Publishing Info: July 16, 2005 by Scholastic Inc.
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // GoodreadsDate Completed: December 6, 2014
Related Posts: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter #1), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter #2), The Hogwarts Library, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter #3), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter #4), Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter #5), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter #7), Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Harry Potter #8)
The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing. Ron 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.
As in all wars, life goes on. Sixth-year students learn to Apparate — and lose a few eyebrows in the process. The Weasley twins expand their business. 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 multilayered sixth installment of the story of Harry Potter. Here are 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.
** There WILL be spoilers for this book (and the final book) so if you haven’t read it yet, BEWARE. You’re gonna get spoiled! **
I felt a bit of pressure before starting HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE. It’s been a long time since I’ve re-read all of the books but I always claimed this one as my favorite of the series. After realizing how much my opinion of ORDER OF THE PHOENIX had changed, I was totally unsure of how HBP would go.
Right off the bat, though, I was still in love. I just love how this book really brings everything to the next level — from the plot to the adventure, Quidditch to romances — everything just gets bigger and better in HALF-BLOOD PRINCE. I think one of my favorite things about it is the introduction to Horcruxes. I just really love the layers that it adds to the plot and how it adds another sense of adventure for the characters. I also really, really love that we get to know more about the villain’s past. I LOVE when the reader gets to know more about the villain and his backstory. I think it adds so much to a book and even makes that villain a bit more human — whether that’s by a little or a lot. We all know how amazing J.K. Rowling is at her world building in these books so I guess I should never be surprised but that really is one of my favorite things about the entire series.
I really wasn’t big on many of the romances in this series. For me, Harry Potter was always more about action, adventure, friendship, learning, and well… magic. Movie Ginny kind of ruined book Ginny for me so I was really trying to give book Ginny another shot since I know where this story goes… I felt like she actually wasn’t hugely present in HALF-BLOOD PRINCE still so I didn’t feel like I had the opportunity to be bothered or charmed by her. She did make many appearances at the Slug Club parties and Quidditch matches, etc but for some reason I still felt like she wasn’t a very big character… I’m really interested to see how I feel about her in book seven because so far reading the books, I still don’t feel a lot! I do, of course, love the Ron and Hermione romance. You know I love best friendships turning into something more and this was a long time coming. It’s really interesting to see how this tension has slowly built and comes to its breaking point at the end of HALF-BLOOD PRINCE.
As always, I love the layers upon layers of world building. From getting to know more about Voldemort to the different classes the students take to the different places they visit… I just love getting lost in this world and something about the writing just makes me feel like it’s a real place, just out of my reach. I always love learning more about magic and what the rules are and what the limitations are. The Felix Felicis chapter is still one of my favorites and the cave scene at the end still creeps me out a lot. Then of course we have Dumbledore’s death. I’m not sure why — maybe I know the books/movies too well? — but I never really feel shaken by the deaths in these books (except for probably Fred, oh god, how will I read that) so I really didn’t get too worked up over his death… But I think for Dumbledore, it doesn’t really feel like he’s gone, you know? His portrait is in the headmaster’s office and we know he sort of… appears to Harry in the final book too. It’s Dumbledore. He’s the greatest wizard of all time. He may be dead but only kind of?
The great news is that HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE still stands as my favorite of the series so far! I was never able to place my love for the final book so it’ll be interesting to see where I come out on this re-read!
Ranking after re-read of book #1:  // [6, 4, 5, 7, 3, 2]
Ranking after re-read of book #2: [1, 2] // [6, 4, 5, 7, 3]
Ranking after re-read of book #3: [3, 1, 2] // [6, 4, 5, 7]
Ranking after re-read of book #4: [4, 3, 1, 2] // [6, 5, 7]
Ranking after re-read of book #5: [4, 3, 1, 5, 2] // [6, 7]
Ranking after re-read of book #6: [6, 4, 3, 1, 5, 2] // 
“The View from Goodreads” is a featured section in my reviews that I decided to incorporate! I tend to update my Goodreads status a LOT when I read — reactions, feelings, notes — so I thought it would be fun to share the sort of “reading process”! All status updates are spoiler-free (no specific plot points will be revealed) but will contain reactions to certain pages and/or characters!
