Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling

This is the third book in the series.  This review is free of spoilers!  However, to read my reviews of the other books, click below:

Harry is thirteen years old now.  But of course, his birthday isn't going as planned.  For one, he needs his Uncle Vernon to sign a paper that will let Harry go to the town near Hogwarts with his friends, and he doubts his uncle will allow him that happiness.  Plus, a dangerous criminal has just been reported as on the loose and immensely dangerous.  And, to make things worse, Uncle Vernon's sister, Aunt Marge, is coming to see them.  Marge has never exactly been friendly to Harry (in fact, she's been a complete jerk), but Harry promises to be a "good boy" as long as Vernon promises to sign his paper to let him go to town.  But after a terrible accident with Aunt Marge, Harry takes a chance and runs away - and is rescued and taken to Hogwarts.  Now, however, there is greater danger: the escaped convict, Sirius Black, is actually an evil wizard who has been locked up in Azkaban for twelve years.  He has managed to escape the prison, something no one has ever done, and now he is after Harry.  As the mystery of Black's whereabouts begins to unfold, Harry and his friends, Ron and Hermoine, realize there is more to Black than appears, and he may have a much closer connection to the Potters than Harry would have ever dreamed, not even in his nightmares.

My Thoughts -

I'm immensely proud of Harry!  He has three years at Hogwarts behind him and has lived through all of them (if only barely).  He has become like a friend, especially through this third book in the series, which I found to be better than the last two.  Everything about this book was awesome.  But not only the story and characters; I felt like I could picture everything a whole lot better, like putting my glasses on in the morning.  Now is the time when I've become attached to the characters, the world, the underlying story.  I'm so excited to soon get to the next book!

Character notes -

I now officially love Harry.  I always liked him, but he really grew up in this book.  Even still, though, my favorite characters (from the whole series so far) are Fred and George Weasley.  They make me laugh soooo hard and I can never get enough of their mischief and wit!

Professor Lupin was also a favorite...  He fascinated me from the first time they see him, sleeping in the train.  I also wasn't sure if he was good or bad the whole time...hard to explain to someone who hasn't read these books yet, but I'm sure most of you HP fans out there kind of have an idea of what I mean.

One thing about the characters that really really stood out to me:  the sacrifice between friends.  When Ron gets hurt, and the three friends are caught in a life-or-death situation, they all three offer their lives instead of the others'.  That made me grin - you know friends really love each other (really really really love each other) when they're willing to give their lives for each other.

Story notes -

This story was much more intense and enthralling than the last two (and I believe they get even more intense and enthralling, from what I've heard)!  The mystery involving Sirius Black, the practices/games of Quidditch, the revealed information about Harry's parents and Voldemort, the new classes introduced, and the awesome twists at the end - it all made me love the series ten times more than I had before.

One word or phrase to sum it up (final thoughts) -
There were two words running through my mind the whole time I read this book : absolutely fascinating.  And now that it's over, the three words going through my mind are:  next book please!  If you've waited a long time to read these books (like I have), don't wait now.  Get them and read them!

Read my other reviews here.


  1. "and I believe they get even more intense and enthralling, from what I've heard"

    Yes! Oh my gosh yes! I only started reading the books when the sixth book came out, but I always thought it must have been wonderful to read them as they came out. That way as the reader grew up, so did the books. Each book gets progressively more mature in the depth, scope, and problems the characters face. The way she had the characters grow is so amazing and realistic. This series is like a gift to the world that I'm continually amazed with and thankful for. I'm so glad you're enjoying them!

  2. :D I'm super duper excited!! I have some important library reads to get through (including "A Curse as Dark as Gold") but I'm so excited to get to #4! Thanks for all your comments, Small, it makes my day!

  3. Great review, loved reading your thoughts about Harry. Also very much enjoyed your interview with Misha.

  4. "...I felt like I could picture everything a whole lot better, like putting my glasses on in the morning."

    This made me smile from ear to ear like such a dork.
    Your reviews are the best, dear! Each one I read leaves me wishing I could reach into the computer screen and grab the book.
    Wow, I am a dork.

  5. Aaawww thanks Laura! :) I'm a dork, too...don't worry... :)

    And Jan - thanks so much! I enjoyed filling out the interview, such fun questions! :)