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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K.Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne

Isn't that something to look forward to ?! An 8th in the line of the Harry Potter saga...Unlike when I was younger, I did not pre-book this one (sad what ageing does to you) but just tried my luck at the local bookstore and hit it off. Lucky me !

It went down in a week, which must have been the time it used to take me to tackle The Order of the Phoenix back in my schooldays. And it left me happy. Not delirious and confused, but happy. 

Nothing wrong with the book at all; in fact the story was as tight as you could ask for, what kept nagging me was that I was missing out on some of the finest writings of Rowling herself. If only this were a 2,000-pager, I would probably have taken a couple of days off from work and gorged on it till I was bloodshot in the eyes. However, considering that a story as complex as this is written in a theatre-format, I am pretty surprised at how well it has come out. Admittedly, the movies took some time to mature (personally I started loving the screen versions from the third installment onwards), and so, imagining the thing playing out on the stage is a mighty stretch. But the effects as described, leave little to imagination, and given that a true Potterhead already has had a basic visualisation available for every phenomenon, the play read along more than fine. I particularly loved the bit where (Spoiler Alert) time came unspooling with the Time-Turner ! It would be utterly unfair to compare the experience of a novel to that of a play, and with that in mind, I can safely say, this has been a very graphically described piece of work indeed. And from what I've read of the reviews, the on-stage depiction has not failed to wow even the uninitiated. 

Special effects aside, the characters are just as I had imagined them, with the exception of probably Harry. It is difficult to know what a childhood like that could do to a man, but Harry seemed more unsure, a little more worn than I had anticipated. A tad more vulnerable too. In a classic tale of a rebellious child of a famous parent, I wished Harry would have been clearer about his past. More often than not, fame is a crown of thorns for straight-minded and honest folk like Harry, and it hurt me a bit to see him struggling to wear it well. It hit home a sense of perpetual restlessness that our favourite hero would have to live with all his life. I wanted him to be happy that his travails were over, and to see life invade my dreams, made me a little sad. Maybe, being a part of a generation that has grown with the Dumbledore's Army, the fact that all is not hunky dory with Harry, makes me  a bit unsettled. 

Notwithstanding all morbid, self-consuming thoughts, I would like to tip my hat to Scorpius, who has been my favourite character in the book. He is fun, unlike his dad, though I've often wondered what it would have been like if Harry and Draco had ever teamed up for mischief (of the innocent kind, of course; they have both had had enough crosses to bear by themselves). And might I mention (Spoiler Alert) that I seriously doubt if Rose Granger-Weasley would turn out to be as judgemental as that ?! Of course reform is round the corner, but still, it seemed that if the Minister would have heard of it, she would have been aghast with the girl ! 

All said and done, it was time well-spent on my bus-ride to the office everyday, as I overlooked and pardoned everyone who stomped on my feet and blew droplets of rainwater from their umbrellas as I eagerly turned pages. As far as keeping the legacy going, The Cursed Child has hit the spot all right. And if a certain somebody simply wouldn't write another full-fledged novel, I daresay this more than compensates for the unsatiated...

Please, please, J.K., one more ???


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