Book Review – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne
Book: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Author: J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne
Year of Release: 2016
Read 327-page hardcover edition in October 2016.
In the newest entry to the Harry Potter universe, Rowling has teamed up with John Tiffany and Jack Thorne to develop a play, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.
This script for the play, which opened in July 2016 in London, focuses on the story of Harry’s youngest son Albus Severus Potter, 19 years after the last events of the Harry Potter book series. We see family strain as Harry tries to connect with his distant son, who is in his early years at Hogwarts. Albus is not like Harry in many ways. To Harry’s chagrin, he has also befriended Scorpius, the son of Draco Malfoy.
However, things become very serious when Albus and Scorpius try to do something good, but it leads to major problems that could see the existence of the entire world put at risk, and with evil powers that were thought destroyed rising again.
For the most part, this was definitely a successful new entry into the Harry Potter universe. Rowling, Tiffany, and Thorne do a great job providing some insight and commentary on the characters we love, while at the same time focusing the story on two main characters from a “new generation,” namely Albus and Scorpius.
The decision of the authors to make Albus and Scorpius quite unlike their fathers in many respects adds intrigue, amusement, and realism to the plot. The two teenagers and their unlikely friendship are interesting to read about and observe, as it develops through the course of the novel. The sections on the feelings behind Albus’s actions, and the clear sense of humour that Scorpius has, are some of the stronger points in the book.
It is also enjoyable to read about some of our favourite characters, and see where they have ended up nineteen years after the last novel. The authors do a nice job of weaving these characters into a new plot and new adventure, along with new characters.
Although learning about old characters makes sense, one downside to this book was that some of the plot advances on the basis of tools that we have seen in prior Harry Potter novels. Devices such as using polyjuice potion to sneak into a room, or using a time turner, are things that have been done successfully before. Although it makes sense we will see some spells again, there were large sections of plot that felt a little bit repetitive in terms of how they advanced.
The structure of the book is written in play format, and although it feels a little choppy to delve into at first, you quickly develop a good flow and rhythm in the reading, and the story unfolds in a very fast paced way.
Overall, this is an interesting and fun adventure to add to the Harry Potter universe, and reading this makes one want to see the play.
Overall: 4 stars out of 5 stars