Mark Re-Reads ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’: Chapter 4

In the fourth chapter of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Rubeus Hagrid storms the Dursleys’ hideout to inform Harry that he is indeed a wizard and everything is lovely and wonderful. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to re-read Harry Potter.

It’s time for me to fall in love with Harry Potter all over again.

This was the point in this book that I dispensed with the desire to hide how much I was enjoying everything. I’ve said it before, but I came from Twilight knowing that, by default, I’d like this series just because…well, there was no way it could possibly be as bad as Meyer’s set of books. But I didn’t want that contrast to be so evident, so I certainly looked for what I could to poke fun at.

Hagrid easily represents a sort of savior figure to Harry and it would be pretty awesome if Jesus was a big hairy bear instead of the totally ripped white dude that we all see, right????

A giant of a man was standing in the doorway. His face was almost completely hidden by a long, shaggy mane of hair and a wild, tangled beard, but you could make out his eyes, glinting like black beetles under all the hair.

I, for one, welcome our oversized, furry overlord.

“Couldn’t make us a cup o’ tea, could yeh? It’s not been an easy journey…”

He strode over to the sofa where Dudley sat frozen with fear

“Budge up, yeh great lump,” said the stranger.

SERIOUSLY THE BEST THING EVER. I think I know why now: Hagrid is the very first person in this narrative to stand up to the abusers that are the Dursleys. I’m there was some subconscious bout of pure happiness to see this, as you all know how much I was bullied as a kid. Hagrid is the giant, benevolent hero all of us wanted when people picked on and hurt us.

“I demand that you leave at once, sir!” he said. “You are breaking and entering!”

“Ah, shut up, Dursley, yeh great prune,” said the gaint; he reached over the back of the sofa, jerked the gun out of Uncle Vernons hands, bent it into a know as easily as if it had been made of rubber, and threw it into a corner of the room.

I love the contrast of Vernon’s fake gentlemanly sensibility and the crude manner in which Hagrid completely ignores him in order to disarm him. Hagrid, I will love you until the end of time.

I also love the image of the entire shack staring at Hagrid as he goes about his business taking out all of the things in his coat to prepare tea and sausages. The immensity of Hagrid’s size is certainly intimidating to them all, but the strangeness of it all certainly doesn’t help. It’s weird to the Dudley and Harry because they’ve seen no such thing in their lives, but I imagine that Vernon and Petunia are thinking differently: Is this man a link to the magical world they’re hoping to never see again? I think that it’s always something on their minds and Harry’s bizarre acts over the past 10 years or so must have always reminded them of where he came from.

He passed the sausages to Harry, who was so hungry he had never tasted anything so wonderful…

Um…didn’t Petunia and Vernon specifically not feed him anything good? Hate them forever.

Hagrid’s rage at the Dursleys’ willing and knowing efforts to keep Harry in the dark is also magical and wonderful and I love it forever. You know…I know that in the beginning of Half-Blood Prince, Dumbledore calls them out for the awful way they treated Harry all those years but I wish he was as spiteful and mad as Hagrid is here. I don’t feel that the Dursleys ever rightly paid for what they did to Harry for most of his life. I appreciate Dudley’s slight “apology” of sorts, but they do get away with it all, don’t they?

“Yeh don’t know what yeh are?” he said finally.

Uncle Vernon finally found his voice.

“Stop!” he commanded. “Stop right there, sir! I forbid you to tell the boy anything!”

Oh, Vernon. Never ignite the rage of our precious Hagrid.

“Ah, go boil yer heads, both of yeh,” said Hagrid. “Harry—yer a wizard.”

Ah, that beautiful, succinct, and magical line. Harry Potter is a wizard. I think I’ll always adore the simplicity of it and what it means for Harry’s life. Here is the start of a long, complicated, and tragic journey, but the most important thing remains: Harry Potter is a wizard. He is magical.

WHERE ARE OUR HOGWARTS LETTERS, BY THE WAY. God, we are all so oppressed.

It’s weird that I also latched on to Muggle being a possibly prejudiced term so early on; it’s generally not meant that way, but it proves to become a representation of one type of bigotry that this series latches on to. Man, I really love how Rowling so seamlessly tied those themes into the larger story and made it so realistic and vital to everything. I mean, without the Muggle bias, Voldemort wouldn’t be Voldemort, would he?

“You knew?” said Harry. “You knew I’m a—a wizard?”

“Knew!” shrieked Aunt Petunia suddenly. “Knew! Of course we knew! How could you not be, my dratted sister being what she was? Oh, she got a letter just like that and disappeared off to that—that school—and came home every vacation with her pockets full of frog spawn, turning teacups into rats. I was the only one who saw her for what she was—a freak! But for my mother and father, oh no, it was Lily this and Lily that, they were proud of having a witch in the family!”

Actually, Petunia…you wanted to be a freak too. You demonized your sister because you couldn’t be a part of what she was and it ruled your life. So much so that you became an abusive, bigoted asshole to Harry

Nothing represents this best than her and Vernon’s concocted nonsense about how Harry’s parents died. Again, we’re reminded of Rowling’s statement that her mother’s death is littered in every chapter of this book. Very early on, death is an intricate part of the story. (I picked up how depressing this was during my first read, but reading Hagrid’s retelling of it is nothing short of gut-wrenching, precisely because we know what that sacrifice means to the series.

There is a neat line that is proof that Rowling sowed the seeds for later plots:

“No one ever lived after he decided ter kill ‘em, no one except you, an’ he’d killed some o’ the best witches an’ wizards of the age—the McKinnons, the Bones, the Prewetts—an’ you was only a baby, an’ you lived.”

The Bones and the Prewetts. Amanda’s relatives and Molly Weasley’s brothers. (Weren’t they killed by Dolohov, though?)

Vernon, unsurprisingly, has to interrupte this Parade of Sad in order to be Biggest Bigot #1.

“Now, you listen here, boy,” he snarled, “I accept there’s something strange about you, probably nothing a good beating wouldn’t have cured—and as for all this about your parents, well, they were weirdoes, no denying it, and the world’s better off without them in my opinion—asked for all they got, getting mixed up with these wizarding types—just what I expected, always knew they’d come to a sticky end—“

Man, this is even more offensive than the first time. It’s so presumptuous and cruel! He literally said the world is better off without Harry’s parents right to his face. Also, it is kind of ironic that he’s technically right? Harry’s mother’s death allows what happens at the end of Deathly Hallows to occur. Clearly, this isn’t what Vernon meant, but I had to point it out.

The seeds for the story of Harry’s parents’ death is all planted here, in addition to chapter one, as Hagrid tells Harry how strange it was that something about him stumped Voldemort and caused him to go into hiding. Man, how would I have ever guessed that Lily’s sacrifice saved everything? This shit is straight genius, guys.

But he had finally gone too far. Hagrid seized his umbrella and whirled it over his head, “NEVER—“ he thundered, “—INSULT—ALBUS—DUMBLEDORE—IN—FRONT—OF—ME!”

