Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Book Review: The Order of Harry Potter by Colin Manlove

ISBN: 1936294052
ASIN:  B008MZR684
Published: November 2nd, 2010
Publisher: Winged Lion Press
Read from December 19th to 20th, 2012
Synopsis from Goodreads:
What makes the Harry Potter books so readable? Are they as Christian as is often said? Is Hogwarts real, or did Harry Potter dream his whole story? These are some of the questions explored by Colin Manlove in this dazzling new study, which looks at the Hogwarts books in terms of their readability, their literary value and their many meanings. Here you will find chapters on how much they owe to Christian fantasy and to alchemy; on what, compared to Enid Blyton's 'Fives' books, makes them page-turners; on the consequences of their interest in magic and imagination; on their love of change; and on the ordering of each book and the whole series through recurrent motifs and ideas. With these approaches, rather than simply selecting those few parts of the texts that support a theory, Colin Manlove is able to talk about everything in the Harry Potter books, from the smallest common room conversation in Gryffindor to the greatest struggles with Voldemort.

I feel kind of bad about posting a somewhat negative review on Christmas, but I honestly skimmed the last part of this book because I just didn't really like it.  It wasn't bad per se, but I just didn't have any interest in it.  The author spent a lot of time just comparing Harry Potter to other books, and this would have been fine to a certain extent of course, but it seemed to be all he did.  He spent a lot of time describing the other books and then just going through and pointing out similarities between Harry Potter and those books.  It was usually to point out something about the Harry Potter books, but it usually seemed to just become a comparison, and I honestly had no interest in reading those.

The parts of the book that I actually read in detail had a few interesting points, but like I said, most of it was just comparisons it seemed.  I feel as if most of it was spent describing the books he was comparing to Harry Potter to reader in case they hadn't read them.  Maybe that would have changed if I'd stuck with the book, but I just got so bored with it that I couldn't.

I don't really think this is a bad book.  It just isn't really a book I find enjoyable to read.  I'm sure it's a book that many others would find enjoyable though.  It just depends on what you enjoy reading.

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