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Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix [Large Print]
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Dale again takes the reins as nimble voice master and gallops away with a splendid performance of Rowling's fifth tome about the beloved boy wizard. Full credit is due Dale for creating-and keeping track of-an enormous cast (134, to be precise) of distinct voices; he achieves impressive continuity of character from one novel to the next. But perhaps most notable here is Dale's development of protagonist Harry's evolution from wide-eyed, affable boy to an often angry and disillusioned teenager. Obviously at home in Rowling's world, Dale effortlessly follows the story into darker and more complex waters. Plot turns include further intrigue amongst the wizard hierarchy, the arrival of a new, suspect Defense of the Dark Arts professor, and the main characters' navigation through increasing social and academic pressures. Though Harry, Ron and Hermione are gradually sounding a bit older, and inevitably wiser, Dale keeps their cores intact, so as not to lose listeners along the way. Ages 9-up. Simultaneous release with the Scholastic/Levine hardcover. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Just in case you missed it in all the media, the fifth installment of the Harry Potter series is flying your way on June 21. It's one-third longer than Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and Dumbledore promises to tell all. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Gr all levels-The boy with the thunderbolt scar is back, and while he's bravely showing his magical might, he's also succumbing to some very human emotions. J.K. Rowling's fifth book (Scholastic, 2003) is not only bigger than the previous ones, it's better. Harry is now a feisty, sometimes frustrated, 15-year-old with his usual cohort of loyal friends and a new nemesis from the Ministry of Magic. Though the young wizard is fearful when it comes to dating, he's recklessly courageous combating his old enemy, Voldemort. Rowling has carefully combined dexterous detail with bursts of heart-pounding action to create a finely-textured story. Award-winning narrator Jim Dale does a superb job of making both the romping humor and the riveting danger feel three dimensional. Now thoroughly at home with the horde from Hogwart's, Dale is equally adept at creating this book's new and distinctive characters. Even those who've read all of the novel's 870 pages will be richly rewarded by listening to this exceptional recording; and every library should have the cassettes and/or the CDs for them to borrow.-Barbara Wysocki, Cora J. Belden Library, Rocky Hill, CT Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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