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Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter Book 5)

The fifth book in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series follows the darkest year yet for our young wizard, who finds himself knocked down a peg or three after the events of last year...

Harry Potter Book Five

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews
As his fifth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry approaches, 15-year-old Harry Potter is in full-blown adolescence, complete with regular outbursts of rage, a nearly debilitating crush, and the blooming of a powerful sense of rebellion. It's been yet another infuriating and boring summer with the despicable Dursleys, this time with minimal contact from our hero's non-Muggle friends from school. Harry is feeling especially edgy at the lack of news from the magic world, wondering when the freshly revived evil Lord Voldemort will strike. Returning to Hogwarts will be a relief... or will it?

The fifth book in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series follows the darkest year yet for our young wizard, who finds himself knocked down a peg or three after the events of last year. Somehow, over the summer, gossip (usually traced back to the magic world's newspaper, the Daily Prophet) has turned Harry's tragic and heroic encounter with Voldemort at the Triwizard Tournament into an excuse to ridicule and discount the teen. Even Professor Dumbledore, headmaster of the school, has come under scrutiny by the Ministry of Magic, which refuses to officially acknowledge the terrifying truth that Voldemort is back. Enter a particularly loathsome new character: the toadlike and simpering ("hem, hem") Dolores Umbridge, senior undersecretary to the Minister of Magic, who takes over the vacant position of Defense Against Dark Arts teacher--and in no time manages to become the High Inquisitor of Hogwarts, as well. Life isn't getting any easier for Harry Potter. With an overwhelming course load as the fifth years prepare for their Ordinary Wizarding Levels examinations (O.W.Ls), devastating changes in the Gryffindor Quidditch team lineup, vivid dreams about long hallways and closed doors, and increasing pain in his lightning-shaped scar, Harry's resilience is sorely tested.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, more than any of the four previous novels in the series, is a coming-of-age story. Harry faces the thorny transition into adulthood, when adult heroes are revealed to be fallible, and matters that seemed black-and-white suddenly come out in shades of gray. Gone is the wide-eyed innocent, the whiz kid of Sorcerer's Stone. Here we have an adolescent who's sometimes sullen, often confused (especially about girls), and always self-questioning. Confronting death again, as well as a startling prophecy, Harry ends his year at Hogwarts exhausted and pensive. Readers, on the other hand, will be energized as they enter yet again the long waiting period for the next title in the marvelous, magical series. (Ages 9 and older) - Emilie Coulter

From School Library Journal
Grade 4 Up-Harry has just returned to Hogwarts after a lonely summer. Dumbledore is uncommunicative and most of the students seem to think Harry is either conceited or crazy for insisting that Voldemort is back and as evil as ever. Angry, scared, and unable to confide in his godfather, Sirius, the teen wizard lashes out at his friends and enemies alike. The head of the Ministry of Magic is determined to discredit Dumbledore and undermine his leadership of Hogwarts, and he appoints nasty, pink-cardigan-clad Professor Umbridge as the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher and High Inquisitor of the school, bringing misery upon staff and students alike. This bureaucratic nightmare, added to Harry's certain knowledge that Voldemort is becoming more powerful, creates a desperate, Kafkaesque feeling during Harry's fifth year at Hogwarts. The adults all seem evil, misguided, or simply powerless, so the students must take matters into their own hands. Harry's confusion about his godfather and father, and his apparent rejection by Dumbledore make him question his own motives and the condition of his soul. Also, Harry is now 15, and the hormones are beginning to kick in. There are a lot of secret doings, a little romance, and very little Quidditch or Hagrid (more reasons for Harry's gloom), but the power of this book comes from the young magician's struggles with his emotions and identity. Particularly moving is the unveiling, after a final devastating tragedy, of Dumbledore's very strong feelings of attachment and responsibility toward Harry. Children will enjoy the magic and the Hogwarts mystique, and young adult readers will find a rich and compelling coming-of-age story as well.
Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist
*Starred Review* No, you can't put it down, but believe me, you'll wish you could. This is not an easy book to lug around. Its worldwide hype aside, the fifth installment in Harry Potter's saga should be judged on the usual factors: plot, characters, and the quality of the writing. So how does it fare? One thing emerges quickly: Rowling has not lost her flair as a storyteller or her ability to keep coming up with new gimcracks to astound her readers. But her true skills lie in the way she ages Harry, successfully evolving him from the once downtrodden yet hopeful young boy to this new, gangly teenager showing all the symptoms of adolescence--he is sullen, rude, and contemptuous of adult behavior, especially hypocrisy. This last symptom of the maturing Harry fits especially well into the plot, which finds almost all of the grown-ups in the young wizard's life saying one thing and doing another, especially those at the Ministry of Magic, who discredit Harry in the media to convince the citizenry that Voldemort is not alive. Rowling effectively uses this plot strand as a way of introducing a kind of subtext in which she takes on such issues as governmental lying and the politics of personal destruction, but she makes her points in ways that will be clearly understood by young readers. To fight for truth and justice--and to protect Harry--the Order of the Phoenix has been reconstituted, but young Potter finds squabbling and hypocrisy among even this august group. And in a stunning and bold move, Rowling also allows Harry (and readers) to view an incident from the life of a teenage James Potter that shows him to be an insensitive bully, smashing the iconic view Harry has always had of his father. Are there problems with the book? Sure. Even though children, especially, won't protest, it could be shorter, particularly since Rowling is repetitious with descriptions (Harry is always "angry"; ultimate bureaucrat Doris Umbridge always looks like a toad). But these are quibbles about a rich, worthy effort that meets the very high expectations of a world of readers. Ilene Cooper
Copyright©: American Library Association. All rights reserved

Book Description
I say to you all, once again - in the light of Lord Voldemort's return, we are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided. Lord Voldemort's gift for spreading discord and enmity is very great. We can fight it only by showing an equally strong bond of friendship and trust.