Hagrid’s very special manger is my very special manger. It is so beautiful, right?

“Oh, well—I was at Hogwarts meself but I—er—got expelled, ter tell yeh the truth. In me third year. They snapped me wand in half an’ everything. But Dumbledore let me stay on as a gamekeeper. Great man, Dumbledore.”

“Why were you expelled?”

“It’s gettin’ late and we’ve got lots ter do tomorrow,” said Hagrid loudly.

HAHAHAHAHA. Oh, Hagrid. Now I’m starting to understand how unbearable this must have been, as I wondered aloud why Hagrid was expelled and all of you knew the precise answer. I AM BEGINNING TO UNDERSTAND THE VERY SPECIAL PAIN OF HARRY POTTER SPOILERS.

Next up: Diagon Alley is the best place ever and why is all this not real.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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257 Responses to Mark Re-Reads ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’: Chapter 4

  1. lindseytinsey says:

    YAAAAAAY! for Harry Potter re-reads 😀 😀 😀

  2. lindseytinsey says:

    Mark you should, if you haven't already, watch the documentary "JK Rowling: A Year in the Life"
    You can find it on youtube or on disc 2 of Half-Blood Prince DVD.
    It was filmed while she was finishing up writing Deathly Hallows 🙂

  3. Pan says:

    WHERE ARE OUR HOGWARTS LETTERS, BY THE WAY. God, we are all so oppressed.

    Yep. No pokémon at the age of 10, no letter from Hogwarts at the age of 11 – my life has to be the saddest EVER.
    Reality sucks.

    • EldaTaluta says:

      Our lives have been endlessly disappointing, but if we all work together our children may be able to enjoy a better future. A future filled with pokémon and wizardry.

    • TheRedQueen says:

      And on top of both those harrowing events (I SERIOUSLY waited for my Hogwarts letter the summer I turned 11. No lie.), I never got to go to Camp Half-Blood OR wander into a wardrobe, go on magical adventures, and become the queen of a totally awesome magical land.

      ~My life is filled with tragedy~

      • Kiryn says:

        Lol, I waited for my Hogwarts letter too. I was seven when I first read this series, so I legit waited for my letter to come on my eleventh birthday. Even though I technically knew that the books weren't real, and that I live in America besides, I still hoped. My eleventh birthday was the saddest ever–no Hogwarts letter, obviously. Thanks, Rowling, for breaking the hearts of eleven year olds everywhere. And we dearly love you for it anyway.

        • Ruchira says:

          @Kiryn- Hmm, I read HP when I was 15. The first four books-all gobbled up in a couple of weeks. And then the unbearable wait for 5… So anyway, I was long past 11. Still, they could have called me as part of some International Muggle-Wizard-Integration-Exchange Programme.:P

        • TheRedQueen says:

          Yeah, I was nine, and I knew and understood the principle of fiction (I mean, I read ALL THE TIME so I wasn't unfamiliar with the idea of "stories") but I still totally waited with high expectations that summer, even though I also live in America and had no reason to believe that a British School of Wizardry would call up some kid halfway across the world to attend their awesome castle-school.

          Though even if I'd gotten the letter, I probably wouldn't have been able to afford the tuition.

          TRAGEDY, I TELL YOU.

      • Ruchira says:

        You just stole my thunder- I was going to mention wandering into the wardrobe(I presume we are both talking about Narnia?) Plus, I also never got to go through a looking glass, but the undelivered letter from Hogwarts has to be the biggest disappointment ever!

        • TheRedQueen says:

          Haha yeah we're definitely talking about Narnia 😀

          I never got to go through a looking glass either! And I never got to go traveling through various dimensions via Subtle Knife. There are so many things I wanted to do but just never got to.

          I was so completely depressed on my 11th birthday (which is only days after Harry's, so the timeline was perfect to me) when my letter didn't arrive. I moped around hoping it was just running late, but on September 1, when the term at Hogwarts started, I was completely crushed.

          Seriously, why are our lives so completely ~tragic~?

      • Anonymouse says:

        I'm not giving up on Camp Half-blood…. there's no cut-off age for discovering you're a demigod.
        Children of Athena UNITE!

  4. Amy says:

    Harry Potter. <3 Forever something so incredibly special.

  5. Silverilly says:

    Now THIS, THIS is a MRHP review. This is all exciting and joyful and happy and furry overlord oh dear severus. I didn't really notice until now, but the first three chapters you re-read didn't seem to have that MRHP sparkle. Now I feel better.
    Hagrid, I love you, come knock down my door and tell me I'm a witch.

    • lindseytinsey says:

      Maybe Mark was thinking of Amanda Bynes? lol

    • Alexis says:

      Oh my god, I'm so happy I'm not the only who that ever bothered? They literally just leave the Dursley family completely stranded on a rock, ahahah. I mean, don't get me wrong, they're evil but still, lol

    • notemily says:

      I love that second one of Hagrid! Looks very watercolor-y.

    • Amanda says:

      I don't know who he was thinking of, but my name is Amanda and I got all excited, seeing my name in the review as there are NO AMANDAs in the series. 🙁

    • drippingmercury says:

      The picture of Hagrid with his pink umbrella makes me wonder: Did Ollivander custom make an extra-large wand for Hagrid? Or did anti-giant prejudice mean Hagrid was stuck with a human sized wand? It would have been so small for him. Imagine trying to cast spells with a toothpick. 🙁

      • Openattheclose says:

        I think his wand was 16 inches. I don't know though if that means it was custom made or if that was just a very large human-sized wand. And if anyone read this without their minds going into the gutter, I applaud them.

        • Ruchira says:

          Oh don't worry- my brain went down the drain years ago when I first started with HP, and I haven't bothered to find it again. So, yeah, I think the wands have all various sizes- for example Umbridge's wand is shorter and thicker…still, I don't get how the right combination of wood, core and dimensions is already pre-made by Ollivanders when the customer arrives- oh, the wand chooses the the wizard, all right, but how is always the right wand ready for the right wizard or witch? And slightly digressing- Voldemort's wand is yew- the tree associated with death, Harry's is holly- the one we associate with Christmas (and therefore all associated values of goodness and hope etc.). Just thought would point out.

        • paulineparadise says:

          I read this without my mind going into the gutter – until you said it. 😉 That's like not-thinking-of-a-pink-elephant.

          I think it was a large human-sized wand, after all the wands are pre-made.

          To answer the question about the 'right combination' and why they're pre-made: I think Ollivander made every possibility, and therefore all possible wands can choose you.

    • Kiryn says:

      You're thinking of Susan Bones. Mark was talking about Amelia Bones, that we meet in book 5, and who is the sister of Edgar Bones, killed by Voldemort.

