Harry Potter

Well, that’s over.

I fini­shed three thou­sands nine hun­dreds and for­ty-two pages. It took a while, but I’ve done it. And I know the ans­wers to a bunch of ques­tions, for example :

  • Is Snape an asshole ?
  • Is He who must not be named dead ?
  • Is Har­ry dead ?
  • But who is dead ?
  • Will Har­ry and Her­mione end up together ?
  • Who is Bathil­da ? (No, she’s not Leon’s friend after get­ting cold.)
  • Will Ron ever have an idea ?

You may read the end of this article (link below), but then, you take your res­pon­si­bi­li­ties : don’t com­plain if I tell you how it ends before you read it.
Still here ? Okay, if you’re not afraid of spoilers…

So, let’s start by ans­we­ring the ques­tion you all won­der, you bunch of maniacs : is the seventh and last opus as good as the pre­vious ones ?

Well… That’s a good ques­tion. Very good indeed.

It’s a bit dif­ferent from the six first ones, for Ms. Row­ling (hal­lo­wed be Thy name) is not trying to build a new sto­ry, but to end the run­ning one. So it’s much less about sur­prises and inven­tion, and much more about ans­wers. In the end, we could state that, after having read the first 3,300 pages twice, the last 600 are rather not sur­pri­sing. Near­ly eve­ry­thing comes up as expec­ted, or at least, as some expected.

Sna­pe’s truth, the R.A.B. iden­ti­ty (no, that’s no movie star­ring Matt Damon), the whole sto­ry about hor­cruxes, who will mar­ry who, who is the second Dum­ble­dore, well, that kind of stuff was alrea­dy sup­po­sed, par­tial­ly or total­ly gues­sed and dis­cus­sed about by many fans, and you may think that the­re’s in fact only one real­ly new thing : the death­ly hallows.

Meanw­hile, this book is pro­ba­bly the most enter­tai­ning in the whole series. It is not the book in which you get lost in side­ways sto­ries concer­ning a Raven­claw see­ker or Her­mione taking a bru­tal fan­cy over some elves’ sake. Here, what mat­ters is what gets to the final mee­ting, the last fight, the end of the war, well, you know, that stuff about nei­ther can live while the other sur­vives ?

The idea of the death­ly hal­lows joins some ideas heard here and there about «good hor­cruxes», but still, Joanne manages to slip a big sur­prise here : after all, let’s drop this idea and come back to the one we had before the big bear­ded died !

So, while it may look a bit disap­poin­ting if you like lear­ning about the wizar­ding world, it’s maybe even more brea­th­ta­king than the pre­vious ones. Sounds great, nope ?

Some may want to know who dies. Well. That’s the great inno­va­tion in this final opus : while we were pret­ty used to see one or two people die towards the end of the book (remem­ber Cedric, Sirius or Albus ?), we get the first one just very near the begin­ning, and that goes on with a pret­ty harsh rythm. I don’t know wether Joanne read the whole Aga­tha Chris­ties’ series before she wrote this one, but hey ! Except bet­ween pages 130 and 380, people just keep fal­ling down mer­ci­less­ly, the sad­dest pro­ba­bly being the last two lovable cha­rac­ters — I guess that’s the moment Joan­ne’s hus­band told her some­thing like «No, you didn’t do that ?!!!» — lea­ving a how­ling thing to be rai­sed by its lone grandma.

But final­ly, all ends up nice­ly with Bel­la­trix Les­trange trying some­thing very bad for her life expec­tan­cy and Neville Long­bot­tom sho­wing at last he was not far from being the cho­sen one.

The only thing that got a bit on my nerves is the epi­logue, which I felt was pret­ty bad­ly done and gave no infor­ma­tion about nothing, while it was sup­po­sed to make us know what hap­pe­ned to those who sur­vi­ved. Here, it’s just use­less and a bit irritating.

Ah, and since I know you won­der : yes, Har­ry dies. But that’s not that simple.