I know lots of Potter fans out there have a special love for Sirius Black, but for me what makes book 3 special is Remus Lupin. Of course, a man who carries chocolate with him and encourages you to eat it can always win a spot in my heart.
To be honest, the first time I read this series, I really didn’t particularly like Sirius Black. His actions in the 5th book which lead to his death struck me as supremely selfish. But, re-reading book 3 has helped to soften my impression of him. The scene in the book where he asks Harry if he wants to come live with him (however odd and sudden it was) was rather sweet. I long for a book focused on the Marauders- Mooney, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs. And of course, more Snape and Lily!
Prisoner of Azkaban is where Harry begins to grow up, he makes the decision to not kill Wormtail, a very mature choice given that his parent’s betrayer was also one of their most trusted friends. Poor Hermione in this book though- overworked and shunned by Ron and Harry when she is only trying to look out for their best interests. However, this is also the book that sees Hermione taking a swing at Draco and walking out of Divination in disgust- this is the Hermione we all love.
The only part of Prisoner of Azkaban that I have trouble with is the end. It doesn’t seem realistic that Dumbledore couldn’t find a way to clear Sirius Black’s name. It doesn’t make sense that suddenly the MoM is okay with lowering the intense security on the castle and around Harry (except for sending the Dementors back, since they did kind of try to kill Harry). Of course, if Sirius was free and clear, than that would have changed the entire rest of the series, so I’ll happily accept it.
Favorite quotes from the book:
“Mooney presents his compliments to Professor Snape, and begs him to keep his abnormally large nose out of other people’s business.”
“Harry and Ron both made furious moves toward Malfoy, but Hermione got there first-
She had slapped Malfoy across the face with all the strength she could muster. Malfoy staggered. Harry, Ron, Crabbe and Goyle stood flabbergasted as Hermione raised her hand again.”
‘”Well, honestly…’the fates have informed her’. Who sets the exam? She does! What an amazing prediction!” she said, not troubling to keep her voice low. Harry and Ron choked back laughs.
‘”Believe me,” croaked Black. “Believe me, Harry. I never betrayed James and Lily. I would have died before I betrayed them.”‘
‘”Are you insane?” said Harry, his voice easily as croaky as Black’s. “Of course I want to leave the Dursleys! Have you got a house? When can I move in?”‘
‘”HE DIDN’T DISAPPARATE!” Snape roared, now very close at hand. “YOU CAN’T APPARATE OR DISAPPARATE INSIDE THIS CASTLE! THIS – HAS- SOMETHING- TO- DO- WITH- POTTER!”‘
~Snape… poor Snape.
‘”You think the dead we loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don’t recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble? Your father is alive in you, Harry, and shows himself most plainly when you have need of him. How else could you produce that particular Patronus? Prongs rode again last night.”‘
‘”Godfather?” sputtered Uncle Vernon. “You haven’t got a godfather!”
“Yes, I have,” said Harry brightly. “He was my mum and dad’s best friend. He’s a convicted murderer, but he’s broken out of wizard prison and he’s on the run. He likes to keep in touch with me, though…keep up with my news…check if I’m happy…”‘
~Uncle Vernon and Harry
Prisoner of Azkaban gets a Midnight Book Rating of 11:30pm (inching it’s way to a full out Midnight rating). I’m so glad I re-read this book, it’s been too long!
Read for Challenge:
Other Challenges this book qualifies for in Labels.