So spoke Albus Dumbledore at the end of Harry Potter’s fourth year at Hogwarts. But as Harry enters his fifth year at wizard school, it seems those bonds have never been more sorely tested. Lord Voldemort’s rise has opened a rift in the wizarding world between those who believe the truth about his return, and those who prefer to believe it’s all madness and lies--just more trouble from Harry Potter.

Add to this a host of other worries for Harry…
• A Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher with a personality like poisoned honey
• A venomous, disgruntled house-elf
• Ron as keeper of the Gryffindor Quidditch team
• And of course, what every student dreads: end-of-term Ordinary Wizarding Level exams

…and you’d know what Harry faces during the day. But at night it’s even worse, because then he dreams of a single door in a silent corridor. And this door is somehow more terrifying than every other nightmare combined.

In the richest installment yet of J. K. Rowling’s seven-part story, Harry Potter confronts the unreliability of the very government of the magical world, and the impotence of the authorities at Hogwarts.

Despite this (or perhaps because of it) Harry finds depth and strength in his friends, beyond what even he knew; boundless loyalty and unbearable sacrifice.

Though thick runs the plot (as well as the spine), readers will race through these pages, and leave Hogwarts, like Harry, wishing only for the next train back.

From the Publisher
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J.K. Rowling, the fifth in the best selling series has been scheduled for release on Saturday, June 21, 2003.

We are thrilled to announce the publication date. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is absolutely superb and will delight all J.K. Rowling's fans. She has written a brilliant and utterly compelling new adventure, which begins with the words:

The hottest day of the summer so far was drawing to a close and a drowsy silence lay over the large, square houses of Privet Drive.... The only person left outside was a teenage boy who was lying flat on his back in a flowerbed outside number four.

Later in the novel, J.K. Rowling writes:
"Dumbledore lowered his hands and surveyed Harry through his half-moon glasses. 'It is time,' he said 'for me to tell you what I should have told you five years ago, Harry. Please sit down. I am going to tell you everything."

- Barbara Marcus, President of Scholastic Children's Books in the United States, and Nigel Newton, Chief Executive of Bloomsbury Publishing in Britain.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is over 255,000 words compared with over 191,000 words in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The new book is 38 chapters long, one more than Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

About the Author
J. K. ROWLING has written fiction since she was a child. Jo enjoyed telling her made-up stories to her younger sister and wrote her first "book" at the age of six--a story about a rabbit called Rabbit! She started writing the Harry Potter series after the idea occurred to her on a train journey where she admits Harry "just strolled into my head fully formed."

JIM DALE is the voice of all the characters in the Harry Potter audio book series. This work has won him the Grammy Award (2000), two Grammy nominations, and two Audio File Earphone Awards.


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter Book 4)

Long before her fourth installment appeared, Rowling warned that it would be darker, and it's true that every exhilaration is equaled by a moment that has us fearing for Harry's life, the book's emotions running as deep as its dangers...

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré

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Editorial Reviews
In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, J.K. Rowling offers up equal parts danger, delight and any number of dragons, house-elves, and death-defying challenges. Now 14, her orphan hero has only two more weeks with his Muggle relatives before returning to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Yet one night a vision harrowing enough to make his lightning-bolt-shaped scar burn has Harry on edge and contacting his godfather-in-hiding, Sirius Black. Happily, the prospect of attending the season's premier sporting event, the Quidditch World Cup, is enough to make Harry momentarily forget that Lord Voldemort and his sinister familiars, the Death Eaters are out for murder.

Readers, we will cast a giant invisibility cloak over any more plot and reveal only that You-Know-Who is very much after Harry and that this year there will be no Quidditch matches between Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin. Instead, Hogwarts will vie with two other magicians' schools, the stylish Beauxbatons and the icy Durmstrang, in a Triwizard Tournament. Those chosen to compete will undergo three supreme tests. Could Harry be one of the lucky contenders?

But Quidditch buffs need not go into mourning: we get our share of this great game at the World Cup. Attempting to go incognito as Muggles, 100,000 witches and wizards converge on a "nice deserted moor." As ever, Rowling magicks up the details that make her world so vivid, and so comic. Several spectators' tents, for instance, are entirely unquotidian. One is a minipalace, complete with live peacocks; another has three floors and multiple turrets. And the sports paraphernalia on offer includes rosettes "squealing the names of the players" as well as "tiny models of Firebolts that really flew, and collectible figures of famous players, which strolled across the palm of your hand, preening themselves." Needless to say, the two teams are decidedly different, down to their mascots. Bulgaria is supported by the beautiful veela, who instantly enchant everyone--including Ireland's supporters--over to their side. Until, that is, thousands of tiny cheerleaders engage in some pyrotechnics of their own: "The leprechauns had risen into the air again, and this time, they formed a giant hand, which was making a very rude sign indeed at the veela across the field."

