Friday, 30 August 2013

Kid's Korner; Special review with Harry Potter (by J.K. Rowling)

Kid's Korner is a new weekly feature here at Once Upon a Series where we will be reviewing children's fiction. Whether you're looking for something to read with your little ones (especially with the school holidays now upon us) or just enjoy this type of fiction yourself, hopefully this feature will help to inspire your reading choices.

Once again, Harry Potter pops in... Another HPVirgin defeated as this book is working its way into the Once Upon A Series folks' minds... This is actually quite a different review today but it was really interesting to do & I hope you, any children you may have & even teens really enjoy reading this- if you know any kids thinking of reading, get them to read this & they may be convinced to read, before watching, the Harry Potter series! It's OK to do this of course but I'd love to hear that you've got people to read this, or just you've read it & enjoyed it!

Publisher - Bloomsbury Publishing
Publication Date - June 30th 1997
Paperback - 223 pages
Genre - Children's Fantasy

Both Of Us:
Source - Purchased
Rating - 4 out of 5: I really liked it
Reviewed by - Amy, with summary from Chrissie.

Book Info - Harry Potter has never played a sport while flying on a broomstick. He's never worn a cloak of invisibility, befriended a giant, or helped hatch a dragon. All Harry knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley. Harry's room is a tiny closet at the foot of the stairs, and he hasn't had a birthday party in eleven years. But all that is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives by owl messenger: a letter with an invitation to a wonderful place he never dreamed existed. There he finds not only friends, aerial sports, and magic around every corner, but a great destiny that's been waiting for him...if Harry can survive the encounter. Rescued from the outrageous neglect of his aunt and uncle, a young boy with a great destiny proves his worth while attending Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry.

A special kind of review... You'll see! Doesn't it remind you of our previous joint-review @ Once Upon A Series?
Amy: So, I haven’t read Harry Potter. How?
You must have heard so much, did you say?
Well I knew who Harry Potter was. You’re a wizard, Harry.
Living with the Dursleys, I knew. Arrived in the night.
Hagrid, Albus Dumbledore and Minnie Mcgonagall. Professors.
Giants- triple the man Voldermort is.
Or shall I call him He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named?
You-Know-Who. Slytherin.
I knew about that, and have heard of Snape.
There’s snakes and languages wizards sometimes use to communicate-
Speaking to snakes isn’t that normal though.
Should a Gryffindor have that power?
Not a Huffle Puff or a Ravenclaw,
Harry is one of a trio: him, Hermione and Ron.
They go through Hogwarts, year after year.
Death eaters nor Quidditch destroy their friendship.
But- the question is- is there more to Harry Potter?
I believe it must be about more than just those things.
More than just those and a tale of Azkaban to follow, or why is it so popular?
Everlasting hype, is that what made millions recommend it to me,
Or should I say- push it at me, guilt-tripping me...
I hadn’t read it. But then I did.
Director: CUT! This wasn’t supposed to be a poetry competition. You can’t tell us random things which you knew before reading, what else did you find out during reading? You’ve got to tell us your thoughts. This is a review. You’re writing a poem. So, we’ll need to get someone to help you.
Amy: What? So I’ll do a joint review? You can get someone to do that... Well, I better let the other person speak. Already have spouted over 200 hundred words and I’ve not yet said what I think.
Director: Exactly. Now we’re going to get somewhere. I’m going to get Chrissie to introduce this, is that OK?
Amy: I just said it was OK if they speak. Go on, then *looks at fellow reviewer* Anapneo!
Director: Who said Chrissie had blocked airways?
Amy: She wasn't speaking!
Director: They probably don’t want to speak to someone who has a babbling curse. If we undo it then maybe we can get on with this review in a... well, an efficient manner?

