Book Reviews

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling

I purchased this book for my own reading pleasure, with no expectations of a review

 

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is the first book in Rowling’s phenomenal Harry Potter series. This is the British version of the book, with the stone Flamel created properly called the Philosopher’s Stone. Why the American release had to go and change it to the erroneous ‘Sorcerer’s Stone’s still irks me after all this time.

 

I just reread this book, falling in love with it all over again. The first several of these books helped me get through a tough few years fraught with surgery after surgery. Having such a world to step into made all the difference in my recovery.

 

Harry Potter is the Boy Who Lived, his survival heralding the fall of the Dark Wizard Voldemort. Harry, then orphaned, was sent to live with his aunt, uncle, and cousin. Forced to live in the cupboard under the stairs, Harry did his best to keep to himself. For eleven years, Harry suffered neglect and emotional abuse. Then comes the day when a letter from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry comes for him. For several days, Harry’s Uncle Vernon keeps the increasing number of letters from Harry.

 

This is to no avail, as it means Hagrid, the gamekeeper at Hogwarts, comes to personally deliver the letter. Harry is stunned to learn he is a wizard, as his parents were. His aunt and uncle, ordinary Muggles, strive to make Harry ‘normal’, and never told him of his parents. Harry is sent to Hogwarts, to learn of the world he was denied all his life. He makes new friends, and new enemies. He proves to take after his father, with a sense of adventure, and a sense of justice, both of which lead him to attempt to protect a priceless artifact he believes will be stolen. Granted, he did try to warn faculty, but they just couldn’t fathom it possible that anyone could get to the artifact, through its protections.

 

I adore these books. Rereading it, I was reminded of how gritty it could be, for a young kids book. It deals with themes of child neglect and emotional abuse, bullying, murder, and even that children Harry’s age can be more mature than we credit. We, as a society, seem to have forgotten how quickly children used to need to grow up. There are also strong themes of live, friendship, and hope. Story is well-written and easy to lose oneself in. One series I always recommend!

 

🎻🎻🎻🎻🎻 Highly recommended

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