Harry Potter is a little boy, who lives with his uncle, aunt and dreadful cousin Dudley. He’s perfectly normal, except for the fact that he’s a wizard!
Okay, I’m not going to digress much further on the plot. The first book is the introduction to the series: we get to know Harry, his life, how we deals with this entire new world opening up to him, and we get to go to Hogwarts!
Plot-wise, this book isn’t very dense, and most of the action happens in the last two chapters, but I have such a fondness for it. It’s the first one, we get sucked into this alternate world, and J.K. Rowling really does make it magical. A great deal of this book to me, is nostalgia. I remember how I felt when I read it for the first time, in a chilly house in Alentejo, when I was 8, wrapped in blankets, and oohing and aahing, at everything awesome that happened.
It’s also fascinating seeing how the Trio behaved when they met, and comparing to how much they’ve grown up. In this book, the thing that worries them the most is getting detention, losing House points, and losing the House cup. I kept smiling and thinking how wonderfully innocent they all were.
Also, I feel a certain hate for the three of them when they finally get together. Harry and Ron are arrogant and mean to Hermione, and Hermione is snotty and frankly, quite annoying. It’s nice watching them grow up in the next books, Hermione a lot quicker than the boys, who still don’t care much for other people’s emotions.
I love this book because it’s such a terrific way to begin such a wonderful journey, and with hindsight, some actions and things characters say really made me appreciate their roles later in the series. For example, the animosity between Harry and Snape really tugs at my heartstrings.