Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J.K. Rowling (Review and #HPBlogateers)

Title: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter #2)
Author: J.K. Rowling (do I really need to say?)
Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks, 2002 (Reprint)
Genre: YA Fantasy, MG Fantasy

This review can be found on my BlogTeacherofYA’s Tumblr, or my Goodreads page

This read was done with Megan @ bookslayerreadsJodie @ forthenovellovers, and Tiff from Tiffthebooknerd! We together have formed…THE #HPBLOGATEERS!*

*Yes, we lost two members of our original Blogateers. Unfortunately, rereading Harry Potter isn’t for everyone. We have received some new members that will join us for future reviews (yay!), but at the time of this reading, it was simply Megan, Jodie, Tiff, and I, and we did it still TOGETHER, and that’s all that matters! Needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway), there will be no spotlight feature on this one as the member whose turn it was dropped out and is no longer a Blogateer.

Back to our normally scheduled programming! 

My Review:

Yes. That’s the copy I had, and I found it at my used bookstore. It matched my Sorcerer’s Stone edition, so I stuck with it. And now I come to learn that they only made two of the covers in this edition, so now my later books won’t match. Lovely. 

And I am not going to cite spoilers, because if you haven’t read Harry Potter, whose fault is that? That’s on you. I’ll not ruin this book, but I will obviously be continuing from book one, as it’s the second book in the series, people!

Harry wasn’t exactly welcomed back with open arms from the Dursleys after his first year at Hogwart’s School. His friends haven’t written him and he’s sulking, waiting for school to start. This is where we meet the infamous Dobby, the house elf that meddles in Harry’s life to protect him, all the while actually putting him in danger. 

Yeah. Good ol’ Dobby. 

Harry realizes that Dobby has been keeping his mail from him in hopes that he won’t want to return to Hogwarts. Since that hasn’t deterred him, Dobby gets Harry in trouble and he is on major lockdown. He can’t go anywhere because Mr. Dursley has barred his window shut.

This is also where the infamous flying car comes into play.

Ron realizes what’s happened and “rescues” Harry for the rest of the summer. This is not the only time we see the awesome flying Ford Anglia. After Harry tries to return with Ron to school, it makes another appearance. They both try to cross into the Platform to the Wizarding World, but the gate closes and Ron and Harry decide to fly to school so they don’t get into trouble. 

Preteen logic. 

Obviously, since the car was modified to fly, it has some problems, and when they arrive, they crash into what they find out later is a Whomping Willow.

Yeah, they don’t receive the warmest welcome, and the car disappears into the woods. They don’t get expelled but Harry must spend time with the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, the famous Gilderoy Lockhart. The man is a menance and knows more about shameless self-promotion than anyone. 

He seems to latch onto Harry, because Harry’s notoriety helps his own. He’s a peach. And he seems completely inept. The usual chaos that ensues only with Harry continues until they learn of a Chamber of Secrets. In the school. And of course, being the curious trio that they are, Ron, Hermoine, and Harry try to learn more about this Chamber. 

Oh, and Harry starts hearing voices, which as Hermoine explains, hearing voices, even in the Wizarding world, isn’t a good sign. So Harry keeps this knowledge to himself. 

Harry, besides hearing voices, seems to also become quite accident-prone. It couldn’t be Voldemort, as Dobby warned him that his life was in danger, but it wasn’t Voldemort…he just couldn’t say who. 

Stuff really hits the fan when, during a fun little dueling club, Harry is faced with a snake 🐍 and tells it to leave his dueling partner alone. Oh, Harry can talk to snakes! He’s apparently what’s known as a “Parselmouth,” which basically means someone who can talk to snakes. But there’s only been one other Parselmouth, and it’s the big bad V, or “he who shall not be named.”

Harry’s popularity dips after that. 

And apparently…the Chamber of Secrets that they’ve been researching? Well, it’s open. And the students are in danger. 

Is It Classroom-Appropriate?

Always. Harry Potter is a classic in the classroom. However, if the students haven’t read book one, it could be confusing to use book two as a lesson plan. So for the rest of the series, it really would just be an extension of book one. And that’s really not necessary if you can use book one. The whole series is wonderful, but it just doesn’t make sense to skip around and use different books…but if for some reason book two is the one you really want to use, then at least it is the closest to book one. 

