Monday, July 29, 2019

#YearOfHarryPotter: Order of the Phoenix, Chapters 17-19

Last week, I read Chapter 17 ("Educational Decree Number Twenty-Four"), Chapter 18 ("Dumbledore's Army"), and Chapter 19 ("The Lion and the Serpent"). My comments contain spoilers.

In these three chapters, Umbridge's war against Harry and the Hogwarts students who support him continues as she introduces a new decree disallowing all student groups of which she does not approve. This, of course, should foil the plans to form a secret Defense Against the Dark Arts group, but, thankfully, it doesn't. The scenes where Harry shares his expertise with his friends provide a much-needed glimmer of light and hope in a book otherwise fraught with frustration for the main characters.

I was also pleased to finally reach the first iteration of "Weasley is our King." I love Ron, so of course I feel terrible about his failure on the Quidditch pitch, and the way he lets the Slytherin players shake his confidence, but I crack up every time I read those lyrics. (It also helps that I know how the song will eventually become an anthem in praise of Ron.)

The other thing I loved in these chapters is Umbridge's interactions with Snape and McGonagall. They both go back at her in a way the other professors don't, and McGonagall's disgust, especially, makes me happy, if for no other reason than the feeling that there is an adult on Harry's side even if Dumbledore has to remain at a distance. Of course, it infuriates me that Umbridge has gotten the upper hand again by banning half the Gryffindor  team from playing Quidditch, but I take comfort in the fact that her comeuppance is still ahead. 

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