Long before her fourth installment appeared, Rowling warned that it would be darker, and it's true that every exhilaration is equaled by a moment that has us fearing for Harry's life, the book's emotions running as deep as its dangers. Along the way, though, she conjures up such new characters as Alastor "Mad-Eye" Moody, a Dark Wizard catcher who may or may not be getting paranoid in his old age, and Rita Skeeter, who beetles around Hogwarts in search of stories. (This Daily Prophet scoop artist has a Quick-Quotes Quill that turns even the most innocent assertion into tabloid innuendo.) And at her bedazzling close, Rowling leaves several plot strands open, awaiting book 5. This fan is ready to wager that the author herself is part veela her pen her wand, her commitment to her world complete.

From Publishers Weekly
Even without the unprecedented media attention and popularity her magical series has attracted, it would seem too much to hope that Rowling could sustain the brilliance and wit of her first three novels. Astonishingly, Rowling seems to have the spell-casting powers she assigns her characters: this fourth volume might be her most thrilling yet. The novel opens as a confused Muggle overhears Lord Voldemort and his henchman, Wormtail (the escapee from book three, Azkaban) discussing a murder and plotting more deaths (and invoking Harry Potter's name); clues suggest that Voldemort and Wormtail's location will prove highly significant. From here it takes a while (perhaps slightly too long a while) for Harry and his friends to get back to the Hogwarts school, where Rowling is on surest footing. Headmaster Dumbledore appalls everyone by declaring that Quidditch competition has been canceled for the year; then he makes the exciting announcement that the Triwizard Tournament is to be held after a cessation of many hundred years (it was discontinued, he explains, because the death toll mounted so high). One representative from each of the three largest wizardry schools of Europe (sinister Durmstrang, luxurious Beauxbatons and Hogwarts) are to be chosen by the Goblet of Fire; because of the mortal dangers, Dumbledore casts a spell that allows only students who are at least 17 to drop their names into the Goblet. Thus no one foresees that the Goblet will announce a fourth candidate: Harry. Who has put his name into the Goblet, and how is his participation in the tournament linked, as it surely must be, to Voldemort's newest plot? The details are as ingenious and original as ever, and somehow (for catching readers off-guard must certainly get more difficult with each successive volume) Rowling plants the red herrings, the artful clues and tricky surprises that disarm the most attentive audience. A climax even more spectacular than that of Azkaban will leave readers breathless. The muscle-building heft of this volume notwithstanding, the clamor for book five will begin as soon as readers finish installment four. All ages. (July)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal
Grade 4 Up-Harry is now 14 years old and in his fourth year at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where big changes are afoot. This year, instead of the usual Inter-House Quidditch Cup, a Triwizard Tournament will be held, during which three champions, one from each of three schools of wizardry (Hogwarts, Durmstrang, and Beaux-batons), must complete three challenging magical tasks. The competitors must be at least 17 years old, but the Goblet of Fire that determines the champions mysteriously produces Harry's name, so he becomes an unwilling fourth contestant. Meanwhile, it is obvious to the boy's allies that the evil Voldemort will use the Tournament to get at Harry. This hefty volume is brimming with all of the imagination, humor, and suspense that characterized the first books. So many characters, both new and familiar, are so busily scheming, spying, studying, worrying, fulminating, and suffering from unrequited first love that it is a wonder that Rowling can keep track, much less control, of all the plot lines. She does, though, balancing humor, malevolence, school-day tedium, and shocking revelations with the aplomb of a circus performer. The Triwizard Tournament itself is a bit of a letdown, since Harry is able, with a little help from his friends and even enemies, to perform the tasks easily. This fourth installment, with its deaths, a sinister ending, and an older and more shaken protagonist, surely marks the beginning of a very exciting and serious battle between the forces of light and dark, and Harry's fans will be right there with him.
Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Beliefnet
There are some Christians who view these two activities as a contradiction--who think that Hogwarts is worse than hogwash, and that the magical scenarios of J.K. Rowling's imagination are inherently un-Christian. I would counter that, instead, these books have the potential to be profoundly Christian if readers can see past the medium (magic) to the novels' deeper messages about self-sacrifice, the triumph of good over evil, and the glorious possibility of human redemption. (Beliefnet, July 2000)

The New York Times Book Review, Stephen King
I'm relieved to report that Potter 4--Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire--is every bit as good as Potters 1 through 3.... The most remarkable thing about this book is that Rowling's punning, one-eyebrow-cocked sense of humor goes the distance.

