Rating: ***** Suggested Age: 10
Summary: “The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Hermione 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. The Weasley twins expand their business. Sixth-year students learn to Apparate–and lose a few eyebrows in the process. 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 multi-layered 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.” (Summary found on the back of the book).
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is a great addition to the series. The book is around 600 pages. It is still on the high end of pages, but is lower compared to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. It has a lot of violence and many characters lives are in danger and a well-loved major character dies. The death of that character made me very sad and will likely make other kids sad too. A new type of creature is entered into the story. This creature is dark and can be scary to younger kids. There are also some moral dilemmas in this book. One of the teachers gives a main character a potion to make him lucky and he uses it wisely, but kids may wonder what a different character would have done in his place. A main character is cheating in his potions class by following written-in instructions that explain a flawless way to make the potions. He used to be terrible at potions and now he is getting appraised for his great potion making. That is cheating and he is aware of it. There is more love in this story and it causes a main character to get jealous and threaten their friendship. Rowling switched to darker topics in this almost-conclusion of the outstanding series. With that said it is a wonderful book that I recommend.