Girls strike a pose after purchasing the script book at Crossword Bookstore at City Center Mall.
Girls strike a pose after purchasing the script book at Crossword Bookstore at City Center Mall.

Based on a story by JK Rowling, playwright Jack Thorne and director John Tiffany, the play ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’ opened in London over the weekend and the script of the same released in book format at midnight on July 31. The Hans India received a copy on Sunday before the edition hit shelves, courtesy the publishers, Hachette India.

‘Cursed Child’ picks up 19 years later, featuring Harry as an overworked employee of the ‘Ministry of Magic’ and father of three. Presented in five-parts, the story quickly establishes the difficult relationship of Harry and his son Albus, who is sorted into Slytherin and feels that he is failing the ‘Potter’ name at Hogwarts. By the end of act one, the book sets up a dark tone for itself as Albus and his friend, Scorpius Malfoy take to travelling in time (yes, Time-Turners are back) and stop Cedric Diggory’s death on the night that marked Voldemort’s return.

Young and reckless, the duo mess things up to the extent that in one situation, they find themselves in a world where Harry Potter is dead and there’s a ‘Voldemort Day’ being celebrated. Ultimately, the older generation - that includes Harry (now Head of Magical Law Enforcement), Ron (now owner of Weasley Wizard Wheezes), Hermione (now the Minister of Magic), Ginny (now Sports Editor at The Daily Prophet) and Draco (now an employee of Ministry of Magic) - joins the youngsters to defeat the 20-something girl, Delphi, the ‘cursed child’ who has a direct connection to Voldemort.

The eighth story in the series, ‘Cursed Child’ is the darkest and most complex one so far, in terms of both plot and emotions. Switching between time zones it takes a reader to iconic events throughout Harry’s journey as Albus and Scorpius attempt to right what (Albus presumes) his father wronged. Consequently, this evokes a sense of connect to Potterheads who read the previous seven books.

The script book has a heavy burden to live up to the Potter hype and it impresses immensely. Rowling’s sense of humour is apparent in many scenes and her plot-development genius shines throughout, which is a huge bonus for the book.

That it is a script, surprisingly, works for the fast-paced story and makes for an extremely imaginative reading experience. It has been almost a decade for fans waiting to know what happened in Harry’s life and ‘Cursed Child’ is testimony to the fact that nothing can undermine the thrill of a ‘Harry Potter’ story.

By Asra Ghouse