Author: J.K. Rowling
Title: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkeban
Narrator: Jim Dale
Publication Info: Listening Library, 2000 [Originally published, 1999]
The third volume in the Harry Potter series may be my favorite of them all. It’s hard to compare since the later books are so different from the earlier books that they’re almost a different genre. The Prisoner of Azkeban is the last of the shorter, self-contained novels and the most well-plotted of the three.
In retrospect, it’s really impressive how well Rowling sells Sirius Black as a villain, knowing that he will become Harry’s mentor and father-figure. I also like how this book establishes the background of the Marauders which sets the stage for the return of Voldemort and the Second Wizarding War in book 4. But mostly it’s a ripping yarn, a mystery that somehow ties together a werewolf, a magical map, time travel, and Dementors, Rowling’s creepiest creatures of all.