Monthly book reviews are back (and so am I)! I have been creating drafts for this blog on and off for the past year and with pregnancy, travel, and work chaos, it just wasn’t something I was able to prioritize, but I am so excited to get everything back up and running! While I’ve been on maternity leave, one of my favorite things to do during baby naps to also keep things low-key has been diving back into reading. If you want to see my book reviews quicker, follow my Goodreads account!
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
The first Harry Potter book will always be a 10/10 (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️) for me. The nostalgia linked to this book is so deep for me and I could read this book a hundred times over and still love it as much as the last time I read it. If I am ever in a reading slump and want to ignite my fire for reading again, this is one of my go-to’s. Always a good, quick read that takes the reader back to Harry’s entrance into the wizarding world and reminds us all of the young, juvenile characters of the trio that will later evolve during their time at Hogwarts. Of course, the movie adaptation is very popular and well-known as well, but I prefer the book, simply for the additional details that are included and more in-depth character introductions.
Harry lives with his aunt, uncle, and cousin after his parents were murdered by the dark and powerful wizard Voldemort. His only living relatives couldn’t be more different from Harry. On Harry’s eleventh birthday, he receives a letter from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and learns that all of those mysterious things that seem to happen when he is around is actually because he is a wizard! After much trouble of finally obtaining this letter and learning a little more about his family history, Harry is off to start his first year at Hogwarts! There, he befriends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, but also gains an enemy in Draco Malfoy. Harry’s first year is full of adventure, magic, and some rule breaking when they learn that Hogwarts is housing something precious that someone is trying to steal. A wonderful first book in the seven book series that sets up Harry’s years to come at Hogwarts!
Missing scenes from the movie that are included in the book: Harry’s torment from Dudley and his gang, ways in which Harry’s Hogwarts’ letter was delivered, Harry meeting Draco for the first time in Diagon Alley (not on the train as portrayed in the movie), Harry getting dropped off by the Dursley’s to go to Hogwarts, the Sorting Hat’s song, Peeves the Poltergeist, the midnight duel, disposing of Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback, Snape’s puzzle to get to the Sorcerer’s Stone, and the Dursley’s picking Harry up after his first year/meeting the Weasley’s (very briefly).
🌟 Rating: 5 Stars
📖 Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Fiction, Adventure
#️⃣ Pages: 309 Pages
... to have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever. (page 299)
- Adultolescence ⭐️⭐️⭐️
Overall, I would give this a 5/10. This is a quick poetry read, that includes a lot of 💣 illustrations done by the author (in all honesty, I found the illustrations to be better than the majority of the poems).
I am someone who reads books cover to cover regardless, even though I know some prefer to skip around when it comes to poetry books. I am not familiar with Gabbie Hanna on social media/YouTube where her biggest presence is, but her style of humor and personality came out in this book. A lot of the poems read like a quick tweet that was about to be posted, which was sometimes enjoyable, and sometimes just felt like filler to make up the book (and some poems straight up said that they were written to meet a deadline or fill up pages). Some of the poems were super relatable, enjoyable, funny, or full of deep emotions, and those ones were great for me! I wish there were more poems that seemed to have more thought go into them or felt less rushed, but maybe then the book wouldn’t be a good representation of the author herself, which would then make the poems lose meaning to her.
These poems are not comparable to works by Rupi Kaur in my personal opinion, but again, that’s totally okay because I believe the poems are most reflective of their own writer and that is what is important. A quick and generally fun, light hearted read.
🌟 Rating: 3 Stars
📖 Genre: Young Adult, Poetry, Comedy
#️⃣ Pages: 248 Pages
life isn't about "fitting in," it's about finding people who move over. (page 229)
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Although I do think there is something extra special about Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s Stone, I also give the second book in Harry’s seven year Hogwarts experience a 10/10 (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️). The Chamber of Secrets begins with Harry finishing out his summer with the Dursleys after he completed his first year at Hogwarts. This book always made me question why Harry never just went to stay with Weasley family right from the jump after getting off the Hogwarts Express.
New creatures from the wizarding world are introduced, including house elves and the basilisk, as well as some key/recurring characters, including Ginny Weasley, Lucius Malfoy, and Moaning Myrtle. Something I love about this book is seeing the characters grow from their first year. Harry and Ron are still getting into trouble, Hermione is still the smartest in their class, and Malfoy is still a vile and antagonistic narcissist, but we learn a little more about Lord Voldemort’s past as well as Hagrid’s, and deep our toes deeper into the wizarding world. J.K. Rowling threw in more humor in this sequel, particularly with the introduction of Hogwarts’ newest Defense Against the Dark Arts professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, and her details really take the reader into Harry’s Hogwarts experience.
Harry cannot wait to return to Hogwarts after a summer with the Dursley’s… or can he? It doesn’t seem as though Harry’s friends have been missing him much, because he hasn’t received a single letter from them even after they promised to write. Just when Harry was starting to doubt that his entire first year at Hogwarts was real, he gets a visit from a mysterious house elf who warns Harry to not return to Hogwarts this year. Lucky for Harry, his friend Ron and his twin brothers Fred and George come to save Harry from the Dursley’s and he finishes out his summer at the Weasley’s home. Once everyone [finally] arrives at Hogwarts after some oddities, even more strange things start to happen. Harry, Ron, and Hermione try to figure out what dangerous being is petrifying not only their classmates, but also animals and ghosts! A great second year at Hogwarts that keeps readers coming back to see Harry through to his next year!
Missing scenes from the movie that are included in the book: De-gnoming at the Weasley’s house, Mr. Weasley’s fight with Draco’s father at Flourish and Blotts Bookstore, Colin Creevey’s elaborate obsession with Harry, Filch being a Squib, Peeves the Poltergeist, how to get the book for the Polyjuice Potion recipe, Nearly Headless Nick’s Deathday Party, any involvement of Professor Binns, foreshadowing attempts made by Ginny regarding the Chamber of Secrets, additional petrified victims, and the Valentine’s Day party/Lockhart’s Cupids.
🌟 Rating: 5 Stars
📖 Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Fiction, Adventure
#️⃣ Pages: 352 Pages
... the best of us must sometimes eat our words. (page 331)