    • blessthechildren says:

      We must now all throw boats at the Dursleys 😀

  6. kissoffools says:



  7. monkeybutter says:

    Yes! The Dursleys are so much worse now that you know exactly what happened to his parents and what he's going to go through in the next seven years! Vernon makes their sacrifice seem pointless. I hate him so much. Not Umbridge bad, but he's still worse than Voldemort. Ugh. Bring on the good wizards in Diagon Alley and the Weasleys!

    It really was rough trying to figure out what you could and couldn't say! This reread is a relief!

    • lineum67 says:

      are you saying that umbridge and uncle vernon are worse than voldemort? this seems like an exaggeration, seeing as voldemort is actually THE MOST EVIL WIZARD WHO EVER LIVED AND OUT TO DESTROY LOVE ITSELF, and umbridge and vernon dursley are just petty and cruel.

      • monkeybutter says:

        Maybe I should rephrase that. I hate them more. I hate Rita Skeeter more, too. They're more like real people, so their existence is a million times more offensive to me than Voldemort's is. His evil is predictable. He hates everything. He's going to kill you as quickly as he can. And though he does manipulate things, he's never openly placed in a position of trust. He's sort of a stock villian. The other three find new ways to be horrible all of the time. So, yeah, Voldemort's more dangerous and does more damage, but he doesn't piss me off the way Umbridge, Vernon, and Rita do.

      • Kiryn says:

        Actually, yes, I would say that Umbridge is worse than Voldemort. Seriously, give me Voldy to deal with before you give me Umbridge. Which is actually really tragic, because I will meet human Umbridges in my life and have to deal with them…oh god, why??? Anyway, it's like Mark said: Umbridge bleeds evil. Yes, Voldy is the big bad and everything, but Umbridge…there are no words.

    • lebeaumonde says:

      I literally said "what the fuck?" at your comment.
      how could Voldemort ever conceivably be better than Umbridge or Mr. Dursley?

  8. Treasure Cat says:

    I remember when you got to this chapter first time around and were all enthusiastic (to put it mildly rofl) over Hagrid. I think the people who had been nervous about you not liking HP – myself included – breathed a collective sigh of relief at that point and realised it was truly inevitable, you were always going to love HP.

    • monkeybutter says:

      I'm glad I missed the early review, because my nerves wouldn't have been able to handle it! It was much easier reading them when I knew he didn't hate the series.

    • ripchordgirl says:

      I actually got teary whenever Mark mentioned Hagrid from that point on. BECAUSE HAGRID (AND MARK) SHOULDN'T HAVE TO DEAL WITH THAT SHIT.

  9. lineum67 says:

    One of my favorite scenes in the first movie, too. Hands down.

  10. Anseflans says:

    I´m still kinda hoping they just forgot to send my letter and I´ll get invited to Hogwarts Summer School with other
    ´forgotten´ witches and wizards.´

    But seriously, how awesome would that be?

  11. for2005miles says:

    Chapter 5 is probably the point when I became painfully aware of how much I wanted this world to be real. Rowling almost makes you believe it could be possible, doesn't she?
    *sighs* such a tragic life us muggles live.

    • tarantallegra42 says:

      That's Diagon Alley, right? YEAH, i think that was the moment for me too. Is there a bit where they go get ice cream at Fortescue's? I remember just like TOTALLY FEELING HARRY'S HAPPINESS like COURSING THROUGH MY VEINS when i read that chapter. And my eight year old self was immersed in the SENSORY OVERLOAD that is Diagon Alley.

  12. theanagrace says:

    That is one of my favorite things about Harry Potter, the magic of the books doesn't fade over time, it changes so that you can love them in whole new ways.
    Mark, I just wanted to say that I started following you in September, and immediately caught up the five or so books worth so that I could follow along in real time. I want to thank you for making me love this series even more. I first read the books when I was young, and I had never thought about many of the things you pointed out in your reviews. I also wanted to thank you for sharing so much of yourself in the process. You've made me both laugh and cry, and I hope that you continue to expand my mind even more in the future. I'd like to think that I am becoming more observant of the world around me, and that is in no small part in response to your reviews.

    Thank you

    • jessimuhka says:

      I agree so much with this comment. I'd always liked the HP books, but I hadn't thought about them very much. And it makes me so happy that there's a blog this popular that talks about race and class and gender so thoughtfully. You rule Mark!

  13. stellaaaaakris says:

    Completely off topic, but, Mark, I was watching Fuse 40 best videos of 2010 or something like that and 30 Seconds to Mars came on with their video Kings and Queens. AND I SAW YOU!!!! I almost yelled, "I know that guy!" but then I realized I don't actually know you, just on the astral plane 🙁

    I think you meant either Amelia or Susan Bones, not Amanda. And yes, Molly's brothers were killed by Dolohov, who also killed Fred I think. Dolohov is to the Weasleys what Bellatrix is to Neville.

    Also, I think Dudley, in his own way, paid for his actions. After bullying Harry, he got attacked by a dementor who sucked all the happiness out of him and made him see things clearly. After he was much nicer to Mr. Potter.

    I'm so glad you're rereading these books, they're even more magical when you realize just how much JKR planned them out. She's magical.

    And Hagrid = love.

    • corporatecake says:

      Rookwood killed Fred. 🙁

    • halfbreedlover says:

      Didn't Fred technically die from the wall exploding?

      Your point stands though. 🙁

      • Kiryn says:

        Yes, that's what I was going to say. Fred died because the wall exploded. Percy went chasing after Rookwood after this, but I'd always thought that was because he just happened to be the closest Death Eater.

    • Kaybee42 says:

      I've read millions of comments from you but it's taken me till now to realise why I see your name and mentally go"STELLLLLLLL-AHHHHH!" It's from streetcar!! I am so slow sometimes!

    • myownmetaphor says:

      Well technically Voldy killed Molly's brothers just not directly. For example, I had family killed by Nazis. Hilter didn't actually end their life, but it was under his orders, so their deaths can be attributed to him.

      • stellaaaaakris says:

        Oh, I completely agree. I graduated with a degree in Holocaust studies and would NEVER say that Hitler wasn't directly responsible for the deaths of those millions of people. I just disagree with Eichmann in that following orders doesn't make one innocent of the crimes they themselves commit. Voldemort here is obviously Hitler and all the deaths caused at his hands or by his orders or even actions taken by his followers without his approval (such as Bellatrix's torture of the Longbottoms) are on his shoulders.

        I'm very sorry about your family.

  14. Tasneemoo says:

    "It’s weird to the Dudley" – You mean Dursley 🙂 sorry if I sound picky :s

    • Silverilly says:

      Nah, he means "It's weird to Dudley" (no the). It's weird to Dudley and Harry because they dun get it. It's not AS weird to Vernon or Petunia, who at least have a SLIGHT idea of whats going on.

  15. Tamy says:

    Mark I love you. I really do.
    Thanks for this re-reading! It's just like we all did the second time we took the HP books.
    "WHERE ARE OUR HOGWARTS LETTERS, BY THE WAY. God, we are all so oppressed".