From AudioFile
What's wonderful about the Harry Potter stories is the believability of the world Harry and company inhabit, imagined by J.K. Rowling and fully realized through Jim Dale's portrayal. At first, we were as awed as Harry to learn about the wonders of the magical world; now we're as comfortable with what has become familiar. Dale fosters this expectation, bringing his symphony of voices back to each book even as he's adding more. There's an epic game of Quidditch, brought brilliantly into play as Dale narrates spectators and announcer alike, but overall, this is a darker adventure. As the Tri-Wizard Tournament unfolds, innocence gives way to knowledge and experience, trust is betrayed, and there's as much horror as hilarity. (Some gruesome events near the conclusion might be frightening for younger listeners.) Harry's growing up, and, with this installment, he's firmly on course to his destiny. J.M.D. Winner of AUDIOFILE Earphones Award. © AudioFile 2000, Portland, Maine - Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine - This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Book Description
This is the braille version of the international bestseller. Six volumes in braille. - This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Card catalog description
Fourteen-year-old Harry Potter joins the Weasleys at the Quidditch World Cup, then enters his fourth year at Hogwarts Academy where he is mysteriously entered in an unusual contest that challenges his wizarding skills, friendships and character, amid signs that an old enemy is growing stronger.

From the Publisher
12 1.5-hour cassettes - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

About the Author
J.K. Rowling was a struggling single mother when she wrote the beginning of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, on scraps of paper at a local cafe. But her efforts soon paid off, as she received an unprecedented award from the Scottish Arts Council enabling her to finish the book. Since then, the debut novel has become an international phenomenon, garnering rave reviews and major awards, including the British Book Awards Chidren's Book of the Year and the Smarties Prize. Ms. Rowling lives in Edinburgh with her daughter.

Performer Bio: The New York Times hailed Jim Dale as "The Toast of Broadway" in his title role in the musical Barnum. He has a long list of credits on the stage and in film and was nominated for an Oscar for writing the lyrics for Georgy Girl. - This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter Book 3)

Harry Potter epic continues to gather speed as Harry enters his third year at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry and does battle with the traitor behind his parents' deaths...

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré (Illustrator)

Check price [Hardcover] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca
Check price [Paperback] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca
Check price [Audio CD] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca
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Editorial Reviews
For most children, summer vacation is something to look forward to. But not for our 13-year-old hero, who's forced to spend his summers with an aunt, uncle, and cousin who detest him. The third book in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series catapults into action when the young wizard "accidentally" causes the Dursleys' dreadful visitor Aunt Marge to inflate like a monstrous balloon and drift up to the ceiling. Fearing punishment from Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon (and from officials at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry who strictly forbid students to cast spells in the nonmagic world of Muggles), Harry lunges out into the darkness with his heavy trunk and his owl Hedwig.

As it turns out, Harry isn't punished at all for his errant wizardry. Instead he is mysteriously rescued from his Muggle neighborhood and whisked off in a triple-decker, violently purple bus to spend the remaining weeks of summer in a friendly inn called the Leaky Cauldron. What Harry has to face as he begins his third year at Hogwarts explains why the officials let him off easily. It seems that Sirius Black, an escaped convict from the prison of Azkaban--is on the loose. Not only that, but he's after Harry Potter. But why? And why do the Dementors, the guards hired to protect him, chill Harry's very heart when others are unaffected? Once again, Rowling has created a mystery that will have children and adults cheering, not to mention standing in line for her next book. Fortunately, there are four more in the works. (Ages 9 and older)

From Publishers Weekly
Rowling proves that she has plenty of tricks left up her sleeve in this third Harry Potter adventure, set once again at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. Right before the start of term, a supremely dangerous criminal breaks out of a supposedly impregnable wizards' prison; it will come as no surprise to Potter fans that the villain, a henchman of Harry's old enemy Lord Voldemort, appears to have targeted Harry. In many ways this installment seems to serve a transitional role in the seven-volume series: while many of the adventures are breathlessly relayed, they appear to be laying groundwork for even more exciting adventures to come. The beauty here lies in the genius of Rowling's plotting. Seemingly minor details established in books one and two unfold to take on unforeseen significance, and the finale, while not airtight in its internal logic, is utterly thrilling. Rowling's wit never flags, whether constructing the workings of the wizard world (Just how would a magician be made to stay behind bars?) or tossing off quick jokes (a grandmother wears a hat decorated with a stuffed vulture; the divination classroom looks like a tawdry tea shop). The Potter spell is holding strong.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal
Grade 4-8-Isn't it reassuring that some things just get better and better? Harry is back and in fine form in the third installment of his adventures at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. His summer with the hideous Dursley family is cut short when, during a fit of quite understandable rage, he turns his Aunt Marge into an enormous balloon and then runs away. Soon, it becomes quite apparent that someone is trying to kill him; even after Harry is ensconed in the safety of fall term at Hogwarts, the attacks continue. Myriad subplots involving a new teacher with a secret, Hermione's strangely heavy class schedule, and enmity between Ron's old rat, Scabbers, and Hermione's new cat, Crookshanks, all mesh to create a stunning climax. The pace is nonstop, with thrilling games of Quidditch, terrifying Omens of Death, some skillful time travel, and lots of slimy Slytherins sneaking about causing trouble. This is a fabulously entertaining read that will have Harry Potter fans cheering for more.
Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

The New York Times Book Review, Gregory Maguire
...the heartiest and best of children's literature.

