A 20-Something’s Review Of Reading Harry Potter For The First Time

I’m 26 years old and I just finished reading the Harry Potter books for the first time. What took me so long? I loved the movies, but was never really able to get into the books. I didn’t start them when I was young like I should have. Then I tried to read them in high school and again in college and I just didn’t have the mindset to get through the first couple chapters of the Sorcerer’s Stone.

But two years ago, I tagged along on my boyfriend’s work trip to Orlando and we visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I fell in love and decided I needed to read the books.

And yes, it took me a full two years. I enjoyed Sorcerer’s Stone. It was an easy read, had a lot of fun and excitement. I absolutely love the way Dumbledore is portrayed in the books and I’m sad that Peeves didn’t make it into the movies. I knew I couldn’t rush through the rest of the books.

Everyone kept telling me I needed to chug through the first two books, but I also enjoyed Chamber of Secrets and it wasn’t hard for me to get through.

One thing about the movies is I started to get a little lost around the Prisoner of Azkaban. And I was right to because the book goes into so much more detail about the friendships of the Marauders which I loved. Books 1-3 were good reads because they almost always had happy endings, but as an adult I was excited for the character development and plot that was about to unravel.

Everyone hypes up Goblet of Fire a lot, deservedly so because it’s a great book. Dobby definitely deserved more screen time in the movies, but besides that I think they are pretty accurate in getting as much info in as possible. After Goblet of Fire, I had only seen bits and pieces of the rest of the movies so the next few reads had some surprises in store for me. I knew the big plot deaths because of spoilers, but I didn’t know everything.

Order of the Phoenix was really just as good as Goblet of Fire, it had a lot of action which was exciting. It was the first one where I kind of felt like I needed a long break before I read the next one just to digest what happened. I began to hate a lot of characters (lookin at you Umbridge, Kreature, and Bellatrix).

I’m glad I took the break between Order of the Phoenix and Half-Blood Prince because if I was grieving after Order of the Phoenix, Half-Blood Prince ruined my life!!!!!!!

And lastly, I finally got around to reading Deathly Hallows. Even though I hated everything that had happened in the last two books. I had to hope for some sort of ending that brought it all together, that made all the pain worth it. Even though Deathly Hallows was a blood bath, it resolved the series really nicely for me. I hadn’t seen ANY of the last movies so I was actually 100% surprised when it came to this book. There were a lot of twists at the end that I wasn’t expecting and the writing didn’t make it super easy for me to connect the dots of some of the mysteries which I enjoyed

I’ve always tested as a Slytherin and even after I finished I was like let me check one more time now that I have all the book knowledge. But no, I’m a Slytherin. Which I used to think was cool but after I finished Deathly Hallows I was trying to find like one good Slytherin person and there really aren’t any!! While I’m obviously not like a Hermione or Luna or Ginny, and I am a little like a Slughorn, I definitely wouldn’t have been a Death Eater!

Those are my final thoughts on the series. I still have to watch the last movies and then in the near future I plan to read alongside of the podcast Bingemode because I know I probably missed a lot during the first read.

18 thoughts on “A 20-Something’s Review Of Reading Harry Potter For The First Time

  1. I loved your perspective on reading the Harry Potter books for the first time! My mom read my sister and I the first couple of books as they were coming out and I remember being so excited to go to bed every night to figure out what was going to happen in the next chapter. I learned how to read quickly so that I could read the books by myself and finish them faster. My mom would only buy one copy of each book for the three of us to read so I had to be a fast reader to finish it before the others.

    The Half-Blood Prince also ruined my life! I finished reading it and immediately turned to the first page and started the book again. I couldn’t believe that happened. I’ve also tested as a Hufflepuff which is a little disappointing but it’s fine.

    You make me want to read the whole series again though! It’s been awhile since I’ve last read all of the books in order. I think that’ll be my next quarantine project 😉

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  2. We have read the series three times and loved it each time. Sadly there are no Slytherins in the book that are shown as good but being a Slytherin is not bad. Being driven, goal focused, and refusing to settle are all Slytherin traits but make for great leaders, role models, and scientists. You are in great company!

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  3. I’ve read the books 1-4 one time through in high school in like one week. And read the rest of the books as they came out when I was in college. I seriously cried when I read that Dobby died. I probably watched The Chamber of Secrets about a million times and probably memorize every line. My favorite movie was Goblet of Fire. I’m so happy you finally got to read the books! I’m currently listening to a podcast called Harry Potter At He Readings where a chapter is read by familiar people (the first chapter being read by Daniel Radcliffe). I’m so excited to go through the adventure again!

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  4. It’s great you finally finished the series! I’m on Deathly Hallows now and will probably finish it in the next week. I’m planning to do a recap post like this too!

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  5. I waited until around your age to read the whole series too! 😅 I had read the Prisoner of Azkaban in my teen years and loved it, but back then, the book wasn’t that easy to get a hold of in Jamaica. After I moved here, I read them all.

    I always thought I’d be a Gryffindor for my love of adventure, but I tested as a Ravenclaw, which also makes sense. Breezed through my entire academic liife on honour roll and I love books. 😅

    I did find Harry Potter annoying by about the time he broke into the Slytherin’s stuff on the train though and Ron really started to ride my nerves with his jealousy. Hermione definitely deserved a better partner, but I suppose it’s a realistic portrayal of what women settle for in the name of love. 🤣

    If you’re interested, here are my impressions from when I finished them in 2017: https://blackcatastrophy.com/2017/10/12/book-review-harry-potter-1-7/

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