    • lineum67 says:

      It's different though because we must have read the first book fifty times before we ever got to the seventh. Tsk tsk, Mark, should've read them over the span of 10 years like the rest of us!

  16. IsabelArcher2 says:

    Do you suppose that people who spoil others about Harry Potter (or anything for that matter) also go to the special kind of hell with child molesters and people who talk in the theatre?

    • stellaaaaakris says:

      Especially the ones who run into bookstores, yelling "SNAPE KILLS DUMBLEDORE!"

      • Reonyea says:

        I went to buy the Deathly Hallows at midnight on the day it was released – there was a queue of about 200 of us winding our way through our city centre – and we had to have a police excort because of the drunk people throwing stones at us. Stones. and shouting 'RON DIES!!!'. Now, they go to the special hell.

      • simply_shipping says:

        I think it makes me a bad Harry Potter fan, but I laughed at that one video with the drive-by spoiler. Of course, by the time I saw it, I had already finished reading HBP, so…

    • bookling says:

      Oh, they most certainly do go to that special hell. I'm sure Shepard Book is anti-spoilers.

    • lebeaumonde says:

      Although I see why you think this comment is funny, child molestation is no joke and a far cry more terrifying and scarring than book spoilers or people who talk in theaters. I'm sorry but child molestation is a thing that really bothers me when people joke about it. 🙁

      • Ruchira says:

        I agree. I was taken slightly aback with the comment. It was all funny, and the follow -ups too, but I too feel that certain things shouldn't be trivialized.
        No issues, by the way. I completely hate those who talk in the theatre, and especially the ones with thier mobiles NOT on silent mode. ARGH!!!!

        • Cee says:

          When I saw DH Part 1 a few weeks ago, I had the misfortune of sitting next to three charming young men who chattered ALL THE WAY THROUGH the movie. Finally I hissed at them to please be quiet and thankfully they did so and did not get vindictive but still…why on EARTH would you go to see a movie like that on OPENING NIGHT just so you can talk through it? (Really offensive language too, the whole thing was maddening.)

        • hpfish13 says:

          This was a reference to a quote from Firefly which Mark is watching on his Mark Watches blog at the moment

  17. paulineparadise says:

    I was wondering if it's a bad thing to write little notes in your paperback editions of these books.
    Myself, I make tiny images at the chapter title (everything in pencil, of course), I put light stripes under foreshadowing parts, I write name and object explanations (like where the name 'Dudley' came from, etcetera) and I put tiny smiley's at the incredibly funny parts.
    My friend considers this sacrilege, but I don't write in my hardcover editions!

    What do you think?

    • Silverilly says:

      But to each his own. I would probably use Post-it notes.

      • paulineparadise says:

        Keep in mind that I have all the hardcover editions (I don't write in those) as well. 😉 And with the amount of information I write on one page, it'll be filled with post-it notes…

        • Silverilly says:

          I will admit that my books are all in terrible shape (I like the term "well-used"). I'd love a whole new set.

          • Reonyea says:

            my Goblet of Fire is an absolute disaster. It's pretty much in three massive chunks, that luckily are all still stuck to the binding

            • auntypsycho says:

              My GoF AND OoTP are all stuck together with so much tape it's a wonder they are still readable … I'm asking (again) for a new set for Xmas … I know I won't get them though .. and if I did I wouldn't want to read them because they would end up in the same state

            • Silverilly says:

              My (hardcover!!!) OOtP literally has no back cover and two loose pages. The remainder is held together with red book tape in two misaligned chunks.

            • momigrator says:

              My GOF is in four sections and two of them are completely out of the binding. >< However, I can read them section by section, which is actually easier than trying to read one HUGE hardcover book. lol. I want to get a whole new box set someday, though. 🙂

          • Joanie says:

            Well-loved works even better.;)

    • corporatecake says:

      Considering how much I have to write in books for school, I think this is A-OKAY.

      Then again, I treat books with about as much tenderness as Voldemort treats Harry, so my HP books are falling apart at the seams anyway. I can't help it, they're well-used!

    • jessimuhka says:

      Books are for using, especially paperback books. It's not like the HP books are going to go out of print and you're sullying the last pristine copies available. And I love when I buy a used book and there are notes/commentary written in it, it's like a window into someone else's mind.

    • monkeybutter says:

      It's kind of adorable that you have an annotated Harry Potter. Books are meant to be enjoyed, so you're doing it right!

    • StefanieMarie says:

      I have three separate copies of the series: one that I read all the time and let people borrow, one that has all of my favorite parts underlined, and one that is in perfect condition, rarely even opened. It sits on my bookshelf and is beautiful.

    • dumbxblonde07 says:

      That's just librarians of your youth talking. I remember in 12th grade English when my teacher told us to write in our books, I had so much trouble doing it. Now I rarely ever read without a pencil in hand (unless I'm borrowing the book of course). I mainly just underline and bracket, but sometimes I'll write other page #s as references and such.

      A well-worn book is well-loved

    • Claretts says:

      I don't actually write anything on my books but THERE ARE TEAR STAINS ALL OVER THE DEPRESSING PARTS!

      Also, this comment reminds me of Harry's Quidditch Through The Ages and Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them. I love how Harry and Ron and the one comment by Hermione scribbled all over the pages.

      Even Hermione deigned (at least once) to write on books 🙂

    • Ruchira says:

      Wait. You have both paperbacks and hardcovers? You have FOURTEEN HP BOOKS?!!!

      • Ruchira says:

        My Harry Potter books are in quite good condition, but I have nothing against annotating books. In fact, being a Literature student, I can't- we do it all the time to our course books. But it had never occurred to me to do the same with HP.

      • paulineparadise says:

        Why yes of course. 🙂

        My friend has 14 as well- seven English paperbacks and seven Dutch hardcovers.

    • Warmouh says:

      Well, I wrote in my copy of the first House of Night book. But I don't think that was for the same reason =/

    • I've become used to writing in non-fiction books. My copy of "If Harry Potter ran general Electric" is full of notes and disagreements and corrections of quotes (which are taken from the Spanish horrors – I mean "translations") and lots of "LOL no. Go read DH" (The author is a fan of Dumbledore, and puts him as the paragon of truthfulness and virtue. The book was written before DH. Thus, many LOLs).

      But my HP books are as close to PERFECT as I can. In fact, I refused to let my dad read my CoS any more because he was breaking the spine. After I told him a million times NOT TO BREAK THE SPINE. But HBP was the first book I read In English, and still has translations of all the words I had to look up written in pencil at the bottom.

      And I totally vandalized my HBP in Spanish, fixing EVERY mistake of the translation I could remember. With HATRED. :/

  18. pennylane27 says:

    Oh man how I love Hagrid.. He doesn't take any bulshit from the Dursleys and I love that this is the first time someone actually defends Harry. It was very important for my 10-year-old me.
    When I read these books in English a year later, I was surprised by the way that Hagrid spoke, with the 'yeh' and 'meself' and such because they can't really translate that to Spanish. And that made me love JKR more because she taught me A LOT of English.

