Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – Chapter 12 (#PotterheadReadAlong19)

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In Chapter 12, the boys are unhappy with Hermione, Harry has his first dementor lessons with Lupin, we find out more about dementors than we ever wanted to, and the Firebolt is back, baby! Let’s go!

Losing the Firebolt has had some implications. The boys are none to happy with Hermione, even though Hermione maintains that she was in the right and just trying to look out for Harry. Oliver Wood is stunned that Harry got such a wonderful broom for Christmas and completely dismayed that McGonagall won’t give it back yet.

Classes are back in session though, and that means the promised anti-dementor classes with Lupin. They can’t practice on a real dementor, obviously, but Lupin is able to find another boggart in the castle that will be a good substitute. The only way to drive one off is a very advanced spell called a Patronus Charm which produces (you guessed it) a Patronus. What is a Patronus, you might ask?

“. . . a kind of anti-dementor – a guardian that acts as a shield between you and the dementor.”

“The Patronus is a kind of positive force, a projection of the very things that the dementor feeds upon – hope, happiness, the desire to survive – but it cannot feel despair, as real humans can, so the dementors can’t hurt it.”

It’s a tough spell that even full grown wizards can’t all do. There is an incantation and a happy memory needed to power the Patronus, but it’s still super hard. But this is Harry Potter! He can do it! No. No, he can’t. The boggart-dementor takes him out. The happy memory Harry chose (flying for the first time) was not enough. Lupin gives Harry some chocolate to feel better. Harry is determined to get this – what if dementors show up at his next Quidditch match!

The second attempt (with the memory of winning the House Cup last year) also doesn’t work, and now, Harry not only hears his mother pleading for his life, he hears his father telling them to run. This is so hard for Harry! He wants to fight off the dementors . . . but he also is hearing his parents’ voices for the first time since he was a baby. We also find out that Lupin knew James Potter and was friends with him at Hogwarts. This makes sense too, as Lupin has shown a bit of extra concern for Harry – he’s looking after his friend’s kid.

Third try. Memory chosen: the day he found out he was leaving the Dursleys. So happy! And it sort of works. The dementor is there, but so is a silvery cloud thing that the dementor can’t get through. It takes everything he has to keep the silvery cloud up, but it’s enough to keep the dementor away and keep him on his feet. Lupin is very happy about the progress and gives Harry even more chocolate. As he’s eating it, something occurs to Harry.

“Professor Lupin?” he said. “If you knew my dad, you must’ve known Sirius Black as well.”

Lupin turned very quickly.

“What gives you that idea?” he said sharply.

“Nothing – I mean, I just knew they were friends at Hogwarts too . . .”

Lupin’s face relaxed.

“Yes, I knew him,” he said shortly. “Or I thought I did.”

Makes sense. If James and Black were friends, and Lupin was also friends with James, then Lupin would have known Black too.¬† Harry still feels conflicted about hearing his parents and knows that he will never be able to produce a proper Patronus if he keeps wanting to hear their voices. This is so sad! Again, how is this kid not suffering from every PTSD symptom known to man!?!? He finally tells himself to get a grip, that listening to their voices won’t bring them back, and if he wants that Quidditch Cup, he needs to work on this. This kid is so strong, I tell you! I would be nothing but a complete and total mess at this point.

Leading up to the next Quidditch match, a few things happen. For one, Hermione is starting to break under the strain of taking every single class Hogwarts has to offer. Ron can’t figure out how she’s getting to all her classes – many of them are at the same time as the classes they share with her, so how is she attending them? Also, Wood decided to go and ask McGonagall if they could get the Firebolt back and was immediately rejected. Harry keeps asking over and over, and still no. Patronus lessons continue, but the Patronus isn’t getting any stronger. Lupin tells Harry not to worry, he’s doing amazing for such a young wizard, and at least with this cloudy Patronus, Harry will be able to land on the ground and not fall to his almost-death like he did before.

Lupin also gives us some more info on dementors, also known as nightmare fuel. When Harry asks what’s under a dementor’s hood (since he’s never actually seen a dementor’s face), Lupin can’t really explain because very few people know and they aren’t able to tell.

“They call it the Dementor’s Kiss,” said Lupin, with a slightly twisted smile. “It’s what dementors do to those they wish to destroy utterly. I suppose there must be some kind of mouth under there, because they clamp their jaws upon the mouth of the victim and – and suck out his soul.”

