Harry Potter is having a rough year. When he first runs away from his Aunt and Uncle he finds out that a notorious criminal is after him, and starts to wonder why. At the beginning of his 3rd year of school at Hogwarts, he thinks he may have seen a death omen in one of his special classes.... read more
Having lost his temper with his Aunt Marge and inadvertently caused her to magically inflate, Harry Potter takes the Knight Bus to The Leaky Cauldron, where he meets Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic. Fudge informs Harry that Aunt Marge has been deflated and that he will not be punished.... read more (warning: may contain spoilers)
Having lost his temper with his Aunt Marge and inadvertently caused her to magically inflate, Harry Potter takes the Knight Bus to The Leaky Cauldron, where he meets Cornelius Fudge, the Minister of Magic. Fudge informs Harry that Aunt Marge has been deflated and that he will not be punished. The Ministry of Magic is simply concerned about Harry's safety due to the escape of mass-murderer Sirius Black from the wizarding prison Azkaban. Black was a great friend of the Potter family and was Harry's godfather, but betrayed the family to the evil Lord Voldemort. Voldemort killed Harry's parents but mysteriously vanished when he tried to kill Harry. Afterwards, Black murdered the Potters' friend Peter Pettigrew along with 12 bystanders. Then, the ministry caught Black and sent him to prison.
Harry and his friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger return to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and find security has been tightened because of Black's escape. The grounds are now guarded by Dementors, dark, sinister beings that drain the happiness of anyone nearby and guard Azkaban prison. They also cause Harry to hear his parents' last moments and pass out. Remus Lupin, the school's new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, tells Harry he is more vulnerable to the Dementors because he has seen genuine horrors in his past. He agrees to teach Harry the Patronus Charm, a shield against the Dementors.
Harry is depressed to learn he will not be allowed to visit Hogsmeade, the local village, because Uncle Vernon refused to sign Harry's form. He is also angry with Draco Malfoy for ruining Hagrid's first lesson as Care of Magical Creatures teacher. Malfoy causes himself to be attacked by Buckbeak, Hagrid's beloved Hippogriff, and his father ensures that Buckbeak is sentenced to be executed at the end of the school year. Over the course of the year, Hermione uses a Time-Turner to travel in time and attend classes held at the same time. Black manages to break into the castle twice, but is unable to reach Harry. Fred and George Weasley show Harry a secret passageway to Hogsmeade and give him the Marauder's Map.
Ron discovers that Scabbers, his rat, has disappeared and believes he has been eaten by Crookshanks, Hermione's cat, causing a falling-out between him and Hermione. Hermione later finds Scabbers in Hagrid's hut when the three of them visit him before Buckbeak's execution. On their way back from the hut, Ron is suddenly attacked by a large black dog and dragged into a passage beneath the Whomping Willow, a magical tree. Harry and Hermoine receive a brutal beating from the Whomping Willow before moving on into the passage.
Harry and Hermione follow the sounds of Ron's screams and find themselves in an old, boarded-up shack known as the Shrieking Shack. They also discover that the dog is Sirius Black, who is an Animagus. Harry attempts to attack Black when Lupin arrives. Hermione confronts Lupin about habits she has observed during her classes with him, and Lupin admits to being a werewolf. Lupin explains that he, Black, Pettigrew, and James Potter, Harry's father, were great friends and wrote the Marauder's Map. To make Lupin's transformations more enjoyable, his friends all became Animagi, humans who can turn into animals at will. The Marauders remained friends after growing up, and when they learned Voldemort was after the Potters, Black became their Secret-Keeper, and also Harry's godfather. However, Black then reveals that he had secretly switched his Secret-Keeper duty with Pettigrew in order to serve as a decoy. Black states Pettigrew is the betrayer and, rather than being murdered by Black, is actually Scabbers. Professor Snape suddenly barges in on the scene and threatens Lupin and Black with his wand, and taunts Black with threats of turning him over to the Dementors. However, Harry knocks Snape out, allowing Lupin and Black to take Scabbers from Ron and revert him back into Pettigrew.
Pettigrew admits to the story, but Harry stops Black and Lupin from killing him and becoming murderers themselves. Instead, Harry persuades them to take Pettigrew back to Hogwarts in order to clear Sirius's name. However, as they return to the castle, the full moon emerges and Lupin transforms into a werewolf. Pettigrew transforms back into a rat and escapes while Black holds of Lupin in his dog form. Black is knocked out by Lupin, who is about to kill Harry when a strange howl alerts Lupin and lures him away from Harry. Harry finds an unconscious Sirius lying by a pond, where Dementors suddenly descend on the pair and nearly kill them. They are saved at the last minute by a strange figure using the Patronus Charm. Harry believes was cast by his father, and then passes out.
Harry awakes in the castle to learn that Black has been captured. To save him, Harry and Hermione use the Time-Turner to travel back in time and prevent his capture. Harry and Hermione rescue Buckbeak and re-watch the scenes of the night, until they see the Dementors cornering Harry and Sirius. Harry is determined to see who sent the Patronus, only to realize that it was himself. Sirius is rescued and flees on Buckbeak; Lupin, outed as a werewolf, resigns. Harry is worried that Pettigrew may help Voldemort to return, but Dumbledore says Harry should be grateful that he helped save Sirius' life.
