Rereading Harry Potter as an Adult – Week 4

Rereading Harry Potter as an Adult – Week 4

Hello again! Buckle up, it’s time for week 4 of Rereading Harry Potter as an Adult and we’re starting on The Chamber of Secrets this week! Don’t you just love the promise in that title? It just screams, “Oh boy, are we in for a treat”. I’m looking forward to all things Dobby and Gilderoy Lockhart and of course Ginny is starting Hogwarts this year and we’re meeting Lucius Malfoy for the first time. We’re going to have some fun!

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Just like last year, the story starts on Harry’s birthday, July 31st, which is also (fun fact) J.K. Rowling’s birthday, by the way. This year on his birthday, Mr and Mrs Mason come over to make a business deal with Uncle Vernon. I remember playing the Lego Harry Potter games a few years ago and unlocking the Mr and Mrs Mason characters and having NO idea who these muggles were. So apparently they’re the drill people.

I laughed out loud when Harry was trying to scare Dudley by pretending to do magic by yelling ‘Jiggery pokery! Hocus pocus.. squiggly wiggly..’. We muggles will believe anything.

Enter: Dobby the House Elf

Harry is sent upstairs during Mr and Mrs Mason’s visit and there, on the bed, is one of our (or my) absolute favourite characters of the entire series and one of the saddest deaths, Dobby! With his iconic “Bad Dobby, Bad Dobby!”. Dobby tries to get Harry to not go back to Hogwarts this year, for there is a plot “to make the most terrible things happen”. It only just now occurred to me that Dobby knows of this plot because he is Lucius Malfoy’s house elf and Lucius is of course plotting the whole opening the Chamber of Secrets by giving Ginny Tom Riddle’s diary thing. Yes, I know I’m dumb, but it only just clicked.

After Dobby drops Petunia’s cake on the floor (I’ve watched the movies too many times, because I was convinced he dropped it on Mrs Mason), Harry receives a letter from the Ministry to remind him that he’s not allowed to use magic outside of Hogwarts, signed by Mafalda Hopkirk. I thought I recognised the name and she is indeed mentioned in the Order of the Phoenix and she makes an appearance in the Deathly Hallows. I was a little confused, since I distinctly remember Harry practicing Lumos under the covers in one of the movies (I think the Prisoner of Azkaban), so that obviously doesn’t make sense. But I don’t think the whole not-being-allowed-to-do-magic-outside-of-school-thing is mentioned in the movies until Harry uses the Patronus charm to protect Dudley in the tunnel. Of course Uncle Vernon is having a field day finding out he’s not allowed to do magic.

Mr and Mrs Dursley lock Harry up in his room now that they know he can’t “magic” his way out and decide that he’s not going back to Hogwarts. Him being locked up finally makes sense now, I never really got that part. Locking him up because he dropped a cake on someone’s head didn’t really make sense to me. Lucky for Harry, Mr Weasley had overheard at the Ministry that Harry had used magic in front of muggles and Ron decides to rescue him by having his brothers fly the Ford Anglia to Harry’s house and break him free.

The Burrow

They gather Harry’s stuff and fly to the Burrow, where Mrs Weasley is waiting for them, furious. This is the first time Harry visits the Burrow and meets Arthur Weasley. Mr. Weasley is more interested in how flying the car went than in being angry with them. I love Mr. Weasley’s fascination with muggle stuff.

They travel by Floo Powder to Diagon Alley as soon as they receive their Hogwarts letters. This years’ book list consists for 90% of Gilderoy Lockhart’s books, which makes me wonder how they’re going to use those in all their other school subjects, but okay. Harry, of course, messes up the words and ends up at Borgin and Burkes, the first of many times this store plays a role in the story. Draco and Lucius Malfoy enter the shop and Harry hides in a closet that resembles the Vanishing Cabinet from the Room of Requirement a little too much (coincidence? I think not.). Draco is making all sorts of petty comments on Harry, Ron and Hermione and Lucius is telling him off, much to Harry’s (and my) delight.

