by J.K. Rowling
The one about Tommy Riddle’s past. After five books where we only got to know that Voldy is a mad, powerful racist, we finally get to know his road there better.
‘Half-Blood Prince‘ is really dark. It’s the darkest of them up to this point, and that’s no suprise: the war has come, even the Ministry has realised that Voldy’s back, so there’s some really tough stuff happening, although He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named isn’t even physically present in this book. Murders and kidnappings everywhere. At least until we get to Hogwarts – because once our heroes get there, they somehow realise they’re teenagers, which leads to a mixture of broken hearts, terrible relationships (Won-Won) and love potions.
Also, we see a lot of Dumbledore in this one who’s been absent for most of ‚Order of the Phoenix‘, and of course, a lot of Snape, but to me, the central figures in this book are Harry and Draco.
Draco has been somewhat absent in the books after ‚Prisoner of Azkaban‘. He was more of an irritating, stupid running gag who got beaten up all the time. Either he was turned into a ferret, or got jinxed in the Hogwarts Express on the way back – no more of that here. Now, Malfoy Junior is a major player in the game, with terrible consequences for anyone else.
Ginny steps right into the spotlight, of course. She’s grown strong in ‚Order‘, and here she’s just the best. Like, ever. By the way, did Ron really kiss Aunt Muriel? Anyway. What else is there? This is the Won-Won book. This is the one with You-No-Poo. This is the one with Harry high on liquid luck. And of course, it’s the one with the best sassy Harry in all of the series:
„You don’t have to call me ’sir‘, professor.“
I mean, come on. The whole class will have told their grandchildren about it. Neville Longbottom probably thinks of that moment every time he tries to create a Patronus. Somewhere, James Potter and Sirius went mad about it.
Whatever, five stars.
by J.K. Rowling