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on 2 November 2006
The second book to J K Rowling's classic Harry Potter series is even better than the first book. Harry returns to Hogwarts, where everything is okay untill Halloween night when Filch's cat Mrs Norris is found petrified. On the wall is a message saying that the chamber of secrets has been opened.

Harry, Ron and Hermoine learn the legend of Salazar Slytherin who apparently built a secret chamber within Hogwarts and hid a monster inside. His heir would some day come to Hogwarts, open the chamber and set the monster loose and kill as much muggle borns as possible.

People begin to suspect that Harry is the heir of Slytherin when they learn he has the ability to talk to snakes, which Slytherin was famous for. But Harry, Ron and Hermoine suspects it's Malfoy. With their help, Harry attempts to uncover the truth to who Slytherin's heir is, where the chamber of secrets is and what the monster is. It's a really good book, feauturing some new characters such as the annoying first year Colin Creevy, the iritating house elf Dobby, Draco Malfoy's Father Lucius, Arthur Weasley (Ron's dad) and the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, the famous Gilderoy Lockhart, who fancies himself (not literally, but you know what I mean).

Harry spends the summer holidays with the Weasleys. Despite how poor they are and how poor their house is compared to most wizardring houses, harry is still amazed by it. The Dursleys return also and still treat Harry like dirt; even on his own birthday. Like the first book, the second book is an addictive book to read and this is where Harry's adventures really begins. He has a better way of getting into Hogwarts this year, he returns to the forbidden forest, this time seeking a giant spider and faces a really deadly basilisk and for the third time in his life he comes face to face Voldemort. If you loved the first book, then you'll love this book even more.
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on 22 December 2011
This is the 2nd HP Ultimate Edition boxset. This edition is red (UE 1 was blue) with a cardboard sleeve. The box inside is solid and and very well-presented with lovely detailing. Inside there is a hardback 'Creating The Characters of Harry Potter' photo album featuring lots of pictures of the cast and some interesting concept drawings. There is also a paper folder which contains two artcards - Hagrid and Harry Potter - and a digital film code leaflet.
The discs themselves are housed in a separate fold-out dvd set:
Disc 1: Blu-Ray Movie (Theatrical Version)
Disc 2: DVD Movie (Theatrical Version)
Disc 3: DVD Movie (Extended Version)
Disc 4: DVD Special Features (Conversation With J.K.Rowling and Screenwriter Steve Kloves, 16 Mins of Additional Scenes, Sketch Gallery, Build A Scene, Tour of Chamber of Secrets, Diagon Alley, Dumbledores Office, Character Q&As, Character Snapshots
Disc 5: DVD 'Creating The Characters of Harry Potter' Documentary with Screen Tests, Trailers & TV Spots (1. The Magic Begins 2. Characters 3. Magical Creatures 4. Sound & Music 5. The Evolution of Harry Potter 6. Special Effects 7. Growing Up Potter 8. The Harry Potter Phenomenon)
Although this edition is marketed as a Blu-Ray set, please be aware that only one disc is a Blu-Ray which is my only complaint. Unfortunately the UK version does not contain a Blu-Ray extended version of the film which is really disappointing, especially when the US version of this boxset has one. However, the DVD extended version of the film is still great to watch with some worthwhile scene additions. Some of the extras here have been featured before on other Potter discs but the documentary on Disc 5 is new and interesting, offering a fantastic behind-the-scenes look with the cast. There's some lovely sections of the cast reading extracts of the books which is great to watch. Overall I think this set is magical and a wonderful edition for any fan... it's just a shame there's not an extra Blu-Ray extended version of the film.
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on 14 November 2005
I fell in love with this series and I’ve listened to the audio books more times than I could possibly count. I wore out the tapes and moved on to CDs.
Stephen Fry is with out a doubt the best narrator I have ever heard, and has won awards for more than one of his Harry Potter readings. He distinguishes between the character’s voices so well, that it really could be an entire cast performance. I find myself smiling in recognition of a character’s voice even before he says whose speaking.
The first two books were the most light-hearted of the series, and there are some truly classic moments in this book. The flying car sequence is excellent, Harry’s valentine had me laughing so much I had to stop the book, and Lockheart is just fantastic. It was equally gripping as Philosopher’s stone. I think the scene in the chamber of secrets is one of the best written sequences in the series. But this book also has a darker side too. I remember the shiver down my spine as I first heard the chilling voice of the Basilisk. I thought the series got better with every book, though I adore them all, but from here onwards, the series becomes a much more complex, deeper and many layered story, so enjoy the fun.
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on 7 May 2003
Theres not much you can say about the Chamber of Secrets or indeed any of the Harry Potter series that hasn't been said already!
I'm 26 and was very weary of all the outstanding reviews these books have got, and after all they are childrens books. Surely I thought it must be too good to be true. However I bought the first book and WOW! I couldn't put it down, I finished it that day!
