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[personal profile] rhoddlet
All right. So

Caveat: I read all 759 pages of the American edition in the course of something like the four hours, thirty minutes between 1AM and 5:30AM.


Yeah, there was so much I loved. The foreshadowing about the twins. Kreacher's devotion ot Regulus. Narcissa lying to VOLDEMORT'S FUCKING FACE to save her son and the fascinating contrast between her standard of blood loyalty and that of Bellatrix's. I even shed a tear for Snape, and oh my God, oh my God, Dumbledore, simultaneously want to die and write one hundred million fics about brotherhood and where he doesn't trust Tom Riddle because he sees too much of himself in Tom. The blind, chained-up dragon. The story about wizards and truth being hidden in a children's story.

JKR has so, so, so many awesome ideas. Sweet holy God.

Still, though. Her technical instincts ain't the greatest, and she needed an editor she could trust so, so badly.

The Horcruxes were a bad deal. Cool in theory. Bad in practice to introduce in the penultimate book of a massive seven book series. You and I and the little birds all know it. Once JKR put book six out, she should have fucking rolled with the punches and invested wholeheartedly in the Horcruxes good because Lord knows she's good enough to do it when she's disciplined. I mean, look at the start of the book when she stops fucking around with floating blocks of Death Eater dialogue and comes back to Harry, near and dear and familiar to her heart. The quality of wri is so much higher that it's ridiculous. Maybe she was making some kind of point by contrasting Real Magic Artifiacts versus Voldemort's Shitty Artifacts, Both Born Out of Fear of Death But [insert some appropriate JKR-style point about selflessness and dealing with death], but it was motherfucking painful, especially with the huge expository/explanatory paragraphs where she had to explain the convolutedness of it all. Christ almighty, the stuff about the WAND TESTOSTERONE and so forth.

In fact, the last 200 pages of the book or so were like getting slapped in the face with a trout, what with the Return of the Son of the Bride of the Final Showdown at Hogwarts and Oh This Is a Death Sequence But Not Really and the Epilogue of Ten Thousand Fanfiction.net Chapter Fics. JKR was trying so hard to tie up all the loose ends.

Alas, I just ended up wondering whether there's some kind of wizarding law that requires marriage once you've had sex with somebody _____ number of times.

Date: 2007-07-26 05:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pogrebin.livejournal.com
AHAHA, I love this, man. Deathly Hallows is like the fandom Resurrection Stone. All of us are popping back up.

Rhod, you said everything about the book that I wanted to say.

Plz to be writing all those fics re: Dumbledore and Tom?

*rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 05:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com
I think you did a much better job with all the themes and actual substance. The point in your post about Dumbledore being Riddle with a desperate sense of responsibility is fascinating -- it really makes me wonder as to who was Riddle's Grindelwald. Did he have a Grindelwald? It doesn't seem like he did, and oh my God, *cradles head against the Dumbledore fic*

And yeah. Snape's death hit me like a ton of bricks. Dumbledore's hit me, but Snape dying was dropped the floor from under me. One moment he was living, and in the next, he wasn't, and oh my God, the idea that he went over to Dumbledore the moment that Voldemort threatened Lily. HOMFG AHHHH.

The stuff about sparing Lily and Snape's parentage really makes me think about Voldemort's poliitcal ideology -- on the one hand, it seems obvious that he doesn't actually care about parentage and is just using it as a power base because it resonates with the DE's, but my God, how dumb do they have to be?

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 07:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
Is it possible that Riddle is who he is because he didn't have a Grindelwald? Dumblefore had the magical carpet pulled out from under him with that whole ZOMG-WE-KILLED-MY-RETARDED-SISTER thing, and Riddle just didn't have that kind of guilt forced upon him at any point. Instead, he lived secure in the delusion that the world revolved around him and at the same time was constantly attempting to thwart only him. *Shrug*

Also: Hey girls, good to see you around. <3

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 07:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] quigonejinn.livejournal.com
Why, hello there, lady. :D

And yeah. I've been thinking a lot about Riddle and Dumbledore and the way that they match up. They're fascinating versions of each other both with and without -- Dumbledore almost definitely wished, while he was a kid, that he didn't have a family. Behold, Tom Riddle is a complete orphan.

It makes me wonder when Tom Riddle stopped feeling lonely.

