Book Reviews

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts One and Two: The Official Playscript of the Original West End Production by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne

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List Price: £8.99

 

Paperback: 352 Pages.

Published: 25 July 2017 by Sphere

Edition: 01

ISBN: 9780751565362

EAN: 9780751565362

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play received its world premiere in London’s West End on 30th July 2016.

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

Reviews

5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars5.0 Stars  by Anne

The format is limiting but I loved it

This is a play. It is pointless expecting character development and subtlety because it is not a novel. What you get are stage directions and what the characters say and you have to fill in the gaps yourself because that would normally be the job of the director and the actors. Fortunately having already read seven books set in the same universe and knowing the back story and the characters well you are better placed to do this here than you would be with other plays. I am used to reading plays but those who aren't may have more difficulty with the concept and might enjoy the script better after seeing the play. I have not seen the play.

The author(s) revisit some of the characters and situations in the books in a story set after the end of them when Harry is struggling to be the best father he can and a new generation is starting at Hogwarts. I feel that this would all be totally incomprehensible to anyone who doesn't know the existing story - new readers, do not start here. I am not going to reveal the mechanism which is used to frame this story but it is clever and at times very funny. It also allows this play to address some perceived character inconsistencies in the original books.

I thought that this was a great piece of fun. It pays homage to the original series and doesn't contradict it in any way but fans of the books don't have to read this as it doesn't throw new light on the story we already know. I have to admire the way that it adds to the overall story arc and even illuminates it in places without being part of it.

I enjoyed this play a lot but it has its limitations because of the format. I thought it was clever but it has no real heart because that would evolve in the staging. Don't expect more than a play script can deliver and you should enjoy this trip back into the world of Harry Potter (although, of course, I would have preferred a new novel !!)

 
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