Nineteen Years Later...
WARNING: This post includes SPOILERS for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child! If you have yet to read the script, just click the exit button here. It's okay. I'm not offended. Really.
Barnes and Noble was sold out. Completely. Not a single copy left, except for the giant stacks of preorders behind the counter that Boyfriend kept eyeing suspiciously. And so, in an effort to maintain calm and fangirl sanity, I resorted to Amazon and two day shipping.
And then I finished reading it two and a half hours after I ripped the box open.
Ever since the book dropped at midnight July 31 (Harry Potter's birthday, for all you non-Potterheads...nice marketing move, Rowling & Co.), I've seen a lot of things people have posted concerning the script. And what sort of English teacher would I be if I didn't add what I thought? (Also, five years ago I wrote a 20-page research paper on Harry Potter...I promise this won't be as long, or as awful.)
1. Number one complaint I've seen/heard: "I wish it was a narrative instead of a script." *insert squinty emoji here* You bought a script. It says on the cover "Script." Rowling spent months correcting people and telling them it was a script, not a book. So why did you buy a script if you didn't want to read one?
2. In reference to the first point, yeah, it's definitely going to read differently from a novel. Case in point: I finished it in two and half hours. Even nearly 20 years after the release of the first Harry Potter novel, it still takes me about a day to get through it. The script format, though, lets us focus more on the character's interactions with each other, rather than allowing us to get bogged down in minute details.
3. Rowling is getting a lot of critique for the writing style, ie: "It reads like fanfiction;" "The writing is immature;" and "Her writing is a shadow of what it was." Look at the cover of your books, people. Seriously. Come on.
4. The script is definitely not without its flaws. Ron's character really grated on me in this read. I didn't like that he came across as silly and mindless, especially after the character growth that we see in the seventh book. And the train scene with the trolley witch was...interesting. I'm not really sure how that fit in to the overall story, but I read it and moved on.
5. There was more humor than I was expecting, and definitely some dark stuff (Scorpius getting stuck in that awful AU made me want to bawl my eyes out). And while I always protested the continuation of the Potter story--especially after the epilogue of Deathly Hallows--it was actually really cool to see what happened to Wizarding World.
6. A genius thing was done in this book: we got a character who didn't like Harry Potter or Hogwarts. EVERYONE is supposed to love Hogwarts! We had seven books telling us how wonderful it was! Seven books of Harry saving the world! But here we get the cold reality of someone who is truly an outsider and doesn't feel like any place is home.
7. As much as I hate to admit it, I've always wondered if Bellatrix was successful in her...uhh...romanticizing of Lord Voldemort. Finally. An answer. Some people really do go for the whole bad boy thing.
Overall, I'd probably give this book 4 out of 5 stars. There were some inconsistencies concerning characters and such, but the story itself was entertaining and easy to read. Definitely would be a great thing to see on stage...especially since there is so much reference to magic in the scenery!
What did you guys think? What it everything you've dreamed of and more? Did it severely let you down? Are you meh? Let me know!