Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Spoilers)

I just wanted to see what you guys may of thought about the new Harry Potter book. It was a great read, state your opinions here after you’ve completed the book. Don’t read below if you haven’t finished the book beacuse you will be sad and cry for hours. Below are some points/thoughts/ramblings I came up with after finishing it:

Concerning Dumbledore, Snape, and all that jazz -
Snape made an unbreakable vow with Malfoy’s mother that he would do everything he could to keep Malfoy safe - especially from Voldemort, who would kill Malfoy if he did not die in an attempt on Dumbledore’s life. It is my belief that Dumbledore knew about the unbreakable vow because he knew everything else about Malfoy’s plans and attempts.
At one point in HBP, Hagrid slips up and tells Harry that he heard Snape and Dumbledore arguing. I think this was over the very situation that happens at the end of the book - if there was a situation in which Snape or Malfoy may end up dying and this could be prevented by killing Dumbledore, then Snape must do it.
I don’t think Dumbledore was pleading for mercy, he was pleading for Snape to kill him. As hard as that may be to even consider, Snape may be the most valuable resource to those against Voldemort in the end. I think in the 7th book, there will be a crucial moment in which Snape will either save Harry’s life, or contribute to Voldemort’s demise in some fashion.

This kind of theory fits the way Rowling twists her stories around… if I took the way I read it straightforward, well, I’d be wrong. Rowling masks her writing as straight but behind that mask is a twisting story.

A friend of mine threw out an idea that possibly Dumbledore didn’t die at all, and that it was someone under the influence of Polyjuice potion. I’m no HP expert, but I’d believe that the person would still retain the form of whoever they were until the potion wore off, which would probably be within the hour. However, if you noticed, Dumbledore’s body was not viewed at the funeral, it was covered even when Hagrid carried him to the tomb. All theory, of course.

I just can’t see this being all plain as day and straightforward. Dumbledore wouldn’t have gone down without a fight unless he meant to… I believe Dumbledore froze Harry behind the door in order to a) protect Harry b) protect Malfoy and c) protect Snape. It was all just a form of protecting in various ways. Harry no doubt would’ve just gone charging screaming in shooting spells. Whatever, playing the hero role that he does quite well. Had Malfoy died, Snape would have too. So really, in the end, it was just to the benefit of everyone that Harry stayed behind the door against his will and under his cloak.

All the Harry and Hermione shippers - your luck has run out. It’s Ron + Hermione… and it’s so painfully obvious.

I guess the only thing to do now is wait until book 7.

Thank you J.K. Rowling for giving us all such a great story. :]

Okay here goes my thoughts.
I think that Dumbledore did indeed die. It think he froze Harry to protect him and not anybody else. I don’t think that it was somebody using Polyjuice Potion because there was not a time in during the last parts where Dumbledore could have switched with somebody else.And just to throw out a question, who in the world is R.A.B? I’m guessing that we will find out in the 7th book or it might be someone that was mentioned only a couple of times but is very important. But it was still a very good book, the best in my opinion.

Remember the locket from book five that Harry found in Sirius’s house? I believe that Sirius’s father took it in those few days before Voldermort killed him.

We may have mutual friends, because this is the same theory I shared with a few of my friends. I believe that Dumbledore and Snape took Polyjuice potion to obtain the others identity.

This is a good point, but what about the liquid Dumbledore had to drink in the cave? Possibly a potion to extend the polyjuice potions life? Or quite possibly a poison that does not allow your body to change form. Seeing as Snape is the Half-Blood Prince and he came up with the spells and potion shortcuts, it is quite possible he could have invented one of these potions.

Just my $0.02.

I have to agree with you Ryan, Rowling is a brilliant writer and I think in the next book there will be more explanation as to what REALLY went on. The main reason I think this is that in all the books she has made Dumbledore out to be smart and observant, and he has always trusted Snape. Every time we thought Snape was “the bad guy” he always came back to save Harry. I don’t think there is any way that Snape just switched sides without Dumbledore at least having a clue. I, too, can not wait for the next book (even though right after finishing I was swearing to Jay I would never read another Harry Potter book again :p)

Unless Rowling is introducing a new character (which I would hate if she did that so late in the books), then it’s a good chance that it is in fact Sirius’s brother Regulus Black. He was mentioned in Order of the Phoenix and apparently was killed for trying to switch sides (from evil to good).

That’s my theory on R.A.B. - I think it’s really cool how Rowling is tying in the founders of the school again with the Horcruxes.

