The last book of the Harry Potter series is out, and as I intended, got a copy and read it through. Since book 4, it's become a ...tradition?.... challenge? .... retreat from the world? to spend the entire day reading the book. This last chapter in the lives of Harry, Hermione, and Ron, along with their friends and enemies, took 15 hours, with a couple of hours of breaks interspersed along the way.
It might be the length, the never ending near misses until the final confrontation, the reiteration of old clues along with all the new twists and turns, but I was finding myself irritated with the proceedings a third of the way and mid-way, thankful that the end was nigh around 9 pm; learned that my suspicions about the so-called traitor in book 6 was right, and ran a tally of the primary characters who fell by the wayside as the book progressed on its gory way. There are a more than a few deaths, as hinted and press released by the author over the last few months, and their passing places this book amongst the older teen readership. Not something my 7 year old niece will be able to absorb at this time in her life.
(spoiler: did they graduate though? At the end of it all, the only one we know has a job is Neville.)