alyndra: (Default)
Okay, I realised what was missing from the last post, and it was my overall reaction to the book. I think in order to understand that, though, you have to understand what OotP was to me.

In retrospect, I was really wound up about OotP. I tried not to have a lot of specific ideas of what to expect, though of course I did, but my one great expectation was that JKR was going to surprise me. There would be a unique and brilliantly creative plot which nobody had predicted. There would be a fabulous and unexpected twist at the ending.

And it didn't happen. It just plain flat-out didn't happen. Instead we got a stupid prophecy, which half the fandom had predicted, saying that Harry and Voldemort were going to have to fight to the death, which the entire fandom, including most of the lunatic fringes, had predicted.

Even finding out what the Order of the Phoenix was -- a secret Voldemort-fighting group established by Dumbledore -- wasn't at all surprising.

Adding injury to insult, she killed one of my two favorite characters.

I can't say I disliked the book. Parts of it were enjoyable. But to this day, I haven't gotten around to reading it more than about three times. Compared to the number of times I've reread the rest of the series, that number is just pathetic.

Part of my reaction was that OotP was the first book that had come out since I'd discovered fandom. I had devoted way more obsessive thought as to what it would be like than to any of the the previous books. I had built it up onto a pedestal from which it could hardly help but fall.

This book, I went into differently. I had my ideas about what would or would not happen, yes, but I wasn't really attached to them at a visceral level. I was really surprised, actually, about how not-worked-up I managed to remain. So I got the book, read it through, but on some level I kept the attitude of, okay, whatever. JK's human, the book will go however it goes, and I'm just going to sit back and enjoy the ride.

Extremely vague spoilerish material; totally safe to read, but cut just to be on the safe side )

It'll be interesting to see reactions -- my own and others' -- to book seven. I'm a little afraid right now that I may not be able to maintain this nice detachment, but I guess I've got a couple of years to work on it. :g:
alyndra: (Default)
Ok, as I couldn't sleep, here's a more complete summary of events. First part has no spoilers, but there WILL be major spoilers later, under the cut.

I went to the midnight sale for this book, which has not happened before, but as siblings were flying back home in the morning, they obviously needed a copy of HBP to read on the airplane, so I bravely and generously volunteered to go get a copy for them, and while at it, one for me too. ;D So I got there circa nine-thirty, bought a small book for the waiting in line, and was out around twelve forty-five.

Came home and said to self, Self? The smart thing to do here is to leave the books in the bag, go to sleep, and read in the morning.

Self whined back, But I really really really want to read it! Pleeaase, just a little?

No, self, you know perfectly well 'just a little' will turn into 'the whole thing'!

Yes -- well -- it might not! And I really really want to read it!!

-----

So I read the whole thing. Finished @ eight fifteen, then out the door to take Dad and sibs to airport, where we waited at the curb for my brother to finish the last five pages of a library book he'd checked out on my card here, and then said goodbye and drove home. Had to work from eleven to seven-thirty, but only got, I dunno, twenty minutes sleep before then. Came home, slept twelve hours, went to work again, read internet reactions, exchanged opinions with sibs (who had finished with a couple hours to spare on the flight using the special New HP Book Technique of putting the book flat open between them and holding some pages straight up in the air so that both could read at their own pace) and now am finally getting around to posting my own reactions to the book.

BEYOND THIS POINT THERE BE SPOILERS

SPOILERS, HEAR? )

I may post more as I think of it, perhaps upon my second reading, but that's it for now. *waves merrily and heads off to bed*
alyndra: (Default)
OotP has some very useful spells in it. So it bugs me when I see the same old "he picked up his wand and threw locking and silencing spells at the door." Remember when we learned Silencing spells? We cast them on the things making noise and thus no more noise was made.

So unless we are dealing with one of those annoying doors which won't stop making lewd comments and belching loudly, a silencing spell is canonically a pretty pointless thing to throw at it. Most doors already are the silent type.

In canon, when people want to avoid being overheard, they cast an Impenetrable charm, which is presumably also useful in that objects and people cannot get through it, and so the occupants of the room are pretty much assured of privacy.

If this is not good enough, we might also remember Hermione's squelchy door-sealing spell in the DoM. (Colloportus, I think the word is.) And don't forget that handy spell for cleaning up messes, Evanesco. JKR provides us with some very useful spells, the least we can do is to use them.

"Locking and silencing spells" is just plain lazy writing. Pre-OotP it can be forgiven, but now that we know better, shouldn't our writing reflect this? Or is it a habit just too deeply ingrained to change?

Of course, this is the fandom which nine times out of ten willfully ignores the fact that Pepper-Up Potion has the side effect of making steam shoot out of its taker's ears. :/

[/ranty thing]
alyndra: (Default)
This was something I wrote and posted at ff.n a while ago, only shortly before I discovered the wonder of Menage a Trio, and it's more of a character study than anything else, although I've been told it's very sad. I just now went over it again, and added a bit of between-the-lines trio-shipping, and also a couple of commas. :-)

Perspective )
alyndra: (Default)
If you have not read anything by Angie Astravic, please allow me to tell you what you're missing.

Of the hundreds of authors I've read, not one comes anywhere near as close as she does to reproducing JKR's style of writing. It is amazing. Many of her reviewers have commented on it, so it's not just my opinion.

And if you want more from a fic, hers are funny, clever, and neatly plotted, as well. They are arranged in a series of more or less connected short stories, with reading order neatly laid out in the bio and partially in the summaries. The latest is a WIP, and she is still writing, albeit slowly.

I read them on ff.n, though they can also be found on FictionAlley and Skyehawke.

http://www.fanfiction.net/profile.php?userid=9000

http://www.fictionalley.org/ficalley/reviews/showthread.php?threadid=1963

http://www.skyehawke.com/archive/authors.php?no=79

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