I got the book at midnight and just turned the last page and darn it, I wanna talk about it.
More blank space…
Did I mention I’ve had 4 hours of sleep in the last 48?
Final warning: The following spoiler contains MAJOR plot points!
[spoiler]I know other people predicted it, but I was SO NOT expecting Dumbledore to get snuffed! I figured he’d at least make it to book 7 - I was expecting it to be one of the Weasleys! And Snape…I know it’s all got something to do with the Unbreakable Vow he took at the beginning, but I totally didn’t see that coming. I was glad to see Harry and Ginny finally hook up, and Neville and Luna, and Ron and Hermione, and Tonks and Lupin, and Bill and Fleur; honestly, it was like the Hogwarts version of the Dating Game there for a while. Overall, I liked this one much better than OotP; Harry was a little more in control, the plot seemed a little tighter. I was a little dissatisfied with the final scene; it just had a strong feeling of Scarlett standing on the ridge vowing, “As God is my witness…!” On the other hand, I get the definite feeling that Harry is all set to whup some serious ass in the final book.
One thing that slightly irritated me; the book’s called Half-Blood Prince, Rowling makes such a big deal about the Half-Blood Prince’s textbook, yet I didn’t see that it was all that crucial to the overall plot. Harry found one of Snape’s old texts with a bunch of notes scribbled in it. Big deal. Maybe I’m loopy from not sleeping, but I don’t see what that has to do with the overall plot of Harry learning Tom Riddle’s past from Dumbledore.
The Horcruxes? I really hope book 7 isn’t going to be a straight quest novel. I’m going to be very disappointed if Harry goes off to destroy the One Ring - oops, I mean if he goes off searching for Horcruxes - instead of returning to school for his final year. A big part of the charm of these books is Hogwarts itself.
I was hoping to find out more about the mirror Sirius gave Harry in book 5; maybe it’ll come up in the next one. We haven’t heard the last of Dumbledore, either; there’s already a portrait of him on the wall in the headmaster’s office. I wonder why Harry didn’t pay more attention to it while he was in there right after the fight, he’s spent enough time around magical portraits to realize he could communicate with Dumbledore through it.[/spoiler]