The Man Who Lived – To Be Middle Aged


Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, parts one and two, 2016

What a better way to start a book blog than with the newest Harry Potter! I’m reading (devouring) books all the time and more often than not feel the urge to tell about them to other bookworms. The best thing you can do with a good book is to share it with others, right?

I’m a potterhead – who isn’t? The original seven Harry Potter books are an amazing set. The plot, the characters, the whole Harry Potter universe are carefully thought through with keeping the tiniest details in mind. After the success of the series, the original saga has been continued in fanfiction in all possible and impossible ways. So, how to come up with something new now, nine years after the last book and a whole eternity of speculations later? Considering all this, it’s no easy feat to add another tome and make it work. Especially, when the writing is not done by J.K Rowling herself. So, while unwrapping the eighth book from its postal package, I had my doubts.

The eighth story in the Harry Potter saga tells the story nineteen years after the original ended. We’re back to the epilogue, Albus heading towards Hogwarts for the first time and the golden trio seeing their kids off for the school year. Albus and Rose climb on the train and decide to make the all important first friends already in the train – just like their parents. Albus meets Scorpius and the rest is history… In a way the beginning tells the theme of this story. It is constantly revisiting the original books and characters, sometimes hitting the bull’s eye, other times missing gigantically.

The book is not an actual novel, but a rehearsal script for a play. It makes a kind of a distanced impact compared with a  novel. I wonder if this is also part of the problem with the eighth Harry Potter story. It’s delivered in such a concise form, it doesn’t quite succeed in creating the suspence and expectation it would actually deserve. What is missing is also the well rounded worldbuild of the original Potter saga, with its humour, unique characters and description of the world that has enthralled so many readers.

However, despite all that, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a deacent read. The storyline flirts with fanfiction and gives a handful of new insights into the life of Harry Potter, sometimes bending the story of the original books. The Cursed Child has a kind of raw edge that was not present in the former books. What was previously perhaps only hinted on, is now bluntly exposed. However, towards the final twist of the plot the story takes on an entirely different logic from the previous books. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem very well motivated. It is probably true that this story is best to be seen on the stage.

Nevertheless, I read it at one go. After all the years with Potter, I just can’t put down a book telling me more about this world – even if it’s not quite pitch-perfect. As I doubt I’ll have a chance of seeing the play any time soon, I’m happy there’s a chance to another new potterstyle experience with the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them this autumn. Fingers crossed it will be worth the wait!


The eighth story, nineteen years later…

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 sone Albus must struggle with the wight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse oinously, both father and sone learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a new play by Jack Thorne. It is the eight Harry Potter story and the first to be officially presented on stage. This Special Rehearsal Edition of the script brings the ontinued journey of Harry Potter and his friends and family to readers everywhere, immediately following the play’s world premiere in London’s West End on 30 July 2016.

The stage production of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is produces by Sonia Friedman Productions, Colin Callender and Harry Potter Theathrical Productions.”


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