Tag Archives: Harry Potter

15.13: Tell Me What You Read and I’ll Tell You Who You Are

“Harry Potter is about confronting fears, finding inner strength and doing what is right in the face of adversity. Twilight is about how important it is to have a boyfriend.”

I didn’t say this, Stephen King did. I nearly fell off my chair from laughing when I did because I agreed with him SO MUCH. Don’t get me wrong. I read all four books of twilight, just like I did all seven Harry Potter books. I think the biggest difference for me what that I found so much significance in Harry’s life while I just kept praying for Bella to die.

Die, Bella. DIE!!! Sorry, I’ve been dying to say that for the longest time (yes, pun intended).

 

 

Dark & Twisted…

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09 in ’12: Choice

“The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches … born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies … and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not … and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives … the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies …”

The Prophecy made to Albus Dumbledore by Sybill Trelawney


I have been with Harry since the beginning.

When he first came to Hogwarts and found the Sorcerer’s Stone… When the Chamber of Secrets was opened… When he found out the Prizoner of Azkaban was his godfather… When the Goblet of Fire spit out his name as one of the Triwizard tournament… When he learned more about the Order of the Phoenix… When he “became” a Potion’s prodigy with the help of the Half-Blood Prince… When he found the Deathly Hallows and finally faced Lord Voldemort.

I was with Harry until the end.

* * *

In the course of my life I had made many, many choices. I made right ones and wrong ones… I made some that seemed more important than others. And then there were those that inadvertently changed my life.

One of the most conscious decisions that I have ever made was deciding that I would stop hiding behind my parents’ death. It was at that moment, I think, when I refused to be a victim of circumstance.

Several months before the last Harry Potter film was scheduled to be released, I wanted to have read book seven again. I was in such a state of excitement when the last book first came out that it somehow feels like I was in such a hurry to get through it. I wanted to live it again… And this time, to savor the moments between the pages.

Unfortunately, book seven wasn’t the only thing I wanted to relive – I also wanted to experience the build up towards it. So I decided to read books one to six before even picking up a copy of The Deathly Hallows.

Today, both parts 1 & 2 of The Deathly Hallows have been shown and I am in the middle of The Half-Blood Prince. While living through book six, I realized something.

* * *

Harry sat in thought for a moment, then asked, “So if all of his Horcruxes are destroyed, Voldemort could be killed?”

“Yes, I think so,” said Dumbledore. “Without his Horcruxes, Voldemort will be a mortal man with a maimed and diminished soul. Never forget, though, that while his should may be damaged beyond repair, his brain and his magical powers remain intact. It will take uncommon skill and power to kill a wizard like Voldemort even without his Horcruxes.”

“But I haven’t got uncommon skill and power,” said Harry, before he could stop himself.

“Yes you have,” said Dumbledore firmly. “You have a power that Voldemort has never had. You can – “

“I know!” said Harry impatiently. “I can love!” It was only with difficulty that he stopped himself adding, “Big deal!”

“Yes, Harry, you can love,” said Dumbledore, who looked as though he knew perfectly well what Harry had just refrained from saying. “Which, given everything that has happened to you, is a great and remarkable thing. You are still too young to understand how unusual you are, Harry.”

“So, when the prophecy sys that I’ll have ‘power the Dark Lord knows not,’ it just means – love?” asked Harry, feeling a little let down.

“Yes – just love,” said Dumbledore. “But Harry, never forget that what the prophecy says is only significant because Voldemort made it so. I told you this at the end of last year. Voldemort singled you out as the person who would be most dangerous to him – and in doing so, he made you the person who would be most dangerous to him!”

“But it comes to the same – “

“No, it doesn’t!” said Dumbledore, sounding impatient now. Pointing at Harry with his black, withered hand, he said, “You are setting too much story by the prophecy!”

“But,” sputtered Harry, “but you said the prophecy means – “

“If Voldemort had never heard of the prophecy, would it have been fulfilled? Would it have meant anything? Of course not! Do you think every prophecy in the Hall of Prophecy has been fulfilled?”

