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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire


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Published by Dipankar Meshram

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Published by: Dipankar Meshram on May 18, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I read the first three Harry Potter books in one weekend, and the timing (two weeks before the fourth one in the series was released) was just right. Like a lot of people across the world, I waited in anticipation for the latest tome (and that it is, at 734 pages) by author J. K. Rowling. My excitement level was so high that on Saturday, July 8, the day the book was to be released (the book has been kept under wraps via nondisclosure agreements), at 12am (i.e., midnight on Friday), we waited an hour to get our own copy at Kepler's in Menlo Park, CA. The waiting was a ritual of sorts: the store had people dressed in costumes and there were parents with little kids, some just as excited as the children, and some not so aware (one mother asked her son if a costumed person was Dumbledore and the kid tersely replied "dementor"). A little kid in full costume, complete with big spectacles and a lightning bolt scar was really cute. I'm writing this on Sunday night, having just finished the book. The first two hundred or so pages were quite good. The story is formulaic as usual, but with a few subtle twists. For example, the start of the book is a classic ploy used in the horror genre: reveal something about what will happen toward the end in an enigmatic and sinister way. This usually leaves the reader wondering how the prologue connects to the rest of the events in the book (which is slowly brought to light). After that, Harry once again escapes the Dursleys, goes to Hogwarts (after a stopover at the Quidditch world cup), and is unwillingly chosen as the fourth champion in the Triwizard Tournament (which has not been held for over a century, because of the deaths that resulted from it). However, not only does Harry have to overcome the tasks set by the judges as part of the tournament, he also once again faces the threat of Voldemort, who may be at his most powerful ever. The second part of the book is the slowest, since a lot of it is about the tournament and Harry narrowly avoiding trouble from his teachers, as is generally the case. This is the part that I feel could've been significantly edited (overall, I think the book could've been shorter by about two hundred pages). The last two hundred pages of the book are the most exciting, and the best way to describe the outcome, without giving away any details, is that it is reminiscent in spirit to The Empire Strikes Back (at this point, I will also point out for those nay sayers of Harry Potter books that the fantasy world created here is not unlike that of the Star Wars mythos or what Lewis Carroll dreamt up). Not everything is cleanly resolved and there is definitely the promise of more interesting things to come. If waiting for the fourth book frustrated you, waiting for the fifth is definitely going to be worse. Clearly, this will involve Giants, Death Eaters, and, of course, Voldemort. The length (which is a minor issue---even though I feel part of the reason the book wasn't edited as short as it could've been is because of Rowling's increasing popularity (this trend is also seen among many other popular authors)), does add to the suspense. It's interesting to see how the book keeps a reader's attention. The Universe that has been created in the previous books

with more spells and hexes and weird characters and devices (a clock that tells where a person is.expands further. . instead of the time. The story is intricate and compelling. a magical eye that can see through the invisibility cloak). a basin for temporarily holding memories to be perused later. and will not disappoint. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire leaves behind the simpler plots seen in the first two books in the series and follows the trend of the third one.

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