“Harry Potter was a highly unusual boy in many ways. For one thing, he hated the summer holidays more than any other time of the year. For another, he really wanted to do his homework but was forced to do it in secret, in the dead of night. And he also happened to be a wizard.”J.K. Rowling
“Extremely unusual though he was, at that moment Harry Potter felt just like everyone else- glad, for the first time in his life, that it was his birthday.”J.K. Rowling
“I'm not trying to be a hero, but seriously, Sirius Black can't be worse than Voldemort, can he?”Harry James Potter
“How thick would Harry have to be, to go looking for a nutter who wants to kill him?”Ron Weasley
“They make a fuss about Hogsmeade, but I assure you, Harry, it's not all it's cracked up to be. All right, the sweetshop's rather good, and Zonko's Joke Shop's frankly dangerous, and yes, the Shrieking Shack is always worth a visit, but really, Harry, apart from that, you're not missing anything.”Percy Weasley
“Mr. Moony presents his compliments to Professor Snape, and begs him to keep his abnormally large nose out of other people's business. Mr. Prongs agrees with Mr. Moony, and would like to add that Professor Snape is an ugly git. Mr. Padfoot would like to register his astonishment that an idiot like that ever became a professor. Mr. Wormtail bids Professor Snape good day, and advises him to wash his hair, the slimeball.”Marauder's Map
“'What would your head have been doing in Hogsmeade, Potter?' said Snape softly. 'Your head is not allowed in Hogsmeade. No part of your body has permission to be in Hogsmeade.'”Severus Snape
“'How extraordinarily like your father you are, Potter,' Snape said suddenly, his eyes glinting. 'He too was exceedingly arrogant. A small amount of talent on the Quidditch field made him think he was a cut above the rest of us too. Strutting around the place with his friends and admirers ... The resemblance between you is uncanny.'”Severus Snape
“I don't go looking for trouble, trouble usually finds me!”Harry James Potter
“Did you see that, Something happened!”Harry (practicing the Patronous Charm)
“I don't need help. It's obvious what this means. There's going to be loads of fog tonight.”Ron Weasley
“I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.”
“Messrs. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs~ Purveyors of Aids to Magical Mischief-Makersare proud to present THE MARAUDER'S MAP.”Marauder's Map
“Mischief Managed!”Marauder's Map
“Never trust anything that can think for itself, if you can't see where it keeps its brain.”Arthur Weasley
“The consequences of our actions are always so complicated, so diverse, that predicting the future is a very difficult business indeed.”Albus Dumbledore
“This is no time to be a gentleman! Knock her off her broom if you have to!”Oliver Wood
“He's at Hogwarts...”Sirius Black
“'That felt good...' 'Good? Brilliant!'”Hermione and Ron
“'What's your name?' 'Neville Longbottom...'”Stan Shunpike and Harry
“Dementors are amongst the foulest creatures to walk on this earth.”Professor Remus Lupin
“Your father is alive in you, Harry, and shows himself most plainly when you have need of him.”Albus Dumbledore
“You think the dead we loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don’t recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble?”Albus Dumbledore
“If you made a better rat than a human, it’s not much to boast about, Peter.”Sirius Black
“That suggests that what you fear most of all is — fear. Very wise, Harry.”Remus Lupin
“Ah, well, people can be a bit stupid abou’ their pets.”Rubeus Hagrid
“'How're we getting to King's Cross tomorrow, Dad?' asked Fred as they dug into a sumptuous pudding. 'The Ministry's providing a couple of cars,' said Mr. Weasley. Everyone looked up at him, 'Why?' said Percy curiously. 'It's because of you, Perce,' said George seriously. 'And there'll be little flags on the hoods, with HB on them' 'for Humongous Bighead,' said Fred.”Arthur, Percy, Fred and George Weasley
“'I dreamed I was buying new shoes last night,' said Ron. 'What d'ya think that's gonna mean?' 'Probably that you're going to be eaten by a giant marshmallow or something,' said Harry.”Ron and Harry
“Bad news, Harry. I've just been to see Professor McGonagall about the Firebolt. She – er, got a bit shirty with me. Told me I'd got my priorities wrong. Seemed to think I cared more about winning the Cup than I do about staying alive. Just because I told her I didn't care if it threw you off, as long as you caught the Snitch first.”Oliver Wood
“And it's Gryfindor in possession again, as Johnson takes the Quaffle - Flint alongside her - poke him in the eye, Angelina - it was a joke, professor, it was a joke...”Lee Jordan
“Professor Kettleburn, our Care of Magical Creatures teacher, retired at the end of last year in order to enjoy more time with his remaining limbs.”Albus Dumbledore
“Once again you've put your keen and penetrating mind to the task and as usual come to the wrong conclusion.”Sirius Black
“I know how to use a fellytone now.”Ron Weasley
“You look in excellent health to me, Potter, so you will excuse me if I don't let you off homework today. I assure you that if you do die, you need not hand it in.”Minerva McGonagall
1. Owl Post
2. Aunt Marge's Big Mistake
3. The Knight Bus
4. The Leaky Cauldron
5. The Dementor
6. Talons and Tea Leaves
7. The Boggart in the Wardrobe
8. Flight of the Fat Lady
9. Grim Defeat
10. The Marauder's Map
11. The Firebolt
12. The Patronus
13. Gryffindor Versus Ravenclaw
14. Snape's Grudge
15. The Quidditch Final
16. Professor Trelawney's Prediction
17. Cat, Rat, and Dog
18. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs
19. The Servant of Lord Voldemort
20. The Dementor's Kiss
21. Hermione's Secret
22. Owl Post Again
Good for all ages 9+ unless you have a sensitive child as there is violence.J.K. Rowling continues her great plotting and pacing, but this book's edgier themes will appeal more to older kids. For most of the school year, Harry believes he is marked for death and stalked by an escaped prisoner. He also battles a creature of kids' worst nightmares: the Dementors. Suggest those with very sensitive children (one of mine would had nightmares from this sort of story at ages 9 & 10) and/or strong religious beliefs pre-read before letting young children read this.
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