From Kirkus Reviews
The Harry Potter epic (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) continues to gather speed as Harry enters his third year at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry and does battle with the traitor behind his parents' deaths. Besides coping with the usual adversaries - sneering classmate Draco Malfoy, evocatively-named Potions Master Snape - the young wizard-in-training has a new worry with the escape of Sirius Black, murderous minion of archenemy Lord Voldemort, from the magicians' prison of Azkaban. Folding in subplots and vividly conceived magical creatures, Azkaban's guards, known as dementors, are the very last brutes readers would want to meet in a dark alley. With characteristic abandon, Rowling creates a busy backdrop for Harry as she pushes him through a series of terrifying encounters and hard-fought games of Quidditch, on the way to a properly pulse-pounding climax strewn with mistaken identities and revelations about his dead father. The main characters and the continuing story both come along so smartly (and Harry at last shows a glimmer of interest in the opposite sex, a sure sign that the tides of adolescence are lapping at his toes) that the book seems shorter than its page count: have readers clear their calendars if they are fans, or get out of the way if they are not. (Fiction. 10-13) - Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Book Description
This is the braille version of the international bestseller. The Harry Potter epic continues to gather speed as Harry enters his third year at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry and does battle with the traitor behind his parents' deaths. Besides coping with the usual adversaries - sneering classmate Draco Malfoy, evocatively-named Potions Master Snape - the young wizard-in-training has a new worry with the escape of Sirius Black, murderous minion of archenemy Lord Voldemort, from the magicians' prison of Azkaban. Six volumes in braille.

Card catalog description
During his third year at Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry Potter must confront the devious and dangerous wizard responsible for his parents' deaths.

About the Author
J.K. Rowling was a struggling single mother when she wrote the beginning of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, on scraps of paper at a local cafe. But her efforts soon paid off, as she received an unprecedented award from the Scottish Arts Council enabling her to finish the book. Since then, the debut novel has become an international phenomenon, garnering rave reviews and major awards, including the British Book Awards Chidren's Book of the Year and the Smarties Prize. Ms. Rowling lives in Edinburgh with her daughter.

Performer Bio: The New York Times hailed Jim Dale as "The Toast of Broadway" in his title role in the musical Barnum. He has a long list of credits on the stage and in film and was nominated for an Oscar for writing the lyrics for Georgy Girl. - This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter Book 2)

When the Chamber of Secrets is opened again at the Hogswart School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, second-year student Harry Potter finds himself in danger from a dark power that has once more been unleashed on the school...

Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré

Check price [Hardcover] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca
Check price [Paperback] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca
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Check price [Audio Cassette] @ amazon.com / amazon.co.uk / amazon.ca

It's hard to fall in love with an earnest, appealing young hero like Harry Potter and then to watch helplessly as he steps into terrible danger! And in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, the much anticipated sequel to the award-winning Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, he is in terrible danger indeed. As if it's not bad enough that after a long summer with the horrid Dursleys he is thwarted in his attempts to hop the train to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to begin his second year. But when his only transportation option is a magical flying car, it is just his luck to crash into a valuable (but clearly vexed) Whomping Willow. Still, all this seems like a day in the park compared to what happens that fall within the haunted halls of Hogwarts.

Chilling, malevolent voices whisper from the walls only to Harry, and it seems certain that his classmate Draco Malfoy is out to get him. Soon it's not just Harry who is worried about survival, as dreadful things begin to happen at Hogwarts. The mysteriously gleaming, foot-high words on the wall proclaim, "The Chamber of Secrets Has Been Opened. Enemies of the Heir, Beware." But what exactly does it mean? Harry, Hermione, and Ron do everything that is wizardly possible--including risking their own lives--to solve this 50-year-old, seemingly deadly mystery. This deliciously suspenseful novel is every bit as gripping, imaginative, and creepy as the first; familiar student concerns--fierce rivalry, blush-inducing crushes, pedantic professors--seamlessly intertwine with the bizarre, horrific, fantastical, or just plain funny. Once again, Rowling writes with a combination of wit, whimsy, and a touch of the macabre that will leave readers young and old desperate for the next installment. (Ages 9 and older) --Karin Snelson

Audio Book Review
What makes the Harry Potter series so successful? Maybe it's the fact that J.K. Rowling doesn't write children's books, she writes children's stories, more in the tradition of the Brothers Grimm than Dr. Seuss. The exploits of Harry and his friends captivate even the shortest attention spans by engaging the imagination with vivid characters and fast-moving action, instead of trying to merely catch the eye with colorful pictures or pop-up effects. Not surprisingly, the Potter tales sound wonderful read aloud, and adapt to the audio book format extremely well. Broadway actor Jim Dale's impressive vocal range gives each character in the book its own distinctive voice a considerable task, given the pantheon of witches, warlocks, ghosts, ghouls, dwarves, and elves that Harry encounters in his second outing. And thankfully, since the book is read unabridged, no one's favorite character is omitted. Engaging for children without being childish, the audio version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is worthy addition to the deservedly popular series. Check on audio CD edition.

