Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – Hot or Not?

by David Jack

Finally, the wait is over and the most eagerly anticipated book in publishing history has arrived. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which is roughly the size and weight of a house brick, has just broke all sales records both in the UK and the US. It had the largest print run in history, and combined sales of the UK and US on the first day of release topped seven million sales. But is this book that good? Does is deserve the huge security which surrounded the book with the weeks leading up to the release? Is it as good as the other four Harry Potter books?

When the book arrived at my house on the early afternoon of June 21st, I was really exited. I wanted to devour this book whole, but at the same time take it slowly for I knew that it may be another three years before Book 6 in the series will be released. I tried to take as long as possible to read the book, but by Thursday morning I had finished reading it.

The feeling that I had when I put the book down was a weird one. It was one that I had really felt before, one that I didn’t particulary like. I was experiencing a hollow, empty type of feeling. I felt as if the book answered none of my questions that I had before I started the book, such as what were the significance of Lily’s eyes; but then I realised that Lily’s eyes weren’t even a question to begin with– they were a rumour. For the past two years I had been on lots of fan sites ranging from thesnitch.co.uk to iharrypotter.net, and I had read every rumour under the sun. How could I expect all of these things to happen? The simple answer was that I couldn’t!

However, I still felt like I had an empty, hollow feeling inside of me. How would I get rid of it? After three days of feeling life this, I decided to re-read Book 5. As I re-read it, I realised that we had, in fact learned a lot. Of course we had! We have learned more in this book than perhaps any other. We have learned that Harry’s father was no saint like Harry had believed for the past five years, we’ve learned that Neville can do amazingly well when he tries and of course, the biggy, we have learned that the wars with Voldemort HAVE to end one way or the other. Either Harry must die or Voldemort must die because “neither can live while the other survives.”

Once I had finished Book 5 for the first time, I thought that Order of the Phoenix was good, but not brilliant ranking somewhere in the middle of my favorites – not as good as Goblet or Azkaban but better than Chamber and Stone. Now, having re-read it I believe that it is as good or if not, better than Goblet and certainly better thanAzkaban. So if you’ve read the book once and didn’t think much of it then, re-read it because, trust me, it does get better!