AAAHHHHHHH!!!! Mind you, this does not kill the person. They are still alive, just an empty shell. This has always made me wonder what they do with these people. Like, if someone here is sentenced to the death penalty, they are killed and their body either cremated or buried, but what do you do with a criminal who has been deemed severe enough that he gets sentenced to the Dementor’s Kiss after the soul has been sucked out? Is there a pen in Azkaban with a bunch of mindless shell people wandering around? Do they get fed? Can they even eat? Can they talk? Can they do anything? Or do they just wither away to nothing? If so, why don’t they just execute them? This is a creepy line of questioning, so let’s just move on.

Oh, and the Ministry has authorized the dementors to give Black the Dementor’s Kiss if they find him. Harry says he deserves it, but Lupin wonders if anyone really deserves such a fate. It’s a good question, much like the death penalty debates we have here. How far is too far when it comes to punishment of crimes?

Harry finally gets some good news – the Firebolt has been cleared! It’s safe! Harry and Ron agree that they should probably patch things up with Hermione, since she was really looking out for Harry’s safety, but that nice moment is destroyed by the revelation that Scabbers is gone, Ron finds blood on his bedsheets, and with it, several ginger cat hairs. It looks like Crookshanks has finally done it.

See you next time for Chapter 13!

Weekly Wrap-Up

Weekly Wrap-Up – 3/22/19

Weekly Wrap-Up

A bit of a later wrap-up this week, just because my Friday has been CRAZY! My head is spinning a little and I’m still a bit sleepy – although that might have had something to do with being out late last night. One of the local community theaters that I have done shows with in the past is currently doing a production of Mamma Mia. Several friends of mine are in it, so of course, I wanted to go and support them. Plus the show is just pure fun and joy. I don’t usually go out late on a weekday, but all their performances were selling out so fast, it was the only one we could get. So I’m a bit foggy today, oh well. Totally worth it!

In slightly more serious news, my daughter, who I think I’ve mentioned before is having problems at school, has been diagnosed with ADD, inattentive type, in addition to her anxiety disorder and depression. So not only is the anxiety making it hard for her to focus, but the ADD is making it near impossible, which only increases the anxiety and the depression. Fun stuff. She is not a fan of taking any sort of medication, so we are looking into other ways to help.

But enough about serious stuff. This has been a pretty productive week here on the blog! I got my first Nostalgic Reads post up and really enjoyed discussing it in the comments. So many of us grew up with these books! I also got to take part in my very first blog tour! It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a while now, and hopefully, I will get to do another one sometime. Plus, the books I got to review were AWESOME! I have found a new favorite fantasy author!

Reading progress for the week:

  • Blasted through¬†The Shadow Watch¬†and¬†The Rage of Saints¬†by S.A. Klopfenstein. Got both books read in three days. Note to self: when applying for a blog tour, try not to ask for a second book in a series when you haven’t read the first one. Also, don’t sign up for one that has multiple books when you aren’t sure if you can get them done in time. I mean, I did, but it was a challenge.
  • I’ve started slowing down on¬†Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.¬†Only read Chapters 8-10 this week. It’s not because I don’t want to read it – I really do! This week has especially been stressful time-wise, and since I really enjoy doing the Chapter-A-Long posts for them, it takes a little bit extra. I may not be able to finish this one in March for #PotterheadReadAlong19, but I’m still going to try!
  • I started¬†The Wrythe and the Reckoning¬†by Yvonthia Leland for NetGalley. I’ve read Chapters 1 through 2.2. Yes, chapter 2 is split up into 2.1 and 2.2 for some reason. This book is . . . odd. That’s all I’m going to say for now.
  • Made slight progress with¬†Kushiel’s Chosen¬†by Jacqueline Carey. Read Chapters 67-70, which isn’t much, but hey – progress is still progress!
  • Y’all, I didn’t read¬†Empire of Storms¬†by Sarah J. Maas at all this week! I am starting to get fuzzy on some details, so I may need to start that one over after I get through the next couple of NetGalley ARCs.

I’m going to try to get some posts up for Harry Potter over the weekend, but otherwise, I will see everyone back on Monday! Have a great weekend!

nostalgic reads · Uncategorized

Nostalgic Reads: Double Love

Nostalgic Reads

Title: Double Love

Author: Francine Pascal (creator) and Kate Williams

Series: Sweet Valley High #1

Double LoveBlurb: Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield are identical twins at Sweet Valley High. They’re both popular, smart, and gorgeous, but that’s where the similarity ends. Elizabeth is friendly, outgoing, and sincere — nothing like her snobbish and conniving twin. Jessica gets what she wants — at school, with friends, and especially with boys.

This time, Jessica has set her sights on Todd Wilkins, the handsome star of the basketball team — the one boy that Elizabeth really likes. Elizabeth doesn’t want to lose him, but what Jessica wants, Jessica usually gets … even if it ends up hurting her sister.

Meet the Wakefield twins, their guys, and the rest of the gang at Sweet Valley High….

Review: Welcome to my first Nostalgic Reads post! I’ll tell you what, revisiting some of this stuff has been trippy! I was such a different person when I read them before!

First, a little history. This series began in 1983 created by Francine Pascal and then written by a team of ghostwriters There are 143 books in the base series, not counting the Super Editions, Super Thrillers and Magna Editions. This series had several spin-offs, including Sweet Valley Twins (which I also read), Sweet Valley Kids, Sweet Valley High: Senior Year, and Sweet Valley University. 

Now, onto this book. This book has at least six plots going on. Each one of these could easily be a book of it’s own. Those plots are:

  1. The main plot, according to the blurb, which is that Elizabeth likes Todd Wilkins, the captain of the basketball team, but Jessica is going after him like crazy, even though Todd seems to like Elizabeth as well.
  2. Both sisters are pledging to join the Pi Beta sorority, although Jessica is the only one who’s really excited about it.
  3. Their father Ned, a lawyer, might be having an affair with another lawyer, Marianne West, from his law firm.
  4. Their brother Steve has a mystery girlfriend who is revealed to come from a family with a bad reputation.
  5. Jessica has an unfortunate “date” with bad boy Rick Andover which leads to a bar fight and a case of mistaken identity.
  6. The school might lose their football field and the two richest families – the Patmans (old money) and the Fowlers (new money) – are fighting over who takes over the land.

My head is already spinning. I don’t think the other books in the series deal with quite so many plot threads. This may have been just a way to introduce a lot of characters quickly, plus give you a good idea of the town and the school, but boy is it a lot!

The twins. What to say about the twins? Typically, girls who read these books were supposed to identify with one or the other, and I think most probably identified with Elizabeth because she was the bookish twin. Also – Jessica Wakefield is a deeply unlikeable person. I don’t remember disliking her that much when I was younger. I probably, like a lot of young girls, wished I could be more confident like she was: co-captain of the cheerleaders, boys who fall at her feet, the one the whole school practically worships.

But oh my goodness, reading her now. She is such a shallow, lying, manipulative, drama queen! She throws tantrums when she doesn’t get her way. She lies CONSTANTLY. Let’s look at plot #5. She goes on this date with Rick, who gets drunk and gropey, and ends up riding home in a police car after the resulting bar fight gets broken up. The policeman recognizes her last name and knows that his niece goes to school with Elizabeth Wakefield. He doesn’t know that they are twins. So when he drops her off with a warning, and says her name as he tells her goodnight, someone overhears it. Suddenly, the whole school is talking about Elizabeth’s wild night out. Jessica NEVER corrects anyone, claiming that she never hears anyone talk about it. Eventually, she attempts to explain it to Todd, but he thinks she’s just trying to excuse Elizabeth’s “bad behavior” and take the blame.

Jessica also tells Elizabeth that Todd tried to assault her too, just to get back at him for liking someone else and not being attentive enough at the school dance they go to together. Seriously.

The thing is, Elizabeth is clearly the “good girl,” but she also comes off as a complete doormat. She forgives Jessica for anything and everything she does, although she does manage to get some revenge by tricking the student body into throwing Jessica into the school pool. Elizabeth is the writer of the “Eyes and Ears” gossip column in the school paper, but the identity of that person is always kept a secret. If they get discovered, they get dunked. Elizabeth tricks people into thinking that Jessica is her and gets Jessica thrown in the pool instead. It seems like a paltry punishment for all that Jessica does throughout this book, but at least it’s something.

Does this book still hold up? Not necessarily, although it is still highly entertaining, if only for the ridiculousness of it all. We’ll see how some of the other ones stack up.

Books I've Read

BLOG TOUR: The Shadow Watch Series by S.A. Klopfenstein

THE SHADOW WATCH SERIES (1)

Welcome to my very first book tour! I’m so excited! Thank you so much to Rockstar Book Tours for letting me help showcase this amazing series!

Book 1Title: THE SHADOW WATCH (The Shadow Watch #1)

Author: S.A. Klopfenstein

Pub. Date: May 15, 2018

Publisher: Guardian Grey Publishing

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 420

Find it: Goodreads, Amazon, B&N

Blurb: For centuries, the Oshan Empire has ruled the New World with terror and blood. The Watchers have been eradicated, and their sorcery is but a whispered myth. But the heart of magic beats on, and as it surges back to life, three young people will determine the fate of the world…

Tori Burodai, a strong-willed slave girl. Her magic could ignite a revolution, but only if she resists the ruler who wants to use her powers to restore the empire to its former glory.

Darien Redvar, the idealistic soldier she loves. His rage leads him down a dark path to power that could turn him against the one person he cares for.

Kale Andovier, a lordling rebel with a torturous past. His quest for a weapon of dark sorcery will thrust him into a twisted game of power that could change the world forever.

Will the return of magic transform the New World, or bring it to ruin?

Review: This is my kind of fantasy! From the very first chapter, I knew I was going to love this story and these characters. It reminded me so much of the first classic fantasy authors I read, way back in the day. Far-reaching and epic in scope, this story keeps the adventure coming from beginning to end.

Let’s start with some specifics, beginning with Tori. She’s the unlikely, and sometimes unwilling, hero. Her life is hard, from coming up from a slave to finally coming into her power. I love when characters in fantasy stories have a wonderful sense of realness to them. This author is not afraid to make his characters tragically flawed (which you see especially in Darien and Kale), but that just draws you more into their stories and how they flow together.

I really loved the magic system, with the Watchers and the Morphs. None of it was completely original, but it all flowed so well together. And the villain, Chancellor Cyrus Maro is chilling. A complete sociopath and incredibly power hungry. This story had great pacing overall. It never lulled and always kept me turning the pages to find out what would happen next. I read it in literally a day and a half, and was very glad to get to jump to the next book immediately. Speaking of which . . .

Book 2 (1)Title: THE RAGE OF SAINTS (The Shadow Watch #2)

Author: S.A. Klopfenstein

Pub. Date: March 26, 2019

Publisher: Guardian Grey Publishing

Formats: Paperback, eBook

Pages: 507

Find it: Goodreads, Amazon

Blurb: The Shadow Watch has been undone. Their captain lies in the dungeons of the White Citadel, and the Gallows Girl has disappeared. Most of the surviving Watchers have joined the chancellor’s new magical army, the Sky Guard, led by Darien Redvar, but the Gallows Boy is shaken from the return of the monsters of the Old World, and he must soon choose, once and for all, where his loyalties lie.

Tori and Mischa trek to the Great White North with an Alyut shaman, who believes Tori is the one who will bring Restoration to his people. A resistance is growing in the North, but Tori may not be the god the people are looking for, and the price of revolution may cost Tori her heart as well as her life.

Meanwhile, another threat grows in strength. Old World monsters are rising up across the New World, and no one knows how they’ve returned. As nations ready themselves for a magical war, their return threatens to change everything.

New alliances are set in place, new friendships are forged, new loves kindled. But no one is safe, for there can be no war without betrayal.

Review: This book picks up right where book one left off, and thank goodness! I needed to know what was going to happen! I love when second books in a series are just as good, if not better, than the first, and that was the case with this one. I love how the world was expanded even more. We get to see the Great White North, the Southern Isles, and more of Osha. The cultures are all beautiful and rich; it’s wonderful to see how the characters we got to know in the first book navigate these new terrains.

I also loved how this book spent some time with Mischa as a main character, since she was one of my favorites from book #1.

Things with Tori and Darien are also wonderfully complicated. Starting off as friends, becoming enemies, and now . . . who knows? So many questions still to be answered. Is there a third book coming out? I sure hope so!

I’m not going to give specifics, because I don’t want to spoil it, but this story twists and turns and surprised me several times. The entire final act is one big roller coaster ride and you never know who exactly to trust or who is double crossing who. It kept me guessing the entire time, which I love.

Overall, these are two wonderful books to kick off this series. S.A. Klopfenstein is a great new author keeping with the traditions of fantasy, while at the same time adding his own unique spin to the genre. His writing is sharp, expressive, and very exciting. I would highly recommend both of these books for any fantasy fan!

Meet the Author!

stephen-low-qS.A. Klopfenstein grew up on a steady dose of Tolkien and Star Wars. As a child, he wrote his first story about a sleepwalking killer who was executed by lethal injection.

He lives in the American West with his wife and their dog, Iorek Byrnison. He can be found exploring the peaks of the Rocky Mountains, or daring the halls of the middle school where he teaches Language Arts.

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Giveaway Time!

Be sure to enter the giveaway, where one lucky winner will win copies of both THE SHADOW WATCH and THE RAGE OF SAINTS! You can enter through a Rafflecopter giveaway, just click on the link! Available to the U.S. only.

 

Check out the other stops on the tour!

Week One:

3/18/2019-¬†Lone Tree Reviews–¬†Excerpt

3/18/2019-¬†Literary Gold–¬†Spotlight

3/19/2019-¬†Kelly P’s Blog–¬†Excerpt

3/19/2019-¬†TMBA Corbett Tries to Write–¬†Interview

3/20/2019-¬†Life With No Plot–¬†Review

3/20/2019-¬†The Hermit Librarian–¬†Guest Post

3/21/2019-¬†Adventures Thru Wonderland–¬†Review

3/21/2019-¬†Graced with Books–¬†Interview

3/22/2019-¬†Lauren is Reading–¬†Review

3/22/2019-¬†‚ĚßDefining Ways‚Ěß–¬†Guest Post

Week Two:

3/25/2019-¬†Sincerely Karen Jo–¬†Excerpt

3/25/2019-¬†BookHounds YA–¬†Guest Post

3/26/2019-¬†Colorimetry¬†–¬†Guest Post

3/26/2019-¬†Two Chicks on Books–¬†Interview

3/27/2019-¬†Owl Always Be Reading–¬†Excerpt

3/27/2019-¬†Jaime’s World–¬†Excerpt

3/28/2019-¬†D. Books and Reviews–¬†Review

3/28/2019-¬†4covert2overt¬†‚ėľ¬†A Place In The Spotlight¬†‚ėľ–¬†Excerpt

3/29/2019-¬†Abooktropolis–¬†Review

3/29/2019-¬†Lisa Loves Literature–¬†Excerpt

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday – 3/20/19

WWW New

WWW Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. Three questions, three answers. Let’s go!

What are you currently reading?

I just started¬†The Wrythe and the Reckoning by Yvonthia Leland. This is another NetGalley ARC, so I’m really excited to get started on it. I am making slow progress with¬†Empire of Storms¬†by Sarah J. Maas¬†and¬†Kushiel’s Chosen¬†by Jacqueline Carey because I had to set some stuff aside this week. For a good reason though!

What did you recently finish?

I got approved for my first blog tour, in case you missed my post this morning, which was super exciting!! It also meant that I needed to quickly read through two books¬†The Shadow Watch¬†and¬†The Rage of Saints¬†by S.A. Klopfenstein. They were both so good, y’all! I was so excited to get to review them, which is why I dropped everything to get started.

What do you think you’ll read next?

Other than continuing with the series I’m working on, the next book I will probably be reading is¬†The Raven’s Tale¬†by Cat Winters. This is another ARC, due out April 16th.

That’s what my reading week looks like. What are you up to?

Chapter-A-Long

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – Chapter 10 (#PotterheadReadAlong19)

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In Chapter 10, Harry returns to class, Lupin returns to teaching, and Harry receives a very special present from the Weasley twins. Let’s go!

Harry spends a great deal of time in the hospital wing, doesn’t he. He should have his own reserved cot there. It also gives him a great deal of time to think about this Grim that seems to follow him. He’s seen it twice and both times, he’s had close brushes with death. It’s scary. Also scary – the dementors. Harry has figured out that he is hearing his mother’s voice screaming and trying to protect him from Voldemort whenever the dementors are near. That’s not depressing at all.

On a happier note, Lupin is back! Which is great, except he looks awful. The class protests Snape’s lessons, particularly assigning a big essay on werewolves, a subject they hadn’t even covered. Lupin assures them they don’t have to do it and continues their lessons. Harry stays behind after class to speak to him, asking him about the dementors. He worries that they seem to affect him worse than anyone else.

“It has nothing to do with weakness,” said Professor Lupin sharply, as though he had read Harry’s mind. “The dementors affect you worse than the others because there are horrors in your past that the others don’t have.”

It makes sense. Very few kids at the school have gone through all that Harry has, even the parts he was too young to remember clearly. That’s what dementors do and how they keep the prisoners at Azkaban captive: they feed off of happiness and hope and leave you with the worst of your memories. Even Muggles can feel their presence, even if they can’t see them. Harry asks Lupin if there is any way to fend them off, since Lupin was able to do so on the train. Lupin claims not to be an expert, but he agrees to try and teach Harry what to do.

Christmas at Hogwarts! I would so love to spend Christmas at Hogwarts. I wonder if the theme park down in Florida does something special for the holidays. They probably do. I actually got to go once several years ago. It’s really, really cool, and they’ve added a bunch of stuff since then.

Harry is really bummed that there is another Hogsmeade weekend and he still can’t go. The morning of the trip, Harry sees Fred and George Weasley hiding. They motion for him to come over and give him, what they call, “the secret of our success.” It looks like a spare bit of parchment, but it is soooooo much more than that!

And at once, thin ink lines began to spread like a spider’s web from the point that George’s wand had touched. They joined each other, they crisscrossed, they fanned into every corner of the parchment; then words began to blossom across the top, great, curly green words, that proclaimed:

Messrs. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs

Purveyors of Aids to Magical Mischief-Makers

are proud to present

THE MARAUDER’S MAP

This thing is so cool. It’s a full map of Hogwarts Castle and the grounds surrounding it. Not only that, this thing shows where everyone is in the castle by little dots that move around with names hovering over them. This is partially how Fred and George have gotten away with so much – they know everything about the castle, including secret passages, one of which leads right into the candy shop at Hogsmeade. They both agree that, since Harry is having such a rough time of it, they should give the map to him.

And it works! He emerges in the basement of Honeydukes, sneaks up the stairs and startles Ron and Hermione, who were both shopping there. Hermione thinks Harry should turn it in, but Ron thinks it’s amazing and is irritated that his brothers never gave it to him. Hermione is also worried that Harry will get in trouble, either at school or because Black is still on the loose, but there are notices all over the town saying that Hogsmeade is being patrolled every night by the dementors and nothing has turned up yet.

They decide to go to the Three Broomsticks for butterbeer. While there, they see not only some of their teachers (McGonagall, Flitwick and Hagrid), but the Minister himself. Ron and Hermione shove Harry under the table and Hermione moves a Christmas tree over slightly to hide them. While there, Harry overhears more information than he ever wanted about Sirius Black.

Turns out, Black was James Potter’s best friend. They were inseparable at school and, when James married Lilly, Black was their best man. He was even named Harry’s godfather when Harry was born. Even after that, somehow, for some reason, Black betrayed them. He turned to Voldemort. The Potters went into hiding, using a Fidelius Charm to keep their location secret, and Black gave up their location to Voldemort. What happened next is history. The Potters were killed, except for Harry, who somehow survived.

Hagrid, in particular, is furious to learn this.

“I met him!” growled Hagrid. “I musta bin the last ter see him before he killed all them people! It was me what rescued Harry from Lilly an’ James’s house after they was killed! Jus’ got him outta the ruins, poor little thing, with a great slash across his forehead, an’ his parents dead . . . an’ Sirius Black turns up, on that flyin’ motorbike he used ter ride. Never occurred ter me what he was doin’ there. I didn’ know he’d bin Lily an’ James’s Secret-Keeper. Thought he’d jus’ heard the news o’ You-Know-Who’s attack an’ come ter see what he could do. White an’ shakin’, he was. An’ yeh know what I did? I COMFORTED THE MURDERIN’ TRAITOR!” Hagrid roared.

First, that is heartbreaking. We all know how tenderhearted Hagrid is and this must really be a blow to him. Second, it is really hard to type the way Hagrid speaks. Just throwing that out there.

So that’s where Hagrid’s flying motorcycle from¬†Sorcerer’s Stone¬†came from. It had belonged to Sirius Black. Black had originally tried to get Hagrid to give Harry to him, but when Hagrid told him Dumbledore’s plan, Black gave him the motorcycle so he could get there faster. But that’s not all. The Ministry tried to catch up with him, but it wasn’t the Ministry who finally confronted him. It was another one of the Potters’ friends – Peter Pettigrew. Known for being hopeless at magic while he was at Hogwarts and “hero-worshipped” James and Sirius, Pettigrew was completely destroyed in the incident. The larges piece of him they found was a finger. Eww.

So here’s the thing that’s weird. Black has been in Azkaban surrounded by dementors for many, many years, and yet, he hasn’t seemed to have lost his mind. Fudge had seen him during his last inspection and Black seemed very . . . normal. Spoke rationally. Asked if he could have the Minister’s newspaper so he could do the crossword puzzle. This is not typical behavior for someone in Azkaban. At all. The dementors, with all their hope-sucking power, haven’t had an effect on him. And they STILL don’t know how he broke out.

Soon after this, they leave. And Ron and Hermione now have to deal with their shell-shocked friend under the table.

See you next time for Chapter 11!