From School Library Journal
Grade 3-8-Fans of the phenomenally popular Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Scholastic, 1998) won't be disappointed when they rejoin Harry, now on break after finishing his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Reluctantly spending the summer with the Dursleys, his mean relatives who fear and detest magic, Harry is soon whisked away by his friends Ron, Fred, and George Weasley, who appear at his window in a flying Ford Anglia to take him away to enjoy the rest of the holidays with their very wizardly family. Things don't go as well, though, when the school term begins. Someone, or something, is (literally) petrifying Hogwarts' residents one by one and leaving threatening messages referring to a Chamber of Secrets and an heir of Slytherin. Somehow, Harry is often around when the attacks happen and he is soon suspected of being the perpetrator. The climax has Harry looking very much like Indiana Jones, battling a giant serpent in the depths of the awesome and terrible Chamber of Secrets. Along with most of the teachers and students introduced in the previous book, Draco Malfoy has returned for his second year and is more despicable than ever. The novel is marked throughout by the same sly and sophisticated humor found in the first book, along with inventive, new, matter-of-fact uses of magic that will once again have readers longing to emulate Harry and his wizard friends.
Susan L. Rogers, Chestnut Hill Academy, PA
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
Grade 3-8-With a year at Hogwarts School under his belt, Harry expects the new term to go smoothly, but a wizard's share of surprises and adventures await the likable lad and his friends. Rowling works her magic and leaves readers begging for more.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist
Given the furor this book has already caused in the U.S., it seems almost redundant to review it; however. . . . Harry Potter's exploits during his second year at Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry completely live up to the bewitching measure of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, a Booklist Editors' Choice, 1998. Harry's summer with the spiteful Dursleys is as dismal as his life with them before Hogwarts, and not only that, a neurotic house-elf suddenly appears to warn him against returning to school. Harry, of course, goes back to school. Once there, he finds himself in danger, as predicted by the house-elf. Strange things are happening. Why can only Harry hear an eerie voice talking about escaping and killing? Who or what has put several students into a petrified state? Harry and his sidekicks, Ron and Hermione, work furiously to get to the bottom of it all. It doesn't help that the rumor spreads that Harry is the long-dreaded heir of Slytherin, one of the school's founders, who purportedly created a Chamber of Secrets that houses a grotesque monster that can only be released by the heir. The mystery, zany humor, sense of a traditional British school (albeit with its share of ghosts, including Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls' bathroom), student rivalry, and eccentric faculty, all surrounded by the magical foundation so necessary in good fantasy, are as expertly crafted here as in the first book. Fans who have been thirsting for this sequel will definitely not feel any disappointment. In fact, once they have read it, they will be lusting for the next. Sally Estes

From Kirkus Reviews
This sequel to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (1998) brings back the doughty young wizard-in-training to face suspicious adults, hostile classmates, fretful ghosts, rambunctious spells, giant spiders, and even an avatar of Lord Voldemort, the evil sorcerer who killed his parents, while saving the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from a deadly, mysterious menace. Ignoring a most peculiar warning, Harry kicks off his second year at Hogwarts after a dreadful summer with his hateful guardians, the Dursleys, and is instantly cast into a whirlwind of magical pranks and misadventures, culminating in a visit to the hidden cavern where his friend Ron's little sister Ginny lies, barely alive, in a trap set by his worst enemy. Surrounded by a grand mix of wise and inept faculty, sneering or loyal peersplus an array of supernatural creatures including Nearly Headless Nick and a huge, serpentine basiliskHarry steadily rises to every challenge, and though he plays but one match of the gloriously chaotic field game Quidditch, he does get in plenty of magic and a bit of swordplay on his way to becoming a hero again. Readers will be irresistibly drawn into Harry's world by GrandPr's comic illustrations and Rowling's expert combination of broad boarding school farce and high fantasy. (Fiction. 11-14) -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Book Description
In one of the most hotly anticipated sequels in memory, J.K. Rowling takes up where she left with Harry's second year at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Old friends and new torments abound, including a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girl's bathroom, an outrageously conceited professor, Gilderoy Lockheart, and a mysterious force that turns Hogwarts students to stone.

Ingram
When the Chamber of Secrets is opened again at the Hogswart School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, second-year student Harry Potter finds himself in danger from a dark power that has once more been unleashed on the school.

Card catalog description
When the Chamber of Secrets is opened again at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, second-year student Harry Potter finds himself in danger from a dark power that has once more been released on the school.

From the Back Cover
"Surely the vilest household in children's literature since the family Roald Dahl created for Matilda. Harry himself is the perfect confused and unassuming hero." --School Library Journal, starred review - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

About the Author
J.K. Rowling was a struggling single mother when she wrote the beginnings of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on scraps of paper at a local cafe. But her efforts were soon rewarded with an award from the Scottish Arts Council enabling her to finish the novel. She has since won numerous awards including the ABBY Award (American Booksellers Award) 1999. - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.


Harry Potter & the Sorcerers Stone (Harry Potter Book 1)

Harry Potter is raised by reluctant parents, Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon, an odious couple who would be right at home in a Roald Dahl novel. Things go from awful to hideous for Harry until, with the approach of his eleventh birthday, mysterious letters begin arriving addressed to him...

