Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – Chapter 11 (#PotterheadReadAlong19)

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In Chapter 11, the brewing of the polyjuice potion has begun, the trio has to cause a distraction in Snape’s class, the Dueling Club has it’s first very eventful meeting, and the monster strikes again . Let’s go!

Now that Harry’s arm is all mended, it’s time to get back to business. Polyjuice time! Ron and Hermione have started the brewing process in Moaning Myrtle’s bathroom (because let’s be honest, who’s gonna look for them there?) and have done everything they can without those last few ingredients. That they will have to steal. From Snape. No possible way for this to go wrong.

Hermione decides she should be the one to actually steal the stuff because she hasn’t gotten into any trouble before. And, let’s be honest, she knows what she’s looking for. I don’t know if I would trust Ron to find the proper things. Sorry Ron. The distraction actually works – Harry throws a firecracker into one of the cauldrons during class, and in the ensuing chaos, Hermione is able to slip into Snape’s office and get the ingredients they need. Harry can tell though, just by the way Snape is looking at him, that Snape knows Harry did it. He has no proof though, so Harry is safe for now.

We get lots of excellent Snape scenes in this chapter, the next one being the Dueling Club, which Harry is excited to join, until he sees that Lockhard is running it. Ugh. He has talked Snape into assisting him and it is rather funny seeing Snape throw Lockhart across the room. This scene is more than just fun and games though, and it leads to another revelation about Harry. When Malfoy uses a spell to attack Harry with a giant snake, Harry finds out that the snake listens to him. We’re reminded of how the snake at the zoo in the first book responded to Harry in much the same way. A neat little connection.

The other students are not cool with this. They are completely weirded out. Turns out that the ability to talk to snakes, called being a Parselmouth, was something that Salazar Slytherin was famous for. It’s just one more thing that connects Harry to these attacks and leads everyone to believe that Harry might be the Heir of Slytherin. Top that off with the fact that the Sorting Hat had wanted to put him in Slytherin originally, and Harry starts really wondering if he could be related to Slytherin somehow.

Rumors spread all over school, especially in Hufflepuff. At the Dueling Club, Harry’s attempts to call off the snake looked like he was driving the snake towards a Hufflepuff Muggleborn named Justin. Which he wasn’t, of course. Harry was trying to make the snake go away. But if someone was rushing at me and a large snake, speaking a weird hissing language, I’d be weirded out too. The Hufflepuffs, and most of the rest of the school, don’t trust Harry at all anymore. It’s really sad. Harry had found a home at Hogwarts and is back to being treated like a pariah. I feel so bad for him!

The next attack, of course, happens soon after Harry confronts a group of these Hufflepuffs, and of course, Justin is one of the people who was attacked. This time it’s different, though. There is another victim.

Nearly-Headless Nick

How does something attack a ghost? How do you hurt someone that’s already dead? This is the creepiest part of the story yet!

Harry is caught at the scene of the crime, yet again. Wrong place, wrong time. We know he’s innocent, but it also looks really, really bad. Professor McGonagall tells Harry that there is nothing else she can do.

They marched in silence around a corner and she stopped before a large and extremely ugly stone gargoyle.

“Lemon drop!” she said. This was evidently a password, because the gargoyle sprang suddenly to life and hopped aside as the wall behind him split in two. Even full of dread for what was coming, Harry couldn’t fail to be amazed. Behind the wall was a spiral staircase that was moving smoothly upward, like an escalator. As he and Professor McGonagall stepped onto it, Harry heard the wall thud closed behind them. They rose upward in circles, higher and higher, until at last, slightly dizzy, Harry saw a gleaming oak door ahead, with a brass knocker in the shape of a griffin.

He knew now where he was being taken. This must be where Dumbledore lived.

Oh boy, here we go!

Tune in next time for Chapter 12!

Teaser Tuesday · Top Ten Tuesdays

Teasers & Top Tens – 2/19/19


Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Purple Booker. Here are the rules if you want to play along:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

“I heard tell of a rich merchant,” one of the sailors offered, “who laughed at the ship’s crew for whistling, and no sooner had he done, than a great wind came up and the ship heeled hard about, and he was thrown over the side and dashed on the rocks of La Dolorosa.”

Kushiel’s Chosen by Jacqueline Carey

Currently sailing the high seas in this book, and with that comes the superstitions of sailors. I do love her writing, but these books are very much a slow burn.

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic:

Top Ten Books That I Loved

With Fewer Than 2000 Ratings on GoodReads

I really like this topic, as there are so many wonderful books out there that just don’t get the exposure. I also absolutely love how easy GoodReads makes it to find these books.

  1. The Lost Brigade by Paul Kelly – Full disclosure, this book was written by a friend of mine, but it’s really good! And it only has 6 ratings on GoodReads! He self-published this, and I just don’t think it got a wide range of viewers. Wide scope epic fantasy with a new twist that I quite enjoyed.
  2. The Magician of Wall Street by Minta Hall – Full disclosure, this is also written by a friend of mine and former critique partner back when I was writing. This is a cute, sexy read and a lot of fun, but only has 18 ratings.
  3. The Casters series by Norah Wilson and Heather Doherty – There are four books in this series, and the most GoodReads ratings one of them has is 220. I still need to read the last book (it wasn’t out when I read the series originally, but it’s out now!) I did write reviews for the first three (Comes the Night, Enter the Nightand Embrace the Night).
  4. Terrestrial Magic by Marina Ermakova – I recently reviewed this one for NetGalley (check out my review here), and it only just came out in January, so maybe that’s why it only has 12 ratings so far. It was really good, so here’s another shout out!
  5. The Heartland Trilogy by Chuck Wendig – These books got a bit more exposure, since Chuck has more of a following, but the first book is the only one to even come close to 2000 ratings (it only had 1828). The others are much lower. This is a fun sci-fi adventure and just a good time all around. Reviews here.
  6. A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz – This may have been my first ever NetGally ARC, a long time ago. I remember we reviewed this back when we had our podcast, but I also posted a review here. Fun steampunk journey, but only 1797 ratings so far on GoodReads.
  7. Division of the Marked by March McCarron – I got this one from BookBub a while ago and really enjoyed it. New fantasy with excellent characters, only 938 ratings. I read this back when I wasn’t blogging much, so sadly, no review to link to, but believe me, it’s really good.
  8. Anger is a Gift by Mark Oshiro – Another fairly new book, but with only 1652 ratings so far. As you can read in my review here, I was already a fan of Mark’s websites, but this book blew me away.
  9. My So-Called Afterlife series by Jamie Ayers – Another BookBub find, this one went from being a sweet, coming-of-age tale of a girl dealing with depression and loss to being a battle between angels and devils and everything else. Such a surprise and very well written, but only 979 ratings on GoodReads. See my review here.
  10. Minutes Before Sunset by Shannon A. Thompson – This was a fun read, plus it was the first time I got to take part in a book tour, which was great. This only has 588 ratings, but it’s a fun, urban fantasy, with elements of paranormal romance. You can see my review here. The sequel is really good too.

That’s it for my teasers and top ten list this week! Share yours in comments!