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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets…

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2) (original 1998; edition 2000)

by J. K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré

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70,2806322 (4.15)7 / 685
Title:Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Book 2)
Authors:J. K. Rowling
Other authors:Mary GrandPré
Info:Scholastic Paperbacks (2000), Edition: First, Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling (1998)

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Showing 1-5 of 598 (next | show all)
Just as good the second time around! ( )
  TheresaCIncinnati | Aug 17, 2015 |
Loved this as a read-aloud, but my 6th grade son wouldn't wait for me when we reached the halfway point and finished the novel in one marathon reading session. I had to read the rest alone, but we still were able to discuss. I am now a definite Potter fan, and can't wait for the next one (and I don't have to wait!)

**Spoiler Alert!** The rest is way below:

I made the connection that Voldemort is so much like Hitler (in a crude way). It's ironic that he's interested in annihilating a race to which he himself belongs. He is not a "pure blood", yet the goal of the Chamber of Secrets was to use Hogwarts to turn out an new pure blood race of wizards. And the novel brings light to the idea that genius can be used to reach "horrible, but great" ends. Dumbledore's counsel to Harry at the end (I look forward to having a collection of 7 of these!) in which he explains that it's our choices and not our aptitudes or "blood" that make us who we are was a quote-worthy moment. Simple, true; an adage to ponder. Shockingly to me, these novels provide more than merely escape and entertainment, and it's an experience especially wonderful to share with you child. ( )
  engpunk77 | Aug 10, 2015 |
It's been very interesting, reading these British editions aloud to my son. For one thing, it's nice to know I can still cuddle up and bond over a story with an almost-sixteen-year-old, no matter what color his Mohawk is this week. For another, I'm understanding a lot more of the pure pleasure that can be derived from the Potter books. I recently read an article by a film fiend who insisted that movies can only be enjoyed completely in the context of a theater with other people. The humor and suspense of Harry's adventures comes through so much more strongly when shared this way. We've listened to the recordings together, but even that isn't the same as one of us offering the words to the other.

(It doesn't matter which one of us is doing the reading. I just caught a bad cold and begged my son to read our nightly chapter yesterday. After warning me that he "can't do voices," my son ended up throwing himself into an inspired performance, completely with an appropriately rough and rusty rendering of Hagrid.)

I don't know if he was worried about the criticisms I've voiced (here and at home) about aspects of the Potterverse, or if he thought he might seem too old for this sort of enchantment; but my son recently told me in an "I just have to admit this" tone that he really enjoys these books. "They're fun," he said. "Reading them makes me happy." I agreed with him, and assured him that I'd never meant to say anything to imply that he couldn't or shouldn't feel that way. There is so much to love about these stories.

Which, yeah, okay, makes me that much more bummed out about what I see as genuinely creepy moral lapses in Rowling's creation.

In this volume, Mr. Weasley (a very sympathetic and appealing character) is revealed to be an employee of the Misuse of Muggle Artefacts [sic] Office:

"It's all to do with bewitching things that are Muggle-made, you know, in case they end up back in a Muggle shop or house. Like, last year, some old witch died and her tea set was sold to an antiques shop. This Muggle woman brought it, took it home and tried to serve her friends tea in it. It was a nightmare -- Dad was working overtime for weeks. ...The teapot went berserk and squirted boiling tea all over the place and one man ended up in hospital with the sugar tongs clamped to his nose."

This is a delightful passage. It's like something out of "Bed-knob and Broomstick," one of my favorite stories ever. It's followed, however, by this:

"Dad was going frantic, it's only him and an old warlock called Perkins in the office, and they had to do Memory Charms and all sorts to cover it up..." [ellipses in original]

...and all of a sudden we're in menacing territory, at least to an American. I have very bad associations with the idea of forcing amnesia on those who learn too much about how the way the world *really* works. Bad enough if it were done in the name of defensible (so to speak) national security concerns. Absolutely unnerving when performed by those who are interested in keeping the true nature of the universe a secret for the sake of greed and convenience. And that's really all it is.

