Book Review

Review: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

With Voldemort fully revived, the universe of Harry Potter has changed into a grim world. A corrupt government, a torturous teacher and an undefined link between Harry and Voldemort’s mind is definitely not helping to lighten the mood in this book. I feel that in this book, Rowling has yet again found a way to up her game. 

Harry Potter might be 15 in this book, the conflicts he encounters require him to act far beyond his years. At the start of the summer, he has to save his cousin and himself from Dementors. This causes him trouble with the ministry, that after he claimed that Voldemort has returned is no longer a fan of Harry. In fact, they do everything they can to portray Harry as unstable and mentally ill.

As a reader, we know that Harry is right. Voldemort has returned. However, the magic community is not ready to accept this fact. They make the biggest newspaper (The Daily Prophet) spread ‘fake-news’. I feel that for students, it would be great to analyse this text in our modern-day society (ACELT1772). There is almost not a day going by in which American President Trump is not accusing someone of publishing fake-news, regardless of the consequences. It is not that hard to imagine what Minister Fudge would have to say about Harry on his magical Twitter-account.

I feel the content in this book is advanced. The language, however, is still comprehensible. Harry as a character is evolving, but this is the first book in which we become more familiar with the other characters too. This book could be used for character analysis (ACELT1642). For example, I would have my student pick one character. Analyse this character and then have them write a piece from this character’s point of view (ACELT1644).

As these curriculum descriptors corresponds with the Western Australian Curriculum for year 9 and 10, I feel that the book would be best for these years. Harry’s age would be in close proximity to the students and the language is not very complex in this book. Because the concepts in this story require students to think critically, I would probably use it in an Advanced Year 9 or General Year 10 class.

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