Review - Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire - J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter, #4)Title: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Series: Harry Potter #4
Author: J.K. Rowling
Publication: This edition was published September 1st 2014, Bloomsbury Childrens
Pages: 640 Pages, Paperback
Source: Thank you to Jonathan Ball Publishers for sending me this book to review!
Rating: 5/5
When the Quidditch World Cup is disrupted by Voldemort’s rampaging supporters and the terrifying Dark Mark appears against the night sky, it is obvious to Harry Potter that, far from weakening, Voldemort is getting stronger. Back at Hogwarts for the fourth year Harry is astonished to be chosen to represent the school in the Triwizard Tournament. The competition is dangerous, the tasks terrifying, and true courage is no guarantee of survival – especially with the Dark Lord’s forces on the rise …
This was the last book I read in the Harry Potter series all those years ago, so I'm extremely excited to read the other three for the first time, but I'm also weary - I am aware of which characters die and I really don't want the series to end. When I read the Goblet of Fire, it wasn't my favourite (the third book always was) but reading it this time around, I can honestly say I absolutely loved it and, in fact, it ties with my enjoyment levels I felt when reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I never thought having a bad memory had any positives, but when it comes to re-reading it does, as it felt like I was reading the book for the first time as I had most forgot what happened. I remember which character died, but all the other plot twists I had completely forgotten about, which made for an even more enjoyable reading experience!

In the fourth instalment of this world-renowned series, the book begins with Harry Potter who is once again stuck at his muggle relatives, the Dursleys. Before he dies of boredom or hunger (Mrs Dursley has put Dudley on a diet, therefore forcing everyone to eat the same miniscule amount of food) Harry gets an owl from one of his best friends, Ron Weasley, inviting him to join them for the Quidditch World Cup: and so he goes. However, before he leaves, he has a dream of Voldemort and Wormtail discussing his demise and he wakes up in agony with his scar aching. Putting the dream behind him, he sets off with Hermione and the Weasleys to enjoy the World Cup, however, when Voldemort's mark is fired into the sky and his supporters, the Death Eaters, show up, the atmosphere turns tense and horrifying.

When Harry and his friends return to Hogwarts, Harry's worries about Voldemort disperse when Dumbledore states that a famous wizarding event will be held at the school: the triwizarding tournament! Two other international schools will be visiting Hogwarts over the course of the school year and they will compete with a Hogwarts student in a series of three tasks, in a bid to win the tri-wizarding cup and 1,000 galleons. However, things turn sinister when Harry gets chosen as the 4th champion - something that isn't allowed to happen. Someone has put his name in and it can only be for one reason: that person wants him obliterated.

This book was fantastic! The plot was so entertaining and I was flying through the pages, completely unaware of that fact. I also loved that I got to learn more about the wizarding world and that I was able to "witness" the Quidditch World Cup and learn more about the sport, as well as the world when Voldemort was in power. The writing was fantastic and the characters were just as amazing as ever, the whole entire story was just utterly phenomenal and I can't express how much I enjoyed reading this book.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was definitely a noticeable turning-point in the series. As I said, everything becomes more detailed and more mature in this book. In the previous instalments  we had heard of Voldemort but we hadn't actually seen what it would be like if he came to power, and in this book, his grotesque and violent nature is revealed and it genuinely made me scared for the characters whilst reading the book, as I was terrified of what would become of them once Voldemort returned. The pupils at Hogwarts were treated like adults in this book, and Dumbledore told them the truth and hid nothing from them, and I felt like we, the readers, were also being treated as adults by J.K. Rowling as she finally revealed to us the torture Voldemort inflicted on the people in the wizarding world. Like I said, I truly felt terrified for the characters as they feel like my best friends and when I'm reading the books, their world is currently my own, and I cared deeply about what would happen to the world that I was currently living in. It takes a truly great writer to suck a reader in and make them feel, for awhile, as if their story is their reality, and J.K. Rowling is a master of that.

The characters were just as lovely in this book, but we can clearly see that they are maturing and at times it was sweet (and frustrating) to see them try to navigate the uneven seas of growing up. There was something in this book that was lacking in the previous three: romance. It was extremely interesting watching Hermione, Ron and Harry develop crushes and there's definitely some chemistry between Ron and Hermione, because it was clear how jealous they got when the other was flirted with and such. I can't wait to see the romance developed further!

With each book Harry seems to grow all the more brave. The emotional turmoil he experienced was evident and towards the end it was clear that he was completely worn out and perhaps even slightly depressed, which would be completely understandable. I think Harry finally realises how powerful Voldemort and I suppose he feels responsible to stop him, because he was able to before.

In the previous books, Ron has always been the side-kick, the one with the sense of humour and the one who sticks beside Harry. In the Goblet of Fire, we were revealed his more vulnerable side, such as how he hates being poor when everyone else around him has new things in working order and we also see how left out he feels when Harry receives all the attention. It was interesting seeing this side of Ron and I hope I'll get to see more of this side as the series continues.

I didn't feel as if we saw much of Hermione in this novel, but it was clear that she has matured in this book - and more feisty. You can see she has started taking more care of her appearance and has started noticing boys. As I said, she's also gotten more feisty and protective of Ron and Harry. Hopefully in the next book, Hermione will feature more!

The entire Weasley family were just as wonderful as ever! Dumbledore was just as wise and kind and Sirius was fantastic!

In the first three books, we were never shown just how powerful Voldemort is and in this book his power and destruction he is able to cause hit me like a ton of bricks. Like I said, I felt terrified for the characters when there was evidence that he was gaining power. I felt horrified when the things he had done in the past were revealed and I finally understand why people are so terrified of him.

*SPOILER STARTS*We were also introduced to a new character in this book: Mad-Eyed Moody. It's really hard to say where I stand with him, as it also turns out we didn't actually know him at all. I loved his and relationship with Harry, but as we saw at the end, it wasn't real. When I found out who he was I was completely astounded and I'd actually felt sickened because I had adored his character and I felt cheated - just how Harry must've felt. I'm not sure if we'll see more of the real character in the next book, but I hope we do! I really wasn't expecting it and that was a genius plot twist!

I really appreciate that Rowling has incorporated such strong friendship and family dynamics throughout her series. The books will really teach people to stand up for one another, be loyal to their friends and do what is good and right. The family bonds are beautiful and you can see all the characters truly care for each other and it's just written so perfectly! 
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is the turning point in the series. It's during this book we see the characters mature, we see them struggle with internal decisions that will completely affect their lives, we see the true horror and power that Voldemort is capable of, we see the tremendous sacrifices that will be made. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is darker, magical and more exhilarating than ever! 

I give it: 5/5 CUPCAKES!