Series: Harry Potter #8
Published by Little Brown UK on July 31st 2016
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Fiction, Young Adult
Amazon | Book Depository | Publisher | Angus & Robertson
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Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.
It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.
While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.
Like most readers, I’ve been highly anticipating Harry Potter and the Cursed Child since I first heard that the script was going to be released in book form. But I actually knew nothing about the plot going into the story and I think that worked in my favour. I had very few expectations and I ended up really enjoying the story and the characters.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a collaboration between J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne. Even though Rowling has been involved in this project, I don’t believe she had anything to do with the writing of the script itself (correct me if I’m wrong). And because of this, the script read more like fanfiction to me. I definitely don’t consider this to be canon and it reads very differently to the Harry Potter novels. There were some elements in the story that didn’t fit in with my knowledge of the Harry Potter world and sometimes it felt a little bit contradictory and inaccurate to me. Having said that, I mostly just tried to go with the flow and I enjoyed the story a lot once I had let go of the fact that it wasn’t exactly going to be Harry Potter.
In terms of the story itself, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child follows Albus Severus Potter, who’s living in the shadow of his father’s greatness. He’s not the brave and adventurous boy that everyone expects him to be… and on top of that, he’s not even a Gryffindor. Because of the tough time he’s having at Hogwarts, he resents his father and all the people who have suffered in order for his father to claim glory. When the opportunity arises for him to travel back in time to save Cedric Diggory from dying, he leaps at the chance and drags his best friend, Scorpius Malfoy, into his incredibly stupid plans. I really loved the plot of this book. It was wild and crazy and just absolutely ridiculous. But it was so crazy and mindblowing that I couldn’t help but just be completely sucked into the story and I highly enjoyed it all. I loved that the book was about saving Cedric Diggory and how unexpected that was. I thought the plot was adventurous and a lot of fun. It was filled with humorous moments and lots of hilarious lines. My one criticism was that, because of the format of this book, it was hard to imagine some of the things happening. I think knowing that this entire play is going to be performed distracted me a little as well, and I found myself trying to picture how certain scenes were going to be executed and wasn’t able to really imagine some things playing out.
I loved the huge cast of characters in this play. There were so many beloved characters from the original series, and I enjoyed seeing them all again in this script. Because the characters use a Time Turner to travel back in time, I got to see characters who I never thought I’d see again and it was so nostalgic and amazing. I also loved meeting all the new characters and Scorpius Malfoy was definitely my favourite. Draco Malfoy has been my favourite Harry Potter character from the very beginning but his son definitely gives him a run for his money. Scorpius is cute, geeky and sensible and I loved his character so, so much! And as minor of an element as it was, I really enjoyed the developing romance between Scorpius and Rose Granger-Weasley. If I can’t have my Dramione ship, then Scorpius and Rose will have to do. But most of all I loved the friendship between Scorpius and Albus. I thought they had a really strong bond and were a wonderful duo, despite being self-proclaimed losers.
While this script and story isn’t faultless and I wouldn’t really consider it to be canon, I still highly enjoyed it. I was expecting it to be a little bit dark and serious and I think it was the exact opposite. It was light-hearted and fun, with some darkness sprinkled throughout. The characters were amazing and I can definitely see myself rereading this over and over.
Rating: 4 out of 5
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