“But,” said Harry, bewildered, “but last year, you said one of us would have to kill the other – “

“Harry, Harry, only because Voldemort made a grave error, and acted on Professor Trelawney’s words! If Voldemort had never murdered your father, would he have imparted in you a furious desire for revenge? Of course not! If he had not forced your mother to die for you, would he have given you a magical protection he could not penetrate? Of course not, Harry! Don’t you see? Voldemort himself created his worst enemy, just as tyrants everywhere do! Have you any idea how much tyrants fear the people they oppress? All of them realize that, one day, amongst their many victims, there is sure to be one who rises against them and strikes back! Voldemort is not different! Always he was on the lookout for the one who would challenge him. He heard the prophecy and he leapt into action, with the result that he not only handpicked the man most likely to finish him, he handed him uniquely deadly weapons!”

“But – “

“It is essential that you understand this!” said Dumbledore, standing up and striding about the room, his glittering robes swooshing in his wake; Harry had never seen him so agitated. “By attempting to kill you, Voldemort himself singled out the remarkable person who sits here in front of me, and gave him the tools for the job! It’s Voldemort’s fault that you were able to see into his thoughts, his ambitions, that you even understand that snakelike language in which he gives orders, and yet, Harry, despite your privileged insight into Voldemort’s world (which, incidentally, is a gift any Death Eater would kill to have), you have never been seduced by the Dark Arts, never even for a second, shown the slightest desire to become one of Voldemort’s followers!”

“Of course, I haven’t!” said Harry indignantly. “He killed my mum and dad!”

“You are protected, in short, by your ability to love!” said Dumbledore loudly. “The only protection that can possibly work against the lure of power like Voldemort’s! In spite of all the temptation you have endured, all the suffering, you remain pure of heart, just as pure as you were at the age of eleven, when you stared into a mirror that reflected your heart’s desire, and it showed you only the way to thwart Lord Voldemort, and not immortality or riches. Harry, have you any idea how few wizards could have seen what you saw in hat mirror? Voldemort should have known then what he was dealing with, but he did not!

“But he knows it now. You have flitted into Lord Voldemort’s mind without damage to yourself, but he cannot possess you without enduring mortal agony, as he discovered in the Ministry. I do not think he understands why, Harry, but then, he was in such a hurry to mutilate his own soul, he never paused to understand the incomparable power of a soul that is untarnished and whole.”

“But, sir,” said Harry, making valiant efforts not to sound argumentative, “it all comes to the same thing, doesn’t it? I’ve got to try and kill him, or – “

“Got to?” said Dumbledore. “Of course you’ve got to! But not because of the prophecy! Because you, yourself, will never rest until you’ve tried! We both know it! Imagine, please, just for a moment, that you had never heard that prophecy! How would you feel about Voldemort now? Think!”

Harry watched Dumbledore striding up and down in front of him, and thought. He though t of his mother, his father, and Sirius. He thought of Cedric Diggory. He thought of all the terrible deeds he knew Lord Voldemort had done. A flame seemed to leap inside his chest, searing his throat.

“I’d want him finished,” said Harry quietly. “And I’d want to do it.”

“Of course you would!” cried Dumbledore. “You see, the prophecy does not mean you have to do anything! But the prophecy caused Lord Voldemort to mark you as his equal… In other words, you are free to choose your way, quite free to turn your back on the prophecy! But Voldemort continues to set store by the prophecy. He will continue to hunt you… which makes it certain, really, that – “

“That one of us is going to end up killing the other,” said Harry. “Yes.”

But he understood at last what Dumbledore had been trying to tell him.. It was, he thought, the difference between being dragged into the arena to face a battle to the death and walking into the arena with your head held high. Some people, perhaps, would say that there was little to choose between the two ways, but Dumbledore knew – and so do I, thought Harry, with a rush of fierce pride, and so did my parents – that there was all the difference in the world.

* * *

Most people think it was in book seven that Harry finally became a man and faced his death. But I realized that Harry had become a man far earlier than that… Even earlier than the heartbreaking moment when Dumbledore was killed.  It was that moment when he realized he had a choice.

And, at the end of Chapter 23 of the sixth book, I found that moment.



Ciao Bella!

