This is the 4th book in the series by this author. This book marks the first change in story telling. In the first three books, the story starts at Privet Drive. Thus far it has been told from Harry’s perspective. The first three books also have a discreet conclusion. This changes with the four book.
This story starts off approximately 50 years in the past. Yes many of you remember that Tom Riddle was at Hogwarts 50 years ago. The location is the Riddle house. Mr. and Mrs. Riddle, Sr. and their son Tom are found dead one morning by the maid. The old groundskeeper Frank Bryce is suspected of murdering the family but is release because there was no evidence of murder. The three apparently dropped dead with looks of surprise on there face. The Riddle House passes from owner to owner with no one keeping it long, yet Bryce remains the groundskeeper. Then the story jumps 50 years to the present.
Bryce one night sees lights in the abandoned house. Believing that it is local boys, Bryce goes to the house alone to scare them away. While in the house, Bryce finds the culprits but they are none other than Wortail and Voldemort (who is not actually seen by Bryce). As Bryce is listening to their nefarious plans involving Harry Potter a great snake Nagini crawls passed him and informs Voldemort that Bryce is present. Voldemort kills Bryce.
At this precise moment Harry Potter is dreaming this whole scene. When Voldemort kills the old man, Harry wakes with his scar hurting furiously. He decides to tell Sirius about his scar in hopes for some good advice.
While waiting for Sirius’ response Harry leaves Privet Drive to spend the rest of the summer with the Weasley’s who will be attending the Quiditch World Cup. Well, the game is between Ireland and Bulgaria who features Viktor Krum as seeker. Ireland wins. That night there is a mob that decides to torture the Muggles who run the campsite. There is a mass stampeded to get out of the area. Harry, Ron, and Hermione get separated from the rest of the Weasley family and end up in a clearing by themselves. Harry discovers he has lost his wand. They hear a voice cry MORTEMORDRE and a skull with a snake coming out of the mouth appears in the air adding to the confusion. Ministry wizards appear at the trios location and attempt to find out who cast the Dark Mark.
The Dark Mark is Voldemort and his followers (Death Eaters) symbol. Any time this was cast over a house it meant that someone had been killed.
It appears that a house elf named Winky used Harry’s wand to cast the spell. And she ends up punished by her master- Bartemius Crouch, Sr. This injustice rackles Hermione quite alot.
Soon after the world cup, Harry gets word from Sirius that he’s coming to Harry’s location due to the strange events. As Sirius is Harry’s godfather, he wants to be closer to Harry in order to protect him. Harry panics not wanting the only parental figure in his life to be capture. But Sirius comes anyway.
The trio end up back at school without future incident. At the Start of Term Feast, Dumbledore tells the school that the InterHouse Competition will not take place that year as the Triwizard Tournament will be held at Hogwarts that year.
The Triwizard Tournanment started as a competition between the three largest school of wizardry in Europe- Hogwarts (UK), Beauxbatons (France), and Durmstrang (Balkans). It was hosted every 5 years; however, it stopped being held because the death count was too high. But the Ministry of Magic thought the time to bring the competition back was ripe; and planned it in such a way that no contestant would be in mortal peril. The Ministry put an age restriction of 17 years on the contestants to ensure safety.
This year there is a new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher- Alastor Moody who is an ex-Auror. Auror’s are Dark Wizard catchers. Moody had been the best before his paranoia got the better of him. His motto is CONSTANT VIGILENCE!! Moody is missing many body parts as a result of his occupation. However, he takes a fancy to Harry. The first day of DADA class, Moody illegally introduces the 4th years to Unforgivable Curse the use of which on a human being will earn you a life time sentence in Azkaban. The curses are Imperius Curse, Cruciatus Curse, and Avada Kedavra.
Imperius Curse is control over a person’s action. Unless that person is strong willed enough to throw off the effects, you can make them do anything. Voldemort used this curse to force hundreds of people to unwillingly do his bidding.
Cruciatus Curse causes unbearable pain. Great for torture.
Avada Kedavra is the killing curse. It leaves no mark on its victim. These curses are unblockable.
Moody tells the stunned class that there has only ever been one survivor of the Avada Kedavra curse and that person is Harry Potter.
Well the other schools arrive. Beauxbatons’ headmistress is an enormous woman named Olympe Maxime. Durstrang’s headmaster is Igor Karkiroff;his most famous pupil is none other than Viktor Krum. Well the names are entered into the Goblet of Fire who will pick each school’s Champions. The three champions initially choosen are Cedric Diggory, a handsome Hufflepuff, Fleur Delacour, and Viktor Krum. And of course Harry Potter became the first ever 4th Twiwizard contestant.Well, the game is afoot. No one knows why Harry was entered; however, Dumbledore and Siruis are absolutely convinced that Harry is in danger the whole year. Sirius warns Harry to stay away from Karkiroff as Karkiroff was a former Death Eater who cut a deal to get out of prison.
There are three tasks during the tournament. The first tasks tests the contestants mettle. They are required to retrieve a golden egg from a dragon. Harry with a little help from Hagrid and Moody takes first place. The Golden Egg has the clue for the second task. But before they can get to the second task, the Yule Ball occurs. Harry learns some important things that night- Hagrid is a half-giant.
Here is another form of prejudice. Giants are known to be viscious creatures. As such wizards kept them sequestered to certain areas. Due to their propensities, giants are killing themselves out. If people knew that Hagrid was half-giant despite his gentleness, people would be fearful of him.
Harry eventually figures out the clue from the second egg with some help from Cedric Diggory. The egg contains a song by merpeople telling him that they will have taken something of his and he has an hour to retrieve it. However, Harry doesn’t know any magic that will allow him to stay underwater for an extended period of time. His help comes in the form of Dobby who overheard to teachers speculating as to whether Harry would use Gillyweed. Harry ties with Cedric Diggory for first place.
