Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter Series #6)
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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter Series #6)

4.7 4032
by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré
     
 

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The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Ron scans the obituary pages of the Daily Prophet, looking for familiar names. Dumbledore is absent from Hogwarts for long stretches of time, and the Order of the Phoenix has already suffered losses.

And yet...

As in all wars, life goes on. Sixth-year students learn to

Overview

The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Ron scans the obituary pages of the Daily Prophet, looking for familiar names. Dumbledore is absent from Hogwarts for long stretches of time, and the Order of the Phoenix has already suffered losses.

And yet...

As in all wars, life goes on. Sixth-year students learn to Apparate -- and lose a few eyebrows in the process. The Weasley twins expand their business. Teenagers flirt and fight and fall in love. Classes are never straightforward, though Harry receives some extraordinary help from the mysterious Half-Blood Prince.

So it's the home front that takes center stage in the multilayered sixth installment of the story of Harry Potter. Here at Hogwarts, Harry will search for the full and complex story of the boy who became Lord Voldemort -- and thereby find what may be his only vulnerability.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
After months of frenzied anticipation and wild speculation about the identity of the Half-Blood Prince, the numerous bombshells and incredible plot twists in the sixth, ever-darkening installment of J. K. Rowling's bestselling Harry Potter saga will leave readers as shocked and stunned as they are utterly satisfied.

As the novel begins, a "grim mood" has fallen over the country. The minions of Lord Voldemort (a.k.a. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named) continue to grow as his evil spreads. The Ministry of Magic has stepped up security everywhere, and as Harry enters his sixth year at Hogwarts, he begins to see himself -- and everyone around him -- in a different, more discerning, light. With rumors swirling about Harry being the prophesied "Chosen One," he begins taking private lessons from Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore. As Dumbledore prepares Harry for his destined clash with Voldemort by revealing jaw-dropping insights into the Dark Lord's past -- who his parents were, what happened after he left Hogwarts, and more -- Harry also struggles to uncover the identity of the Half-Blood Prince, the past owner of a potions textbook he now possesses that is filled with ingenious, potentially deadly, spells. But Harry's life is suddenly changed forever when someone close to him is heinously murdered right before his eyes....

With only one book to go before the series' projected conclusion, Rowling masterfully sets the stage for what will surely be an epic battle to end all battles. The chess pieces are all in place for a magic-powered endgame that will be as thrilling as it is bittersweet. Paul Goat Allen