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In the Advent of E-Books and the iPad… (55/365)

Just like so many other things in my life, there are those I run away from, and there are those I gravitate towards.  Books, I have begun to notice, fall into this pattern as well.  There are books I cannot put down once I’ve started reading (like Anita Daimant’s The Red Tent – a book I still cry over every single time I read it), and there are those that I just cannot seem to finish (like Milan Kundera’s The Unbearable Lightness of Being – of which I am still in chapter one).

Presently, I am reliving my journey with Harry Potter – the original plan was to have re-read all 7 books before the second part of the 7th movie came out, but that obviously did not pan out.  I’m currently in the middle of The Half-Blood Prince, excitedly anticipating Harry and Dumbledore’s trip to that little cave in the middle of nowhere.  And then, of course, there’s Dumbledore’s death at the end of the book.  Then it’ll be book 7 and I’ll be bawling while I read Rowling’s note the readers.

Then there’s Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games.  I’ve heard so much good stuff about this – and it was kind of hard to miss since bookstores and malls had banners containing reviews that included a quote from Stephanie Meyer saying it was something that she enjoyed reading.  It was very fortunate that I was able to get e-books of The Hunger Games, Catching Fire and Mockingjay – primarily done because I really don’t have enough money to buy all the books I want, but it was also out of curiosity and because Brian’s cousin, Elisha, was looking for copies too.  I mean, so many readers have said it was a good read  They couldn’t all be wrong, could they?

So I tried.  I mean I really tried.

I got really comfortable, opened up my pdf file and prepared myself to get caught up in the whirlwind that was supposedly one of the best books written in the last couple of years.  I started reading, and…

NOTHING.  

And when I say nothing, I mean nothing.  Not even the slightest spark of interest.

I have to admit, that’s a bit unusual for me – most of the time, I determinedly work my way through the story line until I get a vertical lift off (like Kathleen McGowan’s The Book of Love).  This time, most reminiscent of The Unbearable Lightness of Being, I just couldn’t get into it.  At least when I attempted to read The Unbearable Lightness of Being, I was able to get to the end of chapter 1.  This time, I couldn’t even get to page 3.  Since then, I’ve closed The Hunger Games file and have never attempted to read it again.  I haven’t even thought about giving it another go.  Until tonight.

I happened on this blog called The Read Queen and found a rather interesting way of possibly getting through books I have trouble finishing.  This particular blog put up a series called a Read-Along (and it did help that the book she’s currently reading is The Hunger Games).  Every week, the author reads a chapter and then writes about it – ensuring that the whole book eventually gets read, albeit the longer timeline.  It got me thinking… I could do this.  I could try reading it again – this time with armed with a plan.  Who knows?  Maybe I just need that little extra push to get to the point of vertical lift off.

So here’s to another go at The Hunger Games.  And since the weekend’s just beginning, the first Read-Along might just come out sooner than you think.


Blessed Be…

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It Always Comes Down to the Bottom Line

Boyfriend and I are getting ready to go out.  We’ll be heading off to watch the new Harry Potter film in Greenhills.  I can only hope that we’ll still be able to get seats.

I miss my Harry Potter books.  I have this need to read the seventh one again.  When it was first published it was like I had waited so long for it that I read it in such a hurry… That it was more important to get to the last page of the book than to actually enjoy the story.  That’s what I want now… to travel into the tale. And this time, I’ll make sure to take my time.

It’ll be a long weekend for me, so I really hope it’ll be a good one.

Saturday:

  • Watch Harry Potter (hopefully)
  • Eat at Little Asia (Boyfriend and I are celebrating our 16th monthsary)
  • Visit Fully Booked (I need to check on the new Matthew Reilly book again… that, and that particular branch’s selection on Training and Leadership books are awesome!)

Sunday:

  • Volleyball game in Meralco (We made it to the semi-finals!  Now if I could only get to the gym by 11:30 am)

I have Monday in as a rest day.  Based on experience, whenever we have a game, I always end up being unable to get out of bed the next day.  Sometimes I wonder if I should feel bad when I take days off like these, especially when I know that there’s work waiting for me back in Burgundy.  But then again, no one really looks for me when I’m there – I can even go on for days without having face-to-face conversations with my boss.  So why would it matter so much if I wasn’t there?

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