The final task is a maze. The tournament cup is in the center; the first champion to reach it wins the cup and 1000 galleons prize money. Harry and Cedric end up tying for the cup. But the story doesn’t end.
The cup is a Portkey, which is a form of instaneous transport. The cup relocates the boys to a graveyard. Before they can figure out what to do, a familiar voice kills Cedric with the Avada Kedavra and Harry is overwhelmed by the pain in his scar. It’s Wormtail and Voldemort, who has some how obtained a rudimentary child-like body. Harry is strapped to a headstone- incidentally Voldemort’s father’s headstone. Wormtail helps Voldemort obtain a body using ancient magic that uses three things- bone of the father, flesh from a willing servant, and blood from an enemy.
Voldemort returns and summons his Death Eaters through the Dark Mark tatooed on their forearms. When Voldemort touches Wormtail’s tattoo it burns black on his arm and every other Death Eater. All the Death Eaters save those dead or imprisoned return. Voldemort begins his tale…
Tom Riddle, Jr. was his father. He married his mother, who was a witch. When Tom Riddle found out that his mother was a witch he left her and never came back to discover what became of his son. Voldemort killed his father and grandparents. Voldemort’s purpose in life was immortality and took several steps none of which he could be sure would work. On the night he killed Harry’s parents, Lily sacrificed herself for her son. As a result, the Avada Kedavra curse backfired on Voldemort. Due to his experiments he did not die. His spirit was ripped from his body and he was a weak ghost. He had tried to obtain a body before but Harry prevented him in the Sorceror’s stone. He had engineered all the strange events that year. He conspired to have Harry entered in the tournament to get him to this point. He wanted Harry’s blood because it would make him stronger and he would be able to overcome the inability to physically touch Harry. However, Voldemort did reveal that Harry is safe at his relatives and that he still cannot touch him at Privet Drive. Voldemort’s faithful Death Eater was at Hogwarts and that is how Harry was entered into the contest. Voldemort also revealed that there were two other possible former Death Eaters at Hogwarts that would be dealt with.
At this point Voldemort decides to untie Harry and duel with him in a cat and mouse sort of way before killing him. It doesn’t go quite as planned. In the fight casting of spells Harry and Voldemort’s wands connect and Voldemort’s wand regurgitates a shadow form of the spells it has performed in reverse order. As a result, a form of Cedric appears along with four other people, two of which are Harry’s parents. These shades help Harry get back to the Portkey, and Harry is able to get back to Hogwarts with Cedric’s body in tow.
Dumbledore realizing that something was wrong had come to the maze looking for Harry. Harry tells him that Voldemort is back. A panic erupts on finding Cedric dead. In the mayhem Harry is removed from Dumbledore’s presence by Moody against Dumbledore’s wishes. Moody takes Harry to his office and questions him about what happened in the graveyard. As the discussion progresses Harry realizes that something is wrong with Moody. Before Moody can kill Harry, Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Snape rescue Harry. For the first time we see why Dumbledore is the only wizard Voldemort fears. As it turns out this was not Moody. Voldemort’s faithful Death Eater had incapacitated the real Moody and used a potion to take Moody’s appearance.
Harry tells Sirius and Dumbledore what happened. Dumbledore has a look of triumph for the fact that Voldemort used Harry’s blood. He also explains the wands connecting- Priori Incatatem.
Priori Incatatem is the reverse spell effect. If two wands share the same core and the owners of the wands force them to duel. The wands won’t work against one another. One wand will force the other to regurgitate spells in reverse order. Harry and Voldemort’s wands share cores. Both have phoenix feathers as a core. The feathers came from the same phoenix- Dumbledore’s pet Fawks.
After telling his tale, Harry is sent to the hospital wing for a night of dreamless sleep. However, while in the hospital we find out that Karkiroff has fled; and that Snape was a Death Eater who became a double agent for the good side. Sirius is also revealed. Arthur and Molly and Bill Weasley join Dumbledore’s cause. We also find out that Cornelius Fudge is a cowardly man who would rather deceive himself into believing Voldemort is not back than risk warfare. He and Dumbledore part ways.
At the end of term feast Dumbledore makes the best speech on choosing to do good over evil.
Remember Cedric. Remember, if the time should come when you have to make a choice between what is right and what is easy, remember what happened to a boy who was good, and kind, and brave, because he strayed across the path of Lord Voldemort. Remember Cedric Diggory
At the end of the book, we find out that Hagrid is being sent on a mission with Madam Maxime who it has been revealed is half-giant as well.
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This book was well- INCREDIBLE. It was a whopping 732 pages long. It was chock full of mysteries. Finally we get to some meat with the adventure. So as you can imagine it left me with a lot of questions. Specifically
1. Where did Voldemort get his rudimentary body?
2. Why does Harry’s scar hurt when Voldemort is near?
3. Why did Dumbledore have a look of triumph in his eyes because Voldemort used Harry’s blood?
4. What did Snape do to convince Voldemort that he was still on his side seeing how he returned late?
5. Were Hagrid and Madame Maxime being sent to the giants?
6. Will we see Fleur or Viktor again?
7. What did it mean that Dumbledore and Fudge parted ways?
8. What were the “experiments” that Voldemort did to achieve immortality?
9. Since Harry and Voldemort have wands that share cores, how will they eventually battle one another?
10. Why is Voldemort so fixated on Harry?
11. Is Arabella Figg who is mentioned in the hospital scene, the batty old neighbor who lives in Privet Drive.
This book is definitely the turning point in the whole series. From this point on you will notice an arc in the themes of the book. Book 3 has symmetry with book 5; book 2 has symmetry with book 6, and most likely book 1 will have symmetry with book 7.