My kids have read all seven of the Harry Potter novels multiple times. That, by itself, is not to say that my children are the guardians of excellent literature. Their appreciation of Steinbeck, for instance, is not at the level I think Steinbeck deserves.
However, I will say that I think it's clear that a book like Rowling's, that creates its own worldwide market, deserves more than one star. It's written well enough, fun to read, and kids love it. Lots of adults love it, too, of course.
I trust I don't need to introduce the plot and ideas behind Harry Potter. But I do need to introduce: RIDICULOUS ONE STAR REVIEWS FOR Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
First off, a one star review from Knotenufthyme of Garden City, New Jersey, who says, "Perhaps HP is too profound for me."
I do not consider myself to be one of the
intelligencia, nor do I consider myself to be as well-read as I'd like to be,
however.......Then again, I never understood the Pokemon phenomenon either. Big
budget marketing is all I can think of to create such hype. I do, however, find
the covers of the books to be very attractive. All marketing related toys and
paraphenalia are very attractively packaged as well and seem to be of good
quality. Perhaps this is what draws the kids? Can this possibly be the reason
why adults enjoy the books as well?
This is an excellent point. Perhaps the books are popular because of the attractively packaged toys. No, wait. The toys were as a result of the movies. Which came about because of the popularity of the books, which means... which means that the popularity of Harry Potter must have something to do with Pokemon?
As reviewer Spazzer said in his one star review, "I appreciate her creativity, but there are
authors that can write much better than this.*ANIME ROCKS!*"
Now. Here's a review that attacks the underlying philosophies of Harry Potter's world:
Unlike the more mature fantasies of C.S. Lewis's
classic Narina books or King and Straub's Talisman which depict schools as
deadening embodiments of progressive aridity Rowling show's them as portals to
enchantment rather then as an evil to escape from, something which underscores
her "hero's" essential preppy sensibility & vapidity.
Boooo! School is the worst! Any book which shows school as fun must be destroyed. BURN THEM BURN THEM! Kill the preppies!
You know, the book might get more stars if it highlighted the other interesting characters in the book instead of Harry. For instance:
I don't know what to rate this book. It's not the
best, and the best character, i believe, is actually HEDWIG!!!! I really do
love hedwig, and i'm glad that JK Rowling made her up because the book would be
NOTHING. i resent this book except for the parts with hedwig
because a mail-carrying owl is so much more magical than the beginning of the
book, even though the beginning IS magical. (I was even hedwig for halloween)!
I despise this book, and
i only recommend it if you enjoy leafing through the book and finding lovely
parts about hedwig. I still think HEDWIG is the best character, and all the
humans are just...mostly fake. The movies have done a good job transforming
this book into something that everyone is crazy about.
(Hedwig fanatic, signing off!!!)
I guess that would be okay. The story of a bunch of owls fighting injustice or something.
And now, everyone's favorite reviewer, A Customer!
Another point that bothers me is that the point
of view never, ever shifts. It is all about Harry...Harry walked down the
hall...Harry saw the troll...Harry this, and Harry that. What about that Draco
kid? Why doesn't the author ever put anything in his perspective? Why can't the
readers opt to know how he is feeling? Why does everything need to be about
Harry? And if the author is going to center the whole entire series on one
person, at least they would add what he is actually thinking to the literature!
It's called italics. Please....
I mean, really! It's like this whole book is about Harry. Yawn. She might as well have called it "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" instead of, uh, something without Harry's name in the title. A little warning that Harry Potter would be the main character might have been nice.
Thomas from Europe says:
The style of H.Potter is , let's say simple.
dialogues are at best ridiculous.
The plot ... well there is no plot to speak
The characters are a mix of Donald Duck, Big Bad Wolf and Peter Pan.
Remember that one scene where Harry Potter is like, hey, let's try and stop Voldemort but then Donald Duck discovers there are chipmunks living in the Gryffindor dorm rooms and he gets really mad and starts quacking and the Big Bad Wolf tries to blow in past the magical defenses but Peter Pan comes and flies Harry away to Neverland so he won't have to go back to his Aunt and Uncle's house? I totally do.
Two more and we're done. First, Gaby says,
Book came with weird smell and didn't include the
cover on my hard-covered book. Will be sending back for a refund/exchange.
And lastly, winning the prize for "a review that cleverly also reviews my own intelligence," A Customer says:
"This book is as thick as my head."
I know this post was probably hard for a lot of the Potter fans out there, so let me close with this, to help restore your faith in humanity:
Check out the magic of an unending string of sequels to Ridiculous One Star Reviews from Amazon here. IF YOU DARE!