I can’t help but wonder if there’s actually any point to writing a review for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I mean, it’s the seventh Harry Potter book. If you’ve read the first six Harry Potter books, I think it’s a safe bet that you’re probably going to read the seventh one, no matter what anyone says about it.
And if you have not read the first six books, there is no way you could possibly understand anything that happens in the last one. Not to mention, nobody really wants to know anything about a Harry Potter book ahead of time, anyway.
That didn’t stop The New York Times’ leading book critic Michiko Kakutani from posting a rather revealing review two days before the July 21 release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Photographs of every single page were available on file-sharing websites as early as July 16, and I noticed plenty of mean-spirited, intentional spoilers sprinkled throughout Facebook like landmines, but I would have expected more from the Times.
While Kakutani just barely manages not to actually give away the ending of the book, she does describe the tone of the ending and pretty clearly implies whether it is happy or sad. She drops some other fairly major plot points, including an explanation of what the “deathly hallows” actually are, a revelation that does not come until more than halfway through the novel.
For anyone who has been following the epic Harry Potter series, I’m guessing you’re done with book seven by now, but if not, trust me, it’s good, and you will be satisfied with the ending.
For anyone who hasn’t, I can tell you that it would be worth it to start. Now that all seven books are written and published, you can buy a box set and read it all at once. I’m guessing it would be sort of like watching the first three seasons of Lost on DVD, which is to say, amazing and considerably less frustrating. I am a recently graduated English major and a total literature snob — my favorite authors are James Joyce and D.H. Lawrence — and seriously, J.K. Rowling is a very talented writer who knows how to captivate and please her readers. I swear.
If you haven’t picked up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by now, do it. I wholeheartedly recommend the series as a whole. Just make sure to set aside a week or so, because you aren’t going to be able to stop until you plow through all seven books.