Ok, I pre-ordered the book roughly four weeks into release. I didn't order it in any big bookstore chains eg; MPH, Popular, Kinokuniya or Borders. I didn't attend any lavish pre-launch party, re-read all the six books, dress up as wizard (imagine how gay I would look), trying to sign up a magic course, Wiccanism or even Satanism (lol), or spend stupid money buying books such as "WILL HARRY SURVIVES IN BOOK 7" or speculative crap that some idiots decides to spin some money from guillable Pottermaniacs. No I didn't camp outside the bookstore I pre-ordered (some bookstore at Damansara Uptown which offered RM 20 gift voucher as rebate which isn't bad) several hours or days prior to it's release. And I can't finish the book in 7 hours course I have very important things to do in live like trying to prepare for a choir concert and work. Maybe I should have because I read Berita Harian (some Malay language paper) and an idiot AP reporter helped to spoil the book (yes, Harry actually didn't die *).
Good for you guys who grabbed the book at RM 69.90 from Tesco or Carrefour. I didn't regret pre-ordered it, it's better than waiting half a year and then get bombarded with spoilers which ruined my Half-Blood Prince experience (although getting RM 39.90 for a hard cover version is worth it). Although what's with Bloomsbury and J.K Rowling trying to milk the worth of this book with RM 109.90 price tag?! (dun ask me how many pounds izzit, count your maths). The Fifth book (Order of the Phoenix) was the thickest with roughly 140 pages more than DH and costs 20 ringgit cheaper. Oh well, the hypermarket giants decided to spoil the party by offering the book at ridiculously rock-bottom price it made you want to bang your head on the war for pre-ordering. Who needs all the fancy, unnecessary parties when you can just slash the book price and dangle em' like a carrot? A bookstore who participated in a boycott against the hypermarket tycoons (and backfired reeeaaaallll badly) complained that they need the profits to cover the costs of holding lavish wizarding parties for Potter-maniacs. Then again, it's not that bad to hire Justin Timberlake and sing for them "Cry me a river". =P
How was the book? I had a little mixed feelings like the others. I like the way she handles the theme of death, which Rowling got Potterites obssessed about it since Cedric Diggory's death in book 4, and it's not just the silly "WHO GONNA DIE NEXT" like the bookmakers predicting whether Manchester United will win the Premiership again. The theme plays a central part in the climax of the novel, which would've been awesome had not some stupid reporter spoiled it again =P. There are moments of genuine terror and suspense and the "Armageddon" in book is handled quite well but apart from it are pickets of rotten apples. Searching for horcruxes becomes more of a challenge for readers to get over than for the character themselves and sometimes readers might ask if "are they freakin' going anywhere?!" and "will somebody smack the bejebus out of Hermione?!". And yeah, the epilogue SERIOUSLY read like some fan-fiction crap. I think I emphathise with a lot of readers not knowing the fate of other characters especially LUNA LOVEGOOD, OMG!!! Part of why Lord of the Rings billions of times more cojones than Harry Potter will ever be because the epilogue and aftermath after the ring's destruction is ultimately satisfying. Seriously Rowling, millions of Potterites don't mind spending another 30 pounds or so if you could re-write a decent ending for the book.