I wonder if Hogwarts will even reopen next year. But even if it does, Harry said he wouldn’t return (at least not for schooling). I bet he’d still come back to converse with Dumbledore’s painting though. Becoming an Auror is too obvious, so who knows what’s going to happen in the end.

sooo i finished on saturday lol few hours after i got it and was waiting for someone to start a thread on this b/c i couldn’t ruin it…but since ryan you already jumped in now and have opened it up…here’s my two sense…

snape…always had in the other books leads that he’s like a double agent…
and with it being the 6th book it had to come out and the death of Dumbledore seemed like it had to happen… but yes i’ll go on ryan’s friend’s theory…it seems so unreal…dumbledore was one of the best there was… and snape yes always has been helping harry… even though he said in the beginning…he was arranging for it all to happen…but there has to be more…

now things w/ harry and hermonine…yeah i always since the beginning figure it would be her w/ ron… and well yeah it is obvious sooo bad now…

the way to destroy Voldemort… well is a great idea… she made the stories even more connect and pieces fall together… she is a great writer and all…i will agree with everyone… it’s just one series that we’ve got hooked and wanna know what happens… the 7th book i’m sure will knock our socks off… i can’t argue which book is the best but i’ve enjoyed reading them all…

I hate to be a party-pooper but I really thought Rowling was uncharacteristically obvious in this one. It just didn’t seem quite as thrilling as all of the rest leading up to it. Yes, I do realize that they are 16 and 17 now and looooooove is supposed to be such a big thing but between that and the gore, I guess I just didn’t understand where she was going.
I suppose I liked it more when she stuck to the action and allowed the reader’s mind to wander as she described the effects of a potion or spell instead of telling the reader flat out.
Nonetheless she has been as thorough and creative as ever. The only thing I question technically is where Gryffindor’s ruby-filled hour glass was first mentioned. Granted, it has been some time since I last read any of them, but it didn’t even set off a mental alarm as to where it was first written about.

To my very best knowledge, the hourglasses were first directly mentioned in the 5th book when Snape tried to take points from Harry but there no rubies left to take. Correct me if I’m wrong.

No, I believe they were first mentioned in the first book, at the point where all the other Gryffindors are shocked to discover that a lot of the rubies have disappeared from their hourglass when Harry, Hermione and Neville lose 150 points for being caught out at night.

I don’t know about you, but when I finished HBP, the first words out of my mouth were “What the (explicative), JK Rowling?? Why did you have to leave such a huge cliffhanger???”

Now on to the theorizing…
I agree with most people that R.A.B. is Regalus Black, Sirius’ brother. It makes fairly good sense, and can be connected with an earlier passage in the series.

I think Dumbledore did in fact die, and he was begging to Snape to kill him. The polyjuice theory just seems too implausible for me to believe. Dumbledore knew about the Unbreakable Vow, so to help Snape (lord knows why), he sacrificed himself. Harry was frozen so that he could not intervene and potentially get killed.

A friend of mine pointed me to this post on LiveJournal.com:

I agree that Dumbledore did in fact die, and that he had an agreement with Snape for Snape to kill him.

However, I wouldn’t be surprised if in book 7 he contacts Harry somehow and explains it all to him.

I think this is one of the reasons Snape treats Harry so bad:
Snape and Dumbledore are/were in cahoots over Voldemort’s demise, but Snape always get the short end of the stick, because he’s an ex-death eater. To top it all off, the guy he has to help is the son of the guy who tormented him throughout school. Basically, “I ruin my life and career for this kid??”

Ah well. Now we wait another two years to find out.


But why would Voldemort have thought of that when he was designing his defenses? He surely wouldn’t have wanted to help the person drinking the potion.

R.A.B must be someone important, as they have one of the horcrux’s. There has to be another mystery party as well, since Dumbledore stated there would be absolutely no way for one person to have drank the potion and retrieved the horcrux. They must have been pretty powerful wizards to discover a way into the cave, and retrieve the locket.

The whole romance thing was really lame… it didn’t seem to me like it fit well at all

We still don’t know why Dumbledore trusted Snape so much… there has to have been a good reason, as he never trusted Voldemort from the moment he met him.

It would be incredibly weird for Rowling to spend six books developing all the characters at Hogwarts, and then just drop the vast majority of them out of the final book.

Cory remember the note in the fake Hocrux

R.A.B. could have very well changed to liquid in the basin. Snape would have known that he was defying Voldemort. (If R.A.B is actually Regulus Black) And if Snape was already on the side of The Order of the Phoenix, he could have given him th potion to replace the old one with. It may not make complete sense, but its an idea.

First off, this was BY FAR my favourite book of all six so far … moving the third book to second place. I think this was mostly a transition book leading up to everything that is going to happen in the next book.

