Harry Potter: Ranked

Harry Potter: Ranked

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We, as millennials, have the unique distinction of being the generation that grew up with the Harry Potter series. Many of us, myself included, were big fans of these books as the series unfolded, and continue to be fans today. While all the Harry Potter books have a charm to them, some of the books in the series are better than others. Lucky for the Harry Potter series, even the “bad" books are pretty darn good. Here's my official ranking of how the books of the series stack up, starting with the worst and ending with the best. Warning: there are some spoilers ahead!

7. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

This book is just frustrating. Literally, some parts made me want to just skip entire chapters. In this particular book, 15-year-old Harry spends the majority of his time brooding with teenaged angst about why people aren't paying more attention to him, why he can't get Cho to like him, blah, blah, blah. For the same reason most of us do not particularly enjoy reading a tenth grader's Twitter posts, this book is not one of the best at all.

Basically, the unifying theme of all whopping 870 pages of this novel is “why Harry is so mad for no reason at all." Also, this entire book features Umbridge who, face it, is actually worse than Voldemort. Some people defend this book saying that fan-favorite, Sirius Black, gets the most attention in this book out of any others. Ok, cool justification considering he gets killed off in the end in a strange way that has never been explained. That veil was just too conveniently placed, wasn't it, J.K. Rowling? The best part of this book is the end, when people finally believe that Voldemort is back after almost 900 pages of annoying denial.

6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

This book, like the Order of the Phoenix, is long. Almost too long. Like, we get it. Someone in the school put Harry's name in the cup and we don't know who it was. I'm sure we'll find out later. Also, the Triwizard Tournament. What is this thing? Why is something this dangerous, not to mention completely distracting and disruptive, allowed to occur at a school that is supposed to be teaching 11 to 17 year old kids? Aside from it not making any sense, the Triwizard Tournament basically acts as the world's largest McGuffin basically ever. You mean to tell me that in a magical world, Barty Crouch Jr. would have had to go through all of those extremely extensive steps just to get Harry to touch the Triwizard Cup at the end? Yeah, okay. Seems to me like a certain British billionaire author needed to fill about 600 pages. This book does have a very important redeeming value though: Voldemort's return. Obviously that is a pivotal moment in the series and, in my opinion, some of the best chapters within the entire series. The Goblet of Fire is very easily the turning point of the series, where the books go from being children's books to being catered to a more mature, young adult audience—giving the book series its unique quality of aging with both the characters and the reader.

5. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Admittedly, this was my favorite book in the series when I was younger. It's charming, it goes a littler deeper than the first book, and it has some cool scenes with the Basilisk and Aragog. However, as I got older, I realized that this book isn't as flawless as I originally thought it was. I still like all the stuff about the book that I just mentioned, but some of the finer points seem to be strange. First of all, the whole diary thing is still a little unclear. I don't think it was properly explained. Also, does anyone else think it's a little disappointing that after all the build up, the main villain turns out to be a book? Literally a book is causing all this trouble. Ok, I get the whole, “but later it turned out to be a Horcrux!" argument, but at this time we had no clue what horcruxes were and it seems to me that J.K. Rowling conveniently threw that in there later in order to make that stupid book actually mean something. One thing that I continue to find unique about Chamber of Secrets is that in this book, we are introduced to the ideas behind “blood purity" which proves to be very important throughout the rest of the series. Oh, and of course Dobby is introduced.

4. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

I really do like this book. My main problem with it is that its ending is so frustrating. This book is great because it introduces us to the wider wizarding world aside from Hogwarts, giving some back story and insight into the extensive network of followers that aided Voldemort's evil. I really like Lupin and Sirius, and these two are introduced in this book. However, that ending is just. So. Frustrating. Here we are, thinking everything will be great from now on. Harry can live with his godfather, Peter Pettigrew will finally be brought to justice, the Hogwarts students will finally get to keep a competent Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, etc. Well if it sounds too good to be true, that's because it is. All because of one stupid moment, every single one of these great plans is shattered, and Sirius barely escapes with his life. Ugh, talk about extreme irritation.

3. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

How can you not love this book? This is the one that started it all and brought us into the Potter universe that we would come to know and love so well. While this book is clearly a children's book far more than the others, it is still just as good. When you reread this book as an adult, there's also some humor and word pun that is extremely entertaining. I think the reason that I like this book so much is because it takes me back to the feeling of being young and carefree again. Let's face it: in this book, Harry didn't have nearly as great of challenges as what he encounters later in the series. It's a nice mixture of scary adventure and reassurance that characters aren't going to be dropping dead left and right. My only criticism: why would Dumbledore, the greatest wizard in the world, be so careless about guarding the Sorcerer's Stone? I digress because this book is an absolute delight.

2. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

This book is superb. While some people criticize it for just being a giant setup for the last book, I think that it's just as vital, if not more important, than its successor. In Half Blood-Prince we begin to learn a lot more about Lord Voldemort, understand why he became the world's most evil wizard, and ultimately, see him more as a dynamic character than just some freaky half-snake super villain. The introduction of the horcruxes makes it really seem real that Harry can defeat Voldemort. Another great thing about the Half Blood-Prince is the attention that Snape gets. This really sets everything up for the revelation that he was the world's best spy. The worst part about this book: Dumbledore's death, obviously. I distinctly remember crying about this and pretending that it didn't happen and that I dreamt it. Judge me.

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

In my eyes, there is no way to argue that this is not the best book in the series. After years and years of waiting, we finally find out what happens in the end. So much excitement. Okay, sure it's kind of slow in the beginning and sure no one cares about the gang's camping trip, but it gets really good, really fast. We learn so much more about many, many characters. Snape is vindicated and Dumbledore is finally portrayed as a human with flaws. It is heart wrenching when so many characters die, but it makes Harry's victory in the end that much more important. Also, the introduction of the Deathly Hallows threw a nice little wrench into the situation and ultimately, the reader has to marvel at how Rowling tied so many details neatly together at the end. There are so many amazing things about this book I can't even say them all, but a definite highlight is Mrs. Weasley calling Bellatrix Lestrange a b*itch then killing the crazy, eyeliner-abusing, evil, vile woman.

Cover Image Credit: https://melissatadlock.wordpress.com/tag/exactitude-2/

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A Letter To My Go-To Aunt

Happiness is having the best aunt in the world.
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I know I don't say it enough, so let me start off by saying thank you.

You'll never understand how incredibly blessed I am to have you in my life. You'll also never understand how special you are to me and how much I love you.

I can't thank you enough for countless days and nights at your house venting, and never being too busy when I need you. Thank you for the shopping days and always helping me find the best deals on the cutest clothes. For all the appointments I didn't want to go to by myself. Thank you for making two prom days and a graduation party days I could never forget. Thank you for being overprotective when it comes to the men in my life.

Most importantly, thank you for being my support system throughout the numerous highs and lows my life has brought me. Thank you for being honest even when it isn't what I want to hear. Thank you for always keeping my feet on the ground and keeping me sane when I feel like freaking out. Thank you for always supporting whatever dream I choose to chase that day. Thank you for being a second mom. Thank you for bringing me into your family and treating me like one of your own, for making me feel special because you do not have an obligation to spend time with me.

You've been my hero and role model from the time you came into my life. You don't know how to say no when family comes to you for help. You're understanding, kind, fun, full of life and you have the biggest heart. However, you're honest and strong and sometimes a little intimidating. No matter what will always have a special place in my heart.

There is no possible way to ever thank you for every thing you have done for me and will continue to do for me. Thank you for being you.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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15 Thing Only Early 2000's Kids Will Understand

"Get connected for free, with education connection"

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This is it early 2000's babies, a compilation finally made for you. This list is loaded with things that will make you swoon with nostalgia.

1. Not being accepted by the late 90's kids.

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Contrary to what one may think, late 90's and early 00's kids had the same childhood, but whenever a 00's kid says they remember something on an "only 90's kids will understand" post they are ridiculed.

2. Fortune tellers.

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Every day in elementary school you would whip one of these bad boys out of your desk, and proceed to tell all of your classmates what lifestyle they were going to live and who they were going to marry.

3.Bunnicula

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You could never read this book past 8 o'clock at night out of fear that your beloved pet rabbit would come after you.

4. Silly bands.

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You vividly remember begging your parents to buy you $10 worth of cheap rubber bands that vaguely resembles the shape of an everyday object.

5. Parachutes.

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The joy and excitement that washed over you whenever you saw the gym teacher pull out the huge rainbow parachute. The adrenaline that pumped through your veins whenever your gym teacher tells you the pull the chute under you and sit to make a huge "fort".

6. Putty Erasers

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You always bought one whenever there was a school store.

7. iPod shuffle.

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The smallest, least technological iPpd apple has made, made you the coolest kid at the bus stop.

8. "Education Connection"

You knew EVERY wood to the "Education Connection" commercials. Every. Single.Word.

9. " The Naked Brothers Band"

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The "Naked Brothers Band" had a short run on Nickelodeon and wrote some absolute bangers including, "Crazy Car' and "I Don't Wanna Go To School"

10. Dance Dance Revolution

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This one video game caused so many sibling, friend, and parent rivalries. This is also where you learned all of your super sick dance moves.

11. Tamagotchi

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Going to school with fear of your Tamagotchi dying while you were away was your biggest worry.

12. Gym Scooters

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You, or somebody you know most likely broke or jammed their finger on one of these bad boys, but it was worth it.

13. Scholastic book fairs

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Begging your parents for money to buy a new book, and then actually spending it on pens, pencils, erasers, and posters.

14.Go-Gurt

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Who knew that putting yogurt in a plastic tube made it taste so much better?

15. Slap Bracelets

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Your school probably banned these for being "too dangerous".

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