Lavender Brown // Character Obsessions: Frivolous things, Won-won, kissing, giggling.
I kind of love Lavender Brown a little bit. She’s SO ridiculous but I really do like what she adds to the story. Without Ron & Lavender’s relationship, I don’t think Hermione’s jealousy would have escalated enough to FINALLY hit Ron over the head about their feelings for each other. Lavender was a little bit necessary for that so thank goodness for her, huh?
Kept Me Hooked On: Felix Felicis. Can you imagine what a day would be like with Felix Felicis? I can only picture what one perfect day would be like… I loved that chapter when Harry took it! It was so interesting to see how things magically fell into place.
Left Me Wanting More: Ron & Hermione. They are JUST STARTING to realize what they actually mean to each other. GO FORTH, KIDS. Go forth and love!
Well, re-read if of course! This is still one of my favorites and I still highly recommend re-reading this whole series.
BOOKS LIKE HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE
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8 thoughts on “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter #6) – J.K. Rowling”
Yes! This is so great! I’m a HUGE Potter fan, so naturally I fully support this series reread. I think my ranking of these books are: 3, 4, 7, 1, 6, 2, 5. I haven’t read them for about two years, though, so I’m definitely due for a reread myself. Enjoy the last book! I’m looking forward to hearing your final thoughts.
Half Blood Prince is still my favorite too!! I haven’t read them in a while but I think I’ve read HBP 4 or 5 times. I love the worldbuilding and the history of Voldemort, ohhh I loved all the Pensieve scenes! And learning about the horcruxes 😀 I actually loved Ginny in this book, book Ginny is awesome. She dates and has hilarious sarcastic remarks and hmmm yeah I love her. The Felix Felicis chapter is also one of my favorites, Harry is so funny! And Dumbledore’s death got to me; I remember shaking I was so shocked and just AHHHH. Man. Now I want to skip from CoS and got right to Half Blood Prince haha! Going to read them all though. Love your review, must have been so fun to write 🙂 I also love noticing easter eggs like the cabinet Draco uses. Harry just hid in it in Chamber of Secrets!!! Eep. Have fun with Deathly Hallows 😀
I’ve been meaning to reread this series for a long time. I tried to start it up again as a read aloud with my third grader, but he wasn’t ready for it yet. I’ll give it a shot again soon.
I do this thing where I read Harry Potter every year at least once. There’s so much about the story that no one can ever really get it all in one read. GReat review!
That’s so cool that you’re rereading HP. I hope I can make time for that someday! I’ve only read them once and it was a such a magical experience… I would love to relive that. Anyway, movie Ginny totally ruined book Ginny for me too. Not that I loved her THAT much in the books either. I was kind of hoping Harry would end up with someone not prominent in the book… or maybe with Luna. But I didn’t like so many couplings of the m/c’s. That just seemed too convenient. Great review… I thought OOTP was my fav book, but I wonder if I reread I would still think that?? Good to know that feelings can change.
I was doing a re-read of HP last year but stalled after HP4. HP5 is the saddest for me, and I haven’t been brave enough to face all those emotions that I would feel with HP5. It’s been about 5.5 years since I’ve this book, but I know I loved it. As of right now (having recently re-read books 1-4) my favorites are
But my ranking really has to do with me hating to feel so depressed. I love all the books to death!!!!
Ah! I can’t wait to indulge in a series binge of Harry Potter this year. It’s been much, much too long since that happened — and it gives me an excuse to buy all new editions 😉 Glad to see you’re still loving it all!
Oooh! I love that you are re-reading the whole series. I should definitely do that at some point because I haven’t read them in soo long. I agree with your feelings about so many things. This is also one of my favourites in the series! I realized that I love more the books that share a huge part of background story with us. Like this one, where we learn so much about Tom Riddle, and the 3rd book were we learn everything about Harry’s parents, especially the really cool group of friends they had.
I also think I ranked books 5 and 2 as my least favourite, and I never really felt shaken by Dumbledore’s death, because it felt like he couldn’t really have been lost forever. And he wasn’t. Fred and Lupin’s death did strike me hard though.