Cory: Dumbledore trusted Snape because Smape told him that it was he who had told Voldemort about the prophecy. I don’t quite understand how that makes Dumbledore trust him, but it’s the reason that he gives Harry. I think there is something more to it though. Think maybe Snape had to do something to prove his loyalty to Dumbledore?

About the couples:
Ron and Hermione: oh so painfully obvious. Has been hinted at since Goblet of Fire.
Harry and Ginny: meh … could be worse …
Bill and Fleur: never been a big fan of Fleur
Cutest Couple Award: Tonks and Lupin

About RAB:
Somebody beat me to saying it but I think RAB is Regulus and the potion that had to be drank was some sort of tracing potion. Because Voldemort knows he isn’t the best in the world, and it seems to me he is insecure and that is why he needs the trophies (I think Dumbledore mentioned something like that). Anyways, I say it was a tracing potion so that he could find whoever got past all the curses and find out how they did that. That being said, Dumbledore did say that once they destroyed the Horcruxe, Voldemort wouldn’t know, but I think he was wrong.
Also, if it is not Regulus, it could be someone knew. As in Borgin or Burkes. Or also, in the Slug’s Club, there is Marcus Belby who clearly has family connections if he was there. And Katie Bell’s last name also started with B.
But also a point to remember: “The world is not separated into good and evil. The Order vs. The Death Eaters” - Sirius. (or something along those lines). In which case, RAB could be someone entirely new. If it is, I think it was someone who went to Hogwarts with Tom Riddle or was in the orphanage with him maybe? But someone from his childhood.

About changing the potion (was mentioned in an earlier post):
I disagree because when Harry tried to fill it with water for Dumbledore to drink, it wouldn’t. So why would it fill with anything else? And the note only said RAB, not RAB and SS (Severus Snape).

About Snape being the Half Blood Prince:
I think there is more to it than just that. It reveals that he is an extremely powerful wizard and that even though he is head of Slytherin and a Death Eater (or at least he was and was accepted by Voldemort as one), he isn’t a pure blood. And I think the fact that he is half Muggle is extremely significant.

About Snape killing Dumbledore:
For some reason, my gut says Snape is evil. The unbreakable vow did not mean that he was forced to kill Dumbledore. It means that if he didn’t, Snape would die. But, if Snape hadn’t killed Dumbledore one of the other Death Eaters would have killed Snape because they would know he was a traitor. And then one would have killed Dumbledore. But Snape is a pretty powerful wizard and I think he could have taken the 3 and a half Death Eaters in the room. The half being Malfoy.

**Which brings me to my next point and predictions for the next book:**I say Malfoy turns good (and if the world was perfect he would fall in love with Hermione). But, regardless, he did not want to kill Dumbledore, and no matter what he said on the train to the other Slytherins or what he says to his mother, Voldemort, or Death Eaters, he isn’t coldhearted enough to be a murderer.

I also say Harry kills Snape. Whether Snape is evil or good, Harry hates him too much. Not just for Dumbledore, but also for everything Snape put him through, everything he has said about James and Sirius, and mostly for telling Voldemort the prophecy that made him kill James and Lily. So now he’s reached his breaking point and will kill Snape before he ever truly finds out if Snape was actually good or evil.

I also say Harry dies next book. Yeah yeah she won’t make one of the kids die, but I think he will because it will be the only way for him to get rid of Voldemort once and for all.

As for will Hogwarts stay open? I think it will. For the sake of Dumbledore. He wouldn’t have wanted it to close. I think the structure of it will change greatly and there will be a lot fewer students, but I think it will remain open.

My guesses on the 6 Horcruxes:

  1. The Locket (Something of Slytherin’s)
  2. The Cup (Something of Hufflepuff’s)
  3. The ring (Something of his own descent)
  4. The Diary
  5. Nagini (the snake)
  6. This has to be some place obvious, and I am thinking Hogwarts because it was such a big place of his life. The only place he ever felt at home and wanted to return to. Also, he wanted a teaching post there and was refused twice, though Dumbledore never found out why he wanted it so bad. If this last one isn’t in Hogwarts, than maybe Borgin and Burkes because of his job there.

Also a point to notice, but the DADA teacher didn’t last for a year again.

Here is what I I think will have a huge significance next book but don’t know why or how:
Aragog’s dying is a big deal I think
Kreacher and Dobby
Krum will come back I think
Cho will come back again
Krum and Cho possibly??

I noticed in this book there were a lot of unanswered questions that were supposed to be answered. JKR said after Order of the Phoenix that in the next book we would find out that there is more to Aunt Petunia that meets the eye and why it is so important that Harry looks exactly like James, but has his mother’s eyes?

