Book Review #2: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Book Synopsis

Harry Potter returns to his fifth year at Hogwarts. No one believes his story about Voldemort's return and Cedric Diggory's death. To make matters worse, the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Dolores Umbridge, is the most horrible, awful teacher they've met. Apparently, the Ministry has put her there to spy on Hogwarts and stop people from believing Voldemort is back. Harry has strange dreams of locked doors and very long hallways. What could it all mean?

Charlotte's Rating

Charlotte's Review

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’, the fifth installment in Harry Potter series, had readers waiting for three years before it was released to the excitement of children and adults alike. But did it live up to expectations?

After the revelations of the previous book, Harry has to fight against the Ministry of Magic to make them believe that he isn’t the liar they believe him to be. He is also put under scrutiny after he is accused of using underage magic in order to fight off a dementor that attacks him and his cousin, Dudley. There is also trouble at Hogwarts with the arrival of Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher and Ministry official, Professor Umbridge, who doesn’t seem interested in teaching any of the practical side to defensive magic.

There are many aspects of this book that I liked. The creation of Dumbledore’s Army, right under the nose of Professor Umbridge, was one of my favourite aspects of the story, where Harry takes the leadership role and instructs his fellow students in defensive magic.

I also liked the character of Umbridge, externally completely calm, but inside she is ruthless and completely devoted to the Ministry.

There is also Harry’s relationship with Cho Chang, an awkward and unsure relationship which adds another dynamic to the book. His relationship with Ron and Hermione changes after their elevation to the role of prefect. The fact that they now have more responsibility appears to make Harry feel slightly excluded, something he hasn’t experienced a lot at Hogwarts.

However, I wasn’t as impressed with this book as I was with the others. As the longest book in the series I expected there to be much more action than there actually was, and at times I found that the pacing of the book was a little slow for my liking.

So although this book is good, I wouldn’t say it was J.K Rowling’s best. It needed a bit more pace in parts to keep the plot moving and I think it could have benefited from being a little shorter. But despite that it is still another exciting and challenging year at Hogwarts that will grab the attention of Harry Potter fans.

Disclaimer: May not be appropriate for children due to a mature theme.