Rowling seems to realize she's on unsteady ground here. Later in the book, she describes the founders of Hogwarts as building the castle in "an age when magic was feared by common people, and witches and wizards suffered much persecution." But how does this jell with what she said in the previous book about magic-users keeping their powers secret because "common people" would want to use magic to solve their problems? (You know -- the way the wizarding community does.) Or what she says at the beginning of the very next book (I'm behind on my reviews) about how much real witches enjoy being harmlessly burned at the stake?

Also, what on *earth* is up with Mandrake roots? They're presented as conscious, sentient beings who begin life *looking just like human babies* -- but chopping them up can create potent magic, so that's what the wizarding community does. I kept trying to tell myself that surely Madam Pomfrey only meant the *leaves* of the Mandrake plant. Maybe that really *is* what she means when she says:

"'The moment their acne clears up, they'll be ready for repotting again,' Harry heard her telling Filch kindly one afternoon. 'And after that, it won't be long until we're cutting them up and stewing them.'"

Or when Professor Sprout is happy to report that "several of the Mandrakes threw a loud and raucous party in Greenhouse Three. 'The moment they start trying to move into each other's pots, we'll know they're fully mature,' she told Harry. 'Then we'll be able to revive those poor people in the hospital wing.'"

Okay. On to pleasanter matters.

Some of the best fun that comes from reading these books in the original British is learning some new vocabulary. I now know the verb "to scarper." I'm still trying to figure out what it is to go somewhere "crocodile fashion," as the students do when Snape snaps that they have to hurry along to Herbology class. So "off they went, crocodile fashion." The American edition just says, "off they marched."

At one point, Ron asks why Tom Riddle had to "grass on Hagrid." I'd never heard this before, in spite of years of listening to British comedy and BBC Global News podcasts. My American edition translates that, with appropriate slanginess, as "squeal on." The day after my son and I read this passage, I was listening to one of the aforementioned podcasts. I believe it was the brilliant British comedian Jeremy Hardy who casually used the phrase "grass on." Never heard it before, and suddenly here I am coming across it twice in 24 hours. I'm gobsmacked, I am. ( )
1 vote Deborah_Markus | Aug 8, 2015 |
So as with the first one this review will just be things I notice that differ between the movie and the books.

-I wish the movies had more Percy. As much as I dislike Percy in the books I think he adds a great element to the story.
-I wish we saw more of Harry at the Burrow. I feel like we see Harry mistreated so much that it would be nice to see Harry get treated well for once.
-I really wish the movies included Hermione's parents as they would have included a really interesting aspect to the story.
-For real though how did JK Rowling come up with stuff like the Mandrakes???
-Lockheart was even more insufferable in the book.
-I would have LOVED to see a deathday party in the movies. And Peeves.
-Fun fact: Nearly Headless Nick died the same year that Columbus discovered the Americas so that's interesting.
-One thing that really bothers me, more than others (it's bolded so it draws attention) is a lot of Ron's lines in the books, especially ones where he says things quite intelligent, are said by Hermione in the movies. I'm not sure if this is to make Ron appear more daft, or to make Hermione that much more superior to them in knowledge, but this really irks me because I forgot how intelligent Ron actually is.
-In the movie they never explain what a squib is? We're just meant to believe that they have a random human cleaning the castle and when Mrs.Figg tells Harry she's a fig there's really no explanation what the weird word means. Imagine if they never told us what Muggle meant? Same sort of thing.
-I wish the ghost teacher was in the movie? He's the only professor left out.
-I would LOVE if JK wrote novellas about the four founding fathers of Hogwarts. Especially Godrick and Salazar.
-Percy though the little shit taking points from his own house?
-Why did they include some weird snitch chase with Malfoy in Quidditch that is not even close to what happened in the book?
-I liked that we are told there is a dueling club, rather than the movie just having a random dueling scene.
-I really wish JK had explored the idea of Harry being related to Salazar.
-Hagrid is so so important and my favourite and I still cannot believe Harry named his son after a man who never told him anything and a man who tormented him for years. Hagrid never treated him like a kid and I love that.
-Why is the Defense Against The Dark Arts professor position curse never mentioned in the movie I thought that was really interesting.