Jabari Asim
The journey from child to adult is tough enough for ordinary mortals, but the trip has been unusually hazardous for the world-famous wizard-in-training. Rowling shepherds her hero's arduous trek to maturity with her customary grace and good humor, though she has infused her story with more bone-cracking and blood-spattering than may be tolerable for many of the young readers who have followed Harry's adventures so far.
— The Washington Post
Michiko Kakutani
… the darkest and most unsettling installment yet … It is a novel that pulls together dozens of plot strands from previous volumes, underscoring how cleverly and carefully J. K. Rowling has assembled this giant jigsaw puzzle of an epic … the achievement of the Potter books is the same as that of the great classics of children's literature, from the Oz novels to The Lord of the Rings: the creation of a richly imagined and utterly singular world, as detailed, as improbable and as mortal as our own.
— The New York Times
Liesl Schillinger
These newest 652 pages - far darker than those that preceded them - are leavened with humor, romance and snappy dialogue, and freighted with secrets, deepening bonds, betrayals and brutal lessons, many of them coming from the sinister, Harry-hating Severus Snape, master of the dark arts. Up to now, Harry, while overcoming any number of harrowing trials, has managed to retain a trusting nature; but at 16, worsening circumstances force him to realize that even though he regards himself as ''Dumbledore's man through and through,'' he must also be his own man.
— The New York Times Sunday Book Review
Publishers Weekly
Dale gets his A game on once again, returning to the wizarding realm where his previous visits have earned him accolades that include a Grammy. By this sixth installment, Dale has created well over 130 different voices, shifting easily from his own slightly Americanized British accent to distinctive Scottish, French and regional English takes. In addition to keeping stars Harry, Hermione, Ron, Dumbledore and Hagrid firmly identifiable and in the fore this time, he serves up a delightful spin on Professor Horace Slughorn, the new teacher at Hogwarts. Slughorn's smarmy tone and Dale's guttural delivery are a winning and memorable combo. As Harry's saga darkens and his adventures become more perilous, Dale also gets to explore deeply villainous voices-with evil hisses and sharp edges-more than ever (but we won't tell you whose). Ages 9-up. (July) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Book 6 in the Harry Potter series clearly has been written for a somewhat older audience. For example, instead of beginning with Harry unhappily ensconced at the home of his aunt and uncle, the Dursleys, as was the case in earlier volumes, the first two chapters of this book set the stage for the continuation of the story by relating recent events in the struggle between good and evil affecting both the Ministry of Magic and the supporters of Lord Voldemort. In Chapter 3, Harry is rescued by Albus Dumbledore after a mere fortnight of boredom during his summer holiday at the Dursleys, which leads to a visit to the Burrow, the new home of the Order of the Phoenix. As sixth-year students at Hogwarts, Harry and his pals Ron and Hermione learn to apparate, Harry becomes captain of the Gryffindor Quidditch team, and teenage hormones begin to kick in with their usual side effects. Flashbacks, presented in the form of visits via the Pensive to old memories collected by Dumbledore, provide Harry with more information about the young wizard who eventually became Lord Voldemort. This leads to a spine-tingling search for one of the seven Horcruxes created by Voldemort to ensure his immortality, and which sets the stage for the concluding volume of the series. All in all, a great read. Fans of Harry Potter will not be disappointed. 2005, Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic, Ages 10 to adult.
—Charles Wyman
School Library Journal
Gr 5 Up-Opening just a few weeks after the previous book left off, the penultimate entry in the series is, as the author foretold, the darkest and most unsettling yet. The deeds of Voldemort's Death Eaters are spreading even to the Muggle world, which is enshrouded in a mist caused by Dementors draining hope and happiness. Harry, turning 16, leaves for Hogwarts with the promise of private lessons with Dumbledore. No longer a fearful boy living under the stairs, he is clearly a leader and increasingly isolated as rumors spread that he is the "Chosen One," the only individual capable of defeating Voldemort. Two attempts on students' lives, Harry's conviction that Draco Malfoy has become a Death Eater, and Snape's usual slimy behavior add to the increasing tension. Yet through it all, Harry and his friends are typical teens, sharing homework and messy rooms, rushing to classes and sports practices, and flirting. Ron and Hermione realize their attraction, as do Harry and Ginny. Dozens of plot strands are pulled together as the author positions Harry for the final book. Much information is cleverly conveyed through Dumbledore's use of a Pensieve, a device that allows bottled memories to be shared by Harry and his beloved professor as they apparate to various locations that help explain Voldemort's past. The ending is heart wrenching. Once again, Rowling capably blends literature, mythology, folklore, and religion into a delectable stew. This sixth book may be darker and more difficult, but Potter fans will devour it and begin the long and bittersweet wait for the final installment.-Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher

July 25, 2005
'Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince': The Kirkus Review
Review Date: JULY 25, 2005
Category: NONE
Classification: ONLINE EXCLUSIVE
Revealed at last–now that the fog of whipped-up anticipation, secrecy, hints, threats, news stories of legal action, wild speculation, midnight-oil-burning and marketing smoke is thinning–the penultimate Potter sequel delivers, as have its predecessors, a tale worth the wait. Readers who felt a bit hammered by the adolescent rage coloring Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2003) will be relieved to find that Rowling has returned to the lighter tone of earlier episodes, though properly portentous events do swirl in the background, and, as promised: There Is a Death.

Harry enters his sixth year at Hogwarts knowing that he has a pivotal role to play in the now-open war against Voldemort, sure that Draco Malfoy is up to something, and more than a little conflicted by his attraction to Ginny Weasley, sidekick Ron's suddenly not-so-little sister. Harry's relationship to Dumbledore is entering a new phase, too, as under the kindly old wizard's direct guidance, he begins taking trips through a series of magically preserved memories to explore his archenemy's parentage and character.

Meanwhile, Harry's glee at getting a leg up in Potions class thanks to a heavily annotated old textbook that once belonged to a mysterious “Half-Blood Prince” rivals his discomfort at being caught between Ron and Hermione, who are going through a rocky patch, and the horror of discovering that his new Defense Against the Dark Arts instructor is none other than hated, hateful Severus Snape. How could Dumbledore possibly insist, as he repeatedly does, that Snape is a trustworthy ally?

