July 23, 2007

Questions for J.K. Rowling

Not that she'd ever even find my humble little site, but I know we all have burning, unanswered questions about things in the Hogwarts Universe. Let's discuss, shall we?

Mine below the fold, and spoiler-iffic discussion (hopefully) in the comments!

1. What the heck is Neville's Patronus? I'd love it to be an animated mushroom or some such, reflecting his love of herbology. What about Hagrid's? I'd guess it would be a dragon.

2. What happened to Umbridge? Did she die? Was she punished? Was she a Death Eater in the end?

3. Who in hell would ACTUALLY marry Draco Malfoy? I mean really.

4. What's the deal with Patronuses anyway? I mean the animal represents someone who loves us or who we love, right? Or some character quality we embody? Dumbledore's was a phoenix: Fawkes; Harry's was a stag: his dad; Snape's was a doe: Lily (and evidently hers was a doe because she loved James); Arthur's is a weasel, etc. So why is Ron's a terrier, and Hermione's an otter. Odd choice, that. Anyone got any ideas?

5. Does anyone else feel like there was a lot cut out? For example the Dursley part? or maybe scenes at Hogwarts? If so, BAD EDITOR. BAD. We'd have bought it even if it was the same size as frigging War and Peace!

6. Who else loved the references to other literary worlds? The speaking patronuses (The Golden Compass series), the horcrux worn around HRH's necks making them grumpy and then trying to kill Harry in the pond (LOTR), the scene with the Probity Probes at Gringotts (Star Wars, of course).... Any others I missed?

7. This one's more of a statement, but I actually get the whole deal with Kreacher. He didn't just turn around 180 degrees overnight. HRH won him over because they asked him to continue to be loyal to Regulus' last task for him. And fighting Voldy was, in fact, Regulus' last mission for him, in a way. So he could continue to serve his old master by serving Harry, which is what brought him great joy and allowed him to respect HRH.

Perhaps more later in the comments....

Posted by caltechgirl at July 23, 2007 01:57 PM | TrackBack

One niggling detail that bothered me -- what was the deal with Stan Shunpike? In the last book, Harry and Dumbledore were both convinced he could never be a Death Eater, in this book he is. Did he turn? Was he Imperiused? Was he spying for someone? It wasn't explained or justified in any way.

Posted by: Ian Hamet at July 23, 2007 03:12 PM

There was some discussion that Stan was under the Imperius curse, and then he went to Azkaban, IIRC, so he may actually have been a good guy, and it wasn't just speculation. Not sure, though.

Posted by: caltechgirl at July 23, 2007 06:19 PM

I'm guessing that Draco recovered sufficiently from the whole thing to be considerably less repulsive ten years down the line. Though I'm not sure how much of that would be real personality improvement and how much would be that those he needs to impress would be less repulsive. But yeah, eeeewww.

Posted by: Deb at July 24, 2007 10:04 AM

Here's something that has not been answered to my satisfaction: Is Snape a vampire or part vampire? He has always been described as bat-like, cloaked in darkness, darkness of the dungeon, etc. And then, it this book, when Snape flees Hogwarts, he flies off like a bat.

Surely if he were an animagus we would know, right? She doesn't come right out and say it, so I'm still wondering.

Posted by: Phoenix at July 24, 2007 01:10 PM

i dunno.... Scrimgeour was always described as if he was a lion animagus... or Crookshanks, but he was neither. I think JKR just likes the animal similes...

Posted by: caltechgirl at July 24, 2007 01:19 PM

Okay, but page 599 says...

"With a tingle of horror, Harry saw in the distance a huge, batlike shape flying through the darkness toward the perimeter wall."

Posted by: Phoenix at July 24, 2007 01:28 PM

And, just before that, snape escapes by jumping out of the window. He was carrying a wand, but no broom. So, he either wingardium leviosa'd himself or he flew out that window without benefit of a broom.

Or...he learned how to fly sans broom like Voldy.

Posted by: Phoenix at July 24, 2007 01:33 PM

Sorry I'm late.

I don't think Hagrid has a Patronus. He was expelled in his third year, so he never learned that spell. ... Ron's terrier and Hermoine's otter are probably meant to be personality clues. It feels right to me (even if I can't explain quite why). ...

However, I share your puzzlement about Draco. This may have been one of those "left on the cutting room floor" bits, but she set us up for a big change of heart that didn't really get there; it would have helped us get behind his marriage later on.

Posted by: nightfly at July 27, 2007 10:29 AM

I agree on many of these question and im really puzzled ....
What i wonder is Who is the headmaster on Hogwarts?
Is it Harry himself or anyone else in the near being.... And why did Lupin die off scene? I thought his char. was worth a little more than that. And why didnt Harry use the marauders map when going to find
Voldemort when they were looking for him in hogwarts ... was there too many people around?
I will leave these question and be visiting this forum now and then..........

Posted by: Alexander at July 28, 2007 08:12 AM