  19. corporatecake says:

    I started reading Harry Potter three months before my 11th birthday. I was convinced that I would get a letter among my presents that year. CONVINCED. When it didn't come, I rationalized that maybe it would come that summer, like Harry's did. No Hogwarts letter. 🙁 Instead of going to the wonder that is HOGWARTS, I had to go to MIDDLE SCHOOL. Which is just another way of saying "torture." Then I thought my letter got lost coming overseas. Then I thought that, well, maybe I can't go to Hogwarts, I have to go to the American wizard school, and maybe they don't start going there until they're in high school.

    I secretly kept up this delusion until I was fourteen years old. AKA way too old to justify this kind of thing. That is how much I wanted to be a witch.

    • Kate Monster says:

      I heard a story once, like it had been covered on the news or some magazine as one of life's little "oops!" moments…but I guess there was this woman whose daughter was a HUGE HP fan, and on the morning of her 11th birthday, she came downstairs to find a Hogwarts letter next to her cereal. Understandably, she positively ignited with excitement etc etc and then the mom had to tell her that it was fake, and that she had just done it as a surprise and a "happy birthday" sort of thing. And the girl went on some kind of rampage around the house and broke all kinds of shit in her despair.

      It's the kind of thing that could be a story about me, had my mom taken enough interest in my love of HP. D:

    • paulineparadise says:

      I'm still convinced wizards and witches start going to magic school at the age of 18 in the Netherlands.

      It's my only hope…

    • AccioUsername says:

      you're not the only one. :c

    • dumbxblonde07 says:

      Some poor bird got to carry my letter off "to Hogwarts" telling them they forgot me…

    • Tessa says:

      Are you me? Because this was my exact line of thinking from the time I was 10 (I read the books about 6 months before I turned 11) until I was 14 too.

    • kaybee42 says:

      Remember 'sabrina the teenage witch'? I was convinced that I would get my letter at 16 because she got her powers when she was 16 and I was like "Well obviously JKR just adjusted the times and years in the books because it would be too easy for the muggles to work out if she told the story truthfully…"

    • Whispy360 says:

      I was born just a few days before the first book came out, and I was "introduced" to the series when book 4 came out. So I was really young. Right up until my 11th birthday I just KNEW I was going to get my Hogwarts letter.

      Yep, you can imagine how cheerful I was on my 11th birthday. :/

  20. Meltha says:

    I always wondered how on earth they explained Dudley's pig tail to a surgeon… or did Petunia actually have to have him taken to a wizarding doctor?

  21. SueW says:

    I don't think I appreciated before just how jealous Petunia was of Lily.

  22. Abby says:

    "I, for one, welcome our oversized, furry overlord."

    OMG Simpsons reference!!!! I love you even more now.

  23. Kaci says:

    Now that you are starting to see how difficult it was not to spoil you, I think all of us who managed to avoid doing just that deserve some kind of award for our self-restraint. Nobel Prize in Teh Spoilerz or something. *nods*

  24. notemily says:

    That "turning teacups into rats" line always bothered me because of the Restriction of Underage Sorcery or whatever. I can buy that the Weasley kids would be doing magic all over the house, but Lily's family were Muggles, so she was the only one who could have been doing magic at that house.

    Vernon saying "nothing a good beating wouldn't have cured" makes me want to punch him in the face. Which I realize is ironic, but seriously: NO BEATING KIDS. EVER. YOU ARE A HORRIBLE PERSON.

    • Hermione_Danger says:

      I always assumed that the rule was relatively recent (which, no, there's no reason to think that), so maybe Lily changed one teacup into one rat and Petunia never let it go? *shrug*

      • Kiryn says:

        People have also come up with the theory that Muggle-borns are allowed to demonstrate one spell to their parents, to prove that they are actually learning something. Or it could have been something like accidental magic. But the point about the Snapes living nearby is a good one.

    • monkeybutter says:

      Good point. But the Ministry wasn't exactly consistent about enforcing the restriction on Harry, so they could have overlooked it in her case. There was also a witch and her son living in the area, so maybe their presence made it harder to determine who was doing the magic? Snape did zap flies in his bedroom, and presumably he didn't get in trouble for it. But he also told Lily about not doing magic outside of Hogwarts so I'M CONFUSED.

      The "nothing a good beating wouldn't have cured" line sadly foreshadows what we learn about Arianna in DH. It's not clear exactly what happened to her, but Vernon is just like those boys. 🙁

      • bell_erin_a says:

        The "nothing a good beating wouldn't have cured" line sadly foreshadows what we learn about Arianna in DH. It's not clear exactly what happened to her, but Vernon is just like those boys.

        Also, I love how over a decade later, people can still point these things out to me. JKR, you are so awesome.

      • Joanie says:

        Oh, I didn't even think about that. 🙁

      • notemily says:

        YES. And they're both just like bigoted people in our world who think that you can turn your kid straight by beating the gay out of him, or whatever. You see this all over the place: this person is different, so we have to hurt them until they're like us. Accepting them for who they are would just be TOO MUCH WORK.

        • Ruchira says:

          Also, I think Petunia and Argus Filch have got things in common- rejected by the magical world, therefore taking it out on those who are part of it. Filch does have a sadistic obsession with punishments.

  25. tookiecj says:

    Susan Bones is Harry's age, and Amelia Bones was the witch with the monacle at Harry's hearing in OOTP. I don't remember an Amanda Bones, but Amelia Bones was murdered during the books, presumably by Voldemort, but this was never confirmed.

  26. flootzavut says:


    Indeed. Reading you re-reading this is, in its own special way, just as good as reading you reading it for the first time. I don't think you will ever fullyrealise, mark, whata gift you gave us all in sharing your experience so vividly and letting us all read HP for-the-first-time-again. Well unless someone similarly awesome ever does a similar thing, and well… they'd hafta be pretty awesome 🙂

    I logged on in hopes of a new Hunger Games review but this was even better 😀

  27. tinzilla07 says:

    I was planning on re-reading along with you, but I was ill last week and all I felt like doing on Monday was reading PoA, so I did haha. I've started GoF now, so I'll probably just carry on with the rest of the series now. But I have the whole series fresh in my mind again so this is just as enjoyable reading your re-read reviews.

    And now you know how we felt trying not to spoil you! Actually I didn't find it that unbearable, I just found your ignorance either entertaining or sad depending on the situation.

  28. Sharon. says:


    PHEW! It feels so good being able to talk about everything without it being a spoiler.

    You can love or hate pretty much every character in HP, but everyone loves Hagrid.

    • corporatecake says:

      Not true. I kind of despise Hagrid. :\ And I swear I'm just not being contrary here.

