TITLE: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter, #2)
AUTHOR: J.K. Rowling
AGE RANGE: MG
The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike. And strike it does. For in Harry’s second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls’ bathroom, and the unwanted attentions of Ron Weasley’s younger sister, Ginny. But each of these seem minor annoyances when the real trouble begins, and someone — or something — starts turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possibly be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects . . . Harry Potter himself?
| book 1 |
“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”
I believe I got most of my incoherent, rambling gushing out of the way with my review of the first book, so I’ll just talk about why I like Chamber of Secrets even better than The Sorcerer’s Stone. To be fair, I actually enjoy the plot of the first book a little bit more thoroughly, but I love the progressions made with the characters and world in this installment.
“Of all the trees we could’ve hit, we had to get one that hits back.”
Now that Rowling’s built up things enough for us to get a feel for the series—she’s pretty well set the stage by the time you start the second book, if you will—the humor absolutely shines in this book. I read this entire book in one sitting and laughed my way through the entire thing. I had honestly forgotten how hilarious the quips and one-liners are, and maybe that’s partially nostalgia talking, but I just think these kids are precious.
“Because that’s what Hermione does,” said Ron, shrugging. “When in doubt, go to the library.”
If I had to pick any one thing that stood out to me about this reread experience, it’s how much my views have shifted on little Ron Weasley. As a kid, I never liked him much—blasphemy, I know! I loved Harry and Hermione (and still adore them both), but Ron always struck me as the whiny, vaguely rude sidekick. As an adult, I’m seeing him in a whole new light. I found him so much more adorable than I ever had before, and I’ve just now begun to really recognize how absolute his affections are for his loved ones. (Sorry, someone’s cutting onions around here…)
“You will find that I will only truly have left this school when none here are loyal to me.”
If you, like me, haven’t reread this series in a long time, let me urge you to pick it up again, because as you can see, going through this journey again now is showing me so many new things I can’t believe I didn’t value enough to begin with.
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