WARNING: This article contains spoilers.
First of all, I must say I would have probably hesitated to read the book even more if it hadn’t been for my own curiosity and my students’ encouragement. Actually, I was quite sceptical about it.
[What??? An eighth Harry Potter book? Ha ha! ]
We’ve seen old stuff brought to life already, not necessarily with great success.
I must mention at this point that I am a huge Harry Potter fan. I read the books as a teenager and in my early twenties, got stuck in the Potter Universe for a looong time actually. I didn’t want to destroy the image.
I finished reading the new book a few days ago (better late than never) and I have to admit that it exceeds my expectations. It doesn’t mean I’m in love with it, it’s just better than I thought it would be, and I was very distrustful.
Some background first. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a script written by Jack Thorne based on a story by J. K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany. The fact that it’s a play makes it completely different from the previous books, but for me it’s a good thing. I could just easily imagine the scene and the interactions between the characters, even with minimal background description.
In most of the cases, I liked the fact that the main characters have undergone some personality changes that you wouldn’t expect them to. In the new book, Harry Potter can be a horrible father and Draco Malfoy is not as sure of his self-importance as he used to be. The new generation is very unlike their parents, too. Albus Potter is in Slytherin and he does not show any Quidditch talent at all. Scorpio Malfoy is a friendly boy who has not inherited his father’s leadership skills. What’s more, Potter and Molfoy juniors are best friends, can you imagine that?
The dialogues are usually humorous and witty but they can seem forced and unnatural in some parts of the book. What’s more, the characters say things you would never expect them to. [Harry Potter offending Professor McGonagall? What’s going on here]?
What I disliked most about the script was the fact that it doesn’t offer us an entirely new adventure. The whole plot is based on travelling back in time to change some crucial facts. A kind of a well-worn story I’m afraid, banal and illogical at times. What I would like is something new and impressive, with more multidimensional characters and a fresh plot, only slightly connected to the old one. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy the time travel at all, it was fun, but I’ve already seen Back to the Future and The Butterfly Effect umteen times.
I just hope I didn’t discourage you because I still think you should read the book, especially if you’re a Harry Potter geek. I can’t say I’m excited by it and I’m not sure I will ever re-read it, but it’s still a nice story with some new surprising characters and a couple of funny twists.
hesitate – wahać się
encourage – zachęcać
curiosity – ciekawość
exceed expectations – przewyższać oczekiwania
script – scenariusz
witty – dowcipny
offend – obrażać
multidimensional – wielowymiarowy