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 07:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
I image that Riddle stopped feeling lonely when he stopped feeling in the whole. Voldemort experiences only the rashest of emotions, the extremes -- obsessive joy, anger, surprise -- his "feelings" are incredibly simple.

Loneliness, on the other hand, is far more insidious, lingering, complicated in that you can be lonely and still be surrounded by adoring peers.

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 09:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pogrebin.livejournal.com
Hello there Chloe my dear!

Dumbledore almost definitely wished, while he was a kid, that he didn't have a family. Behold, Tom Riddle is a complete orphan.

Ohgod, yes. That's perfect. Dumbledore recognizing it in Tom, recognizing himself and hating Tom but himself more, and making mistakes because he's not thinking rationally. The (literal) quest to destroy Tom is a (metaphorical) quest to destroy his own past, which he passes on to Harry- who has to die both literally and metaphorically. Which is a fairly weird thing I hadn't thought about. Seriously, how many times does this boy have to be AK'd?

Also, Harry as an amalgam of Dumbledore's crushing sense of responsibility (from where?- birth, the scar, the Boy Who Lived possibly) and Tom's orphan-child status.

Re: Tom and loneliness. Death Eaters as some sort of attempt at family-of-choice? Really the pureblood notion is such a transparent attempt at common ground, a family brought together by ideology instead of blood? (My personal opinion is that in this case JKR was probably riffing on Hitler's 'Deutschland' blond-hair-and-blue-eyes fixation even though he was Austrian and far from the Aryan ideal)

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-26 11:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com

Harry as an amalgam of Dumbledore and Riddle -- BRILLIANT. Holy shit. That's the perfect way to situate him. And I've been trying to figure out whether the Three Brothers story can be viewed as an analogy to the present day, like with Harry as the youngest brother who gets it right and . . . Tom as the first brother, who wants to conquer death with magic? And Dumbledore, who wants to conquer death by remedying the errors of the past?

The Boy Who Lived title gets to be kind of interesting in light of how Harry wins his final victory over Voldemort.

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-27 09:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
UM UM. First off, that is fucking perfect. About the brothers and Harry/Tom/Dumbedore....

Although I have to say, Harry's title is getting longer and longer, ie: The Boy Who Lived Then Died Then Lived Again? Which is kind of way cooler that just The Boy Who Lived, but I cannot help but imagine someone casually poking Harry's supposedly dead body with a stick as he lays motionless on the ground before Voldemort. It was probably Rookwood. It's always fucking Rookwood.

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-27 09:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
On that last note, can we talk about how HILARIOUS this is:


Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-27 10:20 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pogrebin.livejournal.com
um. Deatheaters uber alles?

Oh dear. What is actually hilarious is the wank and subsequent defending of people getting Dark Mark tattoos on [livejournal.com profile] hp_tattoos. Ah, fandom.

Re: *rises, all ghosty and mist-like*

Date: 2007-07-27 10:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
Fandom kills me dead in such a warm fuzzy way.

Date: 2007-07-26 05:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kitsune13.livejournal.com
Oh god, I've almost reached the stage where I can think semi-rationally about the twins, and you are SO, SO RIGHT. First George gets marked as different, by losing something that comes in a pair, so they're not identical anymore. And then -- okay, rationality gone. THE WOUND IS STILL RAW, etc.

Date: 2007-07-26 06:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com
Poor [livejournal.com profile] kitsune13. It was kind of horrid and sudden and seemingly pointless except SOME WEASLEY HAD TO DIE, AND. YEAH. :/

It kind of disappointed me that instead of showing how rough life after victory can be, JKR skipped to nineteen years afterward and had the kids running off to school and uh, yeah.

Date: 2007-07-26 09:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pogrebin.livejournal.com
The Epilogue aka The Four Pages That Fandom Forgot, as it will soon be known, I think.

Date: 2007-07-26 06:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] shoorihoshi.livejournal.com
"Wand of Testosterone".


Date: 2007-07-26 06:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com
God, that stuff drove me crazy when I was trying to wade through which wand had won which pissing match. >:|

Date: 2007-07-26 11:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] karabou.livejournal.com
When Percy came back I immediately thought of you and had to like, physically resist e-mailing you about it in all caps. It probably helped that I was BAWLING.

