“Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living, and, above all those who live without love.”
This spellbinding final installment in the Harry Potter series brings the 10 year franchise to a close. During this decade, Harry has captured the hearts of readers worldwide, immersing them in a world filled with the unimaginable. Thousands of fans flocked local bookstores, hoping to purchase a copy of the concluding novel when it was released in 2007. Through her writing, Rowling has woven an amazing tale of magic, friendship, and the never ending battle between good and evil.
The wizarding world has erupted in chaos after the return of Lord Voldemort. His steadily growing powers have rendered him unstoppable, leaving a trail of destruction in his path as he seeks to overrun the Ministry of Magic, rid the Wizarding World of Mudbloods, and seek revenge. Having discovered the secret to his immortality, the Golden Trio put their lives at risk for their friends and family. Harry, Ron, and Hermione face unspeakable dangers throughout the book, but even in the face of adversity, they never lose sight of those whom they are fighting to save. As death and destruction continue to plague the wizarding world, those who are fighting for a common goal must put aside their differences and unite if they plan to defeat the most powerful dark wizard of the century.
Once again, J.K. Rowling has astonished readers with her dramatic, unpredictable plot. The building suspense raises many questions from readers, which are eventually answered as the novel comes to a close. Whenever readers believed they have solved a mystery, two more arise. The dramatic action that is present immediately captures readers' attentions. I found it nearly impossible to set the book down and often stayed up into the wee hours of the morning to finish it.
Readers have been grieving the loss of their favorite characters during this novel. J.K. Rowling once stated in an interview that, to be a successful writer of children's literature, one had to be a "merciless killer." Let's just say that J.K. Rowling heeds her own advice. Many of the characters we have come to love over the years perish at the hands of a death eater. No matter where readers turn, they are followed by the deaths of such beloved characters. While many readers, myself included, view this as cruel and unnecessary, it adds a level of suspense to the novel, keeping readers alert and perched on the edges of their chairs.
There are several recurring concepts which appear throughout the series and are addressed in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as well. Among these is the saving power of love. As shown through Lily's final actions, love has the power to save others. Harry's only advantage over Lord Voldemort was this love, which protected him from harm at the hands of his foe. Additionally, the concept of good triumphing over evil is also present. As Professor Trelawney prophesied, "Neither can live while the other survives." This refers to Harry, who represents good, and Lord Voldemort, who is a representation of evil. The two would continue to clash until one ceased to exist.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by far, has been my favorite book from the series. Never before has Harry been faced with such extreme dangers. His courage and tenacity must be applauded, as he fights for what is right, never giving up on those he loves. He has matured greatly throughout the series, eventually understanding the importance of love and friendship. In he absence of Professor Dumbledore, he independently must face Lord Voldemort, fully aware that it may very well cost him his life.
The Harry Potter series has cast readers worldwide under its spell, enthralling them as they followed Harry throughout his years at Hogwarts. While many people have jumped on the fan wagon within recent years, there are some, like myself, who have followed the series from the very beginning. I've had the opportunity to watch Harry grow from a timid eleven year old into a young man who was willing to die for his loved ones. While we all knew this moment was coming, no one could predict its impact on our lives until it was actually upon us. Having grown up alongside Harry, I was devastated after the publication of the final book, feeling that part of my childhood had ended with the series. Looking back, I have never once regretted the time I have spent reading and rereading the series, committing it to memory. The Harry Potter series has served as more than a way to pass the time; it has helped to shape the person I am today.
“The scar had not pained Harry for nineteen years. All was well.”