My advice would be to buy these books right now! They really are compulsive reading. Whether you are an avid reader or have never read a book before in your life, you'll be totally taken in with this books.
I think we owe J K Rowling a lot for these truly magical books (no pun intended)!!
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on 16 January 2000
I've read all the Harry Potter books that have been released, and I truly loved them. I read them all out loud to my younger sister, and I must say they are amazing books. I like the third book the most, then the first book, and at last the second book. But that doesn't mean I don't like it. Oh no, I love Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets very much. The plot is extremely cool, and I was second guessing the whole time I read it. I know I will read all these books again. And I think it is extraordinary that the author managed to write such a good sequel!! That doesn't happen a lot! Go J. K. Rowling. I really can't wait for the forth release!
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on 29 October 2003
Not only does Steven Fry do this ostentatious story justice but also the character Lockhart is the most hilarious thing on audio CD! Phrases like: 'Harry, Harry, Harry', and 'Fame is a fickle friend', gave us hours of tumultuous hysterics. This story is for all ages and despite not being the best of the novels, it is the epitome of family fun, and if you can only buy one set of CDs/tapes this should be the one. J. K. Rowling mixes wit, an intoxicating plot, vivid description and a fascinating culture into an unforgettable experience. This is the ultimate 'must-have' of the audio CD world. Stephen, you have created a masterpiece out of a masterpiece.
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on 4 June 2007
Stephe Fry's narration is far and away the best that I have listened to over many years of enjoying audio books. Each and every character has their own distinctive and perfectly-judged voice, so that you know instantly who is speaking before the name is given. This makes it so much easier to simply enjoy the wonderful story without being distracted by confusion as to who is saying what, as so often happens with other narrators. We bought all of the other Harry Potter CDs, and they have all been great. I recommend listening to these stories whilst curled up on the sofa on a Winter's evening over any T.V program that I can think of.
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on 24 February 2003
After accompanying my children to the cinema to see the first Harry Potter adaptation, I must admit that I was quite looking forward to spending 2.5 hours in the company of the Hogwarts hosts, and my enthusiasm wasn't un-rewarded. Once again the time flew by far too quickly and my kids were again awestruck by the sheer scale of the deception.
There were shocks and surprises along the way. The first shock was how much Daniel and Rupert have grown since the last film, in looks, height, and confidence. Daniel's lower voice took a few scenes to get used to as well. The biggest surprise was the brilliant portrayal of Gilderoy Lockheart by Kenneth Branagh, who stole every scene he appeared in and brought much of the humor of the books into the script.
Obviously keen to overcome some criticisms of the first film, director Chris Columbus tried to include as many parts of the storyline from the book as he reasonably could in the time and as a consequence the pace never lets up. Fortunately the plot isn't too complicated (unlike the next book) so kids won't have too much trouble keeping up.
Once again excellent performances from the adults and the 3 lead children, Emma Watson settling into the role of Hermione as if she was born to play her. Ruperts facial expressions of fear, whilst funny at first, did start to wear thin towards the end, and Tom Feltons portrayal of Draco was, to be honest, embarrassing, but cut thankfully short.
All in all a thoroughly enjoyable film, better than the first, a little scarier (especially if you are afraid of spiders !) and a must have DVD for your collection when released.
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on 6 December 1998
I bought Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone in a bookshop to read to my two sons (7 and 9), and they were enthralled; my wife could hardly believe her eyes when she interrupted the showdown at the finish and discovered them both sitting bolt upright holding their breath! When we found the Chamber of Secrets in the local library we had to get it out immediately. I found it even better than the first, to the extent that I could not wait to read it at bedtime before finishing it. To my mind it is better paced than the Philosopher's Stone, which I felt was a bit slow in setting up the really exciting bit; the Chamber of Secrets starts to hot up about half way through in a well-judged crescendo. But it is even better at developing the characters, including the ever so vital Hermione, who gets a bit more get-up-and-go just when it's needed. This is not a great children's book; it's just a great book. When the paperback is out, we'll be getting a copy.
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on 22 May 2001
I love Stephen Fry's reading of this book. Although it is typically recommended for 9 years and up, my daughter, who is just five, is already hooked. Fry's clear reading makes the story easy to follow even for younger listeners.
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