Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

It was inevitable I was going to review this, wasn’t it?

The latest Harry Potter book is out. Sadly my copy was not delivered by owl on Sunday (to quote Vernon Dursley “There’s no post of Sundays“) but instead arrived via Amazon on Tuesday. As most people know I am a massive J K Rowling fan but is her latest book worth the hype?

Be warned this review contains mild spoilers.

The book serves as a good re-introduction to the Harry Potter Universe. We see the return of old characters and the development of new ones, most notably Harry’s children. The epilogue of Deathly Hallows is expanded on and we witness several other notable events of the series from a different character’s view point. The book also manages to solve some of the previous plot holes such as, “why is everyone in Sytherin House evil?” It certainly has a Rowling feel to it as the plot twists and turns and contains layers and layers of subplot (although at some points it feels a bit farfetched). It feels like a Harry Potter book which is a nice surprise considering it is a different medium.

I do have a few issues with Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (hides from the hard-core  Potter fans). It annoys me that of all the mediums she could have chosen, Rowling decided to produce a play. I have nothing against plays but the fact the play is only in London and the tickets are A) ridiculously expensive and B) sold out almost immediately, isolates many members of the Harry Potter fan base. A prestige will appear between the fans who can afford to see the play and those who can not. J K Rowling’s financial history has been well documented by the media. She has described herself  as being “as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain, without being homeless” so the fact she has produced the next part of Harry’s story as a play is very surprising as a good percentage of her fan base will not be able to afford to see it.

The second issue I have is that the book of the Cursed Child is not a novel but a copy of the script used by the actors. I can see the reason behind this (If there is a script available why not publish it?) but I am disappointed that it isn’t a novel. I had to pause several times and think about which characters were related to who, who knew what about this event and that event. It may be a good idea to re read some of the previous Harry Potter books before starting the Cursed Child.

Rowling has said that this play is the last Harry Potter story but she has said similar things before. When Deathly Hallows was released she said that was the end. We also have the film trilogy Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in the works (I’ll withhold my opinion on the film until I’ve seen it) so I will be surprised if this is the last we see of Harry Potter.

Regardless I enjoyed reading the script and I’ll probably re-read it a few times before loaning my copy out to family and friends

I’ll award Harry Potter and the Cursed Child 3 out of 5 owls.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Do you have any idea how annoying it is to walk past this on your way to work everyday?

What did you think of the script? Do you plan to see the play? Let me know but be wary of posting spoilers for others to see.

Comments

8 comments on “Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child”
  1. Thanks, Jack. I’m not a HP fan but have daughters (now adult) who grew up with HP. I agree with what you say about the inaccessibility of the play – my elder daughter works in London & I asked if she planned to go see it and she said it was unlikely given that it was already sold out.
    It wouldn’t surprise me if there wasn’t a film made at some point in the future.

    Like

    1. Jack Dowd says:

      Hi Sally, I’m sure there will be a film at some point but at least everyone will be able to see it. Jack

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well another issue is that she didn’t actually write this… which I find a little confounding if I’m honest. Great review- I’ve heard mixed things so far, so I’m not sure about it still, but I am interested in the whole thing about why Slytherins are evil

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    1. Jack Dowd says:

      Hello, yes she wrote it along with two other writers. So it isn’t really a JK Rowling book. I think it’s worth a read but it isn’t essential.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hiya, yup- I don’t think it’s for me- I’m very fussy about reading plays- I try not to do it unless it’s something like Shakespeare or Beckett or someone of that calibre, cos they just don’t work properly otherwise and I don’t want to judge them unfairly

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      2. Jack Dowd says:

        The thing with plays is that they were meant to be performed, not read. You don’t get the full impact reading it which is why many English lessons suddenly turn into drama classes. 🙂 I must admit, I don’t normally read plays either.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: My top ten books

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