Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
In his third year at Hogwarts, Harry has to deal with new classes that could spell disaster for him, win the Quidditch cup for Gryffindor, and avoid the escaped prisoner who sold his parents to Voldemort – and is now headed to Hogwarts to take Harry out.
Publisher’s Description: Harry Potter is lucky to reach the age of thirteen, since he has already survived the murderous attacks of the feared Dark Lord on more than one occasion. But his hopes for a quiet term concentrating on Quidditch are dashed when a maniacal mass-murderer escapes from Azkaban, pursued by the soul-sucking Dementors who guard the prison. It’s assumed that Hogwarts is the safest place for Harry to be. But is it a coincidence that he can feel eyes watching him in the dark, and should he be taking Professor Trelawney’s ghoulish predictions seriously?
Possible spoilers ahead.
Kat Mandu says…
Like many of my fellow bloggers, this is my favorite in the series. The characters are beginning to grow up, the magic is getting real, and I’m really enjoying how much the world Harry knows is expanding. Here we’ve got werewolves, teachers who can predict the future, and for the first time, a window to Harry’s past as he discovers the former friends of his parents.
Here are a few of my favorites:
Favorite characters: Hermione and Hagrid rule this story for me. Hermione shows off just how smart she is by using the Time-Turner to save both Sirius and Buckbeak, not to mention getting through all those classes with flying colors and standing up to Malfoy. And Hagrid, well he’s just a big softie with a lot of dangerous pets as he introduces Buckbeak, the hippogriff, and has to deal with a stunt by Malfoy that puts Buckbeak in danger. But he finally gets the job he wants and since he doesn’t get fired, I’m really eager to reread just what he has in store for Harry and co. next book.
Favorite scenes: Harry discovering that “Sirius” betrayed his parents after overhearing a secret discussion from the teachers. This shows us that Harry is getting all kinds of new hormones and a temper, willing to risk murdering the betrayer of his parents in order to avenge them. And my second favorite scenes goes along with that as we find out Sirius did in fact not sell the Potters out to Voldemort and asks Harry to come live with him, stealing him away from the Dursleys and giving him a place of comfort instead.
Favorite lines: “You think the dead we loved truly ever leave us? You think that we don’t recall them more clearly in times of great trouble?”
But I also loved this because it made me laugh: “It’s obvious what it means. There’s going to be loads of fog tonight.”
Luna Lovebooks says…
Ironically this is my third favorite Harry Potter novel. I love that we get to see a darker side of Harry and that he also gets a ray of hope to escape the horrible Dursleys. The creatures and even Hogwarts itself get more and more interesting with every page.
Invested Ivana says…
Book 3 is my favorite in the series. It has something to do with Harry finally having a “familial” tie to the magical world in Sirius. Even though he’s not able to leave the Dursleys and live with Sirius at the end, knowing that Sirius is free, didn’t kill his parents, and WANTS to be Harry’s guardian gives him a firmer footing in the world and confidence in himself. Harry is building his own family, and isn’t that what we all do?
I like that in this book we’re starting to see hints about Ron and Hermione’s relationship. They’re fighting a lot, and yet Ron is protective and admiring of her at times.
Regardless of what we learn about Snape in future books, this book convinces me that he is a mean-spirited, arrogant, petty bastard. He takes his own misery and anger out on children, which is never appropriate for an adult to do (even though it happens too often). People can be both heroic for their own reasons and jerks at the same time. Snape definitely is that.
I love that Hermione tells Trelawney to kiss off, basically. I’ve had some teachers and bosses like that, who are so fake it’s criminal. That Hermione recognizes her for what she is (most of the time) and quits the class shows that she can think for herself and doesn’t have time for stupidity. It’s ironic, then, that Trelawney is for real, but only on rare occasions.
This is about the last movie I could watch without full-body cringing. But I did like the line where Hermione says “Is that really what my hair looks like from the back?” I don’t know why, but that tickled my fancy. 😉
Agent Annie says…
By far, this volume in the Harry Potter series is my favorite. It moves along so nicely and keeps the reader engaged throughout the whole story. I kept checking my % completed so I could update Goodreads and I realized until the last 20% or so, we still didn’t know that Sirius Black was a good guy. JK Rowling did such a good job with the suspense on whether Harry was going to be attacked by Black.
I also hadn’t remembered how nasty Snape was. I’m such a fan of the actor, Alan Rickman, who played Snape in the movies, I just didn’t see his hatred for Harry like I do in this book. If you haven’t read the books, at this point you have to really wonder what Snape did to convince Dumbledore he wasn’t part of Lord Voldemort’s followers. Already knowing the answer makes this part of knowing the character more complex and interesting.
I also love how JK Rowling has worked in the awkwardness of pre-teens starting to become aware of the other gender. For example, Harry turning red when Cho says hello, Ron not knowing if or how he was supposed to comfort Hermoine when she was crying.
This book is just so well done. I give it a 5+.
Our reviews in this series…
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Book 01
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Book 02
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Book 03
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Book 04
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Book 05
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Book 06
- Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Book 07
- Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Book 08
- All the Harry Potter companion books by J. K. Rowling