While charting teenage infatuations and friendships with a wry wit that occasionally tumbles into outright merriment, Rowling tucks in several revelations (notably, the secret to Voldemort's seeming immortality), adds a dash of sympathy for Malfoy (of all people!), who does indeed turn out to be part of an ugly scheme, and further develops Snape's role as a pivotal character. Then, after a heartrending test of Harry's loyalty to Dumbledore, Rowling propels the plot to a climax that is–thanks to artful pre-pub preparation–tragic, but not uncomfortably shocking. This newest excursion into the Potterverse will leave readers pleased, amused, excited, scared, infuriated, delighted, sad, surprised, thoughtful–and likely wondering where Voldemort has got to, since he appears only in flashbacks. There's no doubt, however, that he'll figure prominently in what promises to be a spectacular finish.

SLJ 8-05
ROWLING, J. K. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. illus. by Mary GrandPré. 672p. Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Bks. 2005. Tr $29.99. ISBN 0-439-78454-9; PLB $34.99. ISBN 0-439-78677-0. LC 2005921149.
Gr 5 Up–Opening just a few weeks after the previous book left off, the penultimate entry in the series is, as the author foretold, the darkest and most unsettling yet. The deeds of Voldemort's Death Eaters are spreading even to the Muggle world, which is enshrouded in a mist caused by Dementors draining hope and happiness. Harry, turning 16, leaves for Hogwarts with the promise of private lessons with Dumbledore. No longer a fearful boy living under the stairs, he is clearly a leader and increasingly isolated as rumors spread that he is the “Chosen One,” the only individual capable of defeating Voldemort. Two attempts on students' lives, Harry's conviction that Draco Malfoy has become a Death Eater, and Snape's usual slimy behavior add to the increasing tension. Yet through it all, Harry and his friends are typical teens, sharing homework and messy rooms, rushing to classes and sports practices, and flirting. Ron and Hermione realize their attraction, as do Harry and Ginny. Dozens of plot strands are p

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780439785969
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
07/25/2006
Series:
Harry Potter Series , #6
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
672
Sales rank:
769
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 7.63(h) x 1.30(d)
Lexile:
1030L (what's this?)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

J. K. Rowling is the author of six celebrated novels in the Harry Potter sequence. Her most recent book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, was named an ALA Notable Book and recognized with prizes as diverse as an Anthony Award for Best Young Adult Mystery and a Best Science Fiction/Fantasy Novel Award from Disney Adventures magazine. She has also been named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. Ms. Rowling lives in Scotland with her family.

Jim Dale is the voice of all the characters in the Harry Potter audiobook series. This work has won him a Grammy® Award (2000), three Grammy nominations and three Audie Awards. A Member of the Order of the British Empire, Mr. Dale has also won a Tony Award®, four Drama Desk Awards and an Academy Award® nomination. Visit Jim at www.jim-dale.com.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Perthshire, Scotland
Date of Birth:
July 31, 1965
Place of Birth:
Chipping Sodbury near Bristol, England
Education:
Exeter University
Website:
http://www.jkrowling.com