And throughout the whole of the Half Blood Prince, one question bothered me: Who is guarding Azkaban?? It can’t be the Dementors because they follow Voldemort now. It can’t be Aurors because in a battle of a Death Eater vs an Auror, it can go either way.

Anyways, those are my thoughts on the sixth HP. I heard JKR has the seventh one written already so that means only one more year til it’s released and we don’t have to wait for her to get over writer’s block or anything. The movie of the fourth book is out on November 18th!!! www.gobletoffire.com


EDIT: everyone seems to be ruling out the possibility that RAB could be a she.

On the couples…

George: haha and harry + ginny…odd combo to me
Friend: you talk about them like they`re an entree at panda express. ._.’
George: yea they’re good with a side of orange chicken
George: o.O
Friend: great. :smiley:
George: haha the other combos were nice though…wrapped eels submerged in each other

I thought it seemed really out of place, but sort of expected. I seem to sense that as the books have progressed, they have been more “fantastic movie scene possibility” types, as if Rowling was thinking “hmm this would be cool to see in a movie.”

He did give that as a reason. but I don’t see how Dumbledore can unconditionally trust him because of that. There has to be something more.

Call me stupid, but…The only thing that really really concerned me was how the couples ended up… I don’t like the idea of Ron and Hermione from the beginning… I suppose red hair is cute, but argh… Ginny and Harry… plah…

I really think that Dumbledore did die because his portrait did appear inside the headmaster’s office. As for JK Rowling being too obvious, I don’t think that is the case. She knows what she is doing and I think that she would have anticipated everyone guessing what was going to happen next. As a result, I don’t think that it will be anything that we can guess. But like it was said before, that is just my $.02.

I think that Dumbledore knew even before he left in search of the horcrux that he was going to die that night. When Harry was taking Dumbledore back through the caves, Dumbledore implied that he would trust Harry with his life. If this is true, why wouldn’t he let Harry come and help him? I think the reason is that he knew that Harry would find a way to succeed against the death eaters and save him. This would be against Dumbledore’s plans because he was considering the prophecy. The prophecy says that Harry, alone, would have to be the one to kill Voldemort. If Dumbledore lives, Harry would be too dependent on him and would never go in search of those horcruxes w/o him. As a result, the prophecy would not be fulfilled because it would not be Harry alone defeating Voldemort. Dumbledore said in OOTP that his weakness was that he cared for Harry too much. The only way to fix this would be to eliminate himself. Dumbledore said that he could trust Harry, I think he trusts him enough to be able to fulfill the prophecy.

As for Harry becoming an auror, I don’t think so. I think that he will end up doing what nobody else could. He will become a teacher at Hogwarts and will teach his favorite class. No other teacher could last for more than 1 year when teaching defense against the dark arts. I think taht job was meant for Harry and this will eventually be realized.

Snape is a very complex character and it is hard to tell which side he is on. When he shouted “Don’t call me a coward!” to Harry, this raised a flag to me. I think that Snape very reluctantly killed Dumbledore. It makes sense b/c in the OOTP, he was the one who alerted the Order about Harry’s actions. If it weren’t for him, Voldemort would have had Harry right where he wanted him. He told the Order and Dumbledore which allowed them to prevent Voldemort from getting the prophecy and killing Harry(the death eaters made it clear that they had every intention of killing Harry after they got the prophecy). I don’t think that Snape would have wanted to foil his master’s plans intentionally.

Like I said before, I am probably completely wrong. JKR will probably come up with some elaborate story that will put all of our speculation to rest. She will probably come up with something that nobody would have thought of or she will introduce some new element into the book. If I am not mistaken, the 7th book is coming out in the summer of 2007? So we now have something to look forward to. Hopefully, it won’t be another War of the Worlds disaster where all the questions were left unanswered!! :ahh: (yes, i am still mad about that :wink: )

BTW, I am sorry if I have mentioned something that has already been said. I keep losing track between all the HP discussions. :smiley:

GO 1403!!!

I haven’t been on in a reeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaallllllllyyyyy long time but I just had to reply to this one…

I think Dumbledore did actually die because otherwise why would a portrait of him appear in his (old) office along with all the other dead headmasters/mistresses?

And also on that point, Dumbledore’s portrait will be very important in the last book. Because portraits can talk in the wizarding world, Harry will be able to talk to Dumbledore and possibly discuss tactics or recieve guidance and help in book 7. I think this could probably be why Rowling mentioned the portrait hanging on the wall (even if it was just a small hint)!