01 October, 2016

REVIEW: HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, Jack Thorne

Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Series: Harry Potter #8
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books
Source: Paperback
Pages: 327

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Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, 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 will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 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.


I learned about this book/play from Laura and Hannah actually, and I have read a number of reviews online both good and bad. One of my co-workers also suggested it to me, so going into I thought that I might not love it but I will at least like it, because it's Harry Potter, because I'm going back to Hogwarts and I will once again meet my beloved characters. Well...let's just say none of that happened what so ever!

Before I start with the review, I just want to quickly disclaim that the majority of the review will be without spoilers but in the Minus section there will be spoilers, so if you want to not be spoiled skip that section!

THE WORLD: The Hogwarts, Magic Wizard world that we know. I have to say it was nice to go back into that world again, the world where I spent so much time as a kid and young adult. So in this world we have flying letters, vomit flavored candy, time turners and most importantly - magic! Truly, it didn't differ from the world in the first seven Harry Potter books. Of course in this one, we also have, the so called alternative realities that some of the characters go to. I didn't like the majority of them but some I wanted to be expanded further and actually wouldn't mind reading a book or a play about that. 

CHARACTERS: We have the original trio - Harry, Ron and Hermione, which I have to say I did not like at all, maybe towards the end they were alright, but I just got so angry while reading this book-script because I felt offended as a HP fan. This book didn't contain the Harry I loved, the Ron I found hilarious or the Hermione I wanted to be - they were completely different people to me. Let's start with Harry. Obnoxious! and super rude! Who was this guy I don't even know! Ron - to all hardcore Ron fans out there, do not, I repeat do not read this book! They made Ron into a joke punchline! I had the least problem with Hermione, but again she would have NEVER acted so irrational as she did in this play. Oh yeah and Ginny and Draco - who by the way, I loved in this book! and there are some other characters as well, but not spoiling anything in this section!

Then we have the new generation. I remember I used to go to YouTube and watch fan made videos about the new generation of Harry Potter kids, and think that this would be such a cool TV show or even a movie series as well. And finally in this book I got the next generation of Harry Potter! Let me tell you, I'll stick with the YouTube videos instead. I apologies to people who enjoyed this book but the kids are all spoiled, rotten and I would like to smack all of them a good one! They were horrible!  Albus Potter - the middle kid of Harry and Ginny. He got on my nerves so much. Literally I dislike him so much, I can't even handle it. He had the worst attitude and for no reason. Nothing was good enough for him, he hated his parents, his siblings, Hogwarts, everything around him basically. He was the worst, little brat!

Rose Weasley - Ron and Hermione's daughter. No one in this entire world will convince me that a kid raised in the Granger-Weasley household ends up being so arrogant. She was just way over the top 'I want to be the best. I am the best, the rest of you are nothing, I am the best', seriously this girl needs some reality check. Also what I hated was that she was there to just be the love interest. Really authors....Really? I was really confused with the character named Delphi - who was Cedric Diggori's cousin but I was just so confused on why she was there cause she was 22 and the other kids were 15 max. I don't know seemed really weird! Now I did like Scorpius - Draco's son. He was the cutest little thing ever. Such a lovely, humble and nice boy.

However, let me just point out that I found it extremely weird that none of the other kids plaid any role in this book. For example James and Lily Potter. They are also Harry's kids right? What is James like, does he resemble his mother or father or maybe his grandfather? Or Lily, does she resemble her grandmother, is she shy, is she bold and brave? I have no idea, because none of this was in the book. There was absolutely no information about the other Potter kids apart from Albus. Sure they would come every 100 page or so to say a line or something but that's pretty much it. Oh, and I forgot, do you know who is mentioned once in the book? Hugo Weasley the son of Ron and Hermione. I have no idea if the boy is even alive at this point because he never makes an appearance. Great parenting skills m? I just found this irritating and annoying.

LOVE: Love doesn't really play much of a part in this book well not the 'I love you', love. But we have a lot of parent-child love issues and the problems that comes with having a famous parent. Of course from like page two we can understand that Scorpius likes Rose, and he ends up asking her out in the end which I find hilarious because they never, and I do mean never actually had a real conversation like two people who like each other. Rose basically just makes fun of Scorpius. And Albus starts to like Delphi, again bizarre because he's a kid and she's 22! However, there was one element in the play which I actually had to just stop and calm myself down because I felt like being fooled or made fun of by the writers and that is the relationship between Albus and Scorpius. I won't say anything else to not spoil, but if you like to read about that go to the Minus section. 

PLUS: I liked Scorpius, I think he was the only character that didn't make me want to punch a wall or roll my eyes or scream. He was cute, smart, funny. I liked the passages about Snape and Dumblerdore and James and Lily. I thought they were well written and made me tear up a little.

MINUS: Again just a disclaimer this section will contain spoilers! In order to not forget anything I want to say as always I will numerate the things I didn't like about this book. Again my apologies for the people who loved it you have the right to like this book, I have the right to not like it, so I'm sorry if some of the points will sound a little too harsh. Okay so here we go 1. Harry and Albus's relationship - As I said before I did not understand where this negative, emo attitude that Albus had in the book came from. I mean seriously he was just emo and a rebel without any reason, the way he would talk to Harry made me cringe and get mad. I had zero patience for this little boy stuff, but I guess it would still be not that bad because he was a kid after all. However, this person in the book that they called Harry Potter, must have been someone else because this was not my Harry, this was not our beloved Harry. He was rude, condescending and just plain awful. At one point while speaking to Albus he even says something like 'I wish you weren't my son'.

Never! My Harry Potter would NEVER say a thing like that! He grew up without love, without parental affection, such words would never ever ever come out of his mouth! He understand better than anyone how important a father's love is. So this just made me so angry I couldn't continue reading for some time. 2. Delphi in general - I had so many issues with this character and then it's revealed she's the daughter of Voldemort and Bellatrix. I started laughing out loud because I just couldn't believe the stupidity of this fact! This makes no sense! Absolutely no sense! I mean okay even if she was their daughter, when was she conceived? When did Bellatrix give birth to her because Delphi says she was born before the battle of Hogwarts, I mean come on, how stupid do they think we are? Voldemort didn't have sex, he didn't care about having sex, he cared about killing Harry and being immortal! The whole premise of this I don't understand.

3. Ron -  the portrayal of Ron in this book was a joke. This book made Ron into a moron, and I can't look pass this. I do not understand how J.K.Rowling allowed this. 4. Queer Baiting Albus and Scorpius - I could have looked pass all the things and just overlooked them but what made me even more angry than moron Ron or bully Harry was how the authors thought I, as a reader, would be so stupid to not understand they were totally queer-baiting me. Through out the entire book I literally thought that Albus and Scorpius were gay and that at the end they would realize that they are more than friends and maybe starts a relationship. So I was in a complete loss when at the end Scorpius is like 'I'm asking Rose out' I literally said 'What? Aren't you gay' out loud. I was so mad, because in the entire book both Albus and Scorpius say things like 'He is my best friend/I can't live without him/You can't keep us apart/He is the only thing that makes Hogwarts bearable' and so on and so forth so I don't understand why they needed to create this illusion that they were falling in love with each other and then out of nowhere state that they're not. I just can't make sense of it. 

OVERALL: I gave this play 2 stars simply because of Scorpius and that it's a Harry Potter book. Maybe it is better to actually watch the play in motion and not read the script, and I would still like to see the play of course. But again, as a play/book this didn't work for me, this was not the Harry Potter I grew up with, so I actually wouldn't recommend it.