9 Things I Didn't Realise I Had Forgotten about the Prisoner of Azkaban

18:32 Cilla P 8 Comments

I am a die-hard Potterhead. I know the movies by heart. I write Harry Potter fanfictions. "You still love Harry Potter?" "Always." I remember everything about the books. Or so I thought.

See, I left my copies of Harry Potter at my parents' house, and so the only one I've reread in the last five years or so is Deathly Hallows. I've contented myself with the movies, which air on a regular basis on TV anyway, until recently when I discovered the audiobooks. Narrated by Stephen Fry, they're brilliant as bedtime stories. It wasn't until I got to Prisoner of Azkaban that I discovered something else: I've forgotten some details about the book's version of events.

Insert multiple shocked-face emojis here.

Beware: spoilers ahead if you haven't read the book.

1. The 'faulty' sneakoscope

For his thirteenth birthday, Harry received a sneakoscope for Ron. It's a device that lights up and spins around if someone's untrustworthy is nearby. Ron believed it was broken because it kept lighting up when he got it. But it wasn't broken! Someone untrustworthy was nearby!

2. Cedric Diggory's and Cho Chang's first appearances

Cedric is the one and only Seeker to have ever beaten Harry. True, he won because Harry had blacked out due to the Dementors' appearance during the match. The important part of his whole appearance though, for me, is the fact that he felt bad about winning. He even tried to take it back. If that's not the sign of a good guy, I don't know what is.

Cho Chang also appeared during a Quidditch match, and she was the only girl on the Ravenclaw team! Go Cho! Harry didn't just notice that she was pretty, but also thought she must be "undoubtedly a very good flyer". I've always been defensive of Cho, and this just makes me even more so. She's such an interesting character!

3. The Firebolt debacle

Now, I didn't forget that Harry received his Firebolt in PoA and that its arrival temporarily ripped our trio apart. What I'd forgotten was this gem from Oliver Wood:

“Bad news, Harry. I've just been to see Professor McGonagall about the Firebolt. She – er, got a bit shirty with me. Told me I'd got my priorities wrong. Seemed to think I cared more about winning the Cup than I do about staying alive. Just because I told her I didn't care if it threw you off, as long as you caught the Snitch first."

Wood and his obsession with Quidditch should totally have stayed in the movies.

4. The Quidditch Cup

I'd forgotten how much Quidditch we get in the book! That final match against the Slytherin is - hands down - the best Quidditch match in the series. I remembered the results, but I'd forgotten how intense it got. Stephen Fry's narration made it even more exhilarating, and I cried a little bit at the end.

5. Hermione under pressure

Hermione bit so much more than she could chew in her third year, and she was pushed to the edge. I forgot how much I loved seeing this: that while she is the brightest witch of her age, she makes mistakes. She tried to do too much and failed, but that doesn't make her any less brilliant. It just means she can go easy on herself.

6. "Get away from me, werewolf."

This is a scene I never thought about the first time around, but it struck me hard this time. Remus Lupin had been their favourite teacher all year, but as soon as his lycanthropy came out, their first instinct was to reject him. Of course, at this stage, Ron, Hermione and Harry thinks Remus has been helping a serial killer, but still! Imagine how this feels in that moment for him.

7. Snape is an awful teacher

This is one of the reasons I have little sympathy for Snape. He bullied and intimidated his students. The word 'bullied' was actually used to describe him. He called Hermione 'an insufferable know-it-all' in front of the her whole class. He was literally the worst fear of a thirteen-year-old boy, and you can see why:

"Possibly no one's warned you, Lupin, but this class contains Neville Longbottom. I would advise you not to entrust him with anything difficult. Not unless Miss Granger is hissing instructions in his ear."

I was appalled by this as a teenager, but now that I've been a teacher, this makes me angry. It's one thing to remark to another teacher that a student has difficulties in the staff room, quite another to do it in front of said student and his peers. Is it any wonder Neville does so poorly in Potions? 

8. Draco, Crabbe and Goyle pretending to be dementors

The Quidditch matches in this book are gold for the plot and character developments. Harry was so confident with his patronus that he didn't think twice about whipping his wand out when dementors broke into the match again. Only they weren't real dementors... 

9. Security trolls outside of the Gryffindor common room

Enough said.

Let's talk!
Are you a Potterhead too? 
Have you ever found yourself remembering more of the movie than the book?
What's your favourite thing about the Prisoner of Azkaban?


  1. Great post!!! Totally agree with all of this :D I love the way the Harry/Cho thing is built up over 3,4 and 5, it's so cleverly done and he likes her for so long! I think that's why Harry/Ginny feels a bit sudden. All the Ron/Hermione stuff is really interesting in this one as well - it feels like the start of them as a couple I think. And I love how Hermione has Hagrid on her side when the boys are being horrible over the Firebolt, you always think of Hagrid as more Harry's friend, but I love how he's there for her. (Going to stop now, I could go on for ever, haha)

    1. Thanks, Catherine! :D I agree, I quite enjoyed the Harry/Cho relationship, though I don't think they'd ever work out after Cedric. I agree about the Ron/Hermione stuff! I think something did shift between Ron/Hermione here - I thought it was interesting that Ron was the first to notice that Hermione was missing/popping in out of nowhere rather than Harry. Yess, Hagrid's role in the group grows in this book which I adore! Haha, I'm always up for gushing over Harry Potter! :D

  2. Prisoner of Azkaban is my favorite Harry Potter book, so I've reread it enough times that I remember most of the things on this list. But I COMPLETELY forgot about the security trolls! And that seems like something I'd remember, too!

    1. The security trolls are hilarious! Or at least imagining them pacing the corridor in front of the Gryffindor's common room made me giggle. :D

  3. OMG! The Prisoner of Azkaban is my favorite Harry Potter tale! I'd forgotten everything you listed! LOL! I really want to read the whole series again sometime, especially this one! Awesome post! Thanks for reminding me why I love Azkaban so much! :D Happy reading!

    1. Lol I'm glad I'm not the only one who had forgotten these things! You should re-read the series again when you have the time - I'm enjoying doing it with the Stephen Fry audiobooks. :D Thank you for stopping by!

  4. Before having kids, I'd only read each book once, then watched the movie. Now I've seen the first three movies a couple of times, and re-read the first two books out loud, so those are the ones I'm most familiar with. Prisoner of Azkaban is up next for our summer read-aloud, so I'll watch for those details!

    1. Ooh have fun with the read-aloud! :D This is my first re-read of the series in forever, and given I've forgotten a bunch of details such as, it's the closest I get to discovering the books all over again.


Thanks for reading! It makes my day to hear your thoughts and I will respond asap. :)