I know I’m a little behind the times here, but I’ve just finished Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and, of course, I loved it.
I wasn’t really sure how to approach the story because I was afraid that I would find the story to be too clichéd and predictable. To be honest, there was a little bit of that — I certainly found parts of the play to be trite. But I also felt as if it hit a perfect balance familiarity and nostalgia.
Also, I was impressed at how J.K. Rowling seemed to know her audience so well. Most of the people reading the play (or going to watch the play, for that matter) are likely people who grew up with Harry Potter; People like me who were in seventh grade when the first HP came out and are now grown adults with children of our own.
I grew up alongside Harry, so I found Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to be a nice continuation of the fictional relationship that I’ve built with him and his fictional friends throughout out lifetimes. It was nice to see Harry, Ginny, Hermoine and Ron as adults, facing their own parenting challenges, and to discover that hey, even Harry Potter isn’t the perfect parent.
With all that being said, HP and the Cursed Child was exactly what you would expect it to be. Because of the difference in format (the new book is written as a play rather than a novel), some parts of the story seemed to be a bit thin as compared to the previous Harry Potter books. By that, I mean that some of the emotion that can be felt in the novels was lost through the play, but I imagine that a lot of that is made up when watching the play performed live.
Nevertheless, The Cursed Child is interesting because it gives longtime Harry Potter fans a glimpse into what could have happened had things turned out differently in the previous HP books. Through the use of a time turner, Harry Potter’s son Albus is able to go back in time and dramatically change history. When he takes things too far and a surprise evil-doer shows up, Albus has to mend his relationship with his father in order to make things right again.
The story is somewhat predictable, but it’s a fun and easy read. If you’ve been a life-long Harry Potter fan, it’s definitely worth the read.