Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

cursed-child-reviewSPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read the Cursed Child yet, please stay away!

Okay, if you’re still reading this, I’m assuming that you’ve read the Cursed Child already. And let me preface this by saying that while I enjoyed the book for the most part, I was a little let down by it.

So what did I love about it? I loved seeing our trio all grown up with their responsibilities to take care of. I loved seeing Harry being Harry, Ron being Ron and Hermione being Hermione. They’re still very familiar despite subtle changes to their character due to their age, jobs and parenthood. The dialogue also feels very JK Rowling like, it really took me back to my time with the characters in the first seven books. The wizarding world of Harry Potter was back again. But at the same time, it’s not. There’s a distinct difference and to me, the Cursed Child is not a sequel. It’s a spinoff.

I loved Albus and Scorpio. Especially Scorpio. I love reading about how Albus struggled with being the son of a famous father and being a Slytherin in a family of Gryffindors. I love reading about how Scorpio struggled with the pressure of being “the Cursed Child”, suspected to be the son of Voldemort and despite all that, still maintaining a positive outlook in live. How the two misfits meet up and befriend each other. How they struggle to fight for one another in a world that seemed biased against them. It’s the very opposite of Harry and his friends. (Except maybe Harry and his friends in the fifth book).

So what didn’t I love about it? Time-Turners. Freaking Time-Turners. I thought we were done with Time-Turners. I thought it would be limited to book 3 and that cameo appearance in book 5. But no, they had to bring back the Time-Turner and the “true”, super powered Time-Turner at that. Sigh. Book 3 was one of my least favorite in the series because of all the time traveling. Granted, the Time-Turner did allow us to meet with some characters like Snape and see the potential futures of Ron and Hermione. But seriously, Cedric becoming a Death Eater because he was embarrassed at the Triwizard Tournament? I don’t even know how to compute that.

I hated Draco’s story. He was supposed to be a redeemed character. His whole arc in the original series was leading to it. And at the end of Deathly Hallows, he seemed to at least respect Harry if not befriend him. But in Cursed Child, he’s still hostile. There’s a resentment there which is understandable but in my head canon, I had him and Astoria living a happy life and being respectful friends with Harry, meeting up for a reunion once a year. I imagined Draco arguing with his parents about Astoria. I know that it is inevitable that head canon will be crushed when I read a canon novel that covers a similar time period, but I hadn’t expect Draco to play such a big role and was totally not prepared for it.

Now for the elephant in the room – Delphi. Or rather her parentage. I find it hard to believe that not only would Voldemort have a child with Bellatrix but that he would allow the child to survive. He doesn’t strike me as the kind who would share power, and since he’s effectively immortal, he wouldn’t need an heir to inherit the world he created. And for sure he is incapable of loving her. So why did he let Delphi live? Did he not fear that she would become a threat to his rule? Was he confident in controlling her? Did he not know she existed? Bellatrix doesn’t strike me as the kind who would hide her child from Voldemort. She’s said that she would give her sons in service to the Dark Lord if she had them to give. Frankly, I think if Voldemort had asked her to kill Delphi, she would have done it. There is a theory that Delphi is not who she believes she is, but I doubt we’ll get to know if it’s true or otherwise.

There are also many questions left unanswered in the book. Who foretold Delphi’s prophecy? Why is Harry’s scar burning up again when he’s no longer a Horcrux? What’s the Augurey all about? Was there something between Albus and Scorpio that was more than friendship? Questions that will likely go unanswered, barring some update on Pottermore or another change of mind for a ninth book. And at this point in time, I’m not sure I want another one.

To summarize: I enjoy the book more than I dislike it. Most of the dislike are little nitpicks, and will likely be easily ignored by most people but they just stood out like a sore thumb to me.

That’s all from me. Thanks for reading!

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8 thoughts on “Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

  1. I totally agree with all your points. Honestly, I don’t agree with a lot of the things in it. From Draco and Harry’s relationship to the existence of Delphi. But I also went into it kind of knowing I wouldn’t consider it canon. It’s my personal opinion that after a certain amount of time, an author ought to leave well enough alone. Enjoyed your review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I should have done the same too, I just didn’t set my expectations correctly I guess. I too think that authors should leave a series alone if they’ve left it for so long, especially without a really strong entry and with so many fan fiction about it. Thanks!

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  2. I really enjoyed this book, mainly because it brought me back into this world I loved, and oh, SO MUCH NOSTALGIA. Plus, I loved seeing the golden trio back, and loved their interactions, and the sense of familiarity in the dialogue and everything. That being said, I loved how many questions you asked in your review, that are indeed left unanswered in this story. And now…well now I’m going to think about all of these for a while hahaha.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have yet to read this book, but I have read so many reviews that I already know what happens! I still don’t want to ruin the actual image I have after the ending of the last book, which is why I don’t want to actually pick it up. They destroyed all time turners… so technically it isn’t possible to time travel? also, I can’t imagine voldemort getting close enough to anyone to actually have a child with them…

    Liked by 1 person

    • I had my reservations too, but ultimately bit the bullet and read it. They kind of retconned it and said it was the superpowered “true” Time Turner that wasn’t in the Ministry at that time. Which just felt like lazy storytelling to me. Apparently it was a one night stand type of thing, but I still don’t think Voldemort would do such a thing. He just strikes me as asexual. I do wonder how much involvement Rowling had in the play. I think its worth reading just for the golden trio.

      Liked by 1 person

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