We finished reading The Deathly Hallows at 1:30 this morning. John and I read the book aloud together so I had to endure a few days of looking at the book but not being able to read while he was at work. Torture!
Now that we have finished I have to say I absolutely loved it! It was a little long in the beginning when Harry, Ron and Hermione are wandering somewhat aimlessly looking for horcruxes (horcruxi?) but otherwise I think JK Rowling did a fabulous job adding all sorts of new, interesting details and keeping true to the characters and resolving the issues she presented.
I loved all of the details about Dumbledore's past! Children forget sometimes that their parents or teachers were children before and have lives of their own. Rowling displayed this brilliantly and Harry's discovery of Dumbledore past enabled Harry to face his own issues and fears despite his anger at Dumbledore. I sobbed through the 3rd to last chapter when Harry was walking to meet Voldemort and his death - which made things difficult as I was the one reading at the time. It is very hard to read and cry at the same time! John had to take over for me.
I loved all of the little details that were in the book. Potterwatch was a brilliant addition to the story - especially with Lee Jordan as the broadcaster. Neville's rebellious courage and guerilla warfare at Hogwarts had me standing up and cheering! Best of all was the introduction of the Deathly Hallows by known crackpot Xenophilias Lovegood. So funny that the truth of the story came from him and that Harry when faced between the choice of ultimate power (gaining the Hallows) or the destruction of Voldemort (destroying the horcruxes) - Harry opted for the greater good. Interesting that the power hungry wizards Voldemort and Grindelwald were destroyed in their quest for the most powerful wand and with it their unrighteous quest for domination. So much great social commentary and religious symbolism I could get a little carried away so I think I will stop there.
Just one more thing... JK Rowling deserves every penny she earns for this book and all the others in the series. Any author that gets people (myself included) to stand in line for hours in the middle of the night just for a book, deserves to be richer than the queen!