The book opens with 'The villagers of Little Haggleton still called it the Riddle House...' and I was completely non-plussed for a moment until I remembered how awesomely this book opens! Not with Dursleys and Harry being treated badly – that doesn't come around until chapter 2. No, the start of GoF is intense!
This is such a good episode in the series. There are some really glorious scenes, such as when the Weasleys come to pick Harry up for the World Cup, the World Cup itself, dress robes, dance lessons ... anything that features the suddenly cool and hot Ginny. (I'm a total Ginny fan girl)
The scenes where Harry and Ron are struggling to ask out a couple of girls to the Yule Ball are just so accurately written you can't help but smile the whole way though. Ron's a bit of a tosser, only wanting to take the prettiest girl possible and J.K. Rowling also gives us the first hints in the series of Ron and Hermione and their upcoming emotional tug-of-war in Ron's petty anger and jealousy of Viktor Krum and Hermione's unhappiness at Ron's shallowness and bitterness.
I have bad memories of the horror and embarrassment that went along with having to ask boys to dance practise and eventually graduation in primary school. High school dances were easier – that asking to dance was just a tap on the shoulder, and shrug of acceptance and then some uncomfortable grinding and ass-grabbing.
The dance lessons scenes in the movie don't exist in the book, but I forgive the movie makers, just for this:
Goblet of Fire also has my favourite little moment in the series and it goes something like this:
Moody swept the dead spider off his desk and onto the floor.“Not nice,” he said calmly. “Not pleasant. And there's no counter-curse. There's no blocking it. Only one known person has ever survived it, and he's sitting right in front of me."
Thrills me very time. Shivers down the spine sort of stuff.
It's in GoF that we first learn of Snape's Death Eater past and the absolute faith Dumbledore has put in him and his conversion to the right side. Harry sees all this in the Penseive and when he asks Dumbledore why he trusts that Snape stopped supporting Lord Voldemort;
“Harry, that is a matter between Professor Snape and myself”.
But WE KNOW!
Then of course, there are final scenes where Voldemort comes back. There is no way anyone could have been expecting that at the start of the book. These books tend to have whole block of chapters at the end where you can't put the book down! That starts here somewhere around the beginning of the third task somewhere around page 540 and doesn't stop until page 636.
It's SO GOOD!
The thin man stepped out of the cauldron, staring at Harry...and Harry stared back into the face that had haunted his nightmares for three years. Whiter than a skull, with wide, livid scarlet eyes, and a nose that was as flat as a snake's, with slits for nostrils …
Lord Voldemort had risen again.
Shit is getting REAL!