Prisoner of Azkaban chapters 13-16 discussion
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Lots of Quidditch action in these chapters.
And, of course you'll be expecting me to mention chapter 14, my favorite of this batch for obvious reasons. I think this is our first real hint of certain events that are revealed in book 7.
I'll have to skim and write more later.
I remember when I first read it I thought Cho was fairly clever to mark Harry knowing that he had a faster broom.
lg I agree about the tighter plotting. I think this book is very well plotted. It has to be to go back in time and repeat it with out making errors.
foggi I also love the revealing information about the adults.
It leaves me wondering if wizards are a more inclined toward dangerous activities since things like bones and wounds can be healed more easily than their muggle counterparts. It seems like the stunt played on Snape was not only very malicious and but very dangerous as well.
I think it is interesting the role that prophecy plays in the books. Trelawney is mocked consistently and yet has at least 2 real predictions. Harry is consistently striving against his presumed doom (the grim, telling the mirror at hogsmede he wasn't going to die etc.) but at the same time fullfilling it. There is an interesting argument to be had about free will and predestination in Harry Potter but I am not sure I am up to starting it yet.
I think Rowling likes to have it both ways. We like a hero with his own volition but we also need to know he is special, chosen and fated. But it isn't interesting if we know how things are going to turn out.
As to prophecy, generally I hate the "one special kid and his special prophecy" devices, but the reason it works here is that, although everyone knows about the Voldy incident, very few people even know there was a prophecy. That helps, tho I'm not sure why. I love that JKR leaves some ambiguity regarding prophecy in general. Just like real life, you can look at it different ways, and sometimes, it just might be real.
More notes on the chapters:
Hermione is behaving very much like a 13-year-old. She's moody, quick to take offense and generally obnoxious. I hated that year of my life.
I always hoped Crookshanks would turn out to be Lily's animagus form. Oh well.
First Cho Chang siting. I'm glad we get to hear about what an awesome quidditch player she is before we find out she's pretty. I never noticed before, but Harry "Tao of Steve's" Cho--he's desireless (of her at least), he's excellent in her presence (conjuring up a patronus without a second thought) and he's gone (winning the match and off with the other Gryffindors). No wonder Cho got the hots for him!
OK what was Sirius thinking wandering around the Gryffindor dorms carrying a knife? Steal or somehow get ahold of a wand, kill him with your bare hands (or jaws, when a dog). Don't go endangering innocent children with a knife! Poor Ron! Can you imagine?
Neville, Neville...almost as willing to provide convenient plot points as Hagrid.
Speaking of Hagrid, it's so touching that he sticks up for Hermione. Boys are such dolts!
Love the scene where Harry beats up Malfoy & co. I actually liked the way it was staged in the movie, with Ron & Hermione not knowing Harry was there at first. R&H were not fighting so much in the movie, they hang out a lot.
It's another case where Harry should have been expelled. Sometimes I really sympathize with Snape & Malfoy on that one.
I love the Snapey goodness in Chpt 14. He's completely right about James and Harry, they are arrogant and both get away with murder. I would be just as angry if I were Snape. The insults on the map are great.
Lupin to the rescue. At this point he still thinks Sirius is guilty. I get the sense he still has a sense of loyalty to his old friends, maybe hoping all is not as it seems. He never did tell Dumbledore about their illicit animagus status, even though it is key to finding Sirius and he must know it.
Love the way he alludes to the truth without giving anything away or alarming Harry. Harry ignores his sensible admonitions, of course.
Should we just jump ahead to DH?
I could go either way. I'm going to reread the series anyway.
As far as skipping to DH, I'd prefer not to. Let's stick with the series for a while longer.
What does everyone else think?
And we have foggi's excellent recap thread, so anyone who wants to revive the threads in the future can do so.
I have been thinking that Sirius attacking the painting and having the knife in the tower are a bit out of place and extreme and noone ever really goes back to them in the plot except to say "his actions have not been those of an innocent man"
LG I agree with you on the staging of the invisible Harry in hogsmede. I liked the movie better. I actually think Cuaron is the best filmically of the directors thus far. I loved the grey blue palate and the real expanded sense of Hogwarts and the magical he has. Plus he was a breath of fresh air after Chris "Home Alone" Columbus.
Okay, so what I'm hearing is that we're going to finish up PoA in the next two weeks, then take a couple of weeks off and start GoF in January? If that's the case, here's my weekly reminder: read chapters 17-20 for Monday's discussion!