When Draco and Lucius leave, Harry leaves his hiding place and exits the shop, ending up in Knockturn Alley. I’m guessing the name is probably derived from the word nocturnally, which fits the dodgy alley perfectly. Harry runs into Hagrid, who escorts him back to Diagon Alley, where Hermione and her parents and all of the Weasleys are waiting for him. Mr Weasley repairs Harry’s glasses (again). His glasses have been repaired two times now and I don’t remember anyone saying Oculus Reparo yet. Was the name of the spell made up just for the movie? Curious, very curious. They all continue to Flourish and Blotts to buy their school books and of course, there is Gilderoy Lockhart. Signing books and being all full of himself. Harry is forced to take pictures with him and receives all of his books for free. Because he has the kindest heart in the whole world, he gifts these books to Ginny and buys a himself a new set. It absolutely breaks my heart that the Weasleys are so poor. It never really occurred to me exactly how poor they were until I read about the nearly empty vault in Gringotts. And still they did so much for the Order, Dumbledore and Harry.

I never realised that Mr Weasley and Mr Malfoy ACTUALLY get into a fight at Flourish and Blotts. I always thought it was just an argument and some snarky comments on the Malfoys side and that was it, there Tom Riddles diary was in Ginny’s cauldron. But there was an actual, exciting fight. Blood was drawn. I love it.

The flight to Hogwarts

It’s time to go to King’s Cross to catch the Hogwarts Express. They have to drive back to the Burrow 3 times because one of the Weasleys has forgotten something, including Ginny’s diary. I can’t help but wonder if we could’ve avoided the whole Chamber of Secrets fiasco if Arthur had just said “I guess you’ll just have to do without”. I guess we’ll never know. I love the foreshadowing, though.

Of course, Ron and Harry can’t get onto the platform and they make the very wise and mature decision to just take Arthur Weasley’s car (which saves them the trouble of driving it home, I guess) and FLY to Hogwarts in it. Oh, the decision making skills of a 12-year-old. I guess Harry and Ron are now among the few people who know where Hogwarts is located exactly.

Harry and Ron crash into the Whomping Willow and Ron breaks his wand. I’ve always hated that he beaks his wand. It’s kind of hard to learn magic with a broken wand. The two of them sneak into Hogwarts and are caught by professor Snape, who is more than happy to expel them. Sadly that decision isn’t up to him and Dumbledore lets them off the hook. They do get detention, though. We’ll find out next week what that detention entails…

As always, thank you so much for reading! Feel free to subscribe if you want more bookish content. I’ll see you next week for week 5 of rereading Harry Potter.


Rereading Harry Potter as an adult – Introduction

Rereading Harry Potter as an adult – Introduction

Hello fellow bookworms!

Did you read the Harry Potter books as a kid or were you already grown up when the books came out? How much do you remember from it?

I’m not sure how old I was when I started reading the Harry Potter books, but I remember being around 10 or 11 when the final book came out. At the time, my school was holding a competition to come up with a name for their new reading corner and the winner could name three books and they would receive one of them. Obviously, it wouldn’t be a very good story if I didn’t win the competition, so surprise, surprise: I won! (I would tell you the name, but it doesn’t really translate into English, sorry). The three books I put on my list, were:

  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows;
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and;
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Yes, I was a very annoying kid. But, I knew what I wanted and I made sure they gave it to me. So I was no older than 11 or 12 when I finished reading the series. I’m pretty sure I reread the Philosopher’s Stone and the Chamber of Secrets a couple of times, but after the movies started coming out, I’ve been more focused on those than on the books. I recently noticed that I’ve started to forget a lot of details from the books, especially those things that aren’t featured in the movies (such as Peeves) and all the things that they changed in the movies (“HARRYDIDYOUPUTYOURNAMEINTHEGOBLETOFFIRE”, Dumbledore asked calmly.).

A little while ago, I decided that I wanted to reread the whole Harry Potter series. I’ve tried doing this before, but I usually stopped reading halfway through the first book to start a book I hadn’t read yet. So, I thought it would be a good idea to take you guys along with me! This way I’ll have a very good reason to keep going (cause I don’t want to let you guys down) and you’ll hopefully enjoy reading about what it’s like to reread Harry Potter as an “Adult”. Harry Potter has truly been a lifelong obsession for me, so feel free to leave comments or e-mail me, because I will take any excuse to talk about Harry Potter in a heartbeat.

I’ll be starting the Harry Potter reread in the first week of January and do a weekly short update about it on my blog, so my first post will be out around the 9th of January. I’m looking forward to it!

Thank you for reading and I’ll check in soon with the first part of my rereading Harry Potter journey!