So yeah Loved LOVED it but just a few nit picky things about the movie. ( )
1 vote thatgirlbookworm | Aug 5, 2015 |
Another reread for me and I again enjoyed the book immensly! I have not read the books for a while and I was yet again amazed at the amount of detail put in the book. This book just enveloped me in my magic. Magic, magic everywhere. Surrounding me. Making me feel like I was a person living inside this magnificent world, but terrifying and dangerous nonetheless! ( )
  Hanneri | Jul 14, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 598 (next | show all)
The atmosphere Rowling creates is unique; the story whizzes along; Harry is an unassuming and completely sympathetic hero. But, truth to tell, you may feel as if you’ve read it all before. Rowling clearly hit on a winning formula with the first Harry Potter book; the second book — though still great fun — feels a tad, well, formulaic.
Tras derrotar una vez más a lord Voldemort, su siniestro enemigo en Harry Potter y la piedra filosofal, Harry espera impaciente en casa de sus insoportables tíos el inicio del segundo curso del Colegio Hogwarts de Magia y Hechicería. Sin embargo, la espera dura poco, pues un elfo aparece en su habitación y le advierte que una amenaza mortal se cierne sobre la escuela. Así pues, Harry no se lo piensa dos veces y, acompañado de Ron, su mejor amigo, se dirige a Hogwarts en un coche volador. Pero ¿puede un aprendiz de mago defender la escuela de los malvados que pretenden destruirla? Sin saber que alguien ha abierto la Cámara de los Secretos, dejando escapar una serie de monstruos peligrosos, Harry y sus amigos Ron y Hermione tendrán que enfrentarse con arañas gigantes, serpientes encantadas, fantasmas enfurecidos y, sobre todo, con la mismísima reencarnación de su más temible adversario.
added by Pakoniet | editLecturalia

» Add other authors (77 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
J. K. Rowlingprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Astrologo, MarinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Buddingh', WiebeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dale, JimNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fry, StephenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
GrandPré, MaryIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kapari, JaanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kibuishi, KazuCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riglietti, SerenaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vierikko, VesaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wright, CliffCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Seán P. F. Harris, getaway driver and foul-weather friend.
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Not for the first time, an argument had broken out over breakfast at number four, Privet Drive.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
The Latin translation of this book (Harrius Potter et Camera Secretorum) should NOT be combined with the main work (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets), under the "dead languages" exception in the combining rules.
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Haiku summary
Harry talks to snakes.
Why is he a Gryffindor?
Lucky for Ginny....

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0439064864, Hardcover)

It's hard to fall in love with an earnest, appealing young hero like Harry Potter and then to watch helplessly as he steps into terrible danger! And in J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, the much anticipated sequel to the award-winning Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, he is in terrible danger indeed. As if it's not bad enough that after a long summer with the horrid Dursleys he is thwarted in his attempts to hop the train to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to begin his second year. But when his only transportation option is a magical flying car, it is just his luck to crash into a valuable (but clearly vexed) Whomping Willow. Still, all this seems like a day in the park compared to what happens that fall within the haunted halls of Hogwarts.

Chilling, malevolent voices whisper from the walls only to Harry, and it seems certain that his classmate Draco Malfoy is out to get him. Soon it's not just Harry who is worried about survival, as dreadful things begin to happen at Hogwarts. The mysteriously gleaming, foot-high words on the wall proclaim, "The Chamber of Secrets Has Been Opened. Enemies of the Heir, Beware." But what exactly does it mean? Harry, Hermione, and Ron do everything that is wizardly possible--including risking their own lives--to solve this 50-year-old, seemingly deadly mystery. This deliciously suspenseful novel is every bit as gripping, imaginative, and creepy as the first; familiar student concerns--fierce rivalry, blush-inducing crushes, pedantic professors--seamlessly intertwine with the bizarre, horrific, fantastical, or just plain funny. Once again, Rowling writes with a combination of wit, whimsy, and a touch of the macabre that will leave readers young and old desperate for the next installment. (Ages 9 and older) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:23 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

When the Chamber of Secrets is opened again at the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry, second-year student Harry Potter finds himself in danger from a dark power that has once more been released on the school.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 21 descriptions

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