      • Hermione_Danger says:

        How come? No rancor, legit wanting to know.

        • corporatecake says:

          Several reasons.

          The biggest is that when plot developments happen because a character is stupid or careless, it really grinds my gears. So Hagrid inadvertently letting Quirrel know how to get past Fluffy? No love from me. Plus all the stuff about Blast-Ended Skrewts and how he was keeping a freaking ACROMANTULA in Hogwarts? Fills me with irritation.

          Second, I just find his whole I'm a loveable half-giant and I love dangerous creatures thing kitschy and irritating. Seriously, how can a person be so lacking in common sense.

          So basically, "dim but loveable" characters are just a pet peeve of mine. It's a trope that I dislike. My hatred of Dobby is legendary among my fandom friends.

          It didn't help that I had money riding on him dying as of OotP, and no one likes to lose bets. Hagrid's continued existence was irritating me because it meant I was wrong.

          And the last nail in the coffin is that I really hate accents written phonetically in books. Fleur and Madame Maxime and Krum all irritate me when I actually read their dialogue. So every "yer" and "meself" grates on my nerves.

          Hagrid is like, specially designed to be a character I don't like. I don't begrudge other people liking him, because I can see why he does. But jfdka;fja he just irritates me so much.

      • Sharon. says:


        well… I'll change that

        Almost everyone loves Hagrid 😉

        If I may ask, why do you despise him? I'm just being curious, nothing wrong with not liking a character.

  29. Kate Monster says:

    The Bones and the Prewetts. Amanda’s relatives and Molly Weasley’s brothers. (Weren’t they killed by Dolohov, though?)

    I was like, "Yeah, Amanda! Wait…why doesn't this sound right?" and then I spent a completely INORDINATE amount of time trying to figure it out and realized that you meant "Amelia". CLOSE ENOUGH.

  30. albusseverus says:

    Mark, since you brought up Lily's sacrifice. i was wondering if you ever wondered why Jame's death didin't protect Lily and Harry?
    Well JKR answered this question in the wonderful Mugglent/TLC interview. I'm quoting a part of the interview.

    " Q: This is one of my burning questions since the third book – why did Voldemort offer Lily so many chances to live? Would he actually have let her live?

    JKR: Mhm.

    Q: Why?

    JKR: [silence] Can't tell you. But he did offer; you're absolutely right. Don't you want to ask me why James's death didn't protect Lily and Harry? There's your answer – you've just answered your own question – because she could have lived – and chose to die. James was going to be killed anyway. Do you see what I mean? I'm not saying James wasn't ready to; he died trying to protect his family, but he was going to be murdered anyway. He had no – he wasn't given a choice, so he rushed into it in a kind of animal way. I think there are distinctions in courage. James was immensely brave. But the caliber of Lily's bravery was, I think in this instance, higher because she could have saved herself. Now any mother, any normal mother would have done what Lily did. So in that sense, her courage too was of an animal quality but she was given time to choose. James wasn't. It's like an intruder entering your house, isn't it? You would instinctively rush them. But if in cold blood you were told, "Get out of the way," you know, what would you do? I mean, I don't think any mother would stand aside from their child. But does that answer it? She did very consciously lay down her life. She had a clear choice. –

    Q: And James didn't.

    JKR: Did he clearly die to try and protect Harry specifically given a clear choice? No. It's a subtle distinction and there's slightly more to it than that but that's most of the answer. "

    Since DH hadn't been published at the time, she couldn't answer why Lily was given the choice.

  31. daniellekittens says:

    Wormy was here last weekend, I thought he seemed down, but that was probably the news about the McKinnons; I cried all evening when I heard.


    • Joanie says:

      Nice catch! Wow, I totally skipped over the mention of the McKinnons in DH, only getting the part about Wormtail feeling guilty/nervous/scared/whatever. Wow, JKR.

      • Ruchira says:

        McKinnon was also there in the photograph Moody shows Harry in 5.

        • paulineparadise says:

          Yes she was, I don't have the actual text right here and I'm too lazy to look it up, but Moony says something like 'This was Marlene McKinnon, brightest witch I've ever met, entire family massacred MOVING ON"

  32. Emma says:

    you just give me goosebumps too often mr.

    ~harry potter is magical~

  33. Kylie says:

    Every single chapter is full of potential spoilers, oh my lord. You are beginning to understand. J.K. Rowling is a mad genius, for sirius.

    I love the fact that Hagrid tries to turn Dudley into a pig, but when it doesn't work he's all like "Whelp, I guess there wasn't much left to do. Oh well." and goes about his business while Harry is gaping like a fish at the sheer awesomeness he just witnessed. 🙂

  34. TheRedQueen says:

    Mark, I don't think you understand how very, very awesome it is for us that we can now talk about future events without spoiling you. Seriously, I would sometimes literally bite my lip (as if to keep from speaking? I don't know why my brain is the way it is) while I read my comments five or six times to make absolutely certain there were no spoilers. It was truly a trying experience.

    Now we can just speculate and talk about stuff and, hell, we can even point things out because YOU'RE ONE OF US NOW. (one of us…ONE OF US)

    I'm sorry, I'll stop now.

  35. bell_erin_a says:

    I don't have anything really new to say, but I love that I can come back to this book, especially this scene, and it still fills me with this warm, happy feeling every time. Because HP is awesome, JKR is even more so, and this book does so much setting up for the following ones that I still can't even believe it. Um, in conclusion: YAY HARRY POTTER!

  36. Quizzical says:

    your love of hagrid was the first time i realised how precious an experience this was all going to be to watch.


  37. _GG_ says:

    I love it that I always find something I haven't noticed before while rereading HP. Like i just realized that Hargid loves the animals and beasts that nobody else even likes, the ones that are ugly and scary, because that's what he is in other people's eyes. I suppose that he believes these animals are soft and lovable under their rough appearance just like him.

  38. Sweetneon says:

    Just when we're recovering from the fact that MRHP is over, turns out it's just getting doubled! Won't make up for the Wizarding World not being real, nothing will, but it cools off the pain somewhat.

    "Oh by the way VOLDEMORT MURDERED HARRY POTTER'S PARENTS but that is not a big deal and just a mere plot requirement to set up the real story"

    Indeed Mark, indeed. *chuckle* Reminding you of your past preconceptions. I feel so mean.

  39. blackrose says:

    "Harry’s mother’s death allows what happens at the end of Deathly Hallows to occur."

    Lily's love for Harry saved him, but so did Snape's love for Lily because Lily only had the choice to not be killed because Snape had asked Voldemort not to kill her and so Voldemort gave her a choice.

    • Joanie says:

      Yup. Basically it goes back to Snape.
      I read this fic where Lily went back to re-live the moment and expected the same choice but Voldemort didn't offer it. Turns out she broke off her relationship with Snape much earlier so he never did bother to ask for her survival, and Lily in return understood what Snape had done.