Amy: Pardon? Evanesco Director! *smiles at nicer companion than Director and then blanches* Wait, you’re not Chrissie! I need Chrissie to review this with but, umm... hello! *looks at boy and stands up so she can walk round him, she looks him up and down* No, you’re not really... Not really...
Harry: Um, sorry? I really am Harry Potter, if that’s who you mean. Who’s Chrissie and what do you mean, review?
Amy: You lived with muggles! How do you not know about book reviews? They give books, like your books, fame and then even now- people are still reviewing them, or sharing their opinions about the series with the world. Chrissie and I both review here... You’re in Once Upon A Series’ set and we were just about to discuss “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”.
Harry: How strange. I don’t know I arrived here. I’m tempted to wipe your memory but in the second book we find out that’s a bad idea- even with the right wand!
Amy: Ah, wands. Can I see your wand, please? I remember you walking into Diagon Alley with Hagrid, finding the shop with wands and really, even you were blown away! Mr. Ollivander sure likes his wands... Remembers every sale, from Hagrid’s wand to He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named, You-Know-Who!
Harry: Surely your set is safe enough to say Voldermort? Surely?
Amy: Shut up. I liked you better in the book. I just plain really liked all three of you especially. You make a fantastic trio, you know?
Harry: Well, thank you kindly.
Amy: I trust you don’t get bigheaded like Hermoine... Or Percy, he’s a lot worse. I don’t know how Ron copes with Hermoine and his brother both jabbering on like they came from the same nest. Talking about nests, I really think Hagrid should stop nurturing baby monsters. I have a feeling the Dragon wasn’t his first monster which got him, and you, in trouble! But, well, we’ll find out. Of course, there is so much to explore in the series and; I’m far from done with your world, Harry... What do you think about the fact that all the time people of many ages are finding the Harry Potter series...?
Harry: If you don’t mind me pointing it out, isn’t this supposed to be about your opinions?
Amy: Well, yes... I think it’s magical. Your turn!
Harry: That’s cheating, and you’ll think I’m bigheaded if I say...
Amy: Well, I’ll say it for you, your adventures are amazing. One thing that did annoy me was how your adventure happened in the middle of the exams, at the end of the year and whatnot. It’s not especially good to have a slow build up of the world, and characters, for more than half a book- why did it need to take half a book- and then zip zam... All the action is gone in a blink and you’re back in safe realms of Hogwarts being awarded house points!
Harry: Zip Zam isn’t a spell, it’s just weird, you know?
Amy: Don’t you know when to keep quiet? How many times? Shut up.
Harry: Maybe you’re pretending to be Hermione. Your hair isn't curly enough, you have the piles of books nailed but so far you haven’t actually corrected me, just told me to be quiet.
Amy: Ha, I’m not Hermoine. Book bloggers are a bit like her though, we definitely like books. Has she really never told you to be quiet?
Harry: *raises eyebrows* You are a muggle, you know.
Amy: I’m actually 2/7 wizard. I have 5 more books to go.
Harry: Go read. I refuse to talk to you anymore...
Amy: Tell Hermoine I love her and not to over-revise for exams, she has the talent and puts my procrastinating soul to shame...
Harry: *mumbles* She puts anyone to shame *disappears in a puff of smoke*
Amy: I really need to learn that spell...
Chrissie: What spell?
Amy: You’re here, finally. You’re late and you missed Harry...
Chrissie: You’re imagining things, Amy. So, you don’t need me?
Amy: You could do the Summary, as you didn't so much as do the introduction *tuts*
Chrissie: I already wrote one in my old review... Anyway, are you sure you met Harry; not Hermione?
Amy: *pouts* Could you read it, please? They won’t know when we transcribe this it’s copy and pasted...
Chrissie: So polite all of a sudden! *winks* We’ll transcribe that in. *coughs* Summary coming up...

Summary (from Chrissie) - A great start to what is supposed to be an amazing series. And I'm sure that things will continue to get even better as the series continues now that the scene has been so beautifully set in this first novel. I can't wait to see what else is in store for Harry and his friends.
(Amy: I literally couldn't wait... Umm, oops? I reviewed it finally though, with a little help from Chrissie, I hope you enjoy the books, or you may have already, & this fun review!)

Other books in this series:
1. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows


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