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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince 4.7 out of 5 based on 7 ratings. 4032 reviews.
Balina More than 1 year ago
The book is definitely a must read. I have enjoyed reading all the H.P. books from start to finish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, by J.K. Rowling, is another incredible account on the life of Harry Potter. Entering his sixth year at the acclaimed school of witchcraft and wizardry, Hogwarts, Harry is faced with an even tougher set of tasks than ever before. Throughout the year, Dumbeldore calls upon him occasionally for some "private lessons", but Harry soon finds out that these lessons are not for practicing his magic. No, Dumbeldore calls upon Harry to once again delve into the Pensieve, and explore the many memories people have of a younger Tom Marvolo Riddle, or Lord Voldemort. The reason Dumbeldore is doing this is because he believes he has found the secret to Voldemort's power: Horcruxes, and the only way they will be able to find the horcruxes is to find objects that Voldemort was very attached to. Horcruxes are a very dangerous and dark type of magic in which one slices up his/her soul and hides it in objects, so even when they die, they aren't really dead until ALL of their soul is destroyed. Dumbeldore believes that he has found one of Voldemort's horcruxes and wants Harry to come and help him destroy it. I give this book 5out of 5 stars because I believe this is a book in which many teenagers and even adults can relate. Rowling, including the other five books in the series, creates an imaginative world, but that relates to society today, which is why they are all so popular. Rowling assembles her characters so that many different types of children can relate to them. For example, Ron is struggling with his hormones and is continually "snogging" with his newfound girlfriend Lavender, but isn't really sure about the whole relationship thing. Now many teenage boys (or girls) can definitely relate to this! Most boys aren't sure what the heck they feel and go with their first instinct: to get a girlfriend no matter what. This relation to the real world, and many others, is part of the reason why I love these books and why so many others do as well. The last reason (but not the only reasons) I give this book 5 out of 5 stars is because of the intense suspense and just how well the book is written. Just like every other Harry Potter, every single page leaves you begging you for more. Personally, I'd just read these books for hours on end if I could. Rowling ends every chapter in a way that you can't just put it down and stop reading for the day: you HAVE to keep reading. The plot in this Harry Potter is incredibly thought out, super exciting, but surprisingly simple, which I think is why many people read it so often. It is not difficult to understand at all but the imagination Rowling put into writing is (and all the others) is astonishing. In conclusion, I give this book 5 out of 5 stars and would recommend it to anyone who is looking for an amazing book to read. This is my favorite series of books EVER and this is my 2nd favorite one in the series, next to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is an awesome book!! I cried at some parts and Laughed out loud at others!! YOU MUST READ THE BOOKS!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg, i love these books and im 10 i just love harry potter so much i know alot of the chsractors:Harry potter, Hermione Granger, Ronald Weasley, Fred Weasly, Gearge Weasly, Ginny Weasly,Nevill longbottom, Luna Lovegood, proffeser McGonagall, Severaus Snape, Rebius Hagrid,Oliver Wood, Percey Weasly. I mean a little impressive for a 10 year old right! p.s. I LOVE HARRY POTTER IF I RATED IT IT WOULD BE OVER 600,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was far by the best book from J.K Rowlings series so far. It is quiet the book. If you are a harry poter nut like I you will really want to read this book. When i got to the end i wanted more, so much more. I have reread the book 15 times since it came out. this book is outstounding and it easily takes the 5 stars. I really wish that the book was longer,But i still enjoyed it.
wattay More than 1 year ago
Book is better than movie loved it
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've just finished reading the 6th book. I must say this has to be the best installment so far. I laughed and I cried. I feel this is a book for all ages. I can't wait for the next book...I tried to read this one slowly but it was impossible to put it down. I just wish the series could go on forever. J. K. Rowlings is a MASTER!
benjamin7373 More than 1 year ago
Rowling has managed to create a complete literary ecosystem from virgin word wool, replete with characters who resonate beyond tired tropes and who have, in their way, become cultural and ideological touchstones. The sixth installment of the Harry Potter mythology manages to both enlarge and shrink the world of wizards and humans through a thorough parsing of the details and the full realization of each character and their backstory. Not content to rely on standard archetypes, Rowling has managed a feat many writers cannot reach; namely, to have captured the complexity and contradictory nature of human existence in such a way as to make it accessible to audiences of all ages. Truly a praiseworthy piece of work.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would recomend this to people who love fantasy and who love a story with magic!!! Your love the books like i did!!!
ABookVacation More than 1 year ago
