Okay, so… Where do I even start?!
I really, really loved Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. And I know that many people are on the fence about it and some people are disappointed or don’t like it at all, but I’m not one of those people and in this (spoiler free!) post I am going to attempt to tell you why.
When the news came out that Cursed Child was going to be a thing, but it was going to be a play and the book would “just” be the script, I wasn’t all that excited. Up until Sunday morning I wasn’t even planning on buying the book yet. “Maybe after a couple months,” I thought, because I was actually quite apprehensive – it could never be as good as the first seven books, right? But then I saw all the hype on Twitter and Instagram – I mean, people were so excited, it was great – and somehow I finally became excited as well. It was as if the idea of a new Harry Potter story hadn’t really entered my brain until then. All of a sudden I was all like “BUT IT’S A NEW HARRY POTTER STORY I HAVE TO READ IT RIGHT NOW“.
They started selling the book here at 12 in the afternoon on Sunday, so I made sure I was at the bookstore by then. There were only a handful of other people there, so it was really an in-and-out situation (I wanted to get home and start reading straightaway), but it really felt like a moment when I picked up that new book and walked with it to the cashier. I don’t want to get all soppy and sentimental, but — nah, let’s face it, this whole post is going to be soppy and sentimental.
It was a very emotional experience, okay?!
And then I started reading it. Cue even more emotions. I didn’t really know what I expected, but I was careful to go into it as open-minded as possible and to think of Cursed Child as a separate story from the books (but still canon). But as soon as I opened the book I was back in that world. The story might be different, both in format and tone, but the magic is the same. It’s still Hogwarts, and it’s still those characters I grew up with and have come to love so much (and a few new ones who rocked too).
Cursed Child focuses on Albus Severus Potter, Harry’s son, and the first two scenes are basically the final chapter of Deathly Hallows, which I really liked as a way to ease us back into the world. Albus really struggles with being “the son of Harry Potter”, especially because he feels he is not living up to the expectations that are set for him. I really enjoyed his character since he was much more flawed than Harry ever was. I’m not saying that Harry wasn’t flawed, but in the end he was the ultimate hero who saved the world. It was very interesting to see how Albus handled that family history.
My favourite character in this story was Scorpius Malfoy, though. He is Draco’s son but so different from him in every respect. I’m not going to say much more about him, because he’s such a cool character and I want everyone to be surprised, but I loved him. A lot. To me, he was the most vibrant character in the entire book.
While the plot was pretty cool, I mostly loved it because it revisited so many of the old characters, however briefly. The plot itself was not that amazing, I think, but really interesting nonetheless and I have no complaints about it whatsoever. The story completely sucked me in and I was very invested.
What I loved most about Cursed Child, though, is that it gave us a glimpse of how Harry ended up and who he ended up being. Up until the end of Deathly Hallows his life had been defined for a pretty huge part by his feud with Voldemort. After that, he finally got to be his own person and I enjoyed seeing him like that, even for just a little bit. I know some people didn’t like the last chapter of Deathly Hallows because they didn’t want to be forced to accept a vision of Harry’s later life instead of being able to imagine it themselves, but I loved it. Same goes for Cursed Child. I should say, though, as far as I’m concerned J.K. Rowling can do no wrong.
I read Cursed Child within 24 hours, and after I finished it I really didn’t know what to do with myself for a little while. Over the years there’ve been multiple occasions where I’ve had conversations with friends that went along the lines of “I’d give anything to be able to read Harry Potter again without knowing what’s going to happen. Imagine having that feeling again.” For a short period of time, I did have that feeling again, and it was so good to be back.
I’m not even close to being done talking about this book, so I think I’m going to do another post in which I’ll go into more depth about the story – meaning it will feature spoilers. Let me know if you’re interested in a post like that!