Okay, for some slightly more serious discussion, follow the cut, but beware, for here be spoilers...
Okay, so, I won't go into huge detail, cause... well, read the book for yourself. Overall, I felt the beginning was way too slow, I mean, it was the seventh chapter before Harry got to Hogwarts. This was of course more than made up for by the ending, but still. I'd place this book somewhere behind OotP and ahead of CoS in my list of favorites. I mean, Sirius's death actually made me cry, something this book didn't accomplish, not that many do. Anyway, for specifics-
*first, wha? the Remus/Tonks shippers were right? Gotta admit I was a little surprised at that one, although I know there are a lot of happy wolfy lovers out there. :) I mean, I seriously never thought that would happen. Ever. I could almost have believed Harry/Tonks would have had more of a chance than R/T, but you know, hey, JK is master, I bow to her supreme and utter mugwumpishness and say that whatever she thinks is what I think. Cute couple, I will admit, especially with Tonks doing all the copying of Remus's traits and stuff. squerk. The Harry/Ginny was to be expected as was the Ron/Hermione. I mean, those have both basically been charted out since book 1. I did appreciate no false 'happy ending' that would have gone something like "Ginny, with you at my side, I can face anything" or something like that. Harry's finally learning to stand on his own two feet.
*next, allow me to gloat that Draco isn't the ultimate root of all evil. Just proves that not all Slytherins have a singleminded urge to kill, maim, destroy, etc. Granted, though, Snape pretty easily destroyed any gain we Slytherins may have made, and then some. So I guess I won't actually be gloating too much, except to say that I always knew Draco wasn't a cold-blooded killer, whatever the rest of the world may have thought. And if people would just LISTEN to Harry more often...
*All right, really, Half-Blood Prince...did anyone see this coming? I mean, as soon as we connected the Prince with the potion's book, I was like, okay, Snape, but before that... I think that may have been one of the few names NOT getting tossed around wildly. Among all the Hagrid and Remus and Voldemort/Harry guesses, were we all truly blinded that JK had never actually SAID that Snape was a pureblood? I know I missed it somewhere. Just one of those assumptions, I guess, where the DE's are concerned, that they're all purebloods. Funny how that works, what with Tom being a half-blood and all. (Note to self, continue to call Voldy 'Tom' just to piss him off)
*okay...Dumbledore... WTF?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!! I expected the Twins, maybe Hagrid, even one of the other profs or Remus, but this was one fandom prediction I sincerely hoped was not going to be right and... well, there it is. Not gonna say any more, except... funny thought of the day, the first thing in my mind was- 'maybe Dumbledore knew he was going to die anyway from the poison, so he asked Sev to kill him rather than make Draco do it.' Yes, I know that's not true, but I'm just having a hard time 1)thinking of Dumbledore as ever BEGGING anyone for anything and 2)believing that he could be that wrong, that everyone could be that wrong...it's just...sigh, he had us all fooled.
Okay, got that out of my system, for now anyway. Don't think anyone will actually read it, but I had to get it out of my system or I was gonna pop. The sis's reading it now, so I'll be able to talk about it in a few weeks or so.
Went to the release party, it was much fun. Sis went with me. Made a wand, bought the new Rob Thomas CD. :) Okay, that last wasn't HP related, but the sis wanted "this is how a heart breaks" which is her favorite song ever right now because they played it during the NBA finals. Got there about 10:30, number 167 in the queue for books, that meant we were in the third group called up, got the book about 12:30. They were seriously booking it behind the counter, no pun intended. Or maybe just a small one. ;) Ooh, almost forgot, the excitement started before we even got to Barnes & Noble. I get the green light and start to turn at this intersection when this idiot on a cell phone pulls out into the intersection against the light and almost t-bones me. grrr, I hate people. Anyway, survived to get the book, get home, and read it in about 20 hours, 6 of which were spent sleeping. So that's a new record for me, HP book-wise. The next fastest was book 5 in about 3 days. Wanna know more, read the spoilers above.
Anything else? hmm... vacation was fun. In St. Louis as the displaced rain from Hurricane Dennis washed in. Got there Sat the 8th, nice sunny day, walked around a bit then headed back to the hotel room. it was late. Checked the weather, and decided to completely rearrange our carefully laid out plans for the week due to the weather. Went to Six Flags on Sun, nice day for that. Got sick off some pretty gross pizza, though, which was sad for me. Decided park was nice, but not all that. Mon spent the day around St. Louis. Did the arch, a river boat tour, ate at Hard Rock Cafe, and (what was really cool) took a tour of the Anheuser-Busch Brewery, hee, that was awesome. Yes, that means we saw the horsies, too. :D You can imagine my excitement. I was, sadly, unable to enjoy the most famous part of the tour- the hospitality room- as I don't turn 21 for about another 8 months. Tues was the zoo, which was fun. Animals are cute and fluffy. Except the non-fluffy ones, and the occasional ones that aren't cute. Rained most of the day, but it was really just mist/showers that were easily avoided with an umbrella. Wed was a nice day, a couple cloud bursts but that was about it. Went to Grant's farm, a zoo-like park...thingy...owned, like everything else in St. Louis, by Anheuser-Busch. Again, more horsies. :) Also went to some caves which were very fun, but cold, and went on another river cruise. Thursday we headed home. And that was that. A good time was had by all.
That's all I can think of right now. If anyone else has read the sixth book, drop me a line. I'm gonna go crazy if I don't get to talk to someone about it. sigh. guess I'll be haunting the fandom message boards for a while. It's like freakin' addiction or something. I think I've weaned myself off, then I get another fix and I'm like a junky looking for more. Just hurry up with the final installment, JK. That's all I'm saying.