Monday, July 16, 2007

Muggle blog VII

I just finished the sixth book and am caught up and indescribably awaiting the end of work Saturday.

Upon this second reading of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, I am now leaning toward Snape being bad, maybe 60 percent. Ironically, Shelley and I agreed that Alan Rickman played Snape as good in Order of the Phoenix (at least I think this was a discussion I had with her, apologies if it was someone else), but to me he seemed bad in the book.

I go to the description of the look on Snape's face as he used the killing curse: "Snape gazed a moment at Dumbledore, and there was revulsion and hatred etched in the harsh lines of his face."

After that Dumbledore says: "Severus ... please ..."

It's the words "revulsion and hatred etched in the harsh lines" that set me off. Rowling is a damend good writer with a great editor in this book, which I agree with many critics is the best purely written book. Words like "etched" as a verb are very powerful. Though I was once woefully ignorant of the painstaking efforts of great word selection, I get it now. If he's good why such "hatred?"

There were no mega reveals in this book and to me of all the books, this one perhaps had the least tidily concluded story arc. This book was very much a to be continued. But that's OK. When one finishes it a second time a week before the next book that works out.

It seems obvious that in Book 7 we've got to get the full accounting of why Dumbledore trusted Snape implicitly, even though no one else in the Order of the Phoenix knew (McGonagall notes that after Dumbledore dies). But add up how convincing he was in explaining to Bellatrix why he didn't "act sooner" plus his taking the unbreakable vow plus the description of the hatred and it seems like a tough one now to believe he's good. I was so sure before that he would be ultimately good, but now maybe 55 percent bad. Yeah, that's already 5 percent less than when I started this entry. And in Book 5 he's clearly a good guy it seems.

Oddly, I was not sad in the way I felt during parts of Azkaban, Goblet and Phoenix. No tears. But I think that's because Dumbledore's death was still shocking. Like I'm literally kind of numb inside. Wow.

More soon, because with Horcruxes, Snape's undiscovered past, Neville, the remaining professors, R.A.B., Godric's Hollow and what Harry might find there, Luna, the Weasleys and which might die, there remains much to discuss. It's funny how much a book can affect someone. I was ready to type in a snarky joke about the Weasley and which one might die, but like honestly I felt like it would be rude to be so callous toward such honorable people, even if they're fictional. And one more thing, how together will Ron and Hermione get?

Will Harry return to school? And what will Malfoy's fate ultimately be? It seems to me that Snape has a much better chance of being truly evil than Malfoy, who seemed exposed as something of a hack in this book. Perhaps Moaning Myrtle's confessional toilet chats with Malfoy will reveal something in Book 7?

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