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is another amazing installment in the Harry Potter Series. On the plus side, the wizarding world is once again standing behind Harry and Dumbledore, aware that they were telling the truth about the return of Voldemort. On the negative side, however, many have met a premature death in the fight against pure evil. These are dark times, and though it seems impossible, the events that unfold in this novel are even more ominous than those that came before it. This is the first time readers are given a glimpse of the life that Tom Riddle led before becoming Lord Voldemort, beginning with his ill-conceived birth, and taking us through his time and actions in an orphanage, and his acceptance and studies at Hogwarts. Finally, we are able to begin to put together the pieces that made Voldemort who he is today&mdash;a killer intent on ruling forever and riding the world of mudbloods&mdash;anyone who isn&rsquo;t a pureblood witch or wizard. I really enjoyed this backwards glance into the life of our foe, Voldemort, as the puzzle-pieces began to come together and it is impossible not to be curious about the life and times of someone so inherently evil. Readers learn much about Voldemort&rsquo;s heritage, and perhaps the most important detail comes to light in this novel in terms of his life: the horcruxes. As the truth becomes clear concerning how Voldermort survived his backfiring curse the night he attempted to kill Harry, and with this knowledge, the race against time begins. This is an extremely engaging novel and, though sinister in tone and ominous in nature, it is an amazing tale that will leave you glued to the pages; it will haunt you long after it&rsquo;s over, especially as the unthinkable happens in this novel, an event that had me so aghast that the tissues by my side were not enough to do it justice. It is the beginning of the end, and while I do not want this amazing world that Rowling has created to end, I am more than ready to see justice served.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book had me crying, laughing, and on the edge of my couch . Because I already saw the movies before reading it I knew what to expect . But mo matter how many times I've seem the movies the book is still better and is much more detailed
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fantastic read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I absolutley love the sixth HP book. It is filled with action and things that make you think. A great summer read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harry Potter and the Half Blood The war against Voldemort isn't going that well. Harry Potter has joined Dumbledore to destroy Horcruxes. Life has become more of a wizard war every day. This book is an amazing thrilling book. It's filled with adventure, and lots of humor. To me it's the best Harry Potter book ever!! This is diffenetly a fourth grade and up book .and be sure if you want to read this book you should read book 1,2,3,4,and 5 in order to understand this story and not be confused on what's happening. Also this book is 652 pages so you better like long and adventurous books. And finally I would diffenetly give this book 5 stars!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harry Potter 6 is one of the best books in the series,yet at the same time the saddest.What makes it the saddest is the fact that the others aren't even sad!After you finish this one you should the last and best book in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really loved it.I think it was the best book ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Patito_de_Hule More than 1 year ago
The Ministry of Magic has finally admitted that Voldemort has returned, and Dumbledore has returned as Hogwarts Headmaster. Furthermore, Dumbledore has realized that it was a huge mistake to leave Harry in the dark for so long. He and Harry become much closer in Harry's sixth year at Hogwarts, as Dumbledore reveals much of what he knows of Voldemort's history and motivations to Harry. Harry is also kept busy with his new obsession that Draco Malfoy is up to new levels of &quot;no good.&quot; Ron and Hermione poo-poo his suspicions and keep themselves busy with escalating romantic tension.  Altogether, this book has a LOT going on, yet it's more compact than the previous two books. Overall, I think this is Rowling's best written book in the series, even if my favorites are the first four. I really enjoyed this re-read of the 6th book in the Harry Potter series - it's only my second time reading this book, and I had forgotten a lot of it. The romantic tension between Ron and Hermione is my favorite part of the book, since it'd been building for SO long and was finally let loose terrifically.   Jim Dale's reading, as usual, is excellent. It took some getting used to, but after the first or second book it really grew on me. I know all his voices for the characters, and that really ads to my enjoyment of the story. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am flagging every review that I dont like as spam Hahahahahahahahaha I think that this was an interesting spin on the series -less plot, and more of the characters' daily lives at Hogwarts It has a much darker mood to it than the first four, where the enemy only apears at the end. And less plot makes sense too, seeing as the next book is nothing but plot. And this is totally random, but which one do you peeps think is better ;Roserade, or Serperior?
rubydiamond More than 1 year ago
One of the biggest clifhangers of the series. The love bug strikes heavily. It made me anxious to read the last book to find out what was next.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When Harry gets to school- :) When Harry does outrageuos things- o-0 When Dumbledore dies- :0
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
HARRY POTTER NEVER LEARNS TO STAY OUT OF TROUBLE THATS WHAT IT MAKES IT FUN TO READ: )
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So awsone (cant spell)
lolobristow More than 1 year ago
I love this entire series. If you haven't read any of the Harry Potter books you are missing out.
KittinBooky More than 1 year ago
This book was the least liked out of the 7. I felt like there was no plot, or at least not a well defined one. It made you feel like this book was a bunch of filler. The book was off-track and had no meat to sustain any kind of suspence or excitement. I love the Harry Potter series, but this was the most boring book of all of them.
hpfanRD More than 1 year ago
This book is sooooo amzing. I mean like the war in voldemort, dumbledore away for times that seem like 4ever, and the order is just not having their good days(or months)But...as life whizzes past,hogwarts student learn to apperate.. and later on harry finds what may just be the only single vulnerability voldemort................