So technically you could get away with book two, as it does still explain some backstory…but the rest of them should be used for outside reading only, to keep the students from being confused or overwhelmed with material they may not know. 

Though it would seem we all have read Harry Potter, I have learned from reviewing book one that some people haven’t read the books or seen the movies. (I know, right?)

Age Range

So Lexile must’ve figured that ages on the second book don’t matter, because all that’s listed is the score, which is 940L. Still almost the same as the first book, with a slightly higher number than the first book. This simply implies there might be slightly tougher vocabulary in this book, as well as longer sentence and paragraph length. The first book was suggested for as young as 9, and the series is thought to be middle grade. Now that Harry is 11, I still find it appropriate for middle school readers. I think if your reader can handle book one, they can definitely handle book two. Easiest way to measure the appropriateness of the book: if they’ve already started the series, then it makes logical sense to encourage the reader to continue. If they haven’t, please see my review of book one, where I clearly suggest that it is appropriate for readers of all ages.

So I give Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets…★★★★☆ for classroom use. Or…

Why not five? Because it’s a sequel. So it could be used with some creativity. Otherwise, stick to book one.

End Result:

This book really started to raise the stakes. We are no longer meeting Harry and getting to know him: he has acclimated to being a Wizard and we are seeing that Harry will always have more than a mundane life. He will always be in trouble. He is bound to be our hero, and Ron/Hermione his accomplices. The adventures are beginning and the true plot is developing into a true series. This is why Harry Potter is a modern classic.

How can I give Harry Potter anything less than ★★★★★? I can’t. It just won’t happen (except possibly one book  but I’ll get to that one when I review it).

Will you be rereading HP at some point? Or read it for the first time? I certainly encourage it! 

I’ll leave you with this….

Hey HP fans: Did you know this line was improvised? Do you wonder what the original line was? 

63 thoughts on “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J.K. Rowling (Review and #HPBlogateers)

    1. Awesome! (I had no idea either!)
      I love learning that line was improvised bc it’s hilarious!! I learn something new every day lol!
      It’s really fun to write these reviews bc you don’t have to worry about spoilers bc like everyone has read it and there’s so many gifs! 😂


      1. I just might take you up on that! It would have to be after June. I’m going to this big writing conference in June, and I’m so busy between the blog and that, I have no time for anything right now. Deep breaths.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Harry Potter is one of the few things I never put spoiler warnings on. It’s so “out there” in terms of pop culture. I know some people haven’t read the book yet, but do those people even want to if they’ve been putting it off for 15 years? :p Also, it’s kind of like Romeo and Juliet. It’s already been spoiled. You can’t get way from it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly my point: if you’ve intentionally not read this book then I can’t keep it from you after you’ve already avoided it for 15 years. It’s going to be out there. It’s well-known. I stopped reading the first time around during book five bc of a drug problem, but I saw the movies and I definitely wouldn’t run around with my eyes covered going “spoilers!” for a book that could be my own (imaginary) child’s age.
      Not gonna happen.
      I won’t give away the ending…because I never do. But I will talk about things in the series that cross over and things that happen that lead up to the big plot of each book, you know?


      1. That’s how I feel about books in general once they’ve been published for several years. Of course no one should tell you the ending or any “big reveals,” but I don’t think you ca expect people will be 100% secretive about media that has been available to the public for years. People talk about books, movies, TV shows, etc. If you want to know literally nothing about it, probably try to read/watch it soon after release. One of my friends was trying to read the seventh Harry Potter “blind” after waiting to see the movies so she could “have the experience of seeing the movie first before the book.” I was just like…no way you’re not going to run across spoilers in that time. And expecting no one to speak of HP 7 in your vicinity for a couple years is not going to work out well.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. I’m so glad you know what I mean…I can’t tiptoe around the book bc it’s been out for awhile and it just seems silly. If you haven’t read it by now, you probably are one of those people who AREN’T ever gonna read it, so move on! Lol!
      With Classics, I try to keep those spoiler-free…even though they’ve been out awhile, some people don’t get into Classics until they’re older. Hell, I try to keep spoilers out of most stuff: I have a friend who breaks down her reviews in quarters of the book and she gives a LOT of info away…luckily one was a book I wasn’t going to read, bc it was a murder mystery, but she told who the culprit was! I was like, “NOOOO!”


