And so we begin with the fifth book in the series – also, we are getting so close to the end of this series! – again a reminder that this will have spoilers.
Harry is now going into his fifth year of Hogwarts, but after everything that has happened the previous year, and being kept away from everyone with magical connections for the whole summer, he’s not been able to process everything that happened to him that well. He’s desperate to speak to Ron and Hermione again, but after escaping a Dementor attack with his cousin, he is summoned to court by the Ministery of Magic, and Harry’s fate could very well be sealed.
This is the one book that am sure most people remember for one particular reason:
Dolores Umbridge isn’t the only new character introduced in this book however, although she is the one that makes a lasting impression, on Harry and ourselves.
Kretcher the Black’s house elf, who seems to have taken the same mindset as many of the Deatheaters -although not surprising given the household he has been in for his whole life.
Luna Lovegood, a Ravenclaw with a mind that tends to wander to the more unusual side of things:
Umbridge takes the main stage in regards to being in the book most often, although I do wish that Luna had appeared more in the books earlier, because she is a rather interesting character on a whole.
The book is a different ride to the previous one’s. Because Harry is still dealing with the fact that no one believes him that Voldemort is back, he watched a classmate die in front of him and he has been kept away from everyone that he could possibly vent to, talk to about everything he was feeling. So we return to find Harry isn’t the exact same character that he was before, he’s short tempered, snappish and doesn’t regard his friends very highly. Essentially Dumbledore and the other wizards who were supposed to help Harry, overlooked the fact that he might very well need a little bit of help mentally in regards to the strain he’s been under.
Umbridge also puts Harry, Fred and George Weasley off the Quidditch team, as well as create a load of new rules that students have to obey, particularly once Dumbledore has been ousted from his position as Headmaster of Hogworts, much to the dismay of the majority of students and faculty members.
There are many other plots within this novel, Hagrids half brother appearing, the clan of centaurs that we saw a few books ago have pushed one of their members out who now works within the school. The Oder of the Phoenix, meeting Nymphadora Tonks, and finally we actually get to see Bellatrix Lestrange in action.
While the book doesn’t have any happy ending, as the books are gradually getting darker as the series goes on – it does add a bit more drama to the wizarding world. The fact that the Ministery of Magic was denying that Voldemort was back to simply keep the peace and also because they didn’t want to deal with another wizarding war, which could be seen as being annoying, and why were so many wizards and witches not willing to believe Harry until that piece came out in The Quibbler? But it does make sense, because only Harry saw it, and Harry was a 14 year old boy who was constantly recognised as being famous just for suriving an attack by Voldemort. It would have been easy enough to discredit him.
A lot of things were going on in this book, but every part of it was important to the series and the eventual end.
Have you ever had a teacher like Umbridge? And what do you think of the house elf’s as a whole now that we have been introduced to Kretcher?