Date: 2007-07-26 11:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com

And yeah. I had to read the sentence, like, four times before I actually understood that Percy was back. WTF, sudden much? In my mental version of DH, I think Harry and Hermione and Co only get into the Ministry because Percy helps them.

Date: 2007-07-26 11:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] karabou.livejournal.com
LOL I didn't even care man, I was so insanely touched. XD And then like two seconds later FRED DIES and just. sigh. D:

Date: 2007-07-27 02:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ex-heteropho927.livejournal.com
Well said. I was kinda suprised at the Narcissa scene though, isn't Voldemort supposed to eat lies for breakfast or something? Unless she knows Occulmency... I guess that could be me being anal, but it just irked me.

Date: 2007-07-27 06:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com
Ahaha! I didn't even think about it. Let's pretend that it was a subtle nod to Occulmency then. XD

Date: 2007-07-27 12:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] calculette.livejournal.com
I LOVE YOU RHOD. SERIOUSLY I LOVE THIS BOOK SO HARD EXCEPT FOR ALL THE BITS WHERE IT SUCKED. Like, oh god, Nagini EXPLODING out of Bathilda Bagshot's head in Godric's Hollow! The Muggle Studies teacher in the first chapter lazily suspended above the table, swirling like some sick catnip toy?

PLEASE WRITE DUMBLEDORE/GRINDELWALD. Because, you know, the SET-UP ALONE: summer, Albus is young, bored and restless. Doesn't want to be an adult, doesn't want to be a child, definitely doesn't want to deal with his sister. He's bound for better things and all of a sudden his options have been cut short. Lying in the grass, thinking of the 7th possible use of dragon's blood - he'll come up with 12 later, but he's still stuck on 7 for now - and suddenly there's a pair of feet obscuring his view of the lazy summer sky, and Ms Bagshot is saying, as if from a great distance, "You boys should get along just fine."

PLEASE. Also, Gellert is apparently Hungarian for Gerard, which is a MUCH HOTTER NAME for him. So says wikipedia, which as we know is the fount of all knowledge.

Date: 2007-07-27 06:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rhoddlet.livejournal.com

I THINK I SHOULD BEG YOU FOR DUMBLEDORE/GRINDELWALD INSTEAD. And Gerard is far hotter than Gellert, and thanks to you, I really want something dirty and wrong and kind of kinky about DUMBLEDORE and GELLERT and DRAGON'S BLOOD. God, JKR really has a thing for beautiful evil dudes, doesn't she? 10,000 references in HBP to how Tom Riddle is the hottiest hottie ever and 10,0001 references to Gellert's blond curls and beautifulness.

And Dumbledore's blue eyes. XD Between him and Gellert, there's a whole Nazi dream! Or something.

So many good parts about this book, and so much hair-ripping-out awful, too. >:|

Date: 2007-07-27 09:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] reserve.livejournal.com
You know what's funny? People used to act like it was this creepy out-of-nowhere idea to compare ANYTHING in HP to Hitler/Nazis/WW2... etc, but as Meg said above, it couldn't be more obvious that JKR is ripping off of the whole Pure Race/Lebensraum crap. And people said that shit was crazy! That shit ain't crazy, it's canon.

Date: 2007-07-28 10:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] calculette.livejournal.com
I'm just calling him G now, because all the possible abbreviations of Gellert just make me want to weep: Gellie. Geller. Gazz. Gazzer. I wish she gave him a hotter name. Tom Riddle is the ultimate hot name, so minimalistically sexy! It's like she came up with all of them in a wet dream when she was 13.

I swear, the Nazi thing, and the entire "FOR THE GREATER GOOD" - vindication is sweet. Although if you think about it, none of the dates match up (yes, I have been reading wikipedia again, since my older brother STOLE my copy of the book): in the first book, we learn from a chocolate frog's card that Dumbledore defeated G in 1945 (which is also the date of - dum dum dummmm!) But in DH, we find out that Dumbledore says he hesitated for a few years before confronting G, and then defeating him - considering they met when they were around 19, this makes no sense. This would mean Dumbledore was born in the early 1900s, when I think he's closer to being born in the late 1800s.

Plus, you know - Numengard/ Nuremberg. OH JK YOU SLAY ME SO.
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