Harry Potter & the Sorcerers Stone

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews
Say you've spent the first 10 years of your life sleeping under the stairs of a family who loathes you. Then, in an absurd, magical twist of fate you find yourself surrounded by wizards, a caged snowy owl, a phoenix-feather wand, and jellybeans that come in every flavor, including strawberry, curry, grass, and sardine. Not only that, but you discover that you are a wizard yourself! This is exactly what happens to young Harry Potter in J.K. Rowling's enchanting, funny debut novel, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. In the nonmagic human world--the world of "Muggles"--Harry is a nobody, treated like dirt by the aunt and uncle who begrudgingly inherited him when his parents were killed by the evil Voldemort. But in the world of wizards, small, skinny Harry is famous as a survivor of the wizard who tried to kill him. He is left only with a lightning-bolt scar on his forehead, curiously refined sensibilities, and a host of mysterious powers to remind him that he's quite, yes, altogether different from his aunt, uncle, and spoiled, piglike cousin Dudley.

A mysterious letter, delivered by the friendly giant Hagrid, wrenches Harry from his dreary, Muggle-ridden existence: "We are pleased to inform you that you have been accepted at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry." Of course, Uncle Vernon yells most unpleasantly, "I AM NOT PAYING FOR SOME CRACKPOT OLD FOOL TO TEACH HIM MAGIC TRICKS!" Soon enough, however, Harry finds himself at Hogwarts with his owl Hedwig... and that's where the real adventure--humorous, haunting, and suspenseful--begins. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, first published in England as Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, continues to win major awards in England. So far it has won the National Book Award, the Smarties Prize, the Children's Book Award, and is short-listed for the Carnegie Medal, the U.K. version of the Newbery Medal. This magical, gripping, brilliant book--a future classic to be sure--will leave kids clamoring for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. (Ages 8 to 13) --Karin Snelson

Amazon.com Audiobook Review
The amazing popularity of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone means that now even Muggles know about the Leaky Cauldron, Diagon Alley, and Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Whether or not you've read about Harry, this unabridged audiobook brings his world to life. Reader Jim Dale brings an excellent range of voices to the characters, from well-meaning Hermione's soft, earnest voice to Malfoy's nasal droning; from Professor McGonagall's crisp brogue to Hagrid's broad Somerset accent; and from snarling Mr. Filch to p-p-poor, st-tuttering P-Professor Quirrel. Some of the characterizations are peculiar--why do the centaurs have Welsh accents?--but that's a small price to pay to hear one of the myriad ways to sing the Hogwarts School song. Harry Potter fans of all ages--Muggle or not--will enjoy curling up with a few chocolate frogs, a box of Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans ("Alas! Ear wax!"), and this marvelous, magical audiobook. (Running time: 8 hours, 6 cassettes) - Sunny Delaney - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

From Publishers Weekly
Readers are in for a delightful romp with this award-winning debut from a British author who dances in the footsteps of P.L. Travers and Roald Dahl. As the story opens, mysterious goings-on ruffle the self-satisfied suburban world of the Dursleys, culminating in a trio of strangers depositing the Dursleys' infant nephew Harry in a basket on their doorstep. After 11 years of disregard and neglect at the hands of his aunt, uncle and their swinish son Dudley, Harry suddenly receives a visit from a giant named Hagrid, who informs Harry that his mother and father were a witch and a wizard, and that he is to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry himself. Most surprising of all, Harry is a legend in the witch world for having survived an attack by the evil sorcerer Voldemort, who killed his parents and left Harry with a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead. And so the fun begins, with Harry going off to boarding school like a typical English kid?only his supplies include a message-carrying owl and a magic wand. There is enchantment, suspense and danger galore (as well as enough creepy creatures to satisfy the most bogeymen-loving readers, and even a magical game of soccerlike Quidditch to entertain sports fans) as Harry and his friends Ron and Hermione plumb the secrets of the forbidden third floor at Hogwarts to battle evil and unravel the mystery behind Harry's scar. Rowling leaves the door wide open for a sequel; bedazzled readers will surely clamor for one. Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7-Harry Potter has spent 11 long years living with his aunt, uncle, and cousin, surely the vilest household in children's literature since the family Roald Dahl created for Matilda (Viking, 1988). But like Matilda, Harry is a very special child; in fact, he is the only surviving member of a powerful magical family. His parents were killed by the evil Voldemort, who then mysteriously vanished, and the boy grew up completely ignorant of his own powers, until he received notification of his acceptance at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Once there, Harry's life changes dramatically. Hogwarts is exactly like a traditional British boarding school, except that the professors are all wizards and witches, ghosts roam the halls, and the surrounding woods are inhabited by unicorns and centaurs. There he makes good friends and terrible enemies. However, evil is lurking at the very heart of Hogwarts, and Harry and his friends must finally face the malevolent and powerful Voldemort, who is intent on taking over the world. The delight of this book lies in the juxtaposition of the world of Muggles (ordinary humans) with the world of magic. A whole host of unique characters inhabits this world, from the absentminded Head Wizard Dumbledore to the sly and supercilious student Draco Malfoy to the loyal but not too bright Hagrid. Harry himself is the perfect confused and unassuming hero, whom trouble follows like a wizard's familiar. After reading this entrancing fantasy, readers will be convinced that they, too, could take the train to Hogwarts School, if only they could find Platform Nine and Three Quarters at the King's Cross Station.
Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

The New York Times Book Review, Michael Winerip
...funny, moving and impressive.... Like Harry Potter, [J.K. Rowling] has soared beyond her modest Muggle surroundings to achieve something quite special.