  40. dumbxblonde07 says:

    After I turned 11, the summer passed and I didn't get my letter – it made me so depressed.

  41. Joanie says:

    Your joy that comes from reading this series never fails to put a smile on my face. THIS WONDERFUL CHAPTER THAT CONVERTED MARK TO BEING A FAN.<3

    See what we mean about nearly bursting at the seams to avoid spoilers?! So much that we could've said and it's only chapter 4 of the first book.

  42. Hedjie says:

    How wonderful it was to watch you read this chapter for the first time; to witness the exact moment when you became JK's bitch 🙂 I know it felt amazing when it happened to me.

  43. jonni13 says:

    Haha I wrote a letter from a made up wizard school in Australia and had it waiting by my son's bed on his 11th birthday. I couldn't find a stuffed owl so his letter was delivered by stuffed baby penguin DON'T JUDGE OK!!!!

  44. Mauve_Avenger says:

    Re: the Prewetts being killed by Dolohov, actually if I remember correctly, they were surrounded by a group of Death Eaters, and it could have been any or all of them that killed the brothers, but only Dolohov was caught and imprisoned for it.

    The way Hagrid said it, I thought he was just using synecdoche (yay Hagrid). Voldemort is essentially President of the Death Eaters, so it makes sense (especially when you don't necessarily know who the Death Eaters are) to say that anything done by the Death Eaters is "Voldemort's doing."

    The Prewett story really bothered me, actually. If you don't connect the two Prewett mentions and don't read Rowling's interviews (if you're a Death of the Author person like I am), you don't have any reason to believe that Molly's been affected by the war any more than anyone else. She has seven kids (two of whom are twins like Fabian and Gideon and are seemingly named with them in mind), but she gives Fabian's watch to Harry instead, which is also the only time she even mentions having a brother. In text, there's no indication that Molly is a grieving younger sister or that her kids were brought up knowing their uncles' story. It just seems off to me.

    • Kiryn says:

      And Dolohov was the only one caught because the Prewett twins managed to kill the other Death Eaters before going down. Just thought I'd tack that on.

    • notemily says:

      It's hard because I really WANT to be Death of the Author with these books, but you can't, because there are little things that only come out through JKR's interviews. I've decided that the ones I like are true and the ones I don't like aren't. 😉

      • Mauve_Avenger says:

        It's probably just because my head is rather fuzzy right now, but I can't actually remember any Word of God announcements that I particularly liked, other than the "Dumbledore is gay" one. And even that wasn't a matter of adding to my understanding to the books, it was more of a "take that, heteronormativity" thing.

        ETA: Crookshanks is part kneazle! Now that was one I liked.

        • notemily says:

          I can think of a few. Some of them have to do with after the series ends–Harry and Dudley having awkward family visits, for one thing. Hermione going into Magical Law. I also like Dean Thomas's backstory, that his family never knew that his father was a wizard and was killed by Death Eaters–they thought he just walked out on them and never came back.

          I do like Dumbledore's Tragic Gayness because it makes me read the seventh book a little differently. It's a bit easier to forgive Dumbledore for going along with Grindelwald's ideas for a time, knowing that he wasn't just taken in intellectually, he was also in love.

          • Mauve_Avenger says:

            Ah, Dean's story. That's one I was forgetting. Though I've always been iffy on the logistics of hiding one's wizarding ability from a spouse. Mainly, what happens when your wife finally decides to throw that weird stick you always carry around in the garbage?

            Because I tend to prefer open-endedness, I really didn't like the epilogue and the "here's where they are now" info from interviews. It probably also helps that I was never particularly fond of the relationship-y stuff in the books themselves.

            The Dumbledore reveal I could give or take because my own (admittedly rather atypical) personal experiences made it believable/forgivable even without the added influence of love.

        • Tasneemoo says:

          I did not know that Crookshanks was part kneazle! I remember something being said about Crookshanks' identity being made clearer in 'Fantastic Beasts' but when I read it, I coun't find anything remotely similar to Crookshanks :/ Thanks for saying that! 🙂

      • THANK YOU, yes! Exactly! And JKR sets it up that way, too; her bio is part of the presentation of the series. I have friends in the meta/litcrit fandom who are very Death of the Author and get uncomfortable when I draw from JKR's life to make interpretations, but it's really integral. I still haven't given up on fantasies of attending Aeternitas or LeakyCon this year and giving a presentation on how JKR's biography illuminates the books.

    • *mind blown* OMG, I never realized before that Fred and George have the same initials as Fabian and Gideon. After one million re-reads of this series. Wow.

  45. Mauve_Avenger says:

    Also, Hagrid apparently knows how to cast nonverbal spells.

    • LadyLately says:

      Hargrid is wicked talented purely through sneakery. Dippet didn't know what he unleashed when he had him expelled, because if Hagrid ever quit his job, he'd be the bear version of James Bond.

  46. vaporeon13204 says:

    Hahaha, only onto chapter 4 and there's already SO MANY INFO DROPS! XD I seriously do love this series. <3

  47. Slartibartfast says:

    Ahh The joys of finding all the subtexts upon rereading. Its so much fun! In fact, ive read the series at least four times and STILL find little things like that. I forgotten all about the McKinnons! :O

    Keeping tight lipped about spoilers WAS SO HARD! Now you know.

    Hagrid wins.

  48. Revolution64 says:

    Told you it was FUCKING HARD to comment without spoilers while you were reading…

  49. jennreyn says:

    "“Now, you listen here, boy,” he snarled, “I accept there’s something strange about you, probably nothing a good beating wouldn’t have cured"

    Thinking about that line in the grander scheme of the entire series… think about what Vernon saying this to Harry and what happened to Ariana Dumbledore. YEAH VERNON BEATING CHILDREN FOR BEING WIZARDS TOTES SOLVES EVERYTHING DOESN'T IT, YOU ENORMOUS BIGOT.

    • Tasneemoo says:

      Vernon = typical British [or maybe even Worldwide…] middle aged man, assuming anything can be cured by beating it out of them :/ I can't believe he thought you could even give a dementor 'the old one-two'! 😮

  50. spiffy says:

    man, just…

    why can't i be a wizard, too?

  51. Robyn says:

    Susan or Amelia Bones. No Amanda.

  52. ghaweyriao6 says:

    Now for sad times: I like how you keep coming back to Rowling's comment about her mother's death being all over the books . . . it really is. That's one of the things I like so much about Harry Potter, is it doesn't shy away from death or treat it as reversable or cheap or make it too melodramatic (haha, well sometimes) – it lets people die and it lets those who stay behind grieve. When I went to go see Deathly Hallows with my mother she turned to me while Harry was visiting his parents' grave and said she really appreciated how this series dealt with loss, and it made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I also have to say that rereading the books after my father died really changed the way I looked at them – all of the death and the grief and the emotion seemed more real, instead of just kind of abstract stuff to move the plot along.