  2. I agree with Briana that I think most people accept HP as fair spoiler game since it’s so old. I have noticed, however, that younger individuals especially seem not to have read HP, though they often have seen the films. HP is usually the one thing I can count on to make a connection with people, but now it seems that is no longer true!


  3. The Past Due Book Review

    I personally think that except for the minute details and introduction of the wizarding world, books one and two of the HP series are almost interchangeable. Do the stakes go up? Yes; but it reads more like a transition into the third book rather than a stand alone entry. A lot of elements are drawn upon later in the series, but I personally think it is the weakest in the series. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes…this one could be used in exchange for book one if ever need be…but book one is so much better. I found book five to be the weakest (I wasn’t going to say anything until I got to it) because I struggled with it. I see what you mean though…this book is just another mini adventure for Harry, like the Stone. Though it does introduce us to Holcruxes later! 😉


    1. That’s cool! We are doing a book per month so I have to hurry and finish book three…I should have had this review up in the beginning of the month. Other reviews just get in the way sometimes!! 😂


  4. Great review for this book Stephanie, and I am so so glad to see you’re still enjoying this series. You’re reviews are really making me want to re-read these books myself so before the end of this year I’ll have to! 🙂
    The third book, Prisoner of Azkaban, is my friends favourite book but the fourth, Goblet of Fire, is mine so I’m going to be very interested to see what you think of both of those! 😀 Do you have plans to start the third book soon?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. LOL! I feel like at this point, people should either (1) read the books/have read the books by now or (2) accept the fact that they are going to see spoilers all over the internet, regardless. It’s been so long since the books published!

    I loved this second book! I’m pretty sure it was my favorite of the series. This one or maybe the fourth one. I haven’t read a Harry Potter book in so long… not sure I want to though. I’m content!

    Great post, Stephanie! Have a fabulous week. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Alyssa! I love it when you stop by and it makes me smile!
      Book four is my fave book of all time! Goblet of Fire was awesome. But this one was great with Tom Riddle…loved that part!
      I can’t wait to post the next review bc these are so fun to write!
      Thanks again, love! 😘


  6. I’m actually one of the ones who haven’t read the books or seen the movies. They came out when I was busy with adult life and I just haven’t gone backwards to read them. An awesome review as always though! Well done Teach, well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Christy Luis

    “Preteen logic” LOL Watch out, you might end up with a Harry/Ron duo in one of your subbing classes XD XD

    That was such a fun recap! Thanks for reminding me why I love this series!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wish I had a Harry/Ron duo…just don’t need a Fred/George Weasley duo! 😂
      I love to remember why this series is a new classic. Always makes for a good read. Did you know there’s a chick in Australia who has memorized all SEVEN BOOKS??

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Christy Luis

        Perfect! I already knew we were following each other but I wasn’t sure you did because you have such huuuuge fan base Lol. Yay, I can’t wait for VII 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Weirdly enough I’ve seen all the HP movies but I have yet to read the books. I’m planning to read the entire series this summer, though, and I’m really looking forward to it. Based on the movies though, I’d say my favorite is the first book or Prisoner of Azkaban!! 😀 I hope the book is just as good or better than the films (which I’m more than sure they are lol). Great review, Steph!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! Oh, I know how you feel: I read up to book five after the movies started coming out, and then I had some personal probs that led me to stop reading for awhile. I saw all the movies but I had forgotten the books. We are doing this reread bc most of us either didn’t finish the series or love it that much (I just didn’t finish the series!) so we are all in the same boat. I wish you could have been part of our reread group! If you want, after this series we will be picking another series to reread, and you’re always welcome to join!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ooooh!! That’s why. Well it’s good that you’re continuing on with the series! I hope you enjoy it in its entirety. And yay! I’d love to join you the next time 😀 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

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