The Washington Post Book World, Michael Dirda
Obviously, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone should make any modern 11-year-old a very happy reader. The novel moves quickly, packs in everything from a boa constrictor that winks to a melancholy Zen-spouting centaur to an owl postal system, and ends with a scary surprise.

From AudioFile
If you haven't heard of Harry Potter then you haven't turned on your TV or radio or opened a newspaper in the last few months. For the uninitiated, Harry is a young orphan who is living with his nasty relatives when he's summoned to claim his magical heritage by attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. What could be better (or more satisfying to children) than studying, not English and chemistry, but Potions and Defense-Against-the-Dark-Arts? Jim Dale, with his fully voiced reading, brings the world of wizards to life in ways unimagined even by those who have read and re-read the book. The accents are sure, the inflections perfectly suit the characters, and some of Rowling's particularly inventive bits, like the game of Quidditch, become clearer. Sometimes poignant, often funny, Dale's interpretation of this enchanted other world is the consummate family-listening experience. S.G. Winner of AUDIOFILE Earphones Award. (c) AudioFile, Portland, Maine - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

From Booklist
Gr. 4^-7. Orphaned in infancy, Harry Potter is raised by reluctant parents, Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon, an odious couple who would be right at home in a Roald Dahl novel. Things go from awful to hideous for Harry until, with the approach of his eleventh birthday, mysterious letters begin arriving addressed to him! His aunt and uncle manage to intercept these until a giant named Hagrid delivers one in person, and to his astonishment, Harry learns that he is a wizard and has been accepted (without even applying) as a student at Hogworts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. There's even more startling news: it turns out that his parents were killed by an evil wizard so powerful that everyone is afraid to so much as utter his name, Voldemort. Somehow, though, Harry survived Voldemort's attempt to kill him, too, though it has left him with a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead and enormous celebrity in the world of magic, because Voldemort vanished following his failure. But is he gone for good? What is hidden on the third floor of Hogworts Castle? And who is the Man with Two Faces? Rowling's first novel, which has won numerous prizes in England, is a brilliantly imagined and beautifully written fantasy that incorporates elements of traditional British school stories without once violating the magical underpinnings of the plot. In fact, Rowling's wonderful ability to put a fantastic spin on sports, student rivalry, and eccentric faculty contributes to the humor, charm, and, well, delight of her utterly captivating story. Michael Cart

From Kirkus Reviews
In a rousing first novel, already an award-winner in England, Harry is just a baby when his magical parents are done in by Voldemort, a wizard so dastardly other wizards are scared to mention his name. So Harry is brought up by his mean Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia Dursley, and picked on by his horrid cousin Dudley. He knows nothing about his magical birthright until ten years later, when he learns he's to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Hogwarts is a lot like English boarding school, except that instead of classes in math and grammar, the curriculum features courses in Transfiguration, Herbology, and Defense Against the Dark Arts. Harry becomes the star player of Quidditch, a sort of mid-air ball game. With the help of his new friends Ron and Hermione, Harry solves a mystery involving a sorcerer's stone that ultimately takes him to the evil Voldemort. This hugely enjoyable fantasy is filled with imaginative details, from oddly flavored jelly beans to dragons' eggs hatched on the hearth. It's slanted toward action-oriented readers, who will find that Briticisms meld with all the other wonders of magic school. (Fiction. 10-14) - Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Book Description
Read by Jim Dale
8 hours 17 minutes, 6 cassettes

Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is. That's because he's being raised by his miserable aunt and uncle who are terrified Harry will learn that he's really a wizard, just as his parents were. But everything changes when Harry is summoned to attend an infamous school for wizards, and he begins to discover some clues about his illustrious birthright. From the surprising way he is greeted by a lovable giant, to the unique curriculum and colorful faculty at his unusual school, Harry finds himself drawn deep inside a mystical world he never knew existed and closer to his own noble destiny. - This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

Ingram
What did Harry Potter know about magic? He was stuck with the decidedly un-magical Dursleys, who hated him. He slept in a closet and ate their leftovers. But an owl messenger changes all that, with an invitation to attend the Hogwarts School for Wizards and Witches, where it turns out Harry is already famous.. . . Full color.

Card catalog description
Rescued from the outrageous neglect of his aunt and uncle, a young boy with a great destiny proves his worth while attending Hogwarts School for Witchraft and Wizardry.

About the Author
J.K. Rowling was a struggling single mother when she wrote the beginnings of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on scraps of paper at a local cafe. But her efforts were soon rewarded with an award from the Scottish Arts Council enabling her to finish the novel. She has since won numerous awards including the ABBY Award (American Booksellers Award) 1999. - This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


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