Harry Potter Blogsplosion Day 5: Sam’s Review of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling + GIVEAWAY

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Please join me in welcoming guest reviewer Sam Cushion. Sam is an amazing musician who creates musical scores inspired by books!  He has most recently created an unofficial score for The Hunger Games.  To find out more about Sam, check out his website here.  Welcome to the Reflections of a Book Addict family Sam!!

I must first start by stating how honored I am to be able to be apart of this Harry Potter Blogsplosion!

After another dreadful summer spent at the Dursley’s it is time for Harry to embark on another year at Hogwarts. Before arriving to his third year at the School of Witchcraft and Wizardry Harry learns of the escape of a prisoner from Azkaban, Sirius Black, who has supposedly escaped to find and kill Harry for spoiling Voldemort’s plans.  Due to Black’s escape the security at Hogwarts is heavily increased, with Dementors, to protect the students.  Adding to this, Harry begins to learn more about the dark arts under the tutelage of the new defense against the dark arts teacher, Remus Lupin.  All of these new stressors begin to stretch Harry to the breaking point, all the while he continues to experience an increasing threat from his arch nemesis Voldemort.  Everything comes to a head when Ron is attacked by a large black dog while out with Harry and Hermione, and is dragged into the Shrieking Shack while Harry and Hermione are attacked by the Whomping Willow.  As they contemplate what to do next, they can hear Ron’s screams echoing from the shack.  Will they be able to save him in time?  Will Harry be able to escape from Sirius Black?

When Azkaban was first released it was claiming to be Rowling’s strongest work yet. Each book was getting better and better, and I must say that I agreed.  At this point in the series, the plot of each book becomes so intricate, that it would be nearly impossible for me to tell you every single thing that happens.  From the time The Prisoner of Azkaban was released and even to today, it  has been one of my favorite of the Potter books. So many very important events occur that it is hard to know where to start. We are introduced to Remus Lupin, the new defense against the dark arts teacher, Hagrid becomes a teacher, Harry discovers his Godfather, his new Firebolt broom, the Marauder’s Map – I could go on forever!

Prisoner of Azkaban is a very critical part of the Potter saga because we begin to learn more about Harry’s parents and the world as it was under Voldemort’s reign.  Even though Voldemort is not in this book, his evil presence is never gone from our thoughts.  Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s friendship grows stronger and we begin to feel even more like they are slowly becoming Harry’s family.  Ron’s father even takes on the role of father figure to Harry.  Remus Lupin gains the trust and loyalty of readers as he guides Harry through some difficult situations, as well as shows Harry a glimpse of who his parents were.  Our fondness for Dumbledore grows even more as he, as always, believes undeniably in Harry.  Of course we cannot forget Hagrid, who appears to be the rock behind Harry’s actions.   Harry’s life seems as though it is starting to fill up with people who truly care about him.

Each time I read about Harry, Ron, Hermione, and the other students at Hogwarts in Prisoner Of Azkaban I am reminded of why this is among my favorites in the Potter series. So much more is revealed about each character, bringing them all to us in a new light.  Harry, being only thirteen, is maturing into a young man instead of the young boy from books one and two. He grows wiser, and tries more and more to understand his past as well as the future that is to come.  The emotions throughout the whole book turn from childishness to adolescence, revealing to the reader the person and wizard Harry is destined to be.  As a person who loved Harry’s character as a lost, ragged boy, I found this new fearless, intelligent young man evolving throughout the story creating a special place in my heart.

4 out of 5 stars

Scholastic (1999)
Hardcover 435 pages
One lucky winner will have the opportunity to win a copy of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Paperback) by J.K. Rowling.  For your chance to win simply leave a comment in the thread below.  Comments will be accepted through midnight of Saturday July 30, 2011.  Winner will be picked at random and announced on Sunday July 31, 2011.  Giveaway open to US & Canadian residents only. Good luck!!

15 thoughts on “Harry Potter Blogsplosion Day 5: Sam’s Review of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling + GIVEAWAY

  1. PoA was my favorite among the series (though, Deathly Hallows is pretty darn close, sans the epilogue of doom). What touched me the most was the friendships among the Marauders, especially the lengths three friends went to just to keep the fourth one safe. James, Sirius, and even Peter risked the law and even death to keep Remus from hurting himself, and that level of trust and sacrifice really touched me and endeared these characters to me. And that friendship is also what’s so tragic about the Marauders as it’s what brought each and every one of them down.

    (That’s the same reason I *loathed* the third movie. They never once touched on the meaning of the names on the Marauders map, or why suddenly everyone could turn into an animal, or why Harry thought the stag at the lake was his father’s. Bad director, grr.)

    • Lori – I watched PoA again last night and kept saying that was the biggest thing that disappointed me about the film too! I was explaining to my friend who *shock* hasn’t read any of the books! They were saying they would have loved to have known that entire back story. (I think I may have convinced him to pick up the books!)

      • Yay for turning another convert! I understand that the movies have to take into consideration the percent of the audience who have never read any of the books (sacrilege, I know), but Hello Giant Gaping Plotholes in the PoA movie. Like I said, the only way you would’ve picked up on the nuances of the Marauder era was if you’d come into that film, already knowing Book 3. That, or at least reading some fanfiction.

        (And how sad is it that a couple good fanfics could’ve explained the Marauders better than the film/script?)


  2. Pingback: Harry Potter Blogsplosion Wrap-Up! « Reflections of a Book Addict

  3. Yes! Prisoner of Azkaban was my favorite book in the series!! And the last paragraph? Couldn’t have said it better. Thanks so much for the giveaway!

    I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.

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