I remember a time when the only name conjured by the initials "HP" was Hewlett-Packard, and they made calculators. I also remember the time I left my very pricey HP calculator unattended on a study table at one of the 'tute's libraries and it got nicked. That was devastating -- I was completely broke and really needed that thing. I got bailed out by a friend but that created its own set of complications... and this digression has taken much too space already.
I finished The Half-Blood Prince about 45 minutes ago.
What do I think? You may be asking. I'm asking! I don't know yet. As the end of the book approached, I continued with dread because I honestly did not want to know what happened...
Did I like the book? Well, it was quite lively, and there was quite a bit that made me smile, but I can't commit to liking it just yet. I'm going to have to let it percolate a while and probably re-read a few of the more hairy passages, which I tend to skim as rapidly as possible so I can just get through them, it's very difficult for me to read about some of the dear character's pain and trials -- there were plenty of those, throughout.
It's the ending I'm having the worst time with, really. I am one of those people who should not start to read a series unless all the books have already been written. I'm looking forward to "Eldest, " the next in the "Eragon" cycle, which is due in August, I think -- even though "Eragon" was not that great a book. Really, it wasn't -- but I still want to know what happens.
Anyway, I managed to fit all of HP6 starting last night after the kids went to bed, and then a lot of the morning, around cooking and cleaning up and going to the beach and having dinner and doing some grocery shopping with DH, too. I've perfected the method that lets me get through the book without being a complete jerk to everyone else: 1) Get up and do whatever is required, immediately, cheerfully, and efficiently. 2) Check when completed if there is anything else needed? 3) If yes, repeat steps 1 and 2 until the answer is no. 4) When answer is no, stick nose back in book.
I think my feelings of dread led me to be less stupid about staying up all night just to read the thing, and less reluctant to put it down for a few hours at a time. It is a great read, don't get me wrong -- but big parts of me didn't want to read it, and parts of me are wishing that some things had gone much differently. The inevitability of these things is immaterial; I can still wish for something that would have forestalled the inevitable.