take Harry's interaction with Snape in HPV for example. He learns
              why
              > > Snape hated James Potter. Harry learns his dear old Dad (at least
              in the
              > > context of Snape's recollection: who knows how accurate this
              memory is?)
              > > was an arrogant prick, at least before he "grew up" toward the
              end of his
              > > Hogwarts career. Everything Harry learns screams out for at least
              an
              > > attempt at reconciliation, but Harry doesn't even appear to
              consider such
              > > a thing and then reject it in a fit of teen angst. Why not? Snape
              has to
              > > remain an antagonistic figure to Harry, OR Rowling is saving the
              > > Snape/Potter reconciliation (or at least "mutual understanding")
              for a
              > > later story, in which it will play the part of hinge in some
              crucial or
              > > at least semi-crucial role in the plot.
              > >
              > > Oh, and in other news, can we get this kid a new eyeglasses
              prescription?
              > > Rowling's foreshadowing of the news Harry needs new glasses is so
              thick I
              > > thought she'd be naming HP VI "Harry Potter and his New
              Glasses." :)
              > >
              > >
              > >
              > > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
              > >
              > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
              http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
              > >
              > >
              >
              >
              >
              > _____________________________________
              > Ginger L.Hysell
              > Mill Creek Middle School
              > Dexter MI
              > 7th grade English, Newspaper, and Drama
              > Website: www.umich.edu/~glzabel
              >
              > "To be ignorant is not such a shame as to be unwilling to learn." -
              G. W.
              > Hoss
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