  53. Cathy (catd94) says:


    The owl that was supposed to deliver mine is stupid and got lost. My letter is on it's way. No one can convince me otherwise.

    I love these rereads<3

  54. Openattheclose says:

    <img src=>

    • pennylane27 says:

      Aaah, that moment was so special for my 11-year-old self. Robbie Coltrane is the perfect Hagrid <3

      • Openattheclose says:

        He really is. In the audiobooks, Jim Dale sounds very similar to Coltrane when he voices Hagrid. I suppose that was recorded before the movies were made though.

  55. gredandforge says:

    I'm 20 and I'm still waiting for Hagrid to come knocking down my door and take me to Hogwarts! I don't wanna learn Muggle biology and physics anymore, I'd rather be learning Charms and Transfiguration and broom-flying 😀 ah, a girl can dream eh?

  56. lebeaumonde says:

    I'm sorry, Mark…
    But who the HELL is Amanda?

  57. forthejokes says:

    As much as the Hunger Games is brilliant, I'm happier that you're posting your re-read up here because Harry Potter is so magical and reading this review made me smile 🙂 Also the MRHP reviews are quite different in tone to the Hunger Games, which have hardly any joy in them at all.

  58. SusanBones says:

    Mark, I had the biggest smile on my face when you posted your review of this chapter in your first blog. I knew you had become one of us, the hopelessly addicted fans of this series. Not everyone finds these books so fascinating. From that point on, I knew that the cynical Mark was gone forever. 🙂

  59. Starsea28 says:

    Amelia and Susan's relatives, yes. He killed the whole junior branch of the Bones family. Fabian and Gideon went down fighting a whole bunch of Death Eaters, as I recall, though Dolohov may have been the one who cast the killing curse. Marlene McKinnon was personally murdered by Voldemort, though.

    Also the moment where I fell head over heels for this book: Hagrid giving Dudley a pig's tail. Makes me want to punch the air even now. Despite how irritated I became with him later, I will always love Hagrid for that.

  60. Guest says:

    Hagrid is fun to hug- By Harry and the Potters

    Didn't know if it was up already but it always makes me happy.

    [youtube xfGiAKfnbl4 youtube]

  61. Tasneemoo says:

    I don't care how bad they taste, i still want one of Hagrids rock cakes <3 And a hug from him. A big, squishy hug.

  62. JaneMarple9 says:

    I really love the enterance of Hagrid – he's so matter-of-fact, and knows exactly how to deal with the Dursleys. He's a frightening looking protector. So many hidden clues in this chapter, with Petunia's rant (little did we know how much Petunia wanted to attend Hogwarts) and the real truth of how James and Lily died.
    Harry must have been so confused, but elated to know he was finally been removed from the Dursleys – for a while anyway

  63. Phoebe says:

    For that error (im not sure if it really is, you should check) you should submit it to mugglenet.coms book error section.

  64. autumnwalker23 says:

    I'm not nearly as awesome as Mark is, but I've recently started a blog where I am blogging while I re-read the HP series (for the millionth time). If anyone cares to check it out, (I've only just started, so I'm still on the second chapter of the Philosopher's Stone) here is the link:

    This has been a shameless plug. 🙂
    – Autumn Walker

  65. Kiryn says:

    Well, I wouldn't know. I'm just saying that Rookwood didn't DIRECTLY kill Fred–ie, by AKing him.

  66. Ruchira says:

    Mark, what would you do if someone asked you to re-read the Twilight series?:P

  67. Mark, hon, a new HP post from you is as good as getting a Hogwarts letter! Because of you, I'm even (huh) going to sign up on Twitter.

    I didn't catch on until this post that Hagrid tying the rifle into a knot is disarmament the same way that Expelliarmus is. Lovely! I always laugh with happiness whenever Hagrid overpowers human stuff with his simple strength, like when the Ministry tries to take him into custody in book 5 and the spells just bounce off him.

  68. blessthechildren says:

    We need moar Hagrid in our lives! I'm hoping for an HP review dump after you finish the first HG book.

  69. RaeLynn says:

    "but I came from Twilight knowing that, by default, I’d like this series just because…well, there was no way it could possibly be as bad as Meyer’s set of books."

    Now, since you've experienced the Harry Potter series, you will now be forever jaded from the pure brilliance and geniusness (especially after the re-read) that every series you read afterwards will be always missing something… they will never come up to par, and you will always be irritated with some aspect. I've read 7 series after HP, and I have not come across one that I have been as passionate about. No matter how good or addicting it is, there's always SOMETHING I complain about. In HP, I wouldn't change one thing.

  70. lisra says:

    And it only got better from then on.. except for all the teenage douchebaggery in 5 and 6 BUT OH WELL.

    I feel Rowling takes more than a few takes from Roald Dahl in her description of the Dursley's because they are so stupifyingly mean that it can't really be real.. but that's the point – so many things are beyond "real" here..

  71. LauraRivera64 says:

    Hagrid remains, throughout the entire series, the one constant. He never dies, never changes, never fails Harry. I think, as the introduction of new characters occur, that we forget how reliable Hagrid is, how truly important he is.

  72. Steve Jones says:

    Whenever I reread this chapter, I always get chills when Hagrid says “Some say he died. Codswallop, in my opinion. Dunno if he had enough human left in him to die.” This so brilliantly foreshadows the concept of the horcruxes, and proves how well planned out the whole series had been

  73. Emmy says:

    WHERE ARE OUR HOGWARTS LETTERS, BY THE WAY. God, we are all so oppressed.

    ahahahaha my thoughts exactly.

  74. SymphonyOfRain says:

    Something just struck me: The thing Dudley saw when he met the Dementors was himself. JKR said this. I don't think Dudley ever realized how he was acting- he's never known anything different. Subconsciously, he was afraid of this, afraid of being like his parents. I think a small part of him wanted to be nicer to Harry, but fear of his father and mother's reactions probably prevented this. Jealously and fear (but of Harry or Vernon?) might have been Petunia's. Fear and hatred of what he doesn't understand was Vernon's. Admittedly, this doesn't completely excuse them, but it's a fair possibility.

  75. Jesus was a big hairy bear instead of the totally ripped white dude that we all see, right????

    Well, Jesus had quite the beard. Also, ripped? I don't have *that* edition of the Bible XD

    But for my mother and father, oh no, it was Lily this and Lily that, they were proud of having a witch in the family!”

    You know, I think she may have been right about that. In DH it does seem the Evanses are too busy marvelling at Platform 9 3/4 to notice their daughters are having THE WORST FIGHT EVER right under their noses. I can believe their parents paid more attention to Lily than Petunia. 🙁

  76. Quincy Morris says:

    Harry Potter wins, man. A world of magic and adventure and joy await!

  77. Rebecca says:

    You forgot one small thing. When Hagrid says “Not sure if he had enough human left in him to die.” She was already planning the horcruxes. She’s been planning the horcruxes since chapter 4 of the first book.

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