Despite numerous setbacks and interruptions in my reading time, I am glad to say I made it through the book finally. FINALLY. (g) I've had it in my possession for about 38 hours. Given that I'm a slow reader, I'm impressed that I finished it already. (Mostly because I was worried some over-caffeinated teenager would spoil the ending for me.) At any rate.... I have two words.
It was by far the best of the series. Now for a quick review -- I promise not to give anything away, so don't worry about spoilers.
Synopsis: Harry Potter -- "The boy who lived" -- "The Chosen One" -- "A regular git" -- sets out on a mission to destroy Voldemort's horcruxes (objects containing the Dark Lord's splintered soul). With Hermione and Ron at his side, he learns what it really means to be put in mortal danger as he battles Death Eaters and the Dark Lord who are determined to destroy him so they can take over the wizarding world. (Gah, that sounds really cheesy - but man, it doesn't even begin to describe this book. I simply didn't want to give anything away. And it's late. (G))
What can I say about this book? As mentioned above, it is seriously the best book in the series. It had my emotions running from one end of the spectrum to the other -- from complete happiness to complete dispair... from laughter to tears... so on and so forth. All the while, I was kept on the edge of my seat, with my heart in my throat -- worried/excited to see what would happen when I turned the page.
Rowling did NOT pull any punches in this book. Let me tell you -- I feel like the other books were but a mere warm-up to this one. All the security you became accustomed to in the first 6 was basically ripped away -- the characters forced to face the harsh reality of death, despair.... They grew up in this book, simple as that. No one was safe.
The plot was so well-crafted. I know a lot of writers complain that Rowling's style leaves much to be desired, but I couldn't disagree more. Her writing is so well-developed and detailed, that I felt like I was alongside the characters, experiencing everything first-hand. Sure, her writing isn't perfect, but her storytelling far outshines any flaws you may find.
She left plenty of clues along the way, and yeah, I guessed a few things that would happen. But there were MANY surprises--some so unexpected that I literally sat staring at the page in stunned silence. This happened quite a few times, actually.
Now, no book is _perfect_. To be fair, there were a few slack patches in there -- and the epilogue, well... yeah, it wasn't the greatest, and the last line left much to be desired... (You'll see.) (g) But overall, I can't think of a better way to end this series. I'm so pleased to have experienced these characters and to have lived in this world for the past few years.
Thank you, J.K. Rowling! I will miss everyone greatly!
Buy or Rent? Buy!!!!