Author: J.K. Rowling
Age Classification: Middle Grade – Young Adult
Release: July 8, 1999
Let’s just say it right from the start. Prisoner of Azkaban was my book the first time I read the series so expectations were high.
We start our third year with Harry back in Pivot drive where Harry has blown up Marge Dursley, quickly packed his stuff to make a run for it, almost been run over by the night bus and been dropped off to Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic, all while there is a mass murdering wizard who has escaped from the wizarding prison, Azkaban.
Harry is still that “why me” teenager who still does not like rules and seems to find himself in trouble more than he intends to. However, I like that he does have some growth in the book and discovers some important facts about the past. As always, Harry relies heavily on his friends, Ron and Hermione, though this year his support group expands a little.
While Hermione busies herself with an insane and almost impossible class schedule and Ron sulks over Hermione’s new cat, Crookshanks, terrorising Scabbers, Ron’s rat, the Weasley Twins gift Harry a ticket to freedom. This freedom comes in the form of the Mauraders map which shows secret tunnels in and out of Hogwarts as well as the movements of everyone on the school grounds.
There is a new defence against the dark arts teacher again, though this one is much better at teaching the subject than the previous teacher, Gilderoy Lockhart *insert eye roll here*. Remus Lupin is a shaggy looking man but really knows the subject he is there to teach. He also knows the best cure after encountering those horrible dementors – chocolate! We will, however, gloss over the fact that my slight fear of the dark and the cold has been renewed after reading about the dementors in Prisoner of Azkaban again.
Other than that, your character pool is much the same as it was in the previous two novels – the teachers just teach and Draco is still a
dick *cough* I mean bully – and the only noticeable change was in Snape who was a little Snape-ier than usual though it was not 100% directed at Harry.
The plot was amazing – the new classes added interest and the new characters coming into play added depth to the story. I also love how little details from the previous books suddenly have greater meaning and, as I have already read, details that I know will mean something in the future of the series. Foreshadowing at its best! The new additions really make the story skyrocket into a 5-star rating by the halfway point, but the ending just cements its place at the top of the leaderboard! It not only met all of my expectations set by my first read through, it exceeded them!
Star Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
The only thing lacking is a series (even a shorter series?) about the Marauders. Come on! We NEED it!!
What are your thoughts on Prisoner of Azkaban?
Would you also like to see a Maurauders series?
Let me know in the comment section!
Until next time bibliophiles!