Goodreads Summary: Harry Potter has never played a sport while flying on a broomstick. He's never worn a Cloak of Invisibility, befriended a giant, or helped hatch a dragon. All Harry knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley. Harry's room is a tiny cupboard under the stairs, and he hasn't had a birthday party in ten years.Goodreads / The Book Depository
But all that is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives by owl messenger: a letter with an invitation to a wonderful place he never dreamed existed. There he finds not only friends, aerial sports, and magic around every corner, but a great destiny that's been waiting for him... if Harry can survive the encounter.
Genre: Young Adult (ish), fantasy
Publisher: Scholastic Press
How I Got it: Bought physical copy
First Line: "Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were very normal, thank you very much."
"'So light a fire!' Harry choked.
'Yes...of course...but there's no wood.'
"HAVE YOU GONE MAD!' Ron bellowed. 'ARE YOU A WITCH OR NOT!'"
Before I say anything else, let me just admit that I am extremely late to this party. Everyone on the face of this earth has read this series or at least heard about it; it's literally all over the place. I suppose I was a little curious, but the idea of the books just never seemed that interesting to me, so I always found excuses not to read it. It looked a little on the childish side, for one thing. I saw the movie trailers, listened to other people talk about the books, but always kind of half-ignored everything. I have no idea why I suddenly decided to read the first one. None.
But I did. The library gave me a very beat up copy to borrow (which contained strange black hairs in between the pages - ew), and I sped through the whole thing pretty quickly. Upon finishing, I realized that I loved it. It was much better than I expected it to be, even after all the hype. I then realized that if I wanted to read the rest of the series - and I most certainly did - it would take a while to get all the books from the library. So I did what any normal, sane person would do - I ordered the paperback box set!
The world of Hogwarts is so well thought out and magical it's crazy. The vividness with which I saw the school and all the activities going on within was amazing. I loved all the little rhymes and songs Rowling thought up, especially the one sung by the Sorting Hat. And since this is only book one, I can only assume that this setting will only become more enchanting later on in the series. The pacing of the story is very nice - things never really seem to lag in the middle or at any other point. Something is always going on with someone.
Third person point of view, as I've mentioned in some of my other reviews, is not my favorite narration at all. But the way the story was told made me realize that it was the perfect way for Harry Potter. From the very first page, I emphasized with him and wanted to learn more about him. The spookiness of the villain (whom I look forward to learning more about) added excitement to the book, and I became quite attached to the side characters as well. So all in all, of course I will be reading the rest of the HP books, because honestly, this was awesome.
Books in this series:
1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
2. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows