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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Title: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Author: J. K. Rowling
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books (Imprint oh Scholastic Inc.)    Date:1998

Physically, this book and its format closely resembles the first volume of the series. The differences lie in the color of the binding, the image of the dust jacket, and the images at the head of each chapter. Like in the first book, these images related to material within the story and are somewhat fancifully depicted. I have reason to believe that the same artist was contracted to produce the dust jacket artwork from the first book (and I suspect they continue to do the artwork for the remainder of the series) because the stylistic techniques used are very closely related.

Content wise, this is at the same reading level as the first volume and directed at readers of the young adult demographic. The mysterious figure of Lord Voldemort becomes more of a threating image in this book, leading to a confrontation of sorts at the conclusion. The way that Rowling portrays the conflicts between the children attending Hogwarts is handled with a deft hand. The continuing rivalry between Harry Potter and Draco Malfoy is still presented but it becomes a secondary focus in this book, with the primary focus on solving the mysteries of the Chamber of Secrets.

Something I enjoyed in this book is how Rowling portrays the development of Harry Potter's friendship with Ron Weasley. It is charming to see how the two boys work together and interact with each other. Along with Hermoine Granger, Harry Potter and his friends prove to be an interesting engine of action and plot with out coming off as contrived. While the book did not grab my attention and really move me, I can appreciate how young readers would find then characters of the heroes of this series highly identifiable. Rowling does a very good job of portraying how these youthful figures